Mann, who had battled prostate cancer since 1997, died late Tuesday, according to a friend, Sy Johnson. A funeral home in Santa Fe said it was making arrangements with Mann’s family.

Mann had moved to Santa Fe in the late 1980s after spending most of his life in his native New York City.

Mann always performed different styles, then combined them. He did bebop and cool jazz, and toured Africa, Brazil and Japan listening for new music.

“I just think he was a wonderful Pied Piper of jazz, drawing our attention what’s happening around the world and the country,” said Johnson, a New York City composer who had known Mann for some 40 years. He called Mann “a guy who loved music of all kinds an and eager to explore it all.”

Family of Mann, formed in 1973, played world music before it was called that. Mann’s best-selling Memphis Underground was a founding recording of fusion.

If a genie offered Mann anything he wanted, he said in a 1995 Associated Press interview, he would choose a big band including three rhythm sections for straight-ahead jazz, Brazilian music and soul.

“I’d be able to play all that music; I wouldn’t have to play any one thing all the time,” he said. “And I would always like to try to evolve the music to another step. Once you reach the point where you play it perfectly in a genre, to me it gets boring. Then I want to try to evolve by combining things.”

When he left Atlantic Records in 1979 he started producing his own records, and later he launched his own label, Kokopelli. In all, he made more than 100 albums as leader.

Touring, he said, was “a killer, the hours and food. I always thought if you made good records your records could do the traveling for you.”

Album titles reflect Mann’s versatility: At the Village Gate (1962); African Suite (1959); Brasil, Bossa Nova & Blues (1962); Latin Mann 1965; Memphis Two Step (1971); and Eastern European Roots (2000).

“As much as I love music, I never really thought it was my life. I thought it was the vehicle I used to express my life,” he said.

Born Herbert Solomon in Brooklyn in 1930, he started his career when he was 15, playing in groups at Catskill Mountain resorts for the summer. He studied saxophone but preferred flute. In the 1950s, after three years in the Army playing with the Army Band in Trieste, Italy, Mann toured France and Scandinavia.

He credited visits to Africa and Brazil in the early 1960s with changing his musical outlook.

“When I came back (from Africa), I hired (Babatunde) Olatunji, a Nigerian drummer living here, and we started doing music based on African motifs,” he told the AP.

As for the Brazil tour, he said, “Revelation doesn’t touch it. Up to that point, the ethnic music I had heard had 14 drums playing different parts but the melodies were very simple. Then I saw the ‘Black Orpheus’ movie and heard multiple rhythm parts along with the most beautiful melodies in the world.”

He returned and recorded with Brazilian musicians, including Antonio Carlos Jobim and a 19-year-old Sergio Mendes.

His last live gig was May 3 at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, where “he got a standing ovation for five minutes,” Johnson said.

“He had a lot of plans,” Johnson said. “His time may have been limited and he knew it, but he was a man of energy and an active life that would constantly churn up things.”

Johnson said Mann is survived by his wife, Janeal Arison; sons Paul and Geoff; daughters Claudia Mann-Basler and Laura Mann; his mother, Ruth Solomon; and a sister, Judy Burnstein.