Phil Brodie Band Info
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BIRTHDAYS & PASSINGS
. February . March
. April . May
. June . July
. September . October
. November . December
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Otto Bredl (56) German
between 1948 and the mid '80s, Otto appeared on at least 100 recordings, including
a series of collaborations between European big bands and visiting American jazz
stars such as his frequent associate Jiggs Whigham, or the flashy Stan Kenton.
From 1949 he was also steadily employed in the well-financed broadcasting studios
by radio bandleaders Kurt Edelhagen and Eddie Sauter. By 1961, he had become associated
with the Clarke-Boland Big Band, a collaborative effort between French pianist
Francy Boland and the American bebop drummer Kenny Clarke
(?) b. November
2011: Ronald "Ron" Skinner (64)
English bass guitarist and blues singer, born in Paddington, London and
he started out playing youth clubs along with his friend Mel Wright in a band
called The Tridents. During the 60s, they played together in the blues bands Shakey
Vick, Dynaflow Blues and the Nighthawks, during which time Ron also became a respected
blues singer. At
the 100 Club in London, their bands accompanied and supported visiting American
blues players including Howlin' Wolf, Curtis Jones, Lightnin' Slim, Son House
and Juke Boy Bonner. At a recording session for BBC television's Late Night Line-Up,
with Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup. In his mid 20s, Ron studied economics
at Kingston University, achieving a first-class honours degree, and then gained
an academic position at Westminster Business School, where he became senior lecturer
in economics. Ron also became international exchanges co-ordinator at the school,
and he travelled to Japan, Australia and the US to establish relations with other
died of cancer)
b. January 17th 1947.
Sourse Mel Wright
Wilhelm Friedemann Bach (73) German
composer and performer, and eldest
son of Johann Sebastian Bach. Wilhelm was appointed in 1733 to the position of
organist of the St. Sophia's Church at Dresden. In competing for the post he played
a new version of his fathers Prelude and Fugue in G Major, BWV 541. The
judge described him as clearly superior to the other two candidates. He remained
a renowned organist throughout his life. He composed many Sacred Cantatas, Song,
Keyboard works, Orchestral Works, Chamber Music, Liturgical Works, Secular Cantata
& Opera, but despite his genius as an organist, improviser and composer, his
income and employment were unstable and he died in poverty
November 22nd 1710.
1950: Émile Jaques-Dalcroze (84) Swiss
composer, musician and music educator who developed eurhythmics, a method of learning
and experiencing music through movement. The influence of eurhythmics can be seen
in the Orff Schulwerk pedagogy, common in public school music education throughout
the United States. Between 1903 and 1910, he had begun giving public presentations
of his method. In 1910, with the help of German industrialist Wolf Dohrn, Emile
founded a school at Hellerau, outside of Dresden, dedicated to the teaching of
his method. Among his compositions are a Nocturne for violin and orchestra, Violin
Concerto No.1 in c and Poème 2nd Concerto for violin and orchestra (?)
Rushton Moreve/John Russell Morgan (33)
bass guitarist best known for his work with the rock band Steppenwolf from 196768
and again in 1978. His
early influence was essential in creating the unique musical style for which Steppenwolf
became famous. He joined the band in 1967 and performed on their debut album,
Steppenwolf, which was composed of covers and songs written by John
Rushton co-wrote one of thier hits "Magic Carpet Ride"
His influence was heavier on the follow-up, The Second, his final album with Steppenwolf.
He split with the band in late 1968 when he refused to fly back to California,
fearing it would sink into the Pacific Ocean (tragically
killed in a motorcycle accident)
November 6th 1948.
Snakefinger/Philip Lithman (38) UK
and multi-musician; born in South London, he grew up and worked in and among the
British Blues scene, but moved to San Francisco in 1971, where he joined up with
the avant-garde group The Residents, who it is said gave him his nickname 'Snakefinger'
either because of his proficient guitar work or his shred work on the violin..
or maybe both. He returned to England in 1972 and formed the rock band Chilli
Willi & The Red Hot Peppers with Martin Stone, as a duo, they released the
album "Kings of Robot Rhythm". In 1974, as a full band they released
"Bongos Over Balham". The band broke up in '75 and by 1976 Lithman was
back in the United States, this time in Los Angeles, California, but by '78 he
was back in San Francisco touring and recording again with The Residents, his
is featured on 12 of their albums between 1971 and 1986. In 1978 Phil started
to record is own material under the name of Snakefinger, debuting with the single
"The Spot", followed in 1979 with the album "Chewing Hides the
Sound". Ten albums in all have been released inder his Snakefinger name.
Phil suffered a heart attack while touring in Australia, but by 1982 he was on
the road again with his nearly formed backing band The Vestal Virgins. Phil performed
with The Residents on their 13th Anniversary Tour in 1986 and 1987 saw Snakefinger
and his band, The Vestal Virgins, touring Europe, tragically, his final tour.
(During a performance at the Posthof Club Lithman, Austria,
he suffered a fatal heart attack. On that same day his single, "There's No
Justice in Life", was released)
June 17th 1949.
1985: Dick Vance
grew up in Cleveland in the 1920s and 30s, seldom soloed and was not widely
known by the general public, but he was a highly respected lead trumpeter and
arranger. He played in Cleveland with J. Frank Terry before joining Lil Armstrong's
band in 1934-35. He moved to New York City and played with Willie Bryant, Kaiser
Marshall, and Fletcher Henderson in 1936-38; in Henderson's band he was lead trumpeter
and occasionally sang. In 1939 he joined Chick Webb's orchestra, and remained
in the group when Ella Fitzgerald took over leadership. Following this he worked
with Charlie Barnet, Don Redman, Eddie Heywood, and Ben Webster. From 1944 to
1947 he studied at Juilliard, and moonlighted as a pit orchestra musician and
an arranger. He arranged for Duke Ellington, Harry James, Cab Calloway, and Earl
1950 Dick played once more with Fletcher Henderson in a sextet, then joined Duke
Ellington's group in 1951-52. He toured with Redman in 1953 and was a regular
at the Savoy Ballroom throughout the 1950s. In the 1960s, he toured Europe with
Eddie Barefield, released two albums under his own name, and played with the Cab
Calloway band. By the 1980s, he stayed close to New York, as one of the honored
veterans of the swing era, he took part in a Vintage Jazz Band Bash organized
by Oberlin College graduate Dick Sudhalter in New York in
June of 1984 (?)
b. November 28th 1915.
Duke Ellingtons book "Music is My Mistress"...
Lyndon Johnson hired the Duke to play at the White House for a party honoring
the visiting King of Thailand. Ellington asked Vance to write some arrangements
and invited him to attend the party. When The Duke introduced Vance to the king,
the king said, "Dick Vance? I know who Dick Vance is. He used to wail with
Chick Webb." Ellington thought to himself, "This is a real hip king!"
1995: Wolfman Jack/ Robert Weston Smith (56) American
internationally famous gravelly-voiced, howling wolfman disc jockey; influenced
by Dr. Jive, Jockey Jack, Professor Bob and Sugar Daddy and Alan Freed, the ultimate
deejay of New York radio. He got his big break when he became a "gofer"
at Paramount. His first radio job was at WYOU-AM in Newport News, Virginia. he
developed his first radio name, Daddy Jules, a tribute to the influence Black
DJs had on him in his formative years. His energy and style produced a barrage
of listeners. But after opening a dance club, the Ku Klux Klan burn a cross on
his lawn, he decided to move to Shreveport, working at Shreveport's KCIJ-AM, before
relocating to Mexico. He found national fame at XERF-AM in Mexico. People were
wondering who he actually was, and artists such as
Leon Russell, Todd Rundgren, Freddie
King and the Guess Who produced chart hits about the radio personality "Wolfman
Jack". The person behind Wolfman
Jack was revealed in George Lucas' 1973 Academy Award-winning film, American Graffiti.
Although the mystery was solved, he continued to be a success, hosting NBC-TV's
The Midnight Special. He made more than 80 television appearances (died
of a heart attack) b. January 21st 1938.
1999: Guy Mitchell/Albert George Cernik (72)
Croatian-American pop singer; born in Detroit, Michigan, at the age of eleven,
he was signed by Warner Brothers Pictures, to be groomed as a child star, and
he also performed on the radio on Station KFWB in LA, California. He went on to
successful in the UK and Australia as well as in his homeland. His first hit was
1951's "My Heart Cries for You". As an international recording star
of the 1950s he achieved record sales in excess of 44 million and this included
six million-selling singles. His songs included "Belle, Belle, My Liberty
Belle", "Feet Up (Pat Him On The Po-po)", "Heartaches By The
Number", "Knee Deep In The Blues", "Look At That Girl",
"My Heart Cries for You", "Ninety Nine Years (Dead or Alive)",
"Pretty Little Black Eyed Susie", "Rock-a-Billy", "Same
Old Me", "She Wears Red Feathers" and "Singing the Blues".
1957 he had his own television show. As
well as his sing career, in the 1950s and 1960s he acted in films along side of
and Pat Crowley (sadly
died at Desert Springs Hospital in Las Vegas from complications following cancer
February 27th 1927.
Dennis Emmanuel Brown (42) Jamaican reggae singer, was one of the pioneer
in the lovers rock style of reggae, and with 78 albums to his name was one of
the most prolific names in the business. His first commercially successful song
internationally was "Money In My Pocket" on the Joe Gibbs label, and
by the late 1970s, Brown had recorded and performed chart-toppers such as "Sitting
& Watching", "Wolves and Leopards", "Here I Come"
and "Revolution"; many featuring Sly and Robbie as the rhythm section
and he frequently recorded with King Jammy and Gussie Clarke. Bob Marley cited
him as his favourite singer and dubbed him "The Crown Prince of Reggae"
(he was rushed to a Kingston hospital with a collapsed lung. This is not usually
a fatal condition, but he was so weakened from cocaine use) b.
February 1st 1957
"Cub" Koda (51)
American rock singer, guitarist, songwriter, disc jockey, music critic, and record
is perhaps best known for writing the song "Smokin' in the Boys' Room".
When performed by Cub's rock band Brownsville Station, the song reached No.3 in
the Billboard charts in 1974, and was later covered by Mötley Crüe.
He formed Brownsville Station in Ann Arbor in 1969. Brownsville Station's early
albums included song covers from bands which had inspired them. In 1970, they
released their debut studio album No BS. which included their biggest hit, "Smokin'
In the Boys Room", from their 1973 album Yeah!. The track sold over two million
copies and was awarded a gold disc status by the RIAA on 15 January 1974. Cub
co-wrote and edited the All Music Guide to the Blues and Blues for Dummies and
put together the CD of blues classics accompanying the latter title, personally
selecting versions of each song that appeared on it. He also contributed liner
notes for the Trashmen, Jimmy Reed, J. B. Hutto, The Kingsmen, and the Miller
Sisters, among others (failure
due to diabetes)
October 1st 1948.
Raymond Matthews Brown (75) American jazz double bassist, born in Pittsburgh,
he had piano lessons from the age of eight. After noticing how many pianists attended
his high school, he thought of taking up the trombone, but was unable to afford
one. With a vacancy in the school jazz orchestra, he took up the upright bass.
After playing in the Jimmy Hinsley Sextet and the Snookum Russell band, at aged
20 he relocated to New York where he was soon hired by Dizzy Gillespie. He played
and recorded with many greats before in 1966, he settled in Los Angeles where
he was in high demand working for various television show orchestras. He also
accompanied some of the leading artists of the day, including Frank Sinatra, Billy
Eckstine, Tony Bennett, Sarah Vaughan, and Nancy Wilson. He also managed his former
musical partners, the Modern Jazz Quartet, as well as a young Quincy Jones, produced
some shows for the Hollywood Bowl, wrote jazz bass instruction books, and developed
a jazz cello. It
was whilst in LA that he composed music for films and television shows. He was
awarded his first Grammy for his composition, "Gravy Waltz", a tune
which would later be used as the theme song for The Steve Allen Show. He was one
of the most in-demand double bass players and continued to play until his death
In 2003, Ray was inducted into the Down Beat Jazz Hall of Fame (he
died in his sleep, after having played golf, before a show in Indianapolis) b.
Mann/Herbert Jay Solomon (73) Jewish
American jazz flutist born in Brooklyn, New York, he was an important early practitioner
of world music. Early in his career, he also played tenor saxophones and clarinets
but he was among the first jazz musicians to specialize on the flute and was perhaps
jazz music's preeminent flutist during the 1960s. His most popular single was
"Hijack," which was a Billboard No.1 dance hits of 1975. In 1961 he
took a tour of Brazil and returned to the United States to record with Brazilian
players including Antonio Carlos Jobim and guitarist Baden Powell. These albums
helped popularize the bossa nova. Many of his albums throughout his career returned
to Brazilian themes. In the early 1970s he founded his own label, Embryo Records,
distributed by Cotillion Records, a division of Atlantic Records. Embroy produced
jazz albums, such as Ron Carter's Uptown Conversation-1970 ; Miroslav Vitous'
first solo album, Infinite Search-1969; Phil Woods and his European Rhythm Machine
at the Frankfurt Jazz Festival-1971; and Dick Morrissey and Jim Mullen's Up-1976,
which featured the Average White Band as a rhythm section; and the 730 Series,
with a more rock-oriented style, including Zero Time-1971 by TONTO's Expanding
Head Band (sadly
Herbie died after a long brave battle with prostate cancer)
b. April 16th 1930.
2004: Todor Skalovski
(95) Macedonian composer, chorus and orchestra conductor, born in Tetovo,
Ottoman Empire. Among
his famous works is the Republic of Macedonia's national anthem - "Today
Over Macedonia" (died in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia)
2005: Renaldo "Obie" Benson (69)
American soul and R&B singer and songwriter. He was best known as the bass
and lead of Motown group The Four Tops, which he joined in 1953 and continued
to perform with for over five decades, until April 8, 2005. He also co-wrote "What's
Going On" which became a No. 2 hit for Marvin Gaye in 1971, and which Rolling
Stone rated as #4 on their List of Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
released in 2004. Renaldo was admitted as a member of the Four Tops to the Rock
and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990. The group was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk
of Fame in 1997, followed by the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1999 (sadly died
fighting lung cancer) b. June 14th 1937 .. read
Luther Vandross (54)
American R&B and soul singer-songwriter and record producer. During his career,
Vandross sold over twenty-five million albums and won eight Grammy Awards including
Best Male R&B Vocal Performance four times. He won four Grammy Awards in 2004
including the Grammy Award for Song of the Year for the track "Dance With
My Father Again", co-written with Richard Marx. (died in JFK Medical Centre
in New Jersey, two years after suffering a major stroke) b.
April 20th 1951 .. read
2006: Rufus Harley Jr (70)
American jazz musician,
born near Raleigh, North Carolina, of Cherokee and
known primarily as the first jazz musician to adopt
the Scottish great Highland bagpipe as his primary instrument. He made his bagpipe
performance debut in 1964 and from 1965 to 1970 he released four recordings as
leader on the Atlantic label, also recording as a sideman with Herbie Mann, Sonny
Stitt, and Sonny Rollins in the 1960s and 1970s. He later recorded with Laurie
Anderson, appearing on her 1982 album Big Science and The Roots on their 1995
album Do You Want More?!!!??!. In addition to bagpipes, on these albums he also
plays tenor saxophone, flute, or/and electric soprano saxophone
(sadly lost to prostate cancer)
b. May 20th 1936.
2006: Robbie "Rocket"
Watts (47) Australian guitarist for the Cosmic Psychos a punk rock
band based in Melbourne and rural Victoria. He joined the band in 1990 replacing
guitarist Peter "Dirty" Jones and his first album with the group was
"Blokes You Can Trust". Robbie remained the band's sole guitarist until
his death (died suddenly just after
a show in Bendigo) b. ????
2006: Jaye Michael Davis (62) American
veteran radio deejay (died in a motorcycle accident) b.????
Mel Galley (60) UK guitarist with Trapeze,
Whitesnake, Finders Keepers and Phenomena. While with Whitesnake, he badly injured
his arm at a fairground in Germany and had to leave the band, as he was unable
to play guitar because of a nerve damage as result of incompetent surgery. Later
he became known for playing with "The Claw", a specially developed spring
and wire device fitted to his hand which enabled him to play guitar again (sadly
died of cancer)
b. March 8th 1948.
2010: Lele/Victor Alexis Rivera Santiago (24) Puerto
Rican rapper and reggae artist; he recorded solo or as part of a duo with
partner Endo under Lele y Endo. He wrote basically every single song & hit
Hector 'El Father' performed in the years he was an active artist, but in 2008,
Lele had threatened to sue Hector "El Father" for not
receiving royalties for more than 40 songs he had co-written with him (tragically
Lele was shot dead while in his car)
Charlie Craig (73) American Grammy-nominated
songwriter born and raised in Watts Mill, South Carolina. He relocated to Nashville
and spent over 40 years in the music industry. Some of his more than 300 recorded
credits as a songwriter include "I Think I'm in Love", "I Would
Like to See You Again", "She's Single Again", "Wanted",
"Miss Mis Behavin'", "The Generation Gap", "Leavin's
Been a Long Time Comin'" and "Waking Up With You". They have been
recorded by the likes of Conway Twitty, Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers, Alan Jackson,
Travis Tritt, Johnny Cash, Aaron Tippin and George Strait
Bébé Manga (60) Cameroonian singer,
born In Mamfe,
considered one of the most popular makossa singers of the 80s and best known for
her song is "Ami O". She started her career in 1975, singing in a night
club in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire called "Son de Guitare"/Sound of
a Guitar. In
the late 90's, she recorded another world-class song, "Mota Benamaa",
deploring the situation of children suffering around the world. Her talents were
celebrated at the Top D'Or 2005 in Abidjan, when she was voted one of the best
African artists of all time. Bébé is also featured on Manu Dibango's
"Manu Safari" album (sadly died from a cardiac arrest) b.
2011: Ruth Roberts (84)
American songwriter, the songwriter who
penned "Meet the Mets", written as an upbeat fight song for the struggling
young baseball team. She studied at the Juilliard School of Music in New York.
In 1947, Ruth recorded her first song, "The Moon is Always Bigger on a Saturday
Night," performed by Orrin Tucker and his orchestra. Over the next two decades
her songs were recorded by some of the great stars of that era including Arthur
Godfrey, Hugo Winterhalter, the McGuire sisters, plus Buddy Holly and The Beatles,
who each did versions of "Mailman, Bring Me No More Blues" (sadly
died of lung cancer) b. 1927
Evelyn Lear/Evelyn Shulman (86) American
opera singer, born in Brooklyn, New York, and completed her musical education
at Hunter College, New York University and the Juilliard School of Music studying
voice, piano, French horn and composition. Between 1959 and 1992, she appeared
in more than forty operatic roles, appeared with every major opera company in
the US and won a Grammy Award in 1966. She was well known for her musical
versatility, having sung all three main female roles in Der Rosenkavalier. She
was also known for her work on 20th century pieces by Robert Ward, Alban Berg,
Marvin David Levy, Rudolf Kelterborn and Giselher Klebe.
(?) b. January 8th 1926.
2012: Fritz Pauer (68)
Austrian jazz pianist and composer, he made his
first recording with the Hans Koller quartet in 1962. He moved to Berlin, Germany,
1964-68, and played at Dug's Night Club & Jazzgalery as accompanist for Herb
Geller, Johnny Griffin, Don Byas, Booker Erwin, Dexter Gordon, Art Farmer, Leo
Wright, Carmell Jones, Pony Poindexter, Jimmy Woode and vocalist Annie Ross, recording
with many of them. From 1968-1982 he taught piano at the Jazz Department, Vienna
Conservatory. In 1970, Fritz started recording with trumpeter/flugelhornist Art
Farmer, a relationship that would continue into the 1990s. He retired from the
University in Graz (Austria) Jazzdepartement in 2009. He was honoured with
the Golden Cross of Austria in 2003, an Honour for Lifetime work in Jazzmusic,
composition, piano, teaching in
b. October 14th 1943
2012: Oswald "Ossie" Hibbert (62) Jamaican
organist, keyboard player and record producer; he began his career in Jamaican
music in the mid-1970s, working in bands such as The Professionals, The Aggrovators
and The Revolutionaries, and playing on dozens of albums by artists such as Johnny
Clarke, Gregory Isaacs, Jimmy London, Delroy Wilson, and Linval Thompson. He recorded
two solo albums in the 1970s, Crueshal Dub-76 and Satisfaction in Dub-78, and
in the late 70s began working as a producer of other artists at Channel One Studios,
his album productions including Gregory Isaacs Meets Ronnie Davis, Mr. Issacs,,
Creation, Cocaine In My Brain, and Earthquake Dub. He opened his own Ossie Hibbert
Productions company in the 1980s and worked with artists such as Gregory Isaacs,
Carlene Davis, and Pat Kelly. In the 2000s, his credits include production work
for Chaka Demus & Pliers, Errol Dunkley, Peter Hunnigale, and The Wailing
2013: Texas Johnny Brown (85) American
blues guitarist, songwriter and singer born in Ackerman, MI; as a child he played
guitar alongside his father on the streets of his hometown before the family moved
to Houston in 1946. His
jazzy guitar style of playing the blues has been attested to the early influence
of Charlie Christian on him. Johnny is best known
for his composition "Two Steps from the Blues" and in his long career,
he worked with the likes of Joe Hinton, Amos Milburn, Ruth Brown, Bobby "Blue"
Bland, Lavelle White, Buddy Ace and Junior Parker. Then in 1998, he finally released
an album under his own name, Nothin' but the Truth and in September 2001, he was
named 'Blues Artist of the Year' at the Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
Blues Festival, which took place in Houston (sadly
Johnny died fighting lung cancer) b.
February 22nd 1928
Maarten van Roozendaal (51) Dutch
singer, comedian and songwriter born in Heiloo, North Holland, Netherlands. He
recorded "I'm So Curious", and variously worked with Paul de Munnik,
Willem Ennes, Egon Power, Marcel de Groot and Kim Soepnel. In his youth he was
involved with music, and he combined this with his work as a bartender. He wrote
music for Teleac school television, playing piano, plus he played drums in a punk
band, and directed and advised other artists. In 1994, he won the jury and audience
at the Cabaret Festival. He mainly performed his own work, but also that of Cornelis
Vreeswijk and Bram Vermeulen (sadly Maarten died
fighting of lung cancer) b. May 2nd 1962.
2013: Gary Shearston (74) Australian singer-songwriter
born in Inverell, NSW; he
become a professional singer at 19 working in hotels
and with the American gospel and blues singer Brother John Sellers. In 1966 and
1967 he became Australia's biggest record seller of folk music. He had his own
national television show called Just Folk and Peter Paul and Mary recorded a cover
of his "Sometime Lovin'". Gary also had a Top 10 hit in the UK in 1974
with his cover version of the Cole Porter song "I Get a Kick out of You".
In 1989 he became a priest in the Anglican Church of Australia in rural NSW (sadly
Gary died from a stroke) b.
January 9th 1939.
Rita F. Betty Cody Binette (92) Canadian-born
American country music singer; she began yodeling and singing at a young age and
her first appearance was at WCOU Radio in Lewiston at the age of 15 and began
performing with Lone Pine and in the early 50s they were signed to RCA.
Rita toured with several well-known musicians across the United States and Canada,
including Kitty Wells, Chet Atkins, Hank Snow, and Dick Curless. She performed
her whole life, specializing in yodeling, country and french songs and was inducted
into the Maine Country Music Hall to Fame in 1979 (?)
b. August 17th 1921.
Oscar Yatco (83) Filipino
conductor and violin prodigy; he got his music teachers diploma at the young
age of 16 from the University of the Philippines in 1947. He went on to serve
as conductor, concert master, professor and music consultant for local orchestras
such as the Manilla Symphony Orchestra, the Cultural Center of the Philippine
Philharmonic Orchestra; and overseas National Theater Orchestra, Wagner Festival
Orchestra and State Academy of Music in Hannover, Germany. (?)
b. November 23rd 1930.
Red Lane/Hollis Rudolph DeLaughter (76) American
country singer and award winning songwriter, born in Zona, Louisiana; he served
in the U.S. Air Force before deciding to pursue a career in music. He started
as a solo act performing with his guitar at local nightclubs. His break came in
1964 when Justin Tubb asked him to join his band and introduced him to music publisher
Buddy Killen. Red went on to perform in the bands of both Dottie West and Merle
Haggard, and on recordings by Johnny Cash, Bobby Bare and Willie Nelson. He had
huge success as a songwriter, penning hits such as Eddy Arnolds They
Dont Make Love Like They Used To, Merle
Haggard's "My Own Kind of Hat", George Strait's "Tell Me Something
Bad About Tulsa", Willie Nelson's "Blackjack County Chain" and
"Till I Get It Right" by Tammy Wynette. He was inducted into the Nashville
Songwriters Hall of Fame in Tennessee in 1993. (sadly
Red died after a long battle with cancer) b. February
2015: Val Doonican (88) Irish
singer and television presenter
Greenfield OBE (86) English music critic and
broadcaster, born in Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex. He
joined the Manchester Guardian in 1953, as a filing clerk. He then became a lobby
correspondent in the House of Commons. After
which he was a record critic for the newspaper from 1955, a music critic from
1964, and chief music critic from 1977 until his retirement in 1993. He contributed
to Gramophone magazine from 1960, and was joint editor of The Stereo Record Guide
after 1960. A regular broadcaster on the BBC, he presented classical music programmes
on the World Service, including his selection of music and requests on The Greenfield
Collection, and was a regular contributor to the Building a Library feature of
Radio 3's Record Review, now CD Review, for many years. Edward was awarded the
OBE in 1994. ()
b. July 3rd 1928.
1971: Bobby Donaldson (48)
American jazz drummer, after
playing locally in the early 1940s, Donaldson played with Russell Procope while
serving in the Army in New York City. In 1946-47 he worked with Cat Anderson,
and following this played with Edmond Hall, Andy Kirk, Lucky Millinder, Buck Clayton,
Red Norvo, and Sy Oliver/Louis Armstrong. He was a prolific session musician for
much of the 1950s and 1960s, playing with Helen Merrill, Ruby Braff, Mel Powell,
Benny Goodman, Count Basie, Bobby Jaspar, Herbie Mann, André Hodeir, Kenny
Burrell, Lonnie Johnson, Frank Wess, Willis Jackson, and Johnny Hodges (?)
b. November 29th 1922.
"Cleanhead" Vinson (70) American
alto saxophonist, jazz and blues shouter; he acquired his nickname after a hair-straightening
mishap left him bald. Born in Houston, Texas, he was a member of the horn section
in Milton Larkin's orchestra, which he joined in the late 1930.
He then moved
to New York and joined the Cootie Williams Orchestra from 1942 to 1945. He formed
his own in 1945, signing with Mercury Records, and enjoying a double-sided hit
in 1947 with his R&B chart-topper "Old Maid Boogie", and the song
that would prove to be his signature number, "Kidney Stew Blues". Eddie's
jazz leanings were probably heightened during 1952-1953, when his band included
a young John Coltrane. In the early 1960s he moved to LA and began working with
the Johnny Otis Revue. A 1970 appearance at the Monterey Jazz Festival with Otis
spurred a bit of a comeback for Eddie. Throughout the 70s he worked high-profile
blues and jazz sessions for Count Basie, Johnny Otis, Roomful of Blues, Arnett
Cobb, and Buddy Tate. He also composed steadily, including "Tune Up"
and "Four", both of which have been incorrectly
attributed to Miles Davis. Eddie recorded extensively
during his fifty plus year career and performed regularly in Europe and the United
States (died from a heart attack whilst undergoing chemotherapy)
b. December 18th 1917.
1990: Snooky Lanson/Roy Landman (76) American
singer and TV personality, born in Memphis, Tennessee; he was a band singer with
Francis Craig's dance band before joining the NBC television series Your Hit Parade
in 1950 through to 1957, chosen to replace Frank Sinatra. Befroe hand in 1941,
he recorded the hit ''By the Light of the Silvery Moon'' with the Ray Noble Band.
A later hit, ''The Old Master Painter,'' helped him land the ''Hit Parade'' job.
After Hit Parade ended, he performed in nightclubs and on local television shows
in Atlanta and Shreveport. He guest-starred in 1958 on The Gisele MacKenzie Show.
In 1961, he was one of five rotating hosts on the NBC-TV program Five Star Jubilee.
January 1960, Crossroads TV Productions videotaped a pilot in Springfield, Missouri
for a proposed pop music-variety series called Snooky Lanson Time. Guests
were Brenda Lee, the Anita Kerr Singers, Betty Ann Grove and Paul Mitchell's instrumental
combo. He spent the 1960s to the 1980s as a Chrysler car salesman in Nashville,
Tennessee (?) b.
March 27th 1914.
Camarón de la Isla/José Monje Cruz (41)
flamenco singer born in Cádiz,
at 16 he won first prize at the Festival del Cante Jondo in Mairena de Alcor.
He then went to Madrid with Miguel de los Reyes and in 1968 became a resident
artist at the Tablao Torres Bermejas where he remained for twelve years. It was
de Lucía, the pair toured
extensively over 8 years and recorded nine
albums. Many consider José
to be the single most popular and influential flamenco "cantador" of
the modern period. Although his work was criticized by some traditionalists, he
was one of the first to feature an electric bass in his songs. This was a turning
point in the history of Flamenco music that helped distinguish Nuevo Flamenco.
(He sadly died of lung cancer, it was estimated that more
than 100,000 people attended his funeral.) b. December
Ray Brown (75) American
jazz double bassist, born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; arriving in New York at
the age of twenty, he met up with Hank Jones, with whom he had previously worked,
and was introduced to Dizzy Gillespie, who was looking for a bass player. Gillespie
hired Brown on the spot and he soon played with such established musicians as
Art Tatum and Charlie Parker. From
1946 to 1951 he played in Gillespie's band. He played
in many TV show orchestras, and with leading artists, including Frank Sinatra,
Billy Eckstine, Tony Bennett, Sarah Vaughan, and Nancy Wilson. He lead his own
band the Modern Jazz Quartet, managed a young Quincy Jones,
also wrote jazz double bass instruction books, and developed a jazz cello
(Ray sadly died while taking a nap before a show in Indianapolis)
b. October 13th 1926.
Ray Goins (71) American bluegrass banjoist
and bluegrass music pioneer born in Bramwell, West Virginia. During his 50 year
career, Ray was a member of the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers; Ralph Stanley & the
Clinch Mountain Boys, before forming the Goins Brothers with his younger brother,
Melvin. They were inducted into Bill Monroe's Bean Blossom Hall of Fame in the
fall of 2001. Ray also received Morehead State University's Appalachian Treasure
Award (?) b. January 3rd 1936.
2007: Git Gay/Birgit Carp nee Holmberg (85)
Swedish revue director, actress and singer, her
parents wanted her to become a concerto pianist and sent her to the Music Conservatory
in Malmö. However, in the end of the 1940s, she was invited to act as a prima
donna in a summer revue by director Sigge Holmberg. The following year, she performed
at the Gröna Lund in Stockholm in the revue Klart Grönan. In 1949, she
was hired by the entertainer Karl Gerhard to participate in the revue Där
de stora torskarna går in Gothenburg. In 1960, Git set up the Git Gay Show
at Lorensberg Theatre in Gothenburg. The show is sometimes considered the first
modern restaurant performance in Sweden (?) b.
July 13th 1921.
Beverly Sills (78) American
operatic soprano whose peak career was between the 50s-70s. In her prime she was
the only real rival to Joan Sutherland as the leading bel canto stylist. Although
she sang a repertoire from Handel and Mozart to Puccini, Massenet, Wagner, and
Verdi, she was known for her performances in coloratura soprano roles in live
opera and recordings. Sills was largely associated with the operas of Donizetti,
of which she performed and recorded many roles. Her signature roles include the
title role in Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor, the title role in Massenet's Manon,
Marie in Donizetti's La fille du régiment, the three heroines in Offenbach's
Les contes d'Hoffmann, Rosina in Rossini's The Barber of Seville, and Violetta
in Verdi's La traviata. After retiring from singing in 1980, she became the general
manager of the New York City Opera. In 1994, she became the Chairman of Lincoln
Center and then, in 2002, of the Metropolitan Opera, stepping
down in 2005. Sills lent her celebrity to further her charity work for the prevention
and treatment of birth defects. (Beverly
sadly died after a brave battle with cancer) b.
May 25th 1929
Hy Zaret/Hyman Harry Zaritsky (99) American
lyricist and composer best known as the co-author of the 1955 hit "Unchained
Melody", one of the most recorded songs of the 20th. Born in New York City,
he attended West Virginia University and Brooklyn Law School, where he received
an LLB. He scored his first major success in 1935, when he teamed up with Saul
Chaplin and Sammy Cahn to co-write the pop standard "Dedicated to You."
The early '40s brought some collaborations with Alex C. Kramer and Joan Whitney,
including 1941's "It All Comes Back to Me Now" and the socially conscious,
WWII-themed "My Sister and I".
Hy also wrote lyrics for an English translation of the French Resistance song
"The Partisan", which was later covered by Leonard Cohen. In 1944 he
and Lou Singer wrote the popular hit novelty song "One Meatball", based
on a song popular among Harvard undergraduates (died a few
weeks before his 100th birthday) b. August 21st 1907.
Ishmeet Singh Sodhi (19) Indian
singer; born in Ludhiana, Punjab, India, he was the winner of Amul STAR Voice
of India 2007. Ishmeet had been working with Salim-Suleiman to produce a song
called 'Shukriya' and had promoted this single with live performances. He
toured Hong Kong and Malaysia and sung in concerts with members of the Voice of
India competition. He put time aside to sing kirtan, or hymns, in gurdwaras. His
last performance in a gurdwara was alongside the well-known singer amongst the
sikhs, Veer Manpreet Singh (died under mysterious circumstances
in a swimming pool at the Chaaya Island Dhonveli beach resort in Maldives where
he had gone to perform in an event)
b. September 2nd 1988.
Natasha Shneider (52) Russian-born keyboardist,
bassist and singer born in Moscow, and later relocated to America. She was most
notably the keyboardist and vocalist in the musical group Eleven, and was the
partner of bandmate Alain Johannes. She also played bass on the group's first
three albums. Natasha and Alain contributed to Queens of the Stone Age's Songs
for the Deaf, and joined the band as part of their touring line-up in support
of their 2005 album Lullabies to Paralyze. They also wrote, performed and produced
with Chris Cornell for his 1999 solo album, Euphoria Morning, and formed part
of his band for the subsequent tour. Previous band affiliations include Desert
Sessions, Black Russian, and Walk the Moon. She also acted in two feature films,
playing the roles of Russian cosmonaut Irina Yakunina in '2010' in 1984, and Polish
former exchange student Wanda Yakubovska in the film 'Spiker' in 1986, as well
as minor roles in the TV shows Miami Vice and Hill Street Blues
(Natasha sadly died following a brave battle with cancer)
b. May 22nd 1956.
2010: M. G. Radhakrishnan (70) Indian
music director born in Harippad, he
had once been an artiste with the All India Radio, and burst on to the Malayalam
film industry with his music composition for the film Thambu in 1978. Some of
his compositions like Naadha nee varum kaalocha kelkuvan for the movie Chaamaram
and Pinakkamano for Ananthabhadram are among all-time favourite Malayalam songs.
Other famous movies for which he composed music include Thambu, Thakara, Poochakkoru
Mookuthi, Vellanakalude Naadu and Manichithrathazhu. (He
had been undergoing treatment for liver malfunction) b.
August 8th 1940.
Bengt Hallberg (80)
Swedish jazz pianist and also played the accordion on occasion.
He studied piano from an early age, wrote his first jazz arrangement at 13 and
made his first trio recordings when he was 17. In 1949 he recorded with the Swedish
alto saxophonist Arne Domnérus for the first time and the two musicians
continued to play together. From
he worked as a member of the Swedish Radio Big Band. Bengt
also played with leading visiting American players, including the trumpeter Clifford
Brown and the tenor saxaphonist Stan Getz and trumpeter/arranger Quincy Jones.
As well his playing, he later became in demand music writer for film and television,
as well as writing choral arrangements
(?) b. September 13th
Gregory Carroll (35) American
opera singer; in season 2010-2011, he made both his Lyric Opera of Chicago debut
and European operatic debut with Norwegian National Opera in Verdi's Aida. He
joined the roster of the Metropolitan Opera for Enchanted Island; he returned
to the role of Canio in Leoncavallos Pagliacci with Opera Lyra Ottawa, returned
to Chautauqua Opera for his debut as Edgardo in Donizettis Lucia di Lammermoor,
and sang his first performances as Alfred in Johann Strausss Die Fledermaus
with Portland SummerFest. In the 2012-13 season, he joined Los Angeles Opera and
returned to the roster of the Lyric Opera of Chicago for its production of Wagners
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, and again joins The Tacoma Symphony for Handels
Gregory died from a heart attack following a respiratory infection)
b. July 9th 1977.
Slavko Avsenik (85)
Slovene composer and piano accordionist, born in Begunje na Gorenjskem, Kingdom
of Yugoslavia. He hegan in 1953 with the formation of the Avsenik Brothers Ensemble,
and produced more than 1,000 songs and enjoyed success both in Slovenia and in
other parts of Europe and America, and is viewed as a Slovenian cultural icon.
His band was Slovenia's most popular music band, winning countless awards including
eight consecutive television competitions, twelve from German network television,
eighteen as Germany's most popular band, the recording industry's "European
Oscar" in 1975, the Golden Rose Award for being the most requested on Austrian
radio, in 1979, Slovenia's
plaque, and the "Hermann Löns" award from the German Minister of
(?) b. November 26th 1929.
2015: Roy C. Bennett/Israel Brodsky (96)
American songwriter born in
Brooklyn, New York; as a young boy he befriended a newly arrived neighbour, Sid
Tepper and thier mutual interest in music led to a highly successful music collaboration
that spanned more than twenty-five years. Between 1945 and 1970 they had close
to three hundred musical compositions published. Songs included "Red Roses
for a Blue Lady", "Naughty Lady of Shady Lane", "Suzy
"Nuttin' For Christmas", "Kewpie Doll", "Glad All Over",
and so many more, including 42 songs for Elvis Presley. He wrote Cliff Richard's
No.1 hit, "The Young Ones",
and in 2002, Roy was invited to England to meet Cliff Richard and sang "The
Young Ones" with him before an audience of 12,000 people in Birmingham.published
the Choral Singer's Handbook which is still in print today and fascinated by the
desktop computer, he created a software program called PowerMacros for WordPerfect
b. August 12th 1918
Renée de Haan (61) Dutch singer who grew up in in Amsterdam's
Jordaan, where she sang in local bars before being discovered at the age of 31
by record company EMI. In 1986, she broke through with two songs, "In A World
Without You" and "Do Not Over You What Love Is" . Other well-known
songs include "Dirty hypocrite" and "Men (Always wrong again)"
died while battling cancer) b.
July 9th 1954.
1969: Brian Jones (27) English
lead-rhythm guitarist, multi-musician, vocalist and founder-leader of The Rolling
Stones, born in Cheltenham. A highly gifted multi-instrumentalist, he played guitar,
slide guitar, piano, tamboura,
sitar, organ, dulcimer, mellotron, xylophone,
marimba, recorder, clarinet, in total he is known to have played at least 15 instruments
with the Stones >>> read
more <<< (allegedly drowned while under
the influence of drugs & alcohol after taking a midnight swim in his pool.
Some suspect Brian was murdered) b.
February 28th 1942.
Jim Morrison (27) American singer-songwriter,
poet, composer; he was best known as the lead singer and lyricist of The Doors
and is widely considered to be one of the most charismatic frontmen in rock music
history. He was also the author of several books of poetry and the director of
a documentary and short film. Although Jim was known for his baritone vocals,
many fans, scholars, and journalists have discussed his theatrical stage persona,
his self-destructiveness, and his work as a poet. He was ranked number 47 on Rolling
Stone's "100 Greatest Singers of All Time". The Doors rock band was
formed in 1965 in Los Angeles, California, hits include hits, including "Light
My Fire", "Love Me Two Times", "Love Her Madly" and "Touch
Me". According to the RIAA, they have sold over 32.5 million albums in the
US alone. The band has sold 80 to 100 million albums worldwide. Jims alcohol and
drug abuse and open disdain for authority made him a rock hero; his mysterious
death in Paris, France at the age of 27 made him a pop culture icon (found
dead in a bathtub, the cause of death was given as a heart attack)
December 8th 1943.
