In Memoriam: Bassists We Lost in 2010

As the year draws to its close, we stop to remember the great bassists who passed away in 2010. The bass community lost heroes from every genre, from jazz to funk to punk and everything in between. Here’s our salute to the fallen low-enders.

Robert Wilson

Robert Wilson, bassist for the Gap Band. Wilson’s funky playing impacted many bassists to come, including Gospel legend Andrew Gouche. “He was a legend, Icon, and unsung Hero on bass, So many of you bassists don’t even realize that a lot of what YOU do came from HIM!” Gouche said.

Kenny Edwards

Kenny Edwards, session bassist best known for his work as Linda Ronstadt’s sideman.

Walter Payton

Walter Payton, renowned New Orleans bassist and educator. The upright player had a longtime association with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, but also played on such hits as Aaron Neville’s “Tell It Like It Is” and Lee Dorsey’s “Working in a Coal Mine.”

Jim Clench

Jim Clench, bassist for April Wine and Bachman Turner Overdrive. Clench filled Bachman’s role in BTO from ’77 to ’79, and later rejoined April Wine from 1992-2006.

Andy Hummel

Andy Hummel, bassist for ‘70s power pop group Big Star. The band played greatly influenced later groups like R.E.M., the Replacements, and the Posies.

Pete Quaife

Pete Quaife, founding member of the Kinks. Quaife and the Kinks were part of the British Invasion, with hits including “You Really Got Me,” and “All Day and All of the Night.”

Marvin Isley

Marvin Isley, bassist for the Isley Brothers. Marvin joined his brothers in their band once he was old enough, and helped sculpt their new sound with his playing on hits like “That Lady.”

Calvin ‘Fuzz” Jones

Calvin ‘Fuzz” Jones, Chicago blues bassist. Jones, though not widely known, played with almost every big blues guitarist, including Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Elmore James, and Little Walter.

Peter Steele

Peter Steele, bassist and frontman of Type O Negative. The controversial bass player’s macabre persona made him a hit with heavy music lovers.

John Ciambotti

John Ciambotti, bassist for Clover. Ciambotti and Clover backed Elvis Costello on his debut album in addition to having a solid West Coast following.

Geoff Lloyd

Geoff Lloyd, bassist and co-founder of the Matthew Good Band. After the MGB, Lloyd formed his own band, the Slipjacks.

Chris Feinstein

Chris Feinstein, bassist for Ryan Adams and the Cardinals. Chris was also prominent in the New York City scene.

T-Bone Wolk

T-Bone Wolk, session bassist best known for his work with Hall and Oates, Elvis Costello, and Billy Joel.

Harold Cowart

Harold Cowart, bassist for John Fred and his Playboy Band. He was also a successful session player, working with many pop stars in the ’70s and ’80s.

Sean Stewart

Sean Stewart, bassist for the Australian alt-rock band HTRK. The trio’s work was held down with Stewart’s meditative bass lines.

Paul Gray

Paul Gray, bassist and founding member of Slipknot. Gray was also one of the main songwriters for the band that built their own brand of metal.

Derf Scratch

Derf Scratch, founding member and the original bassist for the L.A. punk band Fear. Scratch had a big impact on the punk genre, not to mention the fact that Mike Watt bought his first bass from him.

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  1. Another loss to the bass world. Ryan “Ace” McNeely died a few days short of his 31st birthday in Dallas, TX in late June. Ace was a well known and loved figure in the Dallas music scene. Ace was a multi- instrumentalist, but found regular work playing bass with local, and regional bands. Most recently he held down the low end for the Grant Jones Band, and worked as the house engineer for City Tavern. Ryan was extremely passionate about music, and will be missed by many.