July 2, 2003 by

Herbie Mann

1 comment

Categories: Musicians

hmann.jpgHerbie Mann, a seminal jazz flutist who fused his music with Brazilian, Eastern European and African sounds and released more than 100 albums, died on July 1 of prostate cancer. He was 73.
Although he studied the clarinet and saxophone as a child, Mann chose the flute as his preferred instrument. His musical career began at 14 when he played in groups at resorts in the Catskill Mountains.
For a few years, Mann played with the Army Band, touring in Italy, France and Scandinavia. After returning to New York, Mann added a conga player to his group, and launched a popular run in Latin music circles. But it was his visits to Africa and Brazil in the 1960s that brought new sounds to his work.
In the 1970s, Mann released “Memphis Underground,” a founding recording of fusion. When he left Atlantic Records and launched his own label, Kokopelli, he spent a year and a half working on 12 recordings, including “Peace Pieces,” his tribute to the music of Bill Evans. Mann took a brief side jaunt into disco and then returned to performing jazz with fusion sounds in the ’80s and ’90s.
Mann’s last live concert was May 3 at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, where he received a five minute standing ovation.

One Response to Herbie Mann

  1. Kelvin

    I saw Herbie Mann in 1975 at the Arlington in Santa Barbara. I won the tickets on a local radio station. I heard jazz for the first time, but it was not until I was older that I appreciated that flute. I was only 15 at the concert; I and was going through my heavy metal stage. Now at 43, I find myself listening to Herbie Mann and apprciating his talent. Ian Andersen (Jethro Tull) and Herbie Mann are two of the great flute players of our time.

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