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Tributes are paid to jazz pianist Sir George Shearing

Tributes are paid to jazz pianist Sir George Shearing

Tributes have been paid to the jazz pianist and composer Sir George Shearing who has died aged 91.

Sir George was blind from birth but he showed great talent on the piano from an early age.

He eventually turned his musical gifts to jazz and became prominent in the British jazz scene, producing a number of recordings in his own right as well as playing with many of the greats in the UK including Stephane Grappelli.

Sir George moved to New York in 1947 where he was soon rubbing shoulders with some of the top jazz musicians of the day. Among those he worked with was Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald.

In 1949 he formed The George Shearing Quintet with which he produced a number of hits including the classic Lullaby Of Birdland (1952), see below.

He was made an O.B.E. in 1996 and was knighted in 2007.

Sir George was still performing into his 80s but suffered a serious fall in 2004.

He died in New York from suspected heart failure.

To listen to Sir George Shearing’s Lullaby Of Birdland click here.


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