Turbinton, 65, had suffered from lung cancer for some time, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune reported. He died in Baton Rouge.
Inspired by Cannonball Adderley and John Coltrane, Turbinton was one of the founders in 1969 of The Workshop, a club on Decatur Street. He hoped the club would become a local center for the avant-garde in jazz.
During his career, he worked with B.B. King and his brother, Wilson "Willie Tee" Turbinton. The brothers recorded "Brothers for Life" in 1988.