By NICHOLAS MARTIN CBS NEWS/CBS NEWS (AP) Sonny Rollins died Thursday at age 95, his longtime music manager said.
Rollins’ agent, David Smith, confirmed the news, adding that Rollins had been ill since November.
Rollins, who also was a singer and songwriter, died in New York, according to his manager.
The news was first reported by Rolling Stone magazine.
Rollins had lived in New Jersey for more than 40 years and was known for a number of hits.
He recorded with a variety of artists, including Willie Nelson, Pete Seeger and John Lee Hooker.
He also worked with some of the most famous musicians of the last half-century, including The Byrds, Billy Joel, Eric Clapton and Neil Young.
His son, Peter Rollins, said his father’s music would be remembered for decades.
“He was the first great American composer,” Peter Rollins said in a statement.
“It was a gift to generations of generations of music lovers.”
A concert he did at Carnegie Hall in April 2016 was held in honor of Rollins.
Rollins died peacefully at home in Manhattan, according, his manager, David Harris, who said he had been informed by the family.
“We ask for the privacy of our family during this difficult time,” Harris said.
“Sonny will be sorely missed.”
Rollins was born in Newark, New Jersey, and began playing music as a young boy.
He was raised by his mother, Helen (Mary) Rollins, a schoolteacher who taught music at her church.
Rollins later married his second wife, Joan, and had a son, Tony, in 1968.
He died in 1986 at age 73.
He has been a Grammy-nominated composer and a popular artist for decades and a fixture on the pop music scene.
He won four Grammy Awards and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.
Rollins has written or co-written more than 400 songs, and the collection of his recordings, the Sonny Rollins Collection, is estimated to have sold more than 5 million copies worldwide.
Rollins was known as a gifted improviser and an expert performer, but his music is also a tribute to the art of improvisation and improvisation itself.
The songs include hits such as “All Along the Watchtower,” “Mama Tried,” “Little Man” and “Boredom Blues.”
His work often includes elements of folk, jazz and classical.
His most popular works include “Swingin’ in the Rain,” “I Wanna Dance,” “Crazy Days” and the “Frosty the Snowman.”
His most recent work, “Sandy,” was released in 2014 and earned the Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance.
The album was a Top 10 hit and his son wrote the song’s lyrics.
Rollins released his first solo album in 1962, “Dance with Me.”
The collection has sold more, more than 8 million copies, Harris said in the statement.
Rollins collaborated with some notable artists, such as The Beatles and David Bowie.
The group, the Grateful Dead, performed Rollins’ songs at its concerts.
Rollins is survived by his son, Pete Rollins.
“I’m deeply saddened to hear of his passing,” John Lennon said in an email to the Associated Press.
“The music he made with The Beatles will always be special to me.
Sonny was one of the greatest guitarists and songwriters of his generation.
His music has touched countless lives and we all will miss him immensely.”
Rollins had a career that spanned more than 50 years.
He first began playing guitar at age 9 in Newark.
Rollins went on to record with the Byrds and was featured in “Little Boy Blues,” “The Blues Brothers” and other hits.
Rollins recorded with the Rolling Stones, as well as a number for artists including Frank Sinatra, John Coltrane, Bing Crosby, The Who, Johnny Cash and the Beach Boys.
He wrote several solo albums, including “Sister Mary” and many songs that were released as singles.
Rollins also recorded songs for the Beatles and others, including a number by John Lennon.
Rollins and his band played at the Grammy Awards in 1969.
The band was nominated for five Grammy Awards, including Best Rock Performance and Best Rock Song.
Rollins performed at the White House and at Capitol Hall in Washington.
He sang at the 1964 Republican National Convention and at the Democratic National Convention in 1972.
Rollins won a Grammy Award in 1984 for the song “Sugar,” which he co-wrote with The Beach Boys bassist John Martin.
He earned two Grammy Awards for his work on the albums “Rocksong,” “Sweet Dreams” and, most recently, “Little Baby.”
Rollins died from complications from a stroke at his home in Newburyport, Massachusetts, on Friday.
Rollins grew up in a devout Baptist family in Newark and graduated from a private Catholic high school.
He later studied music at the New York University School of Music, and also recorded his own songs.
Rollins became a