Saxophone great Robin Kenyatta dead at 62


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NEW YORK (AP)- Robin Kenyatta, a jazz saxophonist known for his free style of jazz and bop, died in his sleep Oct. 26 in Lausanne, Switzerland, said his daughter Ayo Kenyatta Haynes. He was 62 and a resident of Manhattan.

Kenyatta collaborated with musicians like saxophonists Archie Shepp, Sonny Stitt, trumpeter Bill Dixon, and trombonist Roswell Rudd. Although known as an alto saxophonist, he also played tenor saxophone and flute.

Born Robert Prince Haynes in 1942 in Moncks Corner, S.C., Kenyatta's family moved to New York when he was four and he began playing saxophone at 14. He adopted the name Kenyatta in honor of Kenyan nationalist leader Jomo Kenyatta.

Kenyatta recorded three albums for Atlantic Records in the 1970s: “Gypsy Man," “Terra Nova" and “Stompin' at the Savoy." He also recorded “Until," “Girl From Martinique," and “Cool Blue."

He moved to Switzerland in the early 1970s, performed throughout Europe and founded a music school in Lausanne called Hello Jazz. Recently, he taught at Bentley College in Massachusetts. In 2003, in Boston, he gave his first United States performance in years.

Besides his daughter, Kenyatta is survived by his mother, Rebecca; a brother Thomas; a sister, Doris; two sons, Brandon and Lorin; and two grandchildren.


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