Joey DeFrancesco Dies at 51, His Cause of Death Explained

Renowned Jazz musician Joey DeFrancesco passed away on Thursday at his home in his Arizona home. He was 51 years old. Read on to know how did Joey DeFrancesco die, what was the cause of his death, and what happened to him.

DeFrancesco was the master of the Jazz Organ and the driving force behind the Hammond B-3 organ. He was also a five-time Grammy nominee and nine-time winner of the Down Beat Critics Poll.

Gloria DeFrancesco, his wife and manager, announced the unfortunate news of his passing on social media platforms. Fans have been paying tribute ever since the news emerged.

How did Joey DeFrancesco die?

Gloria DeFrancesco announced the tragic and untimely passing of his husband and Jazz sensation, Joey DeFrancesco, 51, in an emotional Facebook post on Friday. She confirmed that her husband passed away on Thursday, August 25, 2022.

“The love of my life is now in peace with the angels. Thank you for the outpouring of love and support coming in from everywhere. Joey loved you all,” she wrote in the post alongside Joey’s picture.

Joey was known to bring the richly enveloping sound of the Hammond B-3 organ and roaring back into the Jazz mainstream in the early 1990s. He reigned the genre for over 30 years.

Joey DeFrancesco’s cause of death Explained?

Gloria didn’t specify the exact cause of Joey DeFrancesco’s passing. The family hasn’t shared a statement revealing that either. However, there are several reports available on the web claiming that the Jazz icon was struggling with health issues recently.

DeFrancesco was suffering from “fatal health issues for a while.” He was known to lose a lot of weight recently and his condition was deteriorating for some time. Unfortunately, Joey passed away this Thursday leaving the fans shocked.

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Joey DeFrancesco Early Life and Career in Music

Joey DeFrancesco was born on April 10, 1971, in Springfield. He came to music as a birthright as his father, popularly known as “Papa” John DeFrancesco, played organ on the Philadelphia jazz scene. His grandfather, Joseph DeFrancesco, had played saxophone and clarinet during the swing era of the 1930s in New York.

Joey’s older brother, Johnny, is also a blues guitarist. Music and musical instruments were running in the blood of the family. Joey started out banging on a toy piano and had graduated to this father’s organ by the age of 4.

By the age of 9, his father brought him to the Settlement Music School. It was a community organization with a long history of mentoring young talent. Lovett Hines directed Joey and his band and stated, “He was a terror at the organ.”

At the age of 10, Joey played his first professional gig at Gert’s Cocktail Lounge on South Street. A few years later Joey became a local superstar as a middle schooler. He attended the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts.

Joey grew up to be a multi-instrument specialist. He worked in a range of situations beyond the typical organ combo, including a group called The Free Spirits. It was a fusion group with guitarist John McLaughlin and drummer Dennis Chambers.

In 1995, DeFrancesco rolled out After The Rain with master drummer Elvin Jones. It proved to be one of his most successful works. Joey dominated the industry for over three decades and exhibit supreme technical command at all the organs he played. He made around 30 albums of his own which earned him several Grammy nominations, the most recent one in 2020.

Joey DeFrancesco was the best player of the Hammond organ

DeFrancesco was best known for the sound of the Hammond B-3 organ immersing back into the jazz mainstream in the early 1990s. He reigned as its preeminent ace for over 30 years and was deemed responsible for “reviving soulful jazz” of the instrument.

He was a genus of the Hammond B3 organ. In recent years, Joey took a keen interest in “spiritual jazz,” randing from Sanders to Sun Ra. “I’ve always been stretching the boundaries of the instrument since day one,” he mentioned in an interview.

Fans have been paying tribute to the gone legend. Our heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends, and loved ones. May God let the departed soul rest in peace. He’ll be forever remembered for the magical pieces he delivered.

9 thoughts on “Joey DeFrancesco Dies at 51, His Cause of Death Explained”

  1. My deepest condolences to the DeFrancesco Family.
    I grew up witnessing his fabulous jazz work, as well as other family member performances, most recently at the 2022 Berks Jazz Festival.
    Joey will always be one of my all time favorites.

    • As a former jazz Dj in Philly (1965-70) I heard many of the great organ trios of the day, Jimmy Smith, Brother Jack McDuff,, but Joey had his own distinct and outrageous style, always blowing me away w/his talent. dexterity, and of course speed. While I came to know many of Philly’s greats including Pat Martino, I had the opportunity of meeting Joey some years back in an intimate San Francisco venue, while we talked about the influence of the legendary Wes Montgomery whom I knew well. My heart goes out to wife Gloria, Dad Poppa John, and loved ones! Ron T 🎼🙏

  2. He had total control of the mighty B-3. His solo on the song “One Hundred Ways” on you tube is one of the best organ solos I’ve ever heard. What a loss to the music world and Hammond enthusiasts.

  3. Yes, being “blown away” by his music is an apt description. We heard Joey D. as a guest artist in concert with the Air force Airmen of Note big band. His music was so powerful that I almost had to walk out of the auditorium. What a great talent! It is a very sad day.

  4. We loss another Mighty Hammond Burner Joey D. The 1st time I’ve heard Joey D, I was shopping at Record Theater selecting some real albums, at that time Record Theatre would play their new arrivals as background music as you shop, I heard this heavy soulful uptempo cut an right away I thought it was Jimmy Smith so I continue shopping an grooving to the song, as I was checking out my purchases I ask the counter person who was the organ player on the cut I just heard, he said Joey Defrancesco, I said Joey who? He repeated Joey Defrancesco a young organist debut album, I said where is it, I want it, he gave me the CD, I literally ran out the store an pop it in my CD player in my car an immediately I was hooked on Joey Defrancesco, as a matter of fact I have Joey’s autograph on his debut CD when he visited buffalo for the 1st time, thankyou for the love Joey D you’ll be missed, God bless you

  5. Joey was a gifted musician, I loved the way he played and his personality. R.I.P.

  6. So sad. Saw him at Jazz on the Water in Hood River, Oregon about 20 years ago and have been listening ever since. Especially enjoyed “Organized” on SiriusXM’s Real Jazz channel. Will miss you and forever cherish your music. RIP❤️

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