1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

My right hand sucks

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by arock0627, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. arock0627


    Mar 20, 2013
    Lawton, OK
    I am in desperate need of pizzicato exercises. I'm no Vic Wooten but by comparison my left hand is a tap dancing meat spider.

    I'm currently just doing exercises keeping the beat on semi fast tempos, but when it comes to quick triplets my right hand just turns into a big mass of stupid meat and tendons. I might as well just start using a pick sometimes.

    Is there any resource or exercise I can do to help my stupid hand out?
  2. CTC564

    CTC564 Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 7, 2011
    Toms River,NJ
    Very important to practice slowly...time will fix the awkwardness of your exercises
  3. zfunkman


    Dec 18, 2012
    start practicing your scales and patterns playing 16th notes to a metronome. Do this a lot and then do it some more and slowly turn up the metronome. This will work at getting your right hand faster but you have to do it a lot! In your case you may want to do the same thing with triplet feel.
  4. arock0627


    Mar 20, 2013
    Lawton, OK
    Appreciate the heads up. I'm more of a bald-faced groove style bassist, but I enjoy some bubbly fills and runs. Not to mention some riffs I play are particularly technical.

    So, oi, back to the grind. Hopefully the new bass will be my inspiration!
  5. skinnypete


    Oct 7, 2004
    New York, NY
    Learn every song on Iron Maiden's Number of the Beast.
  6. arock0627


    Mar 20, 2013
    Lawton, OK
    Aaaaaand Skinnypete doesn't like me.
  7. henry2513

    henry2513 Supporting Member

    May 9, 2011
    Los Angeles, Ca
    This and exactly this. When I was revamping my right hand I practiced everything at 40 BPM, Quarter notes and made sure to look at my right hand the entire time concentrating on the biomechanics. I did it for months and it paid off in spades.
  8. I have nothing to add, except that I love the phrase "tap dancing meat spider"!

  9. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    "Tap dancing meat spider"! LOL!

    One exercise that I've never regretted learning is taking complicated riffs and identifying the "essential" notes to play a simplified version of the riff. I find that as long as I hit certain "target" notes, I can slur or omit notes in between.

    This is especially true when playing in a band situation, and especially especially true when doubling the lick with another instrument.
  10. phillybass101


    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    Start listening to and practicing some old Funk and R&B music and watch what happens to your right hand.
  11. arock0627


    Mar 20, 2013
    Lawton, OK
    That's the plan actually. I'm starting with Bootsy.
  12. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    Trust me listening to Bootsy "Player of The Year" is a very good plan good luck I'm in the same boat so I'll be listening with you.
  13. Look up bass permutations and start practicing them slowly with as light a touch as possible. Slowly bring up the speed. These will pin point where the strength imbalance lies.

    Also, pay attention to your right hand/plucking hand. Practice using a lighter touch with it along with the left. It is amazing how much a heavy attack with one will effect the other.
  14. phillybass101


    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    Do yourself a favor and START with the Bootsy that played with James Brown. ,Not the space bass Bootsy.
  15. Mike M.

    Mike M.

    Feb 14, 2010
    I've been concerned about my plucking hand as well because lately, it just ain't what it use to be. I just turned 60 and have had a life time of physical jobs. One thing I've noticed is how easily I'll spraign (spelling?) my right wrist these days, or how cramped up my right hand gets when writing with a pen or pencil. As far as playing, anything that requires a steady 16th note pattern is getting pretty rough for me and sounds very uneven. Instead of a nice, flowing da-da-da-da da-da-da-da it sounds like da-DA-da-DA da-DA-da-DA. I'm trying to practice this slowly but find that even this is hard.

    Getting old.
  16. El-Bob

    El-Bob Supporting Member

    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON
    This is actually excellent advice. There's nothing like some old-school maiden to get your right hand chops cleaned up.
  17. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Wikipedia often mistakes my opinions for fact Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    Once you pass the Iron Maiden test, give the Rush tune "Animate" a try. However, you are only allowed to play with one finger (up and down).

    Not a practical style, but a nice workout to gain strength and to get a smooth but firm attack.

    (For bonus points when you start to feel pain switch to middle finger only and see if you can make it sound exactly the same as the index finger.)
  18. Get Mark Michell's guide to Right Hand Technique for bass, best technique book I've ever owned. I changed my entire approach to right hand technique after reading it, and it's now noticeably more precise and articulate. It comes at the highest level of recommendation.
  19. amoodymule


    May 25, 2008
    Oklahoma City
    Do bassists really play like this? I have recently, around 6-8 months, I don't like using a pick. It seems to work ok, I just thought it was my lazy way when I can't keep up to my first 2 finger pads, :D ...more woodsheddin for me.
  20. Elltodo


    Mar 24, 2013
    Practice slow deliberate clean notes. Clean in clean out. Slowly slowly slowly, after your totally over doing that learn every song on number of the beast. Then start over again

Share This Page