Johnny Depp “devastated” after Jeff Beck dies
The Pirate of the Caribbean star was with the English guitarist who passed away suddenly after contracting meningitis.
Jeff Beck, the iconic and genre-defying English guitarist who first gained notoriety with The Yardbirds before launching a solo career, passed away at the age of 78, according to a post made by his family on social media on Wednesday. The family reported that he died peacefully on Tuesday after developing bacterial meningitis suddenly.
RIP Jeff Beck: Johnny Depp “devastated”
Beck, who was born in Wallington, England, was twice inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once in 1992 for his work with The Yardbirds and again in 2009 as a solo artist. Beck was ranked fifth all-time by Rolling Stone magazine in 2015, one spot ahead of blues legend B.B. King. In 2022, Beck collaborated with actor Johnny Depp on his farewell album, “18,” a 13-track collection of primarily cover songs.
“We slowly built songs that we just like. We didn’t really make any design,” Beck said at the time. “It’s an extraordinary honor to play and write music with Jeff, one of the true greats and someone I am now privileged enough to call my brother,” Depp said in a release at the time.
Depp was reportedly with Beck just before his passing. A source told People that the actor “is totally devastated” and said that he “was by Jeff’s bedside” along with “some other rock stars” before Beck’s death.
The source added that “they [Beck and Depp] had a really tight friendship, they were extremely close, and he got even closer over this past summer when they were touring together. Johnny is still processing this news. He’s devastated.”
Jeff Beck tributes from the stars
Mick Jagger, the lead singer of the Rolling Stones, took to social media.
“With the death of Jeff Beck we have lost a wonderful man and one of the greatest guitar players in the world. We will all miss him so much.”
Beck won his first Grammy award in 1985 with the instrumental “Escape.” He would go on to win seven more of the gold-plated statuettes in his career. Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi mourned Beck’s death on Twitter, saying he was shocked to hear of his passing.
“Jeff was such a nice person and an outstanding iconic, genius guitar player - there will never be another Jeff Beck,” Iommi wrote. “His playing was very special & distinctively brilliant! He will be missed.”
Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page, also a former Yardbirds member, paid tribute to Beck, saying his technique was unique and imagination limitless.
“The six stringed Warrior is no longer here for us to admire the spell he could weave around our mortal emotions. Jeff could channel music from the ethereal,” he said. “Jeff, I will miss you along with your millions of fans.”
What were Jeff Becks greatest hits?
Judging the ‘greatest’ songs of any artist is tough, and personal, so here’s what UCR thought about Beck’s top hits.