Former frontman for the bands Survivor and Cobra, Jimi Jamison, has passed away at the age of 63. The news of his death was posted on his Facebook page yesterday (Monday, September 1) with a statement which sadly announced “the passing of a great musician, loving father and grandfather, and overall extraordinary, giving, and kindhearted human being” Members of survivor then released a statement via the band’s Twitter account saying “The entire Survivor family is very shocked and saddened by the passing of our brother Jimi Jamison. Our thoughts, love and prayers go out to his family and friends.” While the cause of Jamison’s death has not been officially determined, his booking agent told sources at TMZ that the legendary rocker suffered a heart attack and died at his home in Memphis, Tennessee.
Although he was born in rural Mississippi, Jamison was raised in Memphis, Tennesese and considered that to be his home; he taught himself how to place the guitar and piano and began performing in public at the age of 13 Jamison joined Survivor in 1984 after the demise of platinum selling band, Cobra. When Jamison became a member of survivor the band had already released their Grammy Award winning song, “Eye of the Tiger,” which was featured in the film Rocky III. However, Jamison recorded several hits with the band, most notably “Burning Heart” from the film Rocky IV. Jamison’s work with the band also included “The Moment of Truth” the theme song from the popular 1984 film, The Karate Kid and the opening song for lifeguard themed television series, Bay Watch.
In 1989, after releasing an unsuccessful Greatest Hits album, the group disbanded and Jamison went on to record a solo project; however, Jamison returned to the band from 2000-2006 and again from 2011 until his death. During his first return to the band, Jamison was featured in 2005’s Emmy Nominated Starbucks commercial where Jamison can be seen (and heard) singing the band’s most popular hit, Eye of the Tiger.
Survivor was scheduled to perform at Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino on October 4;however, the show has been cancelled. Friends and fans of the talented musician have taken to Twitter to express their grief, many tweeting their condolences with the hash tag #JimiJamison.
(Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for Rolling Stone’s Volkswagen Rock & Roll Tailgate)