Society

Guitarist John Warren Geils Jr. Found Dead At Age 71 (Photo)

| by Jonathan Constante

John Warren Geils Jr., founder and guitarist of the The J. Geils Band, has been found dead in his Massachusetts home at age 71.

Geils was found unresponsive at his home in Groton, Massachusetts, around 4 p.m. on April 11, the Daily Mail reported. Authorities made the discovery while conducting a welfare check.

Police do not suspect any foul play at this time.

"A preliminary investigation indicates that Geils died of natural causes," police said in a statement, according to WCVB.

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Geils started The J. Geils Band in 1967. He was a student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The group was comprised of Stephen Jo Bladd, Danny Klein, "Magic" Dick Salwitz, Peter Wolf and Seth Justman.

Together, the band released 12 studio albums before going their separate ways in 1985. They reunited off and on again up until recent years.

One of their most successful singles was the song "Centerfold" from the album "Freeze Frame," which was released in 1981. The song eventually took the No. 1 spot on the  U.S. Billboard Hot 100 in February of the following year. It stayed on top for six weeks, and was featured on MTV.

The band's other top 40 singles included a cover song, "Lookin' for a Love" by The Valentinos, "Give It to Me," "Must of Got Lost" and "Love Stinks," which was the title song on their 1980 album.  

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Their song, "Must of Got Lost," was also successful on the charts, reaching No. 12 on the Billboard's Top 100 in 1975.

The J. Geils Band released a total of 12 albums over the course of 10 years. While on tour, their opening acts included some of the all-time greats such as Billy Joel, The Eagles, U2 and ZZ Top.

Peter Wolf took to Facebook to pay tribute to his former band mate.

"Thinking of all the times we kicked it high and rocked down the house! R.I.P Jay Geils," Wolf wrote.

The band was recently nominated for the fourth time to join the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but was not selected as part of the 2017 class.

"This is our fourth nomination, and going through that process, with its inherent disappointment, you're not sure you want to take that ride again," Wolf told Billboard at the time. "It's great to be recognized, but it's a drag to be disappointed. I hope that we make it in. That would be great."

Sources: Daily Mail, WCVB, Peter Wolf/Facebook / Photo credit: Boston GlobePeter Wolf/Facebook

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