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#346279 - 01/29/05 08:51 AM Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
In a recent quest to begin breaking through some speed barriers in my playing, I read somewhere that unless you learn the "thumb-over" technique, you will never be able to attain to higher speeds. In theory, every thing that was said about the thumb's vertical movement limitations, etc, were logical (I think the author was Chang?). But when I sat down and began to finger some scales with the thumb crossing over, everything ground to a halt. What am I missing here? I can't see how in the world you could cross over with this technique. I've asked several more accomplished pianists this question and each time I get the raised eyebrows...

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#346280 - 01/29/05 09:00 AM Re: Thumb Over??
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
it's basically hand shifting technique: you shift your hand over and position your thumb at the next note you play. for example, C major scale:

123(shift hand and position your thumb)1234

this is for upward scale only, on the down side, do as usual.

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#346281 - 01/29/05 09:46 AM Re: Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
Is this a recommended technique? Should I work on developing this instead of the traditional thumb-under?

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#346282 - 01/29/05 10:11 AM Re: Thumb Over??
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13759
Loc: Iowa City, IA
It's not non-traditional. "Thumb under" is actually pretty rare - only practical at slower tempi that require legato. All the fast stuff is accomplished by "thumb over" hand position shifting.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#346283 - 01/29/05 11:04 AM Re: Thumb Over??
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
So "thumb over" is really a misnomer? The idea isn't to move the thumb over the hand, but simply to just shift the thumb over to the next key, right?

This really confused me when I read about it in Chang's book, but I think I understand now.
_________________________
Sam

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#346284 - 01/29/05 11:35 AM Re: Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
So I guess I'll work on that, seeing that my issue is not being able to go fast...

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#346285 - 01/29/05 11:44 AM Re: Thumb Over??
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13759
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Correct!

 Quote:
Originally posted by pianojerome:
So "thumb over" is really a misnomer? The idea isn't to move the thumb over the hand, but simply to just shift the thumb over to the next key, right?

This really confused me when I read about it in Chang's book, but I think I understand now. [/b]
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#346286 - 01/29/05 11:50 AM Re: Thumb Over??
concertpianist12988 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/24/04
Posts: 343
Loc: NY
what the heck.......i always used my thum under technique for fast stuff. but thanks alot, now i know.
_________________________
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#346287 - 01/29/05 11:51 AM Re: Thumb Over??
concertpianist12988 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/24/04
Posts: 343
Loc: NY
is this for this for the left hand also....like in chopin's revolutionary etude???
_________________________
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#346288 - 01/29/05 11:52 AM Re: Thumb Over??
mkorman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/26/04
Posts: 180
Loc: Connecticut, USA
I don't understand the difference between these two. Can someone explain in more detail?

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#346289 - 01/29/05 12:27 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13759
Loc: Iowa City, IA
It's for both hands.

It's nearly impossible to explain but fairly easy to demonstrate. There's really only a small subtle difference between the two.

When you cross under, the thumb is directly underneath another finger at some point.

When you "cross over," the natural rotation of the wrist brings the thumb slightly up and into position for the next group of notes. (For example, in a RH E Major scale, after you play the EF#G#, the wrist rotates slightly as the elbow moves to the right, thus placing the thumb directly over the A but not directly under any other fingers...)
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#346290 - 01/29/05 12:42 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Mr Zaz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 72
Loc: New York
Interesting. I've always used thumb-under. But I guess when you play a scale very fast, it automatically becomes thumb over in a way. Anyway, doesn't it seem that you can play quicker scales thumb-under since your thumb would already be in the position? (But again, when you go fast, thumb-under kind of turns into thumb-over right?)

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#346291 - 01/29/05 12:43 PM Re: Thumb Over??
NAK Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/20/04
Posts: 2561
Loc: Canada
So that's why I always see pianist's hands raise in fast scaler passages. I was wondering what they were doing.

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#346292 - 01/29/05 01:51 PM Re: Thumb Over??
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19225
Loc: New York City
How fast should a scale be in order to require or prefer the thunb over technique? For example, which technique would be preferable for the E major scale at the end of the Chopin Scherzo in E? Does the answer to the question depend on the skill/preferences of the player? Are there gradations of technique in between the the methods?

