Music Industry Shocked by Michael Rhodes’ Sudden Death
The heartbreaking news of musician Michael Rhodes’ death stunned the music industry. Michael Rhodes passed away at his home in Nashville, Tennessee, Saturday morning (March 4, 2023).
Born in Louisiana, Rhodes started playing guitar at the age of 11 and became a professional before migrating to the bass.
In the early ’70s, he moved to Austin, Texas, where he performed with local bands. Four years later, the star moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where he had great performances with Charlie Rich‘s son Alan.
In 1977, Michael moved to Nashville, and he joined the local band The Nerve with Danny Rhodes and Ricky Rector. The musician worked as a demo musician for Tree Publishing Company, and then as a session player.
He joined Eddie Bayers, Rodney Crowell, Steuart Smith, and Vince Santoro in the Cicadas. They recorded one album in 1997 and had been playing together for more than a decade.
Rhodes was a member of The Notorious Cherry Bombs, with Crowell, Vince Gill, Hank DeVito, Bayers, and Richard Bennett.
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Michael Rhodes Passed Away at 69
A representative for the musician confirmed that Michael Rhodes passed away at 69. The family members have not provided the exact cause of the death.
Rhodes contributed to the recordings of numerous artists, including Pat McLaughlin, Neal McCoy, Chely Wright, Doug Stone, Steve Winwood, Larry Carlton, Wynonna Judd, the Dixie Chicks, Hank Williams, Jr., Reba McEntire, Tanya Tucker, Rosanne Cash, Vince Gill, Faith Hill, Toby Keith, Dolly Parton, Randy Travis, and Kenny Chesney.
Rhodes was an active sideman in the recordings and touring of Joe Bonamassa. He was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum in 2019.
Besides session work, the artist was a member of several local bands who play frequently in Nashville-area venues. In 2016, he won Bass Player of the Year as awarded by the Academy of Country Music.
John Rich wrote: “Very sad day in Nashville as we lost our friend, one of the greatest bass players to have ever lived, Michael Rhodes. His mere presence in the studio made everyone bring their ‘A’ game. Huge loss for our music family. RIP my friend, and play God a nice, deep heavenly groove.”
“We have lost another incredible musician. Michael Rhodes bass player extraordinaire and wonderfully funny and gentlemanly. Here he is playing with me, Bob Mayo, Eddie Bayers, Brent Mason, Paul Franklin, and John Hobbs. My love and condolences to his family,” Peter Frampton wrote on Twitter.
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