By | January 2, 2024

Les McCann, an innovative jazz musician best known for his hit song “Compared to What,” has passed away at the age of 88. The news of his death was confirmed by WBIR Channel 10 on January 2, 2024. While the cause of his death is currently unknown, his legacy as a talented musician and his contributions to the jazz genre will forever be remembered.

Born on September 23, 1935, in Lexington, Kentucky, McCann showed a natural talent for music from a young age. He began playing the piano at the age of nine and quickly developed a deep love for jazz. As a teenager, he honed his skills by performing in local clubs and gained recognition for his exceptional talent.

McCann’s career took off in the 1960s when he released his breakthrough album, “Swiss Movement,” in 1969. The album, recorded live at the Montreux Jazz Festival with saxophonist Eddie Harris, became a commercial success and propelled McCann into the spotlight. The iconic track “Compared to What” from the album became a jazz standard and solidified his place in music history.

Throughout his career, McCann experimented with various styles, blending jazz with elements of funk, soul, and R&B. His ability to infuse different genres with his unique style made him a pioneer in the jazz fusion movement. McCann’s music resonated with audiences around the world, and he toured extensively, captivating crowds with his energetic and soulful performances.

In addition to his success as a musician, McCann was also known for his activism and commitment to social justice. His music often carried a strong political message, addressing issues of inequality, racism, and injustice. McCann’s lyrics and performances were powerful expressions of his beliefs, and he used his platform to advocate for change.

Over the years, McCann collaborated with numerous renowned artists, including Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder, and Herbie Hancock. His talent and versatility allowed him to work across different musical genres, leaving an indelible mark on the music industry. His innovative approach to jazz and his ability to connect with audiences through his music made him a true legend.

As news of Les McCann’s passing spread, fellow musicians, critics, and fans took to social media to pay tribute to the influential artist. Many expressed their gratitude for his contributions to the world of music, highlighting his unique style and his ability to transcend genres.

While the cause of Les McCann’s death remains unknown, his legacy as a groundbreaking jazz musician will continue to inspire generations to come. His music, filled with passion, soul, and a powerful message, will forever be remembered as a testament to his talent and his unwavering commitment to his craft.

As we mourn the loss of this legendary artist, we can take solace in the fact that Les McCann’s music will live on, immortalizing him as one of the greatest jazz musicians of all time. His impact on the genre and his dedication to using music as a force for change will forever be remembered..

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@wbir said Les McCann, innovative jazz musician best known for 'Compared to What,' dies at 88 wbir.com/article/news/n…

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