A pioneer of the smooth jazz genre who was prolific composer, with hits including "Reed Seed" and "Black Frost." he released the solo album Inner City Blues.
He received his first saxophone when he was the age of eight and went on to become a freelance musician in New York.
Washington's big break happened when he had the opportunity to record for Creed Taylor's Kudu Records because Hank Crawford did not show up.
He was born in Buffalo and was raised by a saxophonist and a church chorister.
He collaborated with Bill Withers on the Grammy Award-winning song "Just the Two of Us."