1971: Don McPherson (29)
American R&B singer; born in Indianapolis, he was known for his vocal abilities
and received several awards between 1961 and 1963, while he served in the United
States Army. Don was the original lead singer of the group The Main Ingredient,
formed in Harlem in 1964, members included
Donald, Luther Simmons Jr. and Tony
Silvester. They first called themselves, 'Trio' and joined the writing team of
Leiber & Stoller. They changed their name to 'The Insiders' and then finally
to, 'The Main Ingredient'. In 1970 Don and ain
Ingredient released their first Top
30 hit, 'You've Been My Inspirartion',
and the hits continued with the Top 20 hit, 'I'm So Proud,' and the Top Ten hit,
'Spinning Around (I Must Be Falling In Love)'. This
was soon followed by the black
'Black Seeds Keep On Growing' before Donald's untimely death just six days before
his 30th birthday (sadly Don died fighting leukaemia)
McDowell (68) American
blues singer, guitarist player in the North Mississippi style. Born in Rossville,
Tennessee, he actually may be considered the first of the bluesmen from the 'North
Mississippi' region - parallel to, but somewhat east of the Delta region - to
achieve widespread recognition for his work. He started playing guitar at the
age of 14 and played at dances around Rossville. He moved to Memphis in 1926 where
he worked in a number of jobs and played music for tips. He settled in Como in
1940 or 1941, continuing to perform music at dances and picnics. Initially he
played slide guitar using a pocket knife and then a slide made from a beef rib
bone, later switching to a glass slide for its clearer sound. He played with the
slide on his ring finger. The 1950s brought a rising interest in blues music and
folk music in the US and Fred was brought to wider public attention, beginning
when he was discovered and recorded in 1959 by Alan Lomax and Shirley Collins.
His records were popular, and he performed often at festivals and club and he
continued to perform blues in the North Mississippi blues style much as he had
for decades, but he sometimes performed on electric guitar rather than acoustic
guitar. Fred's 1969 album 'I Do Not Play No Rock 'N' Roll' was his first featuring
electric guitar. It features parts of an interview in which he discusses the origins
of the blues and the nature of love. (sadly Fred died after
a fight with cancer) b. January 12th 1904.
1973: Laurens Hammond (78) American
engineer and inventor in Evanston, Illinois, his inventions include, most famously,
the Hammond organ and the Hammond clock. He studied mechanical engineering at
Cornell University and graduated with an honors degree in 1916. At this time most
thoughts were concentrated on the ongoing World War I, and Laurens made his contribution
to the war effort serving his time with the American Expeditionary Force in France.
this, he moved to Detroit, where he was fortunate to occupy the post of chief
engineer of the Gray Motor Company, a manufacturer of marine engines. In 1919,
he invented a silent spring-driven clock. This invention brought
him enough money to leave Gray Motor Company and rent his own space in New York.
At the time of his retirement in 1960, he held 90 patents, he was granted another
20 before his death (?)
January 11th 1895.
1979: Louis Durey (91)
French composer born in Paris, as a composer he was primarily
self-taught, from the beginning, choral music was of great importance in his productivity.
His first work to gain recognition in the music world was for a piano duet titled
Carillons. At a 1918 concert this work attracted the interest of Maurice Ravel,
who recommended him to his publisher.
Sadly though he is probably the least remembered of Les six. After the Les six
period, Louis continued with his career. During the years of the Nazi occupation
of World War II, he worked with the French Resistance as a prominent member of
the Front National des Musiciens and wrote anti-Fascist songs. After the war he
embraced hard-line communism, he voiced his growing left-wing ideals that put
him in an artistic isolation that lasted for the rest of his life
b. May 27th 1888
Dillon "Curley" Russell (69)
American jazz double-bassist, who played bass on many bebop recordings.A
member of the Tadd Dameron Sextet, in his heyday he was in demand for his ability
to play at the rapid tempos typical of bebop, and appears on several key recordings
of the period, recording with the likes of Art Blakey, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis,
Stan Getz, Thelonious Monk, Johnny Griffin and Zoot Sims. He left the music business
in the late 1950s. According to jazz historian Phil Schaap the classic bebop tune
"Donna Lee", a contrafact on "Back Home Again In Indiana",
was named after Curley's daughter (?)
March 19th 1917.
1986: Rudy Vallee/Hubert Prior Vallée (84)
American singer, actor, multi-musician, bandleader,
entertainer in Island Pond, Vermont. Having played drums in his high school band,
he played clarinet and saxophone in various bands around New England in his youth
before joining the US Navy. From 1924 through 1925, he played with the Savoy Havana
Band at the Savoy Hotel in London. He returned to the States to obtain a degree
in Philosophy from Yale and to form his own band, "Rudy Vallée and
the Connecticut Yankees" and given a recording contract and in 1928. It was
in 1929 that he did his first film "Vagabond Lover". It was also in
1929 that he was picked up for the Fleishchmans Radio Music Hour and later
the Sealtest Hour. Rudy's
last hit song was the 1943 reissue of the melancholy ballad "As Time Goes
By", popularized in the feature film Casablanca. In
1941 he enlisted in the Coast Guard to help direct the 11th district band as a
Chief Petty Officer. Eventually he was promoted to Lieutenant and lead the 40
piece band to great success. Later he concerntrated more on his acting career,
besides his early films, he appeared in "How To Succeed in Business Without
Really Trying" and "Won Ton Ton, The Dog That Saved Hollywood",
"Gentlemen Marry Brunettes", "The Helen Morgan
Story", "Why Was I Born?", "How to Succeed in Business Without
Really Trying", "Live a Little, Love a Little", "The Night
They Raided Minsky's" among others. Also on TV he appeared in Alias Smith
and Jones, Ellery Queen, CHiPs,
Santa Barbara to mention a
few and he played Lord Marmaduke Fogg on the Batman TV series (?)
b. July 28th 1901.
1986: Greg Carroll (26)
New Zealand Maori crew member with
U2. Greg met U2 in Auckland in 1984, during The Unforgettable Fire tour and worked
for the promoter of U2's shows in Auckland. He joined the U2 team and was responsible
for "ensuring" for Bono. His
death was tremendous for U2 and after returning from Gregs funeral Bono wrote
a song specially dedicated to him: One Tree Hill, and devoted the U2 album The
Joshua Tree to Greg (tragically he died in a motorcycle
in Dublin when a drunk driver collided into
1999: Mark Sandman (46)
and musical instrument inventor; born in Newton,
Massachusetts and graduated from the University of Massachusetts. An
indie rock icon and longtime fixture on the Boston/Cambridge music scene, he was
best known as the lead singer and slide bass player of the band Morphine releasing
five albums . He was also known as a prominent member of the Boston blues-rock
band Treat Her Right and the founder of Hi-n-Dry, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based
recording studio and independent record label. His instruments were extensively
altered and sometimes built by hand to create unique sounds. In Morphine, he played
primarily a two-string slide bass guitar usually tuned to a fifth, but he also
was known to play a unitar, named after the one-stringed instrument in American
blues tradition, and three-string slide bass with one bass string and two unison
strings tuned an octave higher, usually A (Mark
tragically collapsed on stage at the Giardini del Principe in Palestrina, Latium,
Ital, near Rome while performing with Morphine, he was pronounced dead of a heart
September 24th 1952.
Delia Ann Derbyshire (64)
English musician and composer of electronic music and musique concrète.
Born in Coventry, she is best known for her electronic realisation of Ron Grainer's
theme music to the British science fiction television series Doctor Who and for
her work with the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. In 1959 she applied for a position
at Decca Records only to be told that the company did not employ women in their
recording studios, so instead she took a position at the UN in Geneva for the
next year. Besides the Doctor Who theme, Delia also composed and produced scores,
incidental pieces and themes for nearly 200 BBC Radio and BBC TV programmes. In
1973, she left the BBC and after a brief stint working at Hodgson's Electrophon
studio during which time she contributed to the soundtrack to the film The Legend
of Hell House, Delia stopped composing music. She returned
to music in the late nineties after having her interest renewed by fellow electronic
musician Peter Kember and was working on an album when she died (Delia
sadly died of renal failure while recovering from breast cancer)
b. May 5th 1937.
2001: Johnny Russell (61) American
country singer, songwriter and comedian born in Mississippi, but he moved with
his family at age 11 to Fresno, California. Johnny is famed for his song 'Act
Naturally', which was made famous by Buck Owens, who recorded it in 1963, and
The Beatles in 1965. He is also known for being the first one to record 'He Stopped
Loving Her Today', in some surveys named as the greatest country song of all time
and the biggest hit for George Jones in 1980.
George Strait topped the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart with Johnny's song
'Let's Fall To Pieces Together'. His songs have been recorded by Burl Ives, Jim
Reeves, Jerry Garcia, Tamra Rosanes, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, and Linda Ronstadt
among others (died from diabetes-related complications) b.
January 23rd 1940.
2005: Pierre Michelot (77) French
bebop/hard bop double bass player, born
in Saint-Denis, Paris; he studied piano from 1936 until 1938, but switched to
playing bass at the age of sixteen. Through his career he played with the likes
of Rex Stewart, Coleman Hawkins, Django Reinhardt, Stéphane Grappelli,
Don Byas, Thelonious Monk, Lester Young, Dexter Gordon, Stan Getz, Bud Powell,
Zoot Sims, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Chet Baker, and many others. Pierre was
also a member of the Jacques Loussier Trio, known for the Play Bach album series.
Together with Miles Davis, he was responsible for the critically acclaimed soundtrack
of Louis Malle's Ascenseur pour l'échafaud. He also appeared as an unnamed
bass player in the movie Round Midnight. (In later life, Pierre suffered from
Alzheimer's disease) b. March 3rd 1928.
2006: Jack "Smilin" Smith (92)
American crooner, actor and former host of 'You Asked
for It'; He began his musical career at the age of 15, singing
with "The Three Ambassadors". He
became a solo baritone
crooner in 1939. Jack established a radio
show in 1945, he went on to host such guests as Dinah Shore, Margaret Whiting,
John Serry, Sr. and Ginny Simms. With the television's arrival, radio saw a decline
in audiences, but he soon became the host of You Asked For It in 1958, staying
with it in various roles until 1991. Following a guest appearance in the musical
film Make Believe Ballroom in 1949, Jack was offered the second lead in Warner
Bros.' On Moonlight Bay in 1951 opposite Doris Day (leukemia)
b. November 16th 1913.
Boots Randolph/Homer Louis Randolph III
he was the first ever sax player to record with Elvis, and the only one to ever
play solo with him, and he also recorded on the soundtracks for 8 of his movies.
Boots is also the saxophone player responsible for penning and playing the 1961
multi-million seller of "Yakety Sax" which was the closing theme to
the Benny Hill TV Specials. Boots can be heard on Roy Orbison's 1964 hit, "Oh,
Pretty Woman". "Little Queenie" by REO Speedwagon,
"Java" by Al Hirt, "Turn On Your Lovelight" by Jerry Lee Lewis,
and "Rockin' 'Round The Christmas Tree" by Brenda Lee, others out of
dozens include Chet Atkins >>>
MORE <<< (he
suffered a cerebral hemorrhage on June 25 and fell into a in coma from which he
never regained consciousness) b. 03.June.1927.
2008: Colin Cooper (69) English
frontman, vocalist, saxophonist and founder member of the Climax Blues Band, formed
in Stafford, England, he also played harp, flute and guitars. They released 18
albums, and their hit
singles include "Couldn't Get It Right",
"I Love You", "Couldn't Get It Right" and "I Love You".
They performed at major concerts and festivals around the world, including Glastonbury
and a 25-date German tour with the Godfather of British Blues, John Mayall. (Colin
sadly lost his battle with cancer) b.
Sayre (37) American violinist and co-founder
of Pretty Mighty Mighty and the Black Swans (he nearly drowned at a community
pool after suffering an apparent heart attack, and had been on life support for
several days before he passed away) b.1971
Oliver Schroer (53)
Canadian fiddle player; Oliver grew up in Vandeleur, Ontario, a small crossroads
near Markdale in rural Grey County. He attended Grey Highlands Secondary School
in Flesherton, where he played French horn in the school band and also took private
violin lessons. He started as a busker in the Toronto system subway with his guitar.
He went on to become a prolific composer, recording ten CDs in 14 years. He performed
in Europe and North America in clubs, cathedrals, and New York's Lincoln Centre.
Altogether, he produced or performed on over 100 albums of new traditional, acoustic,
and popular music, and wrote more than 1,000 pieces of music. (Sadly died from
leukemia) b. June 18th 1956.
Johnny MacRae (84)
American country songwriter; he served
in the navy for 15 years and left hoping for a career in the music industry. He
went on to write several well known and loved country songs, such as Conway Twittys
No.1 track Id Just Love to Lay You Down and Reba McEntires
(You Lift Me) Up to Heaven as well as Doug Stones Id
Be Better Off (In a Pine Box). In recent years, he and his wife have worked
on their farm,
making wine from various types of grapes and fruit and
raising poultry including geese, chickens,
and pheasants (sadly
Johnny has passed while fighting heart disease)
b. February 15th 1929.
2013: Bernard Vitet (77) French trumpetist,
and besides trumpet, he sang, composed and played flugelhorn, trombone, piano
and violin. Born in Paris, in his early years
he performed with Django Reinhardt, Gus Viseur, Eric Dolphy and Albert Ayler.
In 1964 he was co-founder of the first free jazz band in France together with
François Tusques. In the 1960s, he accompanied singers such as Serge Gainsbourg,
Barbara, Yves Montand, Claude François, Brigitte Bardot, Marianne Faithfull,
Colette Magny, Brigitte Fontaine, Lester Young,
Don Cherry, Chet Baker, Archie Shepp, Anthony
Braxton, the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Steve Lacy, Gato Barbieri, Jean-Luc Ponty
and Martial Solal. Under >>> READ
MORE <<< (sadly
died from respiratory failure)
b. May 26th 1934.
2014: Annik Honoré (56) Belgium
journalist, music promoter
and known for her association with Ian Curtis,
the former lead singer of Joy Division. Born in Mons, Annik moved to London in
1979, taking a job as a secretary at the Belgian Embassy
and in late 1979, she and journalist Michel Duval began promoting musical performances
at the Plan K venue in Brussels. performed on the club's opening night on October
16th. A few months later, in 1980,
she and Duval founded Factory Benelux as a Continental offshoot of Factory Records
as well as Les Disques du Crépuscule, an independent Belgian music label.
She left the music business in the mid-1980s and went on to work for the European
Union in Brussels. In a 2010 interview, she said her relationship with Joy
Curtis was entirely platonic (?) b.
October 12th 1957.
Peter Dawkins (68)
Zealand-born Australian record producer; born in Timaru, he started out
in his teens as a drummer and toured Europe in the
mid 60s with his bands Me and the Others, and The New Nadir. He returned home
in late '68 and started his production career with HMV Records, the NZ branch
of EMI, where he produced seven No.1 hits including "Nature" by The
Fourmyula. Then in 1972 he moved to Australia and became a house producer for
EMI Australia. In 1975 he moved to Festival Records, then on to CBS Records where
he produced a string of successful recordings, including hits for the New Zealand
rock group Dragon and Melbourne band Australian Crawl. During
this period, he also produced several albums and hit singles by singer-songwriter
Ross Ryan; Mi-Sex; Pseudo Echo; Air Supply; Slim Dusty; Russell Morris; and Billy
Thorpe, amongst many others. He won multiple production awards, including the
Countdown Producer of the Year. Sadly in the late 80s he developed Parkinson's
disease. In 1990 he opened a recording studio in Balmain, Sydney - Giant Studios,
and started his second label (through BMG) called Nova. The earlier Giant name
was bought by Irving Azoff, who was starting a label in the United States with
the same name. Sadly the development of Parkinson's disease
meant that he had to gradually cease work over the next few years, with
the shut-down of the studio in the mid-nineties. (tragically
he died of injuries from a fall)
b. November 27th 1946.
Buddie Petit/Joseph Crawford (40/41) American jazz cornettist
regarded as one of the best in New Orleans, in his early teens. By
the early 1910s he was one of the top horn players in the new style of music not
yet generally known as "jazz". He took Freddie Keppard's place in the
Eagle Band. He was known as a hard-drinking, fun loving man who played cornet
with great virtuosity and inventiveness. He was briefly lured to Los Angeles,
California by Jelly Roll Morton and Bill Johnson in 1917, but objected to being
told to dress and behave differently than he was accustomed to back home, and
promptly returned to New Orleans. He spent the rest of his career in the area
around greater New Orleans and the towns north of Lake Pontchartrain like Mandeville,
Louisiana, not venturing further from home than Baton Rouge and the Mississippi
Gulf Coast (?)
Jimmie Spheeris (34)
singer-songwriter, guitarist , pianoist, keyboards;
born in Phenix City, Alabama,
his father was murdered his mother moved
the family to Venice,
California. Jimmie again relocated to New York in the late 1960s to pursue his
songwriting career. His 1971 debut album, Isle of View, created a following and
FM radio airplay, most notably for the song 'I am the Mercury'. His 1973 album,
The Original Tap Dancing Kid, was followed by a period of extensive concert touring.
He returned to the recording studio in 1975 with The Dragon is Dancing and released
Ports of the Heart in 1976. Just
hours before his death, Jimmie
finished the self-titled album, Spheeris. This final album was not publicly released
for 16 years, it was released
on Rain Records
(at 2am, Jimmie died in Santa Monica, California, when his motorcycle collided
with a van; the van driver had been drinking) b.
November 5th 1949.
Flor Peeters (83) Flemish composer, organist
and teacher, born in the village of Tielen; he began his studies at the Lemmens
Institute in Leuven, he later collaborate with Jules van Nuffel and the Institute's
other professors, to produce the Nova Organi Harmonia. In 1923 he became an organ
teacher at the Institute; simultaneously he acquired the position of chief organist
at the St. Rumbold's Cathedral in Mechelen, which he held for most of the rest
of his life. He collaborated with the cantor at the cathedral Jules Van Nuffel.
As an organist and pedagogue, Peeters enjoyed great renown, giving concerts and
liturgical masterclasses all over the world. He also made recordings of sixteenth-,
seventeenth- and eighteenth-century organ music; some of these
have been reissued in recent years on compact disc. Most of his own pieces, he
wrote well over 100, were for his own instrument, for choir, or for both
July 4th 1903.
Joe Newman (69) American jazz trumpeter,
composer, and educator; born in New Orleans, Louisiana to a musical family, he
attended Alabama State College, where he joined the college band, the Bama State
Collegians, became its leader, and took it on tour. In
1941 he joined Lionel Hampton for two years, before signing with Count Basie.
He was also first with saxophonist Illinois Jacquet and then drummer J. C. Heard,
between 1947 and 1952. During his second period with Basie, which lasted for about
nine years, he made a number of small-group recordings as leader. He also played
on Benny Goodman's 1962 tour of the Soviet Union. In 1961 Joe left the Basie and
helped to found Jazz Interactions, of which he became president in 1967. Jazz
Interactions was a charitable organisation which provided an information service,
took jazz master classes into schools and colleges, and later maintained its own
Jazz Interaction Orchestra, for which Joe wrote. In the 1970s and 80s Joe toured
internationally, and recorded for various major record labels. He suffered a stroke
in 1991, which seriously disabled him (heart
problems) b. Sept 7th 1922.
1992: Astor Pantaleón Piazzolla (71)
Argentine tango composer and bandoneón
player born in Mar del Plata. Maybe the single most important figure in the history
of tango, his oeuvre revolutionized the traditional tango into a new style termed
nuevo tango, incorporating elements from jazz and classical music. Also an excellent
bandoneonist, he regularly performed his own compositions with different ensembles
1990 he suffered thrombosis while in Paris, and died two years later in Buenos
Aires.) b. March 11th 1921
2003: André Claveau (91) French
singer born in Paris, very popular in France from the 1940s-1960s. He
won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1958 singing "Dors, mon amour"/ Sleep
my love with music composed by Pierre Delanoë and lyrics by Hubert Giraud.
He has also appeared in over a dozen films (?)
December 17th 1915.
Barry White/Barry Eugene Carter (58) American
soul singer and record producer, a five-time Grammy Award-winner known for his
rich bass voice and romantic image. After leaving gang life and his teens behind
he embarked on a musical career, having marginal success at songwriting. His songs
were recorded by rock singer Bobby Fuller and TV bubblegum act The Banana Splits.
He was also responsible in 1963 for arranging "Harlem Shuffle" for Bob
& Earl, which became a hit in the UK in 1969. He had his first solo chart
hit with 1973's "I'm Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby". Then his
orchestra, Love Unlimited Orchestra's recording of White's composition "Love's
Theme" reached No.1 in 1974, one of only a handful of instrumental recordings
ever to do so. Some regard "Love's Theme" as the first disco hit ever,
although Nino Tempo's "Sister James" had already reached the Hot 100
a few months before. Other
chart hits by Barry include "Never, Never Gonna Give You Up", "Can't
Get Enough of Your Love, Babe", "You're the First, the Last, My Everything",
"What Am I Gonna Do with You", "Let the Music Play", "It's
Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me" and "Your Sweetness is My Weakness".
