Bernie Marsden, Former Whitesnake Guitarist, Dies at 72
Bernie Marsden, former guitarist for Whitesnake, has died. He was 72.
Marsden’s death was confirmed in a social media statement from Whitesnake singer David Coverdale. He wrote, “I’ve just woken up to the awful news that my old friend & former Snake Bernie Marsden has passed. My sincere thoughts & prayers to his beloved family, friends & fans. A genuinely funny, gifted man, whom I was honored to know & share a stage with. RIP, Bernie.”
Good Morning…I’ve just woken up to the awful news that my old friend & former Snake Bernie Marsden has passed. My sincere thoughts & prayers to his beloved family, friends & fans. A genuinely funny, gifted man, whom I was honored to know & share a stage with— David Coverdale (@davidcoverdale) August 25, 2023
RIP, Bernie XXX pic.twitter.com/KXwsDEICN6
Marsden’s tenure in Whitesnake lasted from 1978-1982. He played on the band’s debut EP, their first five studio albums and one live album. During his time in the band, Marsden and Coverdale wrote Whitesnake’s biggest hit, “Here I Go Again,” which was originally released on their 1982 album Saints & Sinners. However, the track took off when it was re-recorded for the band’s self-titled 1987 album.
By the time “Here I Go Again” became a megahit, Marsden had been out of Whitesnake for years. Marsden told us in 2020 of the track's delayed success long after departing the band, “I just found it ironic that at Whitesnake’s peak in America, the record company had chosen a song from the last lineup of the band to rework, and I thought they did a really good job of it. I think [producer] Mike Stone did a great job in the studio. I think the band were really good at the time, and I think Dan Huff put a great guitar solo on it.”
Marsden noted of the song’s classic video, “I got more calls about, ‘Have you seen ‘Here I Go Again?” long before I’d heard it. And I remember I was doing a gig in Liverpool, I think it was. There was one of these TV screens up on the bar. And one of the guys in the bar said, ‘Your song’s on the TV.’ That was the first time I saw and heard it, at the same time. I was pretty impressed with it, to be honest with you. It was great.”