Tommy The Cat by Primus features one bad ass slap bass riff from the master of weird ass bass: Les Claypool!!

The Great Les Claypool!

Les Claypool is a legend in the world of rock bass. His atonal riffs and world class technique combine to create a unique style and voice unlike any other.

Les burst onto the alternative rock scene in the late 1980s as the front man and bass player with the band Primus and has since worked with many other musical innovators such as Tom Waits, Adrian Belew and Buckethead while fronting several side projects like the Claypool Lennon Delerium.

The Claypool Approach

Les uses a variety of bass techniques such as chord strumming, slapping, popping, tapping and harmonics in creating totally unique and incomparable bass lines. This is all executed while performing his similarly unique vocal duties. There is simply nobody like Les Claypool.

The song Tommy The Cat is a perfect example of his interesting approach. Taken from the Sailing The Seas Of Cheese album, this Primus track features a every aspect of Les Claypools technique. The main riff presented here is a 16th note line containing rapid chordal strums and a tricky slap/pop groove.

Approach With Caution!

Be warned, Tommy The Cat is not a riff for bass beginners. You will need a high level of general playing technique and a well developed thumb. The video provides tips on all of the many hurdles you’re likely to encounter in this single bar of music.  Good luck and start slow!

Tommy The Cat – Les Claypool’s Toughest Riff?

Practice Tracks:

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