Leslie West at 67: Still Climbing That Mountain!
When I first heard his guitar (and his voice), I was just a kid, and I recall being completely and utterly captivated with that tone, obsessed with the "Mountain Climbing!" album (including the artwork), and to this day I feel like a giddy child when I hear that distinctive riff on "Mississippi Queen".
The guitarist, singer and songwriter is, of course, best known for being a founding member of Mountain.
He was born on October 22, 1945, in New York City and grew up in Hackensack, New Jersey and in Long Island and Queens, New York.
He had his lower right leg amputated in June of 2011 as a result of complications from diabetes, but that hasn't stopped him from doing what he loves, and having the strength and courage to overcome the challenge.
In fact, late last spring, Jonny Lang came to Intermediapost recording studios in Paramus, New Jersey to be a special guest on Leslie's new CD, which is exptected to hit the streets early next year.
Jonny said, "What a singer and player!"
Leslie will also play the Iridium in New York City on November 3rd and 4th.
I saw him when he opened for Joe Satriani's North American tour in the fall of 2008, and he was still impressive.
And yes, Mountain is still alive and well with Leslie as a member, although there are no current tour dates on their agenda as of this writing.