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James Cotton Dead - Blues Harmonica Legend Passes Away at 81

James Cotton Dead - Blues Harmonica Legend Passes Away at 81

James Cotton, one of the most well-known blues harmonica players of all time, has sadly died at the age of 81.

The Grammy Award-winning musician passed away on Thursday (March 16) due to pneumonia while being treated at St. David’s Medical Center in Austin, Texas, according to a statement from James‘ label, Alligator Records.

James was born on a Mississippi cotton plantation and started playing the harmonica at age nine.

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He was later mentored by Sonny Boy Williamson II and toured with Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters before forming The James Cotton Band in 1966, collaborating with Janis Joplin, The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin, and more.

James is survived by his wife Jacklyn Hairston, daughters Teresa Hampton and Marshall Ann, son James Patrick, and lots of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Our thoughts are with James‘ loved ones during this difficult time.

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Credit: Paul Natkin/WireImage; Photos: Getty
Posted to: James Cotton, RIP

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