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3 Sep 2009

Guy Babylon (Dec. 20, 1956-Sept. 2, 2009)

Guy died in Los Angeles on Wednesday, September 2, where he suffered a heart attack while swimming in the pool. "He was one of the most brilliant musicians I ever knew, a true genius, a gentle angel - and I loved him so much" said Elton when he heard the tragic news, as eltonjohn.com explained. Bernie, also in his website, sent out words and prayers to Babylon's family, remarking his "warm and gracious presence in any room he entered".

Highly respected in his field, Guy composed music for radio, TV and cable shows, doing demo work for bands and songwriters, and putting together a home studio in North Hollywood. He also won a Grammy Award in 2001 for his work arranging the stage musical Aida, by Elton and Tim Rice.

When I have the opportunity to interview Jan Kemp, the owner of the fantastic website about Guy Babylon, www.guybabylonfan.net, last 8th June, 2008, she explained us how Babylon was introduced in Elton John Band: "As Guy has told it, when Davey was producing a band called Jace, which Guy had previously worked with. The band had asked Davey if it was alright to invite Guy to play keyboards on the session and Davey said yes. Per Guy, he and Davey got on well during the session, but he didn't talk to him after that, until about a year or so later when Davey called to ask Guy if he would be interested in doing some live stuff with Elton. As Guy often says, his motto is to always be ready for anything, so he jumped at the chance."

Guy also created musical intros to some of the tour's opening numbers, including Bennie And The Jets (1989), Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me, (1992) and Pinball Wizard (1993), and reinterpreted the synthesizer intro to Funeral For A Friend for the live shows.

"He usually stays in the background but he is a huge talent and definitely deserves some recognition" added Jan. Without question, he has the recognition of the eltonite community, I am sure.

Now "Song For Guy" takes another sense. Rest in peace, Guy Babylon. I will never ever forget you. My deep condolences to his family; to Kathy, his wife; his parents and his loving children.

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