Post pictures of your... NON-drum instruments?!

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Al, DED, jer, Eddie, Homeularis, Kenny, Abe - all these drummers who play guitar or bass!

I tried for 20 years on and off to play guitar - and I have an acoustic and electric at home, but I simply can't hold down all the strings to play clean barre chords. Also, the strings kill my fingers. I learned to play quite a few songs from songbooks in that primitive noob way but it's just not my instrument.

Bass is even worse on the fingers ... I can last about 30 seconds. Drums are so much more gentle :)

PS. I agree, Eddie, Al seems to hold his booze pretty well!
 

eddiehimself

Platinum Member
Al, DED, jer, Eddie, Homeularis, Kenny, Abe - all these drummers who play guitar or bass!

I tried for 20 years on and off to play guitar - and I have an acoustic and electric at home, but I simply can't hold down all the strings to play clean barre chords. Also, the strings kill my fingers. I learned to play quite a few songs from songbooks in that primitive noob way but it's just not my instrument.

Bass is even worse on the fingers ... I can last about 30 seconds. Drums are so much more gentle :)

PS. I agree, Eddie, Al seems to hold his booze pretty well!
It takes a few months to get used to it i found but eventually your fingers harden. Well that's my experience anyway. Also drumming is still murder on your fingers, just a different part of them though ;)
 

unfunkyfooted

Silver Member
Al, DED, jer, Eddie, Homeularis, Kenny, Abe - all these drummers who play guitar or bass!

I tried for 20 years on and off to play guitar - and I have an acoustic and electric at home, but I simply can't hold down all the strings to play clean barre chords. Also, the strings kill my fingers. I learned to play quite a few songs from songbooks in that primitive noob way but it's just not my instrument.

Bass is even worse on the fingers ... I can last about 30 seconds. Drums are so much more gentle :)

PS. I agree, Eddie, Al seems to hold his booze pretty well!
i see exactly what you mean.

but being a guitarist, i looked at the problem differently. rather than seeing drums as being more gentle, i was heard to exclaim ¨PLAYING DRUMS IS MESSING UP MY FINGERS !!!!!!!!!! I CAN´T HAVE THIS !!!!!!!!! GOD I LOVE THE DRUMS, BUT IF IT´S GONNA DO THIS TO MY FINGERS.......(pant, pant, gasp bewieldered look around).....I CAN´T HAVE THIS !!!!!!!!!!!

: )

it appears to me that drumming elongates the fingers and puts a weird crimp in the hands / fingers (from smashing the sticks into the underside of my fingers) from impact - making it very difficult to be ¨on point¨ (like a ballet dancer) with my fingertips when i go to guitar.

NOT COOL MAN !!!!!!!! NOT !!!!! COOL !!!!!!!!

: )

solution: well i love the drums and can´t stop...so i:

1. massage the crimp out of my hand, stretch / flex however it works for you...
2. wait a while after playing drums before playing guitar...possibly going so far as to have guitar day and drum day

these are occupational hazards that one gets used to if one has been doing it for a while.

for example, i have gotten used to having a crescent shaped dip in my index fingernail. it´s been there since i was 15 : ) it comes from striking the strings with a pick. after the pick hits, my fingernail brushes against the string causing said crescent shaped indentation on my index nail.

now if someone from another profession were to take up guitar, or only occasionally play...AND they love their nails (like i used to up until age 15) they may be heard to say ¨OH NO, IḾ NOT HAVING THIS !!!!!!!!!! LOOK WHAT IT DID TO MY NAIL ??????????? DO YOU SEE THIS ?????????? JESUS CHRIST !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i have also gotten used to having long nails on my right hand for fingerpicking and shorter nails on my left hand. as unsightly as it may (or may not) be.

hope this helps.

also it helps to know that it takes time to learn to play with fingers on point. a ballet dancer does not start on the toes...they work up to it. same with a piano player or guitarist. we all start with our fingers flat and work up to point. no matter how many grizzled veterans scream and glare at you that you SHOULD BE ON POINT and that you HAVE NO TECHNIQUE !!!!!! and they should know better. just because someone is good at what they do....doesn´t necessarily qualify them to teach.

find yourself a gentle teacher.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
Al, DED, jer, Eddie, Homeularis, Kenny, Abe - all these drummers who play guitar or bass!

