Rock musician and two-time “America’s Got Talent” contestant Jay Jay Phillips has passed away, according to his bandmates.
A member of Phillips’ family confirmed the news to TMZ, telling the outlet that Phillips died of complications related to COVID-19 after declining his family’s request to seek treatment at a hospital. Phillips’ girlfriend and her mother reportedly found him dead on Thanksgiving Day. He was 30.
TMZ’s family source claimed that Phillips was not vaccinated against COVID-19 and that his father, whom he shared a residence with, has been hospitalized and placed on a ventilator.
Phillips, whose wild hair and keyboard riffs made him one of the more memorable “AGT” acts, had appeared on both the show’s 2009 and 2017 seasons, making it as far as the “Judge Cuts” round in his second appearance. (A fansite dedicated to “AGT” suggests he may have also auditioned in 2014, though it was not shown on TV).
His current band, Mettal Maffia, announced news of Phillips’ passing on Nov. 30.
“It is with great sadness we inform you all of the loss of our bandmate/brother/and friend @jayjayrocks,” the band wrote in a statement posted to social media. “It still doesn’t feel real and we would give anything to change it. Please respect the family, as well as our wishes as we take our time to grieve and process this detrimental loss.
“We miss you brother, every second of every minute, of every day. Thank you for teaching us all to laugh a little more. Rock in Paradise.”