Yusef Lateef, Jazz Legend, Dead at 93
Heinrich Klaffs

Yusef Lateef, a Grammy-winning jazz musician, has died. He was 93.

According to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, the multi-instrumentalist and composer died at at his home in Shutesbury, Mass., on Monday (Dec. 23). He had been battling prostrate cancer.

Lateef, born William Emanuel Huddleston, was primarily a saxophonist and flautist, though he also added a number of other instruments -- some known mostly for their usage in world music, such as the bamboo flute. This contributed to his fusion of jazz with Eastern music.

He was one of many musicians to come out of the Detroit jazz scene in the '40s and '50s, eventually playing with Dizzy Gillespie's orchestra. He went on to record a number of albums highly regarded in jazz circles, such as 1961's "Eastern Sounds" and "Into Something."

In later years, he won a Grammy award for Best New Age Album, emerging victorious in 1987 for "Yusuf Lateef's Little Symphony" -- an album for which he recorded all parts, including water drums, kalangu and the sitar.