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Innovative jazz trumpeter Donald Byrd dies at 80

The Associated Press, Monday, February 11, 2013, 10:55am (PST)

DOVER, Del. (AP) — Jazz trumpeter, composer and educator Donald Byrd has died. He was 80.

Haley Funeral Directors in Southfield, Mich., is handling arrangements and says Byrd died Feb. 4 in Delaware. It didn't have details.

Byrd was a top hard-bop trumpeter of the 1950s who recorded dozens of albums and collaborated with artists including Herbie Hancock, Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane and Sonny Rollins.

Byrd was noted for his hard-bop style incorporating R&B, soul and gospel. He later enjoyed commercial success with hit jazz-funk fusion records such as "Black Byrd" and later still became known in hip-hop.

Byrd was the first person to teach jazz at Rutgers University and started the jazz studies department at Howard University. He was named a jazz master by the National Endowment for the Arts in 2000.

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Zezima reported from Trenton, N.J. Associated Press writer Charles J. Gans in New York contributed to this report.

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