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The Spider Technique.

Discussion in 'Ask Steve Lawson & Michael Manring' started by ironmaidenisgod, Jun 19, 2004.

  1. ironmaidenisgod


    May 20, 2004
    This is the first time I'm posting to you guys.

    Just wanted to let you know I've a great deal of respect for both of you gentlemen.

    Could you guys please direct me on the spider technique?Do you use your thumb too in this technique?Or is it just 4 fingers?

    Help! :help: :help:
  2. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK

    thanks for your kind words, much appreciated.

    Can you describe what you mean by Spider Technique? are we talking right or left hand? I've not heard of anything described as that, though I can think of a few different approaches to playing that would fit...

  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
  4. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK
    If it is that exercise, I'd not recommend doing it at full stretch below about the 7th or 8th fret - I've seen people playing it whilst leaving all their fingers on the fretboard for each note, and down the bottom end of the neck, the potential for wrist damage with an exercise like that is pretty high.

    Dexterity exercises should lead you to a place of increased flexibility and relaxation, not more tension and physical limitation. playing a pattern like that where you lift each finger off in turn is going to help you get across the strings, though unless you're likely to be playing runs in consecutive maj 3rds and tritones, I'd probably find a different shape... ;)

    For more on this stuff, see Michael's Hotlicks video - he goes through a whole load of permutations for fingering on the neck in a four fret range (about half way up the neck), and talks a lot about relaxation, flexibility and keeping your hands healthy. It's really valuable stuff. You might not know how to use four hipshots at once by the end of the vid, but you'll be significantly less likely to hospitalise yourself through bad technique, and I know which I'd rather learn... :)

  5. ironmaidenisgod


    May 20, 2004
    It's not the exercise.

    Rob Trujillo I guess is my only contact with this technique.It's a right hand technique in which you use all your fingers(or maybe four,that is my query) so that it resembles a spider.It's a stage-show technique I think,nothing special but looks great on stage.

    BTW Steve,please take it as a compliment but from a certain angle you look like John Lennon. :D
  6. ironmaidenisgod


    May 20, 2004
    Anyhow thanks for info on the exercise as well.
  7. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    Rather than plucking with one, two or three fingers in alternation, use all four. You'll need a lot of practise to articulate it clearly (starting slowly and gradually building up speed) but it's a way of getting a flurry of notes.

    I think it relates to flamenco guitar techniques, so a bit of websearching around that theme might reveal some ideas you can apply to bass.

  8. ironmaidenisgod


    May 20, 2004
    Thanks man.
  9. dace


    Dec 25, 2000
    sydney, australia
    i heard about it 3 or 4 years ago from someone who wrote an article on it somewhere on the net. sorry i don't have the URL of that webpage anymore.

    what i do remember about it though was that it got the "spider" name because apparently when pulled off correctly the plucking hand looks like a spider dancing up and down the strings.

    i also remember that required tonnes of physical training let alone trying to use it on a musical context. the biggest problem is the pinky because its shorter and a lot weaker than your other fingers. the guy seemed to suggest doing these exercies for months to strengthen it.

    there was also suppose to be some dependencies between certain finger combinations and independence between the fingers was another issue.

    hah. i probably haven't said anything useful. oh well...
  10. ironmaidenisgod


    May 20, 2004
    If you're referring to the right hand technique then what exercises?
  11. lamarjones

    lamarjones Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2002
    Raleigh, NC
    I saw that off of harmony-central, a technique to get all 5 fingers to rip off 64th notes or something? And the dude had some finger taping to force some of the exercises or something.

    I reduced to to 4 fingers instead of 5, so I could continue the motions easier, but I still suck at it. three fingers for the triplet feel, four for the 'multiple of 4' feel.