Rest in Peace, Keyboardist/Vocalist Mike Finnigan (Jimi Hendrix, Bonnie Raitt, Joe Cocker, More): 1945-2021


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Rock Cellar Magazine
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Mike Finnigan, an acclaimed studio/touring musician known for his work with the Hammond B3 organ and for recording stints with acts including Jimi Hendrix, Joe Cocker and many others, passed away this week at the age of 76, it was reported on Wednesday by Celebrity Access, noting that he passed after a battle with kidney cancer.

The many noteworthy acts Finnigan served as a session musician and/or touring musician include Bonnie Raitt, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Buddy Guy, Taj Mahal, Michael McDonald, Peter Frampton, Cher, Ringo Starr, Whitesnake’s David Coverdale and many more.

Bonnie Raitt and Mike Finnigan, New Orleans Jazz Fest 2012 (Photo: Lauri Reimer)

Bonnie Raitt and Mike Finnigan, New Orleans Jazz Fest 2012 (Photo: Lauri Reimer)

Finnigan was also especially well known in the Los Angeles musical community.

In 2017, Finnigan was the focus of an Oral History interview from NAMM, the National Association of Music Merchants. Here’s video of that interview, in which he discusses some key moments from his career:

Coverdale shared a warm remembrance of Finnigan after hearing about his death:

As did Brian Ray of Paul McCartney’s band. May reflected on his experience meeting and being a musical colleague of Finnigan’s over the years:

I first heard Mike Finnigan singing and playing Hammond B3 on an album by The Jerry Hahn Brotherhood in the early 70’s…

Posted by Brian Ray on Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Celebrity Access’s obituary piece on Finnigan includes this portion, regarding what he was up to in more recent years:

Through the 1980s, Finnigan was a much sought-after musician, recording on multiple albums with Crosby, Stills & Nash, including “American Dream,” and “After The Storm,” as well as with artists such as Joe Cocker (Hymn for my Soul).

He also provided keyboards for the legendary blues and soul singer Etta James for more than two decades.

More recently, he recorded with Tracy Chapman, Joe Cocker, Buddy Guy, Tower of Power, Rod Stewart, Leonard Cohen, Keb ‘Mo, Taj Mahal, Bonnie Raitt, Eric Burdon, Kara Grainger, and the Zen Blues Quartet, among others.

Rest in peace, Mike Finnigan.

Mike Finnigan, Allen Toussaint, Jon Cleary, New Orleans Jazz Fest 2012 (Photo: Lauri Reimer)

Mike Finnigan, Allen Toussaint, Jon Cleary, New Orleans Jazz Fest 2012 (Photo: Lauri Reimer)


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