Skip to content

Guitarist Roy Gaines expires


Roy Gaines, a blues and jazz musician who played guitar with Billie Holiday, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, and many more, died on Aug. 11 at the age of 83.

Born in Waskom, Texas, Roy Gaines started out playing piano in the style of Nat “King” Cole at an early age, and then switched to the guitar when he was 14. An unabashed admirer of fellow Texan T-Bone Walker, Gaines met his idol as a youth and modeled his own playing after Walker ‘s groundbreaking style, later performing and recording with the pioneering electric bluesman.

According to a tweet, Gaines played in Chuck Willis’ & Ray Charles band’s in the 50s & 60s; made scorching blues 45s in the 50s; and played on countless sessions with Gladys Knight and the  Everly’s. Gains later ran his own blues label.

A wake for Gaines will be held Monday, Aug. 30 at the  Inglewood Mortuary, 1206 Centinela Ave., Inglewood, Ca. with viewing from 1 to 4 p.m.

The funeral will be held Tuesday, Aug. 31 at True Vine Baptist Church, 1437 Centinela Ave., Inglewood, CA 90302 at 1:30 p.m.

Burial services are on Wednesday, Sept. 1, at the VA Cemetery in Riverside, CA at 10:45 a.m.

Visit websites or call ahead to learn of COVID-19 guidelines at each location. For more information on Gaines, visit