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c'mon guys - a pick is just a tool don't slam pick players

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Posted by paige ( on October 14, 2002 at 08:28:51:

In Reply to: Re: need tips on playing with pick posted by alex pierce on October 12, 2002 at 18:59:05:

: ok first of all picks on bass sound like shit, and so do most punk band bass players, they sound scratchy and twangy... just don't do it!

This kind of stuff just bites me - a pick is just a tool in your tool box. You can use a pick and not sound like you are using one, if you have the technique down well enough. It's a matter of where you are striking the string wih the pick (move away from the bridge towards the neck to start losing the "click" sound).
As to the speed issue - use a downstroke and an upstroke - keep your arm stationary and just rotate the wrist. You can get very fast, even 16th - even 64th notes with a little practice.
If you are getting a clanky sound, turn back your treble and boost your bass tone controls. Also - if you are using roundwounds or half round strings on your bass, if you use a pick you may want to put a piece of felt over the strings at the bridge (use a little tape and tape it to the bridge). This will kill the massive amount of overtones and harmonics that roundwounds seem to generate - especially when a pick is used.
Guys - it's not the pick that is the problem if the sound is ugly - it's usually the player who doesn't understand how to use it. I have heard too many players use picks thru the years and heard the incredible tone they get to just write off picks as being bad.

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