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Do you play guitar Right or Left - Handed

Do you play guitar Right or Left-handed ?  

7 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you play guitar Right or Left-handed ?

    • Left-handed
      13
    • Right-handed
      42
    • I'm having trouble with both hands
      2
    • I play with my teeth if Hendrix can do it so can I
      2


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Hi Carol, I'll leave a reply on the other thread, I just got a small black guitar sounds quite good actually but needs a bit of soldering done on the electrics but I only paid £20 for it so no complaints.

Sorry for going off my own thread guys.

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I just got a small black guitar sounds quite good actually but needs a bit of soldering done on the electrics but I only paid £20 for it so no complaints.

Damn! You're quite a competitor - I'll have to lift my game :winkthumb:

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I play, write, do everything left handed. I sometimes hate being left handed because I have such a hard time finding guitars but the attention is good :).

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Sorry to hear about your thumb Doug, hope it gets better soon and that it isn't too painful are you just adapting the way you play or resting altogether.

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Sorry to hear about your thumb Doug, hope it gets better soon and that it isn't too painful are you just adapting the way you play or resting altogether.

I've had the problem for a while now. I have just adjusted my strum pattern so its not so fast on certain numbers that require a quick repetative chord change. It's really more of a nuisance than anything.

It does help quite a lot when I have a couple of days rest. I don't get any problem with the majority of songs. But if I'm on a single chord strum, like Dmin on the end shuffle in Peter Greens "Black magic woman" I move my fingers on and off the chord, it really burns then. But believe me it will take a lot more than this to stop me. Thanks for your concern mate.We have a young 15 year old lad who stops playing as soon as his hand aches. So at 55 I think I'm doing OK. :smilinguitar::isaynothing::smilinguitar:

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A few thoughts inspired by other thoughts above:

1. The nuns did not let anyone use their left hands at our school either. I found out about age 30 that I am left-handed. I had suspected this at a young age because as a drummer my left hand did not slow me down or hurt my quality, but I never put any real thought to all the things I do left-handed. (Water faucet, beer can tab, card playing, and several others.)

2. If guitar playing is an art, I'm at the paint-by-numbers stage right now.

3. I would think a left-handed guitarist would have an advantage by playing right-handed because (to a paint-by-numbers artist) chord forming and lead-fingering are much harder than strumming. Now when it comes to finger picking then I guess it becomes even.

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A few thoughts inspired by other thoughts above:

3. I would think a left-handed guitarist would have an advantage by playing right-handed because (to a paint-by-numbers artist) chord forming and lead-fingering are much harder than strumming. Now when it comes to finger picking then I guess it becomes even.

Good point. I used to think that (being right handed) it would make much more sense to play the guitar _left_ handed since one could then fret with the more dexterious (is that a word?) hand. But after having played for many years, I believe that it's actually the right hand (at least for finger style) that is the most challenging.

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I'm toally left-handed. Guitar is the only thing I do right-handed. My two brothers are left-handed also and my sister. One brother plays right-handed and the other left. The left-handed one plays a right-handed guitar upside down. Sister doesn't play.

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Switch over, Doug! I did and although it's a challenge, at least you can practice/play as long as you want every day. And it keeps your brain growing (or at least stops it shrivelling).

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Switch over, Doug! I did and although it's a challenge, at least you can practice/play as long as you want every day. And it keeps your brain growing (or at least stops it shrivelling).

Well I'll try Carol. but I just stay away from 12 bar. because that really does burn my hand. I've changed my style to more country and folk. I still play rock and roll but I always get the other guitarist to bail me out. As my as my brain shrivelling,,,, TOO LATE.:laughingg::smilinguitar:

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Be warned Doug - when you switch it seems totally impossible - exactly like when you first started - it's actually really interesting as it takes you back to...whenever.

Also, the biggest risk to success is thinking it's impossible. And also, remember you can still always play right handed as well when you can. It can be like 'adding something' to your playing and not necessarily abandoning everything you've achieved as a righty.

Another disadvantage is that your guitar collection will grow depending on whether you stick with it or not. I play 90% lefty now, and when I play righty I use open tunings - because it was my fretting hand that was the problem - and that reduces the strain on my left hand thumb with less fretting. Barre chords as a righty are still out of the question though which is a big disadvantage in open tunings.

However, depending on what sort of activities aggravate your crepitus, you might find that trying to fret with that hand may make it worse! Hopefully not.

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Be warned Doug - when you switch it seems totally impossible - exactly like when you first started - it's actually really interesting as it takes you back to...whenever.

Also, the biggest risk to success is thinking it's impossible. And also, remember you can still always play right handed as well when you can. It can be like 'adding something' to your playing and not necessarily abandoning everything you've achieved as a righty.