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#346293 - 01/29/05 01:58 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Ted2 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/02
Posts: 790
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
With the right hand thumb on F# and the other fingers on A#,C#,D# and F natural respectively, and with the hand toward the rear of the keys, repeat the group upwards in a fast, smooth arpeggio. The sensation of "thumb over" is more or less forced on you because you can't get it smooth and fast any other way. Then just remember the sensation and apply it to scales and other figures.
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#346294 - 01/29/05 02:09 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Ted2 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/02
Posts: 790
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
I don't really play a lot of classical music, Pianoloverus, but as far as what I do play is concerned, yes, I find there is a gradation available for most figures.
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#346295 - 01/29/05 04:00 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Alan(Lost) Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/13/04
Posts: 56
Loc: Dublin
 Quote:
Originally posted by Kreisler:

When you "cross over," the natural rotation of the wrist brings the thumb slightly up and into position for the next group of notes. (For example, in a RH E Major scale, after you play the EF#G#, the wrist rotates slightly as the elbow moves to the right, thus placing the thumb directly over the A but not directly under any other fingers...) [/b]
I did lessons for around 8 years until around 7 years ago. I was only taught thumb under. I had tried to learn some pieces which involved fast ascending scales, like Chopin Prelude No.24, and I always hit a wall. I wondered why I could fly down a 3 octave decending scale in maybe 2 seconds, but not ascending.
Recently I read that book by that guy, 'Chuan C. Chang'. I thought that he was trying to make some joke when he talks about the thumb over. Then I read the line; "Students who have learned only thumb under will have a hard time trying to understand how anybody could play thumb over". So I'm currently trying to convert. I'm beginning to get the hang of it.
Should the wrist be rotating, leaning onto the little finger' side of the hand? Take a C major scale first 3 notes, CEG fingered 1 2 3. As we go to the 3rd finger, should the forearm rotate slightly clockwise, moving the thumb higher, but horizontally closer to it's next note?

And as for decending, somebody said that you just do it as normal. Chang says that it shouldn't be thumb under, but the way thumb-under students play, they're a bit closer to the correct movement. Opinions?

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#346296 - 01/29/05 04:01 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Alan(Lost) Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/13/04
Posts: 56
Loc: Dublin
 Quote:
Originally posted by Alan(Lost):
 Quote:
Originally posted by Kreisler:

When you "cross over," the natural rotation of the wrist brings the thumb slightly up and into position for the next group of notes. (For example, in a RH E Major scale, after you play the EF#G#, the wrist rotates slightly as the elbow moves to the right, thus placing the thumb directly over the A but not directly under any other fingers...) [/b]
I did lessons for around 8 years until around 7 years ago. I was only taught thumb under. I had tried to learn some pieces which involved fast ascending scales, like Chopin Prelude No.24, and I always hit a wall. I wondered why I could fly down a 3 octave decending scale in maybe 2 seconds, but not ascending.
Recently I read that book by that guy, 'Chuan C. Chang'. I thought that he was trying to make some joke when he talks about the thumb over. Then I read the line; "Students who have learned only thumb under will have a hard time trying to understand how anybody could play thumb over". So I'm currently trying to convert. I'm beginning to get the hang of it.
Should the wrist be rotating, leaning onto the little finger' side of the hand? Take a C major scale first 3 notes, CEG fingered 1 2 3. As we go to the 3rd finger, should the forearm rotate slightly clockwise, moving the thumb higher, but horizontally closer to it's next note?

And as for decending, somebody said that you just do it as normal. Chang says that it shouldn't be thumb under, but the way thumb-under students play, they're a bit closer to the correct movement than with ascending. Opinions? [/b]

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#346297 - 01/29/05 11:03 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Xenon Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/19/04
Posts: 138
As I understand it, the "Thumb Over" technique entails rotating your hand when it is time to do the thumb pass, in order to let the thumb come down vertically instead of move horizontally under the passed fingers(when ascending on the keyboard). A quick flick of the wrist and forearm is characteristic of the "Thumb Over" technique.

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#346298 - 01/30/05 06:43 AM Re: Thumb Over??
gordonf238 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 283
Loc: NYC
i'm practicing this very technique on the c major scale. i can be insanely fast with my right hand when descending, but ascending the scale is always slower. but i have noticed getting faster at it each time i practice. the 123-1234 thumbing becomes tricky.

it's also triky when playing a descending scale with your left hand.

practice. practice. practice.

and when you think you've practiced enough.

practice. practice. and practice some more.

repeat. :-)

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#346299 - 01/30/05 08:04 AM Re: Thumb Over??
ryan Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/04/01
Posts: 1995
Loc: Colorado
 Quote:
Originally posted by Kreisler:
It's for both hands.

