Gary Peacock, legendary jazz double bassist who performed with Albert Ayler, Bill Evans, dies at 85

The cause of Gary Peacock's death has not been disclosed.

FP Staff September 08, 2020 15:08:16 IST
Gary Peacock, legendary jazz double bassist who performed with Albert Ayler, Bill Evans, dies at 85

Legendary jazz double-bassist Gary Peacock, who performed and recorded with noted figures of jazz, like Albert Ayler, Paul Bley, Tony Williams, Marc Copland and Bill Evans, has passed away at the age of 85, reports NPR. 

The cause of his death remains undisclosed.

Manfred Eicher, the founder of ECM Records, confirmed the news of his death in a statement to slippeddisc.com. Describing Peacock as a "life-long friend" and a musician he "admired greatly," he says he was "pleased and proud to be able to feature him so early in our programme."

Peacock was born in Idaho in 1935 and dabbled in drums and piano before completely shifting gear with to bass in 1956, when he played in a jazz ensemble during an Army stint in Germany. By the beginning of the 1960s, he had already started to establish himself as a distinguished jazz musician. He performed with the likes of Art Pepper and Bud Shank, and later went onto strike up a creative partnership with Canadian free jazz pianist Paul Bley.  He also married his first wife Annette Peacock, an avant-garde artiste and composer, during that time.

Peacock featured on several albums, including Bill Evans’ Trio 64 and Albert Aylers’ Spiritual Unity. He also worked closely with Paul Motian, who was part of Bill Evans' trio. He recorded his first album, titled Eastward, in 1970 with Japanese drummer Hiroshi Murakami and pianist Masabumi Kikuchi during his two-year stay in Japan.

In the latter part of the decade, Peacock collaborated with pianist Keith Jarrett and drummer Jack DeJohnette for his album Tales of Another. The trio went onto deliver several iconic albums together, such as Jarrett’s albums Standards, Vol 1 and Vol 2, Changes (1984),  The Cure (1990) and Tribute (1991).

Peacock's final studio album was Tangents in 2017. The following year,  ECM released a live recording of Peacock, Jarrett, and DeJohnette from a 1998 performance in New Jersey, titled After the Fall. 

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