UPDATE: 14/03/16: Keith Emerson’s death has officially been ruled a suicide by police. If you or anyone closest to you is struggling, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit their official website.
Keith Emerson, founding member of ’70s prog-rock band Emerson, Lake and Palmer has passed away at the age of 71.
“We regret to announce that Keith Emerson died last night at his home in Santa Monica, Los Angeles, aged 71,” a statement posted to the trio’s Facebook page reads.
TMZ is reporting that Emerson died from a single gunshot wound to the head and his death is being investigated as suicide.
Emerson is regarded as one of the best keyboardists of the ’70s. He rose to prominence in ’60s band Nice before joining with well regarded musicians Greg Lake and Carl Palmer to form prog-rock supergroup Emerson, Lake & Palmer.
In 1971 the band scored a number one album in the UK with their second effort Tarkus. While the band broke-up in 1979 after seven albums, they have reformed a number of times with Emerson and Palmer occasionally touring as a duo throughout the ’90s and ’00s.
Following the band’s breakup Emerson also went on to release solo albums and score movies like 1980’s Inferno and 1984’s Murder Rock.
Bandmate Palmer has taken to his website to express his grief over Emerson’s passing.
“I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of my good friend and brother-in-music, Keith Emerson,” he wrote.
“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.”
Listen: Emerson, Lake & Palmer – Lucky Man