I'll be the first to admit that I cannot play a solid note of music on any instrument this side of a kazoo, however, I do have an ear for it and I can, when properly alcohol-ed, sing pretty well. All of that being said, I know what I like, and I know what sounds good. To me. I understand many of you, especially those who are monogamous and freakish fans of a particular musician may not see things my way. And to that end, I respectfully suggest you go make your own list, poopy head! Nah, I kid. This list was honestly a little bit of difficult since so many bassists are out there and so many have had major influences on a certain band. Take for instance the fact that I have, mayhaps erroneously, left John Entwhistle of The Who off the list. Why? Sure, I damn well agree that Pete Townshend is easily one of the greatest guitarist of all time, and even Keith Moon could arguably be considered a top ten drummer as well, but, in Entwhistle's case... sorry. I do hope that the list I have generated will at least make some of you excited. And to those that it pisses off completely, you don't know where I live, so NYA NYA!
:-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-)
10) TIM COMMERFORD (RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE, AUDIOSLAVE)
Some of Tom's best sounds come from Rage's Evil Empire. His thick, beefy sound melds well with Morello's licks and De La Rocha's sputtering, angst-ridden vocals. A notorious finger-picker, Tom's sound has a ripe richness all its own and can just as easily flow above the higher riffs as well as it can intertwine solemnly with the lead and rhythm.
9) JACK BRUCE (CREAM, THE BLUESBREAKERS, MANFRED MANN)
While with Cream, Bruce played a Gibson EB-3 electric bass and became the most famous bassist in rock, winning musicians polls and influencing the next generation of bassists such as Sting and Jeff Berlin. He also wrote most of Cream's original material, with lyricist Pete Brown, including the hits, "Sunshine of Your Love", "White Room", and "I Feel Free".
8) MICHAEL ANTHONY (VAN HALEN)
Surviving 3 separate incarnations of Van Halen, Michael Anthony was steadfast in honing his skill and always being the consummate professional backing Eddie, one of guitardom's gods. Standing out on such hits as Janey's Crying, Hot For Teacher, and Jump, Michael melds richness with finger-licking prowess and stands out as one of the best bassists ever.
7) JASON NEWSTED (METALLICA, VOVOID, ROCK STAR SUPERNOVA)
Following the death of Cliff Burton in September 1986, Metallica began a search for a new bassist. Jason Newsted auditioned for the part along with roughly 40 other musicians, and in winning the role, his first live performance with Metallica was at the Country Club in Reseda, California. He debuted on the group's fourth studio album, ...And Justice For All, which was subject to controversy and criticism for its poor production - namely its lack of identifiable bass. Newsted claims this was further hazing on the part of Lars Ulrich and James Hetfield. The album reached No. 6 on the Billboard Charts and projected the group to higher success. Once the follow-up, The Black album was released, Newsted finally achieved what all basists strive so hard for. PS- Incidentally, I met Jason at our local, once-opened watering hole, Club Soda in Kalamazoo, and, though surrounded on all sides by adoring fans, ie: chicks, he cordially signed a matchbook for me and did a mini-interview for our local paper. Cool cat.
6) JOHN PAUL JONES (LED ZEPPELIN)
Despite the spotlight invariably being placed on the more flamboyant members of Led Zeppelin, many cite Jones' temperament, musicianship and experience as crucial elements adding to the success of the band. He was responsible for the classic bass lines of the group, notably those in "What Is and What Should Never Be" (Led Zeppelin II), and power crunch and shifting time signatures, such as those in "Black Dog" (Led Zeppelin IV). As Led Zeppelin's rhythm section-mate with drummer John Bonham, Jones shared an appreciation for funk and soul rhythmic grooves which strengthened and enhanced their musical affinity.
5) MIKE GORDON (PHISH)
Blending fluidly and melding deliciously like icing on a sweetly musical cake, Mike Gordon flows remarkably with fellows Trey, Page, and John. As a founding member of jam-band, Phish, Mike makes each and every tune that much cleaner, thicker, and solid especially on such songs as, well, Mike's Song, NICU, and Fee. Though Phish has since disbanded, Mike still tours and puts out albums as a solo act and is just as astounding alone. PS- I have seen Phish seven times and I have to say, they are, hands down, my favorite live band of all time. It's man love all around, baby.
4) PAUL MCCARTNEY (THE BEATLES, WINGS)
There really is so little to say that hasn't already been beaten stupid about McCartney and his band, the eponymous Beatles. His influence is as far reaching as they come, and the band he played bass for can honestly be considered one of history's greatest musical acts of all time.
3) FLEA (RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS)
Flea has displayed a wide variety of techniques throughout the years, ranging from his initial use of slapping and popping to the more traditional methods he has employed since Blood Sugar Sex Magik. Greg Prato of Allmusic has noted that "by combining funk-style bass with psychedelic, punk, and hard rock, Flea created an original playing style that has been copied numerous times." Flea has been considered as one of the greatest bassists of all time.
2) GEDDY LEE (RUSH)
An award-winning musician, Lee's style, technique, and skill on the bass guitar have proven very influential in the rock and heavy metal genres, inspiring such players as Steve Harris of Iron Maiden, John Myung of Dream Theater, Les Claypool of Primus, and Cliff Burton of Metallica. In 1998, Fender released the Geddy Lee Jazz Bass. This "signature" model is a recreation of Lee's favorite bass, a 1972 Fender Jazz that he bought in a pawn shop in Kalamazoo, Michigan. HA!
1) LES CLAYPOOL (PRIMUS)
Doing absolutely ridiculous things to his bass, Les Claypool is a master of the art of 'slap-bass' and treats his instrument like a loving, yet naughty, child. His stage antics as front man of Primus are legendary as are the songs on such albums as Frizzlefry, Pork Soda, and The Brown Album featuring such bass-heated tracks as Tommy The Cat, Jerry Was A Race Car Driver, and My Name Is Mud. His style, admittedly influenced heavily by Geddy Lee, has done nothing to steer him away from his one true love -the real reason her plays, after all- fishing. Each album has at least one song about his past time, including John The Fisherman and Fish On. PS- I have seen Primus live twice and I have to say, it is an all together different feeling toward the bass guitarist when you witness Les bounce around like a lunatic while smacking some sense into his instrument. And yes, it's as sexy as it sounds.