Chris Squire, the co-founder and longtime bassist of prog rock icons Yes and the only member of the group to feature on every studio album, has passed away just over a month after revealing that he was suffering from a rare form of leukemia. Squire was 67. Current Yes keyboardist Geoff Downes first tweeted the news, “Utterly devastated beyond words to have to report the sad news of the passing of my dear friend, bandmate and inspiration Chris Squire.
That excerpt is taken from this Rolling Stone article.
The music world has lost, in my opinion, one of its top 10 bassists. I can’t put them in numerical order because they slide around based upon my mood, so I’ll just list them in alphabetical order.
- Stanley Clarke
- John Entwhistle
- Geddy Lee
- Tony Levin
- Paul McCartney
- John Myung
- Billy Sheehan
- Chris Squire
- Victor Wooten
I’m sure people will look at this list and say, “What about [insert name here]? You’re insane! There’s no way [pick name from my list] should be on there and not [insert name not on the list].” Subjectivity at its finest. I digress.
While my parents had a few Yes albums, it wasn’t really until I became friends with Scott MacDiarmid (of Dedicated Light) that I developed a greater appreciation for Chris Squire’s work (thanks Scott). I think the difference between good and great bass players is the presence of an expressive voice. A bass in the hands of a great player can speak to you. It has emotion. Not following me?
Here’s an example:
Here’s another where it’s just Chris’ bass: