Glenn Frey, guitarist and founding member of the Eagles, has died in New York at the age of 67.
The news was confirmed by the band in a statement on their official website on Monday afternoon.
It states that ”Glenn fought a courageous battle for the past several weeks but, sadly, succumbed to complications from Rheumatoid Arthritis, Acute Ulcerative Colitis and Pneumonia,” adding that ”words can neither describe our sorrow, nor our love and respect for all that he has given to us, his family, the music community & millions of fans worldwide.”
Eagles co-founder, Don Henley was among the first to pay tribute to his bandmate, saying that Frey was like a brother to him, and that they were family and experienced some dysfunction but the bond they forged 45 years ago was never broken, even during the 14 years the Eagles were dissolved.
Frey and Henley became one of history’s most successful songwriting teams with well known hits such as ”Hotel California” and ”Life in the Fast Lane.”
Henley credit’s Frey with starting it all, calling him ”the spark plug, the man with the plan,” who had ”an encyclopedic knowledge of popular music and a work ethic that wouldn’t quit.”
The pair formed the Eagles in LA in 1971, along with guitarist Bernie Leadon and bassist Randy Meisner, the band went on to sell more than 150 million albums worldwide, with Hotel California and their greatest hits among the best selling in history.
The Eagles first run together came to an end in 1980, with Frey going on to enjoy success as a solo artist, penning hits such as ”The Heat Is On” and ”Smuggler’s Blues,” before the band reformed in 1994 and became a staple one again on the touring scene.
Meanwhile, a host of celebrities have taken to Twitter to express their condolences and pay tribute.
I was shocked to hear about Glenn Frey passing away – it was a real blow to hear. Love & Mercy to Glenn’s family tonight. – Brian
— Brian Wilson (@BrianWilsonLive) January 19, 2016
Glenn Frey, founding member of the Eagles, a band I just loved, has died. His songs, those sounds, perfectly captured those days. 70s LA…
— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) January 19, 2016
— Tim McGraw (@TheTimMcGraw) January 19, 2016
MT: Shocker. My friend from the early days, and important member of Eagles, has died. We loved you, Glenn Frey.
— Steve Martin (@SteveMartinToGo) January 18, 2016
Glen Frey created the soundtrack of my life and was one of the nicest men I’ve ever met. Devastated.
— Rob Lowe (@RobLowe) January 18, 2016