He also had a strong following in the UK where he had five
Top 10 hits and one No.1 with "You're The First". Barry
had many gold and platinum albums and singles, with combined sales of over 100
million (sadly Barry died from kidney failure)
b. September 12th 1944
2005: Al Downing (65) American
entertainer, singer, songwriter, and pianist. In 1978, Al's "Mr. Jones"
reached the Top 20, followed by "Touch Me (I'll Be Your Fool Once More)"
"Midnight Lace," and "I Ain't No Fool,".
He received the Billboard's New Artist of the Year and the Single of the Year
Award in 1979. In 1980, the "Story Behind
The Story" reached the Top 40 and "Bring It On Home" reached the
Top Twenty . He was inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame and was a frequent
performer at the Grand Ole Opry. Al was nominated as Best New Artist by the Academy
of Country Music and appeared on Hee Haw, Nashville Now, and Dick Clark's American
Bandstand television programs. He continued to perform on more than 75 occasions
per year in the remaining years of his life, and appeared at Ontario's prestigious
Havelock Country Jamboree with Kenny Rogers and Roy Clark. But sadly in 2005,
Al had to postpone his plans for a European tour due to his ill health (lymphoblastic
leukemia) b. January 9th 1940.
Johnny Frigo (90) American
jazz violinist and bassist
born in Chicago, Illinois, and studied violin for only three years beginning at
age 7. While in high school he started to play double bass in dance orchestras.
In 1942 he played with Chico Marx's orchestra
after which he toured with Jimmy Dorsey's band from 1945 to 1947, later forming
the Soft Winds trio with Dorsey's guitarist Herb Ellis and pianist Lou Carter.
During this time he wrote the music and words of the standard "Detour Ahead",
which has been recorded by Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughn, Ella Fitzgerald, Bill
Evans, and Carola among others. In
1951 Frigo returned to Chicago, primarily working as a studio bassist and arranger.
He also led the band at Mr. Kelly's, a popular Rush Street nightspot. Between
1951 and 1960 he played fiddle hoedowns and novelties with the Sage Riders, the
house band for WLS's long-running National Barn Dance. He continued playing with
the Sage Riders for another four years after WGN revived the show in 1961. He
continued performing at festivals worldwide, including the Umbria Jazz Festival
and North Sea Jazz Festival. Frigo also was a published poet and artist. (He
had been battling cancer, but sadly died of complications from a fall)
b. July 4th 2007.
Bill Pinkney (81)
American singer; born in Dalzell, South Carolina,
he grew up singing gospel in his church choir. He was also a pitcher for the Negro
league baseball's New York Blue Sox team, before serving in the US Army in World
War II. He earned a Presidential Citation with four Bronze
Stars (for battles including Normandy and Bastogne under General Patton). Returning
from the war, Bill began to sing again in various gospel choirs. It was there
that he would meet the members of the original Drifters. On their first record
in 1953, "Money Honey", Bill actually sang first tenor, changing to
bass after Ferbie left. In 1958 the manager fired all of the individual Drifters
and hired all >>> READ
MORE <<< (he
died the evening of July 4th in Florida from a heart attack, while staying at
the Daytona Beach Hilton. He was to perform
with The Drifters at the annual Daytona Beach 4th of July celebration, Red, White
& Boom) b.
August 15th 1925.
2007: Baris Akarsu (28)
Turkish rock singer; he started out as an entertainer in
beach resorts in Antalya. Later he moved to Karadeniz Eregli, singing in bars,
the local television and radio shows before joining the TV show Academy Turkey.
Shortly after winning the show, he moved to Istanbul to pursue a career in music.
Baris released his first album Islak Islak followed by his second
Dusmeden Bulutlarda Kosmam Gerek released in August 2006. He appeared
on music videos for his songs Islak Islak, Kimdir O, Mavi
and Amasra from his first and Vurdum En Dibe Kadar and
Yaz Demedim from his second album. He composed and wrote the lyrics
for Ben and Yeter Be from his second album. At the time
of his death, he was working on his unreleased third album (tragically
died due to complications arising from a motor the accident)
b. June 29th 1979.
Drake Levin/Drake Maxwell Levinshefski (62) American
musician, best known as the guitarist for Paul Revere & the Raiders. He started
with Paul Revere & the Raiders in 1963, even while he was in the National
Guard he would come to record with them in the studio. They had hits such as "Louie
Louie", "Steppin' Out", "Just Like Me", "Kicks"
which ranked No. 400 on the Rolling Stone magazine's list of The 500 Greatest
Songs of All Time in 1966, "Hungry" "The Great Airplane Strike",
"Good Thing" and "Him or Me - What's It Gonna Be?". Drake,
Phil Volk and Mike Smitty Smith left the Raiders in 1967 to form the
trio, The Brotherhood. Over the years Drake has worked with Ananda Shankar, Emitt
among other artists as well as participating in reunions with ex-members of the
b. August 17th 1946.
Robert Mitchell (96) American organist and one
of the last original silent film accompanists; born in Sierra Madre, California,
he started his career at the age of 12 when he worked at The Strand Theatre in
Pasadena, CA playing Christmas carols between showings. Once the silent film started,
his career as an accompanist began, which he continued until the arrival of talkies
which made accompanists irrelevant. In 1932 he won a scholarship to the Eastman
School of music where he studied piano. He stayed in New York performing gigs
of many genre that varied from church accompaniment to speakeasies to radio. During
the 1930s, he organized the Robert Mitchell Boys Choir, who were cast in many
films from the 1930s through to the 1960s. From 1962s he played the organ for
the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 70s and 80s saw him as musical director for several
churches: St. Ann, St. Brendan, St. Kevin and St. Peter in Los Angeles, and The
Church of the Good Shepherd in Beverly Hills. From 1992 until his death Robert
accompanied several silent films in revival houses particularly in California,
performing weekly at both The Orpheum and The Silent Movie Theatre, playing some
of the original scores he had from the 1920s. This gallant trooper performed until
May 2009, when he suffered from pneumonia and his health began to decline. In
his 84 year career Robert received many awards including the Silver Medal awarded
at the Royal Palace in Monte Carlo by Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace of
Monaco. A Silver Beaver Medal, the highest honor awarded scoutmasters by the Boy
Scouts of America. An acclamation as a Knight of Malta with a medal from the American
Melkite Archimandrate. An Honorary Plaque in the Amphitheater of Temple Ahavat
Shalom, Northridge, California. And the "Pro Papa et Ecclesia" Certificate
from Pope John-Paul the Second. (pneumonia)
b. October 12th 1912.
Allen Klein (77) American
businessman, agent, record label executive, admired and feared for his reputation
as a fierce negotiator. Born
in New Jersey, he spent much of his childhood in an orphanage and graduated from
college with a degree in accounting, after which, while working with friend, Don
Kirshner, he soon gained a reputation as an effective sleuth who could root through
record companies' books on behalf of artists and find thousands of dollars in
unpaid royalties. In 1961 he founded his company Abkco and he quickly worked his
magic for Bobby Darin and Sam Cooke as well as becoming Sam's manager. With the
"British Invasion" of the US, he was soon representing many UK artists
including The Animals, Herman's Hermits and The Rolling Stones. (Later when The
Verve's hit "Bittersweet Symphony" sampled an orchestration from The
Rolling Stones' "The Last Time," the rights to which are owned by Allen's
ABKCO Industries was nominated for a Grammy Award, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards
of the Rolling Stones were named as the nominees, rather then The Verve.) In 1969,
Allen began to work with the Beatles, and in 1971 he was a producer of the concerts
for Bangladesh, with Harrison, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and others. In the 80's
he bought the rights to music produced by Phil Spector, such as the Philles Records
and Phil Spector International catalogs. His company ABKCO Music & Records,
Inc. owns and/or administers the rights to music by Sam Cooke, The Rolling Stones,
The Animals, Herman's Hermits, Marianne Faithfull, The Kinks, as well as the Cameo
Parkway label, which includes recordings by such artists as Chubby Checker, Bobby
Rydell, The Orlons, The Dovells, Question Mark & The Mysterians, The Tymes
and Dee Dee Sharp. ABKCO also administers Philles Records and its master recordings,
including hits by The Righteous Brothers, The Ronettes, The Crystals and others.
Allen also worked as a producer on the films The Holy Mountain in 1973 and The
Greek Tycoon in 1978, as well as on several Italian spaghetti westerns (Alzheimer's
b. December 18th 1931.
2010: Huang You-di
(98) Taiwanese musician and composer.
He was responsible for around 2000 compositions, his most popular being Azaleas,
written during the Second Sino-Japanese War (sadly
died of multiple organ failure) b.
January 12th 1912.
2011: Jane Scott (92)
American rock music critic, in Cleveland, Ohio in
1919, a 1937 graduate of Lakewood High School and a 1941 graduate of the University
of Michigan, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, majoring in English,
Speech and Drama. Jane was influential rock critic for the newspaper The Plain
Dealer in Cleveland, during her career she covered every major rock concert in
Cleveland and was on a first name basis with many stars. Until her retirement
from the paper in April 2002 she was known as "The Worlds Oldest Rock
Critic." She was also influential in bringing the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
to Cleveland (?) b.
May 3rd 1919.
2011: Gerhard Unger (95)
German light tenor opera singer born in Bad Salzungen. He had his debut as an
opera singer in 1947 in Weimar. From 1949 to 1961 he sang with the Berlin State
Opera. After 1951 he sang regularly at the Bayreuth Festival. One of his signature
roles was David from Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, which is confirmed by
the number of times he recorded the role. Equally known was his Pedrillo in Mozart's
Die Entführung aus dem Serail, notably in the legendary 1965 Salzburg Festival
production, which was conducted by Zubin Mehta, and was kept in the festival's
repertory for 10 years and was also shown at Milan's La Scala. His other Salzburg
Festival roles included Monostatos in two different stagings of The Magic Flute.
He occasionally played Mime, for example in La Scala's 1975 production
b. November 26th 1916.
Bernadette "Bernie" Nolan (52) Irish singer,
actress and former lead vocalist of The Nolans; born
in Dublin but raised in Blackpool, England, she was the second youngest of siblings
Anne, Brian, Denise, Maureen, Tommy, Linda and Coleen Nolan. Before the Nolan
sisters became famous, Bernie and her sisters, parents and brothers performed
in smokey clubs and pubs in and around Blackpool. The family troupe performed
often until the early hours and would be woken up in the morning for school. In
1974 the five daughters began performing as The Nolan Sisters. After
guesting on Cliff Richard's TV show, they began regular appearances on variety
and comedy shows including Summertime Special, The Morecambe & Wise
Show and The Two Ronnies. In 1975 they supported Frank Sinatra >>>
MORE <<< (Bernie
died after a long brave with cancer;
in 2010 she was given the all clear after treatment for breast cancer, but last
year, 2012, she discovered it had spread to her brain, lungs, liver and bones)
b. October 17th 1960
2014: Hope Powell (90) American photographer, country
music album cover designer and songwriter; she was one of the first photographers,
male or female, to forge a freelance career shooting pictures of country stars.
in Salisbury, N.C., where she began her photography career,
her first photography encounter with show business was Hollywood blonde bombshell
Jayne Mansfield. She moved to Atlanta in 1968, where she was soon a familiar face
to artists such as Conway Twitty, Faron Young, Hank Williams Jr, Jim Ed Brown
and Loretta Lynn. This led to her move to Music City in 1970 and her
photographs became iconic images for such performers as Dolly Parton, Johnny Cash,
George Jones, Willie Nelson, Larry Gatlin, Donna Fargo, Charlie Rich, Alabama,
Tanya Tucker and hundreds of others. Among her most
memorable album covers are those for Dolly Partons LP Jolene and LP All
I Can Do, Twittys LP Classic Conway, Tom T. Halls album Places Ive
Done Time, Porter Wagoners album Porter, the 2004 Vern Gosdin collection
Back in the Swing of Things and the Willie Nelson/Hank Snow package Brand on My
Heart. Her work is featured in such Time-Life publications as Classic Country
in 2001 and Legends of Classic Country in 2000 (?)
b. September 14th 1923.
2014: Giorgio Faletti
(63) Italian author, actor, comedian and singer-songwriter,
born in Asti, Piedmont; during 70s, after graduating from law school, he began
his career as a comedian and also began his acting career at this time too. In
1988 he released a mini-album Colletti bianchi, the soundtrack of the TV series
of the same name in which he was one of the main actors. In 1991 he released his
second album, Disperato ma non serio, launched by the single Ulula, and he composed
the song "Traditore", included in his album Caterpillar. In 1992, he
performed, for the first time, at the Sanremo Music Festival with Orietta Berti
with the song "Rumba di Tango". Giorgio got success as a songwriter
with the songs such as "Signor Tenente", "The Show Must Go On",
"Gli anni che non hai" and many others.6+3
2014: Myer Fredman (82) British-Australian conductor
He studied at Dartington Hall and in London and was assistant conductor to Otto
Klemperer, Vittorio Gui, Sir John Pritchard and Sir Charles Mackerras. His world-premiere
recordings include Arnold Bax's 1st and 2nd symphonies and Havergal Brian's 6th
symphony, all with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, and Brian's 16th symphony
with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; and Peter Sculthorpe's Piano Concerto and
a television opera, Quiros. His other recordings include the music of Britten,
Delius, Vaughan Williams, Respighi, Rubbra, Sir Eugene Goossens, Arthur Benjamin,
Richard Meale, Robert Still, and Ross Edwards. He has orchestrated and arranged
instrumental and operatic music by J. S. Bach, John Dowland, Mozart, Donizetti,
Tchaikovsky, Puccini and Elgar. He later moved to Hobart, where he conducted and
taught as Adjunct Professor at the University of Tasmania's Conservatorium of
Music and he was also involved in creating The Tasmanian Discovery Orchestra.
(?) b. January 29th
William Hawkins (76) Canadian poet, songwriter and performer, born
in Ottawa, Ontario,and most notable for his contributions in the 1960s to Canadian
folk rock music and to Canadian poetry. His best known song is "Gnostic Serenade",
was originally recorded by 3's a Crowd. In 2015, Chaudière Books published
The Collected Poems of William Hawkins, edited and with a comprehensive introduction
by Cameron Anstee. Hawkins' last public performance was a reading from the collection,
on November 28, 2015, under the auspices of the Ottawa International Writers Festival.
(?) b. May 20th 1940.
1884: Victor Massé
composer; he studied at the Paris Conservatoire, winning the Prix de Rome in 1844
for his cantata Le rénégat de Tanger before turning his attention
to opera. While at the Conservatoire, Massé studied with Jaques Halévy.
He wrote some twenty operas, including La chanteuse voilée-1850, followed
by the more ambitious Galathée-1852 and Paul et Virginie. His best-known
and most successful work was the opéra comique Les noces de Jeannette in
1853. Victor's last work, Une Nuit de Cléopâtre, was performed posthumously
in April 1885 (?)
b. March 7th 1822.
1948: Carole Landis/Frances Lillian Mary Ridste (29)
American film and stage actress and singer, born in Fairchild,
Wisconsin. She was the youngest of five children,
two of whom died in childhood. Her early years were filled with poverty and sexual
abuse. In January 1934, at the age of 15 she married her 19-year-old neighbour,
Irving Wheeler, but the marriage was annulled in February 1934. That same year
she started out as a hula dancer in a San Francisco nightclub and later sang with
a dance band. Her 1937 film debut was as an extra in A Star Is Born; she also
appeared in various horse operas and posed for hundreds of cheesecake photographs.
She appeared in a string of successful films in the '40s, usually as the second
female lead. In a time when the singing of many actresses was dubbed in, Carole's
own voice was used in her musical roles. In 1942, she toured with comedienne Martha
Raye, dancer Mitzi Mayfair and actress Kay Francis with a USO troupe in England
and North Africa. Two years later, she entertained soldiers in the South Pacific
with Jack Benny. Carole traveled more than 100,000 miles during the war and spent
more time visiting troops than any other actress. In 1945 she starred on Broadway
in the musical A Lady Says Yes with Jacqueline Susann (Carole
was reportedly crushed when Rex Harrison refused to divorce his wife for her;
unable to cope any longer, tragically, she committed suicide in her Pacific Palisades
home. Her family have always questioned the events of her death and the coroner's
ruling of suicide) b.
January 1st 1919.
1951: Egbert Anson Van Alstyne (73)
American songwriter, pianist, and composer of a number of
popular and ragtime tunes from the early 20th century. Born
in Marengo, Illinois, he moved to New York City after some time touring in Vaudeville.
He worked as a Tin Pan Alley song-plugger until he was able to make his living
as a songwriter. He teamed with lyricist Harry H. Williams, their first success
was "Navajo" which was introduced in the Broadway musical Nancy Brown
in 1903 and became one of the first records by Billy Murray early in 1904. Their
best remembered song is ''In the Shade of the Old Apple Tree'' from 1905. Other
of his hits included "Won't You Come Over to My House?", "I'm Afraid
to Come Home in the Dark", and "Memories". He shares credit with
Tony Jackson on the hit "Pretty Baby" (?)
March 4th 1878.
1969: Wilhelm Backhaus (85) German pianist; born in
Leipzig, he studied at the conservatoire there with Alois Reckendorf until 1899.
He made his first concert tour at the age of sixteen. In 1905 he won the Anton
Rubinstein Competition and toured widely throughout his life - in 1921 he gave
seventeen concerts in Buenos Aires in less than three weeks. He made his U.S.
debut on January 5, 1912, as soloist in Beethoven's 5th Piano Concerto with Walter
Damrosch and the New York Symphony Orchestra. In 1930 he moved to Lugano and became
a citizen of Switzerland. He made his last
recital in Ossiach, which was recorded, a few days before his death
died in Villach, Austria where he was due to play in a concert)
1975: Gilda Dalla Rizza (72) Italian
prima donna soprano, born in Verona, she made her operatic
debut in Bologna (the Teatro Verdi) in 1912, as Charlotte in Werther. Especially
acclaimed in the verismo repertory, she was regarded as being Giacomo Puccini's
favorite soprano, creating Magda in his La rondine (1917). She also gave the first
European performances of his Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi, at Rome in 1919.
She also created roles in Pietro Mascagni's Il piccolo Marat and Riccardo Zandonai's
Giulietta e Romeo. She was also an important interpreter of that composer's Francesca
da Rimini. She also appeared at the Teatro Colón (including Manon Lescaut
opposite Aureliano Pertile) and Covent Garden, and was a favorite at Monte Carlo
and the Teatro alla Scala. One of Dalla Rizza's unexpected successes at the latter
theatre was in La traviata, under the bâton of Arturo Toscanini. Gilda also
taught formany years at Venice's Conservatorio Benedetto Marcello (sadly
died at Milan's Casa Verdi)
b. October 12th 1892.
Abe Tilmon (37) American
vocalist with Detroit Emeralds; "The Emeralds" formed as a vocal harmony
group in Little Rock, Arkansas, and originally composed of four brothers, Abrim/Abe,
Ivory, Cleophus and Raymond Tilmon. After Cleophus and Raymond left, Abe and Ivory
joined by childhood friend James Mitchell moved to Detroit, Michigan and expanded
their name to the Detroit Emeralds. The trio had their first R&B chart success
on Ric-Tic Records, with "Show Time" in 1968. Other hits included "If
I Lose Your Love", "Do Me Right", "You Want It, You Got It"
and "Baby Let Me Take You (In My Arms)" and "Feel
The Need In Me" (sadly
Abe died after suffering a heart attack)
b. January 12th
1983: Harry James (67) American
trumpet player and bandleader, born in Albany, Georgia; in February 1939 he debuted
his own big band in Philadelphia. His hit "You Made Me Love You" was
in the Top 10 during the week of December 7, 1941. He toured with the band into
the 1980s. His
was the first "name band" to employ vocalist Frank Sinatra, in 1939.
He wanted to change Sinatra's name to 'Frankie Satin' but Sinatra refused. His
later band included drummer Buddy Rich. He played trumpet in the 1950 film Young
Man with a Horn, dubbing Kirk Douglas. Harry's recording of "I'm Beginning
to See the Light" appears in the motion picture My Dog Skip-2000. His music
is also featured in the Woody Allen film Hannah and Her Sisters and recorded many
popular records and appeared in many Hollywood movies. Although diagnosed with
lymphatic cancer, but he continued to work, playing his last
professional job on June 26, 1983, in Los Angeles just 9 days before he died.
(sadly died after his brave battle with cancer)
1993: Maria Teresa de Noronha (74) Portuguese
fado singer; her artistic career spanned over 30 years and is considered one of
the most unique and beautiful fado voices. Born in Lisbon, and at the age of 20,
Maria was invited by the Portuguese broadcasting company to perform at a regular
biweekly fado program, which she did uninterruptly until 1961 (died of prolonged
disease at her house of São Pedro de Sintra) b. November
Mrs. Miller/Elva Ruby Connes Miller
(89) American singer, born in Joplin, Missouri,
she studied music, voice, and composition at Pomona College, and involved herself
in church and community projects. She said singing was "a hobby", but
produced several records, mainly of classical, gospel, and children's songs. She
found fame in the '60s for her out-of-tune versions of songs such as "Moon
River", "Monday, Monday", "Downtown", and "A Lover's
Concerto". She sang in an untrained, Mermanesque, vibrato-laden voice (?)
b. October 5th 1907.
