Grammy winning jazz musician Freddie Hubbard died Monday (December 29) in a suburb of Los Angeles, a month after suffering a heart attack. He was 70 years old.
According to the Associated Press, the jazz trumpeter died at Sherman Oaks Hospital, after suffering a heart attack just before Thanksgiving.
As a musician, Hubbard contributed to hundreds of recordings in a career dating to 1958, the year he arrived in New York from his hometown Indianapolis. In Indianapolis, he studied at the Arthur Jordan Conservatory of Music and with the Indianapolis Symphony.
Over the years, he collaborated with such greats as Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane and Sonny Rollins, and even played with other jazz legends such as Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, and Cannonball Adderley.
“I met Trane at a jam session at Count Basie’s in Harlem in 1958,” Hubbard told jazz magazine, Down Beat, in 1995, reports the AP. “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.”
He went on to play on more than 300 recordings, including some of the most important jazz albums of the 1960s — including Herbie Hancock’s “Maiden Voyage,” Coleman’s “Free Jazz,” Eric Dolphy’s “Out to Lunch,” Coltrane’s “Ascension,” Wayne Shorter’s “Speak No Evil” and his own classic, “Ready for Freddie.”
Over the last decade, Hubbard released New Colors in 2001 and On The Real Side in 2008, both with the New Jazz Composers Octet playing updated arrangements of some of his compositions.
His most recent achievement came in 2006, when he was named a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master, the nation’s highest jazz honor.
According to the AP, a memorial tribute is planned for next month in New York.