Robert Wayne Birch, Elton John’s Bassist, Found Dead

Robert Wayne Birch Elton JohnMusician Robert Wayne Birch, who recorded and toured with Elton John for decades, has been found dead in the Los Angeles area from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head in the early hours of Wednesday.

Reuters reports that Los Angeles County Assistant Coroner Chief Ed Winter said Birch’s body was found in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles a little after 1:00 AM PT. Winter said the case is “being investigated as a suicide.”

According to TMZ, there were no apparent signs of drug use and no suicide note was found.

Birch, who was 56 at the time of his death, began touring with Elton John in the 1990s, playing both bass and saxophone. While he spent most of the last 20 years working with John, he also played with musical greats such as B.B. King, Tina Turner, Stevie Wonder, and Eric Clapton.

[Photo Credit: Getty Images]


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Celebrity Editor Abbey Stone hails from the fair isle of Martha's Vineyard, a lovely, vaguely dinosaur-shaped spot of land located off the coast of Cape Cod, MA, that is best known for exporting preppy salmon-colored pants. But the bright lights of New York City beckoned, and Abbey was lured away from her coastal haven to attend Barnard College. She graduated in 2010 with a degree in English and a much less useful minor in Dance. Abbey has been published in Dance Magazine, The Huffington Post, Time Out New York, and Popstar! magazine (where she learned more than she ever wanted to know about Justin Bieber). Abbey now lives in Brooklyn, where she spends her days watching stupid Internet videos and reading pretentious books.