Playing with a pick

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Vorago, Jul 26, 2003.

  1. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Probably a question that has been asked here many times before but here we go...

    Is the picking technique (playing with a pick) used on a bass any different from the one on a electrical guitar?

    If it's been asked and aswered before, then just the link to the topic would be great too, since the search engine doesn't seems to be working, it doesn't on my pc, blasted piece of equipment:mad:
  2. It is basically the same. I tend to play more with alternate picking when I play bass because it gives it a more grovier vibe.
  3. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Really just two aspects in can think of, given my experience ---

    1.. You will probaqbly need to "choke up" on the pick a bit more, just like a baseball bat or hammer. Hitting those heavier gauge bass strings makes the pick fly out of your fingers easier. Plus, you get a more solid sound because your attack is more authoritative than a wimpy guitar strum.

    2.Since they're cheap, buy a dozen or so picks, all different makes and gauges. Some picks don't even last through one song, some are too stiff, some don't have enough backbone. Like strings, it's a trial and error process until you find just the right one for your technique.
  4. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Vancouver, BC
    Regarding the differences between guit and bass with a pick I think choking up is the single most important thing to try. Also something you learn from playing the upright arco is that you need to hold the bow just barely tight enough to keep from dropping it and the same can be true with a pick. The thing will move around in yer hand no matter how tight you grip it and if you're really clamping onto it you can't slip it, or let it slip back to where you want it.

    A little off topic I heard a heavily Django influenced guitarist (from Florida?) with a French kinda sounding name on CBC radio four or five years ago and the guy playing bass with him took a solo with the band laying out that was a real lesson in the technical AND musical use of a pick. Anyone know who this guy might be? Steve Swallow aside (and lets not beat the his sound thing anymore to death than it's already been)there aren't too many guys that your with SERIOUS plectrum chops and this guy really blew my mind.