Keith Emerson, legendary keyboardist and co-founding member of the founding members of Emerson, Keith & Palmer, has passed away at the age of 71. The news was reported on the band’s Facebook page Friday afternoon (March 11th).
“We regret to announce that Keith Emerson died last night at his home in Santa Monica, Los Angeles, aged 71. We ask that the family’s privacy and grief be respected,” the post states.
Carl Palmer has released the following statement via his publicist Bruce Pilato.
“I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of my good friend and brother-in-music, Keith Emerson,” Palmer writes. “Keith was a gentle soul whose love for music and passion for his performance as a keyboard player will remain unmatched for many years to come. He was a pioneer and an innovator whose musical genius touched all of us in the worlds of rock, classical and jazz. I will always remember his warm smile, good sense of humor, compelling showmanship, and dedication to his musical craft. I am very lucky to have known him and to have made the music we did, together. Rest in peace, Keith.”
No cause of death has been revealed, but TMZ reports that Emerson’s death is being investigated as a suicide. According to law enforcement officials, Emerson’s girlfriend found him in their Santa Monica home with a single gunshot wound to the head. The report states that Emerson had been suffering from a degenerative nerve issue in his right hand that was getting worse and making it harder for him to play the keyboard.
Emerson, Lake & Palmer have not performed together since the band’s 40th anniversary in 2010.
Rest in peace, Keith. Our condolences to his family and band.
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.