Jaco Pastorius – Holiday for Pans (1993)

Holiday for Pans‘ is the title of the third studio album by legendary American jazz fusion bassist Jaco Pastorius which was posthumously released in 1993 through Sound Hills. The album was recorded long before its year of release, during the early 1980s, more specifically between 1980 and 1982. The LP was recorded at three different studios in New York City and was initially intended to be the follow-up to ‘Word of Mouth‘ (1981), Jaco’s second solo studio album.

‘Holiday for Pans’ by Jaco Pastorius (1993), frontal cover artwork. Image source: www.open.spotify.com

Warner Bros. (the label with which Jaco had previously worked with for his solo career during the early 1980s) rejected the release of ‘Holiday for Pans’ on the grounds that the album sounded too esoteric given Othello Molineaux’s contributions on steel drum. Furthermore, Trinidadian and Tobagonian percussionist Othello Molineaux was a long time collaborator of Jaco Pastorius. With the unjustly rejection of Warner Bros. Jaco eventually spent his last years trying to find another label which would be willing to release his third record but to no avail very much unfortunately.

Subsequently, the studio recordings were left in the possession of sound engineer Kenny Jackel who, as opposed to what Jaco Pastorius’ family wanted, sold the respective studio recordings to Japanese label Sound Hills which later on released the album in 1993.

To this day, ‘Holiday for Pans’ hasn’t been released in the United States, but the official Jaco Pastorius website recognizes the album as part of Jaco’s solo discography, as it can be clearly seen here. The album includes contributions from former Weather Report bandmates Wayne Shorter (saxophone) and Don Alias as well harmonica from Belgian virtuoso Toots Thielemans and orchestration by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra. It is very interesting to note that The Penguin Guide to Jazz considers ‘Holiday for Pans’ as ‘by far the most imaginative project Pastorius ever undertook‘.

The tracklist of the album is as follows:

  1. Mysterious Mountain (written by Alan Hovhaness);
  2. Elegant People (written by Wayne Shorter);
  3. Good Morning Anya (written by Jaco Pastorius);
  4. She’s Leaving Home (written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney);
  5. Holiday For Pans (based on ‘Holiday for Strings’ and written by David Rose);
  6. Giant Steps (written by John Coltrane);
  7. City of Angels (written by Jaco Pastorius);
  8. Birth of Island (written by Jaco Pastorius).

The main personnel was the following one:

  • Jaco Pastorius – electric bass, steel drums (bass pan), percussion, keyboards, vocals
  • Othello Molineaux – steel drums/steel tongue drums

Additional personnel included the following:

  • Don Alias – percussion;
  • Trompa Choier – choir;
  • Kenwood Dennard – drums;
  • Bobby Economou – drums and percussion;
  • Mike Gerber – piano;
  • Michael Gibbs – orchestration;
  • Peter Graves – trombone;
  • Ted Lewand – guitar;
  • Wayne Shorter – saxophone;
  • Craig Thayler – violin;
  • Toots Thielemans – harmonica;
  • Leroy Williams – additional steel drums.

Therefore, that being said and without any further needless ado, hereby the entire album embedded via Youtube. Enjoy and all the best!

Documentation sources and external link:

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