Jaco Pastorius

John Francis Anthony "Jaco" Pastorius III (/ˈdʒɑːkoʊ pæˈstɔːriəs/; December 1, 1951 – September 21, 1987) was an American jazz bassist who was a member of Weather Report from 1976 to 1981. He worked with Pat Metheny and Joni Mitchell, and recorded albums as a solo artist and band leader. His bass playing employed funk, lyrical solos, bass chords, and innovative harmonics. As of 2017, he is the only electric bassist of seven bassists inducted into the DownBeat Jazz Hall of Fame, and has been lauded as one of the best electric bassists of all time.

Pastorius suffered from drug addiction and mental health problems throughout his professional life, and despite his widespread acclaim, over the latter part of his life he had problems holding down jobs due to his unreliability. In frequent financial trouble, he was often homeless throughout the mid 1980s. He died in 1987, as a result of injuries sustained in a fight outside of a South Florida after hours club.

After his death, his work continued to influence musicians. He was elected to the DownBeat Hall of Fame in 1988. He was the subject of the 2014 documentary film Jaco.

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