I tried for 20 years on and off to play guitar - and I have an acoustic and electric at home, but I simply can't hold down all the strings to play clean barre chords. Also, the strings kill my fingers. I learned to play quite a few songs from songbooks in that primitive noob way but it's just not my instrument.

Bass is even worse on the fingers ... I can last about 30 seconds. Drums are so much more gentle :)

PS. I agree, Eddie, Al seems to hold his booze pretty well!
I'm pretty functional. This comes in handy on the job as a quality control inspector at a plastics explosives company.

I'm currently working my way through the Rush songbook. By far the most challenging thing I've ever played on the bass is "YYZ", with the three solo breaks in the middle. A friend also just clued me into Primus' remake of Black Sabbath's "N.I.B." where Les Claypool takes on Geezer Bulter's original bass solo... wow. I'm also just picking random stuff off the iPod, and either transcribing it by ear or looking up the tabs online. I have my acoustic guitar nearby to pick out the chord structures, too. What with being on three months' paid vacation, it's like a muso's dream. I actually don't even have my drums set up right now...!

I'm reminded of what Jimmy Chamberlain said about playing Rush songs on the drums, and it's true on the bass as well: "If you could play those songs to a degree of proficiency, you knew you could play pretty much anything". While I'm not quite ready to replace Patitucci anytime soon, I am auditioning for a band tomorrow - - on bass! Knocking down those songs gives me hope to do well. Fingers crossed, and all that.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
Me and my band. Apple Macbook with GarageBand newest upgrade, Yamaha Midi and M-Audio Oxygen 8 -ll. Just for tinkering.
 

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Pollyanna

Platinum Member
So ... Unfunky ... you are wondering if my barre chord issues were because of the drumming? Interesting theory ... and good point about nails ... it's a big issue for me.

Eddie, while the fingers harden, I'm not sure I want to harden my soft fingertips any more than I want to wreck my nails lol ... no, I'm not a princess, just been single for over a year :)

I do remember having some nasty blisters on my thumbs while gigging on drums back in the 80s when the stage monitors were being unkind, but these days in my laid back band I'm just doing tappity-tap and barely even break a sweat (as opposed to the 80s, being blinded by the sweat pouring into my eyes). I played keys in a couple of little bands a few years ago but had to go back to drums because it was killing my fingers ...

Good luck with the bass audition, Al! Will this be the acid test for the Rush theory? :)

As for the thread, I also have a range of percussion toys at home. When I was young and living with my parents I had access to my sister's neglected piano and clarinet, which were fun to dabble on.

I've always loved messing around with other instruments and can usually get a serviceable sound ... apart from bowed instruments, from which I've only ever extracted noises than range from sick-cat to fingernails-on-a-chalkboard ... hmm, maybe well qualified for a violinist spot in an experimental music ensemble ...
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
Al, DED, jer, Eddie, Homeularis, Kenny, Abe - all these drummers who play guitar or bass!

I tried for 20 years on and off to play guitar - and I have an acoustic and electric at home, but I simply can't hold down all the strings to play clean barre chords. Also, the strings kill my fingers. I learned to play quite a few songs from songbooks in that primitive noob way but it's just not my instrument.
Honestly this is still the most difficult part for me.

I'm amazing at my guitar playing friends who's finger seem to glide over the strings and make all thee great sounds with barely pressing the strings. Meanwhile, I have to press so hard to get a clean sounding chord!

But like anything else, practice, practice, practice. I took some lessons for a little while as well.

I've also found some guitars are more forgiving than others. I borrowed a buddies acoustic, and I couldn't play the thing to save my life. The strings were set high, and it was a pain to fret. But after an hour on that, I picked my normal guitar, and suddenly playing my guitar seemed like a breeze. Another buddy brought over his electric, and I found certain figured were easier to ply on his guitar than mine. Necks, frets and string sizes really all play into ease of use.

