Tug Bar or Thumb Rest? | The Canadian Guitar Forum

Tug Bar or Thumb Rest?

Discussion in 'Bass' started by laristotle, Oct 22, 2019.

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Tug Bar or Thumb Rest?

  1. Tug Bar

    2 vote(s)
    13.3%
  2. Thumb Rest

    6 vote(s)
    40.0%
  3. None

    7 vote(s)
    46.7%
  1. laristotle

    laristotle Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2019
    Location:
    acton
    upload_2019-10-22_5-16-17.png

    I like to plant my thumb on the edge of the pup or along the pick guard.
     
  2. sulphur

    sulphur

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2011
    Location:
    Sudbury, Ontario
    The tug bar always had me scratching my head why.
    I like the thumb rest, but can do without too.
     
  3. Granny Gremlin

    Granny Gremlin Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2016
    Location:
    Toronto - Riverside
    @sulphur the tug bar is an artifact from the earliest days of electric bass (Gibsons had them too) where a player was expected to grab it with fore/middle finger(s) from the bottom and thumb at the strings. Litterally ass backwards to what is expected now. I don't think the vote is gonna be nearly as contentious as last nights election.

    When I played more fingerstyle, I occasionally enjoyed a thumbrest, and I did put a tug bar on my vintage Gibson because it was period correct (holes were there) and a guy I knew was making accurate rosewood repros. Now I mostly play with a pick and when not shredding, anchor the edge of my hand/palm or sometimes just pinky on the bridge cover.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2019
  4. Milkman

    Milkman Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2006
    Location:
    Brantford, Ontario
    I’ll bet you’ll seldom see a tug bar without also seeing flatwound strings.

    Thumb, plus flatwounds = thud.
     
  5. greco

    greco Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Location:
    Kitchener, Ontario
    Me, plus any (non bass) guitar with flatwounds = (a bit less) thud.
     
    Budda and Granny Gremlin like this.
  6. High/Deaf

    High/Deaf Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2009
    Location:
    LM,BC,CAN
    I've never used either.

    Voted for tug bar because of the name.
     
    jb welder, Budda and JBFairthorne like this.
  7. Sketchy Jeff

    Sketchy Jeff

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2019
    Location:
    Manitoba
    i grow my right hand nails fairly long for playing guitar so when i play bass with my fingers i get a awful fingernails sound
    so i play bass with my thumb kinda like charlie christian playing guitar i imagine it's what fender had in mind with the early basses and it works great and sounds good
    but sometimes i get bugged about it by 'real' bass players
    j
     
    jb welder likes this.
  8. Granny Gremlin

    Granny Gremlin Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2016
    Location:
    Toronto - Riverside
    Nothing wrong with that; thumbing is legit if just not en vogue anymore (F the haters). That was my only point... though I must say when I am short of a pick (i.e around the house just messin - can't be bothered to go get one) I will use my fingernail as a sub - to each his own.
     
  9. Thornton Davis

    Thornton Davis

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Location:
    somewherein the 705 area code
    I don't use a tug bar but have one on each of my Fender basses along with a tug bar and a thumb rest on both of my 60's Kent basses.

    They're definitely a throw back to the 50's & 60's and very cool looking IMO.

    TD
     
  10. jb welder

    jb welder

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2010
    Location:
    Melonville, Canada
    Neither for me as I play with my thumb and am always muting with my palm. So can't really use either.
    Recently I realized how the foam mute trick would really free you up in that regard. That's how Jamerson could play so fast with one finger, he wasn't muting with his hand and it let him use his index finger almost like a drumstick.
     
    greco likes this.
  11. KapnKrunch

    KapnKrunch Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2016
    Location:
    Yes
  12. player99

    player99 Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2019
    Location:
    Ontario
    Thanks for clearing this up. I have a really old bass with the tug bar, but I never understood it. I thought maybe a lefty put it there and flip the guitar to be a left handed bass.

    Now I know.
     
  13. zontar

    zontar

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Location:
    Somewhere around here
    My basses don't have either, but on both of them I use the pickups as a thumb rest.
     
    laristotle likes this.

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