Jaco Pastorius Ultimate Bass Tone Tips

I recently read an excellent No Treble article called The Path To Jaco.

In it, Mike Frost, describes a lesson he had with Jaco Pastorius in 1984. He generously shares a video of a portion of the lesson and it's absolutely fascinating.

Jaco says a few things to Mike that we can all learn from:

  1. "One of the greatest insights that he gave me was to be aware of my right-hand pizzicato technique." 
  2. "He then showed me how to strike through the string and allow the finger to land the following string. It was completely mind-blowing as I listened to how my bass sound changed instantly from just from that one concept. That alone saved me years.  It added an incredible amount of foundation tone and bottom punch to the note."
  3. He repeats the words: "Take your time."

Read that last point again.

Do just that...

Don't rush. Give yourself time to build up your technique and to develop as a bass player.

Obviously, the more time you can put in the better, but just be as consistent as you can and you'll see results.

Jaco Pastorius Bass Technique/Tone Exercise

The exercise itself is fairly simple (don't forget to swing those 1/8th notes).

You can add some spice to the exercise by adding in some of the shapes in the PDF:

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