McCoy Tyner, one of the most distinctive and influential jazz pianists of the past 60 years who became best known for his work with John Coltrane’s legendary 1960s quartet, died at age 81.
“It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of jazz legend Alfred “McCoy” Tyner,” his family wrote in a statement. “McCoy was an inspired musician who devoted his life to his art, his family and his spirituality. McCoy Tyner’s music and legacy will continue to inspire fans and future talent for generations to come.”
Tyner recorded dozens of albums as a leader from the early Sixties through 2009, and appeared on classic LPs by Joe Henderson, Wayne Shorter, and Freddie Hubbard, but his tenure in Coltrane’s so-called “classic quartet” of the early-to-mid-Sixties — the band heard on iconic albums such as A Love Supreme, Crescent, and Live at the Village Vanguard, made him a star. His bluesy, insistent style anchored the group’s rhythm section and provided the perfect foil for Coltrane’s adventurous flights on tenor and soprano sax.
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