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Picking from the shoulder-can this actually be done?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by anonymous278347457, Apr 8, 2006.

  1. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005
    Im sure you have all seen it, all these punk bands that seem to be able to play their basses and guitars all from strumming from a pure up and down motion from their shoulders.

    a good example of this "technique" that you see on Tv all the time is this:

    my questions that can this actually be done?Ive tried but its really hard to just hit one note(i usually play with fingers)

    Im have a feeling its fake and is for looking cool on videos
  2. I'm sure it can be done, and it looks "agressive"(or stupid:D ), but it is definately a big waste of energy...

    www.carolkaye.com - it's in the wrist, not the whole body, LOL!

    My suggestion:

    After you learn it the right way, then you can get all "crazy" with it, and your technique will help you hit the right notes when you're doing it like that.

    Learn the rules first, then you can break them...
  3. v-12


    Mar 3, 2005
    FL Panhandle
    it seems to be only for looks, they never play anything too complicated while "entertaining" like that.....
  4. CrazyArcher


    Aug 5, 2004
    Just listen how it sounds - "playing with the shoulder"... The mere sound tells that it's really dumb :D
  5. I don't mind that video or song actually.:meh: Oh dear.

    The only time I "play with my shoulder" is when I have Bass hung around my knees and pretend to be a Punk. Joking around, of course.
  6. While it is basically just for looks, it's really not that hard. I usually hear that you should technically strum with your elbow and not your wrist, which is basically what this "shoulder" strumming is. The shoulder doesn't really move up and down very much. It's not meant to. Elbows do, which is what you're really seeing.
  7. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005

    yeah, thats always fun :D.
  8. I saw the bassist for a band called the Lawrance Arms live. He was the craziest guy I have ever seen. Played a Fender Jazz through a crazy looking rack rig with a bunch of mesa speakers. It looked like he knew what he was doing. But when he went up on stage it was absolutely insane. He was picking extreamly fast moving his fingers like crazy, jumping around on stage and singing (Lawrence Arms is a trio which splits vocals between the guitarist and the bassist). I don't think he ever looked down at the fretboard... and often time was even picking on the fretboard. The scary thing was...

    He was damn good. He played very upbeat lines, complicated but subtle (to the point few people really noticed). They blended surprisingly well with the guitar. He never missed a beat, even when throwing his bass around. He had a good picking technique. He played so well, the entire pit gravitated to his side.

    This just goes to show that you can play well, and be a showman.
  9. yeah.. i think it can be done... but not like in that video...

    picking comes from the wrist... you cant make strumming motions and only hit one note like they did in that video...

    you could make strumming motions and mute the strings with your left hand, but it would make a clunking sound..

    i just dont think it works well.. keep your hand down there and pick, youll be better that way...
  10. Yup, that's how you do it, you mute the other strings with your left hand. If you look at the bassists left hand you'll see. A lot of punk bands will just "try" and do it and if they hit open strings too they wont care because they are putting on a show.
  11. TOOL460002

    TOOL460002 Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2004
    Santa Cruz CA
    i look less than cool doing man things- so i dont put my strap at sack level and strum away all emo and "hard" and ****- but that's me. if all you use is a pick and you are meant to be heavy- no worries about it- go for it.

    i go with a super high strap and very seldom do i strum- and almost donr of that is acted out in a mirror to look epic or whatever. i like complication- precision- the occasional tap riff and a cornacopia of harmonics. if anyone can pull any of that off my hat is off to them.

    oh- and if anyone gives you **** for wearing your bass all high- make them watch tom morello. no one has rocked harder with a more preppy choice of strap position.
  12. yeah it can be done easily but not when your alone. you need a band that plays asround you to cover up all the unwanted noise it makes. just place your finger on the note you want to play and mute the other strings. again, it's only a thing that can be done live in a band context don't practice it to much as it'll never serve you any purpose and it'll make you sound like poo.
  13. Minger


    Mar 15, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    this just reminds me: I need to learn to play with a pick.

    I mean, sure guitar witha pick is easy, but on bass.....

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