Transcription: Viktor Lörincz’s “Boomerang”
This month’s transcription is “Boomerang”, a funk-filled slap-fest from Hungarian bassist Viktor Lörincz we originally featured back in 2011. This chops-heavy piece is a great workout for anyone looking to take their slapping and tapping skills to the next level.
Download the transcription (PDF) and follow along:
Viktor opens the piece with a Latin-flavored tapping part which outlines a series of descending ii-V progressions: Bm7-E7, Am7-D7, Gm7-C7, F#m7-B7. This leads neatly into the first slap section which is based around an E minor key centre. When tapping this opening section notes marked with a + symbol are tapped with the right hand using the first and second fingers. The lower notes, marked with a + inside a circle are to be tapped with the left hand.
The slap sections of this song all utilize a number of different elements: thumb slaps, pops, left hand slaps, and upstrokes with the thumb. As with all slap grooves there are many different combinations of these elements that will result in the same line, but what is notated here is what I believe Viktor played.
The section at letter E features a two-bar motif that starts with two strummed chords: G/B and C5. This is then ‘answered’ by a slap fill in the following bar. The first of these fills (bar 22) makes use of triplet popped figures, so you’ll need to be comfortable popping with both the first and second fingers in order to pull this off successfully. This section ends with a sixteenth note triplet tapping line in the style of Billy Sheehan. Each group of six notes is played like this: a right hand tap followed by a pull-off to the lower note, then a hammer-on to the next note. The sixth note of each beat is on the D-string and is hammered on with the left hand only. This pattern is then repeated up the neck, remaining firmly within the key of E minor as it moves.
At letter F there are a number of open-hammer-pop figures which are undoubtedly inspired by Victor Wooten. This technique is used to outline the chords, and is very effective for doing so. the pattern used here is a thumb slap on the open A-string, a hammer-on to the root of the chord, and a popped note, which is the seventh of the chord. This is followed by a slapped open D-string, a hammer-on to the third of the chord, and a popped seventh. Note that the open strings do not form a part of the chord, they are merely ‘jumping off’ points for the hammer-ons. As this section draws to a close Viktor reintroduces the Intro tapping theme.
The second slapped section, beginning at letter H is different to the first part, and contains many sixteenth note triplet figures and open string runs – take your time with this, and follow the notation guides carefully.
The remainder of the piece reuses most of the early parts, and the track finishes with a tapped D#7 chord, which slides upwards to an E7. The left hand frets the root of these chords, while the right taps the third and the seventh.
Good luck with this piece, it’s a great one to have under your belt. I certainly enjoyed transcribing and learning it!
Stuart Clayton writes for and runs Bassline Publishing, a small company who specialize in bass guitar tuition and transcription books. Check out basslinepublishing.com for more.