Re: Derek Roddy here!
The finger on top of the stick is simply for sound.
By putting my finger up there....the stick "mutes". This creates a note with slightly more attack and less sustain.
It's not something I "worked" on but rather, something that developed over time to achieve a certain sound.
I don't always do it, it's more of a natural reaction to not being able to hear very well...Like when wearing earplugs, or having a crappy monitoring system.