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Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Alvaro Martín Gómez A., Feb 10, 2006.

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  1. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Hi everybody.

    Just as a side note for this thread, I'd like to mention that many people have said that if Jaco and Stanley Clarke haven't existed, the bass guitar technique and playing concept wouldn't be as evolved as they are nowadays, an statement that somewhat I agree with.

    Anyway, my point with this thread isn't to discuss the validity of that since it's just an opinion. My question is: Is it me or Jaco has MUCH more talk here than Stanley? If that's true (maybe I'm wrong - search hasn't helped so much), what do you think is the reason for that? Maybe because Jaco is more controversial? I'd like to hear some opinions on this. Thank you in advance!
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    I think Jaco is more controversial, as he is harder to get, for your typical rock fan.

    So - I think most bass players can hear Stanley's fast streams of notes on solos and the virtuosity is more.. "obvious"..?

    Also - Stanley did quite a few things which are "rock" -oriented" with distorted guitars etc. - like School Days - it's a rock riff -everybody can like that!! :)

    But Jaco is much more coming from a Jazz background (black R & B as well) - but you have to expect that most people round here, are going to be rock fans and so every month, there will be people saying they don't "get" Jaco - as he is a long way away from a "Rock" sensibility" - he was a showman, sure and liked Jimmy Hendrix - but this only really came out in his live solo spots.

    Studio albums like "Heavy Weather" are serious Jazz and it needs a certain amount of Jazz sensibility/understanding to "get" it, completely.
  3. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I agree with much of your post, except this, of course-

    IMO, Clarke is coming from a Jazz background; more so than Jaco...Jaco's background is R&B, Rock, Funk, Afro-Cuban, & Jazz.
    IMHO, one of Jaco's strengths was his ability to make his stuff work within a slightly esoteric Jazz band like Weather Report.

    I'm sure Black R&B played a major role in Clarke's early development, too. C'mon.
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Well - yes you're right - but I was trying to stress that the difference is that Stanley does have a fair amount of "rock" material in his recorded catalogue - everybody seems to get to hear School Days, as I was saying..

    Whereas Jaco's studio recordings that people buy - it's always Heavy Weather - are very much in the Jazz area - no heavy distorted guitars, no bombast - Jazz sensibility required!

    What I meant to say, I suppose is that Jaco's most popular work shows off his Jazz influences (maybe R&B) .

    Whereas Stanley's most popular work has a lot of rock influence, bombastic soloing - so your average TB'er tends to get it!
  5. Please don't flame me but...

    Stanley couldn't tie Jaco's shoes.

    THAT"S why Jaco gets more ink around here.
  6. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    ehm, have you ever seen Stanley play? Have you ever seen Stanley play DB?

    I don't think so.
  7. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    I doubt it myself....

    Stanley was WAY more important to me as a young player than Jaco ever was... and I'm a fretless guy!!!

    The first 'Jazz' album (yes a vinyl album) was "Time Exposure" from Stanley. I had just gotten into Jeff Beck and heard he'd played on it... bought it shortly after it was released.

    Stanley is a monster and a living legend!
  8. Baryonyx

    Baryonyx Banned

    Jul 11, 2005
    Marathon Man
    I'm not sure why jaco gets talked about more, I do feel that perhaps Stanley is sometimes overlooked. Oddities aside, I much prefer Stanley, he's one of my favourite bassists of all time, whereas Jaco is more something I'll listen to in passing.

    I feel that Jaco certainly has more listeners than Stan. Everyone knows Weather Report, everyone and their grandma can do a half decent rendition of the first 20 seconds of portrait of tracy. But how many people listen to Return To Forever? Despite having the allure of Stan and Al Di Meola, I still hardly hear about them, despite the fact that they have recorded some fantastic stuff.

    I would also say that Stan came from more of a jzz background, let us not forget he used to be an upright purist with a disdain for electric basses until he had to start playing electric in Return To Forever. But I think Stan's strength has been his diversity. Also, Jaco has gotten a fair amout of "posthumous recognition", personified as a troubled genius of which everyone should listen to. Not that I'm saying you shouldn't listen to Jaco, hes great and all, but it seems to be a rite of passage amoung bassists to embrace Jaco, as if he now represents a players ability to appreciate complex music. Stan is not viewed in this way, and as such, is more "underground".
  9. kenlacam


    Nov 8, 2005
    akron, ohio
    I totally disagree with your opinion of Stanley being more of a "virtuoso" than Jaco. I do agree that it takes an appreciation of jazz to "get" Jaco,but that does not diminish his talent or make Stanley a better bassist. I think Stanley's virtuosity would be more appealing to those who only understand mainstream music. IMO, it's like saying that Kenny G is a better sax player than Charlie Parker (which we know not to be true), because the average joe can get Kenny G 's playing more than Miles, probably.
  10. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Well that is not what I said - you even quoted what I actually said in your post!!

