Roy Hargrove, Grammy-Winning Jazz Trumpet Player, Dies at 49

“He is literally the one man horn section I hear in my head when I think about music,” Questlove posted on Instagram in memoriam

Last Updated: November 3, 2018 @ 11:47 AM

Roy Hargrove, a Grammy-winning jazz trumpet player who has collaborated with Sonny Rollins, Wynton Marsalis, Herbie Hancock and modern R&B and soul acts including Common, D’Angelo and Erykah Badu, has died. He was 49.

According to his Facebook page, Hargrove died on Nov. 2. NPR says Hargrove died of cardiac arrest, according to his longtime manager Larry Clothier. A representative for Hargrove did not immediately respond to TheWrap for comment.

“He is literally the one man horn section I hear in my head when I think about music,” Questlove posted to Instagram Saturday. “Love to the immortal timeless genius that will forever be Roy Hargrove y’all.”

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The Great Roy Hargrove. He is literally the one man horn section I hear in my head when I think about music. To watch him harmonize with himself stacking nine horn lines on mamouth 10 mins songs RARELY rewinding to figure out what he did. Or not even contemplating what the harmony was (this is up there with Jay Z never writes his rhymes territory) —-like you can hear an incomplete Dangelo song once—-like an 11 min song—-and then in 20 secs you know the EXACT SPOT ON line to bob in and weave out?!!!! I know I’ve spoken in every aspect of Soulquarian era recording techniques but even I can’t properly document how crucial and spot on Roy was with his craft man. We NEVER gave him instructions: just played the song and watched him go —-like “come back in 45 mins I’ll have something” matter of fact now that I think of it —-I was so amped to put handclaps on @Common’s #ColdBlooded @JamesPoyser and i didn’t even take proper time out to approve what he worked on, it was like I already knew. So when you hear us SCREAMING/laughing at the 1:51 mark (me/com/d/rahzel/james) that’s us MIND BLOWN at another #Game6 esque performance from Roy. And all that stuff towards the end? We just reacting in real time to greatness. Such a key component. And a beautiful cat man. Love to the immortal timeless genius that will forever be Roy Hargrove y’all. #RoyHargroveRip

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Hargrove won a Grammy in 1998 for his Afro-Cuban album “Habana” with the band Crisol, and a second in 2002 for the album “Directions in Music: Live at Massey Hall,” along with co-bandleaders Herbie Hancock and Michael Brecker. He was also the frontman for The RH Factor, which combined elements of jazz with funk, hip-hop, soul and gospel.

Hargrove had been scheduled to perform today at Bethany Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey, as part of a jazz vespers service. His Facebook page has  posted a series of in memoriam shows to celebrate his life, which you can find here.