SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Toy Caldwell
Marshall Tucker Band
SPARTANBURG, S.C. -- Toy T. Caldwell Jr., former lead guitar player and singer for the Marshall Tucker Band, died yesterday, and the cause was under investigation, a coroner said.
Mr. Caldwell's body was found by his wife, Abbie Good Caldwell, at their home in Moore, about 80 miles northwest of Columbia, said Bill Doble, vice president of music for Cabin Fever Entertainment, for whom Mr. Caldwell recorded. Mr. Doble said Mr. Caldwell, 45, had been ill with influenza and bronchitis.
Spartanburg County Coroner Jim Burnett said Mr. Caldwell visited a doctor Wednesday complaining of a headache, coughing and congestion.
"The physician says he can't certify the cause and manner of death and has asked our office to investigate," Dr. Burnett said. He would not elaborate. An autopsy was scheduled for today, he said.
George McCorkle, a founding member of the Marshall Tucker Band, said he and Mr. Caldwell grew up in Spartanburg and played music after school.
"It's a tragic loss to me, and to the music industry," Mr. McCorkle said, describing Mr. Caldwell as "the most jovial, bighearted human being."
The Marshall Tucker Band had seven gold and two platinum albums, peaking in the mid-1970s with songs such as "Heard It in a Love Song," "Can't You See" and "This Ol' Cowboy."
After 15 years with the band, he left in 1985 to begin a solo career. Last fall, he released his debut album, "Toy Caldwell," a mix of rock 'n' roll, country, blues and pop with a lyrical thread of romantic entanglements.
"My name will always be associated with the Marshall Tucker Band and I'm proud it is," he said last fall. "They are good memories."
Mr. Caldwell had a "lightning fast thumb" on guitar, Mr. McCorkle said.
He played guitar on albums by country stars Hank Williams Jr., Waylon Jennings, Barbara Mandrell and Conway Twitty, among others.
L Among his songwriting credits is the anthem "Can't You See."
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