John Abercrombie – Tribute To A Jazz Guitar Great

John Abercrombie was one of the great lyrical guitarists of the 20th centuries. An innovator who's fusion of musical elements and styles marked him out as one of the great guitar players. Sadly with his passing we highlight the various obituaries and comments along with video and audio regarding John and his music.

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John Abercrombie Passes Away

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It’s with real sadness that GMI has to report the passing of one of jazz guitars great voices over the 20th and into the 21st century. John and his wonderful music will be greatly missed. We have compiled a series of articles from around the world of music and beyond to show just how influential and how missed John will be. If you have not been exposed to John Abercrombie’s music, certainly now would be a good time to listen to John and his music.

Tributes From The Press & Music Industry

From heavy weight English newspaper the Guardian…

John Abercrombie obituary | Music | The Guardian

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2017/aug/27/john-abercrombie-obituarySince hipsters appropriated the word “cool” in the 1940s, it has come to mean anything from cutting-edge musical insight to sartorial style – a catholicity that spilled over into jazz culture, so that artists of ferocious intensity and reserve could equally qualify for the description. But some of the most beguiling meanings of “cool jazz” are about power without bravura, seductive ideas left glimmering in shadows, phrasing that is insinuated rather than explicit. Miles Davis , the saxophonist Lee Konitz and the pianist Bill Evans have been luminaries of those methods, and very close to their podium stood the guitarist John Abercrombie, who has died at the age of 72. Abercrombie was an understated, delightful performer throughout a career that took off in the 70s, and after an early period in which the rawness of rock and jazz-fusion were still evident in his sound, he moved toward the more fragile chamber-jazz dynamics that shaped his mature style. He was one of a gifted generation of young guitarists influenced by rock, Latin, country and electronics as much as by bebop or swing. But Abercrombie, whose long-lined fluency sometimes suggested the sensibility of a pianist more than a guitarist, would avoid making the fierce chime of a blues chord as explicit as his contemporary, John Scofield, or the sway of a country song as open-handedly amiable as Pat Metheny. John Abercrombie obituary | Music | The Guardian

The Los Angeles Times article called John an “expressive and influential jazz guitarist”…

Inventive and influential jazz guitarist John Abercrombie dies at 72 – Los Angeles Times

http://www.latimes.com/local/obituaries/la-me-obit-john-abercrombie-20170824-story.htmlAn expressive and influential jazz guitarist as adept with standards as he was with flights into rock-accented fusion, John Abercrombie has died at 72 in New York. His death Tuesday after a long illness was confirmed by his longtime label ECM, where …HuffPostGuitar World MagazineZEALnyc Inventive and influential jazz guitarist John Abercrombie dies at 72 – Los Angeles Times

 

Premier Guitar summed up the feelings of a lot of people, such was the affection and high regard that John and his music were held in.

John Abercrombie (1944-2017) – Premier Guitar

https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/26202-john-abercrombie-1944-2017Had I not already heard that the great guitarist and composer John Abercrombie was seriously ill, I would be walking around in a state of total emotional devastation today, the day following news of his death from heart failure on August 22, 2017. The …The Boston GlobePopMattersMusicRadar – John Abercrombie (1944-2017) – Premier Guitar

 

 

The New York Times placed John in the “top tier of improvising musicians”.

John Abercrombie, Lyrical Jazz Guitarist, Dies at 72 – New York Times

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/23/arts/music/john-abercrombie-lyrical-jazz-guitarist-dies-at-72.htmlJohn Abercrombie, a jazz guitarist whose lyrical style placed him in his generation’s top tier of improvising musicians, died on Tuesday in Cortlandt Manor, N.Y. He was 72. The cause was heart failure, his brother-in-law, Gary Lefkowitz, said. Mr …NPRWashington PostBillboard – John Abercrombie, Lyrical Jazz Guitarist, Dies at 72 – New York Times

 

 

other leading guitar magazines and websites have also carried the news such as this article on Ultimate Guitar magazine.

Jazz Guitar Legend John Abercrombie Dead at 72

https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/news/general_music_news/jazz_guitar_legend_john_abercrombie_dead_at_72.htmlJazz guitar champion John Abercrombie passed away at Hudson Valley Hospital in Cortlandt Manor, NY. He was 72. His representatives issued the following statement: “It is with profound sadness that his family confirms that the legendary jazz guitarist John … Jazz Guitar Legend John Abercrombie Dead at 72

 

a nice quote from John and Marc Copland in the npr article on the news of John’s passing.

John Abercrombie, Wry And Exploratory Jazz Guitarist, Dies At 72

http://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2017/08/23/545611872/john-abercrombie-wry-and-exploratory-jazz-guitarist-dies-at-72Abercrombie often said that he developed his pioneering jazz-rock style out of necessity … on saxophone or Marc Copland on piano. “Playing guitar and piano together can be problematic, but with John it was effortless,” Copland recalled in an email. John Abercrombie, Wry And Exploratory Jazz Guitarist, Dies At 72

 

 

and finally from the press and music industry, some words from the Washington Post

John Abercrombie, influential jazz guitarist of the ’70s fusion scene, dies at 72

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/obituaries/john-abercrombie-influential-jazz-guitarist-of-the-70s-fusion-scene-dies-at-72/2017/08/23/af0970e2-8814-11e7-a50f-e0d4e6ec070a_story.htmlJohn Abercrombie, an influential jazz guitarist and composer who came to prominence … playing stringed instruments including the acoustic mandolin and the Roland guitar synthesizer, a device he once described as a “red electric safety pin.” John Abercrombie, influential jazz guitarist of the ’70s fusion scene, dies at 72

 

The Reaction From Twitter

Twitter users and followers were also out in force as the news of John’s untimely passing was announced. As usual, just a small but representative collection of tweets.

A Selection Of Youtube Videos About & Showing John in Performance

 

We have a lot to thank Youtube for in that you can still learn from John and his unique way of expressing himself on the guitar.

and here is John Abercrombie with Marc Copland.

Listen to John’s music on iTunes.

For other stories from GMI about the people and the things that make up the music industry click the link.

Pin Pinned By Nick Roberts

s pinimg.com, theguardian.com, latimes.com, premierguitar.com, nytimes.com

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