Jaco Pastorius: Musicians Institute Master Class

A little over a year ago, Musicians Institute discovered a video in their vault of Jaco Pastorius’s appearance during a master class, which took place in the mid-80’s. They recently posted the entire video, where Jaco fielded questions from students.

“Despite the glitchy video, the bassist’s signature sound rings loud [and] clear as he unveils the secrets of his virtuosity in this once-in-a-lifetime ,” Musicians Institute shared.

Jeff Berlin is also seen in the clip, sharing his thoughts along the way – with the two bassists showing a lot of mutual respect.

One of the comments I saw on the video (from a person who said he was in the audience) indicated that Jaco didn’t bring a bass to the event, but borrowed one from one of the students in attendance.

The video includes a lot of great insight into Jaco’s approach to the instrument, his views on the music industry, some playing, and more. The video closes with a jam with Jaco, guitarist Frank Gambale and drummer Patrick Buchmann.

What a gem!

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Share your thoughts

  1. Craig Burns

    Thank you for posting and sharing. We live in a world today where there are 100’s if not 1000’s of hours of footage of anyone you can think of. There is so little of this genius in comparison that everything Jaco related is such a treasure.

  2. Dave

    July 10, 1985. He did his instructional video in September of that year.

  3. Michael Hamer

    Thanks for sharing this video! It’s come to the point in time when Jaco has become an almost mythical entity. Posting these videos gives the young folks a chance to see that he was great and that he really existed!

  4. Magnus

    What a little jem! Thanks MI and notreble!

  5. TR

    it’s true, he’d just got in from NYC – said he had none of his gear with him. I also remember him briefly playing one of our classmates fretless jazz bass’s which had it’s pick guard (quite cleverly) cut out from the Kellogs Corn Flake box and perfectly affixed.. After it was all over , he signed my real book with an intense look in his eye…I couldn’t hold eye contact . I’ll never forget. I was there also .