JAZZ keyboardist Bernard Wright, the son of legendary soul singer Roberta Flack, has passed away at 58.
Family friend, guitarist and former Jamaica Boys bandleader Billy “Spaceman” Patterson confirmed Wright’s death on social media on Friday.
“On behalf of the family of Bernard Wright (Nard), We are saddened to announce that yesterday Bernard has been called home to the Most High,” the friend wrote.
“Many thanks for everyone’s support, encouragement, and prayers for Nard throughout the years. Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers through this difficult time.
“Our hearts are heavy and our faith is strong. To be absent from the body is to be present with The Lord! LOVE! Rest In Power, Nard.”
A cause of death has yet to be determined.
Born in Jamaica, Queens, at a young age, Wright toured with Lenny White at 13 and played with Tom Browne in 1979.
He got such a strong response that he was signed to GRP in 1981 and released his debut album, Nard, under the label.
Tracks from his debut album have been sampled in hits by hip-hop legends such as Tupac, Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Skee-Lo and LL Cool J.
He continued to put out hit albums, including 1983’s Funky Beat and ’85’s Mr. Wright, which featured the smash R&B single Who Do You Love.
Wright also co-wrote and sang with La La on We’ll Keep Strivin.
He recorded with Cameo, Bobby Brown, Pieces of a Dream and Charles Earland, among others.
Wright is survived by his mother, Flack, the iconic soul singer behind the hit singles The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face, Killing Me Softly with His Song, Feel Like Makin’ Love, Where Is the Love and The Closer I Get to You.