Legendary keyboardist, Keith of Emerson of Emerson, Lake & Palmer has died at the age of 71. The band released news of his passing earlier today on the band’s Facebook page.
A statement reads: “We regret to announce that Keith Emerson died last night at his home in Santa Monica, Los Angeles, aged 71. We ask that the family’s privacy and grief be respected.”
The cause of death has not been announced. However, it is being reported on TMZ that Emerson shot himself in the head due to depression stemming from a degenerative disease that was causing him to only be able to play keys with 8 fingers.
His bandmate, drummer Carl Palmer posted a message on his website:
“I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of my good friend and brother-in-music, Keith Emerson.
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.
I will always remember his warm smile, good sense of humor, compelling showmanship, and dedication to his musical craft.
I am very lucky to have known him and to have made the music we did, together. Rest in peace, Keith.”