Wednesday Question: Best Bassline Ever?

Time to get your groove on and suggest the best bass riffs of all time. If you're a music expert with a good ear for basslines place your nominations and vote here.

Ultimate Guitar

This week we're asking you to get your groove on and answer one of the most hotly debated questions available:

What is the best bassline ever?

Post your nomination in the comments. We'll stack up the results and publish them in an epic top 10 list this Friday.

Everyone has an opinion on what is the most memorable, groovy or awesome baseline ever, but you're going to have to use some real musician instinct to nominate the best contenders.

Feel free to go beyond rock and metal songs - there's a tonne of sweet baselines out in the funk, dance and hip-hop worlds too. Of course, if UG readers think rock is best in the sub region, go ahead and vote that way.

Classic bass riffs that come to mind are "Good Times" by Chic, "Taxman" by The Beatles, "Schism" by Tool and "Money" by Pink Floyd. We're pretty confident that Rage Against The Machine will pull a few votes too.

Go ahead an post your nominations in the comments, and remember to share this list to friends with the Facebook and Twitter buttons on the right. Let's make the the best bassline top 10 ever!

749 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Alice in Chains - Would?
    I remember trying to play that when I was first learning. It's a snap now, but at the time, the timing was a bitch for me. I loved the way it sounded, though, so I kept on going.
    Another One Bites the Dust
    Soul To Squeeze- Red Hot Chili Peppers. Not a flash one but it drives the melody in the entire song.
    Also that little classical inspired bass lick flea throws in the last chorus is beautiful. I know it doesnt count as a bass line necessarily but I just hope it's appreciated by some
    Peace sells - megadeth
    I love this bassline and it surely deserves a mention on this page, but just FYI thats a rhythm-guitar part written by Dave Mustaine that David Ellefson followed on the bass.
    Roundabout - Yes is pretty good Tool's got a lot of great ones as well.
    One of my favorites has always been Dazed and Confused by Led Zeppelin.
    NIB by Black Sabbath
    Orion, if you listen to the bass, is actually an incredible bassline, and one of cliff burton's best pieces. also think death to all but metal by steel panther has a really good bassline
    Diony x
    My Friend Of Misery is effective too!
    That's a guitar riff created by James Hetfield that Jason imitated with his bass. I agree it's a cool riff though, and a very underrated Metallica song.
    Wrong. Jason said himself that he wrote that bassline with the intention of it being the instrumental on the Black Album. He gave it to James and Lars and they had a different vision. But he definitely wrote the bassline.
    yeah dude! i was gonna say that, 3 mad bass parts, 2 of which people mistake for guitar cliff's that cool!
    That one and Higher Ground Cover by the Red Hot Chili Peppers!!!
    Helter Skelter by The Beatles
    Technically there wasnt a bass in Helter Skelter. It was one of those Fender VI things that is an octave lower than a guitar. Lennon played it.
    It's still the bass line. And I'm surprised I was down voted. That's such a great bass line.
    Higher Ground is the funkiest... but George Baker Selection- Little Green Bag is easily the grooviest. (It's the opening music in Reservoir Dogs, for the most of you)
    ANYTHING John Paul Jones!
    Good Times, Bad Times,I just thought I'd share, John Paul Jones said it himself,this bassline Is the hardest one of his they put on the air
    I thought we already agreed that Joy Division's "Love will tear us apart" had the best bass line.
    Doesn't matter what anyone says...UG's gonna plug hysteria in anyways...its the season to hype muse up lol
    1 vote for New Born - Muse for me. Love that bass line. Learned it because it's so kick ass.
    Sweet Child o' Mine by GnR.. The bass line is by far the best thing in that intro.. and thoughout the song, except for the guitar solo ;P
    somebody some1
    Why's everyone forgetting about punk.. in general their bass lines are better. basically anything by Rancid should win
    Well, that's why I included Capitalist Casualties and Siouxie and the Banshees.
    Led Zeppelin - Dazed and Confused Bush - Comedown Deftones - Change Limp Bizkit - Re-arranged Staind - Mudshovel Pink Floyd - Money Beatles - Come Together Metallica - pulling teeth / sad but true / suicide redemption Black Sabbath - n.I.b. Machine Head - Now I Lay Thee Down Incubus - The Warmth
    The bass in the live version of No Quarter is the best, so subtle yet so supportive and brilliant!
    Not the biggest Tool fan, but Justin Chancellor made me want to play bass after I heard the intro/verse riff to "Schism". For a Tool song it was really gnarly.
    For a Tool song? most of their songs have awesome basslines!
    Yeah, but Schism to me had a sort of bluesy, hard-to-describe something to it that amazed was really different than anything I ever heard and it was super creative. But you are right...Justin is a beast and with Danny on drums they really have something special...all I was saying was that between songs like H. and Pushit on their Aenima album to songs like Schism and Ticks and Leeches...Justin really stepped his game up between albums
