Seven-time GRAMMY-winning singer AL JARREAU died FEB. 12th at a LOS ANGELES hospital, the WASHINGTON POST reports. The singer, whose vocal style blurred the lines between jazz, soul and pop music, was 76. While his publicist, JOE GORDON, said the singer had been treated for exhaustion, the cause of death has not been announced.
Born MARCH 12th, 1940, in MILWAUKEE, JARREAU’s eclectic style was polished through years of obscure apprenticeship in nightclubs. He did not release his first album until 1975, when he was 35, but within two years he had won the first of his seven GRAMMY Awards and had begun to attract a wide following. He became known as the “Acrobat of Scat” for his quick, wordless syllables of bebop jazz musicians, and he had a particular gift for mimicking almost any kind of musical instrument or sound. “JARREAU imitates the electronic and percussive hardware of the 1970s,” critic ROBERT PALMER wrote in ROLLING STONE in 1979. “But he does more than that. He stands there and makes it all sound natural, singing so sweetly and unaffectedly you’d think he just happened on this remarkable vocal vocabulary.”
Survivors include his wife of 39 years, SUSAN PLAYER; and a son from his second marriage.