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How many of us 'really' listen to Jaco?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by davidjackson, Jul 30, 2012.

  1. davidjackson


    Sep 10, 2011
    I was chatting with some friends about bass players the other day. When somebody asked who the best of all time was I mentioned Jaco and my wife said something like "That's funny, I never hear you listening to that stuff."

    I thought about it and realised that, actually, I hardly ever listen to him. If I'm being honest, I have listened to Jaco's original solo record about twice in full. I have a great CD called The Birthday Concert but, again, have only listened to it a handful of times. I do listen to Weather Report from time to time.

    Do any of you guys ever really sit down and listen to Jaco's music for pleasure? If I want to listen to great music for pleasure with great bass tracks I tend to go for stuff featuring Duck Dunn, Jamerson or Bob Babbett. Does this mean I should be naming them when asked about the greatest. To my mind the music they played on beats anyting that Jaco played on.

    Is Jaco's music simply "better than it sounds" or am I alone in citing him as a hero but never actually listening to his work?
  2. @war


    Feb 29, 2008
    Port Elizabeth, South Africa
    Endorsing Artist: Cort basses and Hartke Amps
    I'm in the same boat as you then...

    No doubt Jaco did a LOT for the role of the electric bass guitar in music and in a solo context, but I have never really LOVED the music he is most famous for.

    I may put him on a list of the most influential bassplayers of all-time, but I would not call him one of MY main influences...

    Feels like I'm committing some sort of bassplayer's sin as I type this because of the way so many players talk about him, so I'll just :bag:
  3. Lo-E


    Dec 19, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    It's not a sin. Strokes for folks....

    I haven't listened to him a whole lot lately, but I did have about a ten-year run when I listened to him all the time. Like... really a lot.

    Joni Mitchell's Hijiera and Mingus are two of my favorite bass records of all time.
  4. I'm with you. Jaco's influence is hard to deny but I'm not really a fan and I rarely listen to his music.
  5. grinx

    grinx Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2003
    Raleighwood, NC
    1) can't dance to it
    2) can't sing along with it
    3) can't bang head to it
  6. I do. At first I listened to the odd song here and there, but now I listen to a CD the whole way through every week or two.
  7. PlungerModerno


    Apr 12, 2012
    I've only heard some of his work - but His solo record, Heavy weather and 8:30 blow my socks off. I'll get around to everything in time.

    Essential listening. Not daily but definitely weekly. Seriously expressive.
  8. T. Alan Smith

    T. Alan Smith Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    Put me in this boat as well. While I really enjoy watching an occasional Youtube vid of him, I don't own anything he's on outside of a few Weather Report tunes. I tend to listen to Rush, Van Halen & Genesis.
  9. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather Supporting Member

    I have listened to Jaco.....a lot! I get what he did and he was innovative (his use of harmonics was insane) but honestly, I heard Lamont Johnson (Brainstorm) first back in 1977 and he was doing things on fretless that most bassists weren't doing back then either. There were other fretless players as well emerging from the same time period.

    Jaco the best? Not in my opinion. Definitely one of the greats though.

    Here's some more of Lamont Johnson. Honestly, IMO, he was doing what Jaco did but he also had thumping skills to add. He does talk about Jaco in the interview linked above.
  10. father of fires

    father of fires Commercial User

    Nov 29, 2006
    Chief of Medicine at Damnation Audio
    The only religious experience I've ever had listening to music was sitting in my car in a parking lot before class listening to Opus Pocus. I'd listened to that album 1000 times but something got to me that morning.

    I don't listen to him much anymore but that moment was intense.

    Also my favorite thing of his was the Trio of Doom live record. The studio stuff was missing something.
  11. stantone


    Apr 1, 2012
    I think of Jaco as a bass player with a band. Dunn, Jamerson, and Babbet were bass players in bands.
  12. wishbasssix


    Apr 11, 2012
    Like what was mentioned above, I don't actually listen to Jaco all that much, but I do listen to his work with Weather Report and Joni Mitchell quite a bit. I also don't listen to Les Claypool nearly as much as I listen to Primus, if you know what I mean. I've listened to Jaco as an excellent component of great musical collaborations, but I don't really worship his bass parts on their own merit.

    And I forgot to add another great album with his playing on it "Bright Sized Life".
  13. kevteop


    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    I listened to him quite a bit when I was 16 or so, haven't much since. I don't listen to Marcus Miller or Vic Wooten either, because their music isn't very good.
  14. onda'bass

    onda'bass Supporting Member

    Sep 5, 2010
    Buffalo Ny
    Early on I listened to him like crazy, now not so much, Still A big influence on me...
  15. Tendril


    Sep 28, 2004
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I just don't dig his music. Obviously, as was said, a hugely influential player, just not my cup of tea.
  16. grygrx

    grygrx Lookout! Here comes the Fuzz!

    Dec 24, 2003
    Columbia, MO
    My feeling: Meh
    Responses of others (non-bass players) when I mention his name: Who?

    Lasting cultural influence: shrug...
  17. lburton2

    lburton2 Les Is More

    May 15, 2008
    Detroit, MI
    At one point in time I had purchased the Best of Jaco album and listened to it for months on end.. And Opus Pocus was quite definitely one of the most mind blowing songs I've ever heard
  18. bucephylus

    bucephylus Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 18, 2002
    General Manager TecPadz LLC
    This gets endless debate on TB. Jaco's work is prodigious, to say the least. He was a treasure.

    Which is not to say everyone is going to like him. When he hit the scene, I was kind of in denial / trying to ignore him for a while. Also, I didn't get his sound right away. I learned.

    Each to their own. I listen to him sporadically these days; and continue to be amazed at many levels. He was deep.
  19. Marial

    Marial weapons-grade plum

    Apr 8, 2011
    I don't listen to him much, but when I do it's either his solo debut, or his work with Joni Mitchell, especially Mingus. The Dry Cleaner from Des Moines is one of my favorite songs of all time.

    Weather Report and most other fusion bands give me hives and I have never been a fan of Saturday Night Live-style jazz/rock (whatever that late seventies/early eighties big-band style might be called), so much of Jaco's work isn't to my taste.
  20. JonahTheAmazing


    Dec 19, 2010
    He did interesting things, but I wouldn't spend that much time listening for fun. I like a couple songs here or there. Although I play bass, I don't usually listen to music solely for bass. If I listen to a song for bass, it has more to do with the content rather than the instrument. I do appreciate the sound and character of the bass alone, but I play to myself all the time. Solo bass things really have to grab me to get me interested. I don't believe everything Jaco played was that way.

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