"He died peacefully at home in his bed, surrounded by love," the statement read. "His wife Maureen was by his side holding his hand. For his fans that have loved and supported him all these years, take comfort in knowing that his words are all around us, and in that way he is never truly gone."
"Uncle John's Band," "China Cat Sunflower," "Scarlet Begonias," "Box of Rain" and "Dark Star" are among the songs for which Hunter provided lyrics.
Grateful Dead founder Jerry Garcia invited Hunter to play with his jug band in 1961, but Hunter preferred to write, according to Rolling Stone's tribute bio. He took part in LSD studies at Stanford and sent Garcia lyrics from the Southwest before moving to San Francisco, where Hunter became the official Grateful Dead lyricist.
In an interview published as an Amazon Kindle ebook in 2015, Hunter said he usually wrote the lyrics first. In unusual cases like "Foolish Heart" and "Uncle John's Band," he wrote lyrics after he heard the melody.
Hunter also wrote songs with Bob Dylan from 1980 to 2009. He reunited with Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart to write new music and collaborated with Elvis Costello, Bruce Hornsby, and Jim Lauderdale.