Multiple outlets are reporting on the passing of Jeff Beck at the age of 78.
“On behalf of his family, it is with deep and profound sadness that we share the news of Jeff Beck’s passing,” a statement on Jeff Bekc’s social media sites said. “After suddenly contracting bacterial meningitis, he peacefully passed away yesterday. His family ask for privacy while they process this tremendous loss.”
Jeff Beck was one of a handful of guitarists to rise out of the British invasion, along with Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page, to form the roots of English rock and roll. He got his start on the world stage with the Yardbirds and went on to continue his prominence in his own the Jeff Beck Group.
His earlier work was part of the second generation of rock and roll, the transition from 1950s and early 1960s rock music to more interpretive rock music that was less reliant on a pop sound and helped to transform rock and roll into the guitar and drums juggernaut that was the foundation of late 1960s rock and roll.
Beck’s most recent musical projects have been with movie star Johnny Depp, both live and in the studio.
Over the course of decades Beck was nominated for some dozen Grammy awards, and gained the attention of any guitar player who was interested in both the roots and the limits of guitar playing.
1976 – Best Pop Instrumental Performance – Wired – (nominee)
1985 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “Escape” – (winner)
1989 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – Jeff Beck’s Guitar Shop with Terry Bozzio & Tony Hymas – (winner)
1992 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “Hound Dog” (track) – (nominee)
1993 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “Hi-Heel Sneakers” (track) – (nominee)
1999 – Best Pop Instrumental Performance – “A Day In The Life” (track) – (nominee)
1999 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “What Mama Said” (track) – (nominee)
2001 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “Dirty Mind” – (winner)
2003 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “Plan B” – (winner)
2009 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “A Day In The Life” – (winner)
2010 – Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals – “Imagine” – (winner)
2010 – Best Pop Instrumental Performance – “Nessun Dorma” – (winner)
2010 – Best Rock Instrumental Performance – “Hammerhead” – (winner)
2010 – Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals – “I Put A Spell On You” – (nominee)
2010 – Best Rock Album – Emotion & Commotion – (nominee)
2011 – Best Rock Album – Rock ‘N’ Roll Party Honoring Les Paul – (nominee)
Rolling Stone put Beck in the top 5 Guitarists of all time, and his combination of innovative playing and his use and innovation of equipment made him the guitar player’s guitar player.
Jeff Beck was an early inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was enshrined in 1992. He was credited as a quiet person, who expressed his emotions through his playing. He passed after a short battle with bacterial meningitis.
Other legends have already started to extend their condolences:
Jimmy Page, “His technique unique. His imaginations apparently limitless. Jeff I will miss you along with your millions of fans. Jeff Beck Rest in Peace.”
Jack Bruce (of Cream) “RIP one of the greats, Jeff Beck. The Bruce family would like to extend our sincere love and condolences to @jeffbeckmusic’s family, friends and fans around the world.”
Steve Hackett (Genesis) “Devastating news about the loss of much loved, influential guitar legend Jeff Beck. He made the electric guitar sing… a powerful influence on myself and many others.”
Fareed Haque (Garaj Mahal, Chicago Immigrant Orchestra) “Singular genius. Such a loss.”
Our condolences go out to his family, friends, and fans. Beck was a one of a kind player, never loving his love for his instrument and putting the music first above all else.
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