Still, over all, I don't consider myself accomplished on guitar. I wouldn't go join a band as their guitarist. Not at least without a lot more lessons.
 

eddiehimself

Platinum Member
Eddie, while the fingers harden, I'm not sure I want to harden my soft fingertips any more than I want to wreck my nails lol ... no, I'm not a princess, just been single for over a year :)
Join the club. My 4th anniversary of being single last month lol. It was not a proper "relationship" by any means but certainly the closest thing to it for me to date. Sorry, I don't want to turn this thread into a 4 yorkshireman sketch or anything! I am only 19. All of my friends just got lucky so far I guess... I personally really like girls of the bass playing variety, I could really do with one in my life. I really am a "hands" sort of guy but far from being very particular about perfectly manicured nails and all that I do actually really like hands that have seen a good few hours on a bass in their time. Short nails don't really bother me either. You shouldn't let things like that bother you. At the end of the day if people like you, they like you. If they don't they don't. That's the way I look at it but then again as you can see I'm probably not the best person to ask for relationship advice :p
 

jer

Silver Member
I've also found some guitars are more forgiving than others. I borrowed a buddies acoustic, and I couldn't play the thing to save my life. The strings were set high, and it was a pain to fret. But after an hour on that, I picked my normal guitar, and suddenly playing my guitar seemed like a breeze. Another buddy brought over his electric, and I found certain figured were easier to ply on his guitar than mine. Necks, frets and string sizes really all play into ease of use.
It's unfortunate that a good handful of entry level instruments are like you mentioned above, DED. Setup horribly and hard for beginners to play for very long without getting hurt.

The action is quite nasty on the banjo my GF got - she stops playing after about 5 minutes and curses me for being able to play pretty much indefinably. Realize how much I took it for granted that since a young age, I've always had at least a beat up old acoustic, often missing a couple stings around to make noise on. I really don't remember ever getting blisters like I did when I started playing drums.

Classical guitars with nylon strings are (imo) a breeze, to play. I'd recommend one to anyone who wants to give it a go without killing your fingers. (Although you still need fairly short nails...)

Me and my band. Apple Macbook with GarageBand newest upgrade, Yamaha Midi and M-Audio Oxygen 8 -ll. Just for tinkering.
Mmmm... your band is much younger than mine:



I imagine your drummer is a better timekeeper than mine!
 

unfunkyfooted

Silver Member
So ... Unfunky ... you are wondering if my barre chord issues were because of the drumming? Interesting theory ... and good point about nails ... it's a big issue for me.

Eddie, while the fingers harden, I'm not sure I want to harden my soft fingertips any more than I want to wreck my nails lol ... no, I'm not a princess, just been single for over a year :)

I do remember having some nasty blisters on my thumbs while gigging on drums back in the 80s when the stage monitors were being unkind, but these days in my laid back band I'm just doing tappity-tap and barely even break a sweat (as opposed to the 80s, being blinded by the sweat pouring into my eyes). I played keys in a couple of little bands a few years ago but had to go back to drums because it was killing my fingers ...

Good luck with the bass audition, Al! Will this be the acid test for the Rush theory? :)

As for the thread, I also have a range of percussion toys at home. When I was young and living with my parents I had access to my sister's neglected piano and clarinet, which were fun to dabble on.

