Rolling Stones Sax Player Bobby Keys Dies at 70

Rolling Stones Sax Player Bobby Keys Dies at 70


Entertainment Weekly / Jonathan Dornbush

Bobby Keys, the saxophone player who performed with the Rolling Stones on many of their biggest hits, along with other acts like The Who, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and John Lennon, died on Dec. 2 at age 70.

Keys passed away in his home in Franklin, Tenn., according to The Associated Press, who spoke to keyboardist and Keys collaborator Michael Webb.

Keys is perhaps most famous for his saxophone solo on the Stones’ “Brown Sugar,” but also contributed to other famous songs from the band, including “Can’t You Hear Me Knockin’” and “Sweet Virginia.” Keys had been out on tour with the Stones earlier this year but his health eventually prohibited him from performing.

“I have lost the largest pal in the world, and I can’t express the sense of sadness I feel, although Bobby would tell me to cheer up,” Keith Richards said in a statement to the AP.

Keys began performing with the band in the 1960s, and would go on to play for another of other major acts, including Barbara Streisand and Eric Clapton.

“Bobby made a unique musical contribution to the band since the 1960s. He will be greatly missed,” the Stones said in a joint statement.

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