Jeff Beck, one of the greatest rock guitarists of all time, has died at the age of 78.
The Grammy-winning musician rose to prominence with The Yardbirds, and went on to have a successful solo career and fronted the Jeff Beck Group and Beck, Bogert & Appice.
Beck died “peacefully” on Tuesday after contracting bacterial meningitis, his family said.
Beck ranked in the top five of Rolling Stone’s 100 greatest guitarists and was often described as a “guitarist’s guitarist”.
A statement posted on the musician’s official Twitter page read: “On behalf of his family, it is with deep and profound sadness that we share the news of Jeff Beck’s passing.
“After suddenly contracting bacterial meningitis, he peacefully passed away yesterday.
“His family ask for privacy while they process this tremendous loss.”
Born Geoffrey Arnold Beck in Wallington, Surrey, the musician built his first guitar as a teenager.
Kiss bassist Gene Simmons said his death was “heartbreaking news … no one played guitar like Jeff. Please get ahold of the first two Jeff Beck Group albums and behold greatness. RIP.”
Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi wrote on Twitter that he was “totally shocked”.
He added: “Jeff was such a nice person and an outstanding iconic, genius guitar player – there will never be another Jeff Beck. His playing was very special & distinctively brilliant! He will be missed.”
This is a breaking story. More to follow.