The Born to Run saxophonist, Clarence Clemons, completed his life’s journey on Saturday night.
Clarence, who died at the age of 69 after suffering a stroke last week, was the heart and soul of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band for close to four decades. With his bold and funky saxophone sound, he helped Bruce and the band reach international success.
“Clarence lived a wonderful life,” Bruce, aka The Boss said, said in a statement. “He carried within him a love of people that made them love him. He created a wondrous and extended family.”
Bruce wasn’t the only singer to benefit from the Big Man’s talent. According to E! Online, Clarence worked with artists like Ringo Starr, Roy Orbison, and most recently, Lady Gaga for the single “The Edge of Glory.”
He also recorded solo albums and made cameos on the big screen (Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure and Fatal Instinct) and the small screen ("The Simpsons" and "Diff’rent Strokes").
Even though Clarence recently had double-knee replacement and back surgery, which led to some wheelchair use, he fought through and continued to play his saxophone until the end.
In a 2008 interview with All Access magazine, Clarence said, “The saxophone is really an extension of me; it’s what I’m saying without words. It’s my heart, my emotions, my real feeling through the sax. And when I can do that then I’ve done my job.”
— LeAndra Valentine