Jaco, “The World’s Greatest Bass Player”

Dear Robert Trujillo and everyone involved with the making of the documentary film Jaco, I want to thank you for such a beautiful, soulful experience.

 

For years I have tried unsuccessfully to assimilate the artistry of Jaco Pastorius. I realize now I was half-listening to his musical meaning. I wasn’t tuned in to what he was effectively communicating. It wasn’t until I saw Jaco’s life on-screen did I fathom the rich genius of his full spirit.

You can stare forever at a needle and thread but until it sews a tapestry before your eyes, only then can one appreciate how fine someone’s craftsmanship was meant to be.

I view Jaco’s bass playing evolution as that moving needle and thread. He sewed together important musical collaborations in the time he had with us. The film proved how integral Jaco was to Ian Hunter,  Weather Report and Joni Mitchell’s renaissance with jazz.

 

I have dug deeper into Jaco Pastorius’s discography this weekend. Wow, I think I finally get it.  I urge you to see Jaco and allow yourself to enter his continuum.

West, Bruce and Laing

Since I posted about Leslie West’s upcoming album, Soundcheck I have been listening intently to Mountain, Cream and the supergroup in between, West, Bruce and Laing.

I recall the early 70’s on WNEW-FM, NY City’s progressive rock station. It was Scottso, Scott Muni who premiered West, Bruce and Laing in November, 1972. I had just started attending community college. We had a student lounge with a Marantz receiver connected to a Bose shelf speaker. I would arrive there early because it was a superior sound system to the hi-fi I had in my bedroom.

West, Bruce and Laing was a hardcore rock trio performing with piss and vinegar. I loved the tradeoff between Bruce and West. They were equally strong vocalists. Corky Laing’s drumming style accented their interplay.

Why Dontcha is the album you want to play, loud!

The only time I’m happy’s when I play my guitar

Jack Bruce is a natural craftsman. He continues to hone the craft of the bass guitar finding creative ways to play and use the 12 notes we have available.

I flash upon the Cream song from Fresh Cream (1966), N.S.U. that has the line, “The only time I’m happy’s when I play my guitar”. I can feel that sentiment running across the smile of Jack Bruce.

Bass Guitar Magazine celebrated their 100th issue with Jack Bruce on the cover recently (There’s that smile again). I downloaded the back issue on to my Apple iPad Air. The article “Just Jack” contains a chat about his new album.

Silver Rails – Drops on March 24, 2014, Label: Esoteric Antenna

The Special Edition features two disk Audio CDs and a DVD that shows the recording of Silver Rails at Abbey Road Studios. Silver Rails is available for preorder here.

Silver Rails is a warm collection of carefully crafted songs written in partnership with lyricists Pete Brown, Kip Hanrahan and Margrit Seyffer.

Jack Bruce collaborates with the following musicians on this album: Phil Manzanera, Robin Trower, Bernie Marsden, Uli Jon Roth, John Medeski, Malcolm Bruce and Cindy Blackman Santana.

Tracklisting:

Candlelight
Reach for the Night
Fields of Forever
Hidden Cities
Don’t Look Now
Rusty Lady
Industrial Child
Drone
Keep it Down
No Surrender

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