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Octave technique

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by lermgalieu, Apr 2, 2002.

  1. I was wondering how rigidly you guys use "the rules" when playing octaves on the db. I find, especially as I "get better" (I think I am) on the DB, I have been playing octaves more like I would on a bass guitar - ie not transferring all my fingers from say the A string to the G string to hit the octave of a note, especially if the line is composed of a series of quick octaves. Does this make sense? In other words, not using Simandl type fingering to anchor the string behind the pinky when I go to the high note. It makes for more required focus on intonation, but speedier execution and better sounding results.

    Or am I ingraining a "bad" habit? Mingus did a lot of those octaves, and I have a feeling he did it the way I am describing because you can hear him slide the octaves around and he's actually a bit out of tune on them sometimes.

    I guess I am not asking so much "what is right" as I am asking how everyone else does it and why.

    thanks in advance - I stopped practicing for 5 mins specifically to ask this question!
  2. Yeah, that's pretty much the way I do it too. You have to do it that way if the tempo is up regardless of the style of music and whether you're playing pizz or arco.
  3. k -I only took a few lessons in the beginning, and haven't been critiqued in a while, so periodically I need a reality check. Thanks!
  4. jaybo

    jaybo Guest

    Sep 5, 2001
    Richmond, KY
    That's how I do it. In some cases where I'm doing octaves quite low, say on low F, I'll hold the low F with my index finger and the high F with my pinky along with the other three behind it for stability. This also puts your hand in perfect position if the next notes fall on the same string as the high octave note.

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