Benedictus (Song of Zechariah) by the band For Today is an extremely fun riff to play and is much easier than it appears. Check out the video of me playing it (quality isn’t great).
Here is the tab for the intro riff-
The tab is pretty easy to understand, the “/” means a slide. A slide is when you literally slide your hand up or down some frets, without taking pressure off the notes.
This song will help you work on timing as well. If you count it out, it’s based in 3/4. Thats three quarter notes per measure, compared to the most popular time signature, 4/4, having 4 quarter notes per measure.
Practice the jump and pretty soon you’ll be playing this riff way to often! If you have any comments or criticisms let me know below, or leave a comment on the youtube video.
Use the side of your thumb to strike the thickest string (E). Your thumb should make contact on the side of the knuckle and it should make a thumping noise. This takes lots of practice, just getting it to sound right.
Once you are comfortable with the E string, move up to the second-thickest string (A). I remember this part being very hard when I was initially learning slap bass. Don’t get discouraged, and continue practicing. After you can slap the E and A string, try the D and the G (G is the thinnest string).
Now, it’s time to build up your technique. Play the tab below and let the strings ring out. When you slap one string, it shouldn’t “mute” the others! It is important to establish dexterity and accuracy. No sloppy playing allowed.
Next, try this tab out. It uses octaves, like many popular slap bass riffs.
Awesome. Now, continue practicing and try learning some different songs that have slapping in them, or write your own material. You’re well on your way to becoming a well-rounded bass player. Keep practicing.
Arguably the most distinct and well-recognized method of bass playing is called “slap.” But what is slap?
I will explain the basic technique in the article but first you should hear what I’m talking about, so you have a reference for your slap practice.
Here is a really high quality video I found. If you want inspiration or ideas, just search ‘bass guitar slap’ on youtube.
The riff is pretty complicated but you can see his great technique and adds some “picking” (I will show you how to pick later). The word thump is what you want to describe your slap bass playing.
Here is a crazy video of Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers demonstrating his slapping abilities.
Listen to awesome bass music and watch some inspiring videos and get yourself pumped up to play slap bass. It is a long hard battle, and is never finished, so always be practicing and moving forward! Even the pros keep innovating and finding cool new ways to play slap bass.
In my next post, I’ll post the technique that I used when I first started out, and hopefully you’ll find it useful.