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Thread: RIP Jeff Healey

  1. #1

    RIP Jeff Healey

    From the AP via Yahoo! News:
    TORONTO - Blind rock and jazz musician Jeff Healey has died after a lifelong battle against cancer. He was 41.

    Healey died Sunday evening in a Toronto hospital, said bandmate Colin Bray, who was in the room with Healey's family when the guitarist died.

    The Grammy-nominated Healey rose to stardom as the leader of the Jeff Healey Band, a rock-oriented trio that gained international acclaim and platinum record sales with the 1988 album "See the Light." The album included the hit single "Angel Eyes."

    Healey had battled cancer since age 1, when a rare form of retinal cancer known as Retinoblastoma claimed his eyesight.

    Due to his blindness, Healey taught himself to play guitar by laying the instrument across his lap.

    His unique playing style, combined with his blues-oriented vocals, earned him a reputation as a teenage musical prodigy. He shared stages with George Harrison, B.B. King and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

    Bray said he and many others expected the guitarist to rally from this latest illness.

    "I don't think any of us thought this was going to happen," Bray said. "We just thought he was going to bounce back as he always does."

    Healey had undergone numerous operations in recent years to remove tumors from his lungs and leg.

    Bray and fellow bandmate Gary Scriven remembered their frontman as a musician of rare abilities with a generous nature and wicked sense of humor.

    Healey's true love was jazz, the genre that dominated his three most recent albums.

    His love of jazz led him to host radio shows in Canada where he spun long-forgotten numbers from his personal collection of over 30,000 vinyl records.

    His death came weeks before the release of his first rock album in eight years.

    "Mess of Blues" is slated for a North American release on April 22.

    He is survived by his wife, Christie, and two children.
    This came as a bit of a shock. The man was a genius with the guitar. I also didn't realize he was so young.

    It doesn't mention in the article, but he appeared in Roadhouse as well.

    He will be missed.

    Tommy, close your eyes.

  2. #2
    Wow... he had a difficult life in some regards. He was an amazing musician!
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  3. #3
    I heard the news on the local rock station here in Chicago. Truely sad. THey said he was battling cancer for his whole life, and it was the cancer that left him blind. Then they played his song "Angel eyes".
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  4. #4
    Such a shame. I didn't realize he was that young either. He was one of the most gifted musicians I've ever listened to.

  5. #5

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    "The name's Dalton."

    Aside from Angel Eyes and Roadhouse i really didn't know much about him. Sounds that he was much more talented than i'd imagined. Sorry to hear none the less...

  6. #6
    Bet, he didn't see it coming.

    Seriously though RIP kid, you were an inspiration to many & you'll be missed dearly.

  7. #7
    I was blasting the entire See the Light album today. He was amazing.

    He didn't write "Angel Eyes," but he topped the original. Topping the equally underrated John Hiatt is no small task. No small task at all.
    Tommy, close your eyes.

  8. #8
    A close friend of mine was personally employed by Mr.Healey up til I guess yesterday, he was the sound guy at Healey's jazz club. I planned to go there this summer to meet him but I guess that ain';t gonna happen. Never heard ANYTHING but great things about him, a gentle dude with KILLER chops- strange thing too, he never seemd to have said ANYTHING about his illness, I guiess he'd rather the shock hit all at once rather than have anyone worried about him, which is nuts.


    (And DB, I know for a fact that had he heard your comment he would have laughed his arse off, his sense of humour was keen)
    Something about him reminds me of my older brother, Rex.

  9. #9
    Funny, but even as a Canadian (where I think he had at least a bit more exposure over the years) it was his turn in Roadhouse that came to my mind first as well. Odd.


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