Multi-instrumentalist jazz renaissance man Bob Belden dies

Bob Belden

Jazz saxophonist, arranger, composer, bandleader and producer Bob Belden has died at 58 after suffering a heart attack at home.

Jazz saxophonist, arranger, composer, bandleader and producer Bob Belden has died at 58 after suffering a heart attack at home.

Belden was a renowned renaissance man who had countless strings to his bow as saxophonist, arranger, composer, multi-instrumentalist, jazz historian, and one time A&R executive at Blue Note Records. This will compound the sadness in the Blue Note family this week having just lost visionary former CEO Bruce Lundvall.

Jazz FM audiences have enjoyed Belden’s arrangements via his ensemble ’Music Of ..’ series re-arranging the compositions of Sting and Prince in particular. He conducted, orchestrated and wrote arrangements for Cuban saxophonist Paquito D’Rivera, McCoy Tyner Big Band, Herbie Hancock, Lou Rawls, Joe Henderson and more. 

His work on re-issue presentations was of the highest order. ‘Miles Davis and Gil Evans: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings’ won him three Grammys for Best Historical Album and Best Album Notes and also Best Album Notes for ‘The Complete Studio Recordings of The Miles Davis Quintet 1965–1968.’ 

Grammy awards also came in the form of Best Contemporary Jazz Album for his work with trumpeter Tim Hagans on the album ’Animation/Imagination’ and ‘Re:Animation: Live!’ which both journeyed into darker electronica, plus a nomination for Best Contemporary Jazz Album in 2009 for ‘Miles from India: A Celebration of the Music of Miles Davis’, a fusion album featuring Davis alumni and Indian musicians.

More from Music News