Grover Washington, Jr.

Rhythm and blues, Musical Artist

1943 – 1999

39

Who was Grover Washington, Jr.?

Grover Washington, Jr. was an American jazz-funk / soul-jazz saxophonist. Along with George Benson, John Klemmer, David Sanborn, Bob James, Chuck Mangione, Herb Alpert, and Spyro Gyra, he is considered by many to be one of the founders of the smooth jazz genre. He wrote some of his material and later became an arranger and producer.

Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Washington made some of the genre's most memorable hits, including "Mister Magic," "Reed Seed," "Black Frost," "Winelight," "Inner City Blues" and "The Best is Yet to Come". In addition, he performed very frequently with other artists, including Bill Withers on "Just the Two of Us", Patti LaBelle on "The Best Is Yet to Come" and Phyllis Hyman on "A Sacred Kind of Love". He is also remembered for his take on the Dave Brubeck classic "Take Five", and for his 1996 version of "Soulful Strut".

Washington had a preference for black nickel-plated saxophones made by Julius Keilwerth. These included a SX90R alto and SX90R tenor. He also played Selmer Mark VI alto in the early years. His main soprano was a black nickel plated H.Couf Superba II and a Keilwerth SX90 in the last years of his life.

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Born
Dec 12, 1943
Buffalo
Also known as
  • Grover Washington, Jr
  • Grover Washington, J.R.
  • Grover Washington Jr.
  • Grover Washington
  • Grover Wahington, Jr.
  • Grover Washington Jr
Parents
Spouses
Nationality
  • United States of America
Profession
Education
  • Temple University
Lived in
  • Buffalo
Died
Dec 17, 1999
New York City

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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