Trini Lopez death: Foo Fighters and others pay tribute to actor and singer who died from coronavirus aged 83

Louis Chilton
·2 min read
Trini Lopez in the studio in 2013 as part of a collaboration with Andre Rieu: AFP via Getty Images
Trini Lopez in the studio in 2013 as part of a collaboration with Andre Rieu: AFP via Getty Images

Tributes are being paid to the late Trini Lopez, the singer and actor who died at the age of 83.

Best known for his role in The Dirty Dozen and his cover of “If I Had a Hammer”, Lopez died in Palm Springs, California, of complications stemming from coronavirus.

The Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl is among those to have expressed admiration for Lopez, describing his Lopez signature guitar as his “most prized possession”.

“Today the world sadly lost yet another legend, wrote the band on Twitter. “Trini not only left a beautiful musical legacy of his own, but also unknowingly helped shape the sound of the Foo Fighters from day one.”

“Every album we have ever made, from the first to the latest, was recorded with my red 1967 Trini Lopez signature guitar. It is the sound of our band, and my most prized possession from the day I bought it in 1992. Thank you, Trini for all of your contributions. You will be missed by many, remembered by all.”

Lopez was born in Dallas in 1937, establishing his first band while he was only 15. After moving to West Hollywood and playing in a nightclub, Lopez was spotted by Frank Sinatra, who signed him to his label and fostered his acting career.

His cover of Pete Seeger’s “If I Had a Hammer”, released on his debut live album, sold more than one million copies, peaking at No 3 on the US charts and at No 4 in the UK.

In the 1966 war movie The Dirty Dozen, Lopez played Pedro Jiminez, whose character was killed off-screen following a dispute with director Robert Aldrich.

Crooner Pat Boone wrote on Facebook that Lopez was a “wonderful friend” and a “great guy”, adding that he was “blessed to make a good living doing what [he] loved – making others happy”.

Friend and TV producer Alison Martino, who recently finished work on a documentary about Lopez’s life, wrote on Twitter: “My heart is broken. We lost TRINI LOPEZ today from COVID-19. I will always cherish our unique and special friendship. We are completely gutted... Farewell my guitar hero.”

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