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slapping the upright?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [DB]' started by alstar, Feb 23, 2002.

  1. alstar


    Feb 10, 2002
    do you people with more playing experiance look down upon this?
    i went to a concert tonight to see two "psychobilly" bands, and they both were slappin the uprights. it was funny though, because the first bands bass was in the shape of a coffin. has anyone seen these before? im sure it was custom made. it just looked humorous because the scroll was a black cross. it was funny. but the second band the bassist played a "normal" bass, but during his set, he stood on the side of his bass! i know that this is something not too be done, but i just found it amazing that the bass could hold a grown man. it was very interesting.
    now as for the whole slapping idea, how does it work? do you pull the string so that it slaps back down on the fingerboard, or do you just slap the strings into the finger board?
  2. Jeff Bollbach

    Jeff Bollbach Jeff Bollbach Luthier, Inc.

    Dec 12, 2001
    freeport, ny
    That standing on the bass trick has been around for some time-in fact Arnold Schnitzer showed me an old ad [prolly 20's]from American standard that showed this morbidly obese dude in a bowler derby standing on one of their basses. I am sure though that the standing on the bass trick has at times yielded catastrophic results-any stories?
  3. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    Basses that are to be (ab)used like that must have some reinforcement inside? I saw Stray Cats live once, Lee Rocker stood on his bass and jumped around with it. I just can't imagine a regular bass construction being able to withstand that treatment.
  4. http://www.rockabillyhall.com/SonnyB.Pacers56.jpg

    The cats with Sonny Burgess would ride on the bass while someone pulled it across the stage...all the while the bass player was playing.

    bass player would lay on the side, everyone else would sit on him or stand where they could
  5. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    Some are reinforced. Sold a Rockabilly pickup system to a guy in New York who bought a new 1/2 size bass and had a luthier (who probably asked for anonymity) take it apart and structurally reinforced as well as the body deadened to avoid feedback. Not to mention the obligatory painted flames. Had the K&K Rockabilly system installed and the preamp surgically implanted in the shoulder. An electric bass in an upright bass suit, ready to ride!

  6. The late Milt Hinton was a slapper from way back, and you could hardly find anyone with more experience than he.

    Though considered a gimmick today (at least in jazz), it used to be part of most bassists' regular arsenal.
  7. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    I personally do not look down on slappers. I once was treated to an amazing display of slapping, on my own bass, backstage at a concert, by a BIG young Hawaiian braddah. He was just phenomenal, all lightning speed and perfect time, with no apparent effort. Singing, too. When I asked him to show me how to do it sometime, he said "I JUST SHOWED YOU". Too funny.
  8. Just another technique - if you can do it without falling into cliche-land, or better yet, while breathing new life into a cliche, you're the better for it...IMO
  9. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    I had a voila player slap me once does that count? She was realy cranked at the time.

    If the music calls for it slap away.

    How can we get respect a serious musican it we go around standing on our instruments and using them for pogo sticks. I know we don't all play in the symphony and arn't real dignified but we should respect our instrument and not spread the notion that bass players are a bunch of lunitics even if we are a bunch of lunitics.