Ronnie Montrose: Last Message To Fans

Ronnie's widow reveals guitar icon's note of gratitude at star-studded tribute concert two months after he shot himself.

Ronnie Montrose: Last Message To Fans
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Ronnie Montrose's widow has revealed a message he wrote to his fans soon before committing suicide in March. The public had at first been allowed to assume the guitarist's death on March 3 was related to his prostate cancer battle but police believed the tragedy was not straightforward. It was subsequently confirmed he'd shot himself in his garage at home in San Mateo, California. A tribute concert was held at the weekend starring former Montrose bandmate Sammy Hagar alongside Joe Satriani, Neal Schon and Steve Smith of Journey fame, Ricky Phillips of Styx, Mr Big's Eric Martin, Kiss men Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer, Jimmy DeGrasso of Y&T and many others. During the show Montrose's widow Leighsa, who managed her husband, displayed his note, entitled Words Of Musical Expression From Ronnie. It read: "Music is one of the most powerful and precious gifts we all share. "The best that any of us can do is try to connect with the core of what it is that drives us to express ourselves through any creative medium we choose, and bring as much of ourselves as we can to that process. "I have chosen playing guitar and composing music (or have they chosen me? ) as my principal means of creative expression. For me, the work of refining that process is always ongoing. "My wish is that you find all of the pleasure and joy in listening to this music that I found in creating it. "My deepest gratitude to the incredible gifted and talented musicians who helped me to bring this music to you. Ronnie." It's not been confirmed how Montrose intended his words to be used. Last month Leighsa said: "Ronnie had a difficult childhood which caused him to have extremely deep and damaging feelings of inadequacy. He never thought he was good enough. Now I see he didn't want to carry these burdens for very much longer." Montrose did not leave a suicide note, but had texted his wife to say: "I'm so sorry. Still have the gun in my hand. I'm going on that voyage. I love you beyond measure." Thanks for the report to Classicrockmagazine.com.

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    nickzippelli
    SuicidalFreak wrote: What a shame. I just can't believe Ronnie would kill himself.
    the irony of you commenting on this article your name has blown my mind
    jasonburg
    Just for the record, the report this reprints, from ClassicRockMagazine.com, is completely inaccurate. The message referred to in this report was read out loud by Leighsa Montrose at the April 27 tribute concert, at which time she reminded the crowd about when Ronnie wrote it -- for the liner notes to his 1999 acoustic album Bearings. Go buy a copy and see for yourself.
    dennis.1960
    So sad. I think many of us who come from a "difficult childhood" turn to music as a safe place and eventually spend our lives there. It's too bad that music wasn't enough. Here's to you Ronnie, I'm having a listen to Space Station #5
    MR.LZZYHALE
    SuicidalFreak wrote: What a shame. I just can't believe Ronnie would kill himself.
    well people belive that Kurt killed himself even though he didnt so....
    Purcell
    nickzippelli wrote: SuicidalFreak wrote: What a shame. I just can't believe Ronnie would kill himself. the irony of you commenting on this article your name has blown my mind
    I was actually in the middle of typing out my response when I saw your comment. Awful story, but I am a sucker for sweet irony
    nmnmike
    ronnie, you and your music, guitar playing, are of god sending gifts, I have always enjoyed your music and in my heart I cry for we all will miss you and all the love and joy you and your music have given this world. never to be forgotten, youre the best!