2001: Ernie K Doe Jr (65) American
R&B singer and drummer, born in New Orleans; he recorded as a member of the
group the Blue Diamonds in 1954 before making his first solo recordings the following
year, "Mother-in-Law", which reached No.1 on both the Billboard pop
and R&B charts. Other hits include "Te-Ta-Te-Ta-Ta", and "Later
For Tomorrow". In the 1980s he did radio shows on New Orleans community stations
WWOZ and WTUL. In the 1990s he began billing himself as "The Emperor of the
Universe" and wearing a cape and crown he became a famous local eccentric
on the New Orleans scene (sadly died of kidney and liver
failure) b. February 22nd 1936.
2005: Shirley Goodman (69) American R&B
singer, born in New Orleans, known best as one half of Shirley and Lee, a 50s
R&B duo with her school friend, Leonard Lee. In 1956 they recorded "Let
the Good Times Roll", which became their biggest hit single reaching No.1
on the US R&B chart and No.20 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It sold over
a million copies, and awarded a gold disc. Later in her career, Shirley had a
resurgence with the disco hit, "Shame, Shame, Shame" in the 1970s. Credited
to Shirley & Company, the record became an international pop hit, reaching
No.12 on the Billboard chart and presaging the disco boom. (?)
b. June 19th 1936.
2005: Raymond "Ray" Davis (65) American
original bass singer and a founding members of The Parliaments, Parliament, and
Funkadelic born in Sumter, South Carolina. Aside from George Clinton, he was the
only original member of the Parliaments not to leave the Parliament/Funkadelic
conglomerate in 1977. He worked with Roger Troutman and Zapp in the early to mid
'80's. His distinctive baritone can be heard on "I Can Make You Dance".
He was also briefly in a late-period line-up of the The Temptations, after the
death of bass singer Melvin Franklin and appearing on the 1995 album For Lovers
Only. Ray left the group when diagnosed with throat cancer. In later years, he
performed with former Temptation Glenn Leonard's group, The Temptations Experience
and in 1998, with original Parliament-Funkadelic members Clarence "Fuzzy"
Haskins, Calvin Simon and Grady Thomas, formed the Original P. In 1997 Ray was
inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, with 15 other members of Parliament-Funkadelic
(respiratory problems) b. March
2006: Don Lusher (82)
British jazz trombonist and band leader born in Peterborough, England;
when World War II broke out he served as a gunner signaller in the Royal Artillery;
after being demobbed he became a professional musician playing with the bands
of Joe Daniels, Lou Preager, Maurice Winnick, The Squadronaires, Jack Parnell
and lastly Ted Heath. Don
spent nine years as lead trombone with the Ted Heath Jazz Band and toured the
USA several times, taking over as leader in 1969 after Heath's death. He also
led the trombone section on many of Frank Sinatra's European tours. He later formed
his own band and also performed with the Manhattan Sound Big Band, with Alexis
Korner and various session musicians in the big band-rock fusion group CCS .In
1993 he was awarded the status of Freeman of the City of London. In 2001 Don recorded
an album featuring Kenny Ball, Acker Bilk, John Chilton and the Feetwarmers, John
Dankworth, Humphrey Lyttelton and George Melly it was entitled British
Jazz Legends Together and in 2002 he received an OBE for services to the music
b. November 6th 1923.
Joe Weaver (71) American Detroit blues,
electric blues and R&B pianist, singer and bandleader. His best known recording
was "Baby I Love You So" - 1955, and he was a founding member of both
The Blue Note Orchestra and The Motor City Rhythm & Blues Pioneers. Over his
lengthy but staggered career, Joe worked with various musicians including The
Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, John Lee Hooker, Nathaniel Mayer, The Miracles, Martha
Reeves, Nolan Strong & The Diablos, Andre Williams, Nancy Wilson, and Stevie
Wonder. In addition, he was a session musician in the early days of Motown Records
and played in the house band at Fortune Records. He was a key component in the
1950s Detroit R&B scene (sadly died of a stroke)
b. August 27th 1934.
2007: Régine Crespin (80) French soprano,
later a mezzo-soprano, who had a major international career in opera and on the
concert stage between 1950 and 1989. She excelled in both the French and German
repertoire. She become a fixture at the Opéra National de Paris in the
mid 1950s. Her international career was launched in 1958 with a critically acclaimed
performance of Kundry in Richard Wagner's Parsifal at the Bayreuth Festival. She
soon appeared at most of the major opera houses in the United States and Europe
and made a number of appearances in South America as well. She had a long and
fruitful association with the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, making over
125 appearances at that house between 1962 and 1987. Regine retired from the stage
in 1989, after which she taught singing for many years at her alma mater, the
Conservatoire de Paris (sadly died after a brave fight with
liver cancer) b. February 23rd 1927.
George Heywood Melly (80)
English jazz and blues singer, writer, music critic; born in Liverpool, educated
at Stowe School, where he discovered his interest in art, jazz and blues. He joined
the Royal Navy near to the end of the World War 2, where he was almost court-martialled
for distributing anarchist literature. After the war while working in an Surrealism
art gallery he was offered the job as singer with the Mick Mulligan's Magnolia
Jazz Band. The 60s saw George a film critic for The Observer, the writer on the
Daily Mail's satirical newspaper strip Flook, illustrated by Trog, and scriptwriter
on the 1967 satirical film Smashing Time. The 70's, it's back to jazz with
MORE <<< (sadly
died from lung cancer) b. August
2010: Cesare Siepi (77)
Italian opera singer, generally considered to have been one of the finest basses
of the post-war period. His voice was characterised by a deep, warm timbre, and
a ringing, vibrant upper register. On stage, his tall, striking presence and elegance
of phrasing made him a natural Don Giovanni, among his many other worldwide roles.
He can be seen in that role on video from Salzburg, under the baton of Wilhelm
Furtwängler. Cesare's last studio recording was as
the old King Archibaldo in RCA's 1976 taping of Italo Montemezzi's L'amore dei
tre re, with Anna Moffo and Plácido Domingo in the cast, and his formal
farewell to the operatic stage occurred at the Teatro Carani in Sassuolo on 21
April 1989 (Sadly,
he died at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta after
suffering a stroke more than a week earlier) b. February
2010: David Fanshawe (68) English
composer and ethnomusicologist; educated at St George's School, Windsor Castle
and Stowe School he started his career as a musician and producer for documentary
films. He studied composition under John Lambert at the Royal College of Music.
His work is situated at the crossroads of traditional and modern music. David's
best-known composition is the 1972 choral work African Sanctus (sadly
died after suffering from a stroke) b. April
Alphonso 'Fonce' Mizell (68) American
born in Englewood, Bergen County, New Jersey. In 1972 he moved to LA with the
Motown company, along with Berry Gordy and Freddie Perren, he was one third of
the production house, a member of
"The Corporation", responsible
for writing and producing The Jackson 5's early hits, including 'I Want You Back',
'ABC' and 'The Love You Save'.
Fonce and his brother Larry also started their own company, Sky High Productions.
They went on to produce albums for Blue Note Records that set the tone for jazz
fusion, including: Donald Byrd's Black Byrd-1972, Street Lady-1973, Bobbi
Humphrey's Blacks and Blues-1973, Stepping
into Tomorrow-1974, Places and Spaces-1975 and Caricatures-1976, Satin Doll-1974
and Fancy Dancer-1975, Johnny "Hammond" Smith's Gambler's Life-1974,
Gears-1975, A Taste Of Honey's platinum selling roller-rink anthem of '78 "Boogie
Oogie Oogie", L.T.D.'s "Love Ballad", a number 1 R&B hit in
1976 and Mary Wells' dance funk 12-inch "Gigolo" in 1982. The
Mizell Brothers often used the same musicians on their albums, including Harvey
Mason on drums, Melvin "Wah Wah Watson" Ragin and David T. Walker on
guitar, Chuck Rainey on bass and Jerry Peters on piano. In the 1980s, the Mizell
brothers retired from full-time production in the 1980s but made reappearances
in the 2000s, notably with 4Hero (?)
b. January 15th 1943.
2012: Ben Kynard (92)
American jazz saxophone player and songwriter
born in Eureka Springs, Ark.; his life as a musician started at a young age, and
by the time he graduated from Sumner High School in Kansas City, Kan., in 1938
he was already performing in nightclubs. After
a stint in the U.S. Army, where he played with a military band, Ben
played with Lionel Hampton from 1946 to 1953, which took him to gigs across America.
After years on the road left Lional and worked for the U.S. Postal Service in
Kansas City for 32 years, delivering mail in the day and playing jazz at night.
He also frequently wrote music for local jazz musicians, typically without charging
them. One of his more famous compositions is the standard Red Top
(sadly Ben died of complications
from a stroke that he had in late June) b. February 28th 1920.
2013: Bipul Bhattacharya (58) Bangladeshi singer;
he led choruses of a huge number of songs that boosted the spirit of the freedom
fighters of the Liberation War. Such songs include: Nao Chhariya Dey Paal
Uraiya Dey, Shonen Shonen Bhai Shobey Satyo E Je Ghotona, Bolo
Bolo Rey Bolo Shobey Bolo Rey Bangalir Joy, Ei Na Bangladasher Gaan
Gaitey Rey Amar Dukkhey Poran Kandey, O Rey Bishom Doirar Dheu
and many more. Bipul won the first place in folk music category in all Pakistan
Music Competition in 1970. Later, he led a musical organisation called Mallika
Sangeet Shamaroho (sadly
he died of cancer)
2014: Sharifah Aini (61)
Malaysian traditional and pop singer, who grew up in the Kampung Melayu Majidee,
Johor Bahru and became known as Biduanita Negara or "National Songstress"
and also Kak Pah. Over her long career,
she released around 83 albums
between 1970 and 2006. As a tribute, her name has
been immortalized in the Malaysian Book of Records for her sense of giving back
to a country that has been brought up to international standards
Sharifah died from complications from lung fibrosis)
b. July 2nd 1953
2014: William Gugi Waaka (76)
New Zealand Maori guitarist and singer; he was a member
of the Quin Tikis, the Maori Volcanics and other bands in a career that started
in the dance halls of Auckland in the early 1960s and took him to Australia and
beyond. (sadly died with heart problems) b.
Charanjit Singh (75) Indian
musician, Bollywood composer, pioneer, and a man intreged by sound, born
in Bombay; a one-time session musician who played with R D Burman, Shankar Jaikishen
and many others, who had not only mastered the guitar but was also an early advocate
of the synthesizer. However,
more recently it has been discovered by international
music lovers and the media that he was the man who had fused different sounds
and created "acid house" music, a sub-genre of "house" music
developed in the 1980s in Chicago.
He gained attention for his 1982 release Synthesizing: Ten Ragas to a Disco Beat,
an album originally intended as a fusion of electronic disco music with Indian
classical ragas. His use of both the TR-808 drum machine and TB-303 bass synthesizer
have recently led some journalists to suggest that it is the earliest example
of acid house music; predating Phuture's seminal Chicago acid house record "Acid
Tracks" in 1987 by five years. The first track "Raga Bhairavi"
also features a synthesised voice that says "Om Namah Shivaya" through
a vocoder. From 2012 until his death, Charanjit performed the material from "Ten
Ragas to a Disco Beat" live (?)
Gladys Nordenstrom (92) American composer born in Mora, Minnesota.
She studied music at the Institute of Fine Arts at Hamline University in Saint
Paul, Minnesota, where she received bachelor's and master's degrees. In 1952 she
married Austrian composer Ernst Krenek who she accompanied to visiting professorships
in various locations and sometimes collaborated on works. After his death in 1991,
she founded the Ernst Krenek Institute in 1998 and the private foundation Krems
die Ernst Krenek in 2004 in Vienna, Austria. In 2006 Gladys was awarded the Decoration
of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria. (?) b.
May 23rd 1924.
1961: Rocco Scott LaFaro (25) American
influential jazz bassist, born in Irvington, New Jersey, and perhaps best known
for his work with the Bill Evans Trio. He entered college to study music but left
during the early weeks of his sophomore year, to joined Buddy Morrow and his big
band, before relocating to Los Angeles. He quickly found work and became known
as one of the best of the young bassists. In 1959, after many gigs with such greats
as Chet Baker, Victor Feldman, Stan Kenton, Cal Tjader, and Benny Goodman, Rocco
joined Bill Evans. His tragic death came two days after accompanying Stan Getz
at the Newport Jazz Festival and ten days after recording two live albums with
the Bill Evans Trio, Sunday at the Village Vanguard and Waltz for Debby, albums
considered among the finest live jazz recordings (died
in an automobile accident in Flint, New York on U.S. 20 between Geneva and Canandaigua)
b. April 3rd 1936
Armstrong (69) American bandleader, singer
and trumpet player, born in New Orleans, LA. He was a very charismatic innovative
performer whose musical skills and bright personality transformed jazz from a
rough regional dance music into a popular art form. One of the most famous jazz
musicians of the 20th century. He worked odd jobs as a boy, including delivering
milk and coal and selling newspapers and bananas. He also played the cornet with
various bands in the New Orleans area. From 1922-24
Louis played with King Oliver's Original Creole
Jazz Band. Next he played trumpet with Fletcher Henderson in New York City, before
he played solo trumpet and fronted his own bands until his death, including the
Hot Five and the Hot Seven. recording artist beginning in the early 1920s. Appeared
in Broadway shows, including "Hot Chocolates" and "Swingin' the
Dream". He also appeared in many films, including Pennies from Heaven 1936;
Every Day's a Holiday, 1937; Going Places 1938; Dr. Rhythm 1938; Cabin in the
Sky 1943; Jam Session 1944; New Orleans 1947; The Strip 1951; Glory Alley 1952;
The Glenn Miller Story 1954; High Society 1957; The Five Pennies 1959; A Man Called
Adam 1966; and Hello, Dolly 1969. Louis's nickname Satchmo was an abbreviation
of "satchelmouth," a joke on the size of his mouth; he was also nicknamed
Gatemouth, Dippermouth, Dip, and simply Pops. He was inducted
into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as an "early influence" in 1990
and in 2001 the city of New Orleans renamed its airport as Louis Armstrong International
Airport (sadly died of a heart attack)
b. August 4th 1901.
Pártos (70) Hungarian-Israeli violist,
composer and recipient of the Israel Prize in 1954. He taught and served as director
of the Rubin Academy of Music in Tel Aviv and regarded as among the most important
Israeli composers. Between the years 19381956, Ödön
was the principal of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra's viola section, as well
as playing numerous solo performances in Israel and abroad. In 1946, together
with cellist László Vincze, he founded the Samuel Rubin Israel Academy
of Music, now Buchmann-Mehta School of Music in Tel Aviv, and in 1959 was instrumental
in founding the Thelma Yellin High School of Art in Tel Aviv. In 1951, Partos
was appointed director of the Rubin Academy, a position he was to hold until his
death, although the state of his health during his last five years of life prevented
him from taking an active part in the Academy's administration, a position filled
by Prof. Arie Vardi who succeeded him as director there (?)
b. October 1st 1907.
1979: Van Allen
Clinton McCoy (39) American musician,
music producer, arranger, songwriter, and orchestra conductor. Born in Washington,
D.C., he learned to play piano at a young age and sang with the Metropolitan Baptist
Church choir as a youngster. By age 12, he had begun writing his own songs in
addition to performing in local amateur shows alongside his older brother, Norman
Jr. The two brothers formed a doo-wop combo named the Starlighters with two friends
while in high school. He is best known for his 1975 international hit "The
Hustle", which is still played in dance halls and on the radio today. He
has approximately 700 song copyrights to his credit and is also noted for producing
songs for such recording artists as Gladys Knight and the Pips, The Stylistics,
Aretha Franklin, Brenda & The Tabulations, David Ruffin,
Peaches & Herb, and Stacy Lattishaw (sadly died of a
massive heart attack)
b. January 6th 1940.
Roy Rogers/Leonard Slye (86)
American actor and country singer; he and his
3rd wife Dale Evans, his "golden palomino" Trigger and German shepherd,
Bullet, were featured in over 100 movies and The Roy Rogers Show which ran on
radio for nine years before moving to television from 1951 through 1964. After
moving to LA in 1929/30 he started out with his cousin singing the LA bars as
the Slye Brothers. After four years of little success,
in 1934, he formed
a Western cowboy music group, Sons of the
Pioneers with Bob Nolan and Tim Spencer. The group hit it big with songs like
"Cool Water" and "Tumbling Tumbleweeds". From his first film
appearance in 1935, he worked steadily in western films, including a supporting
role as a singing cowboy, still billed as "Leonard Slye" in a Gene Autry
movie. In 1938, when Autry temporarily walked out on his movie contract, Leonard
was immediately rechristened "Roy Rogers" and assigned the lead in Under
Western Stars. Roy became a matinee idol and American legend, also a competitor
for Gene Autry as the nation's favorite singing cowboy was born! (congestive
heart failure) b.
November 5th 1911.
Michael Wallace (43) Jamaican keyboard
player and original member of the seminal Jamaican 80s band Chalice with hits
such as "I Still Love You" and "Good To Be There". He had
also been a member of the band Third World (tragically gunned
down while drivng his car in Kingston, Jamaica) b.
June 6th 1956.
composer of classical music and virtuoso pianist; despite being nearly blind from
an early age, he achieved great success. His music counts among some of the most
popular of the 20th century, particularly his Concierto de Aranjuez, considered
one of the pinnacles of the Spanish music and guitar concerto repertoire. In 1943
he received Spain's National Prize for Orchestra for Cinco piezas infantiles/Five
Children's Pieces, based on his earlier composition of the same piece for two
pianos, premiered by Ricardo Viñes. From 1947 Rodrigo was a professor of
music history, holding the Manuel de Falla Chair of Music in the Faculty of Philosophy
and Letters, at Complutense University of Madrid. In
1991, he was raised to the nobility by King Juan Carlos; he was given the title
Marqués de los Jardines de Aranjuez, in 1996 he received the prestigious
Prince of Asturias AwardSpain's highest civilian honor, and he was named
Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government in 1998 (?)
b. November 22nd 1901.
piano in Warsaw and Berlin in the early 1930s. After Adolf Hitler seized power
in Germany in 1933, he returned to Warsaw, where he quickly became a celebrated
pianist and composer of both classical and popular music. He composed many pieces
and soundtracks while touring Poland with his violinist, Bronislav Gimpel. His
family was deported to Treblinka, an extermination camp in the east, but
managed to flee from the transport loading site with the help of a friend. Tragically
none of his family members survived the war apart from himself. From 1945 to 1963
he was director of the Music Department at Polish Radio. Over his career he composed
several symphonic works and about 500 songs, still popular in Poland today, as
well as music for children, radio plays and films. In 1961 he initiated and organized
the Sopot International Song Festival in Poland and founded the Polish Union of
Authors of Popular Music. Shortly after the war ended he wrote a memoir about
his survival in Warsaw. He published the book, Smierc Miasta (Death of a City),
it was soon suppressed by the Stalinist Polish authorities. Following the de-Stalinisation
period of the 1950s, the book was published and printed to a greater extent. In
son Andrzej republished his fathers work, first in German as Das wunderbare
Überleben (The miraculous survival) and then in English as The Pianist. In
2002, Roman Polanski directed a screen version, also called The Pianist, but sadly
died before the film was completed. The movie won three Academy Awards, the British
Academy of Film and Television Arts Best Film Award, and the Palme d'Or at the
Cannes Film Festival. (died
in Warsaw) b. December 5th 1911.
Jimmie Lee Robertson (71) American
blues singer and guitarist, from the generation of blues performers who helped
establish Maxwell Street in Chicago as a famous blues locale. He
recorded with musicians like Magic Sam and Jimmy Reed, made records as a leader,
and took part in the American Folk Blues Festival package tour of the US and Europe
He took a succession of days jobs in the 1970s and 1980s, but returned to recording
in the 1990s, and made several albums for the Delmark, Amina and Apo labels. He
led a protest against the proposed redevlopment of the historic Maxwell Street
area and Chicago's blues heritage in the late 1990s, including two lengthy hunger
strikes. In 1998 he embarked upon the first of two long hunger strikes in protest.
(He had been been diagnosed with bone cancer, and was later
found dead with an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound)
b. April 30th 1931.
