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Songs you remember because of the bass line

Discussion in 'music' started by VanceB, Jul 15, 2003.

  1. VanceB

    VanceB Member

    I was having a discussion with my girlfriend Monday night, were she said, and I quote ' it must be boring playing Bass, surely lead guitar is better ?'

    Now, being a wanna be Bass player, well actually I do play but not brilliantly, I took exception to this. To start with I mentioned the likes of Flea and Mark King and it went on from there....The bass and drums being the 'rock' that holds it all together etc, etc.

    So I thought, what better way to highlight to her the importance of the bass than a number of songs, a fair few of which I have, that are basically remembered for the stand out bass line :D
  2. prowla

    prowla pfm Member

    ... but just one more thing:

    Northern Lights, by Renaissance.

    (Featuring yet another Ricky player!)
  3. Mick Seymour

    Mick Seymour Member

    Anything by Osibisa.

    I saw them live at the Rainbow as a teenager. The bass player had a bloody great long lead on the guitar and spend the gig strolling around the entire stage banging out the notes. Fabulous.

    Also, anything in my 70's album collection. I played bass in my bedroom to all my records. Favourites were Osibisa, Led Zep, Deep Purple, Fairport Convention, Mountain, Mott the Hoople, Flying Burrito Brothers, Jethro Tull etc, etc, etc.

    One of my neighbours has lent me a practice amp so the bass is coming out of the garage this weekend.

  4. prowla

    prowla pfm Member

    I used to be accused of playing lead-bass when I used to play in a band in school.
  5. redcogs

    redcogs Harbethian Popular Front

    Mmmm.. The issue that has arisen between VanceB and his significant other is probably much more interesting than the bass lines which have inspired.

    Not wanting to divert the thread or anything, but my memory of musical awakenings in the early 1960s is that the songs which attracted 'hung together' not as a consequence of either a powerfully significant bass line, or a distinct tune or riff, rather the skilfull blend of these two (and more) elements carried the day. Of course, lyrics quickly became hugely significant also, especially with the radicalisation usually associated with that particular period.

    In the end it is probably not helpful to dichotomise between bass and lead etc. More important to enjoy the total experience and recognise the interdependent nature of all the components within any piece of music? ;)

    redcogs boring old fart stuff
  6. VanceB

    VanceB Member

    Hi Redcog,

    I agree with you, a good analogy I think is listening to a studio album, then seeing the band live only to find they are useless !!

    The bass player and drummer can't keep it together, and as for the rest of the band, well they just go off and do their own thang.

    There have been a few bands I have seen that just don't cut it live, but I am not going to mention any names here. There are some though, that I feel are much better live than on a studio album. David Gray springs to mind here. A previous girlfriend of mine bought tickets to see him last year, and it was a superb concert. His drummer, can't remember his name, deserves a show all of his own.
  7. Gernot

    Gernot Active Member

    just another old one:

    does anyone remember The Motels `Total Control´?

    Pretty cool, cheers
  8. Paul Gravett

    Paul Gravett Good Bot Gone Bad

    I can't believe no-one has mentioned the bassline from 'Good Times' by Chic. Surely the grooviest ever and sampled in 'Rappers Delight' by the Sugarhill Gang and 'Another one bites the dust' by Queen, which has been mentioned.
    'Blue Monday' also has thunderously memorable bass, as do a lot of New Order/Joy Division records, eg New Dawn Fades, Love will tear us apart, etc
  9. Kit Taylor

    Kit Taylor Well-Known Member

    My goodness, I forgot Geezer Butler's awesome rumblings on Black Sabbath's "Into the Void"!

    That big, hollow, introspective sound defines how good bassline not only anchor but principally create the atmosphere of a song. For all the song's monolithic heaviness the bass gives it a sense of emptiness and depression, the instrument's gel but somehow sound really isolated from one another, which I guess was the Sabs fantastic drug addled anti-chemistry in action.

