James Mtume, famous record producer, percussionist and R&B genre pioneer, has died at the age of 76.
Journalist Dyana Williams confirmed the tragic news online, writing, âJames Mtume has made the transition. As of this writing, the cause of his death remains a mystery.
Mtume is known for producing hits for Donny Hathaway, Mary J. Blige, Stephanie Mills, Roy Ayers, Roberta Flack, and more.
According to BET, his most notable song is the 1983 track “Juicy Fruit”, later sampled by the late The Notorious BIG for his first single of the same title in 1994.
The record producer is known for combining consciousness in his music and delving into heavy topics of culture, art and politics.
During his TedTalk 2019, Mtume said that while all art forms are special, music is “a unique art form.” He said music is the only thing that can âtouch you, but you can’t touch itâ.
“What do I mean by that? I can touch a sculpture, I can touch a painting, I can touch a poetry book. How do you touch a note? How do you touch sound? It goes through your body, âhe explained. .
The music icon was born James Forman in 1946. From his childhood he was surrounded by jazz musicians who often visited his parents’ house.
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Despite a scholarship for swimming at Pasadena City College, he learned to play the piano and percussion.
In 1966, he joined the American organization of Hakim Jamal and Maulana Karenga, a black empowerment group.
He changed his name to “Mtume”, which means “messenger” in Swahili.
When he joined Davis’ band, he was able to bring his skills to many albums like “Big Fun”, “Pangea” and “On the Corner”.
Survivors include her two children, Damu Mtume and Fa Mtume.
Fans mourn the death of James Mtume
After the news of James Mtume circulated on the internet, many fans rallied their support and paid tribute to the late music icon.
“I don’t even know where to start. Those who know me will know how influential James Mtume’s music is to me. He was not only a masterful musician, but also a unique producer and songwriter. . His work with Reggie Lucas is one of the best compositions of all time, âa fan writing.
“Rest In Power to the great James Mtume. The prodigal son and native of South Philly, Jazz ROYALTY (the son of the great Jimmy Heath) and pioneer and pioneer of music. His passing is truly a monumental loss,” another wrote.
“I am saddened to learn of the death of my dear friend and producer #JamesMtume. He was so brilliant and an amazing musical mind. The working chemistry we had was second to none, âsaid Grammy Award-winning singer Stephanie Mills. wrote.
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