2003: Clyde "Skip" Battin (69)
American bassist and songwriter born in Gallipolis, Ohio; in 1956 he collaborated
with Gary Paxton and formed the Pledges, the two later successfully recorded under
the name of Skip & Flip, enjoying hits with "It Was I", and "Cherry
Pie". From 1970
Skip was bass player and songwriter
with the Byrds. From
1974 to 1976 he played with the New Riders
of the Purple Sage, with whom he recorded three albums. He continued to play live
and recorded collaborations with notable country rock musicians, numerous solo
projects and stints with the Flying Burrito Brothers. From 1989 to 1991 he toured
occasionally with Michael Clarke's Byrds. (Alzheimer's
disease) b. February 18th 1934.
2004: Syreeta Wright (57) US
Grammy nominated singer-songwriter, most notably known for her work with Stevie
Wonder and Billy Preston. She began recording career
with Motown as a backing vocalist during the 60s, releasing her own single "I
Can't Give Back the Love I Feel for You" in 1967. Following a suggestion
by Stevie Wonder, she became a songwriter. One
early success between the two was the song 'It's A Shame' for the, then, Motown
Spinners. By 1970, the collaboration with Stevie saw the release of the song 'Signed,
Sealed Delivered, I'm Yours', a song she co-wrote with Wonder, Lee Garrett and
Lula Hardaway. That same year, she collaborated with Stevie on his album 'Where
I'm Coming From', co-writing the songs 'Do Yourself A Favor', 'Something Out Of
The Blue', 'If You Really Love Me' (a song on which she sang) and 'Never Dreamed
You'd Leave In Summer'. Stevie and Syreeta married on the 14th September 1970.
In 1972, Syreeta released her debut album, simply entitled 'Syreeta' for the MoWest
imprint, the first of 10 solo albums. Syreeta wrote, or recorded with Sheree Brown,
George Howard, Gary Bartz, Patrice Rushen, Wayne Henderson, Jeffrey Osborne, The
Stairsteps, George Duke, Quincy Jones and Donald Byrd, amongst many others, at
various times. (sadly
died after her long battle with breast cancer) b.
August 3rd 1946.
2005: Dennis D'Ell/Denis James Dalziel (61)
singer and harmonica player
born in London.
He was a founding member and lead singer of the British pop band The Honeycombs
formed in 1963. There debut single "Have I the Right?" was released
in June 1964 on the Pye record label, by the end of August the record reached
No.1 in the UK charts. Outside the UK "Have I the Right?" was a big
success too. The song became No.1 in Australia, Canada and Sweden,
the US and in the Netherlands No.2. The Honeycombs also recorded a German version
of the song: "Hab ich das Recht?" and both versions reached No.21 in
the German charts. The group toured Europe, The Far East, Japan and Australia.
Other hits included "Who Is Sylvia?", "Is It Because", "Eyes",
"That's the Way" and others (sadly he lost his
battle with cancer) b.
October 14th 1943.
Bobby Durham (71) American jazz drummer
born in in Philadelphia; he started with The Orioles at age 16, and went on to
play with King James, Stan Hunter, Lloyd Price, Wild Bill Davis, Lionel Hampton,
Count Basie, Slide Hampton, Grant Green, Sweets Edison, Tommy Flanagan, Frank
Sinatra, James Brown, Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye, Jimmy Rowles, Oscar Peterson,
the Duke Ellington Orchestra, in which he played for five years, and accompanied
Ella Fitzgerald for more than a decade (?)
b. Feb 3rd 1937
Jim Reid (75) Scottish folk singer, guitarist
and mouth organist; born in Dundee, Jim started out in the with
"The Taysiders", after which he
became the driving force of the
Arbroath band "The Foundry Bar Band".
He recorded 3 albums with them, 'The Foundry Bar Band' in 1981, 'On The Road with
The Foundry Bar Band' in 1983 and in 1988 'Rolling Home'. Jim has featured on
many other artists recordings including the 9th to 12th volumes of the twelve
volume series of "The Complete Songs of Robert Burns", John Huband's
"Freewheeling Now" and the Hamish Henderson tribute album "A The
Bairns O Adam" and "Life In The Kingdom", the latter was with the
children of Fife primary schools. In 2005 he won the "Scots Singer of the
Year" award and he regularly played at festivals until recently when he was
diagnosed with dementia (died after short illness)
Martin Streek (43) Canadian influencial
radio DJ known for his work on CFNY-FM (Edge 102) in Toronto, Ontario. Born
in the Meadowvale part of Mississauga, he was one of three remaining personalities
from the "Spirit of Radio" era of the Edge. He was known for his deep,
gravelly voice, his phrase
"Come out early and stay late" and
weekend late night live-to-air broadcasts from the Toronto clubs,
mainly the Phoenix Concert Theatre and the Velvet Underground in Toronto, and
The Kingdom in Burlington, Ont. when it was in existence. For a time, Martin also
hosted a Friday Night Live show from the Docks. He
was also known for his weekly show, the Thursday 30, where he counted down the
top 30 songs of the past week, as well as championing five emerging acts in a
segment called Groundbreakers. Martin was voted DJ of the year a number of times
in Now Magazine's year-end public ballot. Despite his knowledge and his great
importance to the music scene over the decades, in late May 2009 sadly he seemed
to have been axed by CFNY-FM
from the station's website, along with a few others as part of restructuring at
the station. Martin's last status update on Facebook was, "So...I guess that's
it...thanks everyone...I'm sorry to those I should be sorry to, I love you to
those that I love, and I will see you all again soon (not too soon though)...
Let the stories begin." (suspected suicide)
b. June 16th 1964.
Abdullah Totong Mahmud (80) Indonesian
composer and television host, a composer of around 500 children's songs from Indonesia.
Some of his best known works include "Pelangi", "Ambilkan Bulan",
"Anak Gembala", "Bintang Kejora", "Mendaki Gunung",
"Ade Irma Suryani", and "Amelia". Abdullah
was the host of two children song's shows on TVRI, "Lagu Pilihanku"/Songs
of My Choice from 1968 to 88, and "Ayo Menyanyi"/Lets Sing from
1969 to 1988. He was honoured with the 2003 AMI Lifetime Achievement Award. The
Indonesian government awarded him the Bintang Budaya Parama Dharma medal in 2003
(pneumonia) b. February 3rd
Romanian pan flautist, born in Bucharest, who
later lived and worked in Switzerland.
He started studying violin, but from the age of 14, Simion
increasingly concentrated on playing
the pan pipes. He chose his stage name, which not only signifies the nymph Syrinx
in ancient Greek mythology, but also the Pan flute itself. The range of Stanciu's
repertoire included Baroque and Classical instrumental concerts - Vivaldi, Bach,
Mozart etc. adapted for the Pan flute, collaborations with Rock music artists
like The Moody Blues or Yes, as well as recordings in the fields of Jazz and light
music. He also performed the soundtrack recording for the film Quest for Fire.
Simion founded the Pan flute school Akademie Syrinx (died
in Geneva, Switzerland, after a protracted illness) b.
December 23rd 1949
2010: Harvey Fuqua (80)
American singer, songwriter, producer and
record label executive; born in Louisville, Kentucky, where he started a vocal
group called the Crazy Sounds. Later, the group with Harvey as lead singer, along
with Bobby Lester, Alexander "Pete" Graves, Prentiss Barnes, plus Billy
Johnson on guitar moved to Cleveland, where an impressed R & R DJ Alan Freed,
invited them on his radio show and concerts, then in 1952, changing their name
to The Moonglows Alan signed them to his Champagne Records label. The Moonglows
eventually signed to >>> READ
MORE <<< (sadly
died from a heart attack) b. July 27th 1929.
2011: Josef Suk (81) Czech
violinist, violist, chamber musician and conductor, the grandson of Josef Suk,
and great-grandson of Antonín Dvorák. In his home country he carried
the title of National Artist. He became a distinguished violist, having recorded
Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra as violist with
Iona Brown and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields.
He had a long and distinguished career in the recording
studio, winning the Grand Prix du Disque six times: including in 1960 for recordings
of Leo Janácek and Claude Debussy violin sonatas, and in 1968 for
the Alban Berg violin concerto. He also won the Wiener Floetenuhr Prize and the
Edison Prize (sadly Josef
died fighting prostate cancer) b. August 8th 1929
2014: Castro De Destroyer/Theophilus Tagoe (32)
musician, a musical style which fuses highlife and hip hop.
Born in Takoradi, Western Region, he
attended Anglican Primary and J.S.S, and he featured on hip-life group 4×4
hit track, sikletele which officially introduced him into the local
music scene. In 2003, he released
his debut album Sradenam, which became an instant hit in Ghana; this
was followed by his second album Toffee. Castro later formed the group
Cashface along with Shiloh and Screw Face,
they had many hits including Omega. Over his career he worked with
other musicians such as Tinny, Sarkodie, Buk
Bak, Mzbel, Abrewa Nana, Pope Skinny, Dasebre
Dwamena, just to mention a few. His latest collaborations include Adonai remix
- Sarkodie ft Castro, Personal Person - D Black ft Castro, Ma Yentena - Dada Hafco
ft Castro, Odo Bekumi - Funny Face ft Castro & Samira, and Odo Pa - Castro
ft Asamoah Gyan & Kofi Kinaata. (while
staying at the Aqua Safari
Resort in Ada with friends, tragically, Casto drowned when he dived into the lake
in an attempt to save the life of Janet Bandu, believed to be his girlfriend)
Kathy Stobart (89) British jazz saxophonist
born in South Shields, and first learned piano as a child. After picking up saxophone,
she first played locally in Newcastle and then in London in the 1940s with Denis
Rose, Ted Heath and Jimmy Skidmore. Later that decade she played with Art Pepper
and Peanuts Hucko. She played with pianist Art Thompson in the late 1940s. She
toured with Vic Lewis in 1949 and led her own group in 1950-51. In the 1950s and
1960s she went into semiretirement to raise her family. Then from 1969 to 1977
she played with the jazz icon Humphrey Lyttelton. Following this she led her own
groups, with Harry Beckett, John Bunch, and Lennie Best, among others. Over her
long career she also played with Johnny Griffin, Al Haig, Earl Hines, Buddy Tate,
Zoot Sims, Marian McPartland, and Dick Hyman (?)
b. April 1st 1925.
Kathy Stobert died on July 6th, NOT July 5th as many sources report. This is confirmed
by her youngest son, Peter Courtley.
Masabumi Kikuchi aka Poo Sun (75) Japanese jazz
pianist and composer; born in Tokyo, he studied music at the Tokyo Art College
High School. After graduating, he joined Lionel Hampton's Japanese touring band.
He became known for his broad and diverse range of music from vanguard classical
to fusion and digital music and worked with a large number of musicians, including
Sonny Rollins, Woody Herman, Mal Waldron, Miles
Davis, McCoy Tyner, Joe Henderson, Elvin Jones,
Paul Motian, Terumasa Hino, Helen Merrill, Tethered Moon, Pee Wee Ellis, Billy
Harper and Hannibal Peterson.
(sadly died from subdural hematoma) b. October 19th
2015: Julio Angel/Julio Manuel Acevedo
Lanuza (69) Puerto Rican rock, pop and bolero
singer, born in Bayamón; in his teens he formed a band which he and his
friends named "Julito and the Latin Lads". During the 1960s, he made
his television debut at Puerto Rico's WAPA-TV canal 4 television channel, with
his group, on Myrta Silva's show, singing "Una Hora Contigo"/"One
Hour With You", which lead him to become a new teen idol of Puerto Rico.
He had many hits in the 60s, 70s and 80s and continued his singing career into
the 2000s. (sadly died fighting multiple myeloma)
b.December 23rd 1945.
2015: Lil' Bob/Camille
Bob (77) American
R&B singer, drummer and bandleader, born in Arnaudville, Louisiana. He started
his music career in the mid-1950s as drummer in a band led by the unrelated Good
Rockin' Bob, but he soon formed his own dance band, The Lollipops, and first recorded
in 1957. He and his band became best known for their 1965 single "I Got Loaded"
and the 1966 album Nobody But You. Many of their 1960s recordings have remained
popular on the Northern soul circuit in Britain. Lil' Bob was still active as
a performer in Louisiana in the mid to late 2000s
(sadly he died from cancer) b. November
Danny Smythe (67) American drummer and founding member of The Box Tops,
a Memphis band which started out in 1963 as "The Devilles". They won
a weekly "Battle of the Bands" contest at Memphis's T. Walker Lewis
YMCA, before changing their name to "Box Tops" to prevent confusion
with a New York band with the name "The Devilles". They recorded "The
Letter", though under two minutes in length, it was an international hit
by September 1967, reaching Billboard's No.1 position and remaining there for
four weeks. The band followed up with "Neon Rainbow", after which Danny
returned to school. He studied art after leaving the music industry and painted
murals in restaurants and hotel lobbies and spent decades as a freelance illustrator
for advertising agencies. He
returned to a reunited Box Tops in 1996 and two years later they released Tear
Off!, whose cover was designed by Danny. They continued to tour until Alex Chiltons
death in 2010. (?) b. August
Bunk Johnson (?) American
jazz trumpeter, a prominent early New Orleans jazz trumpet player in the early
years of the 20th century who enjoyed a revived career in the 1940s.
gave the year of his birth as 1879, although there is speculation that he may
have actually been younger by as much as a decade. He received lessons from Adam
Olivier and played in Olivier's orchestra. Bunk began in Papa Jack Laines band,
along with Buddy Bolan and played a few adolescent jobs with Buddy Bolden, but
was not a regular member of Bolden's Band for any length of time. He was regarded
as one of the top trumpeters in New Orleans in the years 19051915, in between
repeatedly leaving the city to tour with minstrel shows and circus bands. After
he failed to appear for a New Orleans Mardi Gras parade job in 1915, he learned
the krewe members intended to do him bodily harm, and so he left town, touring
with shows and then settling in New Iberia, Louisiana. In 1931 he lost his trumpet
and front teeth when a violent fight broke out at a dance in Rayne, Louisiana,
putting an end to his playing. Eventually Bunk was fitted with a set of dentures
and given a new trumpet, and in 1942 made his first solo recordings with his band.
These recordings propelled him into public attention, attracting a cult following.
Bunk and his band played in New Orleans, San Francisco, Boston, and New York City
and made many more recordings (sadly
Bunk died a year after suffering a bad stroke)
1879 or 1889.
1950: Theodore "Fats" Navarro (26) American
jazz trumpet player, born in Key West, Florida; he was a pioneer of the bebop
style of jazz improvisation in the 1940s. He had a strong stylistic influence
on many other players, most notably Clifford Brown.
began playing piano at age six, and began playing trumpet at thirteen. After life
on the road with many bands he settled in New York City in 1946, where he met
and played with Charlie Parker, alsthough never a member of his bands. Fats played
in the Andy Kirk, Billy Eckstine, Benny Goodman, and Lionel Hampton big bands,
and participated in small group recording sessions with Kenny Clarke, Tadd Dameron,
Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Coleman Hawkins, Illinois Jacquet, Howard McGhee,
and Bud Powell. His last performance was with Charlie Parker on July 1st at Birdland
b. September 24th 1923.
1954: Idabelle Smith Firestone (79)
American composer and songwriter, born
in Jackson, Michigan; she was educated at Alma College, Ontario. She joined the
ASCAP in 1948 and her compositions include "If I Could Tell You" used
as the theme of "Voice of Firestone" programs, "In My Garden",
"You Are the Song in My Heart", "Do You Recall?", "Melody
of Love" and "Bluebirds" (?)
b. November 10th 1874.
Miranda Araújo Neto (32)
Brazilian composer and singer, born in Rio de Janeiro.
He started his career with the rock band Barão Vermelho
in 1980, their greatest success was "Bete
Balanço". In 1985, Cazuza took part in Rock in Rio with Barão
Vermelho, and around this time, Caetano Veloso claimed he was the greatest Brazilian
poet of his generation. 1985 also saw him pursue his solo career, Cazuza's music
began to diversify, incorporating elements of the blues in songs such as "Blues
da Piedade"/Blues of Compassion, "Só as mães são
felizes"/Only Mothers Are Happy and "Balada da Esplanada"/Ballad
of the Esplanade, which was based on a poem of the same name by Oswald de Andrade;
showcasing increasingly intimate lyrics, like those in "Só se for
a Dois" /Only If It Will Be as a Couple, as well as opening itself up to
influences from Brazilian pop music with interpretations of Cartola's "O
Mundo é um Moinho", Raul Seixas's "Cavalos Calados"/Silent
Horses and Caetano Veloso's "Esse Cara"/This Guy (sadly
died from an AIDS related illness) b.
April 4th 1958.
Zapata (27) American
singer, lead singer for the Seattle punk rock band The Gits. Highly influential
in the Seattle, Washington music scene, she was considered a dynamic live performer
and a uniquely gifted lyricist and painter. In 1992, the band released its debut
album "Frenching the Bully" (Mia was brutally
raped and murdered; A streetwalker found her beaten and mutilated body posed in
a Christ-like fashion under a streetlight in a park. Florida fisherman Jesus Mezquia
was sentenced to 36 years for the crimes) b. August
Mrs Miller/Elva Ruby Connes (89)
singer born in Joplin, Missouri; her whistling, which
was equally as wobbly as her voice was apparently preceded by Mrs. Miller filling
her mouth with ice to better control the pitch, also featured on a number of her
records. She gained fame in the 1960s for her out-of-tune versions of songs such
as "Moon River", "Monday, Monday", "A Lover's Concerto",
and "Downtown". She sang in an untrained, Mermanesque, vibrato-laden
voice (?) b. October 5th 1907.
Fred Neil (65) American
singer, guitarist, songwriter; one of the most compelling folk-rockers to emerge
from Greenwich Village in the mid '60s. Born in Cleveland, and raised in St. Petersburg,
Florida, Fred was one of the singer-songwriters who worked out of New York City's
Brill Building. He is often called a pioneer of the folk rock, his most prominent
musical descendants being Tim Buckley, Stephen Stills, David Crosby and Joni Mitchell.
Also in the 1960s and early 1970s, he wrote hits such as "Candy Man"
and "Everybody's Talkin'" as well as the ballad "A Little Bit Of
Rain" and the rock standard "The Other Side of This Life", most
famously recorded by Jefferson Airplane.
He left the music industry
in the 70s. (sadly died
of cancer) b. March
2003: Izhak Graziani (79) Bulgarian-born
conductor born in Bulgaria and studied music and conducting.
In 1948 he moved to Israel where he became the conductor of the IDF Orchestra.
He eventually became conductor of the IBA Radio Orchestra, eventually renamed
IBA Radio and TV Orchestra (?)
b. August 4th 1924.
Richard Verreau (79)
tenor born in Chateau-Richer, near Québec City, he began singing as a child
in church choir. He studied at the Laval University with Émile Larochelle
and made his debut at the Opéra de Lyon in 1951, where he sang the lead
tenor roles in Lakmé, Manon, Mireille, and Les pêcheurs de perles.
Europe, he performed in Belgium, Italy, Austria, and even Russia. He made his
debut at the Royal Opera House in London, as the Duke in Rigoletto, in 1957, other
roles there included: Alfredo in La traviata, Rodolfo in La bohème, Pinkerton
in Madama Butterfly. Back in North America, he appeared regularly with the Opera
Guild of Montréal and the Théâtre lyrique de Nouvelle-France.
He made his debut at the New York City Opera in 1956, as Wilhelm Meister in Mignon,
followed by his debut at the Metropolitan Opera as Faust, in 1963. He appeared
at the San Francisco Opera, as Roméo in Roméo et Juliette. Richard
also performed as soloist with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and the New York
Philharmonic Orchestra. In
1998, he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada and in 2000, an Officer of
the National Order of Quebec
January 1st 1926.
2006: Rudi Carrell/Rudolf Wijbrand Kesselaar (78)
entertainer and singer; he
worked as a TV entertainer and hosted his own show. The Rudi Carrell Show ran
first in the Netherlands, then in Germany for many years. Rudi acted in several
movies and was also a singer with a number of hits, as well as representing the
Netherlands at the Eurovision Song Contest 1960 singing "Wat een geluk"/What
died battling lung cancer)
b. December 19th 1934.
Roger 'Syd' Barrett (60)
British psychedelic pioneer, founder
member, frontman / lead
guitarist of legendary rock band
Pink Floyd, the band's creative force and influential songwriter,
penning most of their early hits.
Born in Cambridge, England, to a well-off middle class family, he acquired the
nickname "Syd" at the age of 15, a reference to an old local
(sadly Syd died from complications from diabetes)
b. January 6th 1946.
