In your opinion, what are the ten most iconic bass guitars in rock history?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by TheOriginalName, May 28, 2018.

  1. TheOriginalName


    May 28, 2018
    Any honorable mentions or bonuses are welcome!
  2. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Rickenbacker 4001
    Jazz Bass
    Steinberger L2
    Alembic Series 1
    Ampeg AMB1
    Gibson EB-3
    Kubicki X-Factor
    blacktocomm, uusak, PillO and 10 others like this.
  3. Have you ever heard of the Stingray?
  4. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Well..... I hadda pick ten! By all means, weigh in!:D
    alesreaper9, Royal Jelly and JaseyT like this.
  5. I'm not sure any bass except the Fender Precision is truly "iconic." That's an awfully big word for this sort of thing. And I say that as someone who owns only one Precision and doesn't consider it his #1. The Precision isn't necessarily better than other basses, but it's the one that established the template that many others are built on, including the Jazz (basically an offset-waist Precision with two pickups and a different look to the pickguard and control layout) and Leo Fender's later designs for MusicMan and G+L.

    Fundamentally different designs have generally not been as popular or influential. The violin-shaped bass guitar started with the Gibson EB in the '50s, but the main reason they're still around (though not from Gibson) is Paul McCartney's use of the Hofner 500. Steinbergers were popular for a while in the '80s when everything had to look high-tech, but you don't see that many people with little square-bodied headless basses anymore. Go into a guitar store today and most of what you'll see in the bass section is variations on the Precision: solid-body guitar-shaped double-cut basses, 34" scale give or take an inch or so, often with all the tuners on the top of the headstock (unless there are more than four of them), usually with the pickups in about the same positions as a Precision or Jazz (aside from Gibsons and Rickenbackers).
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  6. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Bootlegger guitars : S.I.T. Strings Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Florida USA
    Jamersons p bass
    McCartney’s hofner
    Jacos jazz bass
    Stanley’s Brown Alembic
    Chris Squires Ric
    Bootsys star bass
    Entwistles Fenderbird

    I don’t know...
  7. consectaneus


    Sep 23, 2016
    This is what I thought the OP was looking for??
    ThudThudThud, wmmj, dan1952 and 5 others like this.
  8. TheOriginalName


    May 28, 2018

    Yeah, just your opinion :)
  9. BassplayinBob


    Jan 8, 2016
    It really begins and ends with P bass.
  10. We all know about these basses, but for a true icon, something even non-bass players might at least recognise, I vote Thunderbird.

    A top ten list is probably overkill :)
    Leiria likes this.
  11. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    Rick 4001
    T Bird
    Hofner Beetle bass
    Spector NS2
    Steinberger L2
    Gibson EB0
    blacktocomm, nateh415, Rezdog and 7 others like this.
  12. Qlanq


    Jul 9, 2007
    Steinberger Q4
    T Bird
    Flying V
    Violin Bass
    Alembic Series 1
    Ibanez Blazer
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  13. REV

    REV Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    There are 10?
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  14. phillipkregg

    phillipkregg Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2010
    Nashville, TN
    Jaco's bass is certainly iconic, but not exactly iconic in terms of rock music.

    Now Geddy's black and maple jazz definitely fits the bill.
  15. phillipkregg

    phillipkregg Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2010
    Nashville, TN
    In terms of rock, I'd also throw in Duff McKagan's black and white Fender PJ. As soon as you see that bass and the stringy blonde hair you know you're about to see a rock show.

    FishDub, wmmj, Felken and 5 others like this.
  16. BassFishingInAmerica


    Jul 24, 2014
    Amazes me how the Tbird is always up there with the Fenders and Rics. And yet, in comparison, it gets so much less discussion.
    RaggaDruida and BlueAliceOasis like this.
  17. JakobT


    Jan 9, 2014
    Oslo, Norway
    To me, an iconic bass would be one that has been played by one or more equally iconic performers, and with a form factor that’s instantly recognized by the public, even if they couldn’t tell you what it was. I think that there are only six:

    Fender Precision
    Fender Jazz
    Höfner Violin bass
    Rickenbacker 4001
    Musicman StingRay
    Gibson Thunderbird
  18. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    John Paul Jones's Jazz will however.

    Iconic for rock music, no one who is non-musician will know who Stanley Clarke is. I wager tons and tons of musician dont know who he is either.
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  19. Max Blasto

    Max Blasto

    Nov 29, 2010
    San Diego
    Yeah, if “iconic” is meant to mean “most boring thing on the planet.”
  20. BassplayinBob


    Jan 8, 2016
    Hahaha. :)