RIP – Survivor vocalist Jimi Jamison

Survivor were (and still are) one of my favourite melodic rock bands whose music I have loved since my school days, along with a select bunch of fellow school pals who liked the band. Over the years I have been lucky enough to see the bands I loved from the mid-80’s melodic rock heyday like REO Speedwagon, Night Ranger, Journey, Kansas (okay they are more prog/pomp rock) and I was really looking forward to finally seeing Survivor live next month (with the added bonus of original vocalist Dave Bickler back in the band). Sadly this won’t be the case as Jimi Jamison passed away from a heart attack aged just 63 years old. A real sad loss to music and from the tributes paid by fellow musicians and journalist/fans who have met him a genuinely nice guy off stage too.

Unlike a lot of singers with a long career Jimi Jamison managed to keep his voice in good shape and I’d recommend seeking out his solo albums, well worth a listen. Of course the Survivor albums are ‘must haves’ in particular ‘Vital Signs’ and the last album to feature Jim Peterik ‘Too Hot Too Sleep’, a lost gem if ever there was one. Lots of good music to remember him by RIP Jimi Jamison

Some tributes from fellow musicians and his record label Frontiers:

Jim Peterik (ex-Survivor): “I’ve feel like I’ve just been punched in the heart. I have lost a dear friend and the world has lost a massive talent and world beating singer. Shine on Jimi. Love Jim Peterik”

Kevin Chalfant (The Storm/707): “Dear Jimi, Getting to know you as a personal friend truly enriched my life. Your advice in so many situations all comes flooding back to my mind now. I am so glad you called me last week or I would feel like I didn’t have a chance to say goodbye. You still found it humorous to prank on me one last time by saying that you lost a great paying because I never called you back or answered my text messages when everyone knows it was you that never replied, but I played along because that brought you such joy to watch me squirm : ) I will miss your teasing and joking around more than anything, but the world will truly remember you for your gigantic talent and enormous voice. But you were a friend with a caring soul. God grant you peace my friend.”

Bobby Kimball 9ex-Toto): “When I heard that Jimi had passed away, it totally broke my heart. I feel so bad now that I know he is gone. Frontiers Records sent me an e-mail 2 months ago, and they asked me if Jimi and I could do another “Kimball/Jamison” Duet CD. I really wanted to. I feel so bad that I’ve just lost one of my very best friends, and he was such a great singer, also fun to work with. We also lost Fergie Frederiksen not long ago, and he was one of my very good friends as well. This is all very sad for me, because I loved these two guys, and I have done a lot of concerts with both of them.”

Frontiers Records: “To say we are deeply saddened by the passing of Jimi Jamison would be a tremendous understatement. We had the pleasure of working with Jimi on a few releases including, “Empires” (1999), “Reach” (a Survivor album) (2006), “Crossroads Moment” (2008), “Kimball/Jamison” (with former Toto singer Bobby Kimball) (2011) and “Never Too Late” (2012). He was an incredible talent and will be sorely missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with Jimi, his family and his friends and fans.”

Survivor: “The entire Survivor family is very shocked and saddened by the passing of our brother Jimi Jamison. Our thoughts, love and prayers go out to his family and friends.”

Frankie Sullivan (Survivor guitarist): “There is no way to explain the loss of my brother “Jamo.” Over the years we developed a deep friendship. My heart is heavy with sadness as I struggle to express the pain, suffering and deep loss. Though I rest assured that Jim is in the best of places, it still provides little comfort for those of us left behind. His voice was magic and he had a loving heart. I called him “Golden Throat” and for good reason. Jim Jamison had a voice we will never forget. It was massive and huge and yet sweet and gentle. He was a loving soul and a brother to me in many ways. I will miss him greatly.”

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