2008: Hugh Mendl (88) British record producer;
produced Lonnie Donegan's first recordings, which were pivotal in defining the
new skiffle sound of the 1950s, acted as executive producer for the Moody Blues'
1967 album Days of Future Passed. Through his efforts, David Bowie, John Mayall,
Caravan, Genesis among others signed with
Decca; he also produced the original cast recordings of musicals such as Hello
Dolly, Fings Ain't Wot They Used T'Be, and Cinderella.(?)
b. August 6th 1919
Robbie Jansen (60) South African jazz multi-musician, born in Cape
Town, he began in local bands such as The Rockets, performing music made popular
by the Sth African radio, playing the British pop of the late 60s. But after a
trip to London, part of a prize in a band competition, he soon discovered Black
music from the USA and his love for it. He next played in the brass section of
Cape Town's cult jazz/rock group Pacific Express from where he went solo as an
alto-sax player and singer. South African duo Johnny Clegg and Sipho Mchunu brought
Robbie on board to play flute and saxophone on Juluka's debut album, Universal
Men. Robbie then joined the growing band for their next two albums, before resuming
his solo career. In 2006 his album, Nomad Jazz was finalist for a SAMA Award,
as best Jazz album of the year. He has two other solo albums, Vastrap Island and
The Cape Doctor. Sadly he suffered with ill health and respiratory problems in
his latter years (sadly
died after a long illness)
2010: Lelio Luttazzi (87)
Italian musician and singer, his many songs include "Senza cerini",
"Legata ad uno scoglio", "Timido twist" ,"Chiedimi tutto"
etc. He has composed pieces like Una zebra a pois, sung by Mina, Vecchia America
for Quartetto Cetra, "Eccezionalmente, Sì" for Jula De Palma
"You'll say to-morrow" recorded in Italian language by Sophia Loren,
and "Souvenir d'Italie". He appeared on television in the 80s and 90s
in shows such as "Cipria" by Enzo Tortora and in 1991 at Telemontecarlo
for "Festa di compleanno". On October 8th 2006 he was guest of honor
for Fiorello's show "Viva Radio2" which, for the occasion, went on the
air at the same time as on the radio as on TV. (peripheral
neuropathy) b. April 27th 1923
Ezequiel Neves (74) Brazilian record producer and journalist (died
after long illness) b.????
2011: Manuel Galbán (80)
a Grammy winner, pianist and arranger, most notable for his work with Los Zafiros,
Ry Cooder and the Buena Vista Social Club. He grew up in the fishing town of Gibara,
after playing guitar and tres in various local youth groups, he got his first
professional gig at the age of 14 playing guitar with the Orchestra Villa Blanca.
In 1956 he moved to Havana, where he spent seven years playing in bars and clubs
and appearances on radio.
In 1963 he joined the legendary vocal group Los Zafiros, after a mutual friend
had recommended him to them. His playing proved to be an essential ingredient
to the sound of Los Zafiros; he left the group in 1972. After he spent three years
with Cuba's national musical ensemble, Dirección Nacional de Música,
he worked a further 23 years with the Grupo Batey as a guitarist, vocalist and
pianist, touring extensively across four continents. In 1998 he joined the traditional
Cuban group Vieja Trova Santiaguera with whom he toured and released two highly
acclaimed albums. He also he appeared in the Wim Wenders film Buena Vista Social
Club, filmed with Ry Cooder during the sessions for the debut solo album by Ibrahim
Ferrer. Later he recorded with Ferrer and Buena Vista Social Club bassist Cachaíto
Lopez, leading to his engagement as the featured guitarist with the touring ensemble
named after the film. In 2001 he recorded Mambo Sinuendo with Ry Cooder which
won the 2003 Grammy for Best Pop Instrumental Album.
(sadly Manuel died of a heart attack at his home in Havana)
b. January 14th 1931.
2011: Yuri Kukin (78) Russian
singer-songwriter born in the town of Syasstroy; after graduating from the Institute
of Physical Training in Leningrad in 1954, he worked as a figure skating coach
in sports schools. In 1960, he participated in geological expeditions to Kamchatka
and Pamir. Since
childhood, he was involved with music, playing in a jazz band as a drummer. In
1948, he started to write songs and perform them. Later, some of these songs became
popular among hikers and geologists, and then among the general public. Over time,
Kukin won prizes at various festivals. In 1968, he began performing as an artist
at Lenconcert. In 1971, he began working at the Leningrad Symphony. In 1979 he
worked at Lenconcert, and in 1988, he worked at a theater studio called Benefis
(?) b. July
Dennis Flemion (57) American
rock keyboardist and drummer; along
with his brother Jimmy, he
was a founding member of the rock band The Frogs. He was the primary percussionist
for the band. Dennis was also a temporary member of The Smashing Pumpkins from
1996 to 1997, filling in on live keyboards following the death of Jonathan Melvoin.
and Jimmy also appeared on The Smashing Pumpkins' 'Medellia of the Gray Skies',
on "Tonight, Tonight", and on the album 'Adore', backing vocals on "To
Sheila" and "Behold! The Night-Mare" (tragically
Dennis drowned while swimming
in Lake Wind,Wisconsin)
b. June 6th 1955..
2013: MC Daleste/Daniel
Pedreira Senna Pellegrine (20) Brazilian
funk singer, songwriter and rapper; born in São
Paulo, he began his career in 2009 composing his first funk songs and found success
after releasing "Deusa da Ostentação'", "Ostentação
Fora do Normal" and "Quem é Essa Menina de Vermelho?" and
collaboration with another urban artist MC Guimê (tragically
he was shot in the stomach while performing a show in São Paulo with reportedly
3000 attending. He died later that day in hospital. The Brazilian rap scene has
turned violent with a number of MCs being killed including Felipe Boladão,
MC Careca and MC Primo) b.
October 30th 1992.
Byungho Yoon (78) Korean-born Canadian
violinist and composer, born in Jung Up village in southern Korea. As a youngster
he joined the Korean Youth Partisans to "defeat the U.S. imperialists and
their allies" and was imprisoned by enemy forces. He later joined the South
Korean military band, where he learnt to play the violin. In 1991, Byungho,
his wife and their children immigrated to Canada, where he continued his career
in music and became a member of the York Symphonic Orchestra. He was anti-American,
also member of the Communist Party of Canada, as well as a member of the Korean
Truth Commission and a supporter of Korean Re-Unification. He later visited the
Democratic People's Republic of Korea in 1994 and 2005. (Byungho
died after a series of strokes) b.
November 11th 1936.
American country music singer born in Maynardville, TE., and charted
20 singles on the Hot Country Songs charts, including "Loving You Will Never
Grow Old", "Your Pretty Roses Came Too Late" and "Come On
In and Let Me Love You" (?)
b. May 15th 1942.
2014: Francis "Frankie"
Dunlop (86) American jazz drummer
born in Buffalo, New York; he began playing guitar at age nine and drums at ten.
He was playing professionally by age 16 and received some classical education
in percussion. He toured with Big Jay McNeely and recorded with Moe Koffman in
1950 before serving in the Army during the Korean War. After his discharge he
played with Sonny Stitt, Charles Mingus, Sonny Rollins in 1958, 196667,
Maynard Ferguson from 195860, Lena Horne, Duke Ellington in 1960, and Thelonious
Monk from 196064; it is for his recordings with the last of these that he
is principally remembered. Later in his life he recorded with Lionel Hampton from
197581, Earl Hines 197374, after which he played with Ray Crawford,
and Joe Zawinul before retiring in
1984, having recorded on over 100 albums. Frankie and his jazz pianist brother
Boyd were inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall of fame on October 4th 2012
b. December 6th 1928.
Rokusuke Ei (83) Japanese lyricist, composer, author, essayist and
TV personality of Chinese descent. He wrote the lyrics to the song "Ue o
Muite Aruko", known internationally as "Sukiyaki", which has been
used in several English language films. He also wrote the lyrics to the song "Miagete
Goran Yoru no Hoshi o" sung by Kyu Sakamoto in 1963.
(?) b. April 10th 1933.
Om Prakash Sonik (77) Indian composer and Bollywood music director;
he composed music for films like Mahua (with the haunting Dono ne kiya tha pyar
magar), Truck Driver, Mehfil, Beti, Dharti Ki Godh Mein, Dharma (the famous qawwali
Raaz ki baat keh doon to, jaane mehfil mein phir kya ho), Raftaar, Umar Qaid,
Chowki No. 11 (which had the memorable hit number sung by Shobha Gurtu, Kahin
ho na mohalle me halla) and Ladki Pasand Hai. In the past few years, Omi largely
remained away from Bollywood but composed certain non-film and private albums,
religious music and other genres of music. Till the end, he remained active with
The Indian Performing Right Society Ltd, which ensures royalties for all performers,
said Som. (sadly died of a cardiac arrest)
Walter Kittredge (70) American singer, songwriter, violin, seraphine,
a famous musician during the American Civil War.
Born in Merrimack, New Hampshire, he was a talented self-taught musician
toured solo and also with the Hutchinson Family, a musical troupe. In his career
he wrote over 500 songs, many of them dealing with themes of the American Civil
War. His most famous song, "Tenting on the Old Camp Ground", was sung
by both sides of the war and is known throughout the world. Walter was also a
noted supporter of Abolitionism and the Temperance movement (?)
b. October 8th 1834.
Charlie James Shavers (50) American swing era jazz trumpet player,
born in New York. He originally took up the piano and banjo before switching to
trumpet and went on to play with Johnny
Dodds, Roy Eldridge, Dizzy
Gillespie, Jimmy Noone, Sidney Bechet, Midge Williams and Billie Holiday. In 1953-54
he worked with Benny Goodman, and toured Europe with Norman Granz's popular Jazz
at the Philharmonic series. He formed his own band with Terry Gibbs and Louie
was also an arranger and composer, one of his compositions, "Undecided",
jazz standard (sadly Charlie died after battling throat
cancer) b. August
Memphis Blues Boy
American blues singer, guitarist and drummer, born in Memphis, Tennessee; as a
child he learned to tap dance, as a teenager he worked as part dancer, part comedian,
with the Rabbit Foot Minstrels. This led to work in various variety shows in the
1940s, and he appeared on local radio working alongside Willie Love, Joe Willie
Wilkins and Sonny Boy Williamson II, billed as the Four Aces. He became a part
of the blues scene that grew up around Beale Street and made his first recording
for RPM Records in 1951. Willie wrote the songs "Nervous Wreck" and
"Try Me One More Time", and reworked others such as Catfish Blues and
Curtis Jones' Lonesome Bedroom Blues. Sam Philips signed him up as "the Memphis
Blues Boy" for Sun in early 1953, as a singing drummer with a band, Before
recording for Chance Records in Chicago. Willie also worked with Big Walter Horton,
Elmore James, Johnny Shines, and Memphis Slim during his active years and in the
late 1950s he was briefly a member of Willie Cobbs' band. After a spell in prison
and back in Memphis, Willie continued working throughout the 60s and 70s, until
his health deteriorated (?)
b. August 6th 1922.
2006: Sabine Dünser (29) Liechtensteinerin
lead singer and co-founder of the gothic metal band Elis. She released her first
album "Twilight" in 2001 when the band was known as Erben der Schöpfung.
By the second album, some of the members of Erben der Schöpfung including
Sabine, left to form the band Elis. Sabine recorded 3 albums and the EP "Show
Me The Way" with Elis before her untimely death (Sadly
died from a cerebral hemorrhage) b. June 27th 1977.
2011: Kenny Baker (85) American
fiddler, born in Jenkins, Kentucky and he is considered to be one of the most
influential fiddlers in bluegrass music; early on, he was influenced by the swing
fiddler Marion Sumner, guitarist Django Reinhardt and violinist Stephane Grappelli.
He served in the United States Navy before pursuing a musical career full-time
when he joined Don Gibson's band as a replacement for Marion Sumner. During a
package show with Don Gibson, Kenny met Bill Monroe and was offered a job. He
cut his first recordings with Monroe's Bluegrass Boys on December 15th 1957. Kenny
served more years in Monroe's band than any other musician, 27 years. After leaving
the Bluegrass Boys in 1984, he played with a group of friends, Bob Black, Alan
Murphy, and Aleta Murphy recording the album , Dry & Dusty in 1973, after
which he teamed up with Josh Graves, who had played resonator guitar for Lester
Flatt & Earl Scruggs as a Foggy Mountain Boy. They played together until Josh's
death in 2006. Kenny was named to the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Honor
in 1999. His most recent recordings include "Cotton Baggin' 2000" and
"Spider Bit the Baby" on OMS Records. (sadly Kenny died of complications
from a stroke)
June 26th 1926.
2011: George McAnthony/Georg Spitaler (45)
Italian country singer, multi-musician and songwriter
born in Appiano; since 1988 he toured around Italy, Austria, Germany, Switzerland
He recorded 14 albums, three of them in Nashville. He performed as a "Country
One Man Band", playing seven acoustic instruments at the same time, live,
without playback or support from other musicians. He played 12-string guitar,
dobro, kazoo, harmonica and mandolin or electric guitar, with his feet he played
percussion instruments such as bass drum, snare, tambourine and hi-hat. He performed
a duet with John Denver and appeared in radio and TV broadcasting shows. Georg
has been awarded the "Best European Country Artist", "Vocalist"
and "Country Song of the Year" and was also dedicated to charity projects.
His 13th album "Bridge To El Dorado", came 2nd at the European Country
Music Awards 2009 in the Category "Best European Album of the Year".
Georg recorded his forteenth and final album "Dust Off My Boots" in
Nashville, Tennessee, with Brent Mason, Paul Franklin and Bryan Sutton.
Georg died from a heart attack in Terracina, Italy)
April 6th 1966.
2012: "Uncle" Lionel Batiste (81) American
jazz-blues singer, bass drummer,
kazoo player from
New Orleans. He began his career at aged 11 playing bass drum with the Square
Deal Social & Pleasure Club. He was the bass drummer, vocalist and assistant
leader of the marching brass band, the Treme Brass Band. In 2006 The National
Endowment for the Arts awarded them a National Heritage Fellowship. He
has served as leader of the daily Moldejazz parade since 2000 and was king of
the Krewe du Vieux for 2003 (?)
b. February 1st 1931.
2013: Brett Walker
(51) American songwriter, singer, and record producer born in Norman,
to Los Angeles at
the age of 21 where he worked as a songwriter and collaborated with a number of
artists and songwriters, including Survivor, Nick Gilder, Jonathan Cain, Russ
Ballard and Alias featuring Freddy Curci. In 1991 he co-wrote the song "Waiting
for Love" for the band Alias and the song went on to become Brett's first
top-10 international hit. The Alias CD earned platinum sales throughout the world,
and the song "Waiting for Love" received a BMI Award for top radio airplay
that year. His first solo record, Nevertheless, released in 1994, generated a
top-10 hit in Europe with the song "Lecia". His music was heard over
300 network television shows, including The Young and the Restless, One Tree Hill,
Felicity, CSI: Miami, Everwood, Malcolm in the Middle, Baywatch, and One Life
to Live (?)
b. November 14th 1961.
Henry "Hank" LoConti Sr (85) American
venue owner-founder of the Agora Theatre and Ballroom in Cleveland, Ohio
and started his career in Jukeboxes. His first Agora Club, referred to as Agora
Alpha, opened on February 26th 1966 on the corner of Cornell and Random Roads
in Little Italy. In 1967, the Agora moved to a second building aka Agora Beta,
near the campus of Cleveland State University. It gave exposure to many bands
who were starting out, both from the Cleveland area and abroad. Many artists such
as David Bowie, U2,
Lou Reed, Bruce Springsteen, Grand Funk Railroad,
Duran Duran, ZZ Top, Glass Harp, The Raspberries, and 100s of others achieved
much exposure after playing the Agora. The popularity of the club led the Agora
to expand during the 1970s, opening as many as thirteen clubs, in cities including
Columbus, Ohio, Atlanta, Dallas, Tampa,
Miami, Houston, Hartford, Akron, Toledo, New
Haven, Painesville and Youngstown. However the Cleveland Club is the only one
still in existence today. In 1984, the
Agora was destroyed by fire, and Hank reopened in a new building on Euclid Avenue,
east of Downtown Cleveland. In 2012, the LoConti family donated the Agora to non-profit
MidTown Cleveland (sadly Hank died from Lymphoma)
Ernie Maresca (76) American songwriter and singer,
born in the Bronx, New York. He began singing and writing in a doo-wop
group, the Monterays, later renamed as the Desires. In 1957, a demo of his song
"No One Knows" came to the attention of Dion DiMucci, who recorded it
with the Belmonts, the record reached No.19 on the Billboard Hot 100 record chart
in 1958. He then wrote "The Wanderer", "Lovers Who Wander";
and "Donna the Prima Donna" for Dion as well as co-writing "Runaround
Sue". In 1962, he wrote a solo hit for himself, "Shout Shout (Knock
He kept on writing for plenty of artists, too, often on the Laurie roster, and
in that capacity had some modest hits with Reparata &
the Delrons - "Whenever a Teenager Cries", Bernadette Carroll - "Party
Girl", and Jimmie Rodgers - "Child of Clay", which he co-wrote
with Jimmy Curtiss (sadly Ernie died at his home in South
Florida, after a brief illness) b.
August 21st 1938.
Gérard Bourgeois aka Robert Bourgeois (80) French composer and
lyricist born in Paris, in the early 1960s he met the lyricist Jean-Max Rivière
and together they became a popular song writing team. In 1962 they wrote the song
"Madrague" for Brigitte Bardot and also wrote for singers like Richard
Anthony "Now You Can Go Away" and Jean-Claude Pascal "Between The
Sea and You" among many others. In 2006 Gérard
was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honour by Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres
June 17th 1936.
1949: Fritz Hart (75) English-born Australian
composer born at Brockley, Greenwich; in his younger years he spent three years
as a chorister at Westminster Abbey, under Sir Frederick Bridge, and then went
to the Royal College of Music in 1893. He went on to write 23 operas, of which
18 were composed in Melbourne and 4 in Hawaii. Fritz wrote 514 songs, of which
about half were composed in Melbourne and a quarter each in England and Hawaii;
four large choral works, unaccompanied choruses, and part-songs. He was deeply
attached to the poetry of Robert Herrick, and set his words 126 times. His choral
works used texts by Shelley and Walt Whitman.
He wrote a symphony in 1934, 14 other orchestral works, numerous chamber and solo
instrumental works including 2 string quartets and 3 violin sonatas, transcriptions
and arrangements (Fritz
sadly died while living in Honolulu of cardiac disorder)
b. February 11th 1874.
1951: Giannina Arangi-Lombardi (59) Italian
spinto soprano, particularly associated with the Italian operatic repertory. She
made her debut in Rome in 1920, singing mezzo-soprano roles for the next 3 years.
sang at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan from 1924-30, making her debut as Elena
in Boito's Mefistofele, under the baton of Arturo Toscanini. Rapidly invited in
all the great opera houses of Europe, although she never appeared in Paris or
London, she also sang to great acclaim in South America and was chosen by Nellie
Melba to take part in her farewell tour of Australia in 1928. She was renowned
in roles such as La Vestale, Lucrezia Borgia, La Gioconda, and Aida. She retired
from the stage, in '38 while still in good voice. She then taught at the Music
Conservatory in Milan, and later in Ankara, where she had the well-known soprano
Leyla Gencer as a pupil She made a number of 78-rpm discs of individual arias
and duets, and four complete opera recordings, Aida; Cavalleria rusticana; La
Gioconda; and Mefistofele as Helen of Troy to Nazzareno De Angelis's Mephisto
(?) b. June 20th 1891.
1972: Robert Weede/Robert Wiedefeld (69) American
operatic baritone, born
in Baltimore, Maryland, he studied singing at the Eastman School of Music and
in Milan. He made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 1937, as Tonio in Pagliacci.
His other roles at the Metropolitan included Baron Scarpia, Rigoletto, Manfredo,
Amonasro, and Shaklovity. Singing the role of Rigoletto, he made his debuts in
Chicago in 1939, San Francisco in 1940, and at the New York City Opera in 1948.
In 1956, he scored a great success on Broadway as Tony Esposito in the original
production of Frank Loesser's The Most Happy Fella, which was recorded complete
by Columbia Records. He was also seen on Broadway in Milk and Honey from 1961-63,
also recorded and Cry for Us All in 1970. (died
in Walnut Creek, California)
b. February 22nd 1903.
1980: Vinicius de Moraes (66)
Brazilian poet and songwriter; born in Rio de Janeiro,
he was a seminal figure in contemporary Brazilian music. As a poet, he wrote lyrics
for a great number of songs that became all-time classics, hundreds
of international performers have recorded more than 400 of his songs.
He was also a composer of Bossa nova, a playwright, a diplomat and, as an interpreter
of his own songs, he left several important albums (?)
b. October 19th 1913.
