Bass Legend Jaco Pastorius’ Documentary to Premiere in Syracuse

The Palace Theater in Syracuse is the place to be this Black Friday, Nov. 27, with the premiere of the new Jaco Pastorius documentary, JACO, at 8 p.m. (doors at 7).

Not only that, the Sound Garden in Armory Square will host a DVD release event at 2 p.m. that will feature the film’s executive producer, Robert Trujillo, world-renowned bassist from Metallica and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame member. There will be a signing opportunity and an exclusive limited edition of the JACO DVD packaged with a CD of music from the film, interspersed with Jaco’s voice and a track from Trujillo’s Mass Mental project.

Trujillo, who is known world-wide, didn’t pick-up a bass until he heard Pastorius play. While his own playing took a different path, the flamboyant Pastorius had his influences on him and many, many other bassists including Flea and Sting, to name just a few. Pastorius was larger than life and a iconic player — he may well have changed the direction of modern music single-handedly.

The day marks the official world-wide DVD release of JACO, and the two events have much traction behind the tour de force of Sound Garden GM Eric Brush, Syracuse Jazz Fest founder Frank Malfitano, The Palace Theater GM Paul Valenti and The Syracuse International Film Festival founder Owen Shapiro and Executive Director Mike Massurin. The organizers stated, “This Northeast National Premiere screening of the JACO documentary in Syracuse is a ground-breaking event that has come together because music, film, locally-based arts, cultural organizations and institutions have come to recognize the value that this kind of collaboration can bring to the community.”

left to right: Christine (Owen) Shapiro and Mike Massurin/ Syracuse International Film Fest, Frank Malfitano/ Syracuse Jazz Fest Sound Garden GM/ Host Eric Brush.

Brush met Trujillo a few years ago at the N.A.M.M. convention, where they discussed indie record stores and the movie; this is what led Sound Garden to be selected as location for the DVD release. Out of all independent stores, nationwide! The event is also giving a big nod to Record Store Day, another incredible get for Brush and The Sound Garden. Malfitano’s long history with The Jaco Pastorius Big Band and the Pastorius family made him a natural, so much so that he was invited to be master of ceremonies at Jaco’s 20th Anniversary Celebration at The Broward Center of The Performing Arts. Add to them the cache of The Syracuse International Film Festival and the beautiful Palace Theater, and the team was complete.

JACO is produced by Robert Trujillo in association with Passion Pictures (Searching For Sugar Man, Project Nim), and the film is co-directed by Paul Marchand and Stephen Kijak. Together they tell the remarkable and tragic tale of Pastorius’ much too short life with never-seen-before 8mm film, photos and audio recordings including exclusive material from the Pastorius family archive.

This may well be the only big-screen viewing of JACO, ever. Do not miss out. Even better, go to the DVD Release Event at The Sound Garden, buy a DVD and get a free ticket to the screening later that evening! (This offer stands for the first 200 people taking advantage of it only.) This guarantees you a seat because the screening is FREE, yes, free, but there is limited seating. Trujillo will not only be at the signing event, he will introduce the film at The Palace Theater as well.

More info available at The Palace Theater’s website and The Sound Garden website.

Photography: Sandra Jackson/ Sublunar Studios

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