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Switching from right hand to left hand play

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jaymeister99, Aug 7, 2005.

  1. jaymeister99


    Aug 2, 2005
    I just got back into playing the Bass, havent played for about 12 years. I had stopped because my left hand has nerve damage, so couldnt move around too well on the frets.

    I recently got a lefty bass to play. Still having lots of trouble adapting to the lefy playing, even though I am left handed. My right hand just doesnt bounce around on the neck like my left hand did, and my left hand just cant seem to pluck as well as my right did. I know its getting confusing!!!

    Anybody who has any hints, advise, or any other help greatly appreciated.
  2. Anti_Wish


    May 14, 2004
    Boston, Ma
  3. Stubbornness. You're fighting years of muscle memory as well as a long-term injury, so it isn't going to be easy... start right from scratch, though. Pretend you've never held a bass in your life before. If you try and do things you could do before, my bet is, with no offence meant to your skill and experience (Which I'm are a thousand times greater than my four months or so of playing), you're going to fall short and feel worse, because you're remembering how you used to do it, and then trying to do it back to front.

    Come at it fresh and don't get disheartened.

    This post probably didn't help one iota, though. Sorry, I just know what it's like to struggle against your body - I'm naturally right handed, do almost everything but write with my left hand, and it took me a long time to get used to playing right handed on a bass.
  4. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Amphetacronism is right, just practice. I know that there is nothing more disheartening than starting at the beginning. Beginning piano is very difficult because in my mind, I theoretically know how to play, it's just getting my hands to do what my brain wants them to. You're going through the same thing, and it's going to take time, but it'll work in the end. I promise.
  5. jaymeister99


    Aug 2, 2005
    Thanks, I think you are right. Im getting frustrated because I expect to play as good as I did righty. Now that I think back I did have some adjustment, it will be much harder now that I will have to "unlearn" and start all over, backwards! I have to train my mind to essentially work the opposite of what it did before.
  6. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    You can do it, just be patient.

    Years ago I played with a guitarist that had to switch to lefty because he lost several fingers on his left hand. He could still hold a pick fine, so he switched.

    He could wail like a mother . . . don't give up!
  7. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    What everybody else said. Tenacity and determination.

    I feel for you. I have similar injuries. But am fortunate enough not to suffer to a degree such as yours.

    You'll overcome this minor setback. You've taken the first step. That for most is the biggest hurdle.
  8. jaymeister99


    Aug 2, 2005
    All great responses, thanks all. Ive actually seen a slight improvement over the last few days. Probably just as slight as when I first started.

    Before I had nothing really to compare to, except how I played the day before. Ive started to compare my playing to the day before, rather than 12 years ago.