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Jazz flautist Sam Most passes away

Jazz flautist Sam Most passes away

THE death has taken place of the jazz flautist Sam Most. He was 82.

As a young man, Mr. Most studied at New York’s Manhattan School of Music. Although the flute was his favourite instrument, he also played the piano, saxophone and clarinet.

At 18, he was playing in the reed section of Tommy Dorsey’s big band before going on to play in a number of other bands and groups, sometimes as leader. He also toured extensively with Buddy Rich’s orchestra.

Mr. Most was drawn to bebop by the music of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. With his talent for scat singing and improvisation, Mr. Most was to become an influential figure to some young musicians. Many were also taken by his talent to hum and play the flute at the same time.

While the technique certainly added a distinctive sound to some of his performances, the musician admitted that he had developed it as a way of reducing the noise while practicing in his apartment.

During his career he released more than 20 recordings, including Undercurrent Blues (1952), Mostly Flute (1976) and A Time for Love (2012), with Bob Alcivar.

Mr. Most had lived in Los Angeles since the early 1960s. He never married and is survived by a brother and two sisters. Another brother, Abe, who had been a swing clarinetist, passed away in 2002.

To see footage of Mr. Most performing I Got It Bad, with The Mort Weiss Quintet click here.

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