Which decade had the best basslines????

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by Joe Nerve, Aug 2, 2003.

  1. 60s

    1 vote(s)
  2. 70s

    29 vote(s)
  3. 80s

    6 vote(s)
  4. 90s

    4 vote(s)
  5. 2000s

    0 vote(s)
  1. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    I was listening to one of my seventies tapes again in the car today, and I gotta say - I just LOVE almost all of the basslines they played in pop music back then. The cheesiest songs have some really great bass happening - the defranco family - heartbeat - GREAT STUFF!!!! - stories - brother louie - MORE GREAT STUFF!!!! those r just 2 songs that popped out at me on this tape, i never noticed how great the basslines were before. anyhow - what decade do you think had the best basslines? examples please... i'd like to keep it to popular music too, thanks.
  2. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    I agree, 70s had some kicking basslines, I blame disco:p
  3. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    2000s. Drum n'bass stuff knocks me out.
  4. 80s, if not only for Iron Maiden and early Metallica.

    Hair metal and new wave :bassist:
  5. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I agree.
    I will often listen to the Oldies' station when not playing a disc in the car.
    On a whole, '60s & '70s Pop, regardless of the 'cheeze factor, had some nice playing in the rhythm section. I'm talking Dawn("Candida", "Knock Three Times"), Looking Glass("Brandy"), The Partridge Family, etc.
    Check out tunes like "The Name Game", "Backfield In Motion", "Chick-A-Boom", "Grazing In The Grass", etc for some nice R&B lines.
  6. i voted 70's because of all the 70's rock bands. cream, sabbath, maiden, zepplin,etc.
    also the bass is more prominent in the mix back then
  7. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    Well, Cream broke up in early 1967 (I think) and Maiden wasn't really prominant in the 7Os, but I hear ya. Personally, I think some of the most inventive bass lines happened in the 60s.
  8. redneck2wild


    Nov 27, 2002
    Memphis, TN
    It would have to be the 70's. Real musicians playing moving lines. Many of the songs had few repeats - e.g. 2nd verse would have different fills/notes than the 1st verse.

    The early 80's was dominated by synth/keyboard bass. The late 80's had way too many songs with singe note eighths. The 90's brought in portions of songs duplicated digitally.
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    60's pop, Beatles and Motown had some of the best basslines, especially as far as consistency go. So I voted 60's.

    Yeah, there is great stuff from the other decades, but the crap/coolstuff ratio is much higher.
  10. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    IMO, they all just fit the music that was appropriate for the times and what the bass technology at the time would allow the player to execute the sound in their head.

    Fr'instance - the simplistic, overdriven, basslines of late 70's punk reflected the "anti-music establishment anarchy" of the day and nobody had an amp that could handle a B string decently

    - the artsy, processed-sounding, basslines of the 80's reflected the affluence of the 80's. Studio tech could now produce other-worldly sounds and bassists were getting into exotic wood-boutique and techie basses like Ken Smiths and Steinbergers.

    Post 2000 - Man, I don't know. There's all this detuning bass pulse that I can't really call "basslines." It just seems like hammering on the B string for an entire song to complement the detuned, distorted, guitarist with the Paul Reed Smith.
  11. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    There were B strings on electric basses in the 70s? when was the first 5 string made?(mass produced)
  12. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    I think you misunderstood Robot - No amp in the 70's was made to produce a B string's Hz's. No one, in the "mainstream", was even thinking about a B string, AFAIK.

    The first "real" 6-string I know of appeared in `75 from Carl Thompson after Anthony Jackson requested one. 5'er's and 6'er's really appeared en masse in the 80's AFAIK.

    The amp market still has a lot of challenges today with the B string, IMO, outside of Accugroove or PA subs.
  13. When you say drum n'bass, what kind of music or artists are you referring to? When I hear that term, I tend to think of jungle because I thought the two were synonymous. (I could be wrong, of course.) But the jungle I've heard is almost all electronic, with the execption of some Squarepusher and a few other artists that might incorporate a little bit of it in their repetoire. Are we talking about a whole different kind of music here, or are there bands that strictly play jungle with live instruments and real bass?
  14. I would say the 70's, although I don't remember much of it. But it seems like every mainstream genre, as in radio-friendly stuff, had a good, solid bassline. As far as rock went, you had bands like Zeppelin. You had guys like Bootsy, Larry Graham, and Louis Johnson doing their thing. And most of the pop hits back then had decent basslines too.
  15. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    While I think the 80s definitly had the best and catchiest pop songs, the 70s had the best basslines, IMO. It was still okay back then for popular bands to have 7+ minute songs (which allowed for far more exploration that root-five stuff), and even the pop songs were bass-dominated.
  16. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    70's, hands down. I'm really pleasantly surprised that so many others feel this way too. There's some darn cheesy stuff from that era, but the basslines -- oh, the basslines...

    Motown (at least in an iconic way) is to be credited for setting a standard for bass in the sixties, but man -- it seems to me like the music world spent the 70's trying to live up to that standard... and how sweet it was.

  17. BaroqueBass


    Jul 8, 2000
    Salem, OR
    Dancing Queen has one of the sickest basslines ever.
  18. gfab333


    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    It's gotta be the 1970s, particularly the period 1975 to 1979!

    Ah, the 1980s, remember all those keyboard synth lines in many of the pop tunes? That might have been the worst period for us true bassplayers.:D
  19. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    The '70's handsdown! Even some of the Disco basslines were dope! Bernard Edwards anyone?
  20. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    IMO it depends on the genre of music. There were smokin basslines in a couple of era's of music IMO.

    I hate 70's music for the most part, but they did have some of the best bass lines going. I also think the the 60's motown had some of the best bass lines around to rival the 70's, The 80's R&B from Luthar Vandros, etc also had many a great line to them as well.