Watch a blip of his signature tune “Mumbles,” below.
By Blurt Staff
Described by the New York Times as “one of the most popular and influential jazz trumpeters of his generation and an enthusiastic advocate of jazz education,” Clark Terry passed away yesterday (Feb. 21) at the age of 94, for reasons not yet disclosed. It’s known that he had experienced health problems starting in the late 1990s.
Proficient in both trumpet and flugelhorn, he was a veteran session player as well as a featured performer for Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Quincy Jones’ big bands and orchestras, and he recorded with a who’s-who of jazz legends, among them Mingus, Monk, Gary Mulligan and Oscar Peterson. He also became known to the general public via Doc Severinson’s Tonight Show band starting in the ’60s.
The Times obit comments on Terry’s work in jazz education, noting that he appeared “at high school and college clinics, writing jazz instruction books and running a summer jazz camp. He was an adviser to the International Association of Jazz Educators and chairman of the academic council of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. For many years he was also an adjunct professor at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J., to which he donated his archive of instruments, sheet music, correspondence and memorabilia in 2004.”
The recipient of numerous jazz awards, including as recently as 2010 when the Recording Academy gave him a lifetime achievement award, he also penned an autobiography, Clark, in 2011.