Bob Welch, Ex-Fleetwood Mac Guitarist, Dead in Apparent Suicide

Fleetwood Mac Guitarist Dies

L-R are Mick Fleetwood, Christine McVie, Bob Welch, Bob Weston and John McVie. (Michael Putland/Getty Images)

Former Fleetwood Mac guitarist Bob Welch was found dead in his home in Nashville, Tenn., on Thursday, a police official told ABC News Radio. He was 66.

Welch was discovered dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound Thursday afternoon, the police official said.

Welch had recently been dealing with health issues, the source added. A suicide note was left at the scene.

Welch played with Fleetwood Mac from 1971 to 1974, before Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham joined the group and its members became worldwide superstars. He was brought in to replace departing guitarists Jeremy Spencer, who left to join a cult, and Peter Green, who had drug and mental health problems.

The group's first album with Welch was 1971's "Future Games"; Welch wrote the title track. He also appeared on other Fleetwood Mac albums including "Bare Trees," "Penguin, Mystery to Me" and "Heroes Are Hard to Find." He resigned in 1974; Buckingham and Nicks replaced him.

Welch went on to have a solo career in the late '70s, scoring hits with "Sentimental Lady" and "Ebony Eyes." He also formed another, short-lived group called Paris.

Oddly, Welch was not inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Fleetwood Mac when the band received that honor in 1998.

He said in 2003 that he felt that legal issues, plus the fact that he was estranged from Mick Fleetwood at the time, led to the snub.

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