Guitarist Jason Becker Hospitalized With ‘Shortness of Breath’
Guitarist Jason Becker, who has been living with ALS for more than 30 years, has been hospitalized after experiencing shortness of breath and a rapid heart rate, according to his family.
"Hey, everyone, Jason is aware of and overwhelmed by the outpouring of prayers and love coming his way," his mother, Pat Becker, tweeted on her son's account. "He was feeling better for a while, but the annoying shortness of breath and rapid heart rate kept coming and going. The doctor felt it was best to admit him to the hospital, which is what we are doing."
Though he has lost the ability to play guitar, walk, talk and breathe on his own due to his ALS, Becker is able to communicate with friends and family with his eyes via a system developed by his father.
"On his way, he said, 'Gonna get this fixed. I love you,' " Pat Becker added. "Eternal optimist, and we are all taking his lead."
Becker began his career at 16, when he joined forces with Marty Friedman in 1986 to form the metal band Cacophony. After their split, he went on release various solo albums; in 1991, he replaced Steve Vai as the guitar player in David Lee Roth's band. It was around this time his ALS symptoms began to present, forcing him to stop playing guitar.
Even though he was given only a few years to live, Becker has continued to craft and compose music with the help of a computer and his team. His most recent album, Triumphant Hearts, was released in December 2018 and featured guest appearances by Vai, Joe Satriani, Neal Schon, Joe Bonamassa and others.