Jason Slater, one of the original members of multiplatinum-selling rock band Third Eye Blind, has died of liver failure at the age of 49.
Slater, who played bass for the band on its first demo in 1993 and exited the group the following year, passed on Wednesday, December 9, in a Maui, Hi., hospital, his daughter reported to TMZ. She told the outlet that her dad had kept his condition secret and that she herself only found out he was sick a month ago when she received a call about him being in the hospital.
Although Third Eye Blind would have virtually all of its success following Slater's brief original tenure, a representative for the band gave condolences, stating, "When a spirited member of the music scene is taken too soon it is always a sad time."
Third Eye Blind's frontman and songwriter Stephan Jenkins had not made any comment on Slater's passing yet.
Back in 2008, what appears to be a YouTube account manned by Slater posted a video of some of 3EB's earliest days, writing, "All we did was beat up our girlfriends, play grab ass and cover Zep songs at Skywalker Ranch ..... at $2K a day hahaha," adding some slightly acerbic observations in the comments suggesting there were power struggles between him and Jenkins.
Slater himself didn't abandon the music world following his stint with 3EB. He continued working with several other bands, including Snake River Conspiracy, Microdot, Revenge of the Triads and the rap-rock project Brougham. He is also listed as a producer on four albums by Grammy-nominated heavy metal band Queensrÿche.
Rock guitarist Craig Locicero, who played on one of those albums, posted his sadness at the loss of his friend on Facebook: "Jason was a successful producer, engineer, record label mogul, songwriter, musician, manager and partying animal all the while. Dude lived the life of 100 men. Much of it on the edge. However, Jason's greatest strength and trait was his heart. He was full of love. Loved his family. Loved his daughter. Loved his friends. Loved us all like crazy."