In Memoriam: Jimmy Bain

Jimmy Bain in 1983Bassist Jimmy Bain, who laid down the low end for hard rock icons Rainbow and Dio, has passed away at the age of 68. A cause of death has not been announced.

The announcement was made by Def Leppard guitarist and Last in Line bandmate Vivian Campbell. “It’s with the heaviest of hearts that I must confirm the news of the passing of our dear friend and Last In Line band-mate, Jimmy Bain,” Campbell wrote on Facebook. “It was Jimmy who gave me my first big break in the music industry and for that I am forever indebted. Jimmy’s struggles with his demons were well documented through the years, but over the last 18 months he had finally won that battle and he was bright and lucid and motivated throughout the writing and recording of the new record. He leaves behind him a rich legacy of work from Rainbow, through Wild Horses, Dio, and finally, Last In Line. Jimmy was immensely proud of our new album and his input to it was immeasurable. He was a very kind and gentle and generous soul and our lives were greatly enriched for having known him. We will continue to celebrate his life through his music.”

Bain was born in Scotland in 1947 and got his start with regional bands before joining Street Noise. His big break came in 1975 when guitarist Ritchie Blackmore invited him to join Rainbow. He recorded Rising with the group as well as two live albums. He was fired in 1977 and quickly formed Wild Horses with Brian Robertson, Clive Edwards, and Neil Carter. In 1983, former Rainbow vocalist and soon to be metal legend Ronnie James Dio invited Bain to be part of the original lineup of Dio. The bassist was a key figure in the band and helped to co-write their biggest hits, “Rainbow in the Dark” and “Holy Diver”. Bain continued to perform in various bands and was on a metal cruise when he passed away.

Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Jimmy Bain.

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  1. MikeyOnBass

    Oh man, sorry to hear such news. Back in the day, it was all about getting that bright Bain pick tone. His work with Dio was rock solid. He will be missed!

  2. His playing on the DIO album “Holy Diver” is worth checking out! Great foundational rock bass player. RIP