Jazz legend Ahmad Jamal passed away in Massachusetts on Sunday (April 16).
The influential pianist, who was born Frederick Russell Jones, died of complications from prostate cancer. He was 92.
Jazz icon Miles Davis famously said, “All my inspiration comes from Ahmad Jamal.” The late pianist also inspired countless Hip-Hop artists who sampled his music.
The Pittsburgh native’s work helped to create classic songs by Nas, Jay-Z, De La Soul and many more. Various members of the Hip-Hop community paid their respects to the jazz great after learning of his death.
Ahmad Jamal was perhaps best known as a pioneer of “cool jazz.” His 1958 album At the Pershing: But Not for Me brought him into the national spotlight.
The album spent more than two years on the Billboard 200 chart, which is rare for a jazz release. The project featured his renowned rendition of the song “Poinciana.”
Ahmad Jamal released his final album Ballades in 2019. It added to his immense discography, which features dozens of albums.
The Recording Academy honored Ahmad Jamal with its Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017. He also received the Kennedy Center Legend Award.
View some of the Hip-Hop artists who mourned the loss of the acclaimed musician below.