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Published: 2013/08/15

Allen Lanier, Founding Member of Blue Oyster Cult, 1946-2013

Allen Lanier, founding keyboardist and rhythm guitarist for Long Island rock legends Blue Öyster Cult, passed away yesterday following a lengthy battle with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. He was 67.

Lanier joined the band’s immediate predecessor Soft White Underbelly, which formed near Stony Brook University on Long Island in 1967. Lanier started playing keyboards but added guitar and bass to his list of contributions by the time the band recorded their debut album in 1971. Lanier appeared on every successive album through 1983’s The Revölution By Night, including Agents of Fortune, the 1976 album that contains the band’s biggest hit, “Don’t Fear The Reaper.” Lanier rejoined the band for 1998’s Imaginos, and remained with the band until 2006, shortly before he retired from touring. Lanier made one last appearance with the band for their 40th anniversary concert in New York in 2012.

The band posted this formal announcement on their website:

We have extremely sad news to report.

We’ve lost our friend and bandmate Allen Lanier.

Allen succumbed to complications from C.O.P.D. 
He is survived by his wife Dory, sister Mary Anne and mother Martha.

Although he retired from touring in 2006 Allen returned to the stage for what turned out to be his final appearance, reuniting with BÖC at the 40th Anniversary show in New York this past November.

DFTR sweet man. We love you and miss you.

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