Lately I have become fascinated at how musically expressive bass guitars have become. Perhaps they have always been this way and I just didn’t notice.
All my life it seemed to me that, with only a few exceptions, bass guitars were just there to fill in the low end in a song and to perhaps augment the beat of the song.
But lately, in my extensive YouTube travels, I have come across some bass playing that just defies description. The players of these bass solos are every bit as virtuosic as a lead guitar or keyboard players.
So, without further ado, here are some of my favorite bass solos I’ve stumbled across. I’ve started the clip at the beginning of the bass solo, but I encourage you to rewind the video to the beginning and enjoy the entire piece.
#5: Abraham Laboriel, “The Bass Walk”
Mr. Laboriel is one of the greatest bass players that there has ever been. You don’t have to take my word for it, Sir Paul McCartney said so.
Better yet, just give him a listen and decide for yourself.
#4: Christian McBride, “It’s On”, (with the George Duke Trio)
Here’s a good example of making an instrument sing. The sounds coming out of the bass almost seem like lyrics. It’s as if, if you listen hard enough, you can hear words.
#3: Marcus Miller, “Run For Cover”, (with the David Sanborn Band)
This is the most musical of the bass solos. It is very sensual and cool. Very nice!
#2: André Berry: “Silverlining”, (with the Dave Koz Band)
This is a nearly two-minute-long funk-fest. I did not even know this kind of playing was even possible on a bass guitar!
I encourage you to listen to the entire two minutes of it, for it starts slowly and builds into a virtual towering inferno of blazing funkadelic fusion!
#1: Lamar Jones: “Back in the Day & So Good”, (with Brian Culbertson)
Regular readers of my blog know that I have shared this particular piece before, but then I was gushing about the entire video from start to finish. This time I am zeroing in on Lamar Jones’ virtuoso, absolutely breathtaking bass solo.
You know a musician is really good when other musicians are just standing there watching him in awe!
And there you have it!
I hope you enjoyed listening to them as much as I did.