We mourn the passing of legendary soul and jazz great Onaje Allan Gumbs

(April 7, 2020) This week is unfortunately starting the way last week ended, as we bid a sad goodbye today to legendary pianist, bandleader and songwriter Onaje Allan Gumbs. Gumbs, (born Allan Bentley Gumbs) was a noted jazz sideman for many years, working with the likes of Thad Jones and Kenny Burrell, September 3, 1949 - April 6, 2020) was a New York-based pianist, composer, and bandleader. And he was also a master behind the scenes, working with many of the greatest popular artists of the last 50 years.

(April 7, 2020) This week is unfortunately starting the way last week ended, as we bid a sad goodbye today to legendary pianist, bandleader and songwriter Onaje Allan Gumbs. Gumbs, (born Allan Bentley Gumbs) was a noted jazz sideman for many years, working with the likes of Thad Jones and Kenny Burrell, September 3, 1949 - April 6, 2020) was a New York-based pianist, composer, and bandleader. And he was also a master behind the scenes, working with many of the greatest popular artists of the last 50 years.

Gumbs released his first album, Onaje, in 1976 to critical acclaim. It began a slow string of albums over the next three decades, each of which was highly regarded in jazz circles. But perhaps his greatest influence was his work as pianist or arranger for a virtual “who’s who” of jazz and R&B artists. Every SoulTracks readers has heard his work via the seminal work of stars such as Phyllis Hyman, Norman Connors, Joe, Angela Johnson, Will Downing, Gerald Albright and countless others.

He also spent a great amount of time working with young musicians, both informally and through several noted music schools around the country where he lent his talent.

While not a household name, Onaje Allan Gumbs had a profound influence on two generations of stars and albums that have become part of the soul music canon. We thank him and mourn his loss.

 
Choice Cut - Maysa - "Lovin' You Is Easy"

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