Tip: Think hand position, not fingers.

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by IamGroot, Jun 11, 2019.

  1. IamGroot

    IamGroot Inactive

    Jan 18, 2018
    One way to simplify playing complex passages is to focus on where your hand position needs to be on the neck, rather than focusing on the fingers. This approach should be 2nd nature to upright players and classical guitar players. I started doing this when playing Bach, but it is very useful for guitar and sax solos as well as that bass line for "Hysteria"

    You do need to invest some upfront time analyzing the score to find the best positions for a given measure. The results may change the way you play bass. Use pencil, as you will probably see better fingering approaches as you get more experienced.

    Here is a mark up of the first measures of Charlie Christian' s solo on "Solo Flight". Charlie preferred solos that soundef like horns,rather than guitar, so his note choices and fingering were very different .
    than the norm.

    The roman numeral refers to the position i.e. location of the index finger.

    Good luck.

    20190610_234756.jpg 20190610_234756.jpg
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
    tonym and Fergie Fulton like this.
  2. IamGroot

    IamGroot Inactive

    Jan 18, 2018
    Also, when walkng, think hand position as better positions for covering a given group of note choices. For example:

    Based off E String
    A maj pentatonic : II
    A Major or Lydian: IV
    A minor or minor pentatonic: V
    Fergie Fulton likes this.
  3. bluemountainfog


    Aug 14, 2011
    This makes sense, I think I've actually done this unconsciously when trying to learn demanding parts. Some passages are just easier on another bit of the neck.

    I've never thought about deliberately mapping out and notating where to put my hands though, I'll give it a try!
    IamGroot likes this.
  4. IamGroot

    IamGroot Inactive

    Jan 18, 2018
    Let me know how it works out for you, please.