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East Bay Remembers Native Dave Brubeck

The jazz pianist was born in Concord on Dec. 6, 1920 and later lived in the Oakland Hills. He was one of the most influential jazz performers of the 1950s and '60s.

Jazz pianist and Concord native Dave Brubeck has died at the age of 91, a day before his 92nd birthday.

Brubeck was born in Concord on on Dec. 6, 1920 and early in his career lived on Heartwood Drive in the Oakland Hills. (You can see a photo of the house, designed by Piedmont native David Thorne, here.) Brubeck went on to become a popular jazz musician with pieces such as "In Your Own Sweet Way" and "The Duke." “Take Five,” a composition from his best-selling album Time Out, became a jazz standard and the bestselling jazz song of all time.

Concord Mayor Dan Helix knew Brubeck and has fond memories of the musician visiting the city.

"I remember when Dave first performed with his group at the Concord Blvd. Park," said Helix in an email to Concord Patch. "It was awesome and he spoke about attending Mt. Diablo High School. He remembered the names of his teachers."

When Brubeck performed his iconic 'Take Five', the entire audience gave him a standing ovation, Helix remembers, adding that Brubeck also performed at the Concord Pavilion, always to a capacity crowd.

"He will be with us forever because his music will never die," said Helix.

As a dedication to the jazz pioneer and his local roots, the City of Concord re-named the park on Concord Boulevard "Dave Brubeck Memorial Park".

Brubeck died died of heart failure Wednesday morning while he was en route to "a regular treatment with his cardiologist,” at Norwalk Hospital, in Norwalk, Conn., according to his longtime manager-producer-conductor Russell Gloyd and as reported by the Chicago Times.

Share your memories of Dave Brubeck in the comments.

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