How To Play Slap Bass – The Muted Palm Slap

2019-02-09T15:02:23+00:00February 5th, 2014|Categories: Slap Bass|19 Comments

The latest in the How To Play Slap Bass series of lessons. This video covers the fretting hand muted palm slap that can be used to play percussive slap riffs and fills and can help you play all those lightning fast triplets like Mark King and Victor Wooten. Incidentally, the double slap triplet I cover at the end of the lesson is the same motion used by Les Claypool in his bass solo on Tommy The Cat.

For a complete method to learning Slap Bass Click Here for the Talkingbass Simple Steps To Slap Bass Method!

Lesson Material

For a complete method to learning Slap Bass Click Here for the Talkingbass Simple Steps To Slap Bass Method!

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  1. Doug Adduci February 26, 2014 at 4:40 am - Reply

    I am learning the slap bass technique, thanks to you and your great teaching videos. Could you break down and demonstrate the bass line for The Jam by Larry Graham as per this youtube video It goes by so fast that I can not figure it out.

    There is another dude that does a cover of the base line but I’m not sure he has it correct, and it also goes by too fast to really see what’s going on.

    I’ve been at this for about 6 weeks now. I’m getting the basics from your lessons but I’d really like to see this Larry Graham classic broken down.

    I will be making a donation to your project. You are the only guy I’ve found on the web that takes the time to actually teach the slap technique and not just show off.
    Doug Adduci Portland, Oregon playing off and on since 1967

    • admin February 26, 2014 at 11:22 am - Reply

      Just checked it out. Great bassline. I’ll try to make time in the coming week to do a breakdown of it. There’s only a few riffs involved so I’ll play it solo, then with a drumbeat. In the middle of recording some other stuff at the moment but I’ll definitely give it a go in a few days time. Thanks for the kind words!


      • Doug Adduci February 26, 2014 at 7:50 pm - Reply

        Thanks Mark. That’s awesome! I look forward to seeing what you come up with.

    • Mark S Beretta April 20, 2016 at 9:21 pm - Reply

      Doug this sounds darn good “The Jam” but I can’t quite make out what’s being played but can get close.
      I think Mark needs to play it , sounds like a good song if played right.
      The low bass beat sounds funky , the rest can be played easy.

  2. Ewald May 9, 2014 at 9:27 am - Reply


    All the Bass teachers Dude’s on the internet trying to show off in a way.
    You are the ONLY one who’s teaching something, not one lick or bassline but the hole package.
    Even if someone never play a bass he or she will understand you.
    For all the Low budget bassplayers make a donation and start here. The rest is a waste of time. Your basics cover in 17 lessons I got a basic book over the 200 page about it cost me around $90 its now in the bin.
    Thank you Mark

    • admin May 9, 2014 at 7:04 pm - Reply

      Thanks a lot. Glad you’re digging the lessons. I’ve tried to make the lessons as easy to grasp as possible. Good to know it’s working. Hope you like all the new lessons.

  3. Chris June 23, 2014 at 7:12 pm - Reply

    Hi great lessons but can you help as I just can’t get the muted slap sound using the muted palm technique…if hit down too hard the strings ring as you would expect but if hitting softer I get no slap sound…where am I going wrong ??

    • Mark June 25, 2014 at 10:58 am - Reply

      Try hitting with different parts of the hand. Half way down the fingers behind the first knuckle seems to help me. Also make sure to hit with several fingers, not just one. Hard to tell without seeing how you’re trying it but those are just some suggestions.

      • Chris June 26, 2014 at 1:08 pm - Reply

        Thanks Mark, I have tried but either don’t get the ‘click’ sound because trying not to hit too hard so strings don’t ring, but then if hit harder I then get the strings ringing…oh well keep on trying!!

  4. Larry R July 6, 2014 at 10:15 pm - Reply

    Thanks so much i really enjoy the lessons you are a very good teacher the best of the web i want send you for christmass a present for being a nice person helping peole i see you need a warwick send me you adress or some place to send it in december

  5. Uranium Enrichment April 14, 2015 at 2:18 am - Reply

    What’s up everyone, it’s my first pay a quick visit
    at this web page, and article is really fruitful
    for me, keep up posting such articles or reviews.

    • Mark S Beretta April 20, 2016 at 9:02 pm - Reply

      Everything is Uranium-ed up ,,, Platinum based .

  6. Socrates Viegas June 28, 2015 at 5:25 am - Reply

    Mark, thank you very much for these lesson. You are clear, precise and methodical. Really love your lessons.
    Socrates – NJ, USA.

  7. Kostiantyn Kuznecov March 2, 2016 at 12:32 am - Reply

    I want to say a big thank you for the great lessons. This technique is quite complicated. Especially, it is difficult to achieve a clean and correct sound. But thanks to this lesson, i got the right sound. Although it took a lot of time. .

  8. Mark S Beretta April 19, 2016 at 10:30 pm - Reply

    I love Mark King’s palm slaps in Love Games is so much fun to play ,
    Les is good but he freaks me out , my name is Mud.
    I was trying the flamm effect and thought how is Mark moving his thumb so fast going badeduleedum ,
    Then figured out it’s both hands working together on the open E string first then I moved it around.
    Sounds hard to play but it’s coordination in sequence.
    I’m gonna have fun now showing my friends the flamm effect.

    Badeduleedum ,,,

  9. Mark S Beretta April 20, 2016 at 8:58 pm - Reply

    That was flail ,,, flailing away , like sailing away , bye ,,,

  10. Qi Hickman August 15, 2016 at 12:47 pm - Reply

    Hi Mark,
    Thanks so much for your awesome lessons, i’m learning bass part of Johnny Got a Boom Boom for a band. I play guitar and only recently started to play bass, you have no idea how your slapping lessons saved me.
    Warmest regards

  11. Mark S Beretta March 20, 2017 at 11:19 pm - Reply

    I came back to this lesson today and have it down really good
    Thanks Mark

  12. Kurt Speers November 21, 2018 at 3:58 am - Reply

    I am so happy to have found this site. You really are an extraordinary teacher. I look forward to supporting this site. I may need to slow down, I was working on your Level 42 Live Games tutorial, but (after watching this) I now realize that I was just muting the strings with my fretting hand rather than slapping it.
    Thanks again!!!

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