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Kenny Ball was Britain's most successful jazz musician

Trumpeter Kenny Ball, who died in hospital this morning, was Britain's most successful jazz musician in history with 14 top 30 hits, including Midnight in Moscow which sold over a million copies.

Louis Armstrong presents Kenny Ball with a gold disc in 1962. Credit: ITV News
Ball appeared on every show in the first six series of Morecambe and Wise. Credit: ITV News
The Essex-born trumpeter had 14 top 30 hits, making him the most successful British jazz musician. Credit: ITV News
His biggest hit was Midnight in Moscow which sold a million copies. Credit: ITV News


Trumpeter Ball and his band regularly appeared on TV

Jazz trumpeter Kenny Ball became a well-known face on TV with his band featuring regularly on light entertainment shows.

They made numerous appearances on the Morecambe And Wise Show and went on to become the resident band on the popular BBC1 series Saturday Night At The Mill, which was broadcast from Birmingham's Pebble Mill studios.

He achieved his biggest hit with Midnight In Moscow - effectively his signature tune - but other top 10 hits in the early 1960s were March Of The Siamese Children, The Green Leaves Of Summer and Sukiyaki.

Trumpeter Kenny Ball 'was playing until the end'

Jazz trumpeter Kenny Ball died in hospital this morning where he was being treated for pneumonia, his manager said.

Les Squires said the musician, who was in his early 80s, died in Basildon Hospital in Essex at 7.30am.

Jazz trumpeter Kenny Ball died this morning in hospital. Credit: Press Assocation

He said: "He had been in and out of hospital recently but sadly this time he did not come out, but he was playing to the end."

Mr Squires said Ball was survived by his partner and his son, Keith, who had joined his father on stage playing with his group The Jazzmen.

He said the musician had continued to perform, having left hospital to play a gig in Germany at the end of January, before being re-admitted.

Ball, who lived in Essex, found fame in the early 1960s with a string of trad jazz hits including Midnight In Moscow which got to number two in the charts on 1961.

The track, which was also a hit in the United States, sold more than one million copies around the world.

Stars attend 2013 Jazz FM awards in London

Jamie Cullum, Suggs and Cerys Matthews were among the celebrities attending the 2013 Jazz FM Awards in central London this evening.

Suggs, Cerys Matthews and Jamie Cullum attend the 2013 Jazz FM Awards. Credit: ITV News/Louisa Felton

Cullum missed out on the best UK Jazz Artist gong - with the award going to the Neil Cowley Trio - but went on to perform with Ahmad Jamal, who was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement accolade at the star-studded event.

Grammy award-winning Kurt Elling took home International Jazz Artist and 14-strong group Beats & Pieces Big Band went away with Best UK Newcomer.


Report: Jazz great Brubeck died of heart failure

Jazz great Dave Brubeck died of heart failure at Norwalk Hospital, in Norwalk, Connecticut, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The 91-year-old's choice of novel rhythms, classical structures and brilliant sidemen made him a towering figure in modern jazz.

Yet Take Five, recorded by the Dave Brubeck Quartet before becoming one of the biggest selling jazz songs of all time, was actually written by the band's alto saxophonist Paul Desmond.