Gary Wright, singer-songwriter known for hit Dream Weaver and playing with George Harrison, dies at 80 after Parkinson's and dementia struggle

Final note: Gary Wright, the musician known for the 1976 hit Dream Weaver, has died at the age of 80. Gary's son Justin Wright told TMZ that his father died on Monday morning at his home in California's Palos Verdes Estates after battling Parkinson's and dementia; seen in 2014 in NYC
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Gary Wright, the musician known for the 1976 hit Dream Weaver and major work on former Beatle George Harrison’s greatest solo album, has died at the age of 80.

Gary’s son Justin Wright told TMZ that his father died on Monday morning at his home in California’s Palos Verdes Estates.

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He said the singer–songwriter had been battling Parkinson’s disease for five to six years, and more recently had developed Lewy body dementia.

Justin added that the composer’s Parkinson’s symptoms had gotten considerably worse in the past year, unfortunately leaving Gary without the ability to speak or move much.

He added that home nurses who had cared for the musician informed his family members a few days ago that he was nearing the end.

Final note: Gary Wright, the musician known for the 1976 hit Dream Weaver, has died at the age of 80. Gary’s son Justin Wright told TMZ that his father died on Monday morning at his home in California’s Palos Verdes Estates after battling Parkinson’s and dementia; seen in 2014 in NYC

After a private health battle: Gary's son Justin Wright told TMZ that his father died on Monday morning at his home in California 's Palos Verdes Estates

After a private health battle: Gary’s son Justin Wright told TMZ that his father died on Monday morning at his home in California ‘s Palos Verdes Estates

Following news of his death, tributes began pouring online, with many remarking on his legacy and contribution to music. 

‘It is with great sadness that I received the news of my dear friend Gary Wright’s passing. The attached photos hold precious memories from the very first and last time we shared the stage together, alongside our mutual musical pal John Ford Coley,’ Stephen Bishop tweeted. ‘Gary’s vibrant personality and exceptional talent made every moment together truly enjoyable.’

The two-time Grammy nominee continued: ‘His legacy will live on for many years to come. I will always cherish the warmth and kindness shown to me by Gary and his wife Rose, and I will forever hold dear the stories he shared with me about days gone by. My heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends, and fans during this difficult time.’ 

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‘So sorry to hear about the passing of Gary Wright. He was one of the nicest rock stars I ever had the pleasure of interviewing, and he leaves behind a wonderful body of work. Condolences to his family, friends and fans,’ radio personality, Andre Gardner, wrote on Twitter.

Another, who seemingly was also referencing Margaritaville singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett’s passing over the weekend, tweeted: ‘Rest in peace Gary Wright. It seems like everything and everyone is fading away.’

Singer-songwriter Al Stewart, best known for his 1976 hit single Year of the Cat, also took to the platform to mourn the loss of his longtime pal.

‘Rest in peace, Gary Wright. Al and Gary were friends for a long time, and it was Gary who introduced Al to his touring band, The Empty Pockets. Al and Jill Stewart would like to send their condolences to Gary’s wife, Rose, and his family,’ he tweeted. 

His highest-charting songs, Dream Weaver and Love Is Alive both peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. 

'It is with great sadness that I received the news of my dear friend Gary Wright's passing. The attached photos hold precious memories from the very first and last time we shared the stage together, alongside our mutual musical pal John Ford Coley,' Stephen Bishop tweeted. 'Gary's vibrant personality and exceptional talent made every moment together truly enjoyable'

‘It is with great sadness that I received the news of my dear friend Gary Wright’s passing. The attached photos hold precious memories from the very first and last time we shared the stage together, alongside our mutual musical pal John Ford Coley,’ Stephen Bishop tweeted. ‘Gary’s vibrant personality and exceptional talent made every moment together truly enjoyable’

RIP: Following news of his death, tributes began pouring online, with many remarking on his legacy and contribution to music

RIP: Following news of his death, tributes began pouring online, with many remarking on his legacy and contribution to music

Grieving: Singer-songwriter Al Stewart, best known for his 1976 hit single Year of the Cat, also took to the platform to mourn the loss of his longtime pal

Grieving: Singer-songwriter Al Stewart, best known for his 1976 hit single Year of the Cat, also took to the platform to mourn the loss of his longtime pal

He was born and raised in Cresskill, New Jersey. 

At just seven, he made his TV debut at the age of seven on the show Captain Video and His Video Rangers. 

This sparked his love of the entertainment industry, and led him to appear in various TV and radio commercials, before landing a role in 1954 Broadway production of the musical Fanny. 

He spent two years with the production, starring opposite of Florence Henderson. 

During his adolescence, he studied piano and organ and led to him performing in various local rock bands with his peers while attending Tenafly High School. 

Music lover: During his adolescence, he studied piano and organ and led to him performing in various local rock bands with his peers while attending Tenafly High School; seen in 1978

Music lover: During his adolescence, he studied piano and organ and led to him performing in various local rock bands with his peers while attending Tenafly High School; seen in 1978

Smart and talented: Out of feat that pursuing music was 'too unstable' of a career choice, Wright studied to become a doctor at the College of William & Mary in Virginia and New York University before attending Downstate Medical College for a year (seen in 2019)

Smart and talented: Out of feat that pursuing music was ‘too unstable’ of a career choice, Wright studied to become a doctor at the College of William & Mary in Virginia and New York University before attending Downstate Medical College for a year (seen in 2019)

Out of feat that pursuing music was ‘too unstable’ of a career choice, Wright studied to become a doctor at the College of William & Mary in Virginia and New York University before attending Downstate Medical College for a year. 

As he specialized in psychology, he continued to perform with local bands, according to an interview with the radio station, 100.3 The Sound

Ultimately, he completed his studies at the Free University of Berlin, before finally abandoning his plans to pursue medicine.

He previously cited his musical influences as h rock ‘n’ roll artists Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis, and the Beatles as well as Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and James Brown. 

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