While reading many of your responses to some of the "pick" threads going, I was astonished to see the most important element of this whole discussion go almost completely untouched. A few people touched on it briefly, but I think a big point has been missed. The decision to use your fingers or a pick should be primarily based on one thing alone: the sound you are trying to make. I have always used both approaches. There is, in fact, an incredible range of tone colours and articulations that are possible with a pick that aren't possible with the fingers, and vice versa. I'm really surprised so many of you limit your sound palatte by not using one technique (many of you don't seem to want to use the pick from the looks of it). I think those of you who never use a pick are missing out on discovering the range of tones available to you. Many of you have said that you can get a broader range of tones with your fingers over pick. I don't see how. Some say they can get any sound from their fingers that is possible with a pick. I'd like to hear that. I can't imagine that being possible. (I also feel the reverse would be impossible) In any case, the biggest range of sounds certainly will come from using both approaches. It just seems silly to limit yourself by elimnating such a valuble tool. As a double bassist, if you took away my bow, you'd have to shoot me. My bow is where most of my sound comes from. It is infinately more expressive and capable of such a huge amount more variety of articulations and colours than I could ever hope to get from my fingers (pizzicato). I feel similarly about the pick - although to a much lesser degree - it is a tool, which with great pratice, can be used to draw great sounds from an instrument. Regarding the pick as being the easy way out, that's also a falacy. There are plenty of things that are harder to do with a pick than with your fingers. Ever tried to "swing" with a pick? It's much harder - but Joe Osborn and Carole Kaye used to do it on sessions in the '60's - a great tone, but very diferent than using your fingers. The bottom line is that your choice of which to use should be governed by the piece of music you are about to play and how you want it to sound. I know a few of you hinted at this earlier, but I was surprised to see how many people seemed to side-step this issue.