Slayer’s Tom Araya Reveals His Favorite Bass Players

This summer, Slayer will burn a path of hellfire across the country with Rob Zombie as part of the Hell on Earth tour, and will end up at New York’s Yankee Stadium in September to play the East Coast stop of their Big 4 tour with three other bands you might have heard of: Metallica, Megadeth, and Anthrax. (You can still pick up Revolver‘s Big Four special issue right here.) Looking ahead to both events, we went to Slayer’s vocalist-bassist Tom Araya to ask about his favorite fellow four-string badasses.

Les Claypool of Primus
“He’s the first one I can think of, because he’s just a tremendous bass player. I’ve had the privelege to see him play on Ozzfest ’99. It was amazing.”

Troy Sanders of Mastodon
“I’m not too up on a lot of the modern bass players, but he’s great. He’s also a good bass player and singer, which is, of course, something I appreciate.”

Stanley Clarke
“He’s a fantastic bass player. He’s someone who Rocky George from Suicidal Tendencies introduced me to.”

Billy Sheehan of Mr. Big and Steve Vai
“A really amazing bass player. He and Steve Vai playing together, man—amazing.”

 

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  • http://twitter.com/binaryandio Modena

     (๑◔‿◔๑):))

  • http://twitter.com/LuisKaba Luis Kaba ☑Verified

    Fieldy of KORN

  • xTira

    Ashley Purdy. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bashley-Joseph/100002355425444 Bashley Joseph

    John Myung of Dream Theater and Les Claypool of Primus. Tom Araya already listed Les as one of his favourites but I do have to mention Primus also does a kick ass cover of Metallica’s: The Thing that Should Not Be…which is featured on their “Rhinoplasty CD” by Interscope Records.

  • Topsyteddybear

    Where is Ashley Purdy?! This guy is the best bassist, in my opinion, of the 21st century!! You can’tget more badass than Ash. Thank you.

  • Dmurcia

    dmurcia@tropisounds.com

    If you are a bass player with an iPhone and you want a FREE code for the REAL BASS iPhone app, write to the email below.  First 50 get it.

  • Xcthulhu

    steve harris!

  • Xcthulhu

    steve harris!

  • Xcthulhu

    steve harris!

  • Szor1

    GEDDY LEE?

  • Szor1

    GEDDY LEE?

  • Electronikiller

    The bass player from Dying Fetus is amazing too. He is also a very brutal singer… definitely worth checking out! :D

  • Electronikiller

    The bass player from Dying Fetus is amazing too. He is also a very brutal singer… definitely worth checking out! :D

  • Electronikiller

    The bass player from Dying Fetus is amazing too. He is also a very brutal singer… definitely worth checking out! :D

  • CLIFFEMALL

    omg WHERE IS CLIFF BURTON!

  • http://www.facebook.com/paul.m.lizzi Paul Michael Lizzi

    this is missing Dan Briggs from between the buried and me…and Fat Mike from NOFX

  • http://www.facebook.com/paul.m.lizzi Paul Michael Lizzi

    this is missing Dan Briggs from between the buried and me…and Fat Mike from NOFX

  • http://www.facebook.com/paul.m.lizzi Paul Michael Lizzi

    this is missing Dan Briggs from between the buried and me…and Fat Mike from NOFX

  • erpvb

    cliff was good but not that good dude that he should be 1 of his favorite bass players, nice line up of bass players couldnt agree more
     

  • Me

    RONNIE JAMES DIO!

  • Marc Zitman

    Jaco Pastorius. The Hendrix of Bass. There is Bass before and then there’s bass after Jaco.Robert Trujillo of Metallica now plays Jaco’s bass know as the “Bass of Doom” and plays on it on stage.

  • Marcel

    Jason Maguire of OTEP  EVILJ

  • Sw Vs16

    Stefan Fimmers of Necrophagist
    that dude burns the bass

  • Niko_10_777

    WTF¡¡¡ CLIFF BURTON

  • Madtobehere

    No love for Steve Digiorgio?

  • Poppi

    He forgot many bass players : Alex Webster Cannibal Corpse
    Steve di Georgio Sadus,Lemmy etc.

  • Nucknfuts

    Geezer Butler? Steve Harris?

  • Nucknfuts

    Geezer Butler? Steve Harris?

  • Nucknfuts

    Geezer Butler? Steve Harris?

  • surprise

    Pretty boring list.

    • Ian

      Yeah, except for the guy from Mastodon, it’s the standard list of “great” bassists from 20 years ago.  Was hoping Tom would dig a little deeper.

