What's your DREAM bass line to learn?


Anybody have a bass line that maybe seems unattainable at the moment, but that you really really want to be able to play some day?

I’m happy to say my list of things that seem “unattainable” shrinks by the year and has gotten relatively small, but I am still totally blown away and mystified by what Jaco plays on the tune Crisis:

I don’t know if I’ll ever actually learn it, but sure is humbling to listen to every time.


I stopped 11 seconds in. There is no way I’ll be that quick. I don’t think I could be that fast in my dreams! :open_mouth:


You never know!


That’s insane. Is there a live performance of Jaco playing that? Curious to see how fast his fingers are moving!


Not that I can find, that would be cool to see! Anyone else know of one?


I am not a Jazz fan but WOW! He takes it to a whole new level! I would just like to get my basics down. Playing like that is just a dream.


Ok. So - a bit of a different take. I was working on this tune for a real fun gig here at home, and this bassline blew me away. It is musically perfect. It has the little lick/fill at the beginning - and the way there’s that hitch-stutter, and the way that it locks with the drums… the walks up, the walks down - what octave it’s played in…

It’s no Jaco, or Victor. Those guys are like 12 course, gourmet meals. It’s unbelievable. It’s incredible… and few can attain the genius. This bassline is like an absolutely perfectly cooked meal by your grandmother. It is simple, but to make something simple so perfect - so groovy - so free of any non-ideal notes… it is - to me - magical and wonderful.

So. This was a bassline I didn’t know about, and wouldn’t have cared about if it came on the radio… but because it had to be played for a gig, I worked on it, and fell in love… and it was dreamy to learn.

Still count?


Couldn’t find a live version of Crisis either :cry: There’s a couple of dudes who’ve done covers of it. Mesmerising…

It reminds me of a movie soundtrack but I can for the life of me place it.


That’s a nice hitch-stutter they’ve got there! I can see how this tune grew on you. :slight_smile:

Wow, trippy! Wonder what octave he’s using, sounds like a Boss OC-2, I wonder if Jaco was using one?


He is a machine!

My dream bass line would be any of the bass lines in the course at the normal speed played by the bands! I’m only halfway through the course, but all these seem unattainable, or maybe more accurately, low chance of attainment. As long as there is a thread of hope…I persist.

In my daydreams I am playing the bass line of one of my favorite songs by The Talking Heads, Born Under Punches…the version from the Stop Making Sense tour

I was surprised Tina Weymouth was not on the list of great bassists in your booklet. I love her sound. Do you?


GREAT shout out. Archetypal tone! Great lines, great execution. Very good call. I look to Gang of 4 and The Clash for more great bass lines and sounds from this era / sound world.


Yes, I do! There’s probably more great players missing from that list than are on it, the inevitable difficulty of making lists like that, as we were just talking about in the Rolling Stone Top 10 List thread.


Sir Duke by Stevie Wonder, hopefully within the realms of possibility with LOTS of practice!

Love this guy’s cover on the U-Bass: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CfffmBWCry0


The way into this bassline is to practice the major pentatonic scale non-stop. If those patterns and forms feel good, the bass line just appears under your fingers. It’s like the Wax-on, Wax-off moment of Karate Kid (the REAL one). You’ll be all sore and tired from practicing your major pentatonic scale, and you’ll complain “why am I just playing this dumb scale in the key of B all over my neck over and over again?”
And then Mr. Miagi will sing Sir Duke, and your fingers will just PLAY IT.



Haha, great analogy. Whatever you do though, don’t sweep the leg


My attainable, but out of my current range is U2’s New Year’s Day.
The unattainable is Hysteria by Muse:

Song actually starts about 1 minute in.


I love that bass line! Really clever use of open strings, and such a cool tone too.

This may not help if the tune is above your level at the moment, but I do have an old Youtube video where I break the bass line down -


A great analogy indeed!

Thanks so much for the advice, i’ll be sure to give that approach a go and let you know how I get on!


Thanks for the links. Great playing and awesome job on the tone!


That’s (Sir Duke) been on my “must do” list for so long. I keep starting but then have to get back to band rehearsals, recording etc. Top bassline! Great advice on the scale too!