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Sonny Fortune (Cornelius Fortune, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S, May 19, 1939 – October 25, 2018) was an American jazz saxphonist. Fortune played soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones, clarinet, and flute.

After moving to New York City in 1967, Fortune recorded and appeared live with drummer Elvin Jones's group. In 1968 he was a member of Mongo Santamaría's band. He performed with singer Leon Thomas, and with pianist McCoy Tyner (1971–73). In 1974 Fortune replaced Dave Liebman in Miles Davis's ensemble, remaining until spring 1975, when he was succeeded by Sam Morrison. Fortune can be heard on the albums Big Fun, Get Up With It, Agharta and Pangaea, the last two recorded live in Japan.

Fortune joined Nat Adderley after his brief tenure with Davis, then formed his own group in June 1975, recording two albums for the Horizon Records. During the 1990s, he recorded several albums for Blue Note. He has also performed with Roy Brooks, Buddy Rich, George Benson, Rabih Abou Khalil, Roy Ayers, Oliver Nelson, Gary Bartz, Rashied Ali, and Pharoah Sanders, as well as appearing on the live album The Atlantic Family Live at Montreux (1977).
Sonny Fortune died at the age of 79 in October 2018.


As leader
1966: Trip on the Strip with Stan Hunter (Prestige)
1974: Long Before Our Mothers Cried (Strata-East)
1975: Awakening (Horizon)
1976: Waves of Dreams (Horizon)
1977: Serengeti Minstrel (Atlantic)
1978: Infinity Is (Atlantic)
1979: With Sound Reason (Atlantic)
1992: Laying It Down
1993: Monk's Mood
1994: Four in One
1995: A Better Understanding
1996: From Now On
2000: In the Spirit of John Coltrane
2003: Continuum
2007: You and the Night and the Music
2009: Last Night at Sweet Rhythm

As sideman
With Rabih Abou-Khalil

Bukra (1988)
Al-Jadida (1990)

With Nat Adderley

On the Move (Theresa, 1983)
Blue Autumn (Theresa, 1985)
Autumn Leaves (Sweet Basil, 1990 )
Work Song: Live at Sweet Basil (Sweet Basil, 1990 )

With Kenny Barron

Innocence (Wolf, 1978)
With Gary Bartz

Alto Memories (Verve, 1994)

With George Benson

Tell It Like It Is (A&M/CTI, 1969)

With Miles Davis

Get Up with It (Columbia, 1974)
Big Fun (Columbia, 1975)
Pangaea (Columbia, 1975)
Agharta (Columbia, 1975)

With Dizzy Gillespie

Closer to the Source (Atlantic, 1984)

With Elvin Jones

Elvin Jones Jazz Machine Live at Pit Inn (Polydor (Japan), 1985)
When I Was at Aso-Mountain (Enja, 1990)
In Europe (Enja, 1991)
It Don't Mean a Thing (Enja, 1993)

With Charles Mingus

Three or Four Shades of Blues (Atlantic, 1977)

With Alphonse Mouzon

The Essence of Mystery (Blue Note, 1972)

With Pharoah Sanders

Izipho Zam (My Gifts) (Strata-East, 1969 )

With Melvin Sparks

Akilah! (Prestige, 1972)

With Leon Spencer

Bad Walking Woman (Prestige, 1972)
Where I'm Coming From (Prestige, 1973)

With Charles Sullivan

Genesis (Strata-East, 1974)

With McCoy Tyner

Sahara (Milestone, 1972)
Song for My Lady (Milestone, 1973)

With Mal Waldron

Crowd Scene (Soul Note, 1989)
Where Are You? (Soul Note, 1989)

With Mongo Santamaría

Stone Soul (1969)

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