Another sad passing with the news that Mulgrew Miller has died following a stroke. A major influence on a generation of jazz musicians, including Julian Joseph and Trevor Watkis in the UK, Miller’s appeal was that he managed to reach the heart of the modern mainstream jazz tradition, a natural successor in a way to Oscar Peterson who was a big influence on the pianist. A former Jazz Messenger and Betty Carter sideman who kept in touch with the Noughties generation by recording with the likes of Robert Glasper sideman, the bassist and producer Derrick Hodge, with whom Miller recorded several albums in a trio format. As an educator he was a director of jazz studies at William Paterson University in New Jersey, and during his career recorded for a variety of labels including Landmark, Novus and Maxjazz. It’s perhaps his Novus period in the early and mid-1990s, which produced Hand in Hand, With Our Own Eyes, and Getting to Know You, that fans and admirers most recall with affection and a degree of wonderment at Miller’s natural often thrilling technique, hugely imaginative voicings and improvisational flair. His sideman work was equally significant whether with Tony Williams on the great drummer’s final album, or with Ron Carter’s Golden Striker trio. There’s a full obituary in The New York Times. The link is here: