Pop the String

The Pop is a technique where you literally pull the string away from the fretboard and let it fall back on the neck, creating a sharp, snappy sound that is associated with slap bass.

This bit of technique is normally associated with funk music and the thumb slap, although, that's not all that it can be used for. You can also use it to add a percussive element to any bass line.

Some people believe that this is bad for the strings, but I've never really had any problems with strings breaking because of this technique.

In order to do this, you simply hook a finger (usually the index finger) under a string and you pull away from the fingerboard and then let it go.

Think of your finger like a hook. Your finger should hook the string and be able to hold on to the string until you need to let it go.

Remember that you need to pull the string AWAY from the fretboard and not just above the fretboard.

The best sound can be gotten from the bass when you use Roundwound strings and you have your strings close to the fretboard. Having your strings too far away for the neck will make it difficult to make your pops sound clear and ring true.

You should also try to do this closer to the neck rather than the bridge. Playing this around where the end of the neck meets the body will make for a more aggressive and powerful sound than playing near the bridge will.

Try adding these to Fingerstyle Basslines to give them a bit more of a push and drive.

There is no limit to what you can think to do with this, so experiment and see what you can come up with.

Return to the Slap Bass page from the Pop page

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