What's the best action for slap?

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beagle
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What's the best action for slap?

Post by beagle » Sun Jan 07, 2007 6:31 pm

Hey what do you find is the best action for slap? Mine is set quite low and seems to be ok but is prone to fret buzz with hard playing. I tend to play quite lightly to compensate... What do you recon's best?

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Post by timi » Sun Jan 07, 2007 11:14 pm

The best action for slapping is to not slap at all :wink:

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Post by Dan » Sun Jan 07, 2007 11:27 pm

Now why would you say a thing like that timi?

Personally a lower rather than higher action is good for slapping (for me).

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Post by beagle » Mon Jan 08, 2007 8:08 am

timi wrote:The best action for slapping is to not slap at all :wink:
oh u don't know what yr missing!!!!! :lol:
don't tell Sue Bradford but I think slapping is entirely appropriate!!!!!

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Post by Dan » Mon Jan 08, 2007 1:07 pm

beagle wrote: don't tell Sue Bradford but I think slapping is entirely appropriate!!!!!
Haha I see what you did there :D

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?

Post by definite » Wed Jan 10, 2007 11:45 pm

timi wrote:The best action for slapping is to not slap at all :wink:
i don't get the 'anti-slap' sentiments, it seems pretty common in bass player forums :?: - personally i wonder how you could not like slapping! when done well its awesome and just elevates the bass as an instrument to another level. its that chance for the bass to hump your face and freak your mind at the same time! :lol:

im asking for trouble with this, but i wonder sometimes if the people who hate on 'slappers' (lol) do so cos they cant do it themselves?! :wink:

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Post by definite » Wed Jan 10, 2007 11:48 pm

oh and to comment on the actual thread - i find it better not to have too low an action, cos you need to really dig into the notes when you slap to get the attack and full tone and avoid fret buzz.

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Re: ?

Post by timi » Thu Jan 11, 2007 12:21 am

definite wrote:
timi wrote:The best action for slapping is to not slap at all :wink:
i don't get the 'anti-slap' sentiments, it seems pretty common in bass player forums :?:
I think its not tasteful, its like a drummer with 4 toms who is playing more fills than beats.

I havent actually come across much 'anti-slap' in forums, but to be honest I tend to stay away from bass forums. The way they describe how they record bass scares the *BANNED* out of me.
definite wrote: im asking for trouble with this, but i wonder sometimes if the people who hate on 'slappers' (lol) do so cos they cant do it themselves?! :wink:
I learnt a few slap tricks when I first started bass, but knew that unless you are in a funk band or play covers where you need to slap, theres no need.
To be honest I'm not good at slapping, but thats not why I hate it.
I'm not good at it because I hate it.

Theres some damn talented slappers around though.

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Post by Dan » Thu Jan 11, 2007 12:39 am

I couldn't disagree more with you Timi.

Slapping is like using a pick (see other thread). Its not just for funk or showing off, its a whole tonal thing too. Using your thumb in slapping is not too dissimilar to using a pick....in fact the whole concept is the same, striking the string to get extra attack. Quite often I'll play simple lines just thumping with the thumb.

I wouldn't dismiss anything on the bass, for example I'm not a huge pick player...but I have nothing against it and sometimes use a pick in the studio to get the "pick" sound.

Music is all about being open, yet is also all about opinion, so everyone is entitled to their own


:wink:

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Post by BrendonM » Mon Jan 15, 2007 9:18 am

Each to their own. Timi it is great that you have found an approach for you which suits your requirements, and also that you understand the things you find easy and not so easy as this gives a clear pathway for learning should you wish to learn something completely 'non-timi' :)

Like Dan I do not wish to negate any style or approach, as remaining open to such things may help us become a more rounded player.

Action:
I prefer a low action for the sake of economy. This obviously needs to be balanced with minimal fretbuzz as essentially one should achieve clarity. I find that the lower action can allow a faster and easier transition between slap and pop in instances where the piece requires it. In saying that I find that the style of bass itself can also define the most comfortable position to slap and pop in. I have found some basses to occassionally be harder to get my fingers under to pop comfortably and with the conviction that is required. So finding the right bass for you is very important. Things like this can affect the way we play as we have to compensate in instances where the bass and setup is not ideal.

Usage:
To slap or not to slap, that is the question. Would a slapped note sound any different if it were tapped, popped, plucked, picked or strummed? The answer is 'Absolutely'. The reasoning is different depending on the artist. I say artist in this instance because we are painters of a bass soundscape and in our tool kit we have each of these approaches to allowing a note to sing and it will sing differently depending on how we hit it. Whilst some may slap or tap because they wish to show their contrapunctal talents, hot new licks, wish to expell their frustrations - Others will pick and choose.
I slap when I a cover song calls for it in terms of style, I also will slap (or tap) a phrase if I wish to pronounce it differently. A recorded song has the advantage of studio effects and mastery so as a working muscian it is up to us to use all of our tools available to us to make a best effort at the verbatim.
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Post by beagle » Mon Jan 15, 2007 10:25 am

Thanks guys. You've confirmed what I've been thinking.
BrendonM made a good comment about each instrument being different and everyone has different tastes / requirements. I had a stingray once and found it like pulling teeth to slap, obviously Flea from Chillis doesn't have that problem.

I keep an open mind about all techniques. For me fingered is the main course, slap 'n pop gives additonal tonal colour in the right application, and picked would be in there too if I remembered to keep picks in my pocket!

It really does depend on the style of music ya play and your own personal pref.

p.s. Thanks for stirring it all up timi! Makes for great reading! :lol:

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Post by timi » Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:13 am

beagle wrote:p.s. Thanks for stirring it all up timi! Makes for great reading! :lol:
Hehe.
I guess I am open minded to a point, but slapping involves many things that I really dislike. I've seen too many nu metal bands with show off bassists.

Perhaps in 20 years I will be playing a 6 string bass into a solid state biamped rig with a DI and chorus pedal in front......and wear slacks

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Post by beagle » Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:23 am

timi wrote:I've seen too many nu metal bands with show off bassists.
Yeah good call
timi wrote:.....and wear slacks
of course you might be wearing Stubbies 8)

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Post by Dan » Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:28 am

Pfft stubbies, I'm classy.

Jeans and jandals for me.

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Post by beagle » Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:31 am

DanAntunovich wrote:Pfft stubbies, I'm classy.
Jeans and jandals for me.
I can hardly wait till the tight leopard skins trousers come back in again! :lol: (yes I'm joking dufus)

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