Quincy Jones turns 86 today

He is mostly known for producing Michael Jackson’s best selling albums including “Thriller”

Quincy Jones turns 86 today

Record producer, actor, conductor, arranger, composer, musician, television producer, film producer, instrumentalist, magazine founder, entertainment company executive, and humanitarian, Quincy Jones remains one of the most powerful and acclaimed figures of music and showbiz. He was born on March 14, 1933, in Chicago, Illinois, Raised in Seattle, Washington, Jones developed an interest in music at an early age, and attended the Berklee College of Music. He came to prominence in the 1950s as a jazz arranger and conductor, before moving on to work prolifically in pop music and film scores. In 1968, Jones and his songwriting partner, Bob Russell, became the first African Americans to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song, for “The Eyes of Love” from the Universal Pictures film Banning. That same year, Jones was the first African American to be nominated twice in the same year, as he was also nominated for his work on the 1967 film In Cold Blood for an Academy Award for Best Original Score. In 1971, Jones was the first African American to be the musical director and conductor of the Academy Awards ceremony. Though an acclaimed Jazz musician and conductor, perhaps Jones most famous side is as producer, in particular with Michael Jackson, with whom he produced the hit albums “Off the Wall” (1979), “Thriller” (1982), and “Bad” (1987), as well as the producer and conductor of the 1985 charity song “We Are the World”, which raised funds for victims of destitution in Ethiopia. Another side of Quincy Jones (less known) is an activist. Jones’s social activism began in the 1960’s with his support of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Jones is one of the founders of the Institute for Black American Music (IBAM), whose events aim to raise enough funds for the creation of a national library of African-American art and music. Since then he has enrolled in many other causes mostly for African Americans. In 2013, Jones was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as the winner, alongside Lou Adler, of the Ahmet Ertegun Award.

Watch the Quincy Jones American Masters documentary “In The Pocket”



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