Guitarist Bernie Marsden passed away

 Bernie Marsden died

A terrible loss for the rock community! The music world mourns the loss of legendary guitarist Bernie Marsden, who passed away yesterday. Bernie Marsden, a former Whitesnake guitarist died at the age of 72.

He played the first guitar for Whitesnake, an early version of UFO, and a number of solo ventures. Bernie touched all our lives with his amazing songs which will live on forever. 

While he may be gone, his soulful artistry will continue inspiring generations to come. Read ahead to learn more information about his passing and Bernie Marsden cause of death.

Bernie Marsden died: What happened to him?

What a guitar player who contributed to the best sound in the band’s history throughout the blues era and the original dual Whitesnake sound!

He was undoubtedly a guitar king in his most recent trilogy of albums, the first of which was issued during the past two years and was titled Kings. 

We are very saddened to hear of the passing of Bernie Marsden and extend our deepest sympathies to Fran and the family during this difficult time.

Apart from being a great guitar player, and songwriter, he was a really nice genuine man. Tributes flooded in for Bernie Marsden on social media with fellow musicians and fans speaking of their admiration for the musician.

Message on social media from Bernie’s family
“On behalf of his family, it is with deep sadness we announce the death of Bernie Marsden. Bernie died peacefully on Thursday evening with his wife, Fran, and daughters, Charlotte and Olivia, by his side. Bernie never lost his passion for music, writing and recording new songs until the end.”

Bernie Marsden cause of death

According to a statement released by his family today (Friday, 25 August), legendary blues rock guitarist and the co-founder of Whitesnake Bernie Marsden passed away peacefully on the evening of Thursday, August 24, 2023, with his wife and daughters by his side. Bernie Marsden cause of death was not yet made public at this time of publication.

According to some reports he was battling with illness before his demise. However, Bernie Marsden cause of death is not confirmed by the family yet. The family’s privacy must also be protected, despite our best efforts to gather important data and quickly offer the most recent updates.

Bernie’s illness before passing

Bernie Marsden, a founding member of Whitesnake, has shared a video message with his followers in which he describes recent health challenges. On August 22, 2022, the guitarist posted a video on social media for the first time in six weeks, revealing that he had surgery in June.

Following the surgery, 71-year-old Marsden said he became ill with “acute dehydration” which resulted in him being hospitalized again for a week.

Calling it “a difficult year”, Marsden apologized to fans for not being able to perform live at the Firestorm Rock Festival in Manchester earlier this month, and for canceling his upcoming show at Norway’s Blues In Hell Festival on 3rd September. However, the good news he’s “feeling much better” and getting “stronger each day.”

Bernie Marsden about his health condition

Bernie Marsden’s full message reads: “Hi guys. It’s been a while since I posted anything. A few things happened in the last couple of months. I had an operation in June and following that operation, I was doing pretty well – getting better – and then I went into acute dehydration which put me in a hospital for about a week.

“I’ve been out of hospital now for nearly a month. I’m feeling much better and I’m getting much stronger. Hopefully, back to square one in a couple of months’ time. It’s been difficult, it’s a slow job and I’m trying to build up the strength and stamina now to get out there and see you guys.

“I really missed the festivals. And I do apologize to anybody who went to those festivals and I know they had a good time with FM and with Chris Buck and everybody. Also, I know they were all there in Manchester. I really, really do regret not being able to go to Norway guys. I was looking forward to that very much.

“But I’m feeling much better, feeling stronger each day, building up slowly and I have a couple of new albums out. ‘Trios’ is doing very well. I really thank you for the ‘Kings’.

“Thank you for the support you’ve given me this year, which has been a difficult year. But here I am trying to look as cool as I can, and I still haven’t had a haircut. So, take care guys. I’ll see you out there soon. Cheers.”

About Bernie’s sickness in 2023

Additionally, his band stated that Bernie’s sickness will prevent him from performing in 2023. Check out the message that was published on the WINTERSTORM website. 


