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using the ring finger

Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by Funkin'_Bassist, Nov 22, 2002.

  1. I'v always been playing with my index and middle finger ( Right hande :) ) .. I think I was pretty good in that
    but latley I'v been practicing to use the ring finger with 'm ...
    so .. I am always playing with the 3 fingers ... n' am not practicin' those 2 fingers anymore ...
    my question is : should I continue practicing the two fingers together ( Index and middle ) ...
    or am not gonna use 'm alone anymore ??
  2. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    The more techniques that you have at your disposal the easier it is to creat the music that you hear in your head and feel in your soul. Inother words keep practicing 2 fingers. Addionally, check out the three finger technique of Gary Willis


    Check out the lessons entitled Right Hand #1 and Right Hand #2.

    Let me know how it is going

  3. Si-bob


    Jun 30, 2001
    Hemel Hempstead, UK
    Focusrite / Novation
    i used to play three finger technique exclusivly, thats how i learnt! and i think its great if u have the disipline and play I-M-R-M-I-M-R consistantly.... i wasn't, my 3 finger techniwue was all over the place and as a result became very awkward, so i'v gone back to 2 fingers and now i find i have a more consistant attack and can often play a lot faster. Its obviosuly based on the individual, and it seems that 3 finger wasn't for me :)
    good luck

  4. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    There is a "minimum standard" so to speak. Using one finger is just not enough. Using three fingers surpasses the standard, if you can make it work. As Simon mentioned. It is different for each of us. Personally I use two fingers and my thumb in a classical guitar style when I'm playing my chordal stuff and two fingers for all other stuff. It is sufficient to get the job done and is comfortable. I marvel at what Willis can do with his third finger, but when it comes right down to it - it is what works for him.

  5. actually, Jamerson used to use one finger(index). He smokes my three finger playing.
  6. Funkateer


    Jul 5, 2002
    Los Gatos, CA
    I come from a classical guitar background, so my RH ring finger is pretty well developed. I personally find i-m adequate for almost everything, especially the scalar passages everybody talks about when this subject comes up. For me, the value of the ring finger is to avoid awkward string crossings when playing across three strings such as an ascending root-fifth-octave pattern.
  7. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    James Jamerson sets a totally different standard. He was an amazing player. I had the fortune of seeing the world premier of Standing in The Shadows of Motown, got to meet Alan Slutsky and Bob Babbitt. What an experience. That being said, let us not try to compare Jamerson's genius with one finger with the rest of us with 2,3,4 etc.


    Telemark - does that describe your passion. It used to describe mine
  8. Funkateer


    Jul 5, 2002
    Los Gatos, CA
    Yep. Still dropping a knee. A weak handle for this site, but I try to save my creativity for my music :)
  9. lneal


    Apr 12, 2002
    Lee County, Alabama
    Jerry Scheff said once in an interview that he only used one RH finger, his "bird" finger. And he also did some amazing stuff.:)
  10. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    I was a ski school director for 15 years (up until 2001) when I just couldn't take that industry anymore

  11. 66pbass


    Dec 25, 2002
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I'm pretty new to the forums, and realize that I may be speaking heresy, but I use a combination of my fingers (usually index and middle) and a heavy pick. (P I C K being the heresy part)

    The first time I set foot in a recording studio I asked the engineer if he wanted me to use a pick or my fingers for the sessions. We were doing rock and roll stuff at the time.
    He told me that a pick sounded better on the tape, it gave a more consistent and better defined sound.
    So I still sometimes use a pick.

    If I am playing in a set that included a very wide dynamic range (very loud to very soft) I sometimes hold on to my pick on the soft songs and play with the middle and ring fingers, then use the pick for the loud, driving stuff. This lets me get a really varied sound for different styles of songs that may show up in a set.

  12. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    Not heresy - common sense. Use the tools that you need to get the sound that you want. It is really that simple. Thanks for posting and welcome to talkbass.

    Mike Dimin

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