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Electric Bass Lessons: Slapping

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Well, if you're a bass player,
one of the things you, can't get away
without doing is slapping or popping.
Now, I'll, never forget the first time I
A bass being slapped around.
[LAUGH] And it was ages ago,
a group called Sly & the Family Stone had
a bass player had Larry Graham.
And when he first came on the scene I
remember all my,
band mates coming to me saying, you have
to hear this guy.
And I'd listen to those records and I
couldn't figure out.
How that sound was being made, and it was,
it was him slapping and popping the base.
And so, by slapping-
That string, getting-
And using the hammer on-
And then.
He was getting this very percussive sound,
and I later found out that, Larry Graham
was in, in a band without a drummer.
So, he was basically creating the drum
part as well as the bass part at
the same time.
And he had these lines that go.
Sliding all over the bass,
and the thing sounded like.
It sound like a drum and a bass at the
same time.
It was amazing.
And, this site was about creating complete
So some of you may very well specialize in
It's not one of the things that I do all
the time, but
I incorporate a little popping-
slapping into what I do with my fingers.
And, so, you should actually check it out
and know how to do it.
Out of principle some bass players make
the art, artistic choice not to slap or
pop, for instance my good friend, Anthony
Great bass player and, influential bass
player but he chooses not to slap and I
get it.
However, in today's world,
especially if you're gonna play the funk,
you're gonna have to know how to slap.
So, check out some of these records.
Sly & the Family Stone, records by,
Larry Graham and of course, these days and
times, there's so
many great bass players that can slap like
crazy, Marcus Miller and Victor Wooten,
so I just recommend that you listen to as
many players as you can and
get some of the slapping techniques going.
So again, for those of you that haven't
with slapping or popping, the slap is this
just the thumb-
Slapping the string.
And you're literally.
you'll some players like Louis Johnson and
then he'll get that thumb back so far.
And really hit it hard.
And then, the left hand will mute it.
To get that percussive edge so you can go.
You know, so now we have that going.
And then of course, if you.
Because all I was doing.
But when they open the string.
So you're, you're a drummer now, and so.
You can fool around with that.
Come up with as many patterns and
paradiddles as you can.
And then the popping, part of it,
you can either pinch those like you're
pinching somebody and just.
Pinch the string.
Of course if you, put a little.
Hammer on the left hand.
Or you can get your finger, under the
string like that.
And pull it like that.
So when you combine the two, you have the.
It's a.
And so on.
So now.
Like to put it all together, and add the
drums and see what we can come up with.
Something like that.
Okay, I think I'm gonna do it.
I'm gonna ask you to send me a video of
you slapping.
[LAUGH] I'm afraid cuz I know a lot of you
guys are killing it!
This is where I invite you to check out
everyone else's, version.
Their video exchange, send me yours and we
will get back to you.
Don't hurt me too bad.