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 Post subject: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 8:36 am 
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100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists

Criteria: - Rock Bass Guitarists are ranked for their influence, innovation, creativity, versatility and technical ability. These criteria are not an exact science, but rather are loose guidelines to aid in determining a player's 'greatness' in the pantheon of rock electric bass guitarists.

Edited By: Ariel
Last Updated 12-19-2012

1. James Jamerson (Funk Brothers, session man)
2. John Entwistle (The Who)
3. Larry Graham (Sly & The Family Stone)
4. Jack Bruce (Cream)
5. Chris Squire (Yes)
6. Tony Levin (King Crimson, session man)
7. Paul McCartney (The Beatles)
8. Geddy Lee (Rush)
9. Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
10. Les Claypool (Primus)
11. Chuck Rainey (session man)
12. Geezer Butler (Black Sabbath)
13. Joe Osborn (Wrecking Crew, session man)
14. Rocco Prestia (Tower Of Power)
15. Phil Lesh (Grateful Dead)
16. Jack Casady (Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna)
17. Anthony Jackson (session man)
18. John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin)
19. Tim Bogert (Vanilla Fudge; Beck, Bogert and Appice; Cactus)
20. Billy Sheehan (Mr. Big, David Lee Roth, Niacin)
21. Cliff Burton (Metallica)
22. Steve Harris (Iron Maiden)
23. Bootsy Collins (Parliament, Funkadelic, solo)
24. Stuart Hamm (Joe Satriani)
25. John Deacon (Queen)
26. Aston "Family Man" Barrett (Bob Marley & The Wailers)
27. Donald "Duck" Dunn (Booker T. & the M.G.'s)
28. Bob Babbitt (Funk Brothers, session man)
29. Louis Johnson (The Brothers Johnson, session man)
30. Abe Laboriel (session man)
31. George Porter, Jr. (The Meters, session man)
32. Bernard Odum (James Brown, session man)
33. Carol Kaye (Wrecking Crew, session woman)
34. John Wetton (King Crimson, Asia)
35. Greg Lake (Emerson, Lake and Palmer)
36. Mike Rutherford (Genesis)
37. Mark King (Level 42)
38. Mike Watt (Minutemen)
39. Pino Palladino (session man)
40. Phil Chen (Rod Stewart, session man)
41. Bernard Edwards (Chic)
42. Matt Freeman (Rancid, Operation Ivy)
43. John Myung (Dream Theater)
44. Ronnie Baker (MFSB)
45. Mike Gordon (Phish)
46. Will Lee (session man)
47. Roger Glover (Deep Purple)
48. Verdine White (Earth, Wind & Fire)
49. Willie Weeks (session man)
50. David Hungate (Toto, session man)
51. Doug Wimbish (Living Colour, session man)
52. Andy Fraser (Free)
53. David Ellefson (Megadeth)
54. dUg Pinnick (King's X)
55. Robert Trujillo (Metallica, Suicidal Tendencies, Ozzy Osbourne, Infectious Grooves)
56. Bill Wyman (The Rolling Stones)
57. "Ready" Freddie Washington (session man)
58. Nathan East (Eric Clapton, session man)
59. Phil Lynott (Thin Lizzy)
60. Ryan Martinie (Mudvayne)
61. Dave LaRue (Dixie Dregs)
62. Oteil Burbridge (Allman Brothers Band)
63. Andy West (Dixie Dregs)
64. Trey Gunn (King Crimson)
65. Jerry Jemmott (session man)
66. Bill Black (Elvis Presley)
67. "Sweet" Charles Sherrell (James Brown, session man)
68. Gary "Mani" Mounfield (Stone Roses)
69. Juan Alderete (Racer X, Mars Volta)
70. Ray Pohlman (session man)
71. Me'Shell NdegéOcello (session woman, solo)
72. Tommy Cogbill (session man)
73. Glen Cornick (Jethro Tull)
74. Tim Commerford (Rage Against The Machine)
75. Mick Karn (session man)
76. ??? [not determined yet]
77. ???
78. ???
79. ???
80. ???
81. ???
82. ???
83. ???
84. ???
85. ???
86. ???
87. ???
88. ???
89. ???
90. ???
91. ???
92. ???
93. ???
94. ???
95. ???
96. ???
97. ???
98. ???
99. ???
100. ??

