Revered jazz pianist McCoy Tyner dies at age 81

The jazz legend won five Grammys over his lifetime.

Influential jazz pianist Alfred ‘McCoy’ Tyner has passed away. He was 81.

The news was announced by Tyner’s estate through the pianist’s social media accounts. No cause of death was given.

“It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of jazz legend, Alfred ‘McCoy’ Tyner,” the statement reads. “McCoy was an inspired musician who devoted his life to his art, his family and his spirituality. McCoy Tyner’s music and legacy will continue to inspire fans and future talent for generations to come.”


Tyner is best known for being part of the popular ’60s quartet fronted by saxophone legend and good friend John Coltrane. From 1961 to 1965, the band recorded seven albums, all released under Impulse! Records. During that time, Tyner also released a handful of records as bandleader.

The pianist parted ways with Coltrane in 1965, after The John Coltrane Quartet Plays, and signed with famed jazz label Blue Note. While at Blue Note, Tyner would release a trio of acclaimed albums: 1967’s The Real McCoy, 1968’s Expansions and 1970’s Extensions.

Tyner continued making music late into his life, with his last record, Solo: Live from San Francisco, arriving in 2009. Over his illustrious career, the pianist earned 12 Grammy nominations, of which he won five.


RIP, McCoy Tyner. Listen to his Grammy-winning 1995 record Infinity below:

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