1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Stupid nondescript slap lessons

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by metallicarules, May 29, 2001.

  1. I am getting very frustrated with a lot of the lessons dealing with slapping I have found on the internet. A lot of them talk about left hand slapping, yet they all just say "just hit the strings with your flat left hand and it should sound like a muted note" then they'll go on to put an audio clip of some bitch hard slap lick, (that of course has 3 other instruments to make it sound better) that supposedly uses this left hand technique. My problem is if I just whack the fretboard with my left hand, no matter where I hit it, a note, albeit a soft one, is going to sound unless I mute the strings with my right hand. Of course, if I'm going to take the time to mute with my right hand then why don't I just hit ghost note with my right instead of my left? Anyway I'm confused, perhaps someone here could explain to me with a little detail how to perform this technique properly?
  2. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    I had exactly the same problem. The key is practice. Eventually, you'll work out exactly how hard to slap so you don't inadvertently sound any pitches. Keep your left hand on the strings after you come down on them. It also helps to use several fingers (or all of them) to slap, if you're not using them for anything else.
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    You have to hit the strings with the fingers, not the palm.
    The thing is NOT to keep the lefthand fingers flat, but to curve them slightly to match the fretboard radius, so that ALL strings are hit at the same time.
  4. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    I still don't get it. I thought you were supposed to hit the lower strings (basically, e or a) with the side of the thumb. Not all strings at once! Plus does the sound come from all thumb hammer or is there some sideways strum involved. I can get various notes but the pluck, I would guess buy its very nature much harder is much louder. I mean what causes the thumb sound. The string going down rapidly striking the 20th fret or the end of the fingerboard then them bouncing off the fret and vibrating? or is it hitting the fret to get the click and a slight sideways motion to sound the note clearly? or what? Am I going nuts? Boy howdy the side of my thumb hurts! It feels sometimes like it actually hit the nerve! Ouch!
  5. Tyler Dupont

    Tyler Dupont Wesly Headpush

    I find that if you use mainly your middle and ring fingers(a bit of pinky too) and try to connect with the E and A right around the middle section of your middle and ring fingers .. you get the best sound. If you have the money or can get a hold of it .. check out "Slap, pop and tap" by stu hamm.. it covers all the fundimentals of slap. and you get to watch him struggle to hold down that meal he ate before doing the video too .. hehe
  6. Hey thanks a lot guys, now I have an idea of how to do it properly, all that's left is to practice.
  7. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Dude, he was talking about LEFT HAND slapping, not regular slapping.

    The sound comes from the string hitting the frets.

    Harder is not louder! Momentum is the key, not force.
    Think of it as a piano hammer. A piano hammer is propelled by key mechanic and hits the piano string in free flight, like a stone shot from a sling. It hits the string and bounces right off. the whole thing happens in a millisecond.

    The same principle is applied in slapping. The thumb hits the string and bounces right off. no strumming or sideways motion involved.

Share This Page