Dave Brubeck sits next to a piano in Monterey, California,
in this 2007 file photo. REUTERS/Kimberly White/Files
Jazz pianist Dave Brubeck, whose choice of novel rhythms,
classical structures and brilliant sidemen made him a towering
figure in modern jazz, has died at the age of 91, his longtime
manager and producer Russell Gloyd says.
Brubeck died of heart failure on his way to a regular medical
exam at Norwalk Hospital, in Norwalk, Conn., said Gloyd.
His Dave Brubeck Quartet put out one of the biggest selling
jazz songs of all time: "Take Five," composed by alto
saxophonist Paul Desmond. Like many of the group's works, it
had an unusual beat -- 5/4 time as opposed to the usual 4/4.
"We play it differently every time we play it," Brubeck told
The Philadelphia Inquirer in 2005. "So I never get tired of
playing it. That's the beauty of jazz."
"Take Five" was the first million-selling jazz single.
Brubeck injected classical counterpoint, atonal harmonies and
modern dissonance into his music, hinting at composers such
as Debussy, Bartok, Stravinsky and Bach.