April 19, 2024

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Jackson Browne mourns ‘genius’ guitarist David Lindley – Billboard

Jackson Browne mourns ‘genius’ guitarist David Lindley – Billboard

Following the death of prominent Los Angeles-based instrumentalist David Lindley at the age of 78 on March 3, longtime collaborator Jackson Browne shared his thoughts in a heartbreaking statement shared with painting.



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The talented musician — whose guitar and violin skills have made him a collaborator with icons like Brown, Dolly Parton, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Rod Stewart and others — has been ill for several months, according to Los Angeles Times. The cause of death was not mentioned.

Read Brown’s full appreciation of Lindley below in his own words, as he recalls the history of their remarkable personal and professional relationship, and qualities he will always remember about his late friend.

David Lindley, the guitarist, steelpanist and violinist who gave his personality and inspiration to many of my songs, passed away on March 3. The outpouring of love and widespread recognition of his mastery was very touching. I want to join in the boisterous chorus of appreciation for his gifts, but nothing I write sounds good enough. Words weren’t enough to describe what David Lindley brought to the song.

I played David for the first time in the Troubadour’s locker room in 1969. My friend Jimmy Faden of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band brought him over to say hello, and noted that David had a lot of talking to him, saying he’d probably sit down if I asked him. I already knew him from the band Kaleidoscope, whose debut album, Side Trips, was one of my favorite records.

We started playing These Days, and my world changed. His playing was very emotional and immediate – he just cast a spell on me and everyone there. It didn’t matter that he hadn’t heard the song before. What he was playing made it more emotional and real than it seemed in the years I played it on my own.

David was in England playing with Terry Reid when I made my first album. When he came back, she tried to put together a touring band with him, but it didn’t go over well as it was just the two of them. I decided we’d tour this way, as a duo, even though there was one song in the charts that required drums, bass, and congas to play properly. We didn’t even play it. We played a lot of songs I’d written up until then, some old songs we both knew, songs that friends wrote. In the end, I did a band with him, and it was a rich and diverse musical environment. We co-headlined a nationwide tour with Bonnie Raitt. That was the band on my third album, Late For The Sky.

David is a huge part of me – who I became and who I remain. No one has ever played like him. In my later band, after David left to form El Rayo – X, we would play with the structure of the songs, based on what he played, but it was, and still is today, for players to call their songs. Lindley Nature. good luck! It is very good. He didn’t play the same thing every time. He was always exploring, always hearing something new. Always in the moment.

David’s musical interests were so divergent, and his genius so obvious, he attracted and performed with many of the great artists of our time. Ray Cooder, Linda Ronstadt, Graham Nash and David Crosby, Warren Zevon, Bonnie Wright, James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen. But his band, El Rayo – X, became the fertile and rich environment that gave him free rein to develop and blend his influences, creating the unique composition that will now and forever be known as David Lindley.

With Henry Kaiser, David continued the exploration of world music that he had begun on Kaleidoscope. I am grateful to Henry for posting Requiem by David Lindley, and for all the other posts and clips on the Internet that bear witness to the many different cultures that David conveys, weaving them into one world.

My private world was shattered by David’s death. He was my friend and mentor. It has been a pleasure and a certainty to revisit our special relationship over the years. I guess I thought he would always be around.

I’ve been struggling to write and post something for the past two weeks. It was hard to start, hard to conclude, I guess, because I didn’t want to let him go. David was so nice to everyone and so funny. Unable to utter a dishonorable word or play a dishonest tune. There will be tribute concerts and a documentary about it for sure. There will be ways to continue celebrating his life. And we all know there will never be another David Lindley.