Picking while standing

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by MarshallNole, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. MarshallNole


    Dec 1, 2013
    When I Stand up and play with a pick, due to the angle of the guitar, I get a scratchy sound on the strings. How do you prevent this without bending your wrist at an uncomfortable angle so that it doesn't strike the string at an angle?

    Or is this scratchy sound normal when playing with a pick while standing?
  2. southshoreconor


    Oct 30, 2007
    The Road
    Endorsing Artist: Fender Musical Instruments, SIT strings
    i'd have to see exactly how you're holding the instrument. i can't picture an angle where my wrist (left or right) would be uncomfortable... Adjust your strap? Try a thinner, less rigid pick?
  3. smeet

    smeet Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2006
    Woodland Hills, CA
    I hate that scraping attack sound, which I hear from a lot of players, even on records. What I do is position my hand in a comfortable way, then make sure I hold the pick so it is at the correct angle (usually perpendicular) to the strings while my hand stays comfortable. That means the pick may stick out of your hand at a weird angle, depending on your anatomy, where the bass is, etc. But all that really matters is the angle between the string and the pick. You may have to figure out which part of your fingers to hold the pick with. If I hold it in the "correct" way (between the thumb and the side of the index finger), the angle with the string is bad. I sometimes hold it between thumb and tips of index/middle.
  4. MalcolmAmos

    MalcolmAmos Supporting Member

    I bet you came over from 6 string guitar. I did also and brought the pick over with me. I used a thick pick of 3.0 mm - the ole Big Stubby. I've since ditched the pick and now use my thumb - as a pick.

    With out seeing what you are doing I will not be able to help. The sound with a pick is different, but not scratchy.

    Get your bass up on your chest and see if that helps.

    Carol Kaye uses a pick, check out her site. She has a 100 tips section, may be something there. http://www.carolkaye.com/www/library/faq.htm

    Good luck.
  5. MarshallNole


    Dec 1, 2013
    I've never played another instrument.

    I use a 1.0 mm pick.

    Also, as smeet said, I am trying to hold the pick properly, between thumb and side of finger. If I use the tips of my fingers I don't have this problems. Perhaps that is the solution?

    My bass hangs around my belt buckle.
  6. Get a bass with neckdive :D
    I keed, I keed. When I play with a pick my bass usually stays at an angle of less than 45 degrees compared to horizontal, it makes it much, much easier to play without that awful scratching sound. Another thing you can do is play higher up, away from the bridge, where the string will give more instead of making your pick slide.
  7. southshoreconor


    Oct 30, 2007
    The Road
    Endorsing Artist: Fender Musical Instruments, SIT strings
    being comfortable is always the solution.
  8. Kyle_S


    Sep 11, 2013
    I keep the bass horizontal, about belt-high, and point the headstock straight ahead (like I'm holding a shotgun) to keep my fretting hand wrist straight.
  9. somegeezer


    Oct 1, 2009
    Pull your instrument higher up, so you can actually reach it properly.

    Having it swing around with your gonads is quite a problem for playing, without the arms of a chimp.
  10. I know what you mean exactly. Lifting the bass to where you're playing around your belly button, then sliding it towards your left (so the neck is farther from your body if you're right handed) and more perpendicular to you (you'll look like a cross) should help. It won't look cool but play for the blind not the deaf I always say.

    If you want to keep it low the straight angle needs to me more extreme
  11. GastonD


    Nov 18, 2013
    Belgrade, Serbia
    While this may not be very poplar piece of advice from the perspective of the rock-star stage appearance, it is nevertheless the quickest way to alleviate your problem.
  12. Fat Steve

    Fat Steve The poodle bites, the poodle chews it.

    Flats will get rid of that scraping sound.