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Brother Ah

The jazz and classical music artist Robert ‘Brother Ah’ Northern has died at the age of 86.

Northern passed away on May 31 in Washington, with his wife, Ayana Watkins-Northern, telling The New York Times that the cause of death was a respiratory illness that he had been battling for about a year.

Northern was an accomplished French horn player, and played on such classic jazz records as ‘The Thelonious Monk Orchestra at Town Hall’, John Coltrane’s ‘Africa/Brass’ and Charlie Haden’s ‘Liberation Music Orchestra’. He was also a member of the experimental group Sun Ra’s Arkestra for a decade, saying of his time in the band: “It wasn’t like a jazz band, this was like an orchestra. And I went wild.”

As a bandleader, Northern, who adopted his Brother Ah moniker in the early 1970s after it was coined by his students at Dartmouth College, released a number of albums, including 1972’s ‘Sound Awareness’, ‘Move Ever Onward’ (1975) and ‘Key to Nowhere’ (1983).

As well as his career in music, Northern was renowned in Washington D.C. as a DJ of jazz and spiritual music on the community FM station WPFW.

Northern’s work as an educator included a stint teaching at Dartmouth College, and he continued to teach in schools and youth programs until shortly before he died.

The post Jazz artist Robert ‘Brother Ah’ Northern has died appeared first on NME Music News, Reviews, Videos, Galleries, Tickets and Blogs | NME.COM.


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