David Crosby, pioneer of folk-rock, has died

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The legendary artist created a distinctively American musical style with the Byrds and superband Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

David Crosby, pioneer of folk-rock, died

File photo: Musician David Crosby at a benefit concert in Los Angeles October 3, 2012 (REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni)

David Crosby, influential musical pioneer of the 1960s and 1970s, has died at 81 years old, US media confirmed this Thursday.

The Variety magazine first reported, citing the singer's wife, Jan Dance, who said Crosby died after “a long illness”. Later, Rolling Stone quoted a source close to the musician to confirm his death.

“Although he is no longer here with us, his humanity and kind soul will continue to guide and inspire us. His legacy of him will live on through his legendary music ”, the statement from his wife says. “Peace, love and harmony to all who knew David and to those he touched. He will be sorely missed.”

The Byrds – Turn! turn! turn! (1965)

The California-born singer, guitarist and songwriter was the son of filmmaker Floyd Crosby. He began his musical career in childhood with his brother, to later develop his professional career with singer Roger McGuinn.

In 1964 Crosby and McGuinn formed The Byrds with musicians Gene Clark and Chris Hillman. The group gained great recognition a year later when they presented their version of the Bob Dylan classic “Mr. Tambourine Man”, which gave its name to their debut album, with songs like “Turn Turn Turn”.

Crosby was romantically involved with Canadian folk singer Joni Mitchell, who put him in touch with Neil Young and Stephen Stills.

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young-Down By The River (1970)

His affair with The Byrds culminated in his expulsion from the group in 1967. Later, Crosby founded with Stills and Graham Nash the folk band -rock Crosby, Stills & Nash, later joined by Canadian singer Neil Young.

The group gave their first concert as a trio at the Woodstock festival in 1969.

Although Young's accession meant the band's commercial success, with albums like “Deja Vu”, with hits like “Woodstock” and “Teach Your Children”, the group dissolved due to differences in egos.

Both bands were a key piece in the development of folk-rock and country-rock that originated in California and became popular in the 70s.

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – Almost cut my hair (1974)

Crosby continued as a soloist and the last album he presented was in 2021 under the name “For Free”.

On a personal level, the musician had addiction problems with alcohol and drugs for years. In fact, in 1982 he was arrested in Dallas (Texas) for possession of drugs and weapons, something for which he received a five-year prison sentence, although he only served five months behind bars.

In 1994, he had a liver transplant paid for by musician Phil Collins, after he was diagnosed with hepatitis C.

The two-time Rock n' Roll Hall of Famer he was a prolific artist throughout his life. Over six decades in the music industry, he created a rich variety of ballads and poignant songs. He was known as much for his alternate guitar tunings, lush harmonies, and abstract lyrics as he was for his war activism, brutal honesty, and dangerous way of life.

David Crosby, pioneer of folk-rock, died

David Crosby with Jan Dance at the 62nd Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on January 26, 2020 (REUTERS/Mike Blake)

At the news of his death It didn't take long for tributes to be poured in on social media.

“I don't know what to say except it breaks my heart to hear about David Crosby,” he tweeted < b>Brian Wilson, co-founder of the Beach Boys. “David was an incredible talent (…) a great singer and songwriter. And a wonderful person.”

Rocker Jason Isbell joined the message: “Grateful for the time we spent with David Crosby. We will miss him very much.”

With information from AFP and EFE

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