Famous songs with obvious bass mistakes

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by fretlessman71, Jun 19, 2020.

  1. fretlessman71

    fretlessman71 Still beats havin' a job Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2005
    FoCo, NoCo
    What are "your favorite mistakes"? Places in songs where the bassist hit a wrong note, and the producer just decided to leave it?

    The two I can think of are:

    Steely Dan, Do It Again: first note of 2nd chorus

    Steppenwolf, Born To Be Wild: first note of final "B" section
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  2. fretlessman71

    fretlessman71 Still beats havin' a job Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2005
    FoCo, NoCo
    Another semi-obvious one is by The Meters, on the song People Say, halfway through the unison lick in the bridge.
  3. Guitalia


    Jun 7, 2008
    Baltimore, MD
    Ray Davies of the Kinks has said that he always liked the original recording of You Really Got Me for the way the bassist, Pete Quaife, accidentally let the open A string ring (at 0:05 and various other times in the song):
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  4. Guitalia


    Jun 7, 2008
    Baltimore, MD
    I'm Not Like Everybody Else. Not a particularly famous song, but it was a Kinks single. For best results, listen to it once to get the structure, and then listen again for the bass mistakes.

    It's obvious that the bass player had heard only one or two (at most) hurried play-throughs before they did the take, since he's clearly learning the song as it's being recorded.

    Sounds as if he started to get comfortable toward the end. Either that, or he gave up and just started throwing in glisses to get through the take. He probably assumed that there'd be another take, but Shel Talmy, the producer, liked to get in and out of the studio fast. And anyway, who listens to the bass?

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  5. Never heard that song before but I really liked it. Totally off topic I know but I think I might need to check them out. Always "new" music to discover :) Thank you
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  6. Egm93


    Oct 5, 2018
    Don’t know if counts as a mistake, but on “Living loving maid (she’s just a woman)” by Led Zeppelin John Paul Jones misses the first four notes of the riff. Killer playing nonetheless!

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  7. underwhelmist


    Nov 16, 2018
    Every day at about 12:50am the Shipping forecast gets broadcast on Radio 4 in the UK, and it's always preceded by a tune called Sailing By. There's one bit where the bass (DB I think) hit's a wrong'un and then sits out for a bit while he works out where he is. It's about 1:55 in this clip. Maybe it's not a particularly famous tune, but it gets played every single day without fail so it must be one of the most played mistakes.

  8. Guitalia


    Jun 7, 2008
    Baltimore, MD
    Led Zeppelin's I Can't Quit You Baby, on the first album. Listen to the end of the guitar solo, starting at 3:15 or so, to get oriented.

    It's hard to tell who screwed up. Page exits the solo early and the tune turns to chaos for a full measure, but I think he might have been thrown by JPJ hitting the tonic instead of the expected IV note during the turnaround. Luckily for Page and JPJ, Bonham wasn't shy about kicking them back into line.

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  9. garp


    Feb 7, 2009
    Connecticut USA
    Don't know that it's a "mistake" in the same manner as previously-cited examples, but it's just a tad unusual for this band and this producer.

    This is the final track off of their final studio album, recorded in 1983, and the final bass note at about 04:27 is sort of a story in and of itself. At the time of the recording session at George Martin's AIR Studios in Montserrat, the band members were literally at each other's throats, with Hugh Padgham having to frequently intervene to prevent fistfights. IMHO, this last note – slightly overdriven and slightly out of tune/intonation – effectively states "We're done here" and serves as a perfect coda to their catalog.

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  10. jdthebassman

    jdthebassman play to live live to play Supporting Member

    fire jimi Hendrix near the end of the song noel comes in with the opening riff while the song is vamping out
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  11. ElectroVibe


    Mar 2, 2013
    There is one on the Blonde on Blonde album by Bob Dylan. I can't remember which one but it seemed like one of the more famous songs. Not that interesting really, but just so glaringly obvious. It must have been a big deal to edit music in Nashville in the mid 60's.
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  12. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Gold Supporting Member

    :D yeah: no way to 'razor blade' one track on analog multitrack. ;)
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  13. ElectroVibe


    Mar 2, 2013
    Yes. And it seemed like this song was a little longer than usual. The album had some pretty long ones but this one was around 7 minutes. "Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again". I think it was this song.
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  14. There's a huge one on Whisky in the Jar by Thin Lizzy....they forgot to hit the record button :)
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  15. Michedelic

    Michedelic MId-Century Modern

    David Bowie’s “Gene Genie”; the tune pretty much hangs on the Yardbirds’ interpretation of Bo Diddley’s “I’m A Man” riff, which is in E. It shifts to B for the chorus, but here, at approximately :47, Trevor Boulder flubs the change, you hear Bowie mutter “get back on it”...

    ...and then gets a bit sloppy starting at 3:12, but it doesn’t really matter as it’s a hot take overall. That tune seemed to be cursed for them; here Boulder blows the change again, and Mick Ronson breaks a string during the climactic second solo...
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  16. Michedelic

    Michedelic MId-Century Modern

    Their whole career is full of ‘deep cut’ gems that actually get covered just as much, if not more, than the usual suspect radio hits. Plus, they managed a number of comebacks. This track is one of their most beloved...
  17. RayWithFlats


    Mar 22, 2020
    on the 1
    I went to the launch event for Woody Woodmansey’s autobiography, he did a Q&A session at the end and talked through the writing/recording process. Apparently there was a really quick turnaround in the studio, they only ran through once or twice before tracking. That might only be the second or third time Trevor has heard the song!
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  18. zombywoof5050


    Dec 20, 2001
    On "What Is And What Should Never Be", JPJ flubs the line at the very beginning of the verse after the guitar solo (at 2:42).
  19. SunByrne

    SunByrne trained monkey Supporting Member

    Aug 29, 2019
    Pearland, TX
    I love this song, and more importantly, I love playing this song. I'm not sure this is actually a mistake, though--I think Noel was screwing around on purpose and they just left it in.
  20. fretlessman71

    fretlessman71 Still beats havin' a job Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2005
    FoCo, NoCo
    If you listen closely, you can hear him start to go back to the hook (the intro lick), then change his mind and continue the solo vamp out. So it's not a "flub" so much as it is an artifact of indecision.