CLEVELAND (WJW) – Devastating news for music fans in Cleveland. Michael Stanley, 72, has died. He was diagnosed with lung cancer last fall and is fighting to the end.
Michael Stanley Guy was born in 1948, the same year that the Indians won the World Series. He loved baseball, playing all his childhood in Cleveland and Rocky River. His ability earned him a baseball scholarship to Hiram College.
Michael also loved music. He learned to play the guitar after watching artists such as Elvis and the Beatles on television. He played in several bands while a student at Rocky River High School, including The Scepters and Tree Stumps. During college he played with the band Sylk.
Between his love of baseball and his love of music, music won out and he began to focus on songwriting. In 1
Between recordings, Michael works for a record store in Cleveland. One day he was asked to participate in a competing store and he was released. Michael had to make a decision.
“I was fired from my job, I just bought a new car, I had two babies and I didn’t have a job between us and I was like … What am I going to do now?”
From the need to pay only the bills, the Michael Stanley Band was formed. They began to receive regional acclaim and were asked to open bands such as Reo Speedwagon, Cheap Trick, Foreigner and Joe Walsh, who played with Michael on their second album.
MSB continued to record albums such as “Ladies’ Choice” and “Cabin Fever”. They gained more fans, as evidenced by several sold-out shows at Agora in Cleveland. Michael remembered what it was like at the time, “Agora held about 800 to 900 people, and for one show we presented 2,500.”
Michael Stanley Band made it big with the release of “Heartland”, moving from an initial act to a headliner. The album remained in the top 100 for more than eight weeks. He spawned two huge hits: “Lover” with the iconic saxophone of the late Clarence Clemens of the band on E. Street and “He Can’t Love You”, which was one of the first MTV videos. He shot the single to number 33 on the Billboard Top 100.
Albums in the early 80’s “North Coast” and “MSB” brought the band back to Blossom Music Center, where they broke records for attendance after show. The success even landed the American Bandstand’s MSB. It was a huge dream come true for Michael.
“Being on the show and making Dick Clark react to us as excited as it would be to see Led Zepplin was great,” Michael said.
MSB disbanded in the mid-1980s and gave Michael a chance to start the second half of his career. Michael has hosted PM magazine on FOX 8 for several years. He also followed in the footsteps of his father, Stan Gee, a longtime radio DJ and announcer. Michael spent 30 years broadcasting 98.5 WNCX. He has won 11 Emmys and is a member of the Cleveland Television Operators Hall of Fame.
Despite his success, he tackled several challenges that could end his career: a near-fatal heart attack in the early 1990s, the loss of his mother from pancreatic cancer, and the loss of his third wife, Denise, from white cancer. fraction. Michael himself is battling prostate cancer, but his music has allowed him to gain perspective and provide a way out. In an interview in 2014, Michael talked about the struggles.
“You have to choose how you deal with it. Will you curl up and sit like a sick dog until it’s over? Or live your life? And I hope that’s the choice I made. ”
In 2019, Michael received the Cleveland Art Award Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Cleveland City Council renamed Huron Road “Way Michael Stanley.”
In the fall of 2020, Michael is battling lung cancer. Eventually, the disease took his life. During his 50 years of music and 70 years or more on earth, Michael Stanley is synonymous with Cleveland. His memory continues to live with children, grandchildren and music worth 40 albums.
Michael’s family thanks the fans for always being there for their love and support. Michael will rest in a private service at Lake View Cemetery. His family wants to make contributions on behalf of Michael to the Great Cleveland Food Bank and the Cleveland Animal Welfare League.
Stanley’s family released a statement to radio station 98.5 on Saturday morning:
Cleveland singer and songwriter Michael Stanley Guy died peacefully at home with his family on March 5. He was 72 years old. Michael has been battling lung cancer for seven months with the same strength and dignity he has carried throughout his life. He will always be remembered as a loving father, brother, husband, loyal friend and leader of one of the most successful rock bands in Cleveland.
Michael will be laid to rest in Lake View Cemetery. The service will be private. Instead of flowers, his memory can be made at the Cleveland Foodbank (www.greaterclevelandfoodbank.org) and / or at the Cleveland Animal Welfare League (www.clevelandapl.org). Michael’s family would like to thank the Western Reserve Hospice for their dedicated care, friends and extended family for being there, and his fans for their love and support over the past forty years. As he always said, “This is your world, pay attention.”
The Stanley family
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