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two questions...

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by BassGirl1122, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. how long did it take for you to learn to slap bass (if you do) and those who sing, how long did it take to learn to play and sing at the same time??
    I sit in with a local band, for a song or two, every now and then but can't do both. I also sing karaoke and take my bass and either play along while others sing or sing but not at the same time..curious...
    sorry I sound so duh! it's late!
  2. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    I don't sing, but as far as slapping, I think that a couple of weeks of dedicated practice would do it. There are plenty of instructional videos out there, or ideally, take some lessons, but most of all, just woodshed, and you'll get it.

    P.S. I have heard from fellow musicians who do sing that the key to singing & playing at the same time is to memorize your instrumental parts, such that you don't have to think about them, and then just "ignore" them while you play, so you can focus on your singing. Hope this helps.
  3. dulouz


    Dec 7, 2006
    It took me about a year of fairly intense practice, about 30 minutes a day EVERY day, to get to where I was consistent enough to play slap on gigs. I also spent a lot of time listening to the masters of slap. There are a lot of things to consider besides the basic technique, such as: you will most likely have to adjust your gear for slap vs. finger, and you need to learn which songs will work with slap.

    There is a lot of info on the forum about slap, dig around a bit and you will find a lot of good stuff.
  4. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Masks, people, masks!
    Song Surgeon slow downer.
  5. Bealsosc


    Oct 21, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    I have started to learn to sing and play, start with a song where the singing syncs with the bassline and go from there. I learnd primus' soutbound pachyderm and frizzle fry first.
  6. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    I would not consider 30 minutes a day to be intense practice... more like warming up. When I said a few weeks of dedicated practice (above), I meant at least 4 hours/day, if not double that. Hope this helps!
  7. Ganky


    Nov 29, 2008
    Cambridge, England
    +1 to dave musacato - 3 lots of 1 hour sessions for couple of weeks.
  8. chicagodoubler


    Aug 7, 2007
    Chicago, that toddling town
    Endorsing Artist: Lakland, Genz Benz

    This ain't just a technique. It's associated very strongly with the music of the guys who started it- Larry Graham (Sly, Graham Central Station, and Louis Johnson (Brothers Johnson.)

    If you want to slap and and sound like you know what you're doing, learn as much stuff by these guys as you can!!!!!!!!!!!

    Raw technique is meaningless. It's the music that really matters.:p
  9. I am not a slapper, nor am I a singer per se. But, I have a friend that learned how to slap and tap from Stu Hamm's instructional video. My friend is quite good at both, by the way.
  10. At first, singing and playing simultaneously for me seemed impossible. Tried everything. Dumbing down the bass part seemed to make things even more difficult. Then, without fanfare, it just kinda came together in an instant.

    I'd recommend taking a stab at bass/vocals songs by a band like Rush. Distant Early Warning is pretty easy and the first one I tackled.

    The one thing I've noticed for me personally is that my 'vocal brain' needs something to lock onto, so a simpler line or merely thumping away on a root/fifth can sometimes be much more difficult. YMMV.
  11. Don't slap, but singing and playing is something I had to teach myself to do. It was a challenge at first, but there are three things I find help me sing and play simultaneously.

    1. Sing what you have to sing while you are playing the music from the start - even if you are messing up the lyrics. If it comes at the same time, it isn't a matter of re-arranging what you've already learned.
    2. Knowing the lyrics. Memorize the lyrics, it helps to not have to concentrate on reading while playing.
    3. I have taught myself to dissect everything in my head and compartmentalize all of the different things going on, bass, vocals, different guitars, drums. Hard to focus on it all sometimes, but if you can pull it apart in your head you can concentrate on different things more readily.

    Well I hope this helped a little anyway. Good luck!!
  12. Slapping - it depends on the skill level you are shooting for. If you want to make a 'slap sound' on a couple of notes, you can learn that in an afternoon. If you want to be fluent & be able to switch back & forth between fingerstyle & slap, or to slap with consistency, you need to practice it. You'll learn economy of motion (not wasting energy in your movements), and the exact effort required to get THAT SOUND. A lesson or ten from a master will help tremendously. Dave M is right - a couple of weeks of good, effective practicing will help it to sink in. Playing it live with your band or the radio/CDs will help also.

    I've been taking lessons to improve on slap technique / style for a while, and I am by no means profficient yet (enough to play a modern R&B or gospel gig right now)


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