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#1
Ok, how many of you play a majority of the time with your thumb wrapped around the neck sitting there or acutally muting strings? Is there anything wrong playing like this?

I know it is 'technically' not the correct way to play but is it just a preference thing?
#2
my thumb hangs over the top of the fret board at times. it's probably not proper but it's what feels comfortable to me, hasn't hindered my playing in anyway so far.
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#3
Mine's sitting mostly on top of, and a bit below the skunk stripe on my strat's neck. The only time it moves is for a song where all I play are open chords or when I need more leverage on a bend. Orhterwise it mainly sits in the back.
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#4
Sometimes I bend my thumb over my neck and play notes on the low E if need be. Even slides and stuff.
#5
what do you mean it's not "technically" the right thing to do?

there are no rules for guitar, if it's a matter of personal preference, then for you it's the right thing.
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#6
Quote by les_paul_01
what do you mean it's not "technically" the right thing to do?

there are no rules for guitar, if it's a matter of personal preference, then for you it's the right thing.




I only have my thumb over the neck to get more leverage while doing big bends while playing blues and the like. Most of the time it sits right in the middle of the neck about parallel with my middle finger.
#7
I do it if I know im gonna be bending it gives your more leverage for your bends
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#8
yeah i disagree that it isn't the "correct" way to play because there are some songs that you have to use your thumb to play bass notes on the low E. example: john mayer - neon. i use my thumb a lot and can now actually play the A string if i want/need to
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#9
I think Jimmy Page plays with his thumb over. If it feels good and it sounds good then why not?
#10
I keep mine over because I often play Jimi Hendrix/John Frusciante style Barre Chords i.e. Thumb on Root note on E-string, instead of Index finger.

But I pull it back when playing regular power chords and such, so both.
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#11
I donn't honestly think there is a right way to play guitar...I mean you can play anyway you want really. There's a guy who plays with his feet...I mean damn.

Either way ,I sometimes use my thumb to play a bit of rhythm on the E string.
#12
I play Tears in Heaven with my thumb. Hell, I also play Same Direction by Hoobastank with my thumb.

I put all my little digits to work.
#13
Thumb over, always... except for power chords and chords with roots on the A string.
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#14
I'll also use my thumb to mute the low E string while playing some open chords (mostly when there's some overdrive involved).
#15
I rarely put it over, with open chords or some bends. Over the neck can give you more feeling and better vibrato and more accurate bends but behind is better for stretches and almost all other techniques.
#16
Quote by JD Red LP


I only have my thumb over the neck to get more leverage while doing big bends while playing blues and the like. Most of the time it sits right in the middle of the neck about parallel with my middle finger.



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#19
Most of the time my thumb is behind the neck, though sometimes i'll wrap it around.
#21
Quote by JD Red LP


I only have my thumb over the neck to get more leverage while doing big bends while playing blues and the like. Most of the time it sits right in the middle of the neck about parallel with my middle finger.


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#22
My thumb is basically always over except for power chords. Sometimes it seems harder to play solos with your thumb sitting on the top of the neck because my fingers are not 'propped' up on the fretboard.
#23
Quote by Tempoe
I rarely put it over, with open chords or some bends. Over the neck can give you more feeling and better vibrato and more accurate bends but behind is better for stretches and almost all other techniques.

Haha, so putting your thumb over the neck gives you more feeling?
This feeling crap is absolute bullocks.
#24
My thumb is never over the neck. I guess you're all doing it wrong.
#26
I don't even notice it most of the time. I usually use it to mute the E string, but besides that and a few other cases it is usually behind the neck. It has become so instinctual to me that I honestly don't even notice it anymore.
#27
I did for 6 years.

New guitar teacher forces me to put my hand in the classical position, and i cant do it.
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#28
Quote by James13v
Lol ur a duche, you can play guitar however you want if it works for you. Marty Friedman right to the face *SLAP*


saying you can play guitar the way you want is a bit of an overstatement.

if you play with the wrong technique you can end up with several wrist injuries.

I'm not saying that playing with the thumb is bad, I do it at times myself. But saying "you can play how you want" is VERY ignorant from a health perspective.
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#29
^Tell that to Tommy Emmanuel.

Even though it isn't technically the right way to play, I switch between wrapping my thumb around and having it on the back of the neck, because when I first started playing, I was taught to wrap it around when playing open chords, which is all I was doing at the time. That, and I have really big hands, and really long fingers, so it's quite uncomfortable for me to play with my thumb on the back of the neck all the time.
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#30
Quote by jkielq91
iv seen james hetfield do it

i do it when im playing like fret 12 and up


That's no good reason to do anything.

In my humble opinion your thumb should be entirely behind the guitar so as to avoid any stupid injuries like carpal tunnel as somebody already mentioned. I VERY occasionally use the thumb for chord inversions since somebody sometimes shows me a song and I don't bother to relearn the fingering, but that's the only time.
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#31
sometimes to play solos i wrap it
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#32
I do this all the time. It makes muting the low E string a lot easier, and it just feels more natural. I never use it to play notes on that string, though; that just feels weird for some reason...
Last edited by Fox McKalen at Feb 23, 2009,
#33
I've been wondering about this too. I've always had my thumb on the top of the neck rather than behind it because the first couple of songs I learnt required you to use your thumb for the E string. Now I'll have to re-learn I think because I find it makes my other fingers too flat on the fretboard and they catch on other string when doing solo type stuff rather than chords.
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#34
I'm a pretty heavy blues musician and it usually stays over unless im playing rhythm. Always seems to be sort-of-right with the thumb anchored to the neck at the knuckle like when playing a barr chord.

To the classical trained guy who is bashing us for being imperfect, go learn alternate ways to play barr and do a three-step bend without popping it over. Though it is thought to be classically correct doesn't mean it is, especially with the past 50-100 years of guitar evolution introducing anything and everything that seems to break classical rules, such as distortion and altering frequencies (effects)
#35
I play both ways depending on how much presure i want to apply to the strings. I think apart from classical style the other people that seem to follow this rule are shredders. Look at SRV, Angus young, Alex Lifeson and Jimi Hendrix etc, are all these guitarists doing it wrong? I don't think so. Do what you find comfortable, you'll play better.

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#37
I do for a few genres, like funk and flatpicking blues.
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#38
It is incredibly irritating that people are using famous musicians as an example to validate their point. While I do not subscribe to either side, it is irrelevant if a famous musicians plays a certain way. It does nothing but invalidate attempts at argument by suggesting that because one musician does it, it is correct.
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#39
Quote by James13v
Lol ur a duche, you can play guitar however you want if it works for you. Marty Friedman right to the face *SLAP*


You can but your tendons may not like it. I do pop my thumb over the neck to occasionally hit notes on the low string or for really big bends/vibrato/whatever. If what you're doing works for you then by all means continue if it isn't hurting you. Try using a mix of both styles though, you can get much larger (comfortable) stretches out of the "classical" position, and easier big bends with the other way.

BTW it's "you're a douche." If you are going to resort to flinging insults over technique advice on the internet you should try to use somewhat proper grammar/spelling. Makes you look like a bit of a dumbass.

Cheers
#40
I do it.

God damn Froosh passing down bad technique, but oh well. It's part of my "style" I guess to play like that, even if I play metal.
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