Joe Zawinul dead
2007-09-11 by Nick Butler EMERITUS | 12 Comments

Jazz keyboardist Joe Zawinul, famed for his tenure in Weather Report and work with Miles Davis on such classic albums as In a Silent Way, Heavy Weather, and Bitches Brew, has died in Vienna. He was 75.

Zawinul is credited as a highly important figure in modern jazz. His work in the 70s, along with Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock, served to introduce the electric piano and the synthesizer to jazz's instrumental pallette, and move jazz into more electronic territory. He was also one of the key players at the start of fusion, with Weather Report becoming one of the most respected and important names in the genre.

Zawinul's big break in jazz came with his work with the Cannonball Adderley Quintet, a group he was a member of from 1961 to 1970. The exposure he recieved from his work with Adderley led to an invitation to work with Miles Davis - during his time with Davis, he composed "In A Silent Way" and "Pharoahe's Dance", both cornerstones of their respective albums. He then left Davis to form his own group, Weather Report, with Wayne Shorter; a group that both allowed Zawinul his greatest commercial success with his composition "Birdland", and saw him help introduce the then-unproven bass virtuoso Jaco Pastorious into the upper echelons of jazz. Later, he formed The Joe Zawinul Syndicate. His last act as a musician was a 20th anniversary tour of this band.

Details of his death are not yet known; however, the Wilhelmina Clinic have released a statement indicating that Zawinul died peacefully, having been in hospital fighting an as-yet-identified illness since last month.

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Comments:Add a Comment 
ValiumMan
September 11th 2007

493 Comments


He's a "countryman" of mine, so I know a little more about it. Apparently, he had a particularly rare form of skin cancer.

This is kind of sad, but he's had a pretty long life anyway and he did some awesome stuff. May he rest in peace.

JumpTheF**kUp
September 11th 2007

2710 Comments




Iai
Emeritus
September 11th 2007

3553 Comments


Now here's some weirdness for you - it was exactly 20 years ago today that Jaco Pastorius was put into the coma that killed him.

Mardy
September 11th 2007

36 Comments


"Sometimes, we cut short... mercy, mercy, mercy."

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
September 11th 2007

2806 Comments


Man

Fort23
September 11th 2007

2474 Comments


Good that he lived a while at least.
His work with Miles is probably his best-In a Silent Way is sooo good.

AmericnZero02
September 11th 2007

3329 Comments


R.I.P. Joe


(nice avatar sonic)

Yield
September 11th 2007

626 Comments


NO!!! JOE!

man, this sucks

Iai
Emeritus
September 11th 2007

3553 Comments


'Classic' isn't a matter of personal preference. I also hate Sgt. Peppers, Nevermind, White Light/White Heat, and everything by Mozart, but that doesn't stop them being hugely important, well-loved, eternally enduring works.

dudeinthepassinglane
September 12th 2007

192 Comments


In A Silent Way and Bitches Brew were INARGUABLY jazz classics, sorry. They were THE first fusion albums. Fusion had not been done before.

It's too bad... Yet another jazz great dead... Soon there won't be any left. Sonny Rollins is proly next.

Iai
Emeritus
September 12th 2007

3553 Comments


In A Silent Way and Bitches Brew were INARGUABLY jazz classics, sorry. They were THE first fusion albums. Fusion had not been done before.

Precisely my point. I may not be able to stomach listening to Bitches Brew, but I can't even begin to argue the point that it's a classic.

In A Silent Way, on the other hand, is awesome.

faultandfracture
October 18th 2007

28 Comments


this made me very sad. talented, talented man.



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