Jazzman Grover Washington Jr. Dead

Saxophonist who had crossover hit with 'Just the Two of Us' was 56.

Jazz saxophonist Grover Washington Jr. died in New York on Friday (Dec. 17), from an apparent heart attack after taping a performance for CBS television's "The Saturday Early Show," according to news reports. He was 56. Washington, who crossed over to the pop chart with his 1981 collaboration with soul singer Bill Withers, "Just the Two of Us," collapsed following the taping, according to wire-service accounts. The performance, which featured a healthy-looking Washington backed by a six-member band, aired on Saturday morning. "I will always be grateful for the honor of playing saxophone with Grover back in 1993, after a White House jazz concert, and for the wonderful music he performed at my inaugural celebrations and my 50th birthday celebration," President Clinton said in a statement. Washington, who fused jazz with soul, was born in Buffalo, N.Y., and began playing music at age 10. His most recent album was Prime Cuts: the Columbia Recordings 1987-99.

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