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Where to stick my thumb?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Spent, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. Spent


    May 15, 2011
    Upstate NY
    I've been playing a Fender Jazz Fretless, Ric 4001 and Spector Legend for the past decade but recently bought two Spectors, another Legend and a Euro, with a PJ pickup configuration. I never realized how dependent I've become on anchoring my thumb on the pickup. The p pickup is a real challenge due to the bump, for lack of a better word, for the screw at the top. I rarely look at the bass when I'm playing and now I'm finding that when I move my right hand around it ends up on one side or the other of this bump. This has become a real nuance. I'm thinking about making a small "adapter" to make the top flat. Anyone else have a problem like this with a workable solution?
  2. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    I think a very workable solution would be to simply install a thumb rest. :meh:

  3. SidMau


    Sep 3, 2012
    Whenever I have to use a bass with a P pickup or PJ config, I usually put my thumb in the corner made between the string, screw part of the pickup, and that tiny little flat part to the left of the screw... Seems to work
  4. Look up "floating thumb technique".

    I generally rest my thumb on the string below the one I'm playing. When I play the low E my thumb just kind of sits against the body of the bass. It took some getting used to but now it feels pretty natural.
  5. revlimitbounce

    revlimitbounce Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 26, 2007
    This question invites abuse. Glad no one did so ... yet.
  6. I had my luthier make a long thumb rest for the lack of a better description.

    Attached Files:

  7. micgtr71


    Dec 4, 2012
    This is what I do. Works on every bass.
  8. wvbass

    wvbass Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2004
    West Virginia
    Very tough to keep responses PG on this one...
  9. I float from string to string, but there's always this option:


    I've seen some really nice ones on PJ basses here. Search "ramps". I love it. I'd put one on my other basses but I never play em enough.
  10. Jerryr63


    Feb 10, 2010
    This works great. I slide my thumb down across the 4th, 3rd etc. It mutes the lower strings at the same time.

    One of he keys to getting a nice clean bass tone is to mute other stings as often as possible. Especially the 3rd, 4th and 5th strings.
  11. radioface


    May 2, 2013
    Floating thumb, is the way to go.
  12. Spent


    May 15, 2011
    Upstate NY
    I saw one of these recently and it looked like a good idea. How do you like it?
  13. Spent


    May 15, 2011
    Upstate NY
    I figured the title would attract attention and a few interesting responses. :D
  14. xUptheIronsx

    xUptheIronsx Conform or Be Cast Out....

    Feb 6, 2010
    C-ville, Col, Ohio
    I do this, except on the low E, my thumb rests on the pick up.

    It's funny that I have never thought about what my thumb is doing, until I played a Ric for the first time last year. Growing up on P's and J's, I was totally lost. It was the weirdest feeling ever. Honestly, that alone stopped my immediate GAS for a Ric
  15. +1

    First two years playing I anchored my thumb. I felt so restricted, then someone showed me a grainy 3rd gen copy of the Jaco instructional video (early 90's) and I had a Eureka moment... never looked back after that, once you get used to it it's very liberating... any bass becomes a viable target ;)
  16. I generally go floating thumb. The way I play, it just feels more natural.
  17. GBassNorth


    Dec 23, 2006
    You need to buy a 5 string bass. That low B makes a great thumb rest! :smug:
  18. hsech

    hsech Work hard. My Social Security needs a raise.

    Jun 27, 2012
    Central Iowa
    I could have fun with that question but I won't. I rest my thumb on the top of the neck pickup or let it float.
  19. I find myself actually using it a lot to get different timbres. It did take effort to remember it's there. But I do like it.
  20. ModuMan

    ModuMan How many is too many? Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2007
    Bristol, CT #19
    Floating thumb is great.

    Another great position is one that Billy Sheehan uses, specifically with a P pickup. The thumb goes in the corner created by the front of the pickup and the top of the E string and also anchored against the body. Three points of contact, if you see what I mean.

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