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Greg Willis: Bass guitar

Genre: Rock

RIYL: Glory, Iron Butterfly, Palace Pages, Rhumboogies, Jerry Raney and the Shames, King Biscuit Blues, Mississippi Mudsharks

No shows scheduled | Post a show |

Synoposis

Background:

Greg Willis' history as a bass player goes back decades in San Diego. He first rose to fame as one-half of the rhythm section behind Iron Butterfly (Jack Pinney played drums), a band that started in San Diego before moving north to Los Angeles.

Later, Willis and Pinney would reunite in another local band called Glory, and then the Shames, both of which featured a young guitar slinger (and future Beat Farmer) named Jerry Raney.

Willis also played in the King Biscuit Blues band and in the Mississippi Mudsharks before delving into a career as a side man that saw his familiar overall-clad figure on stage with dozens of local artists.

He was 63 in April 2012 when he suffered a stroke, most likely caused by high blood pressure. "I didn't have any idea I had high blood pressure," he says. "I'm completely surprised."

After the stroke happened in his sleep, "I couldn't stand up. I couldn't say words."

Patty Birchard, his girlfriend, tried to help. "He tried to get up and get dressed, and he couldn't." That's when she called her dad. He had a van. They would need to use it to get Willis to a hospital.

Willis spent the next three days at Mercy Hospital in Hillcrest. After, he was transferred to a physical rehab center near Alvarado Hospital for another two weeks. Therapists there helped him to learn how to walk, talk, and dress himself all over again.

Willis reportedly passed away November 11, 2016.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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