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Jazz musician Horace Silver has died at 85

It’s a sad day for music with news that legendary jazz composer and pianist, Horace Silver, has passed on.

Horace Silver’s son Gregory announced that his father passed away Wednesday morning at the age of 85, according to NPR. The legendary musician died of natural causes.

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Silver, who was born in Connecticut and moved to New York in the 1950s, was a pioneer pianist and composer who branded his own rhythmic jazz style that was a blend of R&B and gospel known as “hard bop.” During the course of his career, Silver performed with other musical legends Stan Getz, Miles Davis, Lester Young and Art Blakey.

In February 2005, Silver received the Presidential Merit Award at the Grammys, according to his official website, “I’ve tried my best to bring the music that God has given me,” Silver said as he accepted his award. “Thankfully, you’ve accepted it… and hopefully it will continue to live on, bless, and uplift people.

“My health, both mental and physical, is good, and I intend to pursue new and different approaches to my music and my career,” Silver wrote in his 2006 autobiography, Let’s Get to the Nitty Gritty. “I will search for hidden talents that I didn’t know I had and do my best to cultivate them. I am grateful for each day, and I will try to use each day as a stepping stone to greater achievements.”

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It’s been a truly sad week for music history, as the world also lost icon Casey Kasem just three days ago. Kasem passed away Sunday morning at the age of 82 in a California hospital after battling dementia for several years. Kasem launched the show, American Top 40, in 1970 and hosted the show until 1988, when he reformatted it and changed the name to Casey’s Top 40. American Top 40 later returned to the airwaves and has been hosted by Ryan Seacrest since 2004.

Condolences to Silver’s friends and loved ones.

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