The singer-songwriter is remembered for his stunning version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”
Jeff Buckley was born on this day in 1966
Jeff Buckley was born on November 17th, 1966 in Orange, California, the son of the famous Folk singer-songwriter Tim Buckley. Jeff was raised by his mother and stepfather, Ron Moorhead, in Southern California.Buckley moved many times in and around Orange County while growing up, an upbringing Buckley called “rootless trailer trash.” As a child, Buckley was known as Scott “Scottie” Moorhead based on his middle name and his stepfather’s surname. Despite being the son of Tim Buckley, he only met him once at the age of 8, Tim died of a drug overdose in 1975. His stepfather introduced him to Led Zeppelin, Queen, Jimi Hendrix, the Who, and Pink Floyd at an early age which were his first influences. Later in his life he discovered John Cale, Leonard Cohen and Nina Simone among many others that shaped his songwriting. Buckley came to prominence in 1994 when he released his debut album “Grace”, his signature song became “Hallelujah”, a Leonard Cohen cover that Buckley popularized by doing a completely version of it so strong, that even made some people believe it was his own original composition. “Hallelujah” remains Buckley’s most well known song. On the evening of May 29, 1997, Buckley’s band flew to Memphis intending to join him in his studio there to work on the newly written material. The same evening, Buckley went swimming in Wolf River Harbor, a slack water channel of the Mississippi River, while wearing boots and all of his clothing and singing the chorus of the song “Whole Lotta Love” by Led Zeppelin.Buckley had gone swimming there several times before. A roadie in Buckley’s band, Keith Foti, remained onshore. After moving a radio and guitar out of reach of the wake from a passing tugboat, Foti looked up to see that Buckley had vanished. Despite a determined rescue effort that night, Buckley remained missing. On June 4, two locals spotted his body in the Wolf River near a riverboat, and he was brought to land.Jeff Buckley tragic death put an end to one of the 1990’s most promising singer-songwriters, he has since developed a cult-following. Today he would had turned 51.
Watch Jeff Buckley performing “Hallelujah”
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