    • Ian

      Yeah, except for the guy from Mastodon, it’s the standard list of “great” bassists from 20 years ago.  Was hoping Tom would dig a little deeper.

  • Guerabasura

    This is Tom’s list…Les Claypool fucking rocks!

  • Guerabasura

    This is Tom’s list…Les Claypool fucking rocks!

  • http://www.facebook.com/OnceWasTommy Juda Farmer

    Cliff Burton is dead! He has been dead for 20+ years. He WAS a decent Bass player, but hardly a virtuoso like Sheehan. He wasn’t an innovator, like Claypool either and has no place among the “best” Bass players.
    Get off the Metallica nuts, just cause they are sell outs and demand the most money for everything from shows to shirts, don’t make them or any of their individual members “greats”. Its people like those wondering where Cliff is, that make Metallica famous. There are hundreds of Metal acts that blow that crappy band away and Slayer is a perfect example. No selling out and always sticking to what made them AND keep them great.
    Metallica switches up the style, everytime a new sound comes along. Cliff would have quit, had he not died. He may not have been a Bass great, but he had passion for the music and the metal. Something Met gave up long ago.

  • http://www.facebook.com/OnceWasTommy Juda Farmer

    Cliff Burton is dead! He has been dead for 20+ years. He WAS a decent Bass player, but hardly a virtuoso like Sheehan. He wasn’t an innovator, like Claypool either and has no place among the “best” Bass players.
    Get off the Metallica nuts, just cause they are sell outs and demand the most money for everything from shows to shirts, don’t make them or any of their individual members “greats”. Its people like those wondering where Cliff is, that make Metallica famous. There are hundreds of Metal acts that blow that crappy band away and Slayer is a perfect example. No selling out and always sticking to what made them AND keep them great.
    Metallica switches up the style, everytime a new sound comes along. Cliff would have quit, had he not died. He may not have been a Bass great, but he had passion for the music and the metal. Something Met gave up long ago.

    • SCOT

      fuck you you fuck douche what gives you  the right to  pass judgement on anyone when you probably cant play a fucking note yourself cliff was and always will be one of the greats so keep  your fucking  pie hole shut RIP CLIFF

    • Rickinator

      lol u eat poop

  • stillis

    slayer is a great band but same thing over and over.all instruments played fast and thats it.the fact that they have the angry band immage is a marketing itself.death magnetic is better than many slayer albums including world painted blood.i agree that metallica changed to shit during the 90s but nothing can be compared to their first 4 albums.as an answer to mr farmer

    • Arvin

      You obviously never listened to Seasons in the abyss or South of heaven. Real Slayer fans know that they schanged their sounds on those two records and started making slower songs and Araya started using more “real” singing. Please read up on the subject more before you comment again.

  • Metal Chris

    Hey @facebook-1269723257:disqus, you really can’t say Slayer never sold out. Last time I saw them (October 2010 in Baltimore) in the middle of their set Kerry King brought out a shot of Jagermeister and instructed everyone to buy one and do a shot with him. Of course the tour was sponsored by Jagermeister and he made sure to mention there name as many times as he could. In the middle of their concert! If that’s not selling out I don’t know what is.

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

      • Metal Chris

        With ticket sales of course. They were playing an arena and the GA floor was sold out (don’t know if the seats did or not though). They weren’t cheap either!  What KK did is totally selling out and say what you will but Metallica has never stopped their set to put a commercial into one of their concerts (not that they aren’t sellouts for their own reasons, thanks Bob Rock).

        • Jrobthrasher

          yeah but you cant blame kerry king for this. it wouldve said in his contract with jagermeister that he do something like that so please do not blame the beast

          • Metal Chris

            Nobody held a gun to his head to sign that contract. That’s literally the definition of selling out. Don’t get me wrong I love Slayer, but don’t pretend they aren’t sell outs now. Don’t get me started on Jeff Hanneman’s Heiniken guitar (he is sponsored by them and that’s why he plays it).

        • Harleyawaits

          Metallica sold out the minute Cliff Burton was killed.  You know it as well as I do.  KK did that shit in Milwaukee too but really, is that a sell out??  I’d beg to differ.  It’s what his sponser said to do and guess what, James Hetfield woulda done the same damn thing if it was what his sponser wanted him to do as well. 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Blainecowling

      Hey Dumbass, that is business and a necessary evil. Selling out is writing music for radio. How the fuck are they supposed to operate without sponsors these days playing anything bigger than bars? 

