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Hilton Valentine (1943–2021), The Animals guitarist

by Kirk Fox

Hilton Valentine was the founding guitarist for the popular 1960s British Invasion rock band The Animals.

  • Died: Friday, January 29, 2021 (Who else died on January 29?)
  • Details of death: Died at the age of 77 in Wallingford, Connecticut.
  • We invite you to share condolences for Hilton Valentine in our Guest Book.

The Animals

Hilton Valentine was the founding guitarist for the popular British Invasion rock band The Animals, whose hits included “House of the Rising Sun.” Led by lead singer Eric Burdon, Valentine was the band’s only guitarist, playing rhythm and lead on classic rock staples “It’s My Life” and “We Gotta Get Out of This Place.” Valentine may be best known for his arpeggio guitar riff on “House of the Rising Sun,” which inspired many to take up guitar. Valentine left the band in 1966 but would often play The Animals reunion shows. The original line-up of The Animals was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.

Tributes to Hilton Valentine

Full Obituary: Washington Post

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