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Slap Solo


davio

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WARNING: rant/plea for help ahead.

 

As I've stated several times, I suck at slapping. I've been able to get by so far with tunes like Carwash and Fantastic Voyage but now one of the singers from the disco band hired me to play a couple shows with her side project. Fine. Most of the music is pretty obscure and a lot of old blues but one of the tunes is called "Funkafied Blues" by E.C. Scott. It's a slap song. I've gotten so I can play the bulk of the song ok but there's a 12 bar slap solo toward the end and I feel like I just pooped my stomach out. Tonight is the last rehearsal (we didn't cover it last week) and the gig is Sunday. I can play about the first measure of the recorded solo.

 

The singer has told me that it doesn't have to be a slap solo because nobody will know the song but my other problem is that I suck eggs at improving any kind of solos. I've been performing in front of people since I was a kid but for some reason the thought of a solo that I haven't practiced scares the crap out of me. Maybe it comes from all the years of classical training. To add to that...I have no idea where to even start with writing my own solo. It's just a simple funky 12-bar progression in E for cryin' out loud!

 

Any suggestions other than "don't suck"?

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OK, you asked for that. Let's face it.

 

For this gig I recommend not trying to play the solo from the recording, especially if you're having trouble working it out.

 

Can you, however, play a fingerstyle solo in the spirit of that solo? 12 bars ain't so long you know, so that's going in your favor. One time through a typical jazz form would be 32 bars (assuming AABA with each part being 8 bars).

 

Is there any melodic or rhythmic figure in the original recording that catches your ear? If so, play off of that/build on that.

 

And, there ain't no shame in keeping it somewhat simple. You could stay mellow for four bars, ramp up intensity for four bars, and then ramp down intensity for four bars. Thus, your peak energy is from about bars 7-10.

 

Just some initial ideas off the cuff.

 

Peace.

--Dub $$

 

 

spreadluv

 

Fanboy? Why, yes! Nordstrand Pickups and Guitars.

Messiaen knew how to parlay the funk.

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I'd like to help but I suck at slapping too. Actually, it sounds like you may be better at it than me. Maybe try this. Find a reoccuring line in the song that you can do and work off that. As long as you capture the flavor of the song you'll do ok.

 

Oh, and don't suck. ;)

Lydian mode? The only mode I know has the words "pie ala" in front of it.

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Make up a solo at home and don't worry about improvising at this time. Your bass solo can start slow and build up to two fast bars at the end. Make faces while you play it. People will like it.

This is what I did for the rehearsal. It took me a while to hash out a line that didn't completely suck (even though it still kind of does) and I wrote it out on notation paper to stare at while playing tonight. I got through it and they made some comments about "cool, we have another soloist in the band...that'll be good in the future!" But I'm not sure if they were serious or not. I normally make it a point when joining a new band to tell them at the beginning that I don't enjoy soloing and therefor not to expect any from me but I guess that's hard to do when you're hired as a freelance musician.

 

I've never had a problem improvising nearly any kind of groove over just about any changes required of me but I have a really hard time coming up with solo or lead parts even if I'm sitting at home practicing by myself so it's not a problem with nerves. I honestly have no idea how to even start to work on this. I've had more music theory classes than I care to think about (not that I'm an expert by any stretch of the mind), formal lessons playing classical music out the bunghole and plenty of experience playing every type of music I can think of...so why is this so hard for me? Maybe it's a simple lack of creativity...?

 

Do worry about soloing for the future. It's time for you to improvise in public.

I've worried about it for years but worrying doesn't help me get any better at it. :)

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Phil W comes up with some tasty not so fast solos, he should be back to the UK this week, you could ask him for some tips.

 

As for my advice, sorry I suck at soloing

 

www.myspace.com/davidbassportugal

 

"And then the magical unicorn will come prancing down the rainbow and we'll all join hands for a rousing chorus of Kumbaya." - by davio

 

 

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Since this is an advice column......

 

Crank up the old Band-in-a-Box with the appropriate drum style clicked in, and go to town. And keep in mind that it's a blues tune. 4 plus 4 plus 4. The second four bars can (some say "should") be the first four bars repeated with maybe one note flatted. So really, you're only responsible for two sets of 4 bars of original music. You can do that.

 

Of course, what will happen is that you will totally kill, and the band leader will recognize this and shout, "Hey baby, take another chorus". And then you are sooooo totally screwed!!!!!!!!!!

