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Three finger?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by gabo, Sep 25, 2000.

  1. gabo


    Sep 25, 2000
    How can I learn this technic, anyone have excercises for it?
  2. rofga


    Sep 17, 2000
    for four finger technique - you can do the same kind of thing for 3 fingers if necessary:
    i decided a month ago to start playing with 3 fingers and just practiced, practiced, practiced without doing the exercises in the article above. 4 fingers are harder but you should manage 3 without too much hassle. good luck.
  3. gabo


    Sep 25, 2000
    OK, i will practice too, thanks
  4. SBX1


    Apr 7, 2000
    On "Progressive Bass Concept" , John Myung's video, he show three fingerstyle on various pentatonics scales.

    Isn't all here, but is a good start!
  5. brewer9


    Jul 5, 2000
    I've been using the 3-finger technique for many moon (a little Indian lingo for ya). The best way to develop it is to simply practice it o ver and over and over for years and years until its easy. You dont need "exercises" you just need to do it. Try it with simple one note driving rythms either straight or triplets. good luck!
  6. Practice quad patterns using a three finger approach. Play ring, middle, pointer, ring, middle... Don't only practice triplet patterns like this. You want to develop finger independence. The next thing to deal with is string skipping. Let the choice of which finger to use to catch that next note on the other string just flow naturally. Don't impose any "rule" to it. Whatever feels most natural.
    Practice, practice, practice.
  7. akajuve400g


    May 22, 2000
    On the four finger technique do you begin the attack with with your index finger or pinky?

    Index, Middle, Ring, and Pinky
    Pinky, Ring, Middle, and index
  8. I practiced it both ways for a while, and then came to the conclusion that starting from the pinky was smoother and more efficient, for me. I would recommend trying it both ways yourself and seeing which worked best for you. Have fun...
  9. I always see these people talking about using all four fingers. About the only reason I could see the need for that would be to pull off complex chord or arpeggio patterns. Otherwise you're just making it harder on yourself. For one, the pinky finger is too short! Way too short! You'd have to hold your hand at a less than desireable angle to even use it in the first place. If you position your hand to use four fingers on the string, you don't have as much leverage and can't play as powerfully. Two, the pinky is weak. If you want to work it out and make it stronger, go ahead. But the fact is that because of the physical workings of your tendons, the pinky is just not that useful. You're not going to acheive total independence of that finger just because of the way your hand is built.

    The only reason to use more than one finger is to allow you to play successive notes faster - meaning less time between notes. If you pluck with one finger, you can only go so fast because you have to bring your finger back up into position for another pluck of the string. If you use two fingers, while plucking with the second, you're bringing back the first, getting it ready for the next note. And while the first finger is playing that note, your second is getting ready again. When you move to three fingers, now you're just giving yourself more time to get the next finger ready to play. In my opinion, you don't ever need more time than that. I can pluck notes so fast with three fingers I don't think I'll ever be able to get my left hand up to that speed. If you go to four fingers, you're just slowing yourself down because the pinky is too short, too weak, and will just get in the way.

    This has been one man's opinion.
  10. Dragonlord

    Dragonlord Rocks Around The Glocks

    Aug 30, 2000
    Greece, Europe
    Brian Gordon-tell that to John Myung!
  11. Alla


    Sep 25, 2000
    Ehm i'm not so able to play or i feel not so able for speaking of three or four finger .. but i've seen in my life a lot of great bassists like wooten , pastorius , clarke , steve bailey and only the last use more than two finger in groove or solo part . I think that also my ring finger is too short for playing faster than with two finger .
    This is my opinion .
    Bye .
  12. Rockinjc


    Dec 17, 1999
    How 'bout playing real fast with only one finger?

  13. Dragonlord

    Dragonlord Rocks Around The Glocks

    Aug 30, 2000
    Greece, Europe
    KONG,i saw him live some months ago and i think i saw him use four fingers a few times-and i am ALMOST sure i saw him do that at the fast parts of Pull Me Under (the 102 bpm 16ths).Anyway,of course i could be wrong,but i saw it!
  14. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Like James Jamerson did?
  15. You could also check out Gary Willis' video. On there he gives a detailed description and demo of his unique three fingered style. I adopted this after some hand problems and it really helped. It may not work for you but it is worth a look. At first it seems strange but it is, I think, a logical and well thought out method.

    Good luck
  16. Rockinjc


    Dec 17, 1999

    Or Stanley Clark. Maybe this needs its own thread, but after years of honing my chops as a multi-finger right hand player, I find myself quite surprised at the rhythmic complexity and speed the come out playing one fingered. Or perhaps one fingered and a thumb. I find I do this best on the steering wheel of my car. Now if I can only make notes wile I do this.

    Don’t get me wrong, as I am also a big fan of three finger picking or even four, but lately I use that mostly for raking out a fast triplet or some along the same vain using perhaps a couple of strings at once.

    What gets really scary is combining the two techniques. Playing with several fingers but also using down and up strokes with each finger and then adding the thumb. I think that gets into the realm of Stu, Victor and Michel M. Me, I can only dream.

    My .02

  17. I learnt three fingerstyle from a book on Billy Sheehan ("Super Rock Bassist"- a Japanese book I think) and used it all the time, usually in the ring-middle-index order (great for triplets and fast 16th note lines) until I noticed that my playing wasn't consistent enough in terms of tone and volume on slower songs. and I was always getting blisters on my ring finger, so now I use two fingers for the slower stuff, and three for fast stuff and string skipping (octave playing and arpeggios) and sometimes four fingers for chords.

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