    • Greg

      by your arguement every band is a sell out. Ever open up a CD? Inside is says what every instruement the band plays with. It does that because they get sponsership from the makers of those instruements and by listing them in their CD’s they get free gear and shit. So I guess every band has sold out. Also bands no longer get much revenue from CD sales, all they have left is tickets, and merch. Now you’re implying they shouldn’t make money from sponsers neither. So I guess the only way to be truely metal is to be poor and you having to quit your job at the gas station every time you go on tour.

      People use the sell out card way too much. Selling out is compromising your music to increase record sales. Slayer has never made radio hits, never changed the way they dress, or changed their music for anyone.
       And why can’t a band be allowed to be successful? It’s okay for us as fans of metal to  go to college, become lawyers, doctors, do TV commercials etc. So why as metal fans are we not sell outs? Why are fans allowed to be successful and do what they want but not the bands? This is their careers, they have wives and kids, and if bands don’t make money at what they do than bands can’t afford to keep putting out music.

      If it wasn’t for Jagermeister I wouldn’t have seen Slayer, Testament, and Megadeth last year. So I give props to Jagermeister along with Kerry King. Be Thankful and not such a bitch that there are corporations out there cool enough as Jagermeister who support metal instead of some lame pop shit.

  • Aalborg

    Where the fuck is Lemmy?

  • Aalborg

    Where the fuck is Lemmy?

  • Lime

    Les Claypool is the man

  • Lime

    Les Claypool is the man

  • Lime

    Les Claypool is the man

  • Lime

    Les Claypool is the man

  • Lime

    Les Claypool is the man

  • Lime

    Les Claypool is the man

  • Blainecowling

    Geddy and Trujillo need a lil props

  • Blainecowling

    Geddy and Trujillo need a lil props

  • Blainecowling

    Geddy and Trujillo need a lil props

  • Blainecowling

    Geddy and Trujillo need a lil props

  • Anonymous

    I get that it’s Tom’s list and it’s who impresses him, and the guys listed have some serious skill, but the list seems far far from comprehensive.  No Glenn Hughes?  No Steve Harris? No Geezer Butler?  And what about John Paul Jones or Flea?  

  • Rush

    Geddy Lee? Les Claypool would put Geddy on his list. 

  • Rush

    Geddy Lee? Les Claypool would put Geddy on his list. 

  • Rush

    Geddy Lee? Les Claypool would put Geddy on his list. 

  • Aol

    Where is Lemmy? 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RQ4JWAJMNVDZG6PFHIKB66SQKU wanna guess?

    all this animosity. save it for the pit. bassists have their own sound and style, whether cliff or les… to each his own, for you to rage on someone because they didnt like who you do makes you just as bad as the sell outs. sell outs sound just like everyone else thats trending at the moment, you want them to like what you like…sounds like pandering to sell outs.
     respect each others views, thats what slayer would want you to do. 
    coombahyah muther fuckers!!! besides…whats wrong with flea…hes like an unsung hero.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=583698790 Danny Ivarsson

      amen to that!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RQ4JWAJMNVDZG6PFHIKB66SQKU wanna guess?

    all this animosity. save it for the pit. bassists have their own sound and style, whether cliff or les… to each his own, for you to rage on someone because they didnt like who you do makes you just as bad as the sell outs. sell outs sound just like everyone else thats trending at the moment, you want them to like what you like…sounds like pandering to sell outs.
     respect each others views, thats what slayer would want you to do. 
    coombahyah muther fuckers!!! besides…whats wrong with flea…hes like an unsung hero.

  • gee

    troy fuckin’ sanders!!!!!!! yeah boy!!!!!

  • Anonymous

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  • Ancient One Carlo

    flea, amonst others, has been one of the best, and so does steve harris, i dont know, but i still think that funky stuff its difficult kind of playing that another one style over this f…. planet. I dont know if you people think the same as i do

  • Ancient One Calro

    anchio posso dir che rex ryan has been one of the greatest on this discussion too

  • Ancient One Calro

    anchio posso dir che rex ryan has been one of the greatest on this discussion too

  • Ancient One Carlo

    that fat ass bss player from korn e stato uno dei piu grandi!!!!, and so does primus basss player

  • Ancient One Carlo

    tool bass man , has he been forgotten too?

  • Ancient One Carlo

    dont fuck me like that, tool man, is a big mother f… one bass bas ass bass player

  • believeinnothing

    3 words: Peter Fucking Steele

  • Sludgeon

    and not mentioning Lemmy is just… ugh…

  • Rickinator

    where’s Nikki Sixx?