American jazz pianist Dave McKenna
has died of lung cancer. He was 78. McKenna passed away on Saturday in State College, Pennsylvania.
The jazz great launched to stardom as a piano player for the big bands of famed saxophonist Charlie Ventura
and jazz clarinetist Woody Herman
Recording his first solo album in 1955, McKenna also became well-known for his collaborations with jazz greats Bobby Hackett
, Bob Wilber
and saxophonist Stan Getz
He became more focused on his solo career in the 1960s and 70s, recording first as a bandleader and accompanist and later as an soloist.
His unique melodic style, called the "three-handed swing", helped distinguish the star from his contemporaries - noted on albums including My Friend the Piano
and Left Handed Complement
McKenna is survived by his wife, Frances, his sons Stephen and Douglas, and a granddaughter.
(This news article provided by World Entertainment News Network)