"Drop the Bass"

"Drop the Bass"

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Updated Jan 23, 2020 at 03:03AM EST by Y F.

Added Nov 05, 2014 at 04:24PM EST by Don.

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"Drop the Bass" is a catchphrase associated with the drop, or the climactic point in an electronic music track characterized by a sudden switch of rhythm in bass line after a progressive build-up. Online, the phrase became incorporated into various image macros and animated GIFs during the rise of the electronic dance music (EDM) genre in popular music, most notably dubstep, beginning in the early 2010s.


While the exact origin of the phrase “drop the bass” remains unknown, the drop has been used as a technical term[6] among electronic music producers since as early as the late 1990s. The earliest known usage of the phrase as the title of an electronic dance song can be attributed to German DJ Rocco's 2002 track “Drop the Bass” (shown below).


The expression remained relatively obscure until it was popularized with the rise of dubstep and EDM music in the late 2000s. In January 2011, the EDM producer Skrillex released a remix of the song "Cinema," in which the lyric "drop the bass" can be heard immediately before the drop portion of the track (shown below).[1]

On January 17th, 2012, Urban Dictionary[2] user ajbguitar123 submitted an entry for "drop the bass," which credited Skrillex's "Cinema" remix with popularizing the phrase. On June 15th, 2013, Redditor Jack100ney submitted an animated GIF of a man struggling to hold a large fish with the caption "Drop the Bass" to the /r/gifs[4] subreddit, where it accumulated upwards of 2,400 votes (88% upvoted) prior to being archived (shown below, left). On July 18th, Redditor Skoalify posted an animated GIF of a sloth falling over with the "Drop the Bass" caption to /r/funny,[5] where it received over 2,000 votes (89% upvoted) before it was archived.

On May 17th, 2014, The Lonely Island released a parody music video titled "When Will the Bass Drop?", in which a music producer repeatedly teases his audience before playing the track's drop (shown below). In six months, the video gathered more than 12.8 million views and 9,500 comments.

On September 27th, Redditor Ccrasus posted an animated GIF of a professional wrestler dropping a kick drum on a rival's head with the caption "Drop the Bass" (shown below). Within one month, the post gained over 3,800 votes (88% upvoted) on the /r/gifs[3] subreddit.


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External References

[1] Wikipedia – Cinema Skrillex Remix

[2] Urban Dictionary – drop the bass

[3] Reddit – DROP THE BASS

[4] Reddit – Drop the bass

[5] Reddit – Drop the bass sloth edition

[6] Sound on Sound – MIKE HIGHAM: Digital Doctor

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