#1
I got my bass fixed, now I can play it,

question about fingerpicking,

How hard should I hit, sometimes my nails on finger(they are short) hit the string making it louder, that's not supposed to happen right?
#2
When you use your finger to pluck the string, your finger should always pull through the string, and land on the string below it
(If you are plucking the A, D, or G String).
When plucking the E, just pull through the string like you normally would.

If you use proper plucking technique, I don't think you should be hitting your nails, if they are short. Not that your nail hitting the string is any problem, if that is how you prefer to play, or that is what feels comfortable and sounds good to you, then do whatever you feel is comfortable.

You can pluck as hard as you want, using a soft touch, or really digging in will create a large change.

Hopefully I answered your question.
#3
How hard you should hit simply depends on how aggressive a sound you want. For an acoustic song I'll usually play with a soft touch, for a lively powerful rock song I might really dig in. For most songs, I'll be somewhere in the middle. There's no black & white right & wrong, use your own judgement and play for the song.

Digging in can often sound almost like you're playing with a pick, but more "natural" sounding. You've to make sure, however hard you're playing, that you play with a consistent velocity. This can be tricky at first, especially if you're playing aggressively, but as with everything it comes with good practice.

Regarding nails, ordinary practice is to keep the nails cut short and not hit the strings with them. If your nails are short and you're still sometimes hitting with them, your technique is off. You want to be making contact around the upper end of the pad of your finger rather than the tip.

Some bassists with more "unorthodox" approaches to their playing have been able to incorporate nails for a more trebley pick-like tone, but it's not the "norm" (not that there's anything wrong with it).
Last edited by Ziphoblat at Jan 6, 2012,
#4
Quote by Zeletros
I got my bass fixed, now I can play it,

question about fingerpicking,

How hard should I hit, sometimes my nails on finger(they are short) hit the string making it louder, that's not supposed to happen right?

Hit as hard as you want. It's all about the tone you want to get. Just learn to be efficient about it so you don't tire yourself fingers out. That means don't make unnecessary movements with your hand and fingers.

As for your nails, lower the angle you're contacting the string at.
#5
Quote by Ziphoblat
How hard you should hit simply depends on how aggressive a sound you want. For an acoustic song I'll usually play with a soft touch, for a lively powerful rock song I might really dig in. For most songs, I'll be somewhere in the middle. There's no black & white right & wrong, use your own judgement and play for the song.

Digging in can often sound almost like you're playing with a pick, but more "natural" sounding. You've to make sure, however hard you're playing, that you play with a consistent velocity. This can be tricky at first, especially if you're playing aggressively, but as with everything it comes with good practice.

Regarding nails, ordinary practice is to keep the nails cut short and not hit the strings with them. If your nails are short and you're still sometimes hitting with them, your technique is off. You want to be making contact around the upper end of the pad of your finger rather than the tip.

Some bassists with more "unorthodox" approaches to their playing have been able to incorporate nails for a more trebley pick-like tone, but it's not the "norm" (not that there's anything wrong with it).


That is a terrific explanation As Ziphoblat said, some artists choose to use their nails. I once heard that during the recording of Iron Maiden's Virtual XI album, Steve Harris kept his two plucking finger's nails a little lengthy because he liked the sound, but I'm not sure how factual that is.

And how short are your nails? I keep mine itty bitty and trim once or twice a week, if that help.
Smoke 'em 'til ya die.
#6
Just have a consistent, natural finger plucking strength. This comes with practicing your technique.
Main Basses:
Warwick RB Corvette 5
Douglas Sculptor 825 NA Fretless 5


Main Rig:
Sansamp>GK Backline 600>2 GK BLX 210 Cabinets