Thursday, January 22, 2009

David (Fathead) Newman, 75

Grammy-nominated jazz saxophonist and flutist

Grammy-nominated jazz saxophonist and flutist David "Fathead" Newman has died in upstate New York.

His manager says Newman died Tuesday night of pancreatic cancer at a hospital in Kingston. He was 75.

Newman began his career while still in college touring with Charlie Parker mentor Henry "Buster" Smith. In 1954, he joined the Ray Charles Band as tenor soloist. He spent 12 years with the group.

Newman later played and recorded with a wide range of jazz and soul luminaries, such as Herbie Mann, Aretha Franklin and Aaron Neville. He also led a successful solo career.

He was nominated for a Grammy in 1990 for his work with Art Blakey and Dr. John.

Newman was born on Feb. 24, 1933, in Corsicana, Tex., south of Dallas.

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