Jazz Great Freddie Hubbard Dies

Published December 30, 2008

Jazz great Freddie Hubbard, one of the most influential trumpeters of his generation, died Monday, about a month after suffering a heart attack. He was 70.

Hubbard was pronounced dead at Sherman Oaks Hospital, fellow trumpeter David Weiss told The Associated Press. Hubbard, who earned a Grammy in 1972 for “First Light,” made more than 300 recordings, including such notable discs as “Open Sesame” and “Going Up” for Blue Note. He was best known for his aggressive, articulate style.

Born in Indianapolis, Hubbard studied at the Arthur Jordan Conservatory of Music and the Indianapolis Symphony before heading to New York in 1958. Once in New York, he joined forces with Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley and John Coltrane, among other jazz legends.

He once told Down Beat magazine that, "I met Trane at a jam session at Count Basie's in Harlem in 1958. He said, `Why don't you come over and let's try and practice a little bit together.' I almost went crazy. I mean, here is a 20-year-old kid practicing with John Coltrane. He helped me out a lot, and we worked several jobs together."

One of the musicians greatly influenced by Hubbard is fellow Grammy-Award winner Wynton Marsalis.

"He influenced all the trumpet players that came after him," Marsalis told The Associated Press earlier this year. "Certainly I listened to him a lot. ... We all listened to him. He has a big sound and a great sense of rhythm and time and really the hallmark of his playing is an exuberance. His playing is exuberant."

Written by From Staff & Wire Services

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