The family of late blues guitarist Jeff Healey have lashed out at a label it claims released a double-CD of early singles and unreleased live material that they did not authorize.
The album, titled “The Jeff Healey Band – Legacy: Volume One,” was sent to music press this week on Winnipeg, Manitoba-based Arbor Records. The album is being distributed by EMI Music Canada and will hit retailers on Nov. 4. The two-disc set includes hits and unreleased material, including performances with Tom Cochrane, and a new mix of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” which the album says features George Harrison, Paul Shaffer and Jeff Lynne.
Healey died March 2 after a lengthy battle with cancer. The guitarist, blind since childhood, was renowned as a virtuoso who could tackle any form of music from hard rock to jazz.
The family contends the album originated with former Jeff Healey Band drummer Tom Stephen. The family says Stephen had been battling with Healey over alleged unpaid royalties. Cristie Healey, wife of the guitarist, said she was “deeply and sadly disappointed” that the album was being released and that EMI would distribute it.
“We ask that Jeff’s fans please refrain from purchasing this compilation out of respect for Jeff and his family,” she said in a statement. “This release is not authorized or supported in any way by Jeff’s estate.”
Bradon Friesen, president of Arbor Records, did not respond immediately to queries about the matter from Billboard.