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Jazz Flutist Moe Koffman Dies at 72

Canadian flutist and saxophonist Moe Koffman died March 28 in Toronto. He was 72 and had cancer.

Best known for his 1957 flute hit “Swinging Shepherd

Blues,” Koffman’s career stretched five decades and included dozens of albums as a leader. Koffman performed with many of the jazz’s greats including Dizzy

Gillespie, Jimmy Dorsey and Doc Severinsen. He was also a member of Sonny Dunham’s and Charlie Barnet’s bands.

Koffman studied theory at the Toronto Conservatory of Music before moving to the United States in the 1940s. After touring with Barnet and Dorsey, he returned to Toronto in 1955 and divided his career between his

own group and session work. He released over 30 albums as a leader, the latest, The Moe Koffman Project, was released last year.

He is survived by his wife Gisele, his sons Herbie, Larry and Elie, and his stepdaughter Ilya.

Originally Published