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Leslie West Recuperating Following Leg Amputation

Guitarist Leslie West, 65, is recovering from leg-amputation surgery in Biloxi, Mississippi.

West, who is best known as the guitarist for Mountain, had flown in to Mississippi to perform at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino with Mountain. On Saturday, his leg began to swell, and West, a diabetic, was rushed to the emergency room. It was decided that an amputation was required in order to save his life.

The surgery was considered a success, and the procedure removed his limb up to the knee.

West, who faces extensive rehabilitation, is expected to fully recover. His family has requested that the public and media respect his privacy while he comes to terms with this life-changing transition.

West continues to remain current, as witnessed by the assemblage of legends joining him on his next album, which includes Billy Gibbons, Slash, Zakk Wylde, Joe Bonamassa and Steve Lukather, alongside Kenny Aronoff.

“These guys don’t show up to play on everybody’s albums," West said recently. "They’re stars in their own right and fantastic players, everyone with their own sound and style, and about as far from ‘the usual suspects’ as it gets.”

The release date for the new album, titled The Unusual Suspects, will be announced soon.

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Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor, and his non-Pulitzer-Prize-winning stories have appeared in Guitar Aficionado, Vintage Guitar, Total Guitar and countless other publications, including 13.7 metric tons of daily newspapers. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton and Ty Tabor chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas (opens in new tab), was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron (opens in new tab), a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums (opens in new tab) (one of which appears in the 2015 Disney film 'Tomorrowland' starring George Clooney and Britt Robertson). He's in two NYC-area bands and plays Teles with four-way switches, B-benders and semi-snazzy aftermarket pickups. He quotes Terry-Thomas twice daily.