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Greatest Bass Players

Bass players, not only keep the beat of the music, they actually give life to a song. Les Claypool, lead bassist and vocalist of Primus, is one of the greatest bass players of all time, who has influenced the modern bassists.
A bass guitar is a stringed musical instrument, that plays the bass notes in music. Bass guitars play music on the bass or lower notes and are always played in accompaniment to the main guitar. The bass guitar accompanies with softer, bass (or low) tones, while the main or lead guitar plays high notes. Bass guitars are played in various genres of music like fusion, metal rock music, Latin, funk and blues music. It is also a favorite instrument of the jazz musicians. A music band consists of guitarists (both main and bass), keyboard players, percussionists, lead singers and other artists. There are many well-known bass players, who have a huge fan following.

Famous Bass Players
Bass players are an important part of any band, since they synchronize music, accordingly. With originality, talent and influence, these bass players have contributed towards music and popularized the concept of rock music.
  • John Paul Jones (born: 3 January 1946) - John Paul Jones is a very well-known bassist who plays for Led Zeppelin. He is a versatile musician who also plays the mandolin, the piano and other musical instruments. Though the most under-appreciated member of the band, John Paul created wonders with his music while accompanying John Bonham's improvisational and anarchic drumming.
  • Steve Harris (born: 12 March 1956) - Steve Harris is the band leader, lead bassist and primary song writer of the heavy metal band Iron Maiden. In fact, he was the founder member of this band along with Dave Murray in the year 1975. Right now, Harris is the only founder member present in the band.
  • Cliff Lee Burton (born: 10 February 1962, died: 27 September 1986) - Cliff Burton was one of the best bass players of the American thrash metal band Metallica. He is best known for his masterpiece (Anesthesia) Pulling Teeth. Metallica gained popularity because of Burton's unique musical style, of having a 'lead bass' approach and played a soloistic and melodic role in holding the rhythmic and harmonic foundation of the band.
  • Jaco Pastorius (born: 1 December 1951, died: 21 September 1987) - Born as John Francis Anthony, Jaco Pastorius was a popular American jazz musician and composer, who had a well acclaimed fame as an electric bass player. He is considered one of the most innovative, influential and greatest bass players.
  • Paul McCartney (born: 18 June 1942) - Born James Paul McCartney, Sir Paul McCartney is a renowned bass player of one of the most well-known bands ever, The Beatles. He is a very talented person and could play the bass guitar with an experienced hand. He has a number of talents like being the singer cum songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer.
  • Geddy Lee (born: 29 July 1953) - Geddy Lee, christened Gary Lee Winrib is well-known for being the lead bassist, keyboardist and vocalist of the Canadian rock band Rush. Only a three member band, the Rush used to sound like an orchestra when Geddy Lee got on to the stage to play the bass guitar. He is an award-winning musician and has proved to be an influential person in the genre of rock and heavy metal music.
  • Steve Priest (born: 23 February 1948) - Steve Priest is the lead bassist of the rock band Sweet. He used to play in local bands as a teenager and was influenced by bands like The Rolling Stones, The Who, etc. before he started a band of his own. The band Sweet was formed in January 1968, when Brian Connolly invited Priest to join him, guitarist Frank Torpey and drummer Mick Tucker.
  • John Entwistle (born: 9 October 1944, died: 27 June 2002) - John Entwistle was well-known as the lead bass guitarist of The Who. He was also a singer, songwriter and horn player and has been given the title of 'the greatest bass player in the history of rock'.
  • Phil King (born: 28 April 1960) - Philip King is the most entertaining bassist and is popular as the bass guitarist in Lush. He replaced Steve Rippon, who was the former bass guitarist of Lush, in 1992 and from then has been in the band.
  • Les Claypool (born: 29 September 1963) - Leslie Edward Claypool, popularly known as Les Claypool is another great bass player and is a bassist in the rock band Primus. He plays the electric bass and belts out finger tapping, funky music.
Popular Bass Players

A few other greatest bass players and the bands to which they belong are listed below
  • Flea - Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • John Deacon - Queen
  • Ashton "Family Man" Barrett - Bob Marley & The Wailers
  • John McVie - Fleetwood Mac
  • Noel Redding - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  • Bob Babbitt - Funk Brothers
  • John Wetton - Uriah Heep
  • Willie Dixon - Muddy Waters
  • Geezer Butler - Black Sabbath
  • Phil Lesh - Grateful Dead
  • Bootsy Collins - Funkadelic
  • Donald "Duck" Dunn - Booker T & the M.G.'s
  • Larry Graham - Sly & the Family Stone
  • Chris Squire - Yes
  • Tony Levin - King Crimson
  • Jack Bruce - Cream
  • Louis Johnson - Brothers Johnson
  • Sting - The Police
  • James Jamerson - Funk Brothers
  • Jack Casady - Jefferson Airplane
These bass players are the epitome of great musicians and who made such a huge difference and gave new meaning to the world of music.
By Marlene Alphonse
Published: 3/22/2010
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