Atlanta Rhythm Section’s Goddard Dies

Paul Goddard, who enjoyed playing in the Atlanta Rhythm Section long after the band’s 1970s/80s peak, has died after a brief and sudden illness.  He was 68.

A founding member of Atlanta Rhythm Section, Goddard retired from touring in the mid ’80s but returned in 2011. A statement from the band noted that Goddard “still loved to play on the road, actually more now than when the band was at its peak.”

That’s Goddard’s bass that you hear whenever your local classic rock radio station spins ARS classics such as “Imaginary Lover” and “So Into You,” as well as the band’s cover of the Classics IV’s “Spooky.”  Goodard’s bass solo on “Another Man’s Woman” that appeared on the 1978 ARS live album Are You Ready, was included on Rolling Stone’s list of the top five bass solos of all time.

(back row, l-r) Jim Keeling, David Anderson, Paul Goddard, Steve Stone.  (front row)  Rodney Justo, Dean Daughtry.

“I knew Paul when he was a guitarist, and maybe that’s why his bass playing was so musical,” singer Rodney Justo said.  “And to go with that musicality was a unique sound that made him so identifiable to fans and other musicians as well.  Yes, at one time he was ‘that big fat guy that played bass,’ but once he started playing, he wasn’t fat.  He was a giant.”