Ronnie Montrose, (November 29, 1947 – March 3, 2012), rock guitarist.

Rock guitar legend Ronnie Montrose was born in San Francisco. After a brief stint with singer Boz Scaggs, he became a session guitarist on some classic rock recordings, such as Van Morrison’s “Tupelo Honey,” Gary Wright’s “Dream Weaver,” and Edgar Winter’s “They Only Come Out At Night,” which featured the hits “Frankenstein” and Free Ride“.

In 1973, he formed his own band, named after himself, which launched the career of singer Sammy Hagar, on such hits as “Rock Candy” and Bad Motor Scooter“.

Montrose & Hagar

After Montrose disbanded, he formed the group Gamma and continued to appear as a session player for others, including the Nicolette Larson, Paul Kantner, the Neville Brothers, and with jazz musicians Herbie Hancock and Tony Williams. He also appeared on Hagar’s 1997 album “Marching to Mars” along with the other original members of Montrose and performed with Hagar on several concerts in 2004 & 2005. Ronnie Montrose died from prostate cancer at his home in California at the age of 64.

“Ronnie Montrose gave me my first break as a songwriter, as a front man, as a recording artist, as a touring artist, and for that I will always be grateful… It’s a shame to lose Ronnie and I’m so sorry for his loved ones.”

– Sammy Hagar (from his website)

Visit the official Ronnie Montrose website here.