Weather Report Pianist Dies at 75


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Austrian jazz pianist Joe Zawinul, who founded influential 1970s jazz-rock group Weather Report, has died.

Zawinul, 75, passed away at his home in Vienna. Austrian media reports said he had been suffering from skin cancer.

The celebrated keyboardist enjoyed his biggest hit--the Grammy-winning “Birdland"--with Weather Report in 1977.

Austrian President Heinz Fischer said Zawinul's death meant the loss of a “music ambassador" who was known and cherished around the world.

“As a person and through his music, Joe Zawinul will remain unforgettable for us all," the president said in a statement.

Born in Vienna, where he attended the Vienna Conservatory, Zawinul is credited with bringing the electric piano, as well as African and Middle Eastern rhythms, to mainstream jazz.


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