Chris Whitley Dies

Singer/songwriter Chris Whitley died November 20th after a short bout with lung cancer, according to his daughter.

“My father took his last breath last night the 20th of November,” Trixie Whitley said. “I would like to make it clear that the people he needed and loved the most were with him while and when he left in peace.”

Whitley, 45, recently canceled all of his performances for 2005. His brother then announced on that the performer was in home hospice care because the cancer was in its late stages.

The Texas-based country bluesman was known as a critic’s darling without commercial success. He began his career busking in New York City where a travel agent persuaded him he would be a hit in Belgium. The expert steel guitar player spent much of the ’80s there and released his first album in the U.S. on Columbia Records in 1991.

Whitley’s new CD, Soft Dangerous Shores, was released to good revues this summer.