R&B and Jazz giant Roy Hargrove dies at 49

(November 3, 2018) It is always sad for us to report deaths, but this one is particularly painful because it is someone so talented, so young, and so loved for the person he was. Roy Hargrove, a giant performer who took his trumpet into the nooks and corners of R&B, jazz and hip-hop where few others would trod, has died at age 49 after an extended illness. Hargrove had been on kidney dialysis for years, but was continuing to work until just a few weeks ago.

Hargrove won a Grammy Award in 2003 for his album Directions In Music, but his too-short career was most notable for its breadth and consistent excellence, for his solo work, his groups RH Factor and Crisol, and his generous collaborations with other artists.

(November 3, 2018) It is always sad for us to report deaths, but this one is particularly painful because it is someone so talented, so young, and so loved for the person he was. Roy Hargrove, a giant performer who took his trumpet into the nooks and corners of R&B, jazz and hip-hop where few others would trod, has died at age 49 after an extended illness. Hargrove had been on kidney dialysis for years, but was continuing to work until just a few weeks ago.

Hargrove won a Grammy Award in 2003 for his album Directions In Music, but his too-short career was most notable for its breadth and consistent excellence, for his solo work, his groups RH Factor and Crisol, and his generous collaborations with other artists.

Hargrove was born in Texas, and spent virtually his entire life playing. He went to the world renowned New School in New York for college, and soon became a staple in the New York jazz clubs. He released his debut album at age 21, and soon he was recording with such giants as Herbie Hancock, Stanley Turrentine, Christian McBride and Branford Marsalis.

R&B fans may have first heard of Hargrove when he helped create the now legendary album Voodoo with D’Angelo. He went on to work on the hip-hop and R&B side with Erykah Badu, Common and Nile Rodgers. Those collaborations opened up new audiences to Hargrove, who amazed them with his solo albums and his work with RH Factor. We covered many of his albums on SoulTracks, and simply ran out of superlatives.

This is a huge loss to the music world, and we will be mourning, even as we listen to 2006’s brilliant Distractions as yet another reminder of Roy Hargrove’s brilliance. Rest in peace, Mr. Hargrove.

By Chris Rizik

Thanks to SoulTracker Ella for letting us know.

Picture By Ice Boy Tell - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

 
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