RIP: Tom Healey, 1956-2014
By Greg Haymes
As I wrote back in 2006 on the occasion of the release of their sophomore album, Tough Dog, “the Tom Healey Band once again proves they’re the Capital Region’s premiere blues band.”
Guitarist-vocalist-bandleader Tom Healey died on Monday (July 21) at the age of 58, and his passing leaves a major hole, not only in the Nippertown blues scene and the Local 518 music scene, but all throughout the Capital Region community. His band – formerly known as Good Friday – was an anchor all around town, frequently playing neighborhood clubs, the Hibernian Hall and a countless number of benefit shows. Healey played with the band just last weekend at the Albany Rail Yard.
At various times, his band featured such musicians as keyboardist Jason Ladanye, saxmen Brian Patneaude and Keith Pray, drummer Al Kash, bassist Adam Graham and many others over the years.
The Tom Healey Band’s debut album, Pearl Street, was hailed by regular Nippertown contributor Don Wilcock as “the best local blues album I’ve ever heard,” upon its release in 2001.
A longtime history teacher at Albany High School, Healey had only just retired from his day job a month ago.
Life can be very, very cruel…
UPDATE: Friends are invited to call at the Parker Brothers Memorial Funeral Home in Watervliet from 4-8pm on Friday (July 25). Services will be held at 10am on Saturday (July 26) at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Watervliet.