It's nearly impossible to explain but fairly easy to demonstrate. There's really only a small subtle difference between the two.

When you cross under, the thumb is directly underneath another finger at some point.

When you "cross over," the natural rotation of the wrist brings the thumb slightly up and into position for the next group of notes. (For example, in a RH E Major scale, after you play the EF#G#, the wrist rotates slightly as the elbow moves to the right, thus placing the thumb directly over the A but not directly under any other fingers...) [/b]
Great description. I think of the "thumb over" as just describing the actual path of the thumb due to the rotation and shift of the hand. However, regards to the actual movement of the thumb, both "thumb under" and "thumb over" feel exactly the same to me. In both cases I draw my thumb inward toward my palm the same way. Whether it actually crosses under other fingers depends on how fast I have to shift my hand to the next position.

Ryan

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#346300 - 01/31/05 03:02 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
I too am new to this thumb over and would really like to know how to accomplish it. Like I've said before, it just doesn't translate well with the written word and I believe I'm just going to have to see somebody do in front of me.
Anyways, from all I have gathered about TO, it is basically a handshift, on C Major, play 123 and slide/shift to F for 1234. The problem I have when I do this is the transition from the E to the F sounds like a stacatto hop, there is no legato about it and if somebody could PLEASE go into detail on how to achieve a more connected transition here I will be indebted to you for life!

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#346301 - 01/31/05 08:24 PM Re: Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
OK, so I'm not alone in this quandary. I think what we all need is for someone to post a quick video, demonstrating the right and wrong way to do this technique. Anyone ambitious with a camera out there?

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#346302 - 01/31/05 09:32 PM Re: Thumb Over??
jasper_garcia Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/15/04
Posts: 172
Loc: New York
I'm no expert here, but I think if you just try to play a scale as fast as you can, you will end up not using thumb under.

Think of it as the difference between walking really, really fast, versus running. You can only "walk" so fast before you start to lean forward and start running on the tip of your feet.
_________________________
Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it. [Salvador DalĂ­]
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#346303 - 02/01/05 12:58 AM Re: Thumb Over??
ShiroKuro Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3407
Loc: not in Japan anymore
I couldn't really get Chang's descriptions, or those here!! I think I actually already use both methods, but I'm not sure about the over part. It would be great if someone could post a video!! Please! Pretty please!!

BTW for people reading here who are working on speed, if you haven't read all of Chang's stuff about speed (not just thumb stuff) I recommend it. Even if you don't follow all of his suggestions, it sort of gives you a new way to think about some things. For example the idea that you won't necessarily be able to play fast by starting out slow and gradually speeding up, because you may have hand positions/fingerings which create speed barriers in and of themselves etc.

Also his comments about the need to be relax in order to play fast seemed to finally lodge in my head even though I've been hearing basically the same thing from my teacher for years!
_________________________
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#346304 - 02/01/05 08:54 AM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
It must be like a trade secret that only members of the "club" are privy to. Sure some will talk about TO and try to explain it, but have you really ever heard anybody "who knows" explain it in detail? Nope.
Again, C major scale. 123 - CDE, now move your hand over and play 1234 - FGAB.
Please tell me how you accomplish this without the hop sound? The third finger has to remove himself from the E key before the thumb can play the F. Explain how to make this legato.

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#346305 - 02/01/05 09:59 AM Re: Thumb Over??
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
the difference between TO or TU is timing of thumb and hand shifting. TO is to shift your hand and thumb at the exactly same time, while TU is to shift/tug your thumb under palm first before hand moving along.

you're right, there is 'hop' between 123 and 1234, where you have to practice to achive the smoothness of the transition (jump as fast as you can with slight hand rotation towards right(RH)).

TO is mostly for fast scale runs, while TU is for legato playing (as mentioned by others as well). at really fast tempo, no legato is needed anyway, as long as you play every note evenly.

