Although many of the icons that Quincy Jones has worked with are gone - Michael Jackson, Ray Charles, Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra - Reuters reports that the 27 time Grammy award winner is showing no signs of retiring. “I’ll slow down when I die,” said the 78-year-old television producer, film composer and activist when he was interviewed in the Moroccan capital Rabat where he appeared in the Mawazine music festival.
The former Oscar award show producer says that he still has a lot of energy and he wants to see people come together across the barriers. His latest project is the launch of a joint venture to promote music in North Africa and the Middle East where musicians from different cultures will work together. Jones told Reuters that he feels an affinity for Arabs as they have often suffered from prejudice like American blacks.
Jones, a master chameleon, has changed with times transitioning over the years from bebop and big band jazz to pop and hip-hop. He produced Michael Jackson’s first solo album “Off the Wall” which sold over 8 million copies and made him the most sought after producer in Hollywood. Later in his career he sat at the helm of a company that created Vibe and the strictly hip-hop magazine Blaze.