He would have turned 92 on Thursday. He died while on his way to a cardiology appointment, Russell Gloyd, his producer, conductor and manager for 36 years, said. Brubeck lived in Wilton, Conn. In a long and successful career, Mr. Brubeck brought a distinctive mixture of experimentation and accessibility that won over listeners who had been trained to the sonic dimensions of the three-minute pop single. Brubeck experimented with time signatures and polytonality and explored musical theater and the oratorio, baroque compositional devices and foreign modes. He did not always please the critics, who often described his music as schematic, bombastic and — a word he particularly disliked — stolid. David Warren Brubeck was born on Dec. Surrounded by farms, his family lived a bucolic life: his father, Pete, was a cattle buyer for a meat company, and his mother, Elizabeth, was a choir director at the nearby Presbyterian church.
Brubeck's style ranged from refined to bombastic, reflecting both his mother's classical training and his own improvisational skills. His music is known for employing unusual time signatures as well as superimposing contrasting rhythms, meters , and tonalities. He was also a composer of orchestral and sacred music and wrote soundtracks for television, such as Mr. Often incorrectly attributed to Brubeck, the song " Take Five ", which has become a jazz standard , was composed by Brubeck's long-time musical partner, alto saxophonist Paul Desmond. His father had Swiss ancestry the family surname was originally Brodbeck and possibly Native American Modoc lineage,  while his maternal grandparents were English and German. He could not read music during these early lessons, attributing this difficulty to poor eyesight, but "faked" his way through well enough that this deficiency went mostly unnoticed. Intending to work with his father on their ranch, Brubeck entered the College of the Pacific in Stockton, California now the University of the Pacific , studying veterinary science.
Brubeck was taught piano by his mother from the age of four—and for a period of time he deceived her by memorizing songs rather than learning to read music. He worked as a pianist with local jazz groups from and studied music at the College of the Pacific —42 in Stockton , California, where he formed and led a piece orchestra. George S. During this period, Brubeck also studied with Arnold Schoenberg , the inventor of the tone system of composition. He formed the Dave Brubeck Octet in , employing fellow classmates as band members. The octet recordings sound ahead of their time even by contemporary standards, and the highly experimental group disbanded after their radicalism failed to find an audience. Brubeck next led a trio that proved popular in the San Francisco area, but he was forced to disband it in after he was incapacitated for many months by a back injury. In late Brubeck reformed the trio, which soon became a quartet with the addition of alto saxophonist Paul Desmond. Brubeck was a major figure in the West Coast jazz movement, which grew somewhat independently of New York-based bebop.