David Crosby, one of the most influential rock singers of the 1960s and 70s with the Byrds and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (CSNY), has died at 81, Variety said on Thursday (January 19), citing a report from Crosby’s wife.
“It is with great sadness after a long illness, that our beloved David (Croz) Crosby has passed away” Variety quoted his wife, Jan Dance, as the statement says. Crosby’s UK-based representatives could only once be reached for comment.
CSNY describes the smooth side of the Woodstock generation’s music, and the Byrds, for whom Crosby co-wrote “Eight Miles High.” Crosby co-founded two revered rock bands: the country and folk-influenced Byrds and CSNY. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as an associate of both groups. Musically, Crosby stood out for his intricate vocal harmonies, unorthodox open tunings on the guitar, and intelligent songwriting. His work with the Byrds and CSN/CSNY combined rock and folk in new ways, and their music became a part of the soundtrack for the hippie era.
Privately, Crosby was the embodiment of the doctrine “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll,” and a 2014 Rolling Stone Magazine article tagged him as “rock’s unlikeliest survivor.”
In complement to drug addictions that eventually led to a transplant to replace a liver worn out by decades of excess, his wildlife included:
–A severe motorcycle accident.
–The death of a girlfriend.
–Battles against hepatitis C and diabetes.
He also alienated many famous former bandmates, for which he often expressed remorse in recent years.