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Please someone help me with slap.

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by JoeyZ, May 30, 2005.

  1. JoeyZ


    May 9, 2005
    I have seemed to hit a wall, Not that im gloating or anything but i seem to be better than everyone around me which means they cannot show me anything new..

    What i want to know is some techniques that i can practice...

    please try to be as descriptive as possible...Thanks
  2. Hmm...Well, I can start listing some techniques. Just say which ones you don't know.

    -Pop slap (hit and come back up)
    -Standard slap (strike-through slap)
    -Ghost notes
    -Standard pluck
    -Double pluck
    -Double thump
    -Double thump to single pluck
    -Double thump to double pluck
    -Double thump to double pluck on the same string(wooten sig)
    -Single slap to triple pluck (don't know/do it myself but heard of it)
    -Using thumb as a pick

    That's all that I can remember right now.
  3. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass **** Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    YEP, there are a zillion different slap techniques and methods that one could learn and most great slappists never do. I have heard alot of bass players rip blazing fast slap patterns during warm-ups or sound checks but never be able to use them in a band situation, still a neat trick but that's about all it amounts to, a TRICK.
    Bieng able to integrate these techniques into your everyday basslines and solos is what counts IMO, and making that transition can be difficult and painfull on the rest of the band. I would recommend doing the following: Keep practicing your slapping, try to concentrate on using the whole range, try to get those high notes on the D string to sound just as pure as your open E and A strings. Use a metronome to keep yourself honest time wise. Concentrate on making each note as loud as the next, and even boost your mids a bit, this will force you to slap cleaner and be more accurate. Your amp can be a great crutch but try to set it is flat as you can and make the tone happen with your bass and your hands, when you are in a big venue and going direct you may not have the opportunity to get with the sound person to "fine tune" your tone, especially if you are the opening band or something, and you will be "out there" with very little EQ. When you do pick up some new techniques spend time integrating them slowly into what you are already doing, some will add extra rythmic flexability, others will allow you to "double-up" certain notes, just remember, more is not always better, it comes down to tone, timing, and what we always seem to forget, providing a solid rythmic and harmonic foundation for the rest of the band to do what they do.
  4. JoeyZ


    May 9, 2005
    yeah, im in a punk rock band and wont really ever even have the chance to do slap but it still would like to learn...

    Heres basically what i know how to do..

    -thumb slap x 2 then pop
    -slap mute slap pop

    heres ones you listed that i would like to know!! :hyper: :hyper:
    Pop slap (hit and come back up)
    -Standard slap (strike-through slap)
    -Ghost notes
    tell me more about these seeing as i don't know what your talking about...
    Please try to be as descriptive as possible. I would like to try these out.

    oh and thank you very much for helping me..it's much appreciated
  5. - Thumb, hammer-on, pluck
    - Left hand slap
    - Rake thumb on strings going up and then do a pop
    - Double thumbing patterns, like thumb down, thumb down, thumb up.
    - Paradiddles with double thumbing
  6. Intrepid


    Oct 15, 2001
    Yeah. I almost never get to integrate slap even though my technic is quite good. I play in a jam/folk/rock thang and it just doesn't work. I've tried a couple times in practice. The slap line by itself will sound great and is musically correct with the chording, but it just doesn't mesh with the style.
  7. actually whats been cool is my bass teacher has been trying to get me to incorporate alot of time, and drummer feel into my slap playing. In his opinion "slapping" is about percussion and time. Its not about notes, and fancy stuff. If you feel the pulse and groove, then any of the notes and techniques will work.
    So for this, essentially think of your thumbing as the basss drum and the popping as your snare drum, and come up w/ as many drum patterns as you can, but the key is to play w/ the metronome to keep the time and feel happening.
    I've seen quite a few bass player rip off theese technique laden slap runs and thought it was totally cool (from a techniques perspective), until you hear someone play slap style w/ time and feel- then it makes you groove.
  8. Intrepid


    Oct 15, 2001
    ^That's true, but remember your not fieldy. The notes still have tone. It probably would help to beat box in your head while slapping. Good idea.


    Jan 25, 2005
    Des Moines, IA

    <ding, ding, ding> We have a winner :hyper:

    This is what slapping and popping are really all about!

    Thanks for your terrific insight, FCM3
  10. +1 to lowphatbass

    Bill Dickens is probably the fastest slap bassist in the world right now, but when he does his machine-gun note slapping, especially when its not in the context of soloing, while impressive, it sounds like @#^$. That doesn't mean that tricks like that aren't good to throw in for maybe a beat or half a beat--the kind of fill that will get attention, but won't be a detraction or distraction. And he also does a right index finger slap of some kind, I'm still curious as to what this is.

    I think you, Joeyz, already know what one of the two thumb slaps are because these are the only two kinds that I know of. The pop-slap is simply when you hit the string dead-on and come back up rather than subtly to the side in order to strike through. I like to compare the strike-through to fingerstyle because they are both strike-throughs in a sense. With fingerstyle, you pull the string then release it as your finger ends up on the string that is a 5th down. In the same way, when you hit the string with you thumb (using your wrist as the power and thumb parallel to the strings) you are pulling the string away from you at a rapid pace and your thumb will end up under the strings on the fret-board or pick-up, or body, however you do it.

    Ghost notes include pretty much any slap technique used while your left hand (or whatever body part :p ) mutes the strings by lightly touching them. Almost all famous slap bassists use this but some go the extra step (Victor Wooten, etc.) to sound harmonics while slapping instead of using just plain ghost notes.
  11. JoeyZ


    May 9, 2005
    hmm...i guess i already was doing ghost notes then. meh, whatever. I've decided to back off slap for now based soley on the fact that i must practice songs in the band....i am getting sloppier. oh well!!

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