Josef Zawinul, pianist, electric keyboard and jazz fusion pioneer and co-founder of seminal band Weather Report, passed away September 11 in his hometown of Vienna, Austria. He celebrated his 75th birthday in July, and had recently completed a summer tour of Europe with his band the Zawinul Syndicate for their twenty year jubilee, after which he entered a hospital in Vienna for treatment of cancer.
"Joe Zawinul was born on July 7, 1932 in earth time, and on September 11, 2007 in eternal time. He lives on," his son Erich said in a statement yesterday.
For all of us who grew up listening to Joe Zawinul's music this couldn't be more true -- the man and his music will continue to inspire.
In this small tribute we get to see what a great musician and wonderful human being Joe Zawinul was -- an amazing life for an amazing man. May he rest in peace.
Career highlights from an Austrian TV special, including a brilliant duet with fellow Viennese pianist extraordinaire Friedrich Gulda and, of course, his mega hit Mercy, Mercy, Mercy.
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