What's your favorite synth bass line?

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by pauljacksonfan, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. pauljacksonfan


    Jun 14, 2005
    Hi guys. I just recently got myself a Novation Bass-Station. For those of you who don't know already this is an analogue synthesizer keyboard that's more or less designed for replicating the bass sounds from an old mini moog and the other classic synth bass sounds. So because of that I'm wondering if you've got any tips for cool lines. I'm currently just getting my keyboard chops together so I'm gonna need some inspiration.

    My all time favorites are probably:

    Chaka Khan's "We can work it out" with the awesome Greg Phillinganes laying it down
    Stevie Wonders lines on songs like "Boogie On Reggae Woman" and "Too High" are timeless. And of course you can't forget about the mother of it all: Herbie Hancock's "Chameleon".
    Oh. And "Eye to eye" by Chaka is awesome as well.

    It would be nice if you could add something to my list.
  2. EmmSee


    May 23, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Don't forget all of Bernie Worrell's work with Parliament/Funkadelic! ... his most famous line, of course, is from "Flashlight."
  3. clayton


    Jun 26, 2005
    Woudl the Doors basslines clasify as synth bass?? If so, check them out, there are some pretty groovy.
  4. two jump straight into my head

    the Eurythmics --"Sweet Dreams"
    the Gap Band --"You Dropped the Bomb on Me"

    What Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart did on that first Eurythmics album was nothing short of incredible!
  5. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    ANother vote for "Boogie On Reggae Woman," but I am also a big fan of the UK soul/funk group Loose Ends. They had great keyboard bass jams like "Hanging on a String," "Stay A Little While Child," "Slow Down," and a great DX7 (digital basslike synth) sounding jam called "Mr. Bachelor." The last big hit with keyboard bass they had was "Don't Be a Fool" in 1991. They also used a lot a great bass guitar too. Get there Best Of CD on EMI.
  6. pauljacksonfan


    Jun 14, 2005
    How could I forget the man himself. Flashlight's probably my alltime favorite. Thanks.

    As for the Doors, I tend to make a distinction between synth bass and organ bass since I'm never going to get my synth to sound like an organ anyway. For chops however, I have a feeling they're awesome.

    And the others sound cool as well.

    Keep 'em coming
  7. pauljacksonfan


    Jun 14, 2005
    Cool. I'll give them a listen.
  8. Lo end PUNCH

    Lo end PUNCH

    Jan 28, 2005
    Shalamar-My Girl Loves Me
    Whispers-Rock Steady
    Price-Soft & Wet
    Paliament-Funkentelechy(were'd you get that funk from?)
    The Dogg Pound-Lets Play House
    The System-anything they have ever made
    Kraftwerk-The Man-Machine
    Saga-most of their stuff
    Dazz Band-To The Roof
    George Clinton-Atomic Dog
  9. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    That was a Fender piano bass. ;)
    ...exact same range as the Fender bass.

    Glad to see someone mentioned David Frank of The System...some of his lines were contrapuntal(like 2 different basslines happenin' at once; a bitch to cover on EB, trust me).

    Greg Phillinganes (you already mentioned the classic "We Can Work It Out").
    'Hawk' Wolinski of Rufus
    Rod Temperton of Heatwave(if he didn't play 'em, he composed them).
    Michael Omartian...like "Yah Mo B There" from James Ingram's debut, This Is My Night. Sounds like Phillinganes, pretty sure it's Omartian.

    ...and check out Madonna's "Into The Groove" & maybe even "Like A Prayer".
  10. Franklin229

    Franklin229 Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    Northeast USA
    Frankie Goes to Hollywood-Relax-live
  11. matrok


    Jan 10, 2005
    Ferndale, Michigan
    I played a lot of synth bass in the 80's, three of my favorites were:

    Breakout-Swingout Sister
    Cruel Summer- Bananarama
    Into The Groove- Madonna
  12. Jamolah


    Apr 28, 2005
    UK, North East
    Can't fault any of the suggestions made so far. Bernie Worrel is certainly the daddy of funk synth-bass.

    A classic synth line I love is 'Big Time' by Peter Gabriel.

    p.s. I'm not completely sure, but I didn't think there was any synth-bass on 'Like A Prayer', I thought it was all Guy Pratt.
  13. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    ...sounded like a synth to me(it's been a long while, though).
  14. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I used to play a Moog Rogue in a band back in the 1980's that covered lots of Prince and prince related material. I used to like "I Would Die for 4 U," I loved "Erotic City" both by Prince of course.
  15. zombywoof5050


    Dec 20, 2001
    There's this one little synth bass line in "Sofa #1" (Zappa) that's only about 10 notes, but it's always really grabbed me.
  16. DemoEtc


    Aug 18, 2004
    Joe Jackson - Steppin' Out (I had to play that once on an ARP Odyssey - talk about staring at the keys)
    Human League - Don't You Want Me?
    Most of the Missing Persons stuff - not fancy bass work, but driving with the drums. Words, Mental Hopscotch.
  17. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Joe Zawinul's bass line at the beginning of Birdland while Jaco plays those crazy harmonics.
  18. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    99 luftballoons.

    someone correct me if i am factually wrong.
  19. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I always liked the bass line and sound of "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys - nothing ever since, but that line was great!!