David Crosby -- the driving force behind Crosby, Stills and Nash -- died today after a long illness at age He was 81. A source close to the family confirmed his death.
- Born on August 14th, 1941 in Los Angeles, California
- Founding member of The Byrds and Crosby, Stills and Nash (and Young)
- Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee in 1991 (The Byrds) and again in 2000 (Crosby, Stills and Nash)
- Jailed for nine months after being convicted of drug possession in 1985.
- Received a liver transplant in 1994
- Reunited with James Raymond, a son he had given up for adoption years before who turned out to play keyboards, along with guitarist Jeff Pevar they formed the band CPR.
- Fathered two children for Melissa Etheridge and her then-wife, Julie Cypher, through artificial insemination
- Released over a dozen studio and live solo albums between 1971 and 2022, including a concert recording with backing group the Lighthouse Band that just came out in December.
- Outspoken and often prickly, Crosby was one of the more quotable musicians on Twitter, where he maintained a running dialog with fans and non-fans alike.
David Crosby was born August 14th, 1941 in Los Angeles to Oscar-winning cinematographer Floyd Crosby. He briefly attended drama school but dropped out to pursue a musical career. He toured as a folk-rock guitarist and released a solo session in 1961.
Crosby soon formed Jet Set with Jim McGuinn and Gene Clark. In 1963, they added Michael Clarke and bassist Chris Hillman, and renamed themselves The Byrds. Their signature 12-string guitar sound was steeped in Crosby’s jazzy swells and Indian-influenced harmonics, and their debut album, Mr. Tambourine Man, featured a title song penned by Bob Dylan.
In 1968, Crosby departed The Byrds and formed Crosby, Stills and Nash. CSN released their debut album and performed at Woodstock in 1969. By 1970, Neil Young had joined the lineup and they released Deja Vu. The group parted ways after that year’s summer tour, and in 1971, Crosby released his first solo album, If Only I Could Remember My Name.
Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young regrouped in late 1974 and continued an off-and-on musical relationship until 2013, when remarks Crosby made about Young's new relationship with actress Daryl Hannah led to an estrangement between the two. Crosby later apologized for what he said, but by late 2015 he and Nash were also estranged, thus ending CSN as an entity as well. (In 2017, Young said he wasn't opposed to touring with the others.)
Crosby collaborated with his son James Raymond and guitarist Jeff Pevar in the late ‘80s to create CPR. The reunion with Raymond came three decades after Raymond had been put up for adoption, without Crosby even knowing that he had a son. CPR toured on and off for nearly two decades.
In 1985, Crosby was convicted of drug possession and served a nine-month jail term. After his release from prison, he released his first solo album since 1971, Oh Yes I Can, and a best-selling autobiography, Long Time Gone, giving a detailed account of his rehabilitation and drug addictions.
In November 1994, Crosby underwent a liver transplant at Dumont-UCLA Liver Transplant Center in L.A. His liver was badly damaged due to excessive alcohol and drug abuse and Hepatitis-C. After the surgery, he created a PSA for the National Tissue and Organ Registry.
Crosby was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991 for The Byrds and in 1997 for Crosby, Stills and Nash. He again made headlines in 2000 when it was revealed that he was the father of Melissa Etheridge and Julia Cypher’s two children through artificial insemination.
David Crosby is survived by his wife, Jan Dance, and four children.