I've always loved messing around with other instruments and can usually get a serviceable sound ... apart from bowed instruments, from which I've only ever extracted noises than range from sick-cat to fingernails-on-a-chalkboard ... hmm, maybe well qualified for a violinist spot in an experimental music ensemble ...
yup, that´s what i´m saying.

i have a friend who´s a trumpet player and he describes the same phenomenon in going from trumpet to guitar. apparently the trumpet technique bends his hands out of shape for guitar. he´s the one who prescribed massaging the fingers back into normal shape and possibly alternating days (in some fashion). and it works.

as for barre chords...they are tough to master anyway. it may take five or six years to get the barre chord down, but there are inversions and things that you can do to get around that - different voicing that omit this or that from the barre - (co--incident-ly impacting and emphasising your flow at the moment).

and don´t be afraid to use the thumb. i know (so called) purists will say not to use the thumb. but check out any jazzer. and check out any blues man. whatever you´ve got...throw it at that neck and squeeze out those notes. and check out a book of jazz chords sometime - check the designations for finger placement: T / 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / Barre etc. if you can´t make the barre throw your thumb across the neck to get the low string. there are some chords that can ONLY be made by using the thumb.

back to drums. oh the blisters are HORRIBLE !!!! as a guitarist, i´ve always taken good care of my hands. wash frequently. stretch. but the BLISTERS and CALLOUSES and the JOINT ACHE of playing drums is INDESCRIBABLY HORRID. BONE SHAKING ain´t the word for it. so i drum until my back aches and then i can´t play drums for at least three days.

but if you massage that crimp out of your fingers / hands and / or wait a coupla days or so, you´ll be making barre chords and your fingers will be on point (fingertips) in a year. playing 2-4 hours a week. same for keyboards.

the important thing with any instrument is...don´t stop. if you don´t stop, i promise you will get there. you don´t have to bang your head against the wall to get it...just keep plugging at it. it will come to you.

also, as mentioned, it is very important to find the right neck (width / radius*) / string gauges / body weight balance / control placement / etc.

Choosing A Guitar:

as for instrument choice...i´m 5´ 10¨ with (supposedly) nice long skinny fingers. whatever. i like em. but i too have trouble making barre chords. so i prefer smaller scale guitars (24¨ scale like the originally student model Fender Mustang. the 7..25 inch neck radius also helps with making barre chords. i make sure that all of my guitars have that neck radius (pretty much only found on old Fenders). to sum up: shorter scale - 24¨ Fender Mustangs, Duo -Sonics / Jaguar -and- rounder neck radius 7.25" is best. the rounder the radius the better. flatter necks like Gibson´s 12¨ radius are harder to barre. string spacing matters too. neck width matters too.

just try some short scale guitars and find one that suits you. i like the Mustang. i have an Aria Pro II that is short scale yet has 24 frets and set neck. very lightweight (as light as a Tele Thinline). unfortunately, it has a flatter neck, but i make do with that, because otherwise it´s a great guitar.
 
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GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
It's unfortunate that a good handful of entry level instruments are like you mentioned above, DED. Setup horribly and hard for beginners to play for very long without getting hurt.

The action is quite nasty on the banjo my GF got - she stops playing after about 5 minutes and curses me for being able to play pretty much indefinably. Realize how much I took it for granted that since a young age, I've always had at least a beat up old acoustic, often missing a couple stings around to make noise on. I really don't remember ever getting blisters like I did when I started playing drums.

Classical guitars with nylon strings are (imo) a breeze, to play. I'd recommend one to anyone who wants to give it a go without killing your fingers. (Although you still need fairly short nails...)

Mmmm... your band is much younger than mine:



I imagine your drummer is a better timekeeper than mine!
One new feature of Garage Band, by Apple, is the ability to synch any times that are off let's say for instruments recorded at different times. It will match the beats for all instruments. Also has piano and guitar lessons built in.
 

jer

Silver Member
One new feature of Garage Band, by Apple, is the ability to synch any times that are off let's say for instruments recorded at different times. It will match the beats for all instruments. Also has piano and guitar lessons built in.
Guess my tongue wasn't far enough in my cheek, I also have a midi keyboard and use GB on occasion myself. While I enjoy the 4-track for it's simplicity, I find GB is great for laying down ideas I might not otherwise be able to perform live to track.
 

RollingStone000

Silver Member
A couple of Instagram photos I took a few months back of my 1920's M. Schulz & Co. upright piano.





I've got a couple of guitars and harmonicas as well. I'll post those later.
 
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