The Blues Brothers – ‘She Caught the Katy’

‘She Caught the Katy’ is an old blues song written by Taj Mahal and James Rachell. It has been covered by many different artists, but the best-known version is probably this one, which comes from the soundtrack to the 1980 film The Blues Brothers. This song features Stax legend Donald ‘Duck’ Dunn on bass and […]

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Level 42 – ‘Running in the Family’

‘Running in the Family’ was one of Level 42’s biggest hits, reaching #6 in the UK charts in February 1986. The song features a relatively simple slap bass part from Mark King, but it’s a line with several hidden treasures: fretting hand slaps, sixteenth note-based licks and major/minor tenths are all put to use here, […]

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Stevie Wonder ‘Sir Duke’

‘Sir Duke’ is one of Stevie Wonder’s biggest hits and was recorded for his 1976 double album Songs in the Key of Life. The song was written as a tribute to jazz musician Duke Ellington, although the lyrics also contain references to Count Basie, Glenn Miller, Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald.  The bassline for this […]

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Pleasure – ‘Glide’

‘Glide’ was the biggest hit for American jazz-funk group Pleasure. Released in 1979, the song was written by bassist Nathaniel Phillips, and reached #10 on the Best Selling Soul Singles Chart. Featuring a fantastic, slapped bass part, the song has continued to find popularity with bass players over the past forty years. Be sure to […]

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The Beach Boys – ‘Good Vibrations’

The sixties were an experimental time for musicians, none more so than The Beatles in the UK, and The Beach Boys over in the U.S. Although The Beach Boys began life as a surf rock band, under the stewardship of chief songwriter Brian Wilson they evolved into a far more sophisticated outfit during the mid-late […]

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FREE Sample Exercises

This course is perfect for those who have worked through the Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced slap bass modules and are looking for additional practice material. In this series of courses, we’ll be playing lines built around techniques such as ghost notes, fretting hand slaps, chord strumming, double popping, tenths, machine gun triplets, double thumbing, open-hammer-pop […]

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Slap and Pop Grooves – Part 1

The exercises in this course make use of the fundamental elements of the slap bass technique: thumb slaps, popped notes, hammer-ons and pull-offs. In addition to these basic elements, you’ll need to give consideration towards muting the strings that you aren’t playing, in order to prevent them from ringing unnecessarily.  You can learn more about […]

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Slap and Pop Grooves – Part 2

The exercises in this course make use of the fundamental elements of the slap bass technique: thumb slaps, popped notes, hammer-ons and pull-offs. In addition to these basic elements, you’ll need to give consideration towards muting the strings that you aren’t playing, in order to prevent them from ringing unnecessarily.  You can learn more about […]

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Fretting Hand Slaps

Fretting hand slaps are percussive ghost notes that are performed by striking the strings with the fingers of the fretting hand. This is essentially a more forceful version of the way in which you might lightly touch a string to stop it from ringing. Fretting hand slaps have been used by many bass players over […]

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Using Tenths

Tenths – compound major and minor thirds – are an important part of the bass player’s toolkit, regardless of which playing style you are using. When it comes to the slap technique, tenths are often employed as an alternative to popped octave notes, bringing the added benefit of greater harmonic clarity to a line. There […]

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