By Alex HudsonBlues rock guitarist Alvin Lee, best known for his work with Ten Years After, passed away today (March 6) due to compilations stemming from a routine surgery. He was 68.
The sad news was announced on his website by his wife and daughters, who wrote, "We have lost a wonderful and much loved father and companion. The world has lost a truly great and gifted musician."
The Nottingham, UK-born Lee began his lengthy career in the early 1960s with a band called the Jaybirds. The group changed their moniker several times before eventually landing on the name Ten Years After. It was under this name that they achieved success, releasing albums through the Decca subsidiary Deram Records and, later, Columbia.
The band's fame spread after their appearance at Woodstock in 1969, and their Lee-sung rendition of "I'm Going Home" was included in the Woodstock film (watch that performance below). Their other well-known tunes included "I'd Love to Change the World," "Love Like a Man" and "Hear Me Calling."
Lee eventually left Ten Years After in the '70s and went on to enjoy a productive solo career, appearing on recordings with the likes of George Harrison, Steve Winwood, Mick Fleetwood and Ronnie Wood. He most recently released Still on the Road to Freedom in 2012. He reunited with Ten Years After at various points throughout the years and appeared on the 1989 album About Time.
Ten Years After drummer Ric Lee (no relation) told Billboard, "We are all stunned. All of us. I don't think its even sunk in yet as to the reality of his passing. We are all thinking of his family and friends today, and offer our own condolences."