How to Slap Bass? – Techniques And Tricks

Knowing how to slap the bass is a skill that can be learned by anyone with a bit of patience and practice. While it may look difficult, the basics of slapping are actually quite simple. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to add your own unique flavor to any song.

Slapping the bass is all about experimentation, so don’t be afraid to try new things. The more you experiment, the more you’ll learn about what works and what doesn’t. With a bit of practice, you’ll be able to add your own personal touch to any song.

Slap Bass Technique

There are many different techniques that can be used when playing slap bass. Some of the more common techniques include:

The Basic Slap

The basic slap is the most commonly used technique and is simply accomplished by striking the string with the back of the hand.

The Mute Slap

The mute slap is used to create a staccato effect and is achieved by placing the palm of the hand over the strings to mute them before striking them with the back of the hand.

The Double Slap

The double slap is used to create a more aggressive sound and is achieved by striking the string with the back of the hand twice in quick succession.

The Ghost Slap

The ghost slap is used to create a haunting, ethereal sound and is achieved by lightly striking the string with the back of the hand and then quickly releasing the hand to allow the string to vibrate freely.

The Pop Slap

The pop slap is used to create a percussive, popping sound and is achieved by striking the string with the back of the hand and then quickly releasing the hand to allow the string to snap back against the fretboard.

Man playing white and orange guitar

The Tap Slap

The tap slap is used to create a tapping sound and is achieved by lightly tapping the string with the back of the hand while the string is already in motion.

The Slap Hammers

The slap hammers are used to create a smooth, legato sound and are achieved by striking the string with the back of the hand and then quickly hammering on the next note with the forefinger.

The Pull-off Slap

The pull-off slap is used to create a smooth, legato sound and is achieved by striking the string with the back of the hand and then quickly pulling off the next note with the forefinger.

The Slide Slap

The slide slap is used to create a gliding, sliding sound and is achieved by striking the string with the back of the hand and then quickly sliding the hand up or down the neck to the next note.

The Trill Slap

The trill slap is used to create a rapid, repeating sound and is achieved by striking the string with the back of the hand and then quickly alternating between the forefinger and the middle finger.

Man playing bass guitar

Guide: How to Play Slap Bass

Step 1

Position your hand. When you slap the bass, you will be using your index finger and your thumb. Your index finger should be on the string right above the fretboard, and your thumb should be on the string right below the fretboard.

Step 2

Hit the string. To slap the bass, you will need to hit the string with your index finger and thumb at the same time. You should hit the string hard enough so that it makes a loud sound.

Step 3

Fret the string. After you have slapped the string, you will need to fret the string with your index finger. This will stop the string from vibrating.

Step 4

Release the string. After you have to fret the string, you will need to release the string. This will allow the string to vibrate again.

Step 5

Repeat. You will need to repeat these steps to play a slap bass line.

Guitarist playing guitar in studio

Frequently Asked Question

Can You Slap Bass Without an Amp?

Yes, you can slap bass without an amp by using a method called direct injection. This involves using a pickup to send the amplified signal from your bass directly to your amplifier or PA system.

Does Slapping Damage Bass?

Slapping is unlikely to do any major damage to a bass. There are some basses that are specifically designed to withstand the impact of slapping, and these instruments will usually be fine. Other basses may be more fragile, and it is possible that slapping could cause cracks or other damage. It is always best to consult the manufacturer or a qualified repair person before attempting to slap bass.

Red and white guitar on the sofa

Are Active Basses Better for Slapping?

Active basses are generally considered to be better for slapping due to their higher output and increased sustain. Additionally, active basses typically have a wider range of tones that can be achieved, which can be beneficial for those who want to experiment with different sounds.

Conclusion

There are many different techniques that a bass player can use in order to slap their bass. It is important to experiment with different techniques and holds to find what works best for you.

Slapping is a lot of fun! It can be very satisfying to lay down a nasty groove with some funky bass slaps. So if you’re looking to add some spice to your bass playing, or just want to have a good time, learning how to slap is a great idea.

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