#1
I've been playing electric guitar for 2 years and a half. And as far as I've noticed, most of the time I've been playing with the thumb up the neck. Just like this:



And I've really always felt comfortabe with this. I'm a bends guitarist, and I think it makes kinda sense that the thumb gives me the best support that way.

On the other hand, my guitar teacher alerted me in a legatto exercise that it should be easier for me if I played like this, with the thumb back on the neck:



And it made a huge difference in therms of fluency, it sounded much more natural and fast


So, sorry if I'm being too stupid for only noticing this now, but what should really be the difference? Should I stick to what I like most? Should I use the thumb up or behind in different situations? If yes, in which occasions?


Thank you for your attention,

Sparkz
#2
Personally I've always used behind. Thats just me. But I tend to use thumb up on chords that need the thumb for because me hands cant stretch
Current Stage Gear
Ibanez 1987 RG550 Road Flare Red(66th one ever made)
HD500 Pedal
Bugera Vintage 22



Quote by metaldood91
Hi. Can someone tell me which guitars are real 24 fret guitars and which are just 22 fret guitars with 2 extra frets added on?
#3
Well my 2 cents are this.

With thumb on top of the neck you got better support and control, that is used mainly for vibrato and bending. (atleast by me)

With the thumb behind the neck i can cover larger areas of the neck and play all strings more easily, that is what i use otherwise.
#4
I do both. Just whichever is more comfortable and puts less tension into your playing, for the moment.

Unless you have magic fingers, it's impossible to play intricate runs with your thumb hooked over the neck. On the other hand, it's not really comfortable to play open chords with your thumb glued to the center of the neck, it causes tension in your fret-hand.
Quote by Duv
Oh, and for resonance just play unplugged and see if it's loud. And smack an open A chord and hold the body and see if it vibrates like a middle-aged woman's best friend.
#5
I forgot to mention that I'm 6'6 and wear size 14 shoes and have gigantic hands. And if I do thumb up, it doesnt feel correct with my hands
Current Stage Gear
Ibanez 1987 RG550 Road Flare Red(66th one ever made)
HD500 Pedal
Bugera Vintage 22



Quote by metaldood91
Hi. Can someone tell me which guitars are real 24 fret guitars and which are just 22 fret guitars with 2 extra frets added on?
#6
The thumb goes over the neck for bends and vibrato because these techniques utilize your wrist strength.
For everything else, the thumb goes behind the neck around the centre because it allows your fingers greater mobility.
Speed is a by-product of shut the fuck up.
#8
haha i just posted basically the exact same thread, i play like in the first picture, but my guitar teacher said i should try and put my thumb like the second picture for faster runs, is this true?
#9
Some things you should have your thumb up, and for other things you should have your thumb behind the neck. Like bar chords, it's easiest if you put your thumb behind the neck, using it to support your fingers. For power chords, some are easier with the thumb up.
#10
To me, it really depends. Some guitarists use their thumb to place a note on the 6th string when strumming open chords for extra flavor when their other fingers are preoccupied. Personally, when I play open chords or solo classical guitar my thumb goes like that as seem in the 1st picture. However, as soon as I go into a barre or play a lead part my thumb goes like as seen in the 2nd picture. As far as my understanding goes it isn't the best technique to do that, but it what feels most natural and comfortable to me so I've just stuck with it.
#11
Classical guitarist teachers used to hold a needle directly above the neck, so the player's thumb wouldn't ever breach the top. If you're playing classical, keep it tucked behind.

I guess blues would make sense to keep it on top, for the reasons listed above. But there's really no issue here, just switch it whenever you need to do a run.
#12
Well, it's pretty much as you stated - for bends and rock vibrato, you need the thumb over the top for leverage.

For most other things it works better if the thumb's behind the neck.

Why didn't you ask your guitar teacher about this?