Another disadvantage is that your guitar collection will grow depending on whether you stick with it or not. I play 90% lefty now, and when I play righty I use open tunings - because it was my fretting hand that was the problem - and that reduces the strain on my left hand thumb with less fretting. Barre chords as a righty are still out of the question though which is a big disadvantage in open tunings.

However, depending on what sort of activities aggravate your crepitus, you might find that trying to fret with that hand may make it worse! Hopefully not.

Carol your an absolute diamond and you have always been a good encouragement to everyone. and I would certainly heed your advice. Thats as soon as I managed to get hold of a left hand guitar.. The crepitus isnt nice and takes a couple of minutes to settle after certain tunes, but thankfully I steer away from those tunes as much as I can...:):smilinguitar:

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I started by buying an $80 (~35 pounds) new (!) acoustic/electric on ebay and then restrung it in reverse to see how I went - any intonation errors were not the biggest issue!

After a while I restrung my nylon string guitar with it's straight bridge, and reversed the bridge and nut - easy to do as I found out. Then I bought a decent, but not good, real lefty acoustic/electric for 500 pounds. Then I bought a real lefty 100 pound electric. Then I bought a bigger house - no, not really but I have a lot more guitars than I planned.

I still kept my good righty acoustic electric Takamine - won't ever sell that one and I still play it in open tuning and in moderation.

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Well I thought I had come with a good topic what handed are you and what way do you play, when I saw this one, although I was going to have different choices for the poll I thought I'd just add to this one.

I play left handed but with a right handed guitar upside down.

I was wondering if any one else on the forum plays this way.

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I just re-read through this thread and there was someone back a bit who does it that way. Haven't heard of anyone else on this forum.

I do know that Geofrey Oryema, who is blind, and Elizabeth Cotton who wrote Freight Train play that way. I think both of those people only had access to right hand guitars when they were kids, (kid!), and just started making music any way they could.

Why do you play that way?

I tried it briefly when I switched, but there is the problem of the thumb not playing the bass notes, and any arpeggios go from high to low - very weird.

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I guess for similar reasons.

I started playing on an old nylon a just picked it up naturally left handed. if I had had lessons I guess i would have been directed to either playing right or restringing, but I self taught and just enjoyed making sounds and didn't no better in the beginning.

maybe it was stubbornness or just the normal adapting leftys do.

it did allow me to play other peoples guitars were ever I went which is cool.

there are a bunch of lefties who play this way including

Albert King, Otis rush, Dick Dale. there are others too, probably not as well known as these guys, Elisabeth cotton as you said, and she was the first along with Albert king I learned of. and knowing she could play and wrote freight train was a bit of a catalyst to keep on in this way ( though I still cant play freight train very well.)

Maybe the best one though is Eric Gales who plays this way even though he's right handed. H e just naturally learnt this way of his brother Little jimmy king. he has another brother who also plays the same way.

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How do you get over the thumb not playing the root bass notes though? Do you use your index finger instead? And how do you strum? It sounds weird if the upstrokes are all down strokes - well it did when I tried it.

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I'm toally left-handed. Guitar is the only thing I do right-handed. My two brothers are left-handed also and my sister. One brother plays right-handed and the other left. The left-handed one plays a right-handed guitar upside down. Sister doesn't play.

I missed that one , so we're up to two nearly enough for a support group:smilinguitar:

I usually use the middle finger,sometimes the ring finger.

with strumming I do it a a few ways.

I ever strum with the wrist or do mini strums with the thumb while picking bass notes(I think that explains it). I guess the upstroke gives you a bit of a jazz sound but I can start on the or down

I'm always contemplating restringing and wanting to play finger style is a strong reason for that. I met a Guy a couple of years ago who used to play the same way but changed, and suggested I do the same. I think on on the verge of changing, I recently got a lefty bass so we'll see.

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I am left handed in everything but hockey sticks and golf. Started messing around with a right handed guitar when I was a kid and learned a few chords. I started again recently, I didn't even give it a thought until after I bought a right handed guitar and it was too late. Sometimes I wonder if I should switch but it seems like too much work to start over again.

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I

I think on on the verge of changing, I recently got a lefty bass so we'll see.

You're a gonna! When I switched the hardest thing was to get my brain around was which were high and which were the low strings. I worked out that keeping in mind that the highest string is nearest to the floor really helped.

Reading chord shapes are another challenge, but after a while I was reversing them automatically in my head. Same with watching right handers play, now I switch/reverse/interpret what they're doing without even thinking about it, more or less. It's like when right-handers watching other righties play front on, you reverse it automatically to know what they are doing. It's just the same but different for a lefty.

Getting my fingers to do what I wanted was another challenge altogether - still a work in progress!

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I am actually ambidextrous like Michael Angelo Batio or Herman Li. Don't expect me to be playing a doubleneck like MAB anytime soon though.

I am predominantly right handed so I play right handed but I can write and use chopsticks with my left hand.

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