Jimmy Greenspoon, the keyboard player with Three Dog Night on their countless hit singles and albums from the late 1960s to the mid-1970s, died of metastatic melanoma on Wednesday (March 11), at the age 67. He had announced his illness last October.
“We are very saddened at the passing of our dear friend and longtime band mate, Jimmy Greenspoon,” wrote his fellow group members on their Facebook page. “Jimmy died peacefully at home today surrounded by his family. Please keep him and his loved ones in your prayers and your hearts.”
Born in Beverly Hills, California, Greenspoon played with his surf band the New Dimensions in his school years. He was one of the four extra musicians hired by TDN founders Danny Hutton, Cory Wells and Chuck Negron when they extended the band line-up to seven, in 1968. They then had a spectacular run of success, especially in the US, where they racked up 21 top 40 singles in a row, a platinum-selling debut album and 11 further consecutive gold albums thereafter.
Greenspoon’s organ and electric piano became an integral part of the Three Dog Night sound as they amassed three No. 1 singles, with ‘Mama Told Me Not To Come’ (written by Randy Newman), ‘Joy To The World’ and ‘Black and White.’ They had eight further top ten hits, including ‘One, ‘Easy To Be Hard,’ ‘Liar,’ ‘An Old Fashioned Love Song’ and ‘Never Been To Spain.’
The band split in 1976, and Jimmy went on to play with Lowell George, Beck, Bogert & Appice and others, reuniting with TDN in 1981 and playing with the touring band until recently.
Listen to Three Dog Night’s ‘The Collection’ on Spotify