    It sounds so amazingly barren you have to wonder if "No Black Sabbath = no Joy Division."
  10. Ian F

    Ian F Member

    There was a track off the first Jefferson Airplane album (Takes Off) with a great Jack Cassady bass line.
    I think the song was Let Me In
  11. dss

    dss Musical Bons

    Some current favourites:

    Justin Timberlake - Rock your Body
    Michael Jackson - Billie Jean
    Can - Yoo Doo Right
    Revolting Cocks - Something Wonderful
    Edwin Starr - Contact
    Sono - Take Control
    Severed Heads - Greater Reward
    Hawkwind - Masters of the Universe
    Hardfloor - Hardtrance Acperience
    Sabres of Paradise - Smokebelch II

    (I could go on...)


    OTD - Emmanual Top - Detune my Fortune
  12. Richard S

    Richard S pfm Member

    Absolutely !

    I don't know the name of the guy either but he was such a showman at the gig I went to. Superb !

    The album "White Ladder" features a drum machine and was only recorded to home demo standards. Live, with a full engaging group DG was excellent and made me feel there is much more to come from this artist.
  13. SCIDB

    SCIDB Triode Man


    Here are a few for starters.

    Trammps Disco Inferno
    Taste of Honey Boogie Oogie Oogie
    Sweet Excorcist TESTONE
    Unique 3 The Theme
    James Brown Sex Machine
    Supremes Can't hurry Love
    Jean Knight MR Big Stuff
    Nightmares on Wax Aftermath
    Forgemasters Track with no name

  14. Ian Hughes

    Ian Hughes pfm Member

    Michael Manring carrying the melody on a fretless bass on "After the Goldrush" from Michael Hedges- Aerial Boundaries.
  15. Richard S

    Richard S pfm Member

    Van Morrison Live at the Grand Opera House Belfast.

    A highly underrated album IMHO. The moment the bass line from Into the Mystic starts up you know you are in for a great set.

    Vanlose Stairway and Rave on John Donne are the stand out tracks.

    David Hayes is the bassist. Anyone know anything about him ?
  16. dss

    dss Musical Bons

    Some more classic bass led tracks

    Public Image Limited - Public Image Limted
    Nasty Habits - Shadow Boxing
    Bad Company - The Nine
    Bad Company - Pulse
    A Certain Ratio - Waterline
    Public Enemy - Rebel without a cause
    Mantronix - Got to have your love
    Janet Jackson - When I think of you
    Renegade Soundwave - Cocaine Sex


    OTD - Out Hud / !!!
  17. Simon Dawson

    Simon Dawson Angry, Ill & Ugly

    Gang of Four. Most of it, but especially At home He's a Tourist.

  18. Fretless Eric

    Fretless Eric Musketeer Bathos

    I have had an enforced absence from anything Forum based but am slowly finding a route back [but I have missed a lot]. For now:-

    Brand X - first few bars of "Nuclear Burn" did it for me, the rest just winds up the wick. I know it's classed as "Fusion" but so what?

    Paul Young - first few bars of "Wherever I lay my hat" then you just can't listen to anything else in the song. [where have you been?]

    Alphonso Johnson - "Bahama Mama".

    Anything Jaco [eg "Cayote" by Joni Mitchell].

    Joan Armatrading - "The weakness in me".

    Not fretless but..

    XTC - "Mayor of Simpleton" top of the heap.

    Caravan - "Jack and Jill"

    This could run and run, it's hard to stop, thanks guys.

  19. P

    P Banned

    Current system tester for Bass handling is the opening track on

    The Blind Boys of Alabama - Spirit of the Century


  20. sideshowbob

    sideshowbob 47 Lab Rat

    Liquid Liquid, "Cavern" (lifted by Grandmaster Flash for "White Lines")

    Mingus, any of it

    Coltrane, a version of "My Favourite Things" from the Live in Japan records. Lasts for an hour, begins with a 15 minute bass solo by Jimmy Garrison

    -- Ian

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