Skip Parsons Died at 86:- He was a most popular musician and he died on 21st April 2022.
Who Is Skip Parsons?
Skip, a constant figure in the local music scene and whose Delmar storefront helped provide musical instruments to dozens of high school students, died Thursday evening April 21 from a stroke that he had suffered a few days before. He was 86 years old.
According to his family, Parsons had suffered a stroke on Monday. He was then admitted to hospice care before dying on Thursday evening.
“Dad is at peace now and they’re all having a hell of a jam session in the sky,” the family shared in a statement online that evening.
For nearly 50 years, his Riverboat Jazz Band of Skip Parsons filled the hall every second weekend of the month at The Fountain on New Scotland Avenue. It was a tradition that lasted from 1971, when the venue’s original owner gave the band their original two-night residency, until shortly after the restaurant changed hands in 2019.
More About Skip Parsons
“Skip was a very humble guy who had a lot to brag about,” said musician and Blue Sky Studio owner Scott Apicelli. “I had the pleasure of knowing Skip for over 4 decades and respected him immensely as a person and as a player.”
For 20 years Parsons owned a music store next to the Saragota Shoe Depot at the corner of Groesbeck Place and Delaware Avenue. From there, he helped repair and match instruments with local high school students. The store closed in 1998.
“I always thought I’d hear him play one more time,” said Michael Benedict, whose first job was working at Parsons’ music store. He said there was nothing better than the time spent “between the students”, where Parsons made him laugh like no other.
Years later, Benedict would step in to perform in the jazz band. Parsons, as a bandleader, “was very particular,” he said. “He was a bit like Buddy Rich in that he expected perfection from his band and never gave less than 100% in his own performances.”
Parsons and his band are forever linked to the 1980 Winter Olympics and the celebration that followed the United States Hockey Team’s 4-3 victory over the heavily favored Soviet Union. ABC’s Al Michaels helped dub the game “The Miracle on Ice”. For Parsons, he has never played in front of a more cheering crowd.
“Then all of a sudden the doors opened and [fans] come shout. And I thought, well, they must have won,” Parsons said. Projectors Rob Jonas in 2016. “Anyway, they came and they tried to take Ernie (Bélanger) with his sousaphone…and it was all on the front page of the New York Post the next day.”
Parsons is survived by an extended family which includes his wife Linda; daughters, Stacey Plante and Jill Wilson; and his grandsons Alex and Josh Plante.
A funeral mass will be celebrated at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, 35 Adams Place, Delmar on Thursday, April 28 at 10 a.m. Relatives and friends are invited to visit Skip’s family on Wednesday, April 27 from 4 to 7 p.m., at Applebee’s Funeral Home, 403 Kenwood Avenue in Delmar.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Skip’s memory may be made to the American Diabetes Association, 50 Colvin Ave. Albany, NY 12206 or at the American Heart Association, 4 Atrium Dr. Albany, NY 12205.