Best Bass Player

Justin "Pookie" Haltmar

Some of the coolest bass players in rock & roll aren't, technically speaking, that great. With that, some of the most skilled rock bassists aren't that cool. Possessing both "the cool" and trained, band-geek chops is a rare thing. Justin "Pookie" Haltmar is blessed with both — and all of his bands are better because of him. He slaps sweaty, street funk riffs with the Jungle Fire, pummels tech-metal licks at a breakneck, punk-rock pace with the Disappeared, and lays back in the cut, anchoring gritty rock & roll numbers with a less-is-more low-end groove with Dan Johanning and the Wilderness. All the while, he does so effortlessly and unnoticed — planted behind the other players, grinning ear to ear.

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