Tags: jim hall | dies | jazz | guitarist

Jim Hall Dies at 83: Jazz Guitarist Remembered for Musical Generosity

Wednesday, 11 Dec 2013 06:11 PM

By Ken Mandel

Jazz guitarist Jim Hall, who has worked with some of the foremost musicians during a 50-year career, died Tuesday at his Greenwich Village home at age 83.

His wife, Jane Hall, told The Associated Press that her husband died of heart failure. His death came less than a week after his birthday.

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Hall earned his place in jazz history for his impressive playing ability, and lists pianist Bill Evans, singer Ella Fitzgerald, saxophonists Sonny Rollins and Paul Desmond, drummer Chico Hamilton, and bassist Ron Carter among his collaborators.

The leader of a trio for nearly 50 years, Hall performed until shortly before his death. His trio performed at Jazz at Lincoln Center's Allen Room with guest guitarists John Abercrombie and Peter Bernstein. He had been planning to tour Japan next month, according to The Associated Press.

"Jim was one of the most important improvising guitarists in jazz history," guitarist Pat Metheny, who worked with Hall, said in an email to The Associated Press. "His musical generosity was an exact reflection of his deep humanity."

He was born on Dec. 4, 1930, in Buffalo, N.Y., and grew up in Cleveland. He began playing guitar at age 10 and landed his first professional jobs while in his teens.

In addition to his wife of 48 years, the former Jane Yuckman, a psychoanalyst, Hall is survived by his daughter, Devra Hall Levy.

On his personal website, Hall describes music as a way to bring people together across "geography, ideology, religion or other discriminations." In accepting the NEA Jazz Masters Fellowship award in January 2004, he said, "The women and men who have received this award in the past have spread peace and love throughout the world, something that governments might emulate. I am pleased to be one of the peacemakers."

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