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Flea and Patti Smith pay tribute to the late Tom Verlaine

Patti Smith Talks About Year of the Monkey

Flea, Patti Smith, Michael Stipe, and others have paid tribute to the late Tom Verlaine.

After a Television representative confirmed on Saturday frontman Tom Verlaine had died at the age of 73, musicians took to social media to pay tribute to the late singer.

According to a news release, the punk rock star died “peacefully” in New York City, “surrounded by close friends”, following a “brief illness”.

“I have lost a hero. Bless you Tom Verlaine for the songs, the lyrics, the voice!” R.E.M. member Michael Stipe shared in response to Tom’s death. “And later, the laughs, the inspiration, the stories, and the rigorous belief that music and art can alter and change matter, lives, experience. You introduced me to a world that flipped my life upside down. I am forever grateful.”

Captioning a black-and-white photo on Instagram, Tom’s former partner Patti Smith wrote after the news broke, “This is a time when all seemed possible. Farewell Tom, aloft the Omega.”

Blondie guitarist Stein shared via Twitter the story of him and Tom meeting for the first time.

“I met Tom Verlaine when he just arrived in NYC I guess ’72. He had long hair and came to my apartment with an acoustic guitar and played some songs,” Stein tweeted. “Tom and Richard Hell have told me that I auditioned for the Neon Boys but I don’t remember.”

Flea added on his own channels, “Listened to Marquee Moon 1000 times. And I mean LISTENED, sitting still, lights down low taking it all in…

“Awe and wonder every time. Will listen 1000 more. Tom Verlaine is one of the greatest rock musicians ever. He effected the way John and I play immeasurably. Fly on Tom.”

– Cover Media