Romberg Bevel and Slapping
Here's the short story: I switched to guts (Lenzners) on my 50s Czech flat back I picked up recently, and I love them! The tone is deep and rich, and they are like butter under the fingers. They totally fit the gypsy jazz, bluegrass and roots country I mostly play.
The one issue I'm having is getting a clean, crisp "click" when I slap. My other bass has Evah P weichs and the click is very crisp and clear, and I can do fast triplet drags and such with good clean results. Problem with the EPs is it kills my chops to do a whole gig of slapping with them. I'm wondering if the fingerboard might have anything to do with not getting a clean slap with the guts. It's beveled, and I wonder if the radius/bevel of the board affects the slap sound (palm/fingers hitting the strings to the board at a different angle?).
Anybody have any informed insights?
I think the difference has more to do with the nature of the strings than the bevel. Guts give you a nice warm organic click, rather than the harsher clack of steel or synthetic strings. All three of my carved basses have bevels and I have no problems slapping them...intonation is another story.
Thanks. I kinda suspected it was more the strings than anything.
^^^ What he said...
...PLUS with lower tension strings, you need to adjust your technique a bit also. IMO the "sweet spot" for power in the pull/slap dept. is a bit narrower with lower tension setups.
I'm finding that. I also adjusted the string height a little and found I'm able to get a clearer "drag" click from the lower strings with my palm when playing on the D/G strings, if that makes sense.
I'm growing to love the sound and feel. I now have D/G from Dlugolecki on the bass, an old Oliv A and a Lenzner E, but I just got a freshly made, wrapped A from Damian in the mail, and will be looking for a different (flatwound) E solution, too. Might even get a solo spiro, or maybe a Velvet for the E.
One other thing I was going to post, but forgot, was that *maybe* the bevel creates an area with a bit of a different resonance from the rest of the fingerboard - end result being that I've sometimes had to experiment with E strings in various setups, to get a pleasing slap sound out of all 4 strings. This might be something particular to my bass, of course, so who knows...
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