NASHVILLE, TN (RNN) –Ed King, the Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist who co-wrote “Sweet Home Alabama” and gave us the classic opening riff, has died. He was 68.
“It is with great sorrow we announce the passing of Ed King who died at his home in Nashville, Tennessee, on August 22nd, 2018,” a post on King’s Facebook page said. “We thank his many friends and fans for their love and support of Ed during his life and career.”
No cause of death was given. King had been battling lung cancer and had recently been hospitalized for the disease,” Rolling Stone reported.
King was a member of Lynyrd Skynyrd from 1972 to 1975 and again from 1987 to 1996. He played on the band’s first three albums.
“I’ve just found out about Ed’s passing and I’m shocked and saddened,” said band founder Gary Rossington.
“Ed was our brother, and a great Songwriter and Guitar player. I know he will be reunited with the rest of the boys in Rock & Roll Heaven. Our thoughts and prayers are with Sharon and his family.”
I’ve just found out about Ed’s passing and I’m shocked and saddened. Ed was our brother, and a great Songwriter and Guitar player. I know he will be reunited with the rest of the boys in Rock & Roll Heaven. Our thoughts and prayers are with Sharon and his family. -Gary Rossington
— Lynyrd Skynyrd (@Skynyrd) August 23, 2018
"I don’t know anyone who doesn’t 'know' the intro lick to 'Sweet Home Alabama,'" guitarist Andrew Michael Sovine told The Tennessean.
"If that was all (King) was known for I think that would be worth remembering, but all of his work with Skynyrd was just amazing ... as a guitarist I don’t think he ever got the credit he was due. The music he wrote really was the soundtrack of a generation or two."
King was also founding member of Strawberry Alarm Clock, best known for their hit “Incense and Peppermints” in the 1960s.
King, along with the rest of Lynyrd Skynyrd, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.