One September night in 1987, a man (who suffered from both mental illness and a heavy drug & alcohol addiction) was caught sneaking onstage at a Carlos Santana concert in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. He was ejected from the premises, so he decided to go to another nightclub. It is unclear what happened next. Some say the man kicked in a glass door after being refused entrance to the club. But, others disagree. Whatever happened, the man ended up getting in a violent confrontation with the club’s bouncer. This man was then rushed to the hospital where he suffered from multiple face fractures, and a horrible disfigurement to his face. He also lost his right eye, and sustained irreversible brain damage. Then, he slipped into a coma and was put on life support. Soon after, it was apparent that his brain was no longer functioning, and his family made the difficult decision to remove him from life support. After he was removed from life support, the man’s heart kept beating for 3 hours.
He died at the age of 35.
This man was jazz bassist Jaco Pastorius. Not only was Jaco a musical genius, but he was also most likely the world’s greatest bass player. He is remembered for his unique style and amazing technique on the fretless bass, and his influence on modern electric bass playing is widely recognized. Jaco will never be forgotten…
So, before you go out, get intoxicated, and do something stupid tonight, remember that story…
(If you don’t have speakers for your ‘puter, I suggest you go out and buy them now.)
Lastly, I hope that Jaco‘s story stays with you, but more importantly, I hope that you take the time to check out some of his music.
Together, we can keep his legacy alive.