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How to Do a Hammer-On & Pull-Off in Slap Bass

Learn how to do hammer-ons and pull-offs from musician Sam Lipman in this Howcast slap bass lesson.


Hi, my name is Sam Lipman. I'm a multi-instrumentalist. I make records and I will be releasing my first solo debut record here in the fall called 'A' for Aphorisms. Check it out We are gonna be playing some slap bass. Hammers-ons and pull-offs both a big part of slap bass technique involving the left hand. So, a hammer-on lets begin with a hammer on. And you may have heard of it from guitar because it's also a big feature in guitar playing. What you want to do is start out with this finger. I'm going to slap an A. Then I'm going to throw down these 2 fingers. To create the next note. Without this hand. It's all left hand, so. Do you see that? I'm going to do that all the way across on each string and I'm going to thumb. I'm going to slap and hammer-on. Lets try it real slow. Try to copy me. Ooh. Lets do that again. Okay. That's hammering. Pulling-off is the opposite. We begin with 3 fingers and we pull these 2 fingers and I like to pull them down towards the floor. Almost like I'm plucking. Leaving this finger to hold the next note, so. Did you see that? And it's usually followed. I like to follow it after a pop. So, I might hammer and slap and then I'll pop and pull off. Another exciting way to pull off on bass is to pull off on open strings like this. So, if I'm playing a riff like you can hear I create a lot of tension by pulling off onto open strings. So, happy slapping.

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