The music world lost another key player yesterday. Chris Ethridge, songwriter and bassist with country-rock pioneers the Flying Burrito Brothers, longtime session musician, and a member of Willie Nelson‘s band, passed away. He was 65.
The music world was alerted a to Ethridge’s condition by a tweet on April 19 from Booker T. Jones:
Just talked to Chris Ethridge, (Burritos, Willie Nelson), hospitalized in Meridian, MS – send love and hope – doctors say he will pass soon.—
Booker T. Jones (@BookerTJones) April 19, 2012
Randy Houser then tweeted early Monday morning with the news of the passing of his friend.
Just found out one of my dear friends passed away. sad day. Chris Ethridge you will be missed. Nobody played it
like you brother.—
Randy Houser (@RandyHouser) April 23, 2012
On Monday afternoon, Willie Nelson was among others who confirmed the loss.
WN&F are sad to hear of the passing of Family member & friend Chris Ethridge he was a talented musician & we were honored to call him Family—
Willie Nelson (@willienelson) April 23, 2012
A native of Meridian, Mississippi, Ethridge played in bands with country-rock icon Gram Parsons, including the International Submarine Band and the Flying Burrito Brothers, and cowrote such country-rock classics as “Hot Burrito #1 (I’m Your Toy),” “Hot Burrito #2,” and “She.”
He was also an active session musician also played with an impressive range of artists across the California country- and folk-rock spectrum including Randy Newman, Gene Clark, Rita Coolidge, Phil Ochs, Leon Russell, Linda Ronstadt, and Ry Cooder.
Ethridge also toured with Nelson and played in the post-Parsons version of the Burrito Brothers.
In 2010, a concert tribute to Ethridge was held in Meridian, Mississippi that included performances of music he wrote and played on. Among the special guests was Muscle Shoals legend Spooner Oldham.