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#1
OK FIRSTLY, this is not a debate thread trying to cause arguements.
SECONDLY, i did use the search bar

So im primarily a guitarist, have been mucking around on a friends bass a bit lately and am now gonna make the leap to learn bass.
So the thing i want to know, Will playing with a pick hold me back at all?
I will be playing metal and metal only

Thanks
Quote by Shea Donoghue


Then, about two minutes later of just plowing, I can feel it coming. She's still moaning and rolling back, and then I pull out. I grab her by her hair, pull her head up, and yell out:
"BOOM, HEADSHOT!"
#2
Quote by xblack_sabbathx
OK FIRSTLY, this is not a debate thread trying to cause arguements.
SECONDLY, i did use the search bar

So im primarily a guitarist, have been mucking around on a friends bass a bit lately and am now gonna make the leap to learn bass.
So the thing i want to know, Will playing with a pick hold me back at all?
I will be playing metal and metal only

Thanks


In this case, i don't think it will hold you back, but if you really want to learn bass, you might wanna try without. If your just switching for a little bit 'cause your bandmates forced you to, then just use a pick
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#3
Quote by xblack_sabbathx
Will playing with a pick hold me back at all?
Depends whether you will be playing exclusively with a pick or not. If yes, it's a possibility, even if you only play metal. You should use the technique that creates the sound you prefer.



stratkat
#4
yeah..well i think im going to go with a pick, might end up learning to use fingers but not at this stage.
Quote by Shea Donoghue


Then, about two minutes later of just plowing, I can feel it coming. She's still moaning and rolling back, and then I pull out. I grab her by her hair, pull her head up, and yell out:
"BOOM, HEADSHOT!"
#5
Using a pick is just a different technique, you won't be any worse off then someone who uses their fingers exclusively. While I would say that any well rounded bassist should at least know how to use both a pick and their fingers, using only a pick should not be detrimental to your learning
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#7
Quote by TheTortured
learn fingers and pick. they'll both help you out.


I wouldn't say that using only a pick is going to make you an inferior bassist, but learning fingerstyle will definitely make you a better bassist.

More tools at your disposal can only help you.
#9
Experiment. Using a pick is just a means to an end. Listen to other bass players (both pick and finger players), and determine what kind of a sound you want.

a bit unrelated. But it's nice to see that so many people have stopped bashing pick players, I remember just a couple years back in any forum bassists would insult pick players. It's good to see that more players are using their heads these days.
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#10
Since you play metal, if you plan on playing a lot of blisteringly fast 16th-note runs, a pick may be the way to go. It is one reason why so many metal players use them. It also gives you a more aggressive sound, but you may need to tone the dynamics down a bit with the judicious use of a compressor.

Go with what sounds and feels right for you.
#11
Personally I think you should use your fingers.
Using a pick will hold you back because it will be too hard to think of it as another instrument. You'll end up just playing the root notes of guitar lines.

Start from scratch with your fingers and work it up to an acceptable degree. If you don't like it, you know you can always fall back on the pick, because you should already be quite proficient with it.
#12
Metal....use a pick. Both are good techniques, i like finger style but i find i can use finger style for any genre, if you want smooth playing then picks are deffinately NOT good, but since youre only doing metal then there is no need to learn finger technique, its generally helpful but for metal you dont need it
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#13
Funny this question should come up: I was thinking today of how playing with a pick is actually difficult in case of some tricky stuff. Justin Chancellor's lines are perfect examples of this because they are really difficult using a pick (and, in some cases actually easier with the fingers). With complicated mid tempo lines such as Justin's, using a pick can be difficult. Picks are great for really fast 16th note tremolo style playing, e.g. Tom Araya/Frédéric Leclercq. But I'd advise you to develop both styles. Then use as per requirements of tone or speed.
#14
Learn both, and then use the one with the tone that sounds better to you. I play mainly metal, and I only use my fingers, and it sounds badass!

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#15
Quote by Casketcreep
Using a pick will hold you back because it will be too hard to think of it as another instrument. You'll end up just playing the root notes of guitar lines.


see? we do still have close minded bassists here. usually i use a pick, mainly for tonal purpose. but does it hold me back?? no. your playing style doesn't effect your creativity. the only reason he would end following root notes is because he decided to himself, rather than thinking up a complex bassline that doesn't completely follow the guitar. it's HIS choice to do that. not his fingers or his pick. i also use fingers sometimes still, but it doesn't make me anymore creative than i would be using a pick
#16
Well said roundwoundsound. If anything I'm more creative when I'm using a pick.
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#18
Symphony, mind elaborating as to how it will hold TS back?
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#19
Quote by Vampire 255
Symphony, mind elaborating as to how it will hold TS back?


