*** UPDATE: March 18th 2014 ***
The Music World Loses a Great One by Tedd Webb
Legendary percussionist Joe Lala who gained fame with Blues image, and Stephen Stills Manassas, plus hundred of other groups, passed away Wed March 18th at 7 am in Tampa’s St Joseph’s Hospital. Lala was 67 years old.
He started out playing in his Jr high and high school bands, not a great drummer just average. But over time he went to play with several Bay area groups before co founding Blues Image with Mike Pinera.
Blues Image went on to stardom with a single called “Ride Captain Ride”, Pinera went with Iron Butterfly and Joe Lala started out what turned out to be a fantastic recording career, playing on records for The Bee Gees, Henry Paul, and many other huge acts.
Joe’s living room was well adorned with Gold and Platinum LP awards from RIAA recordings which he was featured.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome gave way to a new career, acting. Joe’s credits are large in this field as well, high-lighted by his starring opposite Robert Redford in the motion picture Havana.
Joe gave up the Hollywood lifestyle to return to Tampa 10 years ago to take care of his aging mother Jennie. He took of his Mom until her death earlier in 2013, and was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer shortly before his Mom passed.
Joe fought hard, chemo and radiation, but the damage done by the cancer proved to be too much.
We lose a great musician, fantastic actor, and the world’s best friend.
Here’s to a great career, from a man who came from meager means, and rose to Hollywood stardom.
Rest in Peace Joe Lala