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Right-hand Technique Archives

Percussive Techniques for Bass
Ask Damian Erskine

Percussive Techniques for Bass

For the next few weeks, we’ll be going over some more lesson oriented topics. I’m kicking off the series with a look at percussive techniques on the bass, specifically using your plucking hand. There are some easy techniques to approach as well as some more difficult ones. Work on these slowly with a metronome starting with the basic patterns before...

Applying Three-Finger Right Hand Bass Technique
Ask Damian Erskine

Applying Three-Finger Right Hand Bass Technique

Q: I love your three-fingered right hand technique. Do you have any examples of how to apply it into songs I already know? A: This week I decided to answer the question with a video. Check out the PDF to follow along with Weather Report’s “River People” and Tower of Power’s “Oakland Stroke”.

Breaking Right Hand Habits
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Breaking Right Hand Habits

Q: I have a weird technique problem. I guess at some point (to feel the groove better? keep the time? mimic the metronome?) I started landing my fingers on strings to kind of mute them between the played notes and now it began bothering me – all the clicks sound even louder on steel strings (which I prefer). The more...

Right Hand Endurance for Bass Players
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Right Hand Endurance for Bass Players

Q: I’d like to ask something about right hand endurance. I’m playing in two metal bands, so some of our songs are rather fast-paced (I play 95% of the time with a pick). When rehearsing, everything seems just okay – no problems. But when playing live, my right tends to get this irregular muscular tension, and after a short bit...

Right Hand Technique for Bassists: Expanding Your Finger Patterns
Ask Damian Erskine

Right Hand Technique for Bassists: Expanding Your Finger Patterns

Q: How do I improve my playing by using the three-finger technique and yet maintain the groove with my thumb? A: Something I’ve come across with many students is a preconception of how they want to use their thumb. With some students, this has actually stood as an obstacle to their growth. I think this is primarily because they become...

Isolating Your Right Hand: Exercises for Bassists
The Lowdown with Dr. D

Isolating Your Right Hand: Exercises for Bassists

When confronted with a difficult passage that just isn’t getting any better, most of us will isolate the left hand to improve our accuracy. We may change from arco to pizzicato to isolate the left hand. We may “shadow bow” the passage. Perhaps we may finger the strings in the left hand alone, completely taking the right hand out of...

Ask Damian Erskine, Columns

Ask Damian Erskine: Theory and right hand technique

Q: Just wanted to ask you how can I get used to using the harmonized major and minor scales when soloing or using them when I’m playing a fill. I use the relative major or minor of the key I’m playing in regularly but I cant seem to get the other scale degree’s to work. My second question is how...