Jazz legend and seven-time Grammy winner Al Jarreau has died at the age of 76. He passed Sunday morning at 5:30 am in Los Angeles. His passing comes two days after an announcement was made on his website that he was retiring from touring due to exhaustion and slowly recovering in a Los Angeles hospital.
Alwin Lopez “Al” Jarreau was a Milwaukee, Wisconsin native and received a lifetime achievement award from the foundation last fall, and an endowment to benefit Milwauke Public School children needing financial assistance for music programs was established in his name.
Al Jarreau made his mark when he released his critically acclaimed debut album in 1976, We Got By, which catapulted him to international fame and garnered him a German Grammy Award. A second German Grammy would follow with the release of his second album, Glow.
One of Jarreau’s most commercially successful albums is Breakin’ Away (1981), which includes the hit song “We’re in This Love Together”. In 1984, his single “After All” reached 69 on the US Hot 100 chart and number 26 on the R&B chart.His last big hit was the Grammy-nominated theme to the 1980s American television show Moonlighting, for which he wrote the lyrics. Among other things, he was well known for his extensive use of scat singing, and vocal percussion. He was also a featured vocalist on USA for Africa’s “We Are the World” in which he sang the line, “…and so we all must lend a helping hand.” Another charitable media event, HBO’s Comic Relief, featured Al in a duet with Natalie Cole singing the song “Mr. President”.
Jarreau has 20 albums to his name, and is the only Grammy vocalist to win in the jazz, pop and R&B categories. Most Recently he performed 50 concerts last year, including at the White House.
Thank you for your contributions to the world and great music, you will missed but not forgotten.