Recorded live at the Santa Barbara County Bowl, September 1979, Joni Mitchell once again assembles an incredible band – Pat Metheny on guitar, Lyle Mays on keyboards, Michael Brecker on sax, Don Alias on drums, and of course, Jaco on bass. The band plays Joni’s songs with renewed energy, each bringing their own unique sound. This concert was also available on video.
Charles Mingus had called upon Joni Mitchell in the last months of his life to work on a musical version of T.S. Elliot’s Four Quartets, a project which ultimately was scrapped but served as the catalyst to Joni’s “Mingus” album. Initial recordings for this album were done with other musicians, but Joni settled upon an all-star cast of Jaco on bass, along with Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Peter Erskine, Don Alias and others. Sadly, Mingus died before this album was completed.
Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter was released in 1977 as a double-LP, once again featuring Jaco’s lengendary bass work. Bringing in a group of jazz players such as Larry Carlton and Wayne Shorter, the album consists of many improvisational tracks. Shortly after the release of this album, Joni was contacted by Charles Mingus, which eventually led to her next album, Mingus.
Regarded by many to be the best Joni/Jaco collaboration, Hejira showcases Jaco’s lyrical bass lines along the same lines as “Continuum” and Zawinul’s “A Remark You Made”. This album was released the same year as Jaco’s solo album and many others he performed on with other artists, and was the first of four he performed on with Joni.