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The Life of Jaco Pastorius

December 1, 1951: John Francis III born in Norristown, PA, to Jack and Stephanie Pastorius.

September 1959: Family moves to Fort Lauderdale, FL.

September 1963: Begins playing drums with the Sonics, a local comboband.

Summer 1966: Joins Las Olas Brass as a drummer.

Summer 1967: Switches to bass guitar.

January 1972: Joins Wayne Cochran & the C. C. Riders

Spring 1973: Begins teaching part-time at the University of Miami. Students include Mark Egan, Frank Gravas, and Hiram Bullock.

Summer 1974: Records a blues album, Party Down, with Little Beaver, and a jazz album with pianist Paul Bley, guitarist Pat Metheny and drummer Bruce Ditimas.

1975: Records Jaco Pastorius, plays Pat Metheny's Bright Size Life and two cuts of Weather Report's Black Market.

1976: Joins Weather Report, plays and co-produces on Heavy Weather. Also appears on Joni Mitchell's Hejira.

1980: Records Word of Mouth in Fort Lauderdale.

1982: Leaves Weather Report and tours with his Word of Mouth Big Band.

1983: Warner Bros. releases Invitation, a selection of live tracks from '82 concerts in Japan. Tours with a sextet that includes guitarist Mike Stern.

1984 :Forms trio with guitarist Hiram Bullock and drummer Kenwood Dennard.

September 1985: Arrested in Philadelphia for trying to break into his father's house. Voluntarily enters rehabilitation center.

March 1986: Tours with guitarist Bireli Lagrene. Live album, Stuttgart Aria, is released on a German label, Jazzpoint.

July 1986: Commited to psychiatric ward at New York's Bellevue Hospital, where he is diagnosed as manic depressive and placed on medication.

October 1986: Leaves Bellevue and flies to San Francisco, where he stays with drummer Brian Melvin and records several tracks.

December 1986: Returns to Florida. Begins an excercise program and plays with guitarist Randy Bernsen.

February 1987: Starts to self-destruct, drinking heavily and sleeping in parks. Crashes gigs and demands to sit in.

Summer 1987: Bizarre behavior continues. Arrested for various charges, including drunk and disorderly, driving without a license, and shoplifting. After hearing of the deaths of two childhood friends, goes into deep depression and stops taking his medication.

September 11, 1987: Jumps onstage during a Santana concert in Fort Lauderdale and is ushered off by stagehands that don't recognize him.

September 12, 1987: Early in the morning, he tries to crash an after-hours club and is beaten senseless. Rushed to Broward County Medical Center, where he lies in a coma.

September 21, 1987: Pronounced dead at 10:00pm. backbutt.gif (2193 bytes)