Musician John Hartman, co-founder and original drummer of the Doobie Brothers, has died aged 72.
The band announced Hartman’s death Thursday on its official social media pages, calling Hartman “a wild spirit, a great spirit and a showman.”
“Today we think of John Hartman, or Little John for us,” the band said. “John was a wild spirit, a great drummer and a showman during his time in the Doobies.
“He was also a close friend for many years and an integral part of the band’s personality!”
The Virginia native had two stints with the rock band from the early 1970s to the early 1990s.
Hartman formed the band after meeting frontman Tom Johnston and later guitarist Pat Simmons in Northern California in 1969.
Their 1971 self-titled debut album didn’t make a big splash on the charts, but their second studio album, “Toulouse Street,” became an instant fan favorite thanks to songs like “Listen to the Music” and “Jesus is Just Okay”. .” The album peaked at number 21 on the Billboard 200 chart in 1972.
In 1979, after eight studio albums, Hartman left the group before the release of their ninth album, “One Step Closer,” after a tense Japanese tour, according to Rolling Stone.
“Everything was falling apart,” Hartman said.
Ten years later, in 1989, Hartman returned for the album “Cycles” and “Brotherhood” in 1991 before leaving the band again, this time for good, in 1992.
In 2020, Hartman and fellow surviving band members Jeff ‘Skunk’ Baxter, Michael Hossack, Tom Johnston, Keith Knudsen, Michael McDonald, John McFee, Tiran Porter and Patrick Simmons were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
New York Post