Studio drummer Ricky Lawson, a collaborator with Michael Jackson, Eric Clapton, Phil Collins and Whitney Houston, has died at a suburban Los Angeles hospital following a brain aneurism. He was 59.
Lawson's uncle, Paul Riser of Detroit, said Tuesday that Lawson was removed from life support 10 days after the aneurism diagnosis and died around 7 p.m. Monday. Lawson was being treated at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center in Long Beach, Calif.
The Detroit native learned to play drums at age 16 and jumped into the music business before graduating from Cooley High School, developing into one of the nation's top studio musicians in the 1980s.
His work appears on Houston's version of “I Will Always Love You.” He also performed with Al Jarreau, George Benson, Bette Midler, Quincy Jones and many others.
Lawson won a Grammy Award in 1986 for R&B instrumental performance for the song “And You Know That” by his group, Yellowjackets.
He became disoriented during a performance on Dec. 13 and was diagnosed with an aneurism.