How many people use the pinky?


JoR0
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JoR0
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04/13/2009 10:37 pm
hey all, just strumming around today and I noticed (not that i didnt before, but now I payed attention to it) that it took my entire hands pressure to make my pinky cover more than one string well, little fella does great for hitting single strings but I just cant easily get him flat enough. Some guitarists even forgo training the pinky altogether, so I was wondering what the general consensus around here is...

Do you use your pinky at all?
Can you bar(re) with it?
can it keep up with the other digits?
# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
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ChristopherSchlegel
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04/13/2009 11:19 pm
Originally Posted by: JoR0Do you use your pinky at all?
[/quote]
All the time.
Originally Posted by: JoR0
Can you bar(re) with it?

Absolutely.
[QUOTE=JoR0]
can it keep up with the other digits?

Absolutely.

Try this: don't use your index finger at all one day. If you play a power chord, use your middle finger and pinky. If you play a pentatonic blues lick, use your middle finger and pinky.
Christopher Schlegel
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# 2
Razbo
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Razbo
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04/14/2009 12:55 am
Most definitely. Not always well, but always used. :) You can't do some of the open chords without it for starters. And for lead, it's pretty much indispensable.
...so ever since then, I always hang on to the buckle.
# 3
hunter1801
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hunter1801
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04/14/2009 1:11 am
The pinky is usually the last one you learn to use since you can get by with just 3 fingers playing as a beginner. Its hard to get it trained, but you want it to be just as good as your other fingers. You'll start using it without knowing eventually.
# 4
ren
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ren
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04/14/2009 9:46 am
Yes, I use it as much as any of the others probably.

I second Chris' suggestion to play using your middle, ring and pinky fingers only. I used to do an exercise where I'd play a scale with those three fingers and have my index finger behind the neck. Not sure this position is very wise looking back, but it did help my dexterity at the time.

The pinky is a problem because from my limited understanding of anatomy, it shares a tendon (I dare say someone will correct me here)... so it's not easy to move it independantly. As with everything else, practice makes perfect.

Check out my music, video, lessons & backing tracks here![br]https://www.renhimself.com

# 5
KFS1972
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KFS1972
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04/14/2009 12:24 pm
I use mine a lot in my limited abilities. Without it scales away from the nut would be much more difficult.
Originally Posted by: ren

The pinky is a problem because from my limited understanding of anatomy, it shares a tendon (I dare say someone will correct me here)... so it's not easy to move it independantly. As with everything else, practice makes perfect.


I can't even attempt to correct you but I do find that interesting. On my fretting hand I cannot, no matter how hard I try, raise my ring finger more than ~1/4" while keeping the pinky down. But I can raise it by itself on my picking hand. This, and the fact that I eat and write left-handed, almost pushed me to try a left-handed guitar.

If I play something that requires the middle and pinky, I usually just let the ring lay on the same string as the pinky.
# 6
Sairys
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Sairys
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04/15/2009 7:16 am
When I first started learning scales I figured I might as well use the pinky. It wasn't until stressed it bending strings and needed to give it some rest that I realized just how much it comes into play. (I've since corrected my bad bending habits and no new injuries :D )
# 7
MatthewRuggiero
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MatthewRuggiero
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04/15/2009 10:11 am
I use my pinky, but not nearly enough.
I notice that it isn't as strong as my other fingers when I do trill type exercises.
# 8
sixpicker
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sixpicker
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04/23/2009 8:20 am
Hey Everybody,
It took a while to get my pinky to do what I wanted it to, but now I can't remember not using it. Keep working at it, and like hunter1801 said it will just kind of happen.

I use it for bars, leads, scales, sometimes I bend with it. I use it in bending combinations, even been working on using the pinky on my picking hand. It's really cool with the hybrid picking thing, guess you would call that a triple stop.

JD
# 9
Superhuman
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Superhuman
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04/24/2009 1:11 pm
I made sure to include the pinky as much as possible from the first day I picked up guitar - easy way to get started is to use it when you play power chords. That will help you to develop some fretting strength - from there moving on to lead becomes a lot easier.
# 10
sixpicker
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sixpicker
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04/24/2009 9:34 pm
I originally learned to play without using it, and then had to go back and learn to use it. I just started using it in in chords, and eventually started using it in scales, and other licks.

One good thing about it is that I can switch fingers for chord positions, and play what fits with it. I can also use other positions to move up and down the fretboard. This eventually led to being able to bend, and pull strings with every finger on my left hand.

It did take quite a while to train my pinky, but the way I learned is part of my style too. For a while I felt like this had held me back, but now I think it's made me a more versatile player.

This is an interesting topic, and I hope everyone has a great weekend.

JD
# 11
JeffS65
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JeffS65
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04/25/2009 2:26 pm
I'd said in a similar thread that I've always use my pinky in playing but I seem to have a physical 'defect' that to do '1-3-4' ascending stuff when playing lead/scales stuff. I can do '1-2-4' easily and I can do descending or pull off '1-3-4's all day long too. No mater how much practice, my pinky does this locked, uncoordinated thing that even when I spent huge chunks of drills over months, never got really any better. If I really need to '1-3-4', I use the ring finger for the '4'.

Otherwise, I use my pinky all the time. Seems unnatural not too.
# 12
oldtimehobbies
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oldtimehobbies
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04/25/2009 3:44 pm
I use my pinky all the time. Only problem that I have is my pinky in bent in towards my first finger hhahah.
I stay in the dog house its easier that way...
# 13

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