Dave Grohl leads tributes to singer Trini Lopez, who has died from COVID-19

Grohl has used Lopez' line of Gibson guitars on every Foo Fighters record.

Dave Grohl has led tributes to singer and actor Trini Lopez, who has died from complications linked to COVID-19.

The American star, born Trinidad López III, was best known for his role as Pedro Jiminez in 1967’s The Dirty Dozen and for singing a popular cover version of the hit ‘If I Had A Hammer’.

His death was first confirmed in Palm Springs Life Magazine, with Lopez being a longtime resident of the Southern California area and ultimately passing away there.

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Sharing on Instagram, Grohl praised Lopez’ Gibson guitar line, which he has used on every Foo Fighters album.

“Today the world sadly lost yet another legend, Trini Lopez. 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,” wrote Grohl.

“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, Texas, in 1937 and grew up in the Little Mexico neighbourhood. He was forced to drop out of high school in his senior year because he needed to earn money to support his family.

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After forming his own band at the age of 15, he landed a Columbia Records contract with his band The Big Beats – who were recommended to producer Norman Petty by Buddy Holly.

His film career, meanwhile, began with 1965’s Marriage on the Rocks. He later took a starring role in 1967’s The Dirty Dozen.

Paying tribute, his friend Alison Martino wrote: “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. We had just finished a documentary on his life. Farewell my guitar hero.”

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