    So I was saying that while both are virtuoso players, I think that Stanley's "Rock"-oriented tracks with bombastic soloing, make it easier for the ordinary rock fan to appreciate his virtuosity!

    I never said that I thought Stanley was the better bassist and I certainly don't believe it !! :rollno:

    That's exactly what I was saying - read it again!! :mad:

    Err that's just rubbish - I woudn't try to "rate" players like Parker, Miles etc., but I certainly woudn't mention them in the same breath as Kenny G!! :spit:
  11. BassChuck

    BassChuck Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    I learned about Stanley Clarke from Return To Forever work and then an album he did with Dexter Gordon. It never occured to me that Clarke was anything other than jazz until I heard School Days and really wondered what he was up to.

    Jaco has always sounded more jazz than main stream, but then there are curious things like Come On Come Over with Sam and Dave.

    Both are obviously great musicians. I think one thing that confuses people is that Jaco was developing until his early death. Stanley continues to record, but doesn't seem to be the ground breaker that he once was.

    Still, I've heard Stanley with Return To Forever and with his own group about a year ago. Both times I left the performance truely excited about bass playing and feelling like I had heard a great musician.

    And yes... we owe them both a great deal.
  12. My take is that the reason for the disparity is that Jaco changed the very way the instrument was heard and thought about in a way that Stanley didn't. For all practical purposes, Jaco basically invented the current conception of the capabilities of the fretless electric bass guitar. He was in some senses a revolutionary, whereas Stanley IMO was not.

    This doesn't necessarily mean Jaco was a better bassist. You could make a case that Stanley was and is.
  13. I don't think this is really true. In the last few years of his life, IMO he didn't appear to be developing at all. In fact, I'd say he was going backwards--he'd lost some of what he had.

    I say this as someone who has the greatest respect for Jaco's legacy and was deeply influenced and inspired by him while coming up. But artistically, his last few years added nothing. It's not about blame; he had his demons and his problems, and I'm not pointing the finger. I'm just saying, his musical development, by all appearances, had stopped, and we can't actually know what it might have been. Even if he'd been healthy in allr espects, we don't know if he'd have continued to blaze new trails at the same rate. Maybe he'd have just found his "thing" and stuck with it.
  14. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Eh - what on earth are you talking about...:confused:

    I haven't said one was better than the other in any way and I can't see the point of doing so - you are just misreading my posts and Richard's who was just saying you could make a case...

    Which is not the same thing!

    I think you need to go back and read all the posts carefully before jumping to unjustified conclusions!
  15. MD


    Nov 7, 2000
    Marin Co. CA.

    Jaco was an innovator. He gave his bass a voice like no one else at that time. He offered a new and different approach to harmony and rhythm as well. Who before him came out with the ideas set forth on that first solo recording. I don't think Stanley quite crossed the line between being an amazing player and true innovator.

    Also... his early death automatically shot him to the status of icon.
  16. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    That last sentence is just total rubbish!!

    I have many albums with Jaco and Stanley that I really like and I am not interested in rating or ranking bassists - I'm happy to like all good players!

    It's about music - not egos!
  17. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Well that's exactly what I've been doing - you have obviously been misreading these posts as some kind of Jaco vs, Stanley contest , which has never been in my mind and I'm sure it wasn't in Richard's- so I have no idea why you have picked on us...:confused:

  18. AxtoOx


    Nov 12, 2005
    Duncan, Okla.
    Back to the original question, you got me, I'm well into middle age and had not even heard of Jaco till I got on this board.
    I saw Stanley Clarke live back in 79 or 80 and he made a MASSIVE IMPACT on the whole way I looked at Bass, so for me Stanley was far more of an influence on me than Jaco. Stanley has influenced me for over 25 years, Jaco just recently. I still like Stanleys style over Jacos.
    What I have noticed here is if you don't agree that Jaco was the greatest ever, people tend to get very emotional about it.
  19. What on earth are you talking about? The original poster asked a question (which was *not*, incidentally, which bassist was better but why one was seemingly talked about more than the other), I gave my opinion. What, exactly, do you think the "debate" is?
  20. You're only qualified to speak for yourself, not for me. If that's what you think, cool. Whether or not it's what *I* think (and if you actually read what I posted, you'll see that I didn't say), you'll just have to deal with it.

    Lighten up, Francis.

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