Guitarist of the classic southern rock band Black Oak Arkansas, Rickie Lee Reynolds, has died at the age of 72. Reynolds daughter, Amber Lee, announced his death to the public over Facebook. The announcement follows news that Reynolds had been hospitalised due to Covid-19. It was during his stay in hospital that he suffered kidney failure and cardiac arrest.
In the statement, Amber Lee wrote: “Unfortunately, this morning he suffered another cardiac arrest, which they were unable to resuscitate him from. We are all heartbroken by this massive loss, and the whole world feels colder and more empty without his presence among us. Please take a moment of silence today to remember all of the love he gave to the world, and take some time to give back some of those wonderful feelings that he gave us all in our times of need.”
Lee opened the post by thanking all of her father’s fans: “I want to thank each and every one of you for your outpour of compassion and care. It had me in tears to see all of the love for my father, and I know he would have a hard time fighting them back himself.”
Reynolds founded Black Oak Arkansas with vocalist Ronnie Smith, guitarists Stanley Knight and Harvey Jett, bassist Pat Daugherty and drummer Wayne Evans in 1963. Their debut self titled album was released in 1971 and features some of the group’s best-loved tracks, including: ‘Hot and Nasty’, ‘Lord Have Mercy On My Soul’, ‘Uncle Lijiah’ and ‘When Electricity Came To Arkansas.’
Although the album reached 127 in the US Billboard charts, and it would go on to gain gold status. The band then went on to release eight studio albums in just five years, including their most acclaimed LP, High On The Hog. It was at this time that the group performed as the opening act for such names as Bruce Springsteen and The Eagles. After a lengthy hiatus, Black Oak Arkansas released Underdog Heroes in 2019, their first album of all-new material in 30 years.
You can take a listen to the album’s title track below.