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#346306 - 02/01/05 10:03 AM Re: Thumb Over??
ryan Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/04/01
Posts: 1995
Loc: Colorado
 Quote:
Originally posted by Rockitman:
Again, C major scale. 123 - CDE, now move your hand over and play 1234 - FGAB. Please tell me how you accomplish this without the hop sound? [/b]
Can't be done. You have be moving your hand *while* playing the notes, not just after each group.

 Quote:

The third finger has to remove himself from the E key before the thumb can play the F.[/b]
Only when playing the scale really, really fast. At slower tempi the notes should be overlapped for a legato sound.

 Quote:

Explain how to make this legato. [/b]
Again, either play it really, really fast or use the legato playing technique of overlapping the notes.

Side note:

I personally don't like the term "thumb over" because it makes it sound like (in my mind at least) the thumb should be raised higher than the other fingers. While my thumb has a definite up and down movement, it never raises above the bottom finger 2 (index).

Ryan

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#346307 - 02/01/05 10:53 AM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
"TO is mostly for fast scale runs, while TU is for legato playing (as mentioned by others as well). at really fast tempo, no legato is needed anyway, as long as you play every note evenly."


That, my dear, is THE problem!!!!

I cannot play the notes evenly. In the C major scale, the E sounds like a stacatto note before the F is played. HOW DO I FIX THAT???????????

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#346308 - 02/01/05 11:12 AM Re: Thumb Over??
Varcon Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/15/04
Posts: 1931
Loc: Mount Vernon, Georgia 30445
The term, 'Thumb Over,' seems really stupid to describe this movement. It sounds like the thumb has to go OVER the other fingers and that's REALLY, REALLY awkward.

In scales I use the thumb under but I prepare it so that when the second finger plays it moves simultaneously to its next note and there is no break in the legato. It does take some conscious practice to acquire this tho.

Arpeggios are played with a 'lightning quick' movement of the thumb to the next position. At slow speeds there is a gap but at fast speeds it is not. And, sometimes words are inadequate to describe what is needed and then the 'force of example' must be used. Music literature is rife with examples where turning the thumb under would impede the flow of the musical line and the rapid shift of the hand is absolutely necessary to get to the next position.

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#346309 - 02/01/05 12:01 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13759
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I don't like the term "thumb over" either.

Most teachers I've come across speak in terms of forearm rotation (as per Matthay and Taubman...)
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#346310 - 02/01/05 12:26 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Ted Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 1503
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
Both these techniques have smoothness and flow as their objective but I can think of quite a few places where I enjoy the direct opposite of smoothness and flow. In this case the "thumb over" trick can be used to attain this too. Last night I was playing Mary Lou Williams' "Walking and Swinging" and noticed how dreary it sounded when fingered to produce flow in the right hand. When I inserted lots of awkwardly chosen "thumb overs" the resulting off-beat rhythmic kicks were most attractive.

In improvisation too, non-standard fingering of passagework can produce spontaneous accents and phrasing which push the mind down another track. The difference in this latter case is that the end effect is not known in advance and certainly not desired to be known.

In either case the "thumb over" exhibits amazing versatility. Of course I'm speaking for myself and my own musical ends, which are most likely anathema to many trained nusicians.
_________________________
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#346311 - 02/01/05 12:56 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
I give up. It seems everyone has something to offer about TO, but noone can seem to offer resolution to the specific problem I have with TO.
Making the transition sound even! From E to F in the C major scale, and from B to C if continuing another octave.
Whether I play it slow or lightning fast, the E sounds like a stacatto note.

Again, DOES ANYBODY HAVE SOME INSIGHT TO THIS PROBLEM AND A POSSIBLE RESOLUTION?????????

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#346312 - 02/01/05 01:38 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Varcon Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/15/04
Posts: 1931
Loc: Mount Vernon, Georgia 30445
From my point of view, Rockitman, skipping/shifting the hand like that is simply not viable. The 'thumb over' in a scale, as you mention is too awkward. I play scales at 8 notes per beat at 208/216 (depending on which metronome I'm using) and practise the prepared thumb (turning the thumb under) and the effect is legato, which is what you want to achieve. I doubt you're going to need to go any faster than that. Personally, I think you're being mis-led with this approach--especially if you want to maintain a legato line.

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#346313 - 02/01/05 03:03 PM Re: Thumb Over??
ryan Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/04/01
Posts: 1995
Loc: Colorado
Rockitman,

I guess I should have been more basic. The only way to make a note less stacatto is to hold it longer. You are letting it go too soon. And, you are possibly making it stand out by either accenting it or by underplaying the thumb. Also, you need to make sure that you play every note in very strict rhythm.

