One of the last great jazz men. Trumpet great, composer, producer, mentor, educator and National Endowment of the Arts Jazz Master. Dr. Byrd's career spanned 60 years and covered a range of styles. He made a mark in traditional jazz, fusion/contemporary, Soul/R&B, funk & Hip Hop. He left behind an impressive catalog of music. His greatest gift may be that he basically gave us Herbie Hancock.
Excerpt from MSN:
He teamed up with the Mizell brothers to release "Black Byrd" in 1973, a blend of jazz, R&B and funk that became Blue Note's highest-selling album at the time. Jazz critics panned Byrd for deviating from the jazz mainstream, but he was unperturbed. "I'm creative; I'm not re-creative," Byrd told the Detroit Free Press in a 1999 interview. "I don't follow what everybody else does."For the past week I have been looking for a quote that encapsulates the style and musical approach of Dr. Byrd. The comment above captures Byrd perfectly.
See partial bio from NEA.