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2013 Reader Favorites: #1: James Jamerson

Editor’s Note: At the end of each year, we tally up all the article and video views on No Treble to come up with a list of top 10 most popular bassists. This is entirely based on readership, not on opinions, polls or anything else. Just having some fun.

James Jamerson

This one should make a lot of readers happy.

Every year, plenty of people say the great James Jamerson should be #1, and we can never argue with that. In 2013, No Treble readers made it so, checking out the isolated bass videos we’ve shared along the way.

What likely tipped the scales this year was the response to Jack Stratton’s visual representation of Jamerson’s bass line on “For Once in My Life”. Jack had sent it to me along with this note: “[James] Jamerson belongs with Bach, Debussy and Mozart, and that includes graphical scores on Youtube.” Seeing that line visually made it even better, if that was possible.

While it didn’t count toward the total views we use to tally the Reader Favorites list, we also interviewed the late bassist’s son, James Jamerson, Jr. in February, 2013.

For Once in My Life: James Jamerson’s Bass Line Visualized

For Once in My Life: James Jamerson’s Bass Line Visualized

Vulfpeck’s Jack Stratton sent us this cool video he made saying, “[James] Jamerson belongs with Bach, Debussy and Mozart, and that includes graphical scores on Youtube.” We couldn’t agree more. Check this out…

James Jamerson’s Isolated Bass on “Ain’t That Peculiar” (with Drums)

James Jamerson’s Isolated Bass on “Ain’t That Peculiar” (with Drums)

We’re closed out our third “Isolated Bass Week” with the master. This is the audio track for Marvin Gaye’s “Ain’t That Peculiar”, with the bass and drums isolated from the original Motown master tape. (And some other instruments leaking through)…

James Jamerson: “Bernadette” Isolated Bass

James Jamerson: “Bernadette” Isolated Bass

Here’s a (mostly) isolated bass track from the 1967 Four Tops hit, “Bernadette”. There’s some disagreement about whether this is the bass on the actually released single, or if it is an out-take from the Motown vault…

The Four Tops: “Standing In The Shadows Of Love” – James Jamerson’s Isolated Bass (Isolated Bass Week)

The Four Tops: “Standing In The Shadows Of Love” – James Jamerson’s Isolated Bass (Isolated Bass Week)

We seem to like to wrap up our Isolated Bass Weeks with Mr. Jamerson. Here’s the isolated bass track for the 1966 Four Tops hit, “Standing In The Shadows Of Love”. ’Nuff said…

Isolated James Jamerson: I Heard It Through the Grapevine

Isolated James Jamerson: I Heard It Through the Grapevine

Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” wouldn’t have amounted to much without the iconic bass line we’re able to recognize without hearing anything else. To prove that, here’s the isolated bass, featuring the incredible bass line by James Jamerson. Of course, like all tracks from Motown in that era, there’s plenty of leakage…