The rock world lost a star this week. Rochester native Phil Naro succumbed to a battle with cancer on Sunday night. The rocker of international fame was best known as the vocalist for Talas, where he played alongside Billy Sheehan. On hearing of Naro’s passing, Sheehan shared the following on Twitter:
Manager Bruce Pilato also shared a post on Facebook:
“It is with great sadness that we must announce the passing of our son, father, friend and musician Phillip Sampognaro, known professionally as Phil Naro. Phil fought a valiant battle against cancer over the last few years but left this earth last night surrounded by his family and closest friends.”
Naro got his start in music in his hometown of Rochester, but joining Buffalo-based Talas skyrocketed his professional career. He went on to launch a successful solo career and performed with top ’80s hard rock bands including, Yngwie Malmsteen, Anthrax, White Lion, Quiet Riot, and Iron Maiden.
He partnered with other internationally-known artists to form supergroup The Platinum Rock All-Stars in 2016. After a reunion tour with Talas in 2019, he poured his energies into a solo album, A Life in Song, which is yet unreleased.
In addition to his extensive body of recorded works, his legacy lives on through his sons, John and James, who have inherited his passion for music.
With every song I sing, I want to touch people’s hearts— let them feel the passion I have for music.– Phil Naro