Make sure you turn your thumb under to some extent (as Varcon said). I mean, your thumb has to actually play its note and not just be forced down onto it by the motion of your hand. Also, make sure you move your arm smoothly along with the scale so that your thumb can reach its note without forcing the previous finger to lift so soon.

Guess I should read about Thumb Over. I thought I knew what it was, but from your description of it I don't think it is a very good way to play scales.

Ryan

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#346314 - 02/01/05 03:15 PM Re: Thumb Over??
gregjazz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/27/05
Posts: 316
Loc: CA
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#346315 - 02/01/05 03:50 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Varcon Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/15/04
Posts: 1931
Loc: Mount Vernon, Georgia 30445
Good one, Gregjazz!! Makes about the same sense! \:\)

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#346316 - 02/02/05 09:46 PM Re: Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
Groan. Isn't there someone who can demonstrate, with a camcorder, even do a slo-moe?

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#346317 - 02/03/05 05:21 AM Re: Thumb Over??
simon_bacon Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 3
Loc: Belfast, N.Ireland
Hi,I've been lurking for a while now but felt moved to make my first post - searching for information on the "thumb over" technique was how I discovered this excellent forum.

I've been working on this, trying like Rockitman to smooth out the hop. At the moment I'm experimenting with curling my middle finger in towards the ball of my thumb as I rotate my wrist. So, as I move up to play the 4th note of the scale, my thumb is in fact momentarily over the first joint of my middle finger. So far this has been hit or miss, but when occasionally I get it right I'm achieving seamless scales at higher speeds than I have before.

Bear in mind I'm not an experienced pianist. I've been making music all my life though (violin's my first instrument), so I think I'm pretty good at breaking down technical problems. I'll be interested to see whether I've provided food for thought here, or whether I get shot down in flames by someone less ignorant than myself. \:\)

Oh and here's another vote for a video demonstration.

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#346318 - 02/03/05 04:25 PM Re: Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
Here that? We need the video! C'mon, someone geek out on us and do the video thing. You'll be a mighty thumb-over hero

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#346319 - 02/03/05 11:03 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
whoever has the balls to throw us a video of a good thumb over will be ridiculed by the "elite" on this board as I have come to believe that this technique is one of the major "trade secrets" that must NOT go out to the masses lest they learn to develop technique on a par with their elitist selves. :>
But, with this post, I believe there is one brave man/woman out there who will forsake their guild and provide the unlearned with a coherent video that will show us all "the way". Remember, we are not all as fortunate as most here in that we have the funds to be taught "the trade".
Just do it.
This is a hero's calling.
And if you are going to do it, we want a "run time" version and then an ultimate slomo version on the same video.
i've made a legitimate request. Who's man/woman enough to show us their wares?

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#346320 - 02/03/05 11:08 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
"in that we have NOT the funds to have a professional demonstrate this technique to us"

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#346321 - 02/04/05 06:05 AM Re: Thumb Over??
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
why don't you just ask any piano teacher you know to demonstrate it for you? there is no secret about it. as you practice it you'd eventually get it anyway. it's an obvious technique to many people here.

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#346322 - 02/04/05 06:38 AM Re: Thumb Over??
simon_bacon Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 3
Loc: Belfast, N.Ireland
Rockitman, with all due respect, referring to the very people whose help you're requesting as "elitists" probably isn't the best way to get them on side. \:\)

signa, you're quite right. I don't have a teacher at the moment, but it may well be time to look for one again. Still, I hope this topic won't end here, video clip or not. In my experience on fiddle related boards, if it's difficult to describe an aspect of technique which I take for granted, then finding the words can be beneficial for myself as well as others.

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#346323 - 02/04/05 07:44 AM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
Simon, can't you see "tongue in cheek" when you read it? I did put a smiley face after the statement.
And I do not have a teacher nor do I know one. Why do you think I'm asking on this board? Some of us have mortgages and other bills to pay which prevents me from aquiring formal lessons. Sucks to be poor.

