Bob Welch Dead: Former Fleetwood Mac Member Committed Suicide

    June 7, 2012
    Amanda Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

Bob Welch, who played guitar and sang in early incarnations of the band Fleetwood Mac, was found dead in his Nashville home on Thursday by his wife. Welch apparently shot himself in the chest after leaving a suicide note. He was 66-years old.

Welch led an interesting life, moving to Paris as a young man to study French and joining Fleetwood Mac upon his return to the states in the ’70s. He played with the band through five of their early albums but never saw the success they later enjoyed with the album “Rumours”. The band would become known almost as much for their internal drama as they were for their music, with different members forming relationships with one another and causing tension within the group. Welch was long gone by then, forming his own bands in France and, later, in Arizona and Nashville.

He suffered undisclosed health problems in recent years, but officials aren’t disclosing what they were at this time or if they were related to his suicide. Although Welch had a disagreement with his former bandmates due to a royalty dispute, they remembered him fondly today. Singer Stevie Nicks issued a statement on her old friend:

“He was an amazing guitar player – he was funny, sweet – and he was smart – I’m so very sorry for his family and for the family of Fleetwood Mac – so, so sad,” Nicks said.

Welch once said he never thought he would make an impact on the world and never set out to.

“I just wanted to play guitar in a good band,” he said. “I wanted to make the music I love. I wanted to travel the world and have adventures.”

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    • Chuck McGlothlin

      They say theres a place out in Mexico where a man can fly over mountains and hills, they don’t need an airplane engine and never will…. perhaps Bob has found that place… forever here yet there with the hearts and minds he lifted!! We will remeber you!

  • mark

    Any bare tree, will always have an image of bob welch on the sunny side of the tree.

    • Kevin

      Nice. Bare Trees is my favorite.

  • http://scallywagandvagabond.com scallywag

    How ironic and yet so perfect that the man who imbued his legend playing sentimental relics and being the odd man out (could that be what finally pushed him over the edge?) chooses to go out in a bitter sweet way, his own way of course…


  • Buc

    I grew up in the 70’s and just couldn’t wait for Ebony Eyes to come on the radio so you could crank it up. Great tune from a great musician. RIP Bob.

  • pete

    What a tradegy. Bob Welch was an integral part of early Mac. A great songwriter,guitar player and singer. One of my all time favorites. Sorry he had to go this way.

  • mike

    The girl at the table looks like Salena Gomez….

  • Jim

    Bob did make his mark with music. Ebony Eyes was huge hit with me and most of my friends.

    • Gary Hart

      Bob Welch and his music had a huge memory stamp on me…in the wonderful year of 1978..in particular the WINTER of 1978..when the quality of what was on the radio was nothing less than staggering..led by the post Christmas 1977 release of Saturday Night Fever and how those cold winter months in early 1978 belonged to the Brothers Gibb (and younger brother Andy had his second hit LOVE IS THICKER THAN WATER rise to the top as well. Nevertheless, as somebody once said talent like water reaches a level, there was Bob Welch and his beautiful “Sentimental Lady” for us all to enjoy. This was just the first of a handful of Top 40 hits Bob would enjoy : “Ebony Eyes”, “Precious Love” etc. RIP Mr. Welch

  • David Voss

    I don’t know why it takes someone to pass away to remember the great music I loved growing up…..RIP Bob….Precious Love was the best back in the day.

  • OldTimer

    I wonder if anyone remembers Peter Green when he played guitar in Fleetwood Mac? I am sure Carlos Santana does, since he ripped off “Black Magic Woman” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Magic_Woman

  • Michael Seibert

    Bob was a friend for 37 years, we talked last week and there was no clue of his state of mind. On wednesday his doctors informed him he
    would never recover from the major surgey he had two months ago, he
    would eventually become an invalid. The massive pain he was in and the
    hopelessness of his situtation must have pushed him over the edge.
    Bob was a kind, carring, positive person rarely ever given to anger or
    dispair….I’ve lost my best friend, and can now only hear his voice in his music.

    Michael Seibert

    • Sharon

      I am so sorry for your loss. How sad that he could not cope with what lied ahead for him. I loved his music and I too am sad. God Bless you and his family. He will be missed.

