Bassline Academy – Come on Come Over, Jaco Pastorius

Come on Come Over is the second track on Jaco Pastorius’ album called ‘Jaco Pastorius’! It’s a great album which takes you on a proper musical journey and is really well put together – if you haven’t heard it check it out, it’s been a firm favourite of mine for many years. Come on Come Over is one of the full on funky tracks with the horn section featuring amongst others the Brecker Brothers, David Sanborn and the great Howard Johnson (also of jazz tuba fame) on baritone sax.

This track is a great example of Jaco’s melodic bass craft. He’s never just keeping time or outlining the harmony but playing long arching melodic phrases that are spellbinding. In essence the piece has just 2 sections. The bass line in the A section, which sits on C minor with a couple of ascending chromatic semi runs, stays rock solid the same all the way through the track.

The B section steps up a tone to D major. The bassline loosely follows the example on the left with Jaco continually embellishing the phrase in his own characteristic way throughout the tune. The way he plays makes it sound like there’s nearly always continual semiquaver movement in the bass, but listen closely and there’s actually a fair bit of space in his lines (well, in the first two B sections at least, he does let his hair down a bit in the last one!). Jaco’s note placement is impeccable and it’s his interaction with everything else that’s going on in the band that gives the feel of perpetual motion.

Click here to download a full transcription of Jaco’s bassline in Come on Come Over.

This may not be the most obvious track to try on tuba but I love this tight funky kind of thing so here goes!