Taking Slap to the next level

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Vorago, Apr 18, 2005.

  1. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    I wasn''t sure where to post this, it's a bit of technique, and a bit of tablature...anyway, if this is in the wrong place, I'm sure it'll be moved :)

    So, I've been playing for a about 2 years now, one with a teacher. I can slap the basics, most Flea stuff, which is fairly simple once you "get" what he's doing. It's all based on roots, thirds, fifts, sevens and eights, spiced up with ghost notes. I also play along with Jamiroquai (Mr Moon, Scam, Emergency on planet earth), I can play most of that stuff too, but here is my question. I'm tired of doing the same patters over and over again (although some fast slap is the best way to impress chicks :D ), and I'm looking for music that can take my slapping to the next level. No more standard patterns, but something fresh, technically challenging, with a not-so-basic approach to slapping.

    Is my point coming across? Take everything you learned from Flea and improve it :) And please, no Flea bashing, because I really learned alot about bassplaying by playing his music :)
  2. The Reff

    The Reff

    Feb 11, 2004
    Check out :

    Larry Graham ( Graham Central Station, Prince, Sly and the Family Stone)
    Marcus Miller ( Solo Records and as sideman for David Sanborn, Luther Vandros etc.)
    Victor Wooten
    Louis Johnson

    There' probably more - I just can't think of anyone right now :)

    Any ohters ?
  3. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Victor Wooten :meh: I'd rather work on one-thumb slap then on doublethumb.

    I saw a video of Mark King, he seems to be good too (to say the least)
  4. christoph h.

    christoph h.

    Mar 26, 2001
    get a "real book" or "parker omnibook" and play some jazz/bebop lines/solos using slap technique.

    i remember vic wooten and alain caron playing "donna lee" using slap only".
  5. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Check out Dave Larue's Lesson on "Slapping Across The Barline".
    Gives a quasi-polyrhythmic vibe....definitely something you would want to incorporate into your playing, IMO.
  6. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Caron's version is on his Rhythm 'N' Jazz cd.
  7. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    bumpitibump, common' ! don't tell me everybody suddenly has quit slap, right?
  8. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    If you are running out of challenges pick-up a drum method book and start learning the different rythym patterns. Substitute left/right hand for slap/pop, and then alternate. Practice this until you can do it fast with a metronome...
    If you get bored of that start focusing more on tone and consistancy. Pick-up Thomas Dolby's album called "aliens ate my Buick" and see if you can copy that tone, exactly!! If you can do all this and slap Donna Lee and Scrapple From the Apple AT TEMPO than you can officially retire as the king of Slap and develope you own method book and live happily ever after..
  9. christoph h.

    christoph h.

    Mar 26, 2001
    yeah, i'm currently listening to marcus miller's "silver rain".
    so, transcribe some lines off that and... try to get THAT sound & (more importantly) phrasing!
  10. quatre03


    Aug 20, 2004
    I have a feeling that your thumb is pointed down when you slap.

    Imo that technique is very limiting to what you can do, but then again imho so is that attitude
  11. redwood


    Oct 3, 2002
    Buffalo, NY
    Everyone forgot Stanley Clarke.
  12. zac2944

    zac2944 Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    Berkley Press has two slap CD/books that could offer some new insight into your slap quest. Even after 15 years of playing I was able to learn something from them. One is pretty straight ahead but gets more technical by the end, and the other covers afro-Cuban rhythms.

    Working from drum books is an outstanding idea.

    Louis Johnson recordings would be something a bit different than the Flea and Stuart Zander you have been playing. Brothers Johnson has a greatest hits album with a bunch of good slap lines on it.

    Start listening to R&B, Gospel, and older Funk material.
  13. can't belive noone metioned claypool, Tommy The Cat is a nice fast one that imrpesses people, its prety much the same patterns over and over again untill you get to the solo part, but a good challenge and if you want to impress chicks this will work, also check out his cover of master of puppets, tahts another good one
  14. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Maybe, but if I see Mark King slappin' away :D
  15. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    For me, personally I also find slapping overhand from the top limiting as well, and even advise newer players to slap "thumbs-up", but I've heard plenty of players completely tear it up from "up top" so I try to keep an open mind..
  16. Hi Vorago,

    Not sure if you've seen my double thumb and pluck video lessons - but they might get you trying some new stuff:


    One thing I'll add - as a logoical next step from Flea's 'thumb-pop' action - is getting a smooth thumb-pop action - on the same string. It sounds simple, but it's pretty hard to get consistent, and not just on the E and A strings - but all 4, 5, 6 etc. This is essentilally what Marcus and Alain Caron do - while they probably throw in some Wooten upstrokes with the tumb, their fundamental style is based on very clean downward thumb strokes and pops - the way to extend this basic technique is to add in double pops with your index + middle finger - likewise - do a double hit with your thumb; you can either bounce it in an old-school way or double-thumb it. Once you start getting comfortable with this, try mixing it up with different combos of notes, on different strings - different rhythms and grooves.

    The next step from here is to start incorporating hammer-ons into that - then you should be flying - check out my vids and see some of these bits and pieces - and remember you've got plenty of time to develop - all this stuff takes years of hard practice to nail - so go for it now and you'll be killing in a few years. My style now is a mixture of about 6 different techniques in one - so I can pick and choose which one, old-school or nu-school - or a combination of both - fits best for what I want to play.

  17. lethifold


    Mar 19, 2005
    Experiment with hammer muting, palm slap muting, slap hammer muting and pluck hammer muting
    If you have any questions about how to do this, email me and I may be able to set you up with a few videos :)
    Failing that look around for Mark King, he does that stuff a lot
  18. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Oh yes, I've seen those vids (grmbl ;) ) great post, cheers!
  19. Pleasure's mine dude - thought as much - keep at it bro



    Jan 25, 2005
    Phoenix, AZ
    Yeah, add these cats:

    Bill Dickens,
    Juan Nelson
    Rhonda Smith
    M'shell N'edego'chello (sp?)