      • Steve

        Future Games and Hypnotized are two of the best songs ever written in my mind!I hope this brings about a new wave of his music. He was a great and unique artist.

    • Shay

      Sorry for your loss Michael Seibert. Very sad news.

    • Martin

      I’m so sorry for your loss and the loss of his family.We do have his voice in his music as you mentioned…and we are thankful for that.

    • kenneth

      so sorry for the loss of your friend and an artists that I enjoyed so much back in the 70’s…..Physical pain can leave you without hope…..I had a triple spinal fusion surgery for a broken back suffered this past summer and I can relate to his just wanting it to END….keep the memories of the fun times close to your heart……again…sorry for all the fans…but more so for his friends and family..

    • buckeyegirl

      I am sorry for your loss Mr Seibert. Thanks for your personal insight. Its too bad in the state of TN he would have to resort to ending his life in this manner. Euthansia in this instance would be justifiable in WA. Peace to you and his family. He is definetly in a better place playing his guitar and finding new adventures.

  • Sharon

    To commit suicide is one thing. But to shoot a gun into your own chest WOW…he had to really be suffering inside. The man had to be a genius, as many do commit suicide. My thoughts go out to his family and friends. God please forgive him for he must not have been in his right mind. Loved his music…some of my favorite songs. Thank you for them! Rest in Peace,

    • Jeff

      The man “had to be a genius” because he committed suicide? Wow, what a stupid statement. I think he was physically suffering and chose to end it, which I wholly support for geniuses and idiots alike.

  • http://yahoo Ken

    Sentimental Lady has always been one of my favorite songs. The “Bare Trees” album is timeless.

  • Lisa

    I loved Eboney Eyes, and I think it’s so wrong that he was not included in the Hall of Fame tribute. I hope it makes Fleetwood Mac Band feel pretty bad!

  • Ted

    It never ceases to amaze me how the music makes us all feel. As a ’78 HS graduate, I always knew that as far as Rock and Roll, I was growing up in the worst (Disco) time for my musical tastes, while for others (Disco) it was a great time…..RIP Bob!

    • Jeff


      There was plenty of other music besides disco. I’ve never owned a disco album and I grew up in the 70s and 80s.

      • The Ikester

        There was other music besides disco, but you wouldn’t not it by the incessant devotion to it by most radio stations through out the country. If they weren’t playing the Bee Gees, they played KC and the Sunshine Band, then back to the Bee Gees, then KC again. Throw in some Gloria Gaynor. Back to the Bee Gees. It was MADNESS! aaahhhhhh! (sorry, I lost my head there a bit, looking back).

      • Deano

        Correct. Variety is what made the 70’s so great and unique.
        R&R, Punk, Reggae, Disco, R&B. Ted must have been from Brooklyn where all they played was Disco. Here in Atlanta, just pushed that hard wired button on the stereo and switch from the Bee Gee’s to Led Zeppelin……..

  • Steve

    Wow, how sad. He must have been in some unbearable situation. My Favorite version of Fleetwood Mac was when he and Christine McVie headed the band. Fav. album: Mystery to Me…RIP Bob

  • Mitchel McGuire

    I just died a littel

  • Keith

    I did not know lip syncing existed in the 70’s. It was obvious in that video. I loved his hits. I wish he had more. Ebony Eyes was my favorite. Sad to see him go. He must have ended his life because he did not want to suffer. RIP Bob.

  • http://perezhiltonlesliesiegel.blogspot.com Leslie Siegel

    OMG, another suicide. They are all doing it like my father, the same month and time and reasons! DEPRESSION is the culprit. When you get to a certain age, you realize life sucks. That’s why I got baptized before I would it too. The world is a mess. I wish God would come and kill us all!

    • nothingman

      You are a sad sad fool. Sure life may suck , but at least you are lucky enough to have a sucky life. It makes you enjoy the short fleeting moments of joy so much more when they happen.

      • http://perezhiltonlesliesiegel.blogspot.com Leslie Siegel

        Why do you have to be so mean, it’s just what I said, the world is a cruel place. My own father took his life when things didn’t go his way with aging and money! Nothing changes, but soon these days will melt like molten lava as God will clean house with Fire! I cannot wait for that day. I will join him in his kingdom!

