I really can't think of anyone better. If you count Levin as an '80s' bassist then Levin puts up a fight I guess...but as for the whole Flea vs Les Claypool thing, in my mind there's never been a comparison.
When I mentioned the 80-90's thing the only one I could think of who could give Flea competition was Claypool. Levin actually came out of the 70's but became well known in the 80's through his work with King Crimson. Les Claypool is a technical wizard and can play any kind of music but I enjoy listening to Flea's playing more.
The Flea vs Les thing is very interesting. They're both divinely touched in terms of creativity, they're god tier, they're insane. The difference is Les composes songs on bass and the rest of the band (guitar+drums) plays around him (I'm almost positive of this), whereas Flea, at least during the Frusciante era, largely plays his parts over Frusciante's compositions. In a way, Flea impresses me more in this regard, being equally creative vs Les while not just doing it by writing funky parts and then having the band play around him. Anyone with enough time and enough imagination could come up with really weird, cool bass parts and then ask a band to play over them...fewer could do what Flea does, here. (I'm not saying everyone is Les Claypool or that other people's parts would even touch his in creativity, but you know what I mean)
It seems to me Flea comes out of the McCartney tradition in terms of his approach to playing primarily - at least on his best, 90s/2000s stuff. Les, again, composes songs (if you can call his compositions 'songs') on bass. Nothing wrong with that, mind you -- I compose songs on bass too! It's awesome
Anyway Flea has this sort of melodic subtlety that is exceedingly rare I think it matches Macca. To be honest what Les does doesn't impress me quite as much from a talent perspective.
OMG...If Flea is #8 then Pino HAS to be #7. I do remember the Chili Peppers back in the early 90's as a sort of punk/neo funk band with a growing cult type popularity. Flea has obvious skills, but I personally think you guys are going just a LITTLE overboard here LOL.
Nah. I'm w Ssoyd here. You're not familiar enough with Flea's best playing, which really started in the mid 90s and peaked on the Californication album in '99 I think.
Nate Watts is good..but not real versatile and could justifiably drop a bit IMO. A lot of Stevies popular bass parts were...Stevie (on synth).
Yeah he did look a little high to me, thanks for the input! Has he done anything else great other than Stevie, that we should know about?
Bernard Odum was one in a long line of nasty, funky JB bassists and made an imprint in JB's funk evolution. Those bass players and drummers always locked incredibly. Papas Got A Brand New Bag (featuring Odum) is 60's funk at it's best.
But other than having the honor of playing w JB did he appreciably affect the art and sound of rock bass playing? Did he have a distinctive style, or help popularize a particular approach to the instrument?
Earth to forum...
It's a pleasure to agree to disagree with you Ssoyd ... Just opinions. It'ts like the old golf addage..."you drive for show and putt for dough". In bass you "slap for show and groove for dough". Flea is famous for his driving. I'd like to see how he could fit with other drummers (Garibaldi, Chambers etc) outside his RHCP comfort zone. I'd also like to see him performing in clothing other than his underwear
. Other than the point I was making with Pino (who kills Flea in versatility IMO), I don't see Flea approaching Rocco in several areas including influence.
At the 1999 Woodstock Concert Flea performed totally naked. I bet Rocco and Pino couldn't, or wouldn't do that.
Good point about Flea performing away from RHCP. I get the feeling he would do well but he hasn't proven that like Pino who's strongest trait could be versatility.
Rocco is if, anything, so stuck with one style that I have strong doubts about his versatility. I saw a video of him performing in some Bass Day concert where he was playing with unfamiliar musicians and other bass players and he played the same stuff he always does. In addition Rocco says that he derived his style from playing with Garibaldi so how would he fit in playing with different style drummers. Due to the fact that RHCP plays a more eclectic mix than than Tower of Power I'd say Flea's more versatile. I have doubts that Rocco has been more influential than Flea if for no other reason than he's less well known but Rocco has been around a lot longer.
Flea actually was the bassist on Alanis Morisette's Jagged Little Pill album, I haven't heard it but it's singer songwriter which is rather different from much RHCP. He also played on one of The Mars Volta's albums (the whole album), which is like really weird contemporary prog. Moreover he's covered quite a bit of stylistic ground WITHIN RHCP from pure funk to funk rock to soloing, effects/pedals usage, playing both rhythmic and melodic/McCartney-esque roles, even touching on experimental rock playing on the By the Way
album in 2002. Allmusic remarked that he and John Frusciante "push and pull, rave and rumble, lie back and rock out -- pretty much spit out anything they can do on their instruments over the course of 28 songs" on 2006's Stadium Arcadium
. The song "Hard to Concentrate" on that album sees Flea playing basically a latin accompaniment on what sounds like - probably isn't, but definitely sounds to my ear like upright.
Flea also played with the guy profiled in the movie The Soloist
, the violin guy from LA. That takes a certain willingness to experiment, obviously! (And a big heart, something Flea has shown he has time and time again...though this is kinda off topic)
Anyway, I also have strong doubts about whether Rocco would win influence against Flea. I suspect he wouldn't actually.
Ariel...hope you're feeling better. Don't tighten that G string so much and you won't get popped in the eye again. Stay away from those ER's.
Haha I'm good now, thanks. Really nasty stomach flu...really nasty..but all better now
Is Chris Wolstenholme good enough for Top 100 yet?
I'd think so, though I really don't know his playing at all. Macca outright told the press that he was impressed with the dude's playing, and that doesn't happen too often. "Hysteria" is pretty famous and cool.