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plank
03-22-2016, 04:26 AM
I'm sure this question has been asked dozens of times. I'm just wondering does fingernail length really matter with ukulele playing?

In a nutshell due to my job I cannot have long nails. Will this hamper my progress over time or does it even matter?

Doug W
03-22-2016, 04:36 AM
I'm sure this question has been asked dozens of times. I'm just wondering does fingernail length really matter with ukulele playing?

In a nutshell due to my job I cannot have long nails. Will this hamper my progress over time or does it even matter?

It is just a preference. I prefer long nails. Other people prefer short nails. Not growing nails will not hamper your progress.

Kyle23
03-22-2016, 04:39 AM
In my opinion, for strumming it doesn't matter. I actually can't stand the harsh sound of long nails strumming an ukulele. I know a lot of people grow out the nails for picking. It's not necessary, but it helps. If you find it tough to pick without long nails, there's little pick things you can buy that go on your finger tips but I forget what they're called.

janeray1940
03-22-2016, 05:04 AM
There was a really good recent discussion of nails here (http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?119290-Fingerpicking-with-nails-or-pads). Wide range of preferences; in short, there's no single "right" way - just do what works for you.

wayfarer75
03-22-2016, 05:19 AM
I prefer to keep my nails short short short. I'm low maintenance; I don't worry about nails breaking or being the right length and shape or anything like that. It hasn't hampered my progress whatsoever, and there are pros who don't have long nails. If you want a more nail-like sound without growing them, there are Alaska picks you could try, or Fred Kelly Freedom picks. I haven't used any picks but you might find you like them. Who knows?

actadh
03-22-2016, 05:26 AM
My personal preference is short nails with little white showing. Has not hampered anything and it eliminated the sore strumming forefinger. I can still get a clean "snap" to the string when fingerpicking.

Rllink
03-22-2016, 06:02 AM
At one point I was actually trying to grow my fingernails on my right hand and I was clipping them short on my left hand. But strumming and picking wore down the ones on the right, and not being very good about paying attention to things like fingernails and toenails, the ones on the left kept growing out. I finally quit thinking about it, and nothing bad has happened to me.

PhilUSAFRet
03-22-2016, 06:18 AM
My nails are soft and thin, so I have to keep them short. I've seen some guys with nails like Benecio DelToro in Wolfman. Seems to be a matter of preference and playing style as always.

bacchettadavid
03-22-2016, 06:21 AM
I have long shaped and filed nails on my right hand (when looking down at the hand, my thumbnail is beveled to be longer on left side while the other fingernails are beveled to be longer on right side), very short and filed nails on my left.

I don't find them too difficult to maintain, but I do experience some loss of tone when one breaks and I have to reshape them then wait 3 weeks for them to grow back out (going through one of those periods now). Because my fingernails are specialized for playing uke, they sometimes interfere with other activities.

Experiment and find what works best for you overall. I'm still experimenting with fingernail shape myself.

plank
03-22-2016, 09:55 AM
Thanks for the answers guys. I'll have to look at finger picks in the future when I start learning more intricate techniques.

Again. Much appreciation for you to answer my question. Thanks.