    that's probably because paul wrote alot of the Aenima basslines.. I think they just had him use them instead of him taking the time to write his own interpritation
    I think it was Justine that wrote a lot of the more intricate lines... The album wasn't written when Paul left... I heard, at least, that Justine came in for H, 46&2, Jimmy, Pushit and Aenima...
    Schism Peace sells,thing that shuld not be, Money,NIB, and Pulling teeth.
    Dazed And confused by led zeppelin (John Paul Jones) N.I.B. black sabbath (Geezer Butler) Powerslave iron maiden (Steve Harris) Highter Ground RHCP (flea!!) Hush and schism tool (Paul D'Amour and Justin Chancellor) Hysteria muse (Chris Wolstenholme) The Dark Eternal Night Dream Theater (almighty John Myung) ORION!! metallica (Mr. Cliff Burton)
    Would? And Jeremy
    I wholeheartedly agree. Both are simple, yet extremely effective. AIC's "Would?" has my favourite bassline ever. Dark, moody and powerful. With "Jeremy" i have a complicated relationship, because it was one of the first Pearl Jam songs i heard, so throughout the years i've associated it with different periods of my life... But still, its bassline is a close contender for Best Bassline Ever.
    Primus - Jerry Was a Race Car Driver Metallica - (Anesthesia) Pulling Teeth Green Day - Longview Nirvana - Love Buzz Local H - Bound for the Floor Rage Against the Machine - Take the Power Back Red Hot Chili Peppers - Readymade Alice in Chains - Would? Probably not the best basslines ever but I'm just giving a shout out to these songs
    I know it's a little bit late now but I forgot to mention '7 Words' by Deftones
    Primus: Wynona had a big brown Beaver
    After those 2 posts you are still forgetting Jimmy Was a Racecar Driver
    thank god, someone finally mentioned the works of les claypool, i was getting worried
    I learned to play bass after hearing Maxwell Murder by Rancid. But i also love me some Geddy Lee and Les Claypool
    I think people are mistaking basslines with solos... Money by Pink Floyd Slither by Velvet Revolver White Rabbit by Jefferson Starship Bad Motor Scooter by Montrose Tie your Mother Down by Queen Rocket Queen by GnR Primal Scream by Motley Crue Aerosmith have some cool basslines As much as I hate him, Gene Simmons has come up with some cool shit too. Anything by John Entwhistle, JPJ and Flea There are heaps more, I like Sabbath's Paranoid and Heaven and Hell. Arrrrrggggghhh There's too many!
    Battery Chicken
    White Rabbit was Jefferson Airplane, Jefferson Starship were the clusterf*ck 80's band that followed. That said, that is a rocking bassline.
    Black Dog by Led Zep
    I agree with you, but is the bassline any different from the guitar, though? I would say "Immigrant Song" just for sheer speed in the chorus.
    Queen - Dragon Attack Primus - Mary Has a Big Brown Beaver The Beatles - Paperback Writer How many bass players does it take to screw in a light bulb? None; the keyboard player can do it with his left hand. Q: Why can't many bass players get through the door? A:They either can't find the key or don't know when to come in. Q: How do you know when the stage is level? A: When the bass player is drooling out of both sides of his mouth. Q: What did the bassist do when he was told to turn on his amp? A: He caressed it softly and told it that he loved it. Q: What do you call someone who hangs around with musicians? A: A Bass Player. Son: "Daddy, I want to grow up and be a bass player." Father: "Son, you can't have it both ways. " Q: Why don't bass players ever catch a cold? A: Even a virus has some pride. Q: What did the bass player get on his IQ test? A: Drool. Q: What's the difference between a bass player and a mutual fund? A: One matures. Q: How do you make a bassist's eyes light up? A: Shine a flashlight in his ear. Q: Why are there bass solos? A: So the audience has something to talk over.
    A guitarist and a bassist were fighting like hell. The drummer comes in to make peace between them. D: "Why are you guys fighting like this?" B: "This modofacka right here detuned a string of my bass!" D: "So?" B: "He won't tell me which one..."
    The father/son one is great. Q: What do you do if you bass player is drowning? A: Throw him his amp. It's a little dark, but still my favorite.
    Q: How many guitarists does it take to screw in a lightbulb? A: One to screw it in and about a million to talk about how they could have done it better.
    HAHA GOODSHIT! Q: What do you call someone who hangs around with musicians? A: A Bass Player. Son: "Daddy, I want to grow up and be a bass player." Father: "Son, you can't have it both ways. "
    Primus's Les Claypool has a bunch of great ****ing basslines, Jerry Was A Race Car Driver, My Name is Mud, Tommy the Cat, DMV... Justin Chancellor of Tool-Forty-Six & 2, Schism (Paul D'Amour)-Hush... Rage Against the Machine (Tim Commerford) - Calm Like A Bomb, Bullet in the Head, Take the Power Back, Vietnow... Metallica- Pulling Teeth, Orion, For Whom the Bell Tolls (Cliff), My Friend of Misery (Jason) Alice In Chains-Would? Megadeth (Dave Ellefson)- Dawn Patrol, Peace Sells, Holy Wars.... Rush- Freewill, YYZ, Limelight RHCP- Around the world, Higher Ground Geezer (Black Sabbath, Ozzy)- NIB, No More Tears Smooth Criminal, Billie Jean Nirvana-Sliver, Lounge Act Beastie Boys-Sabotage, Gratitude Brocas Helm-Cry of the Banshee Another One Bites the Dust Rapper's Delight KoRn (Fieldy) - Freak On A Leash, Blind, Falling Away From Me Pink Floyd-Money Pantera-Floods Hideki Naganuma-Funky Dealer