Things are just the way they are, and they're only going to get worse.

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Of course, what will happen is that you will totally kill, and the band leader will recognize this and shout, "Hey baby, take another chorus". And then you are sooooo totally screwed!!!!!!!!!!

Haha! I already talked to her about it and we came to the conclusion that the song needs a bass solo but we'll limit it to 12 bars like the recording rather than extending it like they used to.

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Phil W comes up with some tasty not so fast solos, he should be back to the UK this week, you could ask him for some tips.

 

As for my advice, sorry I suck at soloing

 

Thanks David, that's what I aim for.

 

I've never taken too many slap solos. I used to do a regular one with an African band. I figured out what was the most I could play and then edited that down to a real minimal part. Then I started the solo with sparse notes and gradually built up into the busiest line. The danger would have been if I'd reached the busier line too early.

 

I prefer slap solos where you just play some kind of bluesy figures with the thumb and try to create some kind of melody by linking the development of the phrases.

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Isn't anyone besides me gonna give Davio the right advice?

 

Screw slapping. Set the bass on fire, throw it on the floor and then stamp on it until it goes out. That'll wake people up.

\m/

Erik

"To fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists of breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."

--Sun Tzu

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Set the bass on fire, throw it on the floor and then stamp on it until it goes out. That'll wake people up.

 

Sure, but that'll take more than twelve bars.

 

Unless you practice.

Things are just the way they are, and they're only going to get worse.

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Slap solo? How about slap the band leader for suggesting it?

 

As previously stated, just noodle in the right key and it will be fine. I find that improvising on the spot usually works out best. Saves you the whole "Okay, here we go, don't mess it up . . oh crap! NOOOO!" thing that goes on when trying to pull it off.

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

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I'd offer some advice but it would surely make you much much worse. I don't believe that's the direction you are looking to go in.

You can stop now -jeremyc

STOP QUOTING EVERY THING I SAY!!! -Bass_god_offspring

lug, you should add that statement to you signature.-Tenstrum

I'm not sure any argument can top lug's. - Sweet Willie

 

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Yeah, the gig was last night and it turned out to be at a fancy little restaurant...chef-named and -owned...and they served us dinner. The singer said 1) she doesn't eat seafood but if/when this guy puts seafood in front of her, she eats it because it's that darn good, and 2) she's gone there to eat before (on a night she wasn't playing) and between herself and a friend, she easily spent over $100 on dinner. It's one of those places. I had swordfish for the first time and it was absolutely heavenly!

 

Anyway, apparently the sax player (who is a long-time friend of the singer) is a ledgend around the area and plays somewhat regularly in Europe (mostly Italy). The guy blew my mind...and I've seen/heard/played with a lot of really talented horn players in the past.

 

Getting to the point, the 12-bars came and went without cause for alarm. I played some ever-so-slight variation on the solo I wrote last week (with the music sitting in front of me). It wasn't slap as the rest of the song was but I played finger style and I dug in so that parts of it sounded kind of like I was slapping. It was pretty cool but I have no doubt that I wouldn't have been able to do that on the spot without writing something ahead of time.

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Nice... sounds like a success story to me!

I considered pitching in with some advice prior, but as lug said, you want to do good, right, so I figured I'd keep my mouth shut.

I've only played with one horn player, and he wasn't that talented... he could play OK, but he wasn't any Kenny G or whoever it is that sax players look up to...

 

DX

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Nice... sounds like a success story to me!

I considered pitching in with some advice prior, but as lug said, you want to do good, right, so I figured I'd keep my mouth shut.

I've only played with one horn player, and he wasn't that talented... he could play OK, but he wasn't any Kenny G or whoever it is that sax players look up to...

 

DX

You might get run over in the parking lot durring load out if you compared a horn player to Kenny G.

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I've only played with one horn player, and he wasn't that talented... he could play OK, but he wasn't any Kenny G or whoever it is that sax players look up to...

 

DX

You might get run over in the parking lot durring load out if you compared a horn player to Kenny G.

Just goes to show you how many horn players I know... :whistle:

 

DX

Aerodyne Jazz Deluxe

Pod X3 Live

Roland Bolt-60 (modified)

Genz Benz GBE250-C 2x10

Acoustic 2x12 cab

 

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