Do you know what The Most Recognisable Bass Riff Ever is?
Your mind is probably spinning through all the songs you know and love. Maybe things like La Bamba, My Girl or Livin’ on a Prayer jump out at you. Maybe you’re more of a Stevie Wonder – I Wish kind of bass players. But, oddly enough, the Most Recognizable Bass Riff Ever is something most people know, but few can actually place.
While all of these bass lines are incredible and are definitely recognisable, none of these would be the MOST Recognisable bass riff ever. That honour falls to Fleetwood Mac – The Chain.
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The riff in question starts in bar 64 on the second page.
Did you know that the Chain is one of the only Fleetwood Mac songs to be credited to every member of the band. This was a full collaboration by the American-British band.
So what makes The Chain the most recognisable bass riffs ever? Simple – it’s just about everywhere.
Students who were asked to listen to all of the songs listed above all said that they knew the bass riff to The Chain. Many of them couldn’t name the song, or even knew where the song was from.
But they knew the riff. Not the whole song, just the ending riff. It is driving a fat end everything a bass riff should be. The song peaked on the charts at 36th place, and the album it is on “Rumours” is one of the band’s most loved albums.
But it wasn’t just the song’s performance on the charts that made it so recognisable. From 1978 until 1997 the ending bass line was official theme song that the BBC used for Formula One. This meant that the bass line was able to transcend the music charts. Additionally, the song is once again being used for Formula One, so it is once again in the ear and mind of the general public.
The bass line was played for almost 30years on an almost weekly basis for an international audience!
So while the bass line might not be the most technical, or the most popular to learn, its circumstances have definitely allowed it to become the Most Recognisable Bass Riff Ever.