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How to get slap sound cut through

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by gabep, Aug 21, 2012.

  1. gabep


    Aug 21, 2012
    I play in a rock band and i incorporate slap style into most of our songs, but i can never really hear it over my extremely loud drum player but i can hear my finger style fine. I know its not my technique because when i play unplugged my slapping and popping is much louder than my finger style playing. How can i make my slapping easier to hear?
    I use a musicman bass
    Edit: for my bass tone, i crank up the mids all the way, bass almost all the way, treble about half way, and i keep all my amp settings neutral (i like my bass to do the work)
  2. EricssonB


    Apr 5, 2011
    CoSpgs, CO.
    Tell him to keep down the damned racket. Eesh.

    Tried experimenting with the EQ settings on the bass or any preamps? How do you normally run it? Personally, I'd start off flat and go from there, starting with the mids.
  3. williamk


    Apr 2, 2008
    for slap it's the opposite my friend! you need bass boost and treble boost, and mid cut! and some compression to even things out.
  4. Bongokid


    Sep 28, 2011
    Los Angeles
    I have the same problem with my ebmm Sterling. I get a better sound when I play with a regular/normal plucking. When I try and slap my bass ala Flea or put my all into plucking them there strings, I get less of a response volume and tone wise. :meh: Maybe be something going on with our basses?:scowl:
    When I play my 2011 Fender Jazz, the harder I pluck the louder it gets.
    This doesn't seem to apply to the ebmm, maybe Stingrays are the bizzz, who knows?
  5. EricssonB


    Apr 5, 2011
    CoSpgs, CO.
    Been my experience that mids are a good starting point, papí. Point stands: EQ!

    +1 for compression.
  6. carlis


    Dec 28, 2005
    What does the mid-boost switch on some basses do, then?

    Low-mid frequency is always the secret.
  7. That sounds nice in your bedroom, but often gets buried in a live mix. Once things get a bit loud, you need those mids.
    MichaelT likes this.
  8. williamk


    Apr 2, 2008
    not for slap it doesn't. do your research.

    anyways my point is boost lows and highs, before cutting anything.
  9. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    My recipe is that I don't change tone. A good rock tone, full of mids is perfectly fine for slap and gets you heard.
    If you add more lows, soundguy will need to chop them anyway, so you don't tear the audience's ears.
  10. Depends on the sound you want. I always boost at around 250Hz for everything.
  11. Play a Jazz.
    Oleg BassPlayer and MickyD like this.
  12. SmittyG


    Dec 24, 2003
    Texarkana, Texas
    LOL :D
  13. 999Brent

    999Brent Supporting Member

    Jan 1, 2011
    Auckland, New Zealand
    I use a EWS BMC, Bass Mid Control, cut the mids and increase the boost. So really increasing lows and highs....
    I also use compression, always on..,,
    The moment I slap I hit the BMC pedal and have a nice tight punchy slap tone, simply turn it off when I go back to finger style.

    I highly recommend this pedal...
  14. playbass0410


    Feb 8, 2008
    well, personally I never ever adopted that scooped smile EQ for slap bass. I got through best by have the very same EQ as with picking, no compression, and just crank up volume a litte bit.

    Doing this I get a slap sound that really pushes through. With scooped EQ my sound is nothing but just losing power and definition.

    But my fingerstyle sound also has sound mids, much growl but less deep muddy bass.
  15. Do some research? Go out and gig for 25 years and get back to me. Lol.
    Oleg BassPlayer likes this.
  16. Duckwater


    May 10, 2010
    USA, Washington
    Never had a problem here, I slap on a P bass with old flats and it always cuts. Start with a neutral EQ and try some compression.
  17. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    Research? I'd suggest getting out of the books, and into the music. If the guy is looking to make his slap cut more, your suggestion will not help matters any. Scooped EQ is what some slappers prefer for reasons I never understood. And I'm going to guess that this myth about lowering the mids is what might be causing the OP his problems in the first place. I agree with Ericcson's suggestion. And ,aybe crank your own volume a bit when slapping. While for most players slapping is louder than fingerstyle, you may need to adjust accordingly when switching back and forth.

    The recording in my video below was done with a stringray. The mids are not scooped.
    Oleg BassPlayer likes this.
  18. MNAirHead

    MNAirHead Supporting Member

    Not intending to be offensive

    Different bass... Different strings.... Then pay the sound guy to teach you how to dial in your send
  19. KCLRbass


    Sep 5, 2011
    OP, do you like your slap tone? If so, and it's just too quiet, invest in a good clean boost pedal. Stomp when you're about to slap for a bit more juice. Why EQ if you're already happy with your tone?
    Oleg BassPlayer likes this.
  20. Dantreige


    Oct 22, 2009
    +1 This!

    Either a boost pedal or a comp to even out the difference in sound. Simple.

    Good luck!

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