    • Bill

      This is a reply to Leslie Siegal (hope I spelt last name correctly). Your comments touched me. Just because others give in to despair doesn’t mean you have to. Jesus tells us that in this world we will have trouble and tribulation; but He also encourages us to take heart, for He has overcome the world. I hope you can find comfort in Him and I will pray for you. Lastly, please don’t wish God to come and kill us all. Read 2 Peter 3 and Revelation. The great and terrible day of the Lord is going to be terrifying to everone, even those who believe. May His peace be upon you and the families who have soffered loss.

      • http://perezhiltonlesliesiegel.blogspot.com Leslie Siegel

        Thanks Bill, I so appreciate a bit of support in my own pain from hearing such a sad thing as another suicide, some other idiot called me an idiot for posting my post. What is with the kids of the 1990’s all grown up and snotty!

  • Paul

    Bob Welch should be in the Rock & Roll Hal of Fame with his former bandmates, but they RRHOF decided that they should only put the most successful version of the band in the hall. Not only an injustice to Bob but to Danny Kirwen, Jeremy Spencer, Peter Green (the founder of the band)and all the other musicians that got Fleetwood Mac to that point before Buckingham and Nicks joining on. “Sentimental Lady” was on the Fleetwood Mac album “Mystery To Me” before it was ever a solo hit for Bob Welch. Bob & Christine McVie wrap their harmonies around it in a way that didn’t happen on the hit version. Put Bob in the RRHOF posthumously please!

    • Michael Seibert

      Christine did sing with Bob on the French Kiss version of Sentimental Lady, I was there when it was recorded.
      You can hear Christine in the mix.

  • chris

    When I got married in 1982 Sentimental Lady was our first dance.Very sad news.

  • Jeff

    Never owned his albums, but recognize all his songs. He was an integral part to my youth. Bless him and his family.

  • Sharklady

    Loved the song “Sentimental Lady” by Bob. Hopefully, he’s in Rock & Roll Heaven. RIP, good man.

  • lane

    and it seems like a dream…got me hypnotized….beautiful song

    • rabaker352

      “Hypnotized,” one of the greatest pop-rock songs of all times.

  • midwest Mike

    I wasn’t aware of his Fleetwood Mac connection, but one of my favorite 8 track tapes was his French Kiss album in the 70’s. He was a very talented musician RIP Bob Welch

  • Dee

    Thanks for the memories Bob- I remember making out to “Ebony Eyes” with my future hubby-getn old suks

  • francisco meyer

    I much prefer the old fleetwood mac, green, spencer kirwan, welch weston, perfect. green and spencer from mayall brought a great blues rock sound and welch with his mystic themes were a stark contrast to the top 40 stuff of nick and buckingham. bob welch will be missed.

  • Sharon

    French Kiss. Favorite album of mine from that period. R.I.P.

  • http://www.lightbulbu.com light bulbs

    Wow so sad. He still could have been a great musician for other groups

  • arnel

    RIP Bob – my favorite – SENTIMENTAL LADY

  • texmark

    Ken and others, Ditto on bare trees, also his solo work. Michael S I am sorry you lost your friend. I did get to see him in concert way back when he did his first solo tour and he also came on with Flettwood Mac for a song or two at a concert I attended. I could see the tension between them at that one as they hurried him off the stage.

  • John Logo

    Sentimental Lady, is the song I´ve always enjoyed from him. Rally sorry about his death. Why didn´t he take shelter in God? I’m not a religious man but I’m pretty certain that if you don’t have God, you’re lost. My condolences to Bob’s family.

    • Kenneth E. MacAlister Jr.

      You’re exactly right John. Without God a person is lost. There is nothing, irepeat nothing we as sinful human beings can do to save ourselves from God’s righteous judgenment. Only faith In Jesus Christ, God’s only Son can bridge the devide between sinners & a Holy God. Suicide is not only selfish (think how his wife must feel right now), but is basically the same as telling God, “I don’t want your help because I don’t trust you.” Anyone who believes suicide is the answer to life’s problems needs to get to know God though His Son before they do as Bob Welch did & separate themselves from God eternally. Suicide is not the answer!

  • Sandra

    Wow! Remember how great rock music used to be. The universe really is running down.

