Grammy Award winning Jazz pianist and composer Chick Corea died February 9, 2021 as a result of cancer at the age of 79.

Working until the end, Corea had commissions for a trombone concerto for the New York Philharmonic and a percussion concerto for the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Over the course of his 50 plus year career, Corea worked with Miles Davis, Gary Burton, Bela Fleck, Sarah Vaughan, Miroslav Vitous, Roy Haynes, Cab Calloway, Blue Mitchell, Herbie Mann, Stan Getz, Cal Tjader, Donald Byrd, Dizzy Gillespie, and Herbie Hancock.

His accomplishments include 23 Grammys as a solo artist  and has wins with the Chick Corea Akoustic Band, Return to Forever, the Chick Corea Trio, and Chick Corea and the Spanish Heart Band.  He was also named a National Endowment of the Arts Jazz Master, had four Latin Grammy Awards, is a member of the International Society of Jazz Arrangers and Composers Hall of Fame and a frequent winner of Downbeat Magazine’s Jazz Artist of the Year award.

Prior to his death Corea posted a message on his Facebook page saying, “I want to thank all of those along my journey who have helped keep the music fires burning bright. It is my hope that those who have an inkling to play, write, perform or otherwise, do so. If not for yourself then for the rest of us. It’s not only that the world needs more artists, it’s also just a lot of fun.”

Along with his solo work, Corea formed the groups Circle, and Return to Forever; as well as, an acoustic band.  More than just a Jazz artist, he performed Classical, Latin, and standards.

His music has appeared in the film and television productions “Too Hot to Handle”, “Spede Show”, “The Road to Freedom: L. Ron Hubbard and Friends”, “Cat Chaser”, “You Don’t Look 40, Charlie Brown”,  “Empire”, “The Mortician”, “The Grammy Awards”, “The Mark of Beauty”, “Late Night with Seth Meyers”, and “The Two Popes”.

He was born Armando Anthony Corea on June 12, 1941 in Chelsea, Massachusetts where he began piano lessons at the very young age of four.  At one time he attended Columbia University and the Julliard School of Music.

Corea is survived by his wife Gayle and song Thaddeus.

Chick Corea discography:
“La Fiesta”
“Now He Sings, Now He Sobs”
“Tones for Joan’s Bones”
“Jazz for a Sunday Afternoon”
“Song of Singing”
“Piano Improvisations, Vol. 1”
“Early Circle”
“Crystal Silence”
“Light as a Feather”
“Piano Improvisations, Vol. 2”
“Return to Forever”
“Hymn of the Seventh Galaxy”
“Live in New York City” 1974
“Where Have I Known You Before”
“No Mystery”
“The Leprechaun”
“My Spanish Heart”
“The Sun”
“Secret Agent”
“An Evening with Chick Corea & Herbie Hancock”
“Delphi I: Solo Piano Improvisations”
“An Evening with Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea: In Concert”
“Live: Complete Concert”
“The Mad Hatter”
“Duet: Chick Corea & Gary Burton”
“In Concert: Zurich, October 28, 1979”
“Tap Step”
“Trio Music”
“Three Quartets”
“Live in Montreux”
“Again and Again”
“The Meeting”
“The Griffith Park Colleciton”
“Lyric Suite for Sextet”
“The Griffith Park Colleciton 2: In Concert”
“Chick Corea: Children’s Songs”
“On Two Pianos”
“Trio Music: Live in Europe”
“The Elekrtic Band”
“Light Years”
“Eye of the Beholder”
“Chick Corea Akoustic Band”
“Inside Out”
“Acoustic Band Live”
“Beneath the Mask”
“Masters of Piano”
“Paint the World”
“Time Warp”
“Live from the Country Club”
“Live from Elario’s”
“The Mozart Sessions”
“Remembering Bud Powell”
“Circle 1: Live in Germany”
“Native Sense: The New Duets”
“Like Minds”
“A Week at the Blue Note”
“Corea Concerto: Spain for Sextet & Orchestra / Piano Concerto No. 1”
“Live from Blue Note Tokyo”
“Solo Piano: Standards”
“Solo Piano: Originals”
“Past, Present, & Futures”
“Rendezvous in New York”
“To the Stars”
“The Ultimate Adventure”
“The Enchantment”
“Chillin’ in Chelan”
“From Miles”
“Duet: Chick & Hiromi”
“The New Crystal Silence”
“Five Peace Band: Live”
“Further Explorations”
“The Continents: Concerto for Jazz Quintet & Chamber Orchestra”
“Hot House”
“The Vigi”
“Solo Piano: Portraits”
“Chick & Makoto: Duets”
“The Musician”
“Groove Dreams”
“Chinese Butterfly”
“Trilogy 2”

Feature photo credit: By Tsaorin – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,