J. Geils dies aged 71
J. Geils, the founder of The J. Geils Band, has died at the age of 71.
The American guitarist – famous for the group’s 1981 classic ‘Centerfold’, which topped the US Billboard Hot 100 in February 1982, and stayed there for six weeks – was found dead at his home in Groton, Massachusetts, on Tuesday (11.04.17).
The Boston Globe reports that the musician – whose full name was John Warren ‘J.’ Geils Jr. – died of natural causes and that the police department will still be investigating his death, though foul play was not suspected.
Geils founded the group – who had hits with ‘Must Of Got Lost’, ‘Love Stinks’ and ‘Come Back’ – in 1967, and quit the group in 2012 over a legal dispute.
During their five-decade career they have been nominated four times for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but have never been inducted.
The blues rockers, also including Magic Dick, Danny Klein, Seth Justman and Peter Wolf, originally split up the year after their last record, ‘You’re Gettin’ Even While I’m Gettin’ Odd’, which was released in 1984.
In 1999, they reunited for the odd reunion show, but without Geils, who sued the rest of the band for using the group’s name and for touring under it without him.
He managed to trademark the name in the nasty legal battle, but they vowed to fight it and perform as The J. Geils Band.
Despite their ups and downs, Peter – who fronted the group from 1967 to 1983 – paid a touching tribute to Geils on hearing of his passing.
He wrote on his Facebook page: "Thinking of all the times we kicked it high and rocked down the house! R.I.P. Jay Geils" PW (sic)"