nah, he's got nothin'
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#20
I think that playing metal with a pick is all about how fast you can play with your fingers and how fast you need to play. I hate the sound of a pick for my songs. And if I can't play fast enough, like if we hit 4 notes on the same fret, then I'll just cut it in half so I just play 2. Still sounds good, keeps me from having a bad sound [ in my opinion.] But I've found that 95% of the time, I can keep up.
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#21
Using a pick has nothing to do with it being metal. Cliff Burton, all fingers. Using a pick just gives you a different attack. I wouldnt say sticking to just a pick will hold you back but I would learn both. Just as in guitar you can finger pick or play with a pick. It more depends on the sound your going for. It has nothing to do with speed or a music genre. You definitely cant slap with a pick, only draw back I can think of.
#22
Play what accomplishes what you need to do. If you need the pick sound, use a pick. If you need the finger sound, use your fingers. If there's a discrepancy between the two skills, use whatever is necessary to create the best line.

Plenty of bassists use both depending on the song.
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#25
a lot of metal bassists use picks but it will sound similar (i think better) if you learn to use your fingers
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#26
LEARN TO SLAP!!!!

I joke, but like many people have said, diversify. Learn it all and use what is needed at a specific time.
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#27
I find it in metal that my sound often get very clacky when I use my fingers, in a not good way... The pick sound is much more grindy and defined, so for the metal genre I'd always prefer a pick. But some finger players can hold it down in metal, technique-wise, however those who does that with success often have a very smooth tone, opposed to the grindy aggressive sound coming from the usage of a pick
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#28
Quote by roundwoundsound
see? we do still have close minded bassists here. usually i use a pick, mainly for tonal purpose. but does it hold me back?? no. your playing style doesn't effect your creativity. the only reason he would end following root notes is because he decided to himself, rather than thinking up a complex bassline that doesn't completely follow the guitar. it's HIS choice to do that. not his fingers or his pick. i also use fingers sometimes still, but it doesn't make me anymore creative than i would be using a pick


Actually, he has a point. It isn't because it's a pick, but because it's playing the same way as a guitar. Forcing yourself to play as differently as possible makes you really treat them as different instruments.
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#30
When I pick my bass I use a knife, 'cause it's the only way to make picking look bad-ass.


I'm not kidding either.
#32
Ask yourself, what bass tone does this song require?

You can only get a certain sound picking and, likewise, using your fingers. I suggest you learn both.
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#33
use your fingers, its much faster and more accurate and i play mainly metal aswell, picks give the bass a really bad sound, another word of advice, i've noticed that many guitarists that transfer to bass have really bad left/fretboard hand technique, try not to bend your hands to far or you will get CTS.
#34
Quote by fumb duck
use your fingers, its much faster and more accurate and i play mainly metal aswell, picks give the bass a really bad sound, another word of advice, i've noticed that many guitarists that transfer to bass have really bad left/fretboard hand technique, try not to bend your hands to far or you will get CTS.


My dad got CTS and had to stop playing bass, it really sucked for him, so DONT do that!
#35
I'm quite sick of these threads, it won't hold you back...

Edit, at Fumb Duck, the tone a pick gets can be quite awesome. There's this little band called Tool, their bassist has a really awesome tone most of the time... Y

The problem is a lot of picking bassists chuck distortion and shit on at least in metal.
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Last edited by DeAd-RiP at Dec 23, 2009,
#36
I personally am a finger/slap guy but whatever works for you man. I asked Victor Wooten (if you don't know who he is go look him up on youtube and be amazed) this very question recently at one of his bass clinics and I am going to rip off his response: "Just as long as it grooves". At the end of the day groovin' is all the matters, do whatever you must to in order to accomplish that.
Last edited by Hgtcore3 at Dec 23, 2009,
#37
Quote by fumb duck
use your fingers, its much faster and more accurate and i play mainly metal aswell, picks give the bass a really bad sound, another word of advice, i've noticed that many guitarists that transfer to bass have really bad left/fretboard hand technique, try not to bend your hands to far or you will get CTS.


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#38
Use a pick if you like the tone. That's completely subjective.

Take the time to get your left hand technique down correctly for bass. I didn't do this when I started playing and now i have permanent(minimal but permanent) damage to my left wrist. Your elbow will be farther from your body to keep your wrist straight. Fretting fingers should be parallel to the frets or close to it.
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#40
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Whatever you feel like playing with, or whatever gets you the best tone. You don't necessarily need a pick for speed, because with enough practice, you can develop your fingerstyle technique to obscenely fast speeds. Like pretty much everything in music, it's the individual's preference.
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