Known as the “Godfather of Fusion,” legendary guitarist Larry Coryell died Sunday at the age of 73 in his New York City hotel room, according to statement sent to Billboard magazine from jazz publicist Jim Eigo.
For over 40 years, Coryell recorded more than 75 albums as a bandleader, soloist and featured accompanist. His eclectic career included collaborations with many acclaimed musicians, primarily in jazz, including Miles Davis, Chick Corea, Dave Brubeck, Al DiMeola, Gary Burton, Alphonse Mouzon and Chet Baker.
Coryell’s works often mixed jazz, classical and rock ingredients, something he seemed eager to pursue from the beginning of his career.
“I’m not going to be a smash overnight,” Coryell said in a New York Times interview in 1968.
“There is a slow process of evolution. One side of my personality likes the soft stuff, the jazz. The other side likes to play hard things, rock, with big amps.”
His 1969 album Spaces, which also featured the great John McLaughlin, was often hailed as the beginning of the ’70s fusion jazz movement.
In 1974, Coryell formed The 11th House, the most popular and successful fusion band of its time, which included his friend and colleague Randy Brecker.
After The 11th House disbanded, Larry was signed by Clive Davis for Arista Records, where he made a series of solo albums.
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