(Old list/list template, last updated by Bassfreak on 11-08-05, can currently be found at http://digitaldreamdoor.com/pages/best_bassguitar.html)


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 8:01 pm 
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Glad we went back to the "old list", since it's better. Still needs considerable work tho IMO


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 9:47 pm 
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Claypool needs to be in the top ten IMO


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:10 pm 
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Why? Tiny influence, very limited stylistically. Which isn't to say he isn't a genius, 'cuz he is one.


Last edited by Ariel on Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:11 pm 
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Well I'll ask this...who should he jump over? Not Flea IMO...and are you familiar with Johnson & Jackson's contributions?


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:24 pm 
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ariel wrote:
Well I'll ask this...who should he jump over? Not Flea IMO...and are you familiar with Johnson & Jackson's contributions?


Well you know more about bass than me, so I'll take your word for it. Claypool is just one of my personal favorites. Actually, I think he is better than Flea, but like I said you know more than me about bass players. You stick with the bass, I'll stick with the drums ;)


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:28 pm 
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He's a genius alright. By the criteria he lacks in influence & versatility tho. He might be able to make #10 or something.

Les -

CRAZY creativity (15/15?)
Poor influence (3 out of 10?)
Good innovation
Not great versatility as far as I can tell
Very high tech skill


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:29 pm 
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BayPineapple wrote:
ariel wrote:
Well I'll ask this...who should he jump over? Not Flea IMO...and are you familiar with Johnson & Jackson's contributions?


Well you know more about bass than me, so I'll take your word for it. Claypool is just one of my personal favorites. Actually, I think he is better than Flea, but like I said you know more than me about bass players. You stick with the bass, I'll stick with the drums ;)


Lol...and we'll invade each other's forums ;-) (for as long as I feel like being a real active member anyway, which might end tomorrow for as far as I know)

The Flea/Claypool debate raged like hell back in 2005. Flea's way superior influence and versatility ensured he'd be higher, as I recall.


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:31 pm 
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I would just like to add that I think James Jamerson is a splendid choice for number one. There was this guy on youtube who was trying to convince me that Geddy Lee (who is a great bass-player in his own right) was better than Jamerson. Lee might be more skilled, but Jamerson is the King of bass players IMO.


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:40 pm 
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Jamerson takes a big shit on Lee who's overrated anyway.

I think Jamerson's fixed at #1.

Check out "Darling my Dear" by the Jackson 5...think that's what it's called


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 12:14 am 
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BayPineapple wrote:
I would just like to add that I think James Jamerson is a splendid choice for number one. There was this guy on youtube who was trying to convince me that Geddy Lee (who is a great bass-player in his own right) was better than Jamerson. Lee might be more skilled, but Jamerson is the King of bass players IMO.


No one is better than Jamerson.


I think John McVie deserves a place in the top 100.


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 1:12 am 
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I think JPJ and Deacon have both to move up...I could see JPJ around the top 10-15 and Deaky closer to the top 20 or even inside it.


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:02 am 
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D.J. wrote:
I think JPJ and Deacon have both to move up...I could see JPJ around the top 10-15 and Deaky closer to the top 20 or even inside it.


I agree 100%. Both are underrated because of the band members that surrounded them. JPJ played with Robert Plant, Jimmy Page and John Bonham while Deacon had Freddie Mercury, Brian May and Roger Taylor. As for their rankings, JPJ is Top 15 material, while Deacon is like 21-25 range IMO.


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 8:24 am 
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Agreed about JPJ.


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 Post subject: Re: 100 Greatest Rock Bass Guitarists
PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:01 pm 
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NO on JPJ (and on Deacon too). This was debated exhaustively on the old forum and JPJ tends to be considerably overrated on 'greatest' lists because he was in Zeppelin. He probably benefits more from the 'being in a great band' stature effect than any other prominent bassist. He was #22 I think on the old list and he deserves no higher than high in the 20s...or very low in the teens (like #19 or 20). And I love JPJ, he's the shit.

Deaky's fucking brilliant but by the criteria I can't see him getting higher than the 20s or 30s. As Bassfreak used to say, if you want someone raised argue by the criteria don't just come in and say 'raise x!' No offense


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