Nobody Ever Told Me I Have Small Hands!

or… You Are What You Believe You Are.

happy fingersI once played in a band with a lead singer, Paul, who wasn’t particularly handsome. Paul wasn’t particularly tall either. I’m quite certain he wasn’t aware of either of these distinctions, and I’m absolutely certain that if he was, he never considered them handicaps. Weekend after weekend we would go into a club, and he would wind up leaving with the girl the rest of the club couldn’t take their eyes off of the entire night. This guy had a brand of magic that baffled the rest of the band. It got so ridiculous we turned it into a game. We would point out three women early in the evening (the three we all agreed were the most stunning), and by the time the gig was done he’d either be leaving with them, or have their number with an acknowledging smile that they were not going to have any regrets the following day.

And then there was Cliff. He was a drummer (drummers have the same amount of chick magnetism as singers) in another band, about the same height as Paul, yet he believed it would be impossible for him to hook up because the majority of girls were taller than him and therefore not interested. He was a much more personable guy than Paul, and better looking in most people’s opinion. If he had two girlfriends in his life, I’d say that’s a lot.

What I believe is this. At one point in Cliff’s life someone told him he was short, that his shortness would be a problem for him, and he believed it. And either nobody ever poisoned Paul with similar words, or if they did, he simply didn’t believe it.

Do you think Danny Devito ever considered himself too short or unattractive to be an actor?

I tell these two tales because the same is true for people who believe their hands are too small for a guitar or bass. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard someone ask, what’s the best bass for someone with small hands? And my answer is always the same, “Whatever bass you like!”

My hands measure 7″ from my wrist to the tip of my middle finger. I never once gave a thought to my hand size, and therefore never felt I was working with any limitations. I’ve also never come across any music that I felt I couldn’t play because my hands weren’t big enough, and I’ve yet to come across a bass guitar I wasn’t comfortable playing, once I got used to it. I should note that while I understand people have basses and guitars with neck profiles that “feel right” to them, what feels right is more often than not simply what they’ve become used to. I was forced into situations where I had to switch from a pencil necked four string bass, to a very wide five string, and it felt like an entirely new instrument the first week or two. It WAS an entirely new instrument… but after a month of playing it exclusively, it felt like home. And guess what bass neck then became the less comfortable to play?

Who we are is what we believe we are. What we’re capable of is only limited by what we believe we’re capable of. Believe you are ugly, and so it will be. Believe you are limited, and so you will be. If you still need convincing check out some of these videos. I’m certain nobody ever told these people their hands were too small for their instrument.

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