Playing with pick or fingerstyle

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by mrbaloo, Jan 23, 2013.

Playing with pick or fingerstyle

Poll closed Jan 30, 2013.
  1. I'm playing with a pick

    7 vote(s)
  2. I play with finger style

    32 vote(s)
  1. mrbaloo


    May 9, 2002

    I don't know if this subject has been up to the TB board before. But I would like to submit a new poll: Do you mainly play with a pick or most often with finger style?

  2. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    Pick or fingers ? I think it may have come up possibly once, since Talk Bass has been in existance !! :D :D
  3. both
  4. I've NEVER seen this addressed on TB before, but I've only been on for five years.

    Fingers, for what it's worth. I think I should learn pick, but I'm lazy.
  5. RadioRob

    RadioRob Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2012
    I use pick for oldies like surfing USA and love potion #9. Some newer stuff like walk like an Egyptian. Depends on how I hear the bass in the song. As for personal preference, I like fingers.
  6. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
    I started out using a pick and played that way for over 20 years. In 2002, I was presented with the opportunity to join a touring blues band. I met with the BL (Guitarist, Lead Singer) on a Friday night. He gave me a cd, told me to pick two songs and be ready for the audition on Monday. I had read that many blues guitarists prefer their bass players to use finger style so I spent the weekend learning the entire cd in finger style and got the gig. I have used finger style ever since and rarely use a pick. I find that I am faster, more accurate, and it make muting easier. I also like the tone better.
  7. MrChrizmo


    Mar 31, 2012
    Vienna, Austria
    I don't like pick-playing.

    I sometimes regret it because some of the songs I play could really benefit from the different sound but I just don't like it.

    I have small hands and play the bass very... diagonal, with the body tilted downward and the neck tilted upward so my fretting hand is comfortable, however in this position I find it hard to play with a pick.
  8. AuntieBeeb


    Dec 12, 2010

    Shall I warm up some popcorn?
  9. mrbaloo


    May 9, 2002
    I have been member of TB since 2002, but I'm sure variants of the subject have been up here at TB. But now the topic is "pick or finger style", nothing else... :smug:

    Ok, I haven't been very busy on TB the last couple of years. So I might have missed one or two threads.

  10. I play both styles, depending on the song. A lot of Tom Petty's music was played pickstyle, but some songs, like Free Fallin' sound better fingerstyle.
  11. robotriot


    Jan 8, 2013
    i'm fairly new to bass, but i've been totally into finger style.. but I've been going to shows and watching bassists, I can definitely tell when it'd be rad to use a pick; it's a very different sound!
  12. El-Bob

    El-Bob Supporting Member

    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON
    You need an option for both.
  13. I use both. I would like to slap but it triggers my tendinitis. I'll use whatever suits me including hitting the strings with manicotti dipped in epoxy and fairy dust. I eschew all notions of there being one way or one best way to do anything except for the one universal truth that the bitter comes out better on a stolen guitar.
  14. jgroh

    jgroh Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2007
  15. funnyfingers


    Nov 27, 2005
    You need an option for thumb as a pick and also using your index finger up and down like a pick.
  16. mrbaloo


    May 9, 2002
    You are right, I have no options beside "pick" and "finger style". That was my intention. What style (pick/finger style) are you most likely to use when playing. But your comment here is welcome.

  17. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    I don't recall this topic ever coming up before...hmm, interesting topic;

    I play with fingers mostly and use a thumb pick on one tune that has a descending scale run in the middle break that is too fast for my fingers. One day I'm going to master that run and leave the thumb pick at home!
  18. BryanM


    Dec 15, 2007
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Mostly fingerstyle, occasionally pick, occasionally metal slide percussively to interact with the pickups, and even occasionally bodhran beater. Very rarely slap.
  19. Which style is the best for metal?:bag::D
  20. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    I'm mostly fingerstyle. I can do a pick, but don't like it as much. Besides, I have fingernails.