Danny Federici: R.I.P.

Bruce and Phantom Dan.

The longtime glockenspiel / accordion / organ / keyboard player for the E Street Band is gone.

Federici had taken a leave of absence from the band in November to seek treatment for melanoma.

But he returned for a coda on March 20 in Indianapolis, where the set list included a rare performance of "4th Of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)," the 1973 song that spotlights Federici's accordion work.

He was 58.

To quote one Bruce Springsteen:
They say you can't take it with you, but I think that they're wrong
'Cause all I know is I woke up this morning, and something big was gone
Gone into that dark ether where you're still young and hard and cold
Just like when they built you, brother, they broke the mold

By J. Freedom du Lac |  April 18, 2008; 10:35 AM ET Passings , Springsteen
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I saw the concert Monday night in Houston, and hoped, when I saw the accordian brought out on stage, that maybe Danny was well enough to play again. Obviously, not so.

The band had to know that Danny was in dire straits, and the fact that they gave such an inspired and powerful show was just amazing.

God Bless Danny, his family, and the E-Street family

Posted by: John D in Houston | April 18, 2008 2:09 PM

Quite sad to hear. I guess we got lucky at our shows since he left the band not too long after that. Very much the unhearalded backend of the band. Rest in a well earned peace Danny.

Posted by: EricS | April 18, 2008 3:05 PM

The news of Danny Federici's passing has special meaning for me. I moved to the small New Jersey town of Flemington in 1978 at 16 and was introduced to Bruce Springsteen's music by my first close friend in high school. I soon learned that Danny Federici's mother lived across the street and met him and many members of the band, including Bruce, long before they were bona fide superstars. I cherish an autographed copy of Greetings from Asbury Park and Growin' Up remains one of my
favorite Springsteen songs of all time. The soulful sound of Danny's Hammond B3 organ and accordion will be missed on future tours.

Posted by: Jersey Boy | April 18, 2008 3:16 PM

Farewell Phantom Dan. You were truly Tougher Than the Rest.

Posted by: Kid TJ | April 18, 2008 3:27 PM

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