  • Ron Medlin

    Bob Welch was/is one of my favorites from the 70’s. Mac’s music was very different then and was great in its own right. Bare Trees, Mystery To Me, and Heroes are Hard to Find are great albums…yes album, it was vinyl then and you had to wait to get albums back then. I still listen to Mac’s music from that era. Sorry for Bob’s pain, may he rest in peace!

  • http://webpronews penny barrons

    Saw Bob Welch and Fleetwood Mac at the old Grande Ballroom, Detroit Mic. back in the day- before the girls joined- Great band- sad news

  • Saul Raikis

    Another sad story.

  • Phil

    WHY is all the musicians committing suicide? It seems to be an epidemic amongst them. They all made an impact and yet, they seem like they didn’t………really sad as we all get older, all have health problems, some more than others, but that’s why we have friends! Keep on truckin guys. You will be missed!

    • denise douglass

      i agree with you, it is an epidemic amongst them,,,,,how sad.

  • martin

    If you want to hear FM and Bob at their best you have to give “mystery to me” a listen. And yes it’s pre stevie but great stuff with christine Mcvie”you can actully understand what shes singing”, and the boys

  • Terry Fore

    I have enjoyed Fleetwood Mac’s music from their inception, long before Buckingham and Nicks. The music and band may have become more mainstream and thus more popular with Buckingham and Nicks. I certainly appreciate the Peter Green, Bob Welch era just as much if not better in the long run. Bob was a great band member blending seamlessly into a great blues band. RIP Bob.

  • lane

    Thanks for everything, Bob. My favorite? Hot Love in a Cold World

  • David Keith Gendron

    Bob Welsh’s wonderful spirit IS alive and well, and perhaps communing
    with the likes of George Harrison, Duane Allman and Jimi. etc. on the
    “other side”. I believe he has seen the face of GOD, the Creator. My most sincere condolences to Bob’s wife and family, and to all who knew
    and loved this lovely man and musician. One day I will meet Him in person, I mean… in spirit! Yes! Peace to you all . . . . . D.K.G

  • Joel

    It is clear as day to me from this song from here that Bob created, one has to wonder if this rock band would have ever have the fame and success in the mid and later 70’s if not for Bob’s talent highlighting Fleetwood Mac earlier with Bob at the helm!


  • Sarah

    Mr. Welch was a very sweet and talented man. He will be missed greatly.
    Prayers going out to his wife and friends. I was his neighbor and nurse for three years, and am glad to have known him.

  • http://gkjjkhkhkjh mike caldwell

    ..i suggested to him sometime back that he should tour with the remaining members of spirit..they could do spirit songs and his songs…wish he had taken my suggestion. loved bob welch..”Feels like a dream..got me hypnotized”

    • http://background-recording.blogspot.com Nice Girl

      ATTENTION PEOPLE, you think this is bad, this suicide, well look at this poor uncle of mine whose mom made him sick on purpose so she could get all the attention, you have to see this, it’s even worse than suicide, it’s cruel http://shadows-groken-heart.blogspot.com My POOR UNCLE, see the before and after shots of him. It’s most sad,and look closely at his hands, crooked! And his face in both photos. You see it clearly. Please look, because it has to be seen. Thanks and bless you!

  • Ben


  • Michael

    Truly a great. His Lyrics and music were Fleetwood Mac. Mystry to Me is what got me hooked on Fleetwood Mac.I marvel at his imagination. Piss on the Rock Hall of Fame. It angers me to think whos standards they hold. I dout they heard the early stuff what an infulence what a talent. Bob your in my hall of fame and many like me feel the same. Thank you so much, your music lives on in our hearts and always bring us joy.

  • http://www.gregdelapaix.com Delapaix

    Remember the “Bare Trees” album? I’ll never forget the first time I heard it

  • Brian

    God bless him! I remember a lot of his music and he was a staple of the 70’s. ‘Ebony Eyes,’ ‘Precious Love,’ -which I’d forgotten about- all good stuff. In some ways I think he was better than Fleetwood Mac as a whole.

    • Chris Clarke

      For sure…a true legend. Ebony Eyes ROCKED!!! What a cleanly wriiten perfectly synced song. The man was truly truly talented. I ould only wish to be a fraction as talented. He is already missed by me. Maybe someday I will see him.

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