It is with massive sadness that we have to confirm what we have feared for a little time, that Whitesnake legend, Bernie Marsden will not be in a position to fulfill his slot at WinterStorm in Troon in November. We have been advised by Bernie’s agent that the recovery from his illness is taking longer than had been hoped and he is unable to commit to being ready for the November date and is cancelling now. As a special request, Bernie played this for us at the end of that catalyst of a gig back in 2015 – we have used it as the closer for WinterStorm too. Until we meet again, Mr Marsden, We Wish You Well…

Bernie Marsden – True Legend and Lasting Legacy

Bernie Marsden is an English rock and blues guitarist born in Buckingham, England. A professional musician since 1972, he is primarily known for his work with Whitesnake having written or co-written many of the group’s hit songs, most notably the USA number one “Here I Go Again”.

Bernie is also renowned as one of the greatest rock and blues guitarists of all time. Marsden released his autobiography Where’s My Guitar in 2017. The book was updated and reissued by HarperCollins in November 2019.

Musical Career & Life

Marsden, who was born in Buckingham, England, on May 7, 1951, began his career in his adolescence by joining a number of British rock bands.

Before joining Paice Ashton Lord, which included Deep Purple drummer Ian Paice and organist Jon Lord, he briefly worked with UFO and Cosy Powell’s Hammer in the early 1970s.

Malice in Wonderland, the band’s lone studio album released in 1977, features Marsden. The band Whitesnake was created the next year by Marsden and Coverdale, who had just finished a three-year run in Deep Purple.

He appeared on each of their first five studio albums, from 1980’s Live… in the Heart of the City through 1982’s Saints & Sinners, as well as the live album.

Most notably, “Here I Go Again,” a song by Saints & Sinners that was co-written by Marsden and Coverdale, went to number one on the charts when it was reissued in 1987. 

While Saints & Sinners was being recorded, Marsden departed Whitesnake because Coverdale was purging the band due to business, personnel, and personal issues.

Later, he rejoined with former Whitesnake guitarist Micky Moody in the Moody Marsden Band and the Snakes after splitting up with Alaska. Over the years, Marsden has contributed to numerous additional records in addition to releasing solo albums on a regular basis.

In the end, Marsden and Coverdale were once again close, and on his 2014 album Shine, a cover of Whitesnake’s “Trouble” included Coverdale.

Fellow musicians and Bandmates pay tribute to the Guitarist on social media

Netizens flooded social media with tributary messages. A few comments online read:

Whitesnake leader David Coverdale shared a tribute to his former bandmate and co-writer on social media.

“I’ve just woken up to the awful news that my old friend and former Snake Bernie Marsden has passed,” he wrote. “My sincere thoughts and prayers to his beloved family, friends, and fans. A genuinely funny, gifted man, whom I was honored to know and share a stage with.”

Laurence Jones a multi-award-winning guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter posted an emotional tribute.

So saddened to hear the news that my dear friend & mentor Bernie Marsden (Whitesnake) has passed. Bernie has always been good to me, guiding and inspiring me especially when starting out. Another legend is taken to the great gig in the sky. Your music and legacy will always live on. RIP my friend. 

Danny Bryant Musician/Band posted the following tribute,

Rest in peace to one of the greatest ever my dear friend Bernie Marsden. So many wonderful memories…from your recording on my album. To watching you in the Studio making the chess album. Playing backup guitar for you and you turn up at my gigs to jam. 

Gerry Jablonski Band posted,

We’ve just learned terrible news about Bernie Marsden passing. We’ve shared the stage a few years back at RORY GALLAGHER INTERNATIONAL TRIBUTE FESTIVAL. Bernie was always a true gentleman and a true master of his craft – one of a kind!


“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal. Saying goodbye to someone we love is heartbreaking. I write this obituary with a heavy heart to inform you of the demise of Legendary Guitarist Bernie Marsden. On Thursday night, Bernie passed away quietly with his wife Fran and children Charlotte and Olivia by his side.

A true master of his craft, a lover of music, a legend of the mountain, and above all, the most genuine and genial of men. Bernie never lost his passion for music, writing and recording new songs until the end. He was not only a great musician, but I’ve never read a single bad word about him – he managed to live a good life, too.

Marsden was an integral part of the early Whitesnake line-up before embarking on a solo career which showed his mastery of the blues. Our thoughts here at Medico Topics go out to the family and friends of Bernie Marsden. Rest in Peace.


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