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Jefferson Airplane drummer Joey Covington dies after crashing car in Palm Springs

Published On: Jun 05 2013 12:43:01 AM CDT   Updated On: Jun 05 2013 09:51:00 AM CDT
Palm Springs Fatal

A car crashed into a wall on Belardo Road in Palm Springs Tuesday afternoon, killing the only occupant.


Early Wednesday morning we learned that drummer Joey Covington was the man who died Tuesday afternoon in Palm Springs when his sedan slammed head on into a wall near a curve at Belardo Road near South Palm Canyon Drive.

The identification comes from the Riverside County Coroner's Office.

Joseph "Joey" Edward Covington was a US drummer best known for his involvements with Hot Tuna and Jefferson Airplane. He was 67.

The crash, which occurred around 5:00 p.m., shut down roads in the vicinity for several hours while Palm Springs police investigated.

"We were at the pool, just relaxing and we heard a big crash," said Stephen Wallace of Vancouver, Canada, who is staying at the nearby Best Western hotel. "Saw the dust flying, came running out and found this fellow lying in his car."

Wallace said he had received training in CPR many years before, and made an attempt to save Covington.

"He looked deceased to me. I tried to do CPR, but to no avail," said Wallace. "Heard no screech marks, no braking. It was quite surprising."

Covington was declared dead at the scene. Belardo reopened to traffic later in the evening. Police declined to provide details on any possible causes of the crash, citing the pending investigation. The driver was the only person inside the car when it hit the wall.

He was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

A self-taught drummer since the age of 10, he helped found Blues-rock group Hot Tuna in 1969. He wrote and sang the last hit for Jefferson Airplane 1971's "Pretty As You Feel" featured on the Bark Album. In 1976 Covington co-wrote the hit single "With Your Love" by Jefferson Starship.