Gene Simmons has had easily one of the most recognizable roles in rock and roll over the past 45 years or so. Many of the songs he's written or co-written have stood the test of time as rock solid hits. Love him or hate him, his persona is locked into rock history forever. However, this isn't about his persona, it's about his ability and standing as a legit bass player and his place amongst his peers. He's never really been placed up there with many of the classic greats on any list, and rightfully so when compared to such names as Squire, Jones, Entwhistle or Bruce. But, is it fair to even make those comparisons? To me, he's hugely underrated in terms of being a solid foundational rock and roll bassist, especially in the context of their first 8 albums (including the two live releases). His riffs and songs, while certainly simple, were the basis of many solid rock songs. But, who to compare him to? Is he any less of a player than, say, Pete Way? Geezer Butler? Maybe even in terms of the bass riffs of a Tom Hamilton or Phil Lynott? It's kind of hard to compare his playing to many others, simply because his role was often overshadowed by the circus act that was their show. Just where would you place his playing within the context of rock and roll history?