Phil Naro, who sang for the Buffalo band Talas, has died at the age of 63 from cancer. The news was confirmed by his family and former bandmates on social media.
"Phil Naro. One of the finest human beings I have ever known. I’m deeply saddened to report his passing," tweeted bassist Billy Sheehan, who played in Talas with Naro. "He fought a valiant battle till the end, and inspired all who knew him to stay positive and keep going against all odds. God bless you, Phil. Rest in peace dear friend."
Manager Bruce Pilato also shared a post on Facebook, which featured a statement from the vocalist's family.
"It is with great sadness that we must announce the passing of our son, father, friend and musician Phillip Sampognaro, known professionally as Phil Naro. Phil fought a valiant battle against cancer over the last few years but left this earth last night surrounded by his family and closest friends," the statement reads.
"Phil was one of those rare individuals known as a 'singer’s singer.' A staple of both the Canadian and U.S. music scene, Phil had become a mainstay in venues ranging from clubs to large performing arts centers and massive arenas. He had just completed the debut album from the band Lips Turn Blue (formerly D Drive) which had secured a worldwide record deal, and a reunion album with Billy Sheehan and Talas, of which he was a member in the 1980s."The post went on to detail Naro's many other musical endeavors, particularly his solo career, where he worked with musicians from bands such as Whitesnake, Vanilla Fudge, Yes, Asia and more.
See the tributes below.
Sheehan confirmed a new Talas album that he had been working on with Naro during an episode of the Music Matters podcast in November of 2020. It's set to be released through Metal Blade.
Phil Naro. One of the finest human beings I have ever known. I’m deeply saddened to report his passing. He fought a valiant battle till the end, and inspired all who knew him to stay positive and keep going against all odds.
God bless you, Phil. Rest in peace dear friend. — Billy Sheehan (@BillyonBass) May 3, 2021