Two Hand Tapping

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by CanadianBassGuy, Jul 7, 2001.

  1. Alright, how exactly do you do two hand tapping, and where could it be used?
  2. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    Bass tapping huh? God, thats so stupid. i could tell you how to do it. but the lesson section at tells it all to well. i think theres something like 10 lessons on tapping. as far as useing it in a real song. jez. ive heard people use it as far a soloing. but you might be able to use it. im not really sure. i havent heard much of it.
  3. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Stupid huh? Can't use it in a real song, huh? check my website, listen to "La Fiesta" in the sound clips section.

    Then listen to Brian Bromberg.
  4. Tyler Dupont

    Tyler Dupont Wesly Headpush

    I play a whole song using two handed tapping in my band. I'm actually suprised though .. I was just messing around with this riff at practise once and the other guys wanted to make a song out of it..
  5. Well maybe I just want to stray away from my usual pounding out root notes and octaves and power chords for once. But I guess thats all stupid too isn't it? I'm just interested in trying out different techniques, to expand my musical horizons. And Pacman, that was pretty sweet.:D
  6. I'm learning how to play Ode To Joy using two handed tapping, the thing I'd reccommend is getting a piano songbook (I'm using a classical one) then try to play the songs in there, some of them are harder than others, so just build up your coordination.

    PS Learn how to read notation so you know what notes to play!
  7. tucker

    tucker Guest

    Jan 21, 2001
    North Carolina
    Well two hand tapping. Thats a good subject to bring up. Yeah it pretty cool to show off tapping cause people are like WHOA he's/she's playing guitar with two hands at the same time. Of course you are anyways.
    But one day I was outside and practicing as usual and I decided to do some tapping. So I went forth and created one of my best and most beautiful songs ever.(which is still being worked on) My sister came up to me and asked who elses was playing with me and I said no one. She was like yeah there had to be someone casue you were playing a simple line and the guitarist was playing something else too. I just smiled and said I was playing by my self and she was like thats pretty cool. But I really don't know what I'm doing as far as following arpeggios and scales and stuff. I just play what sounds right to me. Now don't get me wrong and think "oh this kid has no clue what he's doing or saying". I do have theory knowledge, at least 1 year of it in high school music theory class last year.
    but anyways if you want to tap, which is not the only thing in the world, you should excel at fingerwork more, you should learn theory cause that will help you out majorly.
    you can write out songs with tap but its hard to fit guitars and bass and vocals in. Tap is sorta like lead playing.
    I know one kid who is a very good bass player BUT he sucks at playing fingerstyle. He can only tap and classical thumb(not very well though). He has a great ear and good music knowledge but cannot hold a rythym or keep simple basslines.(he always has to solo too talk about annoying guitarist.)
    But he has written out a song that is all tapped and its wonderfully written. Its so well thought out. Ok im done my hands hurt.
  8. Well written tucker.

    Another thing is, you should set your action fairly low, I think mine is about 3 or 4 mm above the 12th fret. And if you ever find yourself in a situation where you need to play a note on the 4th fret and the 13th fret (or somewhere around there, those are just examples), keep your finger ON the higher note, because it doesn't take as much pressure to make it ring, but you might need to actually take your finger off the string on the 4th fret so it can gain momemtum as you swing it down. But that might just be me becuase I use fairly heavy gauge strings.
  9. The Navigator

    The Navigator

    May 17, 2001
    Tucson, AZ
    awesome stuff pacman.

    I've been tapping almost the whole time I've been playing bass. It's not stupid nor is it a novelty. It's a legitimate style that takes a lot of practice to do well.

    Those who can do it well impress the hell outta anyone listening. Like mentioned, pick up some Brian Bromberg stuff.
  10. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Thanks guys.

    I didn't post that to draw attention to myself, but it bugs me when people write off a viable technique as stupid or self-serving masturbation just because they've got no idea how to do it, or how to use it.

    'preciate the kind words, tho.
  11. sunnking


    Jul 13, 2001
    muting is very important with tapping. so is taste. when done well and used as a technique not a gimmick it can be very cool.
  12. About 90% of my band's songs are played in dropped-D tuning.. I just moved to a 5 string bass from a 4, and dropping the E to a D seemed silly when I had access to that D on the 3rd fret of my newly accuired B-string, so I've been figuring out all the songs using that 3rd fret D instead of the open. (bear with me, the tapping reference is coming.) All was good until I got to one song that has the open low D droning while I play some high notes on the 12th - 15th frets of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd strings. I thought I was sunk and would have to resort to dropping the E on my 5 string when we played it live. All of a sudden it dawned on me that I could just hammer on the 3rd fret D and play the high notes by tapping with my right. I tried it, and it sounds great. Actually, I think it sounds better than how I used to play it, because the high notes have a completely different tone when tapped as opposed to plucked.

    Plus, it looks cooler onstage. :)
  13. Lovebown


    Jan 6, 2001
    The only problem with tapping is it takes immense practice in order to fit into a song half-assed... I'd like to be able to use tapping for fills and stuff much like how Billy Sheenan does. Billy = god, though.

  14. FalsehoodBass


    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    My problem with tapping is that it is nowhere near as loud as playing with a pick or fingers, so I can't incorporate it into a song unless im using a volume pedal or something... is there any way around this?
  15. Everybody, has there own idea of what they like and dont like, but as for me...
    Tapping is a great way to expand your musical horizons. I came across it on accident, when I first started playing. I had an instructor who showed me ways of developing my left hand so it was strong enough to play without using my right hand. Then I just started learning scales and arpeggios with my right hand too. The first tune that I learned was Linus and Lucy, that is a great way to learn to tap songs.
    As far as the volume question. There are a few things to help, one is practicing tapping more to develop strength indepedently for both hands, boost the E.Q. or tone control of your bass. Add some lows, mids and highs. Practice tapping right on the fret (if its a fretted) and off the fret too. Practice tapping at loud and soft volumes. With and without an amp. Also try adding a little reverb. I have a bass that is set up for tapping, meaning that it is optimized for me to tap. It is a Zon Sonus Custom 5, it has a fairly low action.
    It is very applicable in situations other than solos. I approach bass more like a piano, I mean we do have 8 fingers and 2 thumbs. :) Another tune that I recently learned was Eine kleine Nachtmusik (K525), by W.A. Mozart. I figured as much as I could by ear then purchased the piano transciption for it. BTW piano scores are great for tapping, they show you both the bass and the treble parts.
    I love tapping I cant think of playing without it. The bass is a beautiful instrument capable of so much!!!!