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Is slapping my thing?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by fingerguy, Oct 1, 2018.

  1. fingerguy


    Aug 2, 2016
    I was following a few slapping videos last night and came to the conclusion I need enough work on the things I am currently working on, who has time for slapping?

    Anyone else feel the same way?
    Ellery likes this.
  2. Gaolee

    Gaolee Official leathers tester and crash dummy

    I wouldn't mind learning how to slap a bass guitar. I can slap an upright just fine, but that's a completely different technique for a different purpose. Playing is fun, and that's that.
    pacojas and Old Blastard like this.
  3. Nashrakh


    Aug 16, 2008
    Hamburg, Germany
    I'm at the point in my career where I would finally tackle learning how to slap and I actually have fun taking the first steps with simple octave slaps and pops.

    But then it hits me that I have to this date never once needed to do it, and with the bands I play in, I may as well never have to do it in the future.

    That does indeed pose a dilemma, because my time would be better spent on other things, too. I say be bold, be pragmatic.
  4. Frank Tuesday

    Frank Tuesday

    Jul 11, 2008
    Austin, TX
    I have no interest in leaning to slap or play with a pick. Yes, I know I'm limiting myself, but I'm happy with this particular limitation. I've never been playing with anyone and thought, "I wish I could slap cause that would sound so good right here." It just isn't a sound that I hear unless I'm listening to a bass player who is already playing slap. If someone wants to play with a slapper, there are many bassists who hear that sound in their head, and would therefore be a better choice.
    Anhg77, Ellery, Hounddog409 and 2 others like this.
  5. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    I've listened to the radio over twelve hours this year. Heard no slap.
  6. Gravedigger Dav

    Gravedigger Dav Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Fort Worth, Texas
    I really don't want to know about you slapping your thing.
  7. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    There are a dozen songs or so that I like to play that sound better slapped. Slapping is fun when done tastefully to fit the song. I like to play "Heartless" by Heart now and then. It's easy to learn.
    Quinn Roberts and Smooth_bass88 like this.
  8. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    The radio is complete garbage anyway. It is a dead medium that reflects as much of music as an ice cube does a glacier. Pop music rarely uses instruments anymore, so the odds of hearing slap bass is almost 0.
  9. saabfender


    Jan 10, 2018
    Last night I started work on doing rockabilly slap on my fretless. It’s Bill Black’s fault. That’s probably as funky as I’ll get on the whole slappa-da-bass thing.
  10. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    nuh uuuh! My dad says that it's only on the radeo if it's good and if it's not on the radeo then it's not good, so there.
  11. fingerguy


    Aug 2, 2016
    I don't agree with this thread move for it's a general topic not necessarily asking for technique advice.
  12. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I learned to slap. I love to slap. I wrote and played one song in my life (in my sig) where I slap. I never really used slap again. Except when we play Bruno Mars Treasure... but I don't think that even counts.
    Plucky The Bassist likes this.
  13. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    Anybody that wants to learn how to slap. ;)
  14. cman227


    Dec 21, 2014
    I have two bass solos/night and I slap on both of them. I enjoy playing them but the technique is hit and miss. On a good night it's good. On a night where I'm tired or the drummer starts off too fast then not so much. I get why people don't bother. It's demanding and really now that we all have heard Victor, Marcus and Stanley do it, is there anything we can really add?
    J_Bass likes this.
  15. Helix

    Helix California U.S.A.

    May 29, 2015
    Yeah we get it.....you just don’t want to take the time to learn how to play slap

    Cool....don’t then
  16. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    I spend a lot of time bouncing the strings off the frets, but rarely do I pull a high string and release it. I'm kind of a "slap without the pop" player at times.
    pacojas likes this.
  17. EtoBb


    Nov 27, 2009
    Chicago, IL
    OTOH if you wait to learn a technique until you need it, you won’t be prepared and risk being replaced by someone who knows what they’re doing.
    pacojas, Dgl44, Wasnex and 1 other person like this.
  18. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    I have taken a swing at learning slap a few times. I get the basic thump\pluck technique and syncopating it with the drums. I can play a simple disco style line. I got lost very quickly when the technique evolves beyond just a root\octave arrangement or starts involving muted stops. Then I start getting lost in the rhythm of it and have trouble getting my brain and hands on the same page. When you get into combining it with other techniques like Les Claypool, Ryan Martinie, and Nick Schendzielos do I can't piece it together. There is just too much happening, and if you play it slow, it loses all meaning. I wish I could do it because I love a challenge, and it allows the bass to express its self in such a forward way.
    I also don't get double thumping. It feels very awkward. Videos make it look easy enough, but doing it feels physically wrong.
    Old Blastard likes this.
  19. Maybe you watched the wrong videos, their are several viable approaches. Or you tried to hard and over thought it stay loose the name is misleading.
    Like anything else put in the time, start slow.
    If you like the sound casualy try for 3-4min. a day Who knows? Slapping just may become your thing...
  20. diegom


    Jun 18, 2008
    Imagine if a painter said: "Is Blue my color???".

    You either use it or you don't.
    Flacco, Dgl44, metermech and 5 others like this.

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