Luke Bryan, Ronnie Dunn + More Remember Iconic Studio Guitarist J.T. Corenflos
J.T. Corenflos was something of a riff master in country music, and the many artists whose albums he touched took to social media upon hearing of his death to make sure their fans knew that a studio legend had played his final note.
Luke Bryan shared a compilation of songs Corenflos played on, singling out the signature riffs of hits like "Country Girl," "All My Friends Say," "Country Man" and "Huntin', Fishin' and Lovin' Everyday." That's just a sample of the 56-year-old's dynamic catalog.
Corenflos died on Saturday night (Oct. 24) in Nashville after battling lung disease for several years. His hometown paper, the Terre Haute Tribute-Star, was among the outlets reporting the news in detail, which his girlfriend, Annabeth Robinson, confirmed.
Ronnie Dunn recalls that Corenflos added to famous Brooks & Dunn songs like "Play Something Country" (he played the opening riff), and Ned LeDoux remembers how he and his late father Chris LeDoux both were fortunate enough to work with one-time ACM Guitarist of the Year.
"He was a humble, patient and kind man," Dunn writes. "He will be missed."
Chris Janson says Corenflos bought him a pair of boots when he couldn't afford a pair many years ago, tributing his friend on Twitter. It was Bryan who gave the most personal and lengthly tribute, however, making clear his career might not be where it is today if not for some of these famous riffs.
"He was a soft-spoken genius that let his fingers do all the talking," Bryan writes. "He has played on countless records of mine and many times turned a good song into something unique and special."
Corenflos kept playing and kept recording until just weeks before his death. The Tribune-Star article reveals that he cut some guitar parts on Sept. 30, wanting to play until the very end. One can find his work on 75 No. 1 singles and across the catalogs of country artists like Bryan, Tim McGraw, George Strait and more, plus rockers like Bob Seger and Sheryl Crow.
Bryan alludes to some longterm health issues in his tweet — something Robinson confirmed to the newspaper. Corenflos was hospitalized with pneumonia last month, but went home, only to return a few weeks later. He’s also survived by a son named Jacob, two siblings and extended family.