Shock waves are spreading through the GTA music community as news is shared of the unexpected passing of Jon Long overnight the evening of Thursday April 19 or early Friday April 20.
A close friend of Jon’s told me this afternoon that he had seen Jon twice for coffees earlier this week and that the former music store scion and veteran drummer, band leader, jam host and promoter had been feeling energetic and “wanted to get back to rehearsing” as soon as possible.
“I had coffee with him on Tuesday and again on Wednesday and we agreed to rehearse Thursday night,” songwriter and guitarist Bruce Palait said. “But when I called him Thursday he said he wasn’t feeling well and had a pain in his side, so we canceled that.”
Jon, who turned 60 on April 3 with an uncustomary lack of fanfare, seemed very healthy, although he had put on some weight over the past months after quitting gym workouts when his trainer left for another position, Palait said.
Apparently Jon’s siblings, the children of Long & McQuade Musical Instruments founder Jack Long, were also surprised by his passing, for which a cause has not yet been determined. An autopsy is being conducted that should shed more light on the situation.
Meanwhile the outpouring of grief, shock and love on social media that began with a posting there by a family member this afternoon has turned to a flood in just a few hours. We’ll include some of the tributes in a more extensive updated article and obit once more details about Jon’s passing and final arrangements are known.