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Jacos death

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Phunky, May 8, 2005.


  1. Phunky

    Phunky Guest

    Aug 1, 2004
    Sweden
    What was that all about? I've hard Jaco got ill in his last years or something?


    Thankfully //Phunky
     
  2. I heard he was shot or something for running off his mouth, I have a feeling I'm rong though
     
  3. NJL

    NJL

    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    he wasn't shot
     
  4. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Jaco suffered from bipolar disorder (manic-depression). During his last few years, it had begun to pretty much take over his life. I don't know if it's because he stopped taking his medication - or if it happened in spite of his medication. But he had become increasingly erratic and out of control...

    His life ended when he got into a bar fight with some guy (who probably didn't know who Jaco Pastorius was). Jaco apparently provoked him. And the guy beat him - badly. Jaco never recovered...

    That's what I know about it. There are many other Talk Bassers who undoubtedly know the saga much better...

    MM
     
  5. 20db pad

    20db pad

    Feb 11, 2003
    I been everywhere, man...
    None. At all.
    The story of Jaco's decline and death is documented in the biography written by Bill Milkowski. It's actually a good read and a stern warning (for me) wrapped up in one book.

    In a nutshell, Jaco had an existing biologically - based mental illness that was not made any better by his abuse of alcohol and illegal drugs.

    He spent some time in NYC, and eventually made his way down to his boyhood home of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. There, he pretty much lived life as a homeless person. He was still suffering from his dual-diagnosis problems and was generally acting erratically and not functioning in a normal, healthy way.

    One night, Jaco tried to gain entry to an after hours club in Wilton Manor, and was unneccesarily beaten by a bouncer trained in the martial arts. Jaco died from this beating a short time later in a hospital.
     
  6. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    He was beaten to death by a bar bouncer at a club he had been kicked out of numerous times. Jaco's later days were not pleasent, the combination of mental illness, cocane, and alcohol abuse proved deadly. He was sleeping on park bench's, he "lost" the bass of doom. He would show up in clubs high, ask to sit in, play OK for a tune or two then freak out. I still feel when I'm listening to the latter Jaco stuff, that I'm like a roadside "gawker" at a bad car accident. The era didn't help, Coke was common on the "Deli" trays in the dressing rooms of bigger venues, and drug abbuse was prevelent among fusion "stars" at the time. For Jaco combinned with his Mental illness it proved lethal. I still remember where I was when I heard the news " the real day the music died"
     
  7. Phunky

    Phunky Guest

    Aug 1, 2004
    Sweden
    What the hell was he doing homeless? He must have still been quite well known and have some contacts down there? Does someone got any more info about this?
     
  8. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Three words:

    Read the book.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Vysous

    Vysous

    Mar 29, 2005
    Unfortunatelly, lots of people showed their back to Jaco, nobody cared, nobody gave him help hand.... Unfortunately, many musicians as Marcus Miller, Joe Zawinul cant understand why they didnt help him... Marcus appologized immediately after Jaco's death by doing the tune "Mr Pastorius" and covering "Teen Town"...But it was too late to save Jaco.... God always takes too talented people back to heaven too early... Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jaco Pastorius, Janis Joplin.... Its sad, but this is the fact....
    Very SAD fact.... :( :( :( :( :( :(
     
  10. djcruse

    djcruse

    Jun 3, 2002
    Norwood, MA
    Read the book with more than a few grains of salt. That is, to say the least, an unauthorized biography. Jaco's family didn't approve of the making of this book and they cite inaccuracies. Ingrid Pastorius has a web page dedicated to the topic at: http://jacop.net/book.html

    If you've read the book, you should check this out.
     
  11. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Anyone else find it kind of shocking how inaccurate that biography is? I mean...jeez. There are some terribly glaring inaccuracies mentioned there.
     
  12. So, what happened to the bouncer? Did he get locked up, or did they let him walk?
     
  13. The best site would be his family's(see below):
    They definately do not agree with all of Milkowski's accounts.

    http://www.jacop.net

    Bill Milkowski's book has a number of inaccuracies.
    Simply to be fair, and to be more precise, I hereby
    dispel some of which is untrue, and inappropriate...

    ...seen strictly through my eyes:

    I first met Bill very briefly at Jaco's wake.
    Some say he had been interviewing.

    My second, and last meeting with Bill was after
    the first version of his book had come out in Japan.
    He contacted me while in town fulfilling an assignment.

    During our one hour or so meeting in a hotel lobby, he
    informed me of his project to do an English version of the book,
    hence the decision to have a first hand conversation with me.
    After the meeting, he sent us 2 copies of the Japanese rendition.

    The next time I heard from Milkowski was after Miller Freeman 's
    office had called for photos, and I had declined. The draft of the book
    they had sent for me to review, per my request, had left me saddened.
    In addition, I observed several erroneous statements, some quite painful.

    Regardless, Bill Milkowski has done bodies of important work, and
    the mere existence of this book is significant...
    thus, on behalf of others as well,
    thank you Bill,
    thank you Miller Freeman,
    and thank you Bass Player.

    Though the book has documented some valid accounts of
    Jaco's erratic behavior, it largely depicts the last grueling
    years of his life, which is the period the author acquainted him.

