Glenn Frey: 'shock and disbelief' after Eagles guitarist dies aged 67

Bandmate Don Henley says crossing paths with the musician changed his life forever

Glenn Frey
(Image credit: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

Eagles guitarist and co-founder Glenn Frey has died in New York at the age of 67.

He "succumbed to complications from rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis and pneumonia", the band said in a statement posted on its website.

"Words can neither describe our sorrow, nor our love and respect, for all that he has given to us," added the message.

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The Eagles was one of the biggest bands of the 1970s, with hit singles including Hotel California, Take It Easy and One of These Nights. Frey co-founded the group in 1971, with Don Henley, Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner, initially as a back-up band for singer Linda Ronstadt, reports CNN.

When they split acrimoniously in 1980, Frey continued to enjoy commercial success, most notably with The Heat is On, from the film Beverly Hills Cop.

Over the course of his career, the guitarist released 24 Top 40 singles and received six Grammy awards and five American Music Awards.

The Eagles reformed in 1994, rekindling their popularity with fans and rebuilding frayed relationships between the band members.

In an individual statement today, drummer and vocalist Henley said crossing paths with Frey in 1970 had changed his life forever.

"He had an encyclopaedic knowledge of popular music and a work ethic that wouldn't quit," he said. "He was funny, bull-headed, mercurial, generous, deeply talented and driven. He loved his wife and kids more than anything. We are all in a state of shock, disbelief and profound sorrow. "

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