For Immediate Release – GRAMMY® Award-winning keyboardist/composer/arranger/
George Duke has died in Los Angeles at age 67. He was battling and
being treated for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).
With almost a half a century career, Duke was one of the world’s most
prolific jazz legends. From leading a jazz trio with a young Al Jarreau
during his formative years to working with Jean-Luc Ponty, which
afforded Duke’s first recording contract with MPS Records and his first
exposure to Europe, to his incredible work with Cannonball Adderley,
drummer Billy Cobham, and Frank Zappa, to his cherished stream of
jazz-funk records in the ’70s, Duke found his mark not only in his
eclecticism, but also his signature approach to the synthesizer, which
often prized less pyrotechnics in favor of blues elements.
“We are all devastated by the sad news of George’s passing,” says Mark Wexler, General Manager of the Concord-Telarc Label Group. “He was a great man, a legendary, one-of-a-kind artist; and our hearts go out to his family. George will be missed by all.”
“The outpouring of love and support that we have received from my father’s friends, fans and the entire music community has been overwhelming,” says Rashid Duke, George’s son. “Thank you all for your concern, prayers and support.”
GEORGE and CORINE DUKE