    Milkowski's delivery lacked the sensitivity of how different Jaco was.
    What seemed to many as being out of the norm, even unacceptable,
    was merely an intelligent man, pushing the limits of individuality.

    Jaco wore his heart on his sleeve...

    I believe some of his antics were purely out
    of frustration of being misunderstood. Clearly his
    actions are not common, but from my perspective,
    he initially only wanted to have simple fun.
    He lived to give of himself through his music,
    assuming his role as a conduit for a higher power.

    The alcohol and drug abuse, a form of self-medicating,
    which sadly happens to be the way of the world,
    especially in the music business, intensified
    the chemical imbalance he endured.

    My attempt here to set some records straight
    focuses on what hits home for me, though admittedly,
    Jaco was responsible for some of Bill's misconceptions.
    By no means do I condone all of Jaco's actions.

    Thankfully,
    we all have our own perceptions
    of ourselves, of others,
    and how others see us...

    Bill Milkowski's book:
    Though the book has documented some valid accounts of
    Jaco's erratic behavior, it largely depicts the last grueling
    years of his life, which is the period the author acquainted him.

    Milkowski's delivery lacked the sensitivity of how different Jaco was.
    What seemed to many as being out of the norm, even unacceptable,
    was merely an intelligent man, pushing the limits of individuality.

    Jaco wore his heart on his sleeve...

    I believe some of his antics were purely out
    of frustration of being misunderstood. Clearly his
    actions are not common, but from my perspective,
    he initially only wanted to have simple fun.
    He lived to give of himself through his music,
    assuming his role as a conduit for a higher power.

    The alcohol and drug abuse, a form of self-medicating,
    which sadly happens to be the way of the world,
    especially in the music business, intensified
    the chemical imbalance he endured.

    My attempt here to set some records straight
    focuses on what hits home for me, though admittedly,
    Jaco was responsible for some of Bill's misconceptions.
    By no means do I condone all of Jaco's actions.

    Thankfully,
    we all have our own perceptions
    of ourselves, of others,
    and how others see us...

    ==============================
    There's plenty of good reading, and I'd rather take the family's
    word over anyone else's.
     
  14. Tash

    Tash

    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    He got several years for manslaughter.

    Knowing what I do about bipolar disorders (being diagnosed with a simillar condition myself) its actually very easy to see why people turned their backs on Jaco. Its like there are two versions of you and you never which one is running the show at any given moment. One of me is a great guy with a briallant mind, lots of musical talent and a great sense of humor. The other is a violently suicidal a$$hole. Eventually people get tired of the flip side no matter how much they love the rest of you.

    Reading about how Jaco went down hill is really chilling for me, because I've been close to the same level myself. I've lost jobs, cars, houses and a wife because I was doing things that made perfect sense to me at the time but were in reality horribly unhealthy and destructive. I can easily see how I might have ended up homeless and wandering around ripped on drugs and alcohol had my family not stepped in and helped me get treatment.

    Unfortunatly there wasn't much that could be done in Jaco's case. Things are different now, the medical world has a much better grasp on how these conditions work and how to treat them, but even with the best of care bipolar disorders are difficult to diagnose and treat.

    In the 1980s the only solution was to lock people up and dose them on thorazine and lithium until they couldn't do anything but watch TV. Jaco refused to go that route, instead he tried to do the same thing with coke and JD. Trying to "self medicate" is actually a common response among bipolar patients, and it that rarely has a happy ending. In Jaco's case it caught up with him when he ticked off the wrong person and got beaten into a coma.
     
  15. Phunky

    Phunky Guest

    Aug 1, 2004
    Sweden
    BTW What year was Modern Electric Bass with Jaco recorded?
     
  16. oldfclefer

    oldfclefer low ended

    May 5, 2005
    Southern Ohio
    Jaco died due to a misunderstanding. The account that I read in Rolling Stone years ago said that Jaco had been invited to sit in with the band that was playing at the club. When he got to the stage door the bouncer saw an unwashed man in a tank top and blue jeans with greasy hair. Jaco wasn't one to dress up. When he told Jaco to go away, J. became confrontational and in the resultant fistfight the bouncer delivered a fatal beating. Tragic end to one of the giants in creative bass.
    A lot of attention has been paid to Jaco's death leaving behind the considerable contribution of his lifetime. I think the work he did with Joni Mitchell and Weather Report is some of the finest bass I've heard by anyone ever.
     
  17. Mike McGibney

    Mike McGibney Not impossible ... Inevitable

    Apr 13, 2005
    Essex, UK.
    Phunky: I think it was around 1985. Jaco was actually living on the street at the time. They got him in and cleaned up, off the drugs and alcohol and recorded the video. However, he went downhill a while after.
     
  18. zombywoof5050

    zombywoof5050

    Dec 20, 2001
    However much time he may have gotten sentenced, he only served four months..one month for each child that he left fatherless :(
     
  19. Jonki

    Jonki I will not slap my Bee!

    Oct 14, 2003
    Arendal, Norway
    didnt jacos family help him? and why would he live on the streets?
     
  20. barebones

    barebones Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2005
    Denver, CO
    Jaco's DEAD?! When the hell did this happen?!

    I'm joking, of course.

    Matt