Left hand position, noob

Hi, I just started playing a couple weeks ago and have purchased the whole course. I have played piano, violin, and still play drums. Even though I am able to already (slowly) play the chromatic scales exercise in one of your videos, I am getting quite frustrated. I just can’t seem to figure out what position to keep my left hand in. It seems to be the most comfortable with my left thumb pointing at the tuning pegs, but your videos say this is wrong (right?). I thought there would be a much more specific and explicit explanation and demonstration early on in the course but I am almost up to the Running with the Devil lesson and I still am not sure how to hold my left hand, especially without my wrist bending at crazy angles. Help! Thx


Welcome to the forum and get choice getting B2B. Have you re-watched Module 1, Lesson 4. The first 4 minutes give a good explanation and demonstration of fretting hand position.

There is no one fixed position and you’ll make adjustments as you move up and down the neck.

One thing that I don’t think is mentioned is the position of your elbow. Practice moving your elbow further forward or backward as this makes a big difference to the resulting angle of your wrist. How close you hold your arm can also impact as well as your overall position of the bass (eg high, low, with/without a strap). A lot of it comes down to personal preference.

After you’ve played around with the above, feel free to post some photos (ideally someone will take them for you).


Hi there!

Comfortable is good! For now, all you want to do is build a foundation. @iDuncan has said it well:

You can also try commenting under the lesson videos, that’s where I got a few replies from @JoshFossgreen, as it’s lesson specific.

Feel free to Introduce Yourself! (2024), too.



Got pictures or video?

Another member just posted a similar issue. Are you holding your bass neck perpendicular what’s the neck orientation?

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Welcome aboard BZ. Listen, if Rick Allen can play drums with one arm you can master the bass. Don’t get hung up on what someone tells you is the right or wrong way. If you can make the notes come out of the amp, regardless of how you do it, then carry on as you’re doing something right. Once you start playing to your satisfaction, and stop worrying if you’re doing it right, you’ll find the technique that works for you. Don’t forget Glen Campbell, one of the greatest guitarist in the world, could not read a lick of music. Didn’t stop him did it, he found a way to play and that’s all you have to do. Carry on future low ender!

Your thumb goes at the back of the neck, across from the middle of your fretting fingers and parallel to them, like you’re eating a big burger or sandwich, like this https://youtu.be/8F0pVPr4VYw?si=VVo4g32pdQTPzNRY

Many people find it’s comfortable to keep their thumb along the neck, pointing at the headstock, many people will tell you to do what’s comfortable but don’t fall into that. The correct techniques are often not comfortable at first, because they’re new and you’re not used to doing them but if you do them enough, they’ll become comfortable.

If you keep your thumb pointing up the neck, you’ll impede your ability to spread your fingers and and move around the neck quickly.

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