Where do you position thumb while playing?

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Where do you position thumb while playing?

Postby Damocles74 on Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:00 am

On the pickup,wrist over the arch playing freely,on a thumbrest or up on the actual beginning of where the neck meets the body?
I am a begginer and am constantly trying different thumb positionings to find a comfortable style for myself.The thumbrest is easiest but it feels like 'training wheels' to me.On the pickup sounds good but I can't go up the D and G strings quickly without my thumg falling of the little bit of leverage that the pickup offers.I like being high up by the neck/body but it mutes the tone.
I was thinking of removing the thumbrest and trying to play like John Paul Jones.
/Step down lower,into the grave/
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Postby 1953Vintage on Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:25 am

Try using the E string as a thumb rest when you play the other strings; it'll damp (i.e., "check the vibration or oscillation of") the E string, which will be just one less ringing string to worry about. Otherwise, you have to use your left hand to damp every string.

Then, you can just go free with your thumb when you play on the E string.

Conversely, some players slide their thumb to (and damp) the D when they play the G, to the A when they play the D, and to the E when they play the A. (To me, this is way too convoluted, though.)

Damping strings you're not playing is important with bass. This is probably true with guitar as well, but I don't play much guitar (and when I do, not well).

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Postby Damocles74 on Tue Feb 26, 2008 4:52 pm

Never thought about damping the strings like that but it makes sense.I'll try that next time.
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Postby Happy Face on Wed Feb 27, 2008 1:08 am

+1 to 1953's approach.

When you are playing fast, it's helpful to have an extra digit in there dampening strings.
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Postby ozsubrosa on Wed Feb 27, 2008 2:13 am

Many and all of those. Damping the "E", on the edge of the neck pup, on the edge of the neck, holding the back of a plectrum, thumbing the actual string. Positioning is such a cheap way of varying sound without going through the expense of buying all that gear. Worth experimenting with.

Oz
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Postby geoff_bell on Wed Feb 27, 2008 7:55 pm

my thumb is usually squeezing the plectrum into my fingers.
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Postby 1953Vintage on Fri Feb 29, 2008 2:06 pm

And speaking of "plectra"... :wink: ...has anyone tried the Wedgie plectrum?

They're made from a silicone-like rubber and are way too cool. They give you the fundamental of a picked note, but without the attack of a pick. Check them out next time you're at your corner music store.
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Postby ozsubrosa on Sun Mar 09, 2008 8:09 pm

Is that their Delrin EX or their Flexx? I prefer to use plectra, especially when playing live, but the idea of losing attack for certain songs appeals to me.

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