Stuart Zender names the song that inspired his hallmark bassline on Jamiroquai's biggest-selling hit

Stuart Zender onstage with Mark Ronson
(Image credit: Gibson)

Lauded as one of the most influential bass players to ever emerge from the UK, Stuart Zender’s bass work with Jamiroquai in the early 1990s gave rise to a new breed of bassist who continue to cite Stuart as a key influence. “It freaks me out to this day,” he says. “I was really young and I guess I was trying to show off and be a really good bass player. I'm not as flash now, but for the first three years of me being in the band I was like a kid in a candy shop.”

Jamiroquai’s 1993 debut served to highlight Zender’s funky and syncopated basslines on tracks like Too Young to Die and the title track, Emergency On Planet Earth. The album soon elevated Stuart to bass royalty. “I was really young when that album came out, but everybody wanted to know us. Guys like Gucci would come down to our shows and fit us with designer clothes; it was crazy.”

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Nick Wells

Nick Wells was the Editor of Bass Guitar magazine from 2009 to 2011, before making strides into the world of Artist Relations with Sheldon Dingwall and Dingwall Guitars. He's also the producer of bass-centric documentaries, Walking the Changes and Beneath the Bassline, as well as Production Manager and Artist Liaison for ScottsBassLessons. In his free time, you'll find him jumping around his bedroom to Kool & The Gang while hammering the life out of his P-Bass.