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David Roback played himself in the 2004 film Clean

By Robyn Merrett
February 26, 2020 12:25 AM
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David Roback
Credit: Lloyd Bishop/NBC

Guitarist David Roback has died. He was 61.

Roback’s publicist confirmed his death to the Los Angeles Times and NBC News.

Most known as the co-founder of rock band Mazzy Star, Roback was born in Los Angeles.

Before his days in Mazzy Star, Roback was active in the Paisley Underground scene — an alternative genre of music — in Los Angeles during the 1980s. He went on to become the leader of the band Rain Parade, NBC News reported.

He later left the band in 1983 after the release of their first album Emergency Third Rail Power Trip, the LA Times reported. He then joined Rainy Day.

Roback also left that group and formed Opal with singer Kendra Smith.

Smith was later replaced by Hope Sandoval before Roback changed the name of the band to Mazzy Star in 1989.

David Roback, Hope Sandova
David Roback, Hope Sandoval
| Credit: Lloyd Bishop/NBC
Hope Sandoval, Dave Roback, Jill Emery, and Keith Mitchell
Mazzy Star in 1994
| Credit: Lindsay Brice/Getty Images

Over the years, Mazzy Star comprised of Sandoval, Roback Colm Ó Cíosóig, Jill Emery, Keith Mitchel, Suki Ewers and William Cooper.

The group is most known for their songs “Fade Into You” from their album So Tonight That I Might See, which was released in 1993 and “Halah” and “Blue Flower” from their debut album She Hangs Brightly, which was released in 1990.

“Fade Into You” peaked at number 44 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

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The group most recently performed at Coachella in 2012.

Mazzy Star’s music has been featured in a number of movies and television shows including Netflix’s Tall Girl, series American Horror Story, Rick and Morty and True Blood.

Roback even played himself in the 2004 film Clean, which follows a woman who is arrested for heroin possession after her partner fatally overdoses.

“Very sad David Roback died. I always loved his music,” guitarist and songwriter J Mascis tweeted.

“Thank you for the music David Roback,” a fan wrote.

“Wow, David Roback. His music has been a constant in my listening life. RIP,” a different fan tweeted.