Mountain legend Leslie West dead at 75


Leslie West, the legendary guitarist, vocalist and original founding member of MOUNTAIN, died at the age of 75.

Lesliebrother of, Larry West Weinstein, confirmed the musician’s move to Rolling Stone.

West suffered cardiac arrest at his home near Daytona, Florida, on Monday (December 21) and was rushed to a hospital, where he never regained consciousness.

Earlier today, Dean Guitars, with whom West has had an endorsement contract for several years, issued a statement, saying: “With a heavy heart, we are sad to hear about the death of #Dean Artist and part of Dean family, Leslie West. Legendary and unique. Rest in peace.”

Dean Guitars CEO Evan Rubinson added in a separate tweet: “For a man I really loved more than most – the funniest, most honest guy I have ever met. #RIP #LeslieWest”

The news from WestThe deteriorating health of was first broken by his brother, who accepted his Facebook page on Monday to say this Leslie he was seriously ill and close to death after his heart stopped and he was put on a respirator.

“I am asking for all your prayers,” Weinstein wrote in a deleted post. “[Leslie‘s wife] Jenni is by your side in Florida, but it doesn’t look good. thanks Jenni, he wouldn’t have made it this far without you. “

Weinstein he continued, saying, “His heart has stopped and he’s on the respirator. He may not survive the night.”

Earlier today, TWISTED SISTER singer Dee Snider, who is a friend of Leslie and Jenni, and is in contact with the family, tweeted: “The final hours in this land for the incredible Leslie West of MOUNTAIN. Your voice and guitar will be silenced, but your music will live forever. I’m heartbroken. Prayers for him and his incredible wife, his rock, Jenni who’s with him now. @lwestmountain “.

Snider started to recognize Westthe huge influence of rock music, writing: “Leslie West and MOUNTAIN is one of the founders of heavy metal. His explosive and powerful guitar and deep solos helped define the genre. Participating in guitarist meetings with Leslie I saw ALL the guitarists bow before him (yes, even @eddievanhalen) … And his influence on HIP HOP (you heard me!) Is undeniable. Your song Long Read was sampled on more than 750 hip hop tracks, including Problems with Jay-Z 99. What an incredible force @lwestmountain was! “

Born Leslie Weinstein, West won world recognition for the first time in 1969 as a guitarist and singer in an innovative rock band MOUNTAIN. Included among Lesliemany fans and disciples are six-string luminaries, as Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhoads, John McLaughlin, JETHRO TULLin Martin Barre, Warren Haynes and Ritchie Blackmore of DEEP PURPLE. Blackmore stated that Leslieis phenomenal playing in “Queen of Mississippi” served to redirect the course of DEEP PURPLEof the music in an instant, resulting in the intensity of the brutal hard rock displayed in “Deep Purple In Rock”.

For Barre, meeting Leslie in 1970 it served to inspire writing and play JETHRO TULLthe most successful album in the band’s history, “Aqualung”. “Before entering the studio to record [1971’s] ‘Aqualung’, I met Leslie, whose playing I just loved, ” Barre revealed. “Leslie is well known for his association with Les Paul Juniors, and shortly after meeting him, I bought a 1958 Junior because its sound was incredible. I would say that he is the only guitarist who has directly influenced me. “

Leslie was also influential in the development of music for WHOmasterpiece of, “Who is next”. In early 1971, he was invited to record with WHO to the band’s first New York City Record plan sessions for the album, which generated a close friendship with WHOleader of, Pete Townshend. Said Pete: “Leslie gave me a really great Les Paul Junior with a pickup for me to use ‘Who is next’and Eric Clapton gave me an old Strat. They both gave me really good instruments and I still have those instruments today. Along with my Gretsch Chet Atkins, these three guitars were the only ones I used ‘Who is next’. “

Another fan of Leslieit was none other than Jimi Hendrix, with whom Leslie crowded in famous New York clubs like Ungano’s and elsewhere.

“I met Jimi while I was recording ‘Climbing!’ at the Record plan and he was in another room mixing ‘Band Of Gypsys’, ” Leslie remembered. “Jimi came in, and after hearing the first track, ‘Never in my life’, he looked at me and said, ‘This is a great riff, man.’ I started to shake! There’s a great picture of us playing together at Ungano’s, and Jimiare playing Felix [Pappalardi‘s] serious. Meet and play with Hendrix it’s one of my biggest life experiences. “

A life-threatening battle with the cost of diabetes West most of his right leg in 2011.

“I’m lucky I didn’t have one of my hands or I would be screwed”, West he said later. “It was a tough fight, and after the amputation I didn’t know if I would want to or be able to perform again. But a month later I touched the Rock ‘N’ Roll Fantasy Camp in New York, and I heard my guitar on stage and that was it. I knew I had to continue. “

In 2009, West married his wife Jenni. They exchanged vows on the stage of Woodstock 40th anniversary concert. West credited her with saving his life – first with his love, and then for making the difficult decision to allow his doctors to amputate while he was in a coma.


Leslie West

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