Bacterial meningitis has robbed us of one of the greatest guitarists the world has or ever will hear. Jeff Beck passed away yesterday (1/10/2023) in a hospital. A representative issued a release today that read, in part, “On behalf of his family, it is with deep and profound sadness that we share the news of Jeff Beck’s passing. After suddenly contracting bacterial meningitis, he peacefully passed away yesterday. His family ask for privacy while they process this tremendous loss.”
The guitar titan was 78. Considered to be the GOAT guitarist by plenty of other guitar greats, the avalanche of accolades in response to the unexpected news from fellow musicians came as no surprise.
Warren Haynes posted, "I’m devastated. People ask me a lot “who’s your favorite living guitarist?” and the answer would always have to be Jeff Beck. So much so that I’ve always made a point of being careful not to listen to him too much for fear of wanting to imitate him. I was lucky, thanks to my older brothers, to have discovered Beck at a very early age, even before I started playing guitar. He was ferocious — not just inventive but totally unique. Nobody played like that. I loved everything he did."
Billy Gibbons commented on the loss, "met Jeff Beck when I was 17 and I was glad to know a guy like that, a guy who was able to show me how this guitar playing thing should be approached and that’s still very much the case. Jeff was a wondrous soul and we already miss him tremendously. We are comforted in the fact that he’ll be with us forever. Hi Ho Silver Lining!"
Sammy Hagar wrote, "Absolutely one of my favorite guitarists of all time! The "Truth" album changed my life. As a singer and guitarist, I wanted to be Jeff Beck and Rod Stewart rolled into one— we all did. What a loss. We will all miss Jeff. My love and condolences to his family and loved ones."
Nancy Wilson proclaimed, "
Jeff Beck inspired so much of my life as a musician. Heart opened for him back in the day and standing side stage every night was like taking dictation from the ultimate rock muse.
We saw him playing various shows along the way and never walked away less than mind blown.
There will never be another rock musician who will come even close to his genius.
Rest in rock power.
Long live the king!"
David Gilmour wrote, "I am devastated to hear the news of the death of my friend and hero Jeff Beck, whose music has thrilled and inspired me and countless others for so many years."
Ozzy Osbourne posted, "I can’t express how saddened I am to hear of Jeff Beck's passing. What a terrible loss for his family, friends & his many fans. It was such an honor to have known Jeff & an incredible honor to have had him play on my most recent album."
Photo Matt Gibbons CC 2.0