Jaco - "Portrait of Tracy"

Fellow blogger and long-time "5" reader Carolina Gonzalez once stated that if one were to watch The Matrix much later and not when it was released, its numerous innovations would not seem as impressive, due to the film's subsequent and widespread influence.

The same could be said of legendary jazz musician Jaco Pastorius' solo bass tour de force, "Portrait of Tracy", from his 1976 self-titled debut [Columbia]. Luckily for us, we came across this gem, not then, but before many of Jaco's fellow electric bassists took to heart his example of expanding the vocabulary of the instrument. Needless to say, we were floored; its grace and beauty undiminished to this day.

Pastorius died in 1987 at the young age of 35, but left behind a significant body of work, as well as a legion of followers and admirers. Released when Jaco was just 24 years old, "Portrait of Tracy" is, arguably, his signature composition. And still breathtaking.