Two For Tuesday: Grover Washington, Jr.

Saxophonist Grover Washington, Jr. is considered another smooth jazz pioneer. His career was relatively short, from 1970 until his untimely death at 56 in 1999, but he created a lot of great music in that short span of time.

Washington’s fourth album, 1975’s Mister Magic, was his breakthrough. It reached #10 on the Hot 200 album chart and #1 on the Jazz Album and R&B Album charts. The title track reached #16 on the R&B chart and #54 on the Hot 100.

“Just The Two Of Us” reached #2 on the Hot 100 and #3 on the R&B chart in 1981. From his 1980 Winelight album, it was sung by Bill Withers and won the Grammy for Best R&B Song in 1981.

Washington had a preference for black nickel-plated saxophones made by Julius Keilworth. He appeared on The CBS Morning Show in December 1999, and while waiting in the green room afterwards, suffered a massive heart attack and died. He left a considerable body of work behind.

Grover Washington, Jr., your Two for Tuesday, November 13, 2018.

8 thoughts on “Two For Tuesday: Grover Washington, Jr.

  1. I enjoy his smooth sound. Another talent lost too soon. I like your Smooth Jazz series because I learn from them. I enjoy jazz but never got into it as much as I have rock and roll.


    1. Smooth jazz isn’t entirely jazz: it has elements of rock, funk, Latin, and R&B in addition to the jazz. It’s not really complicated, as sometimes straight jazz can be. Glad you’re enjoying the series!

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