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After news circulated Tuesday evening that J. Geils Band co-founder, guitarist, and namesake John Warren Geils Jr. had died at the age of 71, it did not take long for his former bandmate and frontman Peter Wolf to pay tribute.
Thinking of all the times we kicked it high and rocked down the house! R.I.P. Jay Geils pic.twitter.com/r3v50eQZ2w
— Peter Wolf (@PeterWolf_Woofa) April 12, 2017
As confirmed by multiple news outlets, Geils body was discovered in his home in Groton, Massachusetts on Tuesday (April 11). Police have ruled out foul play and Geils is believed to have died of natural causes.
Together, Wolf and Geils were part of one of the most successful and beloved bands to come out of Massachusetts. Here’s some background from American Blues Scene:
“During the 1960s [Geils] studied mechanical engineering at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute even as he was involved in a trio that included bassist Danny Klein and harmonica player Richard ‘Magic Dick’ Salwitz, called Snoopy and the Sopwith Camels. After a move to Boston, the group added singer Peter Wolf and drummer Stephen Jo Bladd and changed the name of the group to the J. Geils Band. Later they added keyboard player Seth Justman and issued their eponymous debut album in 1970 having been signed to the Atlantic label that year.
Eventually, the band scored three Top 40 titles over the next several years including ‘Give It to Me,’ ‘Looking for Love,’ and ‘Must of Got Lost.’ In 1980 the band issued their Love Stinks album, and Freeze Frame followed in 1981. Freeze Frame included the number one single ‘Centerfold,’ which lifted the album up the charts.”
Wolf eventually went on to a solo career, while Geils officially parted ways with J. Geils Band in 2012. Both remained active in various music scenes, with Wolf frequently playing around Massachusetts. The J. Geils Band have been nominated for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame on four occasions.
J. Geils Band photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images.