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ouchh blistering finger tips

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by jmnbass, Apr 5, 2006.

  1. jmnbass

    jmnbass Guest

    Apr 5, 2006
    :meh: I am playing bass for the musical at my high school. I am not using an amp for this. I was playing the crap out of my bass, then later I had a jazz band rehearsel and played the crap out of my bass some more. And in the middle of rehearel a blood blister formed on my pizz index finger.
    Any tips for treatment
  2. I know exactly what you're talking about man. I still get blisters all the time. One time, my index finger actually began to bleed while I was playing. I actually didn't notice until I saw my hand.

    Sadly I don't have any treatment. I've just been dealing with it for the past few years. That probably wasn't a smart thing to do...
  3. Audiophage


    Jan 9, 2005
    I love when its not you, but someone else who notices the bleeding first.

    The only thing that I can think of is to really build up your callouses. Just stop if you're bleeding, it won't help to completely rip apart your skin there.
  4. JoeyNaeger

    JoeyNaeger Guest Commercial User

    Jun 24, 2005
    Houston, TX
    Bass Specialist, Lisle Violin Shop
    I wouldn't recomend this now, but next time when you can feel your fingers are on the verge of ripping apart, superglue makes a fantastic temporary callous. Just squit some on and dab at it untill it dries(make sure you don't glue your fingers together though).
  5. Nivaca


    Jan 8, 2005
    At the break on a set or a rehearsal, and after playing, I always place my index and middle RH fingers in ice. That has worked beautifully ever since I began. Now I don't get any blisters.
  6. Anon2962


    Aug 4, 2004
    Hmm that's interesting. I would have thought the melting ice would have softened the skin and made it more likely to cut or blister. Thanks for the tip!
  7. mje


    Aug 1, 2002
    Southeast Michigan
    Heat is what causes blisters- whether from friction or an external source. The blistering is a protective response. Icing the fingers cools them, QED.
  8. Anon2962


    Aug 4, 2004


  9. Not when the person playing the bass after is the first on to notice... (I play the school basses, the girl in jazz band bled all over it and I plucked through without noticing :meh: )

    Yay, first post :D
  10. Sippy


    Aug 1, 2005

    hmm I'm happy it works for somebody. But logically ice would soften the skin and make it easier to burst. I haven't been playing long enough to develop blisters (plus the calouses on my fingers are huge already from the bass guitar) but a friend of mine who plays the double all the time just deals with it. Once it starts to come up he puts neosporin on it.. and puts a towel on his clothes and continues to play. After the show he promptly wipes down his bass. he has this problem a lot and his bridge looks like soembody "splatterd" painted it with red paint.


    Aug 26, 2005

    First, be sure you are NOT playing up on your fingertips....get some of the meat of your first and second fingers on those strings! And Joey has a point-- CRAZY GLUE-- is an old trick for making a temporary callous. Otherwise, soak 'em in brine after you play and eventually they'll get calloused. Then try to keep the callouses
  12. Marc Piane

    Marc Piane

    Jun 14, 2004
    I've heard all kinds of 'tricks' for building up your fingers. There is really only one way though. Play, play, play.

    I've tried it all (brine, compound w, lemon juice, etc) All that stuff really does is hurt. A little crazy glue works in a pinch. I carry liquid bandage in my case, I call it 'fix-a-flat'.

    The fact is you just need to play as much as possible (and avoid doing the dishes). M-->
  13. I ran into a major blistering issue after playing a string of gigs three nights in a row. both my index and middle finger developed entire tip-sized blisters at the end of the 3rd set on the 3rd night. I did the fourth set using my 3rd finger and thumb - a great opportunity to develop another technique.

    Well, I had to do a gig a few days later and was pondering whether or not to lance these beauties because they showed no signs of deflating on their own before the gig happened. For some reason, I was not into the idea of popping them so in order to survive the gig, I used cloth-style band-aids and wrapped each of the tips nice and tight with one and used a second to hold them in place. After a few minutes with my 'can't feel the strings' fingertips, I got used to it and it worked well as a temporary fix.

    Since those blisters I have not had any. But I also have not had any 3 gig in a row weeks either...

  14. ellen28


    Jan 23, 2006
    London, England
    oh my god, it thought i wasn't playing enough! i play twice a week, atleast (not including practice) and my fingers are quite tough, have been for years. Yet whenever i do a show (5 nights in a row, plus dress, plus matinee), i get blisters on both fingers, they shread my fingers! But now i know it's quite normal i can ignore the people who say i show play more. I'm only 18 and already have hard fingers!

    It is fun when i do get blisters, i agree that it helps u learn another technique ; of using my 3rd finger and thumb..
  15. fcleff


    Apr 22, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    I play arco most of the time. When I get the occasional jazz gig my blisters come up. Then they tear off. Then they callous. Then I play classical for a long time. Then the whole vicious cycle starts over. All I can say is that I agree with the cats who say, "Play, play, play." That way you will keep the callouses. Good luck and good night. :bassist:
  16. Pcocobass


    Jun 16, 2005
    New York
    I used to get blisters when I played more on and off. They would come and I would pop them and drain out the fluid (sorry this is so gross) but keep the skin intact. Eventually this would turn into a callous but it would mean a week or so of pain. If you play everyday, you'll only need to go through this once and then your fingers will become nice and tough.
  17. My old teacher swore by Nu-Skin. However, my work-around for this common problem is to do at least 30 minutes of hard jazz pizz a day to keep the callous around. It may not be as hard as the ones on my left hand but they get the job done.
  18. Tbeers


    Mar 27, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Just keep playing... there's no substitute.
  19. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    I just sprung two new blisters - one one each pizz finger after a jazz class the other night. Joy. :meh:

    I'm laying off for a couple of days to heal (seems to work best for me) despite frequent practicing as of late (before the blisters). I noticed that both of mine weren't going away after a couple days (I kept playing through) so I tried to lance them. Got the index finger one, but the middle finger one is too deep, at least it has a bigger callous on it. The index blister is closer to the surface and will rip with repeated playing.

    Anyways, they're not drying up so quickly. I used to rock climb and remembered that climbers chalk dries your hands pretty quick. Anybody ever try using this to try to get those blisters to dry out? Just curious.

    Gonna try the superglue to get a hard covering if I have to play and the skin hasn't hardened yet.
  20. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard Commercial User

    Apr 4, 2005
    Kansas City area
    Black Dog Bass Works
    Super Glue is great stuff!! I got big blisters on both my index and middle fingers, lanced them and coated them with gel type glue.
    I used a toothpick to spread the glue and built up layers. That stuff stayed for a couple of days and when it wore off instead of blisters I had nice callouses.
    The gel stuff is great.

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