Jeff Hanneman, Slayer guitarist, dies at 49
LOS ANGELES -- Jeff Hanneman, a founding member of Slayer whose career was irrevocably changed after a spider bite, has died. He was 49.
Slayer spokeswoman Heidi Robinson-Fitzgerald said Hanneman died Thursday morning of liver failure at a Los Angeles hospital with his wife, Kathy, by his side.
The guitarist had recently begun writing songs with the band in anticipation of recording a new album later this year. He had been slowly recovering from what was believed to be a spider bite that nearly cost him his arm after he failed to seek immediate treatment.
"The music industry has lost a true trailblazer, and our deepest sympathies go out to his family, his bandmates and fans around the world who mourn his untimely passing," said Neil Portnow, president and CEO of the Recording Academy, in a statement.
Robinson-Fitzgerald said it's believed the spider bite contributed to the failure of Hanneman's liver, but it is unclear whether an autopsy will be scheduled. No funeral arrangements have been made.
"Jeff Hanneman will always be a metal god," rocker Andrew W.K. posted on Twitter.
Hanneman co-founded the thrash metal pioneers in Huntington Beach, Calif., in 1982.
AP Music Writer Chris Talbott contributed to this report from Nashville, Tenn.
- USGS: 6.9 earthquake hits 50 miles west of Eureka
- Calif. emissions law could make gas prices jump
- Police: Man killed in Fresno gang-related shooting
- Man accused of killing Parlier coach identified
- Investigators chase 'every angle' in missing jet
- Toddler uses FaceTime to help mom after dog bite
- 1 arrested, 1 sought after Visalia Save Mart robbery
- Woman fatally shot by Fresno police identified
- Mexico government 100 pct sure drug capo killed
- 2 dozen injured as California school stage falls
- New Target store opens in Northwest Fresno
- Pistorius trial: Stunning testimony in 1st week
- Putin defends separatist drive in Crimea as legal
- Lions owner William Clay Ford dies at 88