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Thread: Pinky 6th fret

  1. #1

    Default Pinky 6th fret

    I find that it is sometimes easier for me to use my pinky on the 6th fret. I know you're supposed to use your ring finger and I can do that if I have my hand in perfect position but I'm just faster using my pinky.

    Is that ok or is it just a band aid to cover poor technique?

  2. #2
    Registered User Bruce Clausen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pinky 6th fret

    What notes are you playing? On the E strings, use pinky for Bb, but ring finger for A#, so as to be able to continue up to B with pinky. Etc. etc. Fingering follows the key you're in.

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    Registered User Tim C.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Pinky 6th fret

    I use either 3 or 4 finger to play 6th frets of all strings, depending on what I have to do next.
    Tim Connell
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    Registered User Bruce Clausen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pinky 6th fret

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim C. View Post
    I use either 3 or 4 finger to play 6th frets of all strings, depending on what I have to do next.
    Me too, but what I have to do next usually depends on what key I'm in. In Eb my fingers are hovering over the notes at frets 1 to 6; in A they're positioned over frets 2 to 7.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Pinky 6th fret

    This particular case is A major going from C# on the G string to E on the D string. I'm wondering if using my pinky for C# is a fault I need to overcome or just a matter of personal preference. I just find it easier with my pinky...

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    Registered User Bruce Clausen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pinky 6th fret

    Thanks for that info, campbesj. I can see how fourth finger makes for an easier reach there. And if you need the D, you can get it as an open string instead of at fret 7. But eventually you might want to work at getting your hand into a position where the normal 5-fret reach is comfortable for you. That may involve holding the mandolin higher on your chest, lowering your wrist, and getting your thumb down behind the neck. That's just a guess though.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Pinky 6th fret

    The classical rule in a diatonic context is "next note, next finger". However, in the key of A, in first position, there are five scale notes, g#, a, b, c#, d. Many times you can have the index covering both the low g# and a, e.g., sliding fom the lower note. In other cases it's better to use "half position", i.e., different fingers for the g# and the a. You will have to find out/decide for yourself. As always, it depends on what comes before and after.

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