Jazz Keyboardist George Duke Dies At 67

Notable Deaths 2013


(CBS SF/AP) – A representative said Grammy-winning jazz keyboardist and producer George Duke, whose sound infused acoustic jazz, electronic jazz, funk, R&B and soul, has died. He was 67.

The representative said Duke died Monday night in Los Angeles. He was being treated for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

During his 40-year-plus career, the San Rafael-born Duke appeared on a number of Frank Zappa’s albums and played in the Don Ellis Orchestra and Cannonball Adderley’s band. He played keyboard on Michael Jackson’s multiplatinum 1979 album, “Off the Wall,” and was a producer for Miles Davis, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, Dionne Warwick and Natalie Cole.

He also released more than 30 solo albums. He released his final album, “DreamWeaver,” on July 16, debuting at No. 1 on Billboard’s contemporary jazz chart. “I think musicians are really the weavers of dreams,” Duke said of the album in a recent video for Concord Records. “That’s why I wanted this album to be called ‘DreamWeaver’ because we start with nothing. The album starts with just a sound. And from that sound things begin to developed and nobody knows what’s going to happen and then it ends up being a song…We’re the weavers are dreams of ideas.”

Duke’s wife, Corine, died from cancer last year.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco and Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2014/02/19/playboy-jazz-festival-to-celebrate-george-duke/ Playboy Jazz Festival To Celebrate George Duke « CBS San Francisco

    […] Playboy opener and was a frequent participant in the Los Angeles area’s biggest jazz event. Duke, 67, died of leukemia last August shortly after releasing his chart-topping contemporary jazz CD “Dreamweaver,” which […]

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