Al Jarreau, legendary Grammy-winning jazz singer dead at 76

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Al Jarreau

LOS ANGELES – Al Jarreau, a Grammy-winning jazz singer known as the “acrobat of scat,” has died, the Washington Post reported Sunday. He was 76.

The singer announced he was retiring from touring earlier this month because of exhaustion, Ebony Magazine reported.

He died in a hospital in Los Angeles surrounded by family and friends, Jarreau’s manager told the magazine.

Jarreau was born and raised in Milwaukee and later moved to Los Angeles where he was signed a recording contract with Warner Bros. and his career took off, the magazine reported.

He was 35 years old when he released his first album in 1975 and won the first of his seven Grammy Awards just two years later, according to the Post.

Following is a statement by the singer’s manager, Joe Gordon;

“Dear friends, family and colleagues,

Al Jarreau passed away this morning, at about 5:30am LA time. He was in the hospital, kept comfortable by Ryan, Susan, and a few of his family and friends.

Ryan and Susan will hold a small, private service at home, for immediate family only. No public service is planned yet, but I will inform you if that changes.

Ryan asks that no flowers or gifts are send to their home or office. Instead, if you are motivated to do so, please make a contribution to the Wisconsin Foundation for School Music, a wonderful organization which supports music opportunities, teachers, and scholarships for students in Milwaukee and throughout Wisconsin. A donation page is here. Even if you do not plan to contribute, please list that page and give yourself a few minutes to watch a beautiful tribute video that Wisconsin Public Television produced to honor Al when he received his lifetime achievement award in October.”