slap - how?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Camel_spit, Nov 14, 2001.

  1. how exactly do u do slap bass? And while i'm at it, what are hammer-ons and pull-offs and how do u do them? Same with harmonics. Sorry i'm new to bass and i only know the basics. Please help.
  2. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Welcome to TalkBass and bass in general!

    You asked quite a few questions there, and each one of those can be answered by searching the archives. Just click on the "Search" button up near the top of the page and do a search for each of those items in the Technique forum. You shouldn't have any trouble finding info on any of those techniques, especially slap- we have plenty of threads on that.
  3. In case your lazy, I'll answer two of your answers, the other two you will have to search for.

    Hammer-on: Hit A string, now with your left hand (fret hand) press down hard on a fret.
    Congrats, you just hammered on.
    This can also be done by plucking the string on like lets say, the C note (3rd fret, A string) and then pressing a different fret lower down (say the 4th fret.)

    Its rather easy after you get the hang of it.

    Pull-off: Very similar to hammer-on. Its the opposite. Wow, I said an oxymoron! Sweet!
    Anywayz, hit that C note again (3rd fret, A string) and then let go of it VERY rapidly.

    Congrats, you just pulled off.

    You can also do it by hitting that same C note, than moving UP the fretboard with your left hand (like the 2nd fret, a B note.)

    The rest you can search for.

    Goodluck in your Journey Into Basshood.
  4. irjason

    irjason Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2001
    Louisville, KY
    To slap use the thumb of your picking hand to slap the E or A string. Basically hit it with the side of your thumb so that the string hits against the fretbord and makes a thunk sound similar to a kick drum. I get the best results with my thumb over the last few frets of the fretboard. I have seen people slap over the pickups or even near the bridge, but it seems to be more difficult to me.
    Use your pointer and middle fingers to pull the D or G string up and release them so that they snap back in place. This should make a popping sound similar to a snare drum.
    Slapping is commonly done in octave based patterns - throw in open strings, hammer on's, and 5th's, and slides to spice things up a bit.
    It will be fairly difficult at first, practice slowly and build up speed. Once your picking hand learns what to do it will be like second nature.
  5. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    one more tiny piece of advice that id like to add, you can also take your fretting hand and slap it against the fretboard, making a percussive sound. i like to use the meaty portion right between the 1st and 2nd knuckle.

    you should do it in tripplets,

    ex: 1. slap with thumb
    2. slap fretboard with fretting hand
    3. pop d/g string.