Top 10 Basslines Of All Time

date: 09/07/2012 category: wtf?
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Top 10 Basslines Of All Time
Guitarists get all the girls, drummers get all the jokes, and singers get all the interviews. But bassists are, as all UG readers know, the backbone to any rock track. On Wednesday we asked you to nominate and vote for your favorites baselines ever. Hundreds of you took part, and the result is a definitive list of awesome riffs that only UG readers could pull off. So who were the winners, and do you agree with the results? Read on to find out.

10. Green Day "Longview"

Bassist Mike Dirnt vaguely recalls writing this riff while on acid: "I was frying on acid so hard. I was laying up against the wall with my bass lying on my lap. It just came to me. I said, 'Billie, check this out. Isn't this the wackiest thing you've ever heard?' Later, it took me a long time to be able to play it, but it made sense when I was on drugs."

9. Led Zeppelin "Dazed And Confused"

The great Zeppelin didn't originally write this song - it was first penned by singer-songwriter Jake Holmes. Still, Jimmy Page tweaked it just enough to make it his own for John Paul Jones to lay down this monster of a bassline.

8. Rush "YYZ"

This instrumental track has been one of Rush's most popular live pieces since its inception in 1981. Based on Morse code, the guitar and bass play the 'short dash' with a root note of C, and uses an F# for the Morse code 'dots'. It's the kind of genius that only a group of prog legends like Rush could conceive.

7. Red Hot Chili Peppers "Around The World"

Flea was actually the last member of the band to put his part to the song, but it became one of the coolest intros ever written. It's what the word 'party' sounds like if you pitch it down a few octaves.

6. Alice In Chains "Would?"

Bassist Mike Starr tragically died of a drug overdose in 2011, but with a rattling bass hook like this he'll always be remembered.

5. Metallica "For Whom The Bell Tolls"

Cliff Burton, yet another brilliant bassist who was taken before his time. People used to mistake this opening sound for a guitar, but instead it was Burton's bass running though distortion and a wah-pedal. He actually wrote the riff before joining Metallica, and first aired it during a 12-minute jam at a battle of the bands competition in 1979.

4. Black Sabbath "N.I.B."

It seems UG readers love a bit of wah on bass! This time it's from Geezer Butler, who recorded his part in one legendary take. Geezer says he named the song after drummer Bill Ward's beard, which makes so little sense that some Americans decided to rename it "Naivety In Black".

3. Queen "Another One Bites The Dust"

Bassist John Deacon was perhaps the most mild-mannered member of Queen, but he was a creative powerhouse. He wrote some of the best-selling Queen singles, including this one which shifted over 7 million copies.

2. Megadeth "Peace Sells..."

It's easy to let frontman Dave Mustaine and his controversial comments overshadow the awesomeness of Megadeth. Thanks to bassist Dave Ellefson, this song was pretty close to winning our award for 'best baseline ever' and missed out by only four votes.

1. Pink Floyd "Money"

Who would have guessed! All of us, obviously. Never has a 7/8 riff sounded so effortless and groovy. It could have sounded quite different - Roger Waters originally demoed this song in G-sharp minor, but it was eventually recorded in B minor. Either way, the result was one of the all-time great basslines, and today it's your winner. Enjoy!
That's your official top 10 baselines of all time. Do you feel that anyone missed the cut? Which riffs would you add, and where? Let us know in the comments.
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