Many people do not notice the bass in the songs. The majority of casual music listeners today (and in the past maybe),have no idea that bass guitar even exists. To be honest, before becoming a music enthusiast I did not even notice bass. I would only focus on the “main” part of every song (provided that we consider a certain part the main part!?) which could possibly be the lyrics, a little instrumental and / or a guitar solo, if it existed.

I was really curious on how people understand bass and bass lines in songs, so I decided to conduct a research. I brought 10 close people of mine (family and friends) together and I asked them several questions on bass and bass lines. Most of them didn’t know about bass.Bass

But, without further ado, I will give you the most iconic bass lines of all time now, and later I will tell you about the results

1. Another One Bites The Dust – Queen

John Deacon, Queen’s bassist did a great job there. In my opinion, Deacon should actually be considered one of the best bassist of all time, because he has influenced the history of music as well as many bassists all around the world.

It is true, he got all that fame because of the lead singer of the band, Freddie Mercury, however, he could stand out by himself.

2. Under Pressure – Queen

Another John Deacon one! Many of you may know it because of the 90s cover song Ice Ice Baby, by Vanilla Ice. To be fair, it is said that he didn’t ask for permission to use Deacon’s ad lib and that was something Queen members did not like at the time.

If you are one of those who know the story but refuse to listen to Ice Ice Baby, I suggest you give it a chance. It can be stuck in the brain very easily, believe me!

3. Billie Jean – Michael Jackson

The song that can still be heard in the radio stations. Accept it or not, Jackson has made history in the charts and sales, despite the crazy life he had outside work. Even though the Billie Jean bass line is repeated over and over again, it makes the listener vibe and dance in some cases!

4. My Generation – The WhoBass

One of the bands that introduced the crowd to a different version of rock n’ roll in the 70s, punk rock. Their style is amazing and I love how they can do a variety of styles when it comes to music. 

Apart from all that, My Generation, is considered a punk rock song and also a classic one!

5. Seven Nation Army – The White Stripes

This song’s bass line is instantly recognizable. If you ever hear this somewhere in public, you probably know where it is from. And if you don’t, you should listen to this song!

The White Stripes were a great band while they lasted, however they don’t have much discography.

6. Come Together – The Beatles

A classic song from a classic band (even though if you are not familiar with this, it is okay, because it is not that famous). I learned about this quite recently and, although I didn’t like it at first, I really enjoy listening to it today.

7. Money – Pink FloydBass

This song not only has a deep meaning but also an iconic instrumental, just like many Pink Floyd songs.

If you like Pink Floyd or any other psychedelic music band or artist, or if you just want a full rock n’ roll experience, you should give this song a chance. Rock n’ roll is not complete without the legendary discography of Pink Floyd.

8. Riders on the Storm – The Doors

Another incredible bass line on a great song. The song gives off jazz, retro vibes but also something mysterious.

You will surely love it, no matter what kind of music you listen to at the moment, this song can make you feel differently, this song is one of the reasons why so many people love The Doors.

9. Rio – Duran DuranBass

Yes, a mainstream pop song of the 80s actually made it in the list of top bass lines of all time! Not many people agree that bass can be distinctive when it comes to pop songs.

I disagree. I believe that pop artists show off their skills on bass in different ways, which may sometimes be better!

10. Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – Marvin Gaye ft. Tammi Terrel

Another great song of all time. It reminds me of the old days, when I listen to it, many childhood memories come to mind.

Marvin Gaye is a truly amazing artist and Tammi Terrel has an outstanding voice. I’m so glad these two has a song together.

What about my research?

You may be wondering about the results of my research at this point. So, I will write what people I know said about bass in general:

  • “I thought it only existed in orchestras”
  • “Do people actually use musical instruments other that guitar, piano and drums?”
  • “I know about bass but I never notice it in the songs I listen every day” (He listens to mainstream pop, by the way!)
  • “Why would they use this musical instrument, it makes no difference to the sound”
  • “A guitar solo is more impressive than bass lines”
  • “It looks like a second guitar in his hands”

Honestly, the opinions were too many, but the conclusion is that my friends had no idea what bass is! After I pointed out the bass lines in songs they like they said:

“Bass is nice after all!”

“Wow, I can’t imagine a song without a bass line now!”

If you agree, disagree or simply want to add something on what I previously mentioned, please leave a comment down below and I will get back at you, first chance that I get.

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Thank you!

4 Replies to “Popular Bass Lines Of All Time”

  1. HI Dominique. Thank you for very interesting article. I am big fan of rock music and I know all songs from your list (and I really love under pressure) but I had no idea that bass line is so important there. Its fascinating that you can listen song hundred times and still learn something new about it. Looking forward for more posts reveling rock secrets.

  2. Hi. I was curious to see what you had included in your list. I agree with many of your selections. But I guess like your family and friends I would be hard-pressed to come up with others that I thought you have missed. As you say, most of us tend not to pay attention to the bass unless it is hitting us in the face. I am reminded of something Suzie Quatro, a bass player from the 1970s said when asked why she liked the bass so much – I will try to render this in PG13 acceptable format. She said – Lead guitar get’s you in the head, drums get you in the backside, but bass gets you between the legs. And there you have it! Best regards, Andy

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