Lead singers who are bassists.

The only ones that immediately spring to mind are:

  1. Paul McCartney (debatable, I guess)
  2. Roger Waters (also somewhat debatable)
  3. Sting (not debatable)

Who else is there? Any ideas what would account for the seeming lack of lead singers amongst the bass playing crowd?

Les Claypool from Primus.

I think the people with the personality to want to be a lead singer also like the “coolness” of being a guitar player as well. So they naturally gravitate toward both.

Geddy Lee of Rush.

Jack Bruce of Cream and Geddy Lee of Rush.

Both kick ass bassists. Both mediocre singers.

Geddy Lee

There’s Lemmy from Motorhead.

Why is Paul McCartney “debatable”? He plays bass and sings lead in Wings and in that other band he was in before that.

Let’s list all of the Bass Player Lead Singers in Rock n’ Roll?

The thread linked to by Thudlow pre-empts most of my suggestions, but I can still add Richard Sinclair (Hatfield & the North, Camel, Caravan).

Dammit, this is totally different. My thread doesn’t have a question mark at the end of it.

In my defense, my search kept timing out.

John Doe, when he was in X.

KRM - why the “debatable” for Sir Paul? Just curious.

I believe that John Lennon sang about as many songs as Paul. In my mind at least, that would make it debatable that he was “the” lead singer for the Beatles. He is obviously a bassist that can and did sing lead.

I’ll second the mention of Steve Kilbey (The Church) from the old thread.

Jon Camp of Renaissance. OK, Annie Haslam does most of the vocals, but Jon sang lead on a couple.

I also think that some styles and songs in rock make it difficult rhythmically to play the bass line and sing at the same time.
Guitar parts tend to meld with the voice part, plus if there’s another guitarist, the singer can even stop playing for lengths of time and have everything work fine.

Sheryl Crow, Kip Winger, Lemmy, Tom Araya (Slayer).

He still plays bass live. Not on all songs, mostly on Beatles songs.

Rob Zabrecky from Possum Dixon, and… didn’t Brian Wilson play bass for the Beach Boys? That guy from Spacehog did, I think, and Jemaine of Flight of the Conchords often plays bass.

Come to think of it, Brian Wilson didn’t usually sing lead, Mike Love did.

Bassist Benjamin Orr sang lead on lots of The Cars stuff. Sometimes I mix up whether it’s Orr or Rick Ocasek singing, but I know it’s Orr singing “Drive” and I’m 99% sure that Orr’s sings on “Just What I Needed” and “Let’s Go”.