Artists and Boston Music Community React to Death of J. Geils

John Geils of the J. Geils Band Michael Ochs Archives  Getty Images

John Warren Geils Jr., the guitarist and leader of the J. Geils Band - which churned out 80s hits like "Centerfold" and "Love Stinks" - was found dead Tuesday inside his MA home, a report says. Groton Chief of Police Donald Palma Jr. said...

The Groton Police Department said Geils was pronounced dead at the scene after officers were called to the home to conduct a well-being check.

No cause of death was immediately reported, but according to TMZ, police don't suspect foul play.

At the height of their popularity in the 1980's, the band was opened for by such musical heavyweights as The Eagles, Billy Joel, ZZ Top and U2. In the mid-Nineties, he released two albums with his band Bluestime and during the 2000s, he returned to his jazz roots with three solo records. The title track "Freeze Frame" made it to No. 4.

Guitarist J. Geils band mate and lead vocalist Peter Wolf shared a message on Facebook on his demise. Centerfold spent six weeks atop the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 beginning in February 1982.

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The band reunited in recent years for occasional appearances, including one at the Boston Strong concert that took place in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013. The band broke up in 1985, and Geils chose to focus on other pursuits.

Following a welfare checkup, the 71-year-old was found unresponsive at his home i Groton, Massachusetts around 4pm on Tuesday. But Geils later broke from the other band members, who continued to perform under the J. Geils Band name without him, triggering a legal fight over the name in 2012.

The band officially split in 1985, but began to play the occasional reunion show in 1999. At the time, Salwitz told Billboard, "It's great to be recognized, but it's a drag to be disappointed".

Wolf paid tribute to Geils following the news of his death on Tuesday night. I hope that we make it in.

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