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HELP ME PLAY LIKE LES CLAYPOOL!

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by touchofgrey549, Apr 18, 2003.


  1. HELP! I can't stand it anymore, I have been trying to figure out how to play like him for months! I have been playing bass for 3 years but I just can't emulate his sound! DOES ANYBODY HAVE ANY TIPS ???:confused: :confused: :bassist:
     
  2. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    First: Buy a Spector, it's not the bass les uses, but hey, it's pretty nice.

    Second: Become Les Claypool and play.


    In all seriousness, no one sounds like Les Claypool.
    Stop trying.
     
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  4. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    Yeah...Les probably has one of hte most unobtainablely unique tones in the world.

    but that has been said about mark king, but www.gazzbass.com has got King's tone down to a science.

    you COULD sound like les if you really put enough time, effort and money into it, but why bother?

    just be yourself.

    as for PLAYING like les....do you really want to ?:D
     
  5. by sound, i mean technique. what technique is he using and what can u tell me to do to do likewise
     
  6. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    But his technique is his own, and, not yours.

    He uses a bunch of stuff. Fingers, slap, rapity rap dig dong dang.
     
  7. He also started out using three fingers plucking as opposed to two.

    He's a wacky guy, that Les Claypool.
     
  8. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    His style, tone, technique...everythign about him is unconventional....so use that as an example, if you want to play like him...be unconventional...be original, and fresh.
     
  9. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    "To defy the laws of tradition.....is a crusade only of the brave"
     
    aguacateojos likes this.
  10. He slaps, pops, and chords a lot. He used to play fretless (not very well in tune), which affects sound. He uses Carl Thompson basses, primarily, but don't even worry about finding or affording that. His last few albums have had his bass run through some effects; I don't know much about effects.
    If it's slapping and popping you're after, get a teacher who can slap and pop, and I frequently see some Slapping video recommended around here, but I've never tried it.
     
  11. I'd say that if you went to play for any other band, apart from Primus, Fearless Flying Frog Brigade or Oysterhead they'd kick you out before you could even shout 'Wynona.'
     
  12. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    DO THIS



    |----x----13----------x----8------24|
    |-----------x--------------------10|
    |-----5-------7----x---x---7-9-8---|
    |0-x-----5-------0-x------x---------|



    All slap and pop of course
     
    Luke19Boarder likes this.
  13. Matthew Bryson

    Matthew Bryson Guest

    Jul 30, 2001
    I always hear about his pre-amp when discussing his tone. It's some sort of old ADA - and he uses a lot of effects, but from what I hear it's the pre-amp that adds a uniqueness to his tone that you can't get by just matching the effects he uses. There was an issue of Bass Player fairly recently (within the last 6 months) that had an article about Les and he gave a pretty good run down of what gear he used on the Purple Onion album.

    As a side note - it blows me away the way that people around hear imply and sometimes out and out say that Les isn't really all that good...in this thread and in others I've seen...I can buy that his intonation on fretless isn't perfect (I think that was an experimental phase, I don't know that he plays much fretless EBG anymore) and Les himself would be that first to tell you that his arco on URB isn't very good (although I dig his trashy arco playing) But as far as playing EBG in a rock band - Les would smoke you. As far as the 'any band other than his own bands wouldn't have him comment' - that's ridiculous. Les has his wacky unique style in his own bands because he can. That does not mean that is all he can do. Have you ever heard the Primus version of NIB on the Nativity in Black album (with Ozzy singing) it's very tasteful. Have you heard Live Frogs Set #2 (Pink Floyd Animals) It sounds like Pink Floyd only better. Les could replace any bass player in any rock and roll band (except Flea in the RHCP) and that band would only sound better.
     
    mikeconnell likes this.
  14. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    In regards to what Mr. Creepy said: Word!
     
  15. Fair point.
     
  16. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Also part of Claypool's technique involves looking as crazy as possible on stage... ridiculous hats really help.
     
  17. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    TRY TO LOOK LIKE A CRAZY SALIOR!!! DO IT!
     
  18. modernday

    modernday

    Oct 20, 2002
    St. Paul
    So wait... does Les still play with 3 fingers on his string hand?
     
  19. I'm a huge Claypool fan, I may be wrong, but I think I can play fairly close to him. When it comes to technique, anyone can do it, sound on the other hand is alittle harder to achieve.

    In my opinion, Stanley Clarke and Les Claypool "sound" alot alike, they use similair technique but write completly different "styles" of music.

    Studying technique is the major thing. The more you pay attention to other techniques, the better you'll become at you're own technique. Don't copy a persons technique, try to understand it, it will make you a better bassist.

    I for one love to get all crazy slapping and strumming much like Claypool, but I also love to just sit back thump out quater notes =)

    But if you really want to play like Mr. Playcool, go buy Videoplasty or catch him playing live, its a real treat!
     
  20. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA

    Sometimes, when he wants to belt out the 16th notes. Watch videoplasty when they do groundhog's day. He does it and throws in a strummed chord once in a while. He's a nut, still one of my favs, if not the fav.
     
  21. It is so good to see someone defending Les.

    I have never understood why some people here bash him.

    I love wooten, miller, steve bailey and all those lads but Les is by far my fave bassist. That he is not as technically proficient as some of the other bassists doesn't mean he deserves to be knocked.

    Steps down from pedestal... BTW how hard is he working these days, I don't think there will be many bands that he hasn't played with if he keeps collaborating at the current rate.
     
    mikeconnell likes this.



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