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#346324 - 02/04/05 08:25 AM Re: Thumb Over??
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
my advice: practice!

the point of making the jump/hop less visible is to shift your thumb to next position as fast as possible, which at beginning would sound like 123-1234. the problem here is your speed at 123 or 1234 alone can be extremely fast, but the question here is if you can shift your thumb also as fast? as you practice the 'thumb positioning' speed, you let your 123 or 1234 speed slowed down to the same speed as your thumb shift's to obtain the evenness. if you play with both speeds long enough, you will eventually find out the best way to play this fast and evenly.

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#346325 - 02/04/05 01:37 PM Re: Thumb Over??
kraniak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 153
Loc: SW Florida
OK, there's a first time for everything. I'm going to make a criticism of the forum. Hopefully, it's viewed as constructive.

I came, like many, to the Pianos forum to get advise about buying a new grand piano. A handful of folk were quite helpful. There are many, however, that continually blow off the newbie seeking info by telling them to go read Larry Fine's book. Hello? People come to the forum to exchange information. Larry's book is great, but folks come here for info as well, and often, info of a greatly reduced scope compared to the book. Imagine if you tuned into NPR to hear the news and they told you to go login to cnn.com.

Now, there are a few of us seeking some assistance on the Pianist forum and some will no doubt say "go ask a teacher". If you cannot be bothered with helping someone that is many levels beneath you, why not simply move on to the next thread and save room for someone who is here to help.

There, I did it. I criticized. Whew, I feel much better. :p

Now, who's gonna do the video? \:D

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#346326 - 02/04/05 02:02 PM Re: Thumb Over??
Rockitman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 284
Loc: Central Calif
My setiments exactly. Thanks Kran.
We'll get somebody to show us, one day.
I can't stand Thumb under and can't wait to figure this TO thing out. Any piece I play that has a long ascending right hand run sounds like I'm "skipping through the park". If I could only sound near as well as I do on descendings.

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#346327 - 02/04/05 02:13 PM Re: Thumb Over??
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
I'm sorry, I don't have the means right now to post a video.

Don't even lift the thumb so much off the keys - don't move it over any other fingers. Just move the hand, so that you end up with your thumb on the correct key.

With this method, you're not moving one finger individually. You're shifting the entire hand.

Example: You have your right hand in five-finger position, with the fingers on C-D-E-F-G. To play the A with the thumb, just shift the entire hand to the right so that your hand position is on A-B-C-D-E.

Another example: You have your right hand in five-finger position, with the fingers on C-D-E-F-G. To play the E with the thumb, just shift the entire hand to the right so that your hand position is on E-F-G-A-B.

It is only called "thumb over", I think, to differentiate it from "thumb under", but again, you are not moving the thumb individually.
_________________________
Sam

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#346328 - 02/04/05 03:16 PM Re: Thumb Over??
gordonf238 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 283
Loc: NYC
lol pianojerome, i seem to have evolved this technique naturally as i played my scales faster and faster.

when playing them in slow legato, i inherently thumb under.. but when you start playing them really rapidly, you are naturally forced to skip the thumbing-under, and shift your whole instead.

i still hit the wrong keys fairly often until i'm warmed up.. and i gotta tell you, it puts significant strain on your muscles to tack the keys that fast for a period of time.. i usally switch between my two hands, and play scales very rapidly with one hand at a time.

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#346329 - 02/04/05 04:11 PM Re: Thumb Over??
simon_bacon Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 3
Loc: Belfast, N.Ireland
Thanks pianojerome and signa, you've given me things to mull over. No doubt I'll have questions later. \:\)

Rockitman, sorry I missed your old skool smiley face, but yes I can see "tongue-in-cheek" when I read it. Can you?
;\)

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#346330 - 04/23/05 04:15 PM Re: Thumb Over??
SinspawnAmmes Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/16/04
Posts: 147
Loc: Houston, TX
Video!!!
_________________________
Demi me, please!

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#346331 - 04/23/05 10:33 PM Re: Thumb Over??
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
Sinspawn:

Here's exactly how you do "thumb over":

Pick up your hand. Move the entire hand over to the right or left. Put your hand down.

That is thumb over.

It has absolutely nothing to do with your thumb moving over your hand. The thumb does not move at all over any other fingers. If it did, that would be both awkward and counter-productive. The thumb does not pass over any finger.

The name of this technique is merely a contrast to the name of the 'thumb under' technique, by which the thumb actually does pass underneath other fingers.
_________________________
Sam

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