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Two things i have trouble wiith. Ghost notes and Slap bass.

Posts: 349
Every now and then I come across a song that I want to play with ghost notes. I don't get them. Why not just play the notes instead of muting them or skip them all together and not even put them in the song. They don't sound good to begin with ? I also have a problem with slap bass. Any tips ? I have been playing awhile now as you guys know. But when you are self taught without lessons some things are confusing. And I want to understand this. Those are two of my pet peeves I want to conquer. I would appreciate your thoughts. Thanks ahead of time…
LoudLon [moderator]
Posts: 1840
Ghost notes are more about dynamics than anything. Muted notes are almost always about drive and rhythm, whereas ghost notes are more like adding punctuation marks into a run-on sentence.

I've always thought “slap” bass was a misnomer. “Slap” implies force, but it's not about force, it's about technique. You don't have to hit hard at all. You're just dropping your thumb against the string and then quickly bouncing it off the instant it makes contact. It just takes practice. Keep at it.
Posts: 474
I'm OK with Slap, it's the Pop part that I struggle with. For the slap part I just sat and hit my thumb against the open E string for about 30 minutes until I had the feel down. For me it was one of those things that was easier to learn the less I concentrated on it and just let my fingers do the work.
Hey Loudlon. Thanks for your explanation of ghost notes. It makes sense to me. I get it. Slap bass is a whole other story. It feels like I am trying to learn bass all over again with this style. In a way I guess I am. I appreciate your info and Nick thanks to you as well. I will just keep plugging along.
The Pop is my challenge too, I find if I curl my index finger and hook the string to get that nice popping sound. The slap part is more like a thunking of your thumb like LoudLon said. Just like everything else with the bass, it takes practice and patience.
Posts: 1
I was the same at the beginning, having never tried it. I started with Lenny Kravitz Fly Away.
It really is just practice, but I did find it easier hitting the string with my thumb nearer the base of the neck, rather than down by the pickups.

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