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Jaco Pastorius Jaco Pastorius

”Jaco” was born John Francis Pastorius III, the first of three sons born to John Francis Pastorius II and Stephanie Katherine Haapala Pastorius. He had Finnish, German, Swedish, and Irish ancestry. Although “Jaco” was born in Norristown, Pennsylvania, the family subsequently moved to Fort Lauderdale. Jaco went to elementary and middle school at St. Clement's Catholic School in Wilton Manors, and he was an altar boy at the adjoining church. He went to high school at Northeast High in Oakland Park. He was a talented athlete with skills in football, basketball, and baseball, and he picked up music at an early age. He took the name “Anthony” at his confirmation.

He loved basketball, and often watched basketball with his father, whose nickname was “Jack.” Jaco's nickname was influenced by his love of sports and also by the umpire Jocko Conlan. He changed the spelling from “Jocko” to “Jaco” after the pianist Alex Darqui sent him a note. Darqui, who was French, assumed the name was spelled “Jaco”; “Jaco” liked the new spelling.

Originally a drummer, following in the footsteps of his father, stand-up drummer Jack Pastorius, “Jaco” switched to bass at age 15, after suffering an injury to his wrist. In about 1970, he began playing in a nine-piece horn band at the time called Las Olas Brass, which covered popular material of the day by Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, James Brown and the Tijuana Brass.

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Album Truth, Liberty & Soul: Live in NYC The Complete 1982 Jazz Alive!... by Jaco Pastorius

Truth, Liberty &...

Resonance Records

Album Jaco Pastorius by Jaco Pastorius

Jaco Pastorius


Album Jaco: Original Soundtrack by Jaco Pastorius

Jaco: Original...

Legacy Recordings

Album Anthology by Jaco Pastorius



Album Jaco Pastorius: Modern American Music…Period! The Criteria Sessions by Jaco Pastorius

Jaco Pastorius:...

Omnivore Recordings

Album Word of Mouth by Jaco Pastorius

Word of Mouth

Warner Bros.




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