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Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Sonic, Oct 6, 2002.

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  1. Sonic

    Sonic Lord of the Grump

    Well Bassists, the time has come, the grand question that every bassist ponders on at least once in his life. Fingers or pick. Me personally, I tried pick, gave my right hand a hurnea and Have used my fingers exclusively ever since. All I can say is that I don't like picks, I wanna hear your opinions.
  2. Quizzo


    Aug 10, 2002
    Upstate SC
    I do both, any well rounded musician can do whatever they want to on his/her instrument. Personally I prefer fingers, but if I am playing old Metalliica I use "me didgits" and if I happen to be playing new Metallica, I will use a pick. My friends and I do alot of covers and I find that the best way to make the music work is by using whatever method the bassist happens to use, wether picks, fingers, bow, or drumstick. No one person should be stuck to a certain style. A good bassist is a well rounded musician.
  3. I like pick best, but sometimes you just need fingers. Sometimes I play pick, switch to thumb, to fingers and then back to pick. Not often, and its kinda hard to do it without stumbling, but if I can nail them I'll be unstoppably.
  4. Nocturnal

    Nocturnal Abuser of Thunderbird Shaped Objects. Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2002
    Chandler, Arizona
    I use both, but until recently it was mainly a pick. I like the sound better with a pick, I'm trying to be more versatile and expand my horizons. You have a lot more options with your fingers.
  5. DanGouge


    May 25, 2000
    Depends on the song and the bass. My fretted Jazz and my Gibson both sound decent w/ a pick. It doesn't really work with my Smith or my fretless Jazz that well though...
  6. pd_5string

    pd_5string Admin: Accnt Disabled

    Jan 23, 2002
    I combine what Geddy Lee and Vic Wooten do:

    Use double thumping to get a picked type sound but use your thumb instead. (Geddy uses his 1st or second finger and actually strums the string to get a picked type sound, I tried this, but I feel I can get a more precise vibe using my thumb instead).

    Click the below link and you will hear me doing this technique in the chorus of the song (main low bass line). Nice ballsy, percussive, but full tone.
  7. Tsal


    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    I prefer fingers. In fact, fingers might be one reason why I prefer bass over say, guitar. I feel instrument's closer when you have your flesh controlling the sound. I like classical nylon string guitars, too.
  8. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    Fingers without a doubt.

  9. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    Both. When I played in a metal band I used a pick most of the time. Now I play in a country band and use fingers 90% of the time, and pick the other 10%. I don't believe in limiting myself to only one style/sound.

    When you eat, which do you use - fork or spoon? No offense, but to me the pick or fingers question is just as ridiculous as this one. They are both legitimate tools, and each has a situation where it works best. No one would suggest that you use a fork for every food (soup?), why would anyone suggest you use only one technique for playing bass in all situations?
  10. dls59

    dls59 Supporting Member

    When I started, 27 years ago, I played with a pick exclusively (McCartney influence, I guess). At some point early on, I switched to fingers, and have not used a pick, except for the odd song that needs a pick, since then. Most always fingers.
  11. almost always fingers (thanks to the early influence of John Entwistle and some anonymous fusion player I saw at a party in LA)

    when i need more "pick attack" i just add some fingernail....
  12. moley


    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Almost always fingers, as I lean towards a funkier style of playing, and generally I prefer the sound of fingers. I use a pick when I'm playing along with Police songs, and some Beatles songs. I think it kinda suits 'em better.
  13. I started playing with pick only but soon I switched to fingers and haven't regretted it since (especially since I was not getting better at playing with a pick)
  14. FunkySpoo

    FunkySpoo Supporting Member

    Feb 6, 2002
    Fingers, usually. Pick when the song calls for it.
  15. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    I play with fingers most of the time on bass and guitar. The main reason is that I keep losing the picks. I keep my rh thumb nail long and use that.
  16. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    this does not belong in basses. i'll move it over to technique, where it can sit with the millions of other "pick or fingers" threads.
  17. I think a player well practiced in finger technique can get a pick sound without using one.
  18. I prefere pick, but I practise tabs/stave with fingers becuase i find it easier, this also helps when I go nuts and drop my pick, and have to use fingers, steal a stick, or rubbass off of the mic stand :D :p :eek:
  19. Groovski


    Sep 20, 2002
    My happy place
    I'ma finger picker my brotha, Now learning how to incorporate 3rd and 4th fingers into my playing. WeeHoo
  20. Tiwaz


    Sep 22, 2002
    Fingers all the way , I don't like soup music...:p

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