Hey fellow bottom ends,

What is the technique to get that funky plucky sound like on the TV show Seinfeld?

Is part of that from using compression, or a compression peddle?  Also, know any

good you-tube videos for thumb/slap style?  I'm ready to ratchet up a level!

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Well the technique is a combination of slapping and popping. This is what gives that unique sound since the technique gives a very different attack than traditional finger picking.


A guy on you-tube does a pretty good job on what looks like MusicMan Stringray? (You Tube Link)


The real masters of this style was 70's funk players like Bootsy Collins. Google or YouTube him.


A great video is from Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers here: Flea Slap Bass Lesson


This is even crazier one from Flea: Flea Punk Rock Slap


I added a post about some funk EQ (pedals etc) on another thread in WTR: Must have pedals, boxes and DI's

Very helpful links, plus a couple others suggested next to those. Not sure how much

can be used with worship service but I do want to improve my playing in all areas!



I am not very good at this technique yet, but I find the main holding me back from using it right now if I had a chance is the volume dynamics.When I finger pick style, my volume is much much lower than slap. So if I'm changing styles mid-song, if I don't adjust the levels right I get mad clipping and distortion.


I know a lot of purist out the hate compression, but probably one of the only ways I could handle it on Sunday set where I'm not using Slapping & Popping all the time. That or a use of a processor (Bass POD) which I could pre-set volume settings. When I have tried slap, my bass comes out really 'hot'.


Maybe Jon W has good answer. I think he seems to switch styles mid-song?


Though when I see some of the greats like Bootsty on stage, they are always constantly changing volume settings, etc so maybe they are just better at it on-the-fly.


If you looking for something new...some "basic" funk may be useful (vs. Flea's Punk Rock). What Funk topic wouldn't be complete with some clips from Bootsy Collins and Larry Graham from Sly & Family Stones! :)


Sly & Family Stones - Thank You (slap & pop style)


Bootsy Collins - Funk Formula (just basic funk)

I would have to listen to the theme again, but I think the TV theme is actually played via MIDI possibly a keyboard the way that it sounds, but the samples it's playing come from a slap/popping bass sound like Wayne says.

Seinfeld had a keyboard on a slap bass setting. it is really quite horrible. 

Slap and Pop is the technique, and when done well, it can be cool and funky. I'm sure there are plenty of Youtubes for it. One of the hardest aspects of SAP is slapping the individual string with your thumb. the Popping part happes with wither your index finger or middle, depending on the string you are popping. 


I use it on my bass solo during 'Couldn't Stand the Weather', you can check out the tune in the link below. The solos (everyone gets one in this tune) start at 2:25 :



Fred Hammond and Andrew Gouche are to gospel players that are has good has anybody at slapping.



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