Mar 02, 2008 08:28 PM
Canadian rock and jazz musician Jeff Healey died Sunday in a Toronto hospital after a battle with cancer, his publicist said.

He was 41.

Healey's battle with cancer began at age one when he lost his sight due to Retinoblastoma, a rare form of retinal cancer.

Due to his blindness, Healey taught himself to play guitar by laying the instrument across his lap.

His unique playing style, combined with his blues-oriented vocals, earned him a reputation as a teenage musical prodigy. He shared stages with George Harrison, B.B. King and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

But Healey's true love was jazz, the genre that dominated his three most recent albums.

His death came weeks before the release of his first rock album in eight years.

Mess of Blues is slated for a North American release on April 22.

Much of Healey's commercial success came as the frontman for the Jeff Healey Band, a Juno-winning act that achieved platinum record sales in the United States with the 1988 record See the Light.

Despite deteriorating record sales in the 1990's, Healey kept busy with radio shows on the CBC and a local Toronto jazz station where he spun long-forgotten classics from his personal collection of more than 30,000 vinyl records.

The Grammy-nominated musician is survived by his wife Christie and two children.
Rocking the free world one step at a time!
Rip Jeff! We Will Never Forget You!
Quote by killbox2490
HOLY S**T! There is a switch hahahahahha. Thanks Red Wing. Now you're probably going to quote me for being so retarded

Are you fucking kidding me? That sucks so much. I was just listening to him today and saying to myself how much of a beast he was on guitar. This is so sad.
Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day
You fritter and waste the hours in an offhand way
Kicking around on a piece of ground in your home town
Waiting for someone or something to show you the way
Just shocked!! Every body likes to list the greatest guitar players ... Page, Clapton, SRV, Hendrix ... etc ...

Healey has always been at the top of the list for me. He was discovered by SRV in Toronto and if you do a quick search on youtube you can see him playing with SRV .. holding his own.

Play on Jeff!! Thanks for sharing your wicked skills with us!
My prayers are with his family and friends.

"The light that burns twice as bright, lasts half as long"

He will be missed. I have never seen anyone play a strat across his lap and absolutely jam! He was one of a kind!
I was very sad to hear about this. Gutted I missed the opportunity to see him when he played here now. A fantastic guitarist with a great voice. He'll be missed.
Encore God & Asomodai- UG JHS Brotherhood

Encore God: fighting UG Zeppelin-centrism since 2002.
this is so sad. Words fail me.

I've been imitated so well I've heard people copy my mistakes.
- Jimi Hendrix
An amazing guitar player to watch performing.
He's been through a lot of physical suffering these past years.
RIP Jeff.