Ahmed Jamal, American jazz pianist and composer, died on Sunday at his home in Ashley Falls, Massachusetts. I had 92 years old.

Jamal’s widow Laura Hess-Heyconfirmed his death, reported The Washington Postwhile his daughter Sumaya Jamal told the newspaper The New York Times that the cause was Prostate cancer that he suffered

During eight decades of a professional career, Jamal had a creative imagination and a captivating and minimalist way of approaching the instrument with which he marked the history of jazz in its golden age. His style is described as based on surprise, ruptures, the use of silences, with romantic accents, with a phrasing that is both dynamic and light.

Born Frederick Russell Jones in Pittsburgh, USA, in July 1930, at the age of three he began to play the piano and, four years later, he began his formal studies. By joining the musicians’ union at the age of 14, the pianist Art Tatum congratulated him indicating that he had “a nice future”. In the 1940s, during the revolution in musical style be bopaid attract a wider audience to jazz.

In the 1950s, he led several trios and quartets until he settled in a trio with the bassist Israel Crosby and the drummer Vernel Fournierwho launched At Pershing: but not for me (1958), which is one of the recordings most popular and influential in jazz history. This work marked the beginning of his success, as he was over 100 weeks on the Billboard chartsthe American chart of the most popular titles and according to the New York Times, it became one of the best-selling instrumental discs of the time.

He released up to three albums a year in the late 1960s and early 1970s, with more than 60 albums during his career, in what The Times called a “catalog full of jewelry”. One of them, awakening (1970) was widely acclaimed for its originality by jazz standards.

Similarly, the African-American pianist Ha music composed for soundtracks several films and founded several record labels.

During his professional career, he won countless rewardsincluding the prestigious distinction Order of Arts and Letters of France in 2007 and an award grammys for his entire career in 2017.

Music news outlets in France and the UK also reported on his death. Jamal was friends with great musicians like the American jazz trumpeter and composer Miles Davis; Ahmad Jamal influenced his work and that of other musicians, including the pianist McCoy Tyner. “All my inspiration comes from Ahmad Jamal”Davis said in The New York Times.

In an interview with The Times late last year, Jamal said: “I keep evolving every time I sit down at the piano”. “I still have new ideas”added.

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