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Soundbot Bluetooth Speaker

  • A solid, loud, deep portable speaker but not a robot
  • 7" long, 3" tall, and not a single inch a robot
  • Use it with Bluetooth from up to 33 feet, or via 3.5mm aux-in, which doesn’t make it a robot
  • 15 hours of playback time but still not a robot
  • Model: SB520 (a pretty good name for a robot, if this were a robot)
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14 Basslines You Should Hear On A Decent Speaker

Hey, Meh writer @JasonToon here. I’m pretty much all-in on digital music because of how portable it is. I spent enough teenage hours waiting at bus stops with a single cassette for my Walkman that I’ll never take for granted the ability to have hundreds or thousands of songs in your pocket. And being able to take a portable, rechargeable speaker into the bathroom while I’m showering, or out to the deck when I’m grilling, sure beats feeding D batteries into a boom box.

But… some songs just shouldn’t be heard on shitty speakers. Especially songs with great basslines.

Four Tops - “Bernadette” (1967)
bass by: James Jamerson

Sometimes a bassline is just there to add some oomph to the beat, or to fill in the low-end frequencies. In the right hands, the bassline is an essential expressive element of the music - maybe the essential element.

Gang of Four - “Damaged Goods” (1979)
bass by: Dave Allen

I’m not saying this SoundBot SB520 is going to replace your home system. But at 7" long with a little subwoofer built into each end, you don’t have to sacrifice the bassline for portability. Here are 14 basslines I love enough to listen to on the SoundBot SB520. They’re not “the greatest”, not “the best”, not “the” anything. That would be an absurd claim, and I don’t know genres like jazz, metal, and hip-hop well enough to make it.

The Heptones - “Book of Rules” (1973)
bass by: Leroy Sibbles

They’re just great, in 14 different ways, from hyper to funky, from melodic to angular. I’ll shut up now and let the basslines do the talking.

The Beatles - “Rain” (1966)
bass by: Paul McCartney

Minutemen - “The Glory of Man” (1984)
bass by: Mike Watt

Chic - “Good Times” (1979)
bass by: Bernard Edwards

Operation Ivy - “Freeze Up” (1989)
bass by: Matt Freeman

Brothers Johnson - “The Devil” (1976)
bass by: Louis E. “Thunder Thumbs” Johnson

Motorhead - “Iron Fist” (1982)
bass by: Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister

Elvis Costello and the Attractions - “I Don’t Want to Go To Chelsea” (1978)
bass by: Bruce Thomas

Sly & the Family Stone - “If You Want Me to Stay” (1973)
bass by: Rustee Allen

Johnny Clarke - “Cry Tough” (1976)
bass by: Robbie Shakespeare

Abdullah Ibrahim - “Ishmael” (1979)
bass by: Greg Brown

The Descendents - “Myage” (1982)
bass by: Tony Lombardo

I’m sure you’re thinking of fifty others that should have made this list. Post them in the discussion. And whether you buy the SoundBot SB520 or not, listen to them on decent speakers.

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