Jazz trumpeter Klein dies at 76

baden-wurtemberg, germany (jta) | Oscar Klein, a self-taught, Chicago-style trumpeter, died in his home in Baden-Wurtemberg, Germany, on Tuesday, Dec. 12.

Klein was born in Graz, Austria, to a Jewish family that fled to Switzerland shortly after the Nazis annexed Austria.

Klein also played clarinet, guitar and harmonica. He began his career when jazz was just taking hold in Vienna in the 1950s.

His career lasted over four decades and included collaborations with jazz greats Lionel Hampton, Wild Bill Davison, Bill Coleman and Dexter Gordon, as well as Fatty George, the Tremble Kids and the Dutch Swing College Orchestra.

In 1996, President Thomas Klestil presented Klein with Austria’s silver Medal of Honor.