Marshall Tucker Band guitarist Stuart Swanlund died from natural causes at his Chicago home this past Saturday, August 4, 2012. News started circulating of his death Sunday night after Charlie Daniels tweeted “I just got word before I went on stage that my friend Stuart Swanlund guitar player with the Marshall Tucker Band had passed away, so sad.”
Clay Cook, who played with Swanlund in the Marshall Tucker Band and is now in the Zac Brown Band, tweeted, “RIP Stuart Swanlund. You were a great musician & an even better bandmate. I hope you find some peace.”
“Stuart, or ‘Stubie’ as we called him, was the longest standing member of The Marshall Tucker Band from 1985, onward,” said Marshall Tucker Band founding member Doug Gray in a prepared statement. “He recently took a hiatus from the road due to health problems and even with those issues, Stuart’s enthusiasm onstage never waivered. Our thoughts and prayers are with Stuart’s family and those who knew him. We have lost a great friend.”
Stuart Craig Swanlund was born in Puerto Rico on April 3, 1958. Swanlund was reared in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where he would sit on his grandmother’s porch and listen to Doug Gray, who was his neighbor, rehearse with a rock and roll band across the street. He was only five years old, and had no way of knowing he’d one day play alongside Gray and The Marshall Tucker Band.
Swanlund joined the band in 1985, around the time when they were moving from their jam based roots to a more traditional country sound. He played on singles including “Driving You Out Of My Mind” and “Walk Outside The Lines.”
He is survived by his son, William “Billy” Swanlund, his lifelong partner Stacey Schmaren, three grandchildren and sister, Suzanne Spencer. He was 54 years old.
The Marshall Tucker Band, who consistently tour, were in the midst of a string of U.S. dates, play the Northwest Ohio Rib-Off in Maumee, Ohio this Thursday (August 9). Doug Gray said in a statement that “Stuart would want the band to carry on, so in his honor, we will continue on with our scheduled tour dates without any cancellations and will dedicate all shows to his memory. We plan on being at Saturday’s funeral services and it’s safe to say that many band members of the past will also be on-hand to honor and remember Stuart.”
Funeral services will be held this Saturday, August 11 at 11:00 AM at the Good Shepherd Memorial Park in Boiling Springs, SC.
Flowers and cards may be sent to:
Good Shepherd Memorial Park
4164 Hwy 9
Boiling Springs, SC 29316
— Brian Ives, CBS Local