1996: Sergey Kuryokhin
(42) Russian film actor, film composer, pianist, music director, experimental
artist and writer based in St. Petersburg, Russia. Sergey began his acting career
as a piano and keyboard player with a school band in Leningrad. After playing
with professional jazz-bands as well as popular rock musicians, he went through
several stages in his career, and eventually became one of the most recognisable
names and faces in Russia during the 1980s and 1990s. At the end of his short
life, he emerged as an avant-garde film composer, improvisor, performance artist
and film actor. Outside Russia he is primarily known as a jazz and experimental
musician, through his works released since 1981 on UK's Leo Records, as well as
his concert tours with Ensemble Pop-Mekhanika and his happening show also titled
Pop Mekhanika. He also made a significant contribution to several albums of the
famous Russian rock band Aquarium (Passed away young, with
a rare heart condition, cardiac sarcoma) b. 16
2006: Milan Williams (58) American keyboardist,
songwriter and founding member of R&B/funk band the Commodores. Born in Okolona,
Mississippi. His first band was called The Jays, after they disbanded he met the
other founding members of the Commodores in 1967. In 1969 he traveled with the
band to New York, where they recorded a single called "Keep On Dancing"
on Atlantic Records. Milan
wrote the Commodores first hit record the instrumental track, "Machine Gun".
Other Commodores songs penned by him are; "The Bump", "Rapid Fire",
"I'm Ready", "Better Never Than Forever", "Mary Mary",
"Quick Draw", "Patch It Up", "X-Rated Movie", "Wonderland",
"Old-Fashion Love", "Only You", a track he also produced,
taken from the Commodores first LP without Lionel Richie, Commodores 13, "You
Don't Know That I Know", "Let's Get Started" and "Brick House".
He left the Commodores in 1989 (Sadly
died after battling cancer) b. March 28th 1948.
2006: John Coletta (74)
English with Italian roots, music manager and music producer; he managed
Deep Purple and Whitesnake, Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow. He
remained an integral part of the management of the Deep Purple through the years
1968 to 1976, often touring with them. After the group split, he managed David
Coverdales Whitesnake for many years. Later he lived in Spain, and was involved
with concert promotion there until he became ill in 2005. (Died
of a heart attack after watching Italy in the World Cup final) b.
2011: Facundo Cabral (74) Argentine
singer and songwriter born in La Plata, from the most humble of beginnings, he
went on to inspire millions around the world through his songs, poems and 66 books.
Maybe best known as the composer of "No soy de aquí ni soy de allá"/"I'm
not from here nor there", which he improvised during one of his concerts.
His songs have been covered by Spanish language interpreters such as Alberto Cortez,
who was also a friend of his, Juan Luis Guerra and Joan Manuel Serrat.
went into exile in Mexico during Argentina's 1976-1983 military dictatorship and
he was named a United Nations Messengers of Peace in 1996.
songs turned more spiritual
and he continued to fill concert halls across Latin America until his death
he died of multiple gun shot wounds when he was brutally shot and killed during
a tour in Guatemala City while en route to La Aurora International Airport)
b. May 22nd 1937.
2013: Lewis Lymon (69) American
in New York City and sang with the Harlemaires Juniors along with his brothers
Frankie and Howard Jr before forming
rhythm and blues vocal group
Teenchords. They released cut a series 50s gems
including the ballad Please Tell the Angels and tunes including Not
Too Young To Fall In Love, Honey Honey, Tell Me Love,
Lydia and Im So Happy. Lewis with the Teenchords
also sang in the 1957 movie Jamboree, which featured Fats Domino and
Jerry Lee Lewis. He kept singing through out his life; he sang on and off with
Jimmy Merchant and original Teenager, Herman Santiago in the Legendary Teenagers
from the 1980s into the new millennium and formed a new Teenchords for a few recordings.
He also sang with Drifters and Coasters group (sadly
died from prostate cancer) b.
June 20th 1944.
2013: James "Jim"
Foglesong (90) American country music executive;
born in Lundale, West Virginia. He began his career in the music industry at Columbia
Records in 1951, transferring 78 RPM records into LP formats. Next he worked for
RCA-Victor for 20
years, then moved to Nashville in 1970 to head the
A&R division at Dot Records. He signed popular artists, among them Barbara
Mandrell, Don Williams, Garth Brooks,
the Oak Ridge Boys, Donna Fargo, Reba McEntire, Con
Hunley, George Strait, Tanya Tucker, Sawyer Brown, Suzy Bogguss and Kevin Morris.
In Nashville, the records Jim promoted won 46 Grammy, CMA and ACM awards. He was
inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2004 (?)
b. July 26th 1922.
2014: Lorenzo Álvarez Florentín (87)
Paraguayan composer and violinist, born in San Cosme
y Damián, and started his musical journey in the 30s. At aged 11 he moved
to Encarnación, where he made his debut in the Molinas brothers' band before
moving to Asunción
in 1950. He went on to form and or play in many ensambles with musicians such
as Oscar Escobar, Carlos Centurion, Juan Carlos Miranda and Jorge Alonso. He was
known for compositions such as "Soul and Violin", "Night Whistle",
"Go Albirroja Go" - the most popular song dedicated to the Paraguayan
football team. (sadly died
of a heart attack) b. August 10th 1926.
Ken Thorne (90) British television and film score
composer, born in East Dereham, Norfolk and began his musical career as a pianist
with the big bands of England during the 1940s. Then at age 27, he decided to
study composition with private tutors at Cambridge and later studied the organ
for five years in London. Ken began composing scores for films in 1948 and went
on to composed
music for "Inspector Clouseau", the Monkees' comedy "Head"
and "The Magic Christian", which starred Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr
and won an Oscar for scoring the musical comedy "A Funny Thing Happened on
the Way to the Forum". He was hired to handle the music for "Superman
II" and "Superman III", for which he rearranged the John Williams
themes composed for the original "Superman" in 1978. He moved permanently
to the US when he started work on the "Superman" films. In later years,
he worked mostly in television, where his credits include the TV movies "The
Return of Sherlock Holmes," "Diana: Her True Story" and "Liz:
The Elizabeth Taylor Story".
(?) b. January 26th 1924.
2014: John Spinks (60) English
guitarist, singer, songwriter and founding member of the British rock/power trio
'The Outfield', based in Manchester, UK. The band enjoyed success in America,
but never had similar success in the UK.. They released their first album, Play
Deep, in 1985 through Columbia Records, which reached No.9 on the Billboard 200
and reached triple platinum in America. Their single "Your Love" reached
No.6 on the Billboard Hot 100 as well as No. 7 on the Mainstream Rock chart, and
became their signature song. Their next 3 albums all charted in the US and 7 other
of thier singles charted on the
Billboard Hot 100, including Since Youve
Been Gone and Voices of Babylon (sadly
John died while fighting liver cancer) b. 1954.
2015: Bashar Nawaz (79) Indian Urdu poet and songwriter,
he penned the popular song Karoge Yaad in the Bollywood film Bazaar. He had written
lyrics for other Hindi films such as 'Lori' and 'Jane Wafa', and Ghulam Ali, Lata
Mangeshkar, Mohd Aziz, Asha Bhosale, Talat Aziz, Bhupinder and Mehdi Hasan among
others have given voice to his Ghazals. He also wrote 13 episodes of the TV serial
Amir Khusro, which was telecast on Doordarshan in 1983. Bashar also penned 26
episodes of the musical opera "Sare Jahan se Accha Hindustan Hamara".
He was honored with prestigious "Pulotsav Samman" and "Ghalib Award"
for his contribution to Urdu literature.
Gloria Bentley aka Gloria Lind (90) American
soprano opera singer from the Chicago area sang with renowned companies such as
Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Met.
(sadly died from Alzheimer's) b.
2015: Ettore Stratta (82) American conductor and music
2015: Michael Masser (74) American songwriter
born in Chicago; he attended the University of Illinois College of Law and became
a stockbroker before to pursing a career in music. His first major hit, "Touch
Me in the Morning", was co-written with Ron Miller and recorded by Diana
Ross. He co-wrote several other hit songs in the 1970s and 1980s, including four
made famous by Whitney Houston, "Greatest Love of All", "Didn't
We Almost Have It All", "Saving All My Love for You" and "All
At Once". His other hit songs include "Hold Me", "Tonight,
I Celebrate My Love", "If Ever You're in My Arms Again", "In
Your Eyes", "Nothing's Gonna Change My Love for You", "Miss
You Like Crazy", "Someone That I Used To Love", "The Greatest
Love of All", "So Sad the Song", "It's My Turn", "Last
Time I Saw Him" and many more. Michael was nominated for an Academy Award
in 1976 for Best Music, Original Song, for "Theme from Mahogany (Do You
Know Where You're Going To)," which he wrote with Gerry Goffin. In
2002, a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs, California, Walk of Stars was dedicated
to him and he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2007. ()
b. March 24th 1941.
Geneviève Castrée aka Woelv/Ô Paon (34) Canadian
singer-songwriter, guitarist and comic book artist, born in Loretteville, Quebec
and later lived in the Pacific Northwestern United States. (sadly
died from pancreatic cancer) b.1981.
Vaughn Harper (71) American radio DJ,
born in New York City and a veteran WBLS New York personality who possessed one
of R&B radios most iconic baritone voices. Nicknamed
Velvet Voice, he was a major pioneer of the smooth and soulful Quiet
Storm R&B/blues/jazz format at WBLS that became popular in the early
'80s. Before radio, basketball was the 6-foot-4 Vaughns first love. A star
player at both Boys High in Brooklyn and Syracuse University, he became a fifth-round
draft pick for the Detroit Pistons. Later recruited, trained and mentored by legendary
WBLS radio personality/programmer Frankie Crocker, he joined the station in 1976.
Although he suffered a stroke in 1993, Harper recovered and returned to the WBLS
airwaves. He also lent his voice to commercials, the Grand Theft Auto IV video
game and the Apollo Theater as master of ceremonies for the venues famed
Amateur Night talent contests. Inducted into the Living Legends Hall
of Fame, Harper retired from WBLS in 2008 after more than three decades on the
he been battling health issues over the last few years)
b. March 7th 1945.
Phoebe Knapp (68)
American composer of music for hymns,
born in New York City and a members of the John Street Methodist Episcopal Church
in New York City. She wrote over 500 hymn tunes, the most familiar is the tune
now called Assurance for Fanny Crosby's lyrics Blessed Assurance. Another hymn
by Fanny Crosby for which Phoebe wrote the music is "Nearer the Cross."
Other hymn tunes include the tune for "Jesus Christ is Passing By" by
J. Denham Smith, which is called "Albertson," and the one for "My
Spirit Soul and Body" by Mary D. James, which is called "Consecration."
She also wrote sacred choral and solo works, perhaps the best known of which is
the Palm Sunday aria "Open the Gates of the Temple."
in Poland, Maine)
b. March 9th 1839.
Ferdinand "Jelly Roll" Morton (50) American
virtuoso ragtime, and pioneer jazz pianist, bandleader, and composer born in New
Orleans, Louisiana, who some call the first true composer of jazz music. His composition
"Jelly Roll Blues" was the first published jazz composition, in 1915.
He is also notable for naming and popularizing the "Spanish tinge" of
exotic rhythms and penning such standards as "Wolverine Blues," "Black
Bottom Stomp," and "I Thought I Heard Buddy Bolden's Say," the
latter a tribute to the pioneering New Orleans trumpeter. His influence continues
to this day in the work of Dick Hyman, Reginald Robinson and Mark Birnbaum (evenaully
died from the effects of a badly treated knife wound, afflicted 11 days previous
to his death)
b. October 20th
1972: Lovie Austin/Cora
Calhoun (84) American
jazz pianist, Chicago bandleader, session musician, composer, and arranger during
the 1920s classic blues era. Born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, after studying music
theory in 1923, she relocated to Chicago where she lived and worked there for
the rest of her life. Her early career was in vaudeville where she played piano
and performed in variety acts. Accompanying blues singers was Lovie's specialty,
and can be heard on recordings by Ma Rainey ("Moonshine Blues), Ida Cox ("Wild
Women Don't Have the Blues"), Ethel Waters ("Craving Blues"), and
Alberta Hunter ("Sad 'n' Lonely Blues"). She led her own band, the Blues
Serenaders, and worked with many top jazz musicians of the '20s, including Louis
the classic blues craze began to wither in the early 1930s, Lovie settled into
the position of musical director for the Monogram Theater, in Chicago where all
the T.O.B.A. acts played. She worked there for 20 years. After World War II she
became a pianist at Jimmy Payne's Dancing School at Penthouse Studios, and performed
and recorded occasionally. In 1961 she recorded Alberta Hunter with Lovie Austin's
Blues Serenaders, as part of Riverside's Living Legends series. Her songs included
"Sweet Georgia Brown," "C-Jam Blues," and "Gallon Stomp".
She and Lil Hardin Armstrong are often ranked as two of the best female jazz blues
piano players of the period and Mary Lou Williams cited Austin as her greatest
(?) b. September 19th 1887.
1979: Arthur Fiedler (85)
American conductor in Boston, Massachusetts,
who as director of the Boston Pops Orchestra from 1930 to 1979, blended works
of classical and popular music in his concerts (He
had been in failing health for some time, and had suffered a heart attack after
a performance on Saturday evening, May 5th 1979. He was in his 50th year as conductor
of the Boston Pops Orchestra) b.
December 17th 1894.
Werner Egk (82) German
born in Auchsesheim, he studied under Carl Orff in Munich.
When radio broadcasting became available to the public, Egk immediately realised
its importance as a mass medium and developed operas and radio plays. At
the beginning of the 1930s, Egk turned his interest towards ballet and opera.
In 1935, he premiered his first opera Die Zaubergeige/The magic violin in Frankfurt
am Main. In May 1941 he composed the soundtrack for Jungens/Boys, a propaganda
film about the Hitler Youth. It included the song Marsch der deutschen Jugend/March
of the German Youth for which Hans Fritz Beckmann wrote the lyrics. 1938 saw the
première of his opera Peer Gynt based on Henrik Ibsen's play (?)
b. May 17th 1901.
1987: John Hammond ll (76)
American record producer, musician and music critic from the 1930s to the early
1980s. Born in New York he funded the recording of pianist Garland Wilson in 1931,
marking the beginning of a long string of artistic successes as record producer.
In his service as a talent scout, he became one of the most influential figures
in 20th century popular music.
was instrumental in sparking or furthering numerous musical careers, including
those of Benny Goodman, Charlie Christian, Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Babatunde
Olatunji, Asha Puthli, Pete Seeger, Teddy Wilson, Big Joe Turner, Aretha Franklin,
George Benson, Bob Dylan, Freddie Green, Leonard Cohen, Bruce Springsteen, Arthur
Russell and Stevie Ray Vaughan. He is also largely responsible for the revival
of delta blues artist Robert Johnson's music. John received a Grammy Trustees
Award for being credited with co-producing a Bessie Smith reissue in 1971, and
in 1986 was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
died from series of strokes) b. December
Dick Lory/Richard "Dick"
Glasser (66) American
singer, songwriter and record producer; born in Canton, Ohios he started recording
in the mid 50's as a rockabilly and pop singer while writing songs for other artists.
In 1955 one of his first recorded songs, "Angels In The Sky", became
a million seller for The Crew Cuts. Later he recorded the song himself on Colombia
Records. His many other songs included I Will, a hit on both sides of the Atlantic;
Baby Bye Bye; Crazy Little Daisy; Midnight To Daylight; Ballroom Baby; Gone Is
My Love; Make Believe Wedding Bells; Crazy Alligator; Wild Blooded Woman to mentiion
just a few. Among artists who recorded his songs were Bobby Vee, PJ Proby, Chet
Atkins, Walter Brennan, Glen Campbell, Billy Fury, Dean Martin, Buddy Greco, The
Kingston Trio and Ruby Winters.
worked at Liberty before becoming a general manager of Dolton Records, an A&R
director for Warner Bros. Records, and started Richbare Music. He produced artists
including Vic Dana, The Everly Brothers, Gary Puckett and the Union Gap, and The
Ventures, among many many others (lung
b. December 8th 1934.
2006: Tommy Bruce (68) British
singer, born in Stepney, London, both his parents died when he was a child and
he grew up in an orphanage. He became a friend of his neighbour, songwriter Barry
Mason, who suggested he record a version of the song "Ain't Misbehavin'",
written by Fats Waller, it reached No. 3 in the UK charts in 1960. From 1963,
he became a regular performer on the ITV variety show Stars and Garters, becoming
involved in comedy routines as well as singing. Later, he made a living in cabaret,
much of it in Spain and Malta, and also made appearances on the 1960s nostalgia
circuit (prostate cancer) b.
July 16th 1937.
Minott/Lincoln Barrington Minott (54) Jamaican
reggae singer and producer, born in Kingston. He
began his musical career as a young teenager in the as a member of the African
Brothers reggae trio. It was in the late 1970s when he
started his solo carrer, gaining a following in Jamaica's dancehalls with songs
like "Vanity", "Hang On Natty", "Mr. DC", and "Jah
Jah Children", while recording for the Caribbean island's first black-owned
music studio, the famed Studio One. Sugar had his biggest hit with the Jackson
Five's "Good Thing Going" in 1981, which reached No.4 in the UK's singles
chart in March of that year, leading him to relocate to the UK, where he became
a focus for UK reggae. Singles such as "Run Come", "Not for Sale",
"African Girl", "Lovers Rock", "In a Dis Ya Time",
"Africa" and "Make It with You" (with Carroll Thompson) were
hits in the years that followed. He
returned to Jamaica in the mid 80s, where Sugar became known for nurturing young
talent with his own Black Roots record label and Youthman Promotion company; artists
such as Junior Reid and Tenor Saw began their careers under his guidance.
His Black Roots
label also featured his productions of others such as Barry Brown, Little John,
Tony Tuff, Barrington Levy, Horace Andy, and one of his discoveries from England,
Trevor Hartley. He also produced early works by Nitty Gritty, Yami Bolo, Colourman,
Daddy Freddy and Garnett Silk. Two months ago, Sugar canceled performances in
Canada after suffering chest pains (Sadly died at
the University Hospital of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica)
b. May 25th 1956.
2010: Mimis Gioulekas (65) Greek
singer (?) b.????
2011: Pierrette Alarie (89) Canadian
soprano and wife of tenor Léopold Simoneau; born in Montreal, Quebec, she
made her debut in 1938 at Les Variétés lyriques in the operetta
The White Horse Inn. On a scholarship she went to the Curtis Institute of Music
in Philadelphia to complete her studies with Elisabeth Schumann.
won the Metropolitan Opera Auditions of the Air and made her Metropolitan Opera
debut on December 8th 1945, as Oscar in Un ballo in maschera under Bruno Walter.
She spent three seasons at the Met singing Olympia Les contes d'Hoffmann, Blonchen
Die Entführung aus dem Serail, etc. She went on to perform at all the major
opera houses and festivals. In
1959 Pierrette received the Calixa-Lavallée Award, in 1967 she was made
an Officer of the Order of Canada and was promoted to Companion in 1995. In 1997,
she was made a Knight of the National Order of Québec (?)
b. November 9th 1921.
George W. Lowen "Lol" Coxhill
jazz saxophonist, born in Portsmouth; in the late 60s and early 70s, he was a
member of Canterbury scene bands Carol Grimes and Delivery and then Kevin Ayers
and the Whole World. He
became known for his solo playing and for work in duets with pianist Steve Miller
and guitarist G. F. Fitzgerald. Lol collaborated with other musicians including
Mike Oldfield, Morgan Fisher, Chris McGregor's Brotherhood of Breath, The Dedication
Orchestra, Django Bates, The Damned, Hugh Metcalfe, Derek Bailey and performance
art group Welfare State. He was compere and occasional performer at the Bracknell
Jazz Festival, and a raconteur as well as a musician (sadly
died after a short illness) b.
September 19th 1932.
2012: Maria Hawkins Cole (89) American
jazz singer, and widow of Nat King Cole, born in Boston. As a jazz singer she
worked most notably with Count Basie and Duke Ellington. She met Nat King Cole
while they were both singing at the Zanzibar Club. Maria traveled and performed
with her husband throughout the '50s. (sadly died while
fighting cancer) b. August 1st 1922.
André Verchuren (92)
French accordionist born in Neuilly-sous-Clermont; he started
to play accordian at 4 years and went on to become the largest seller of accordion
records in the world, selling over 70 million records. By 1992, he
had traveled 7 million kilometers by car and
one million by plane and had participated in more
than 10,000 galas to 40 million viewers. He
recorded 777 albums during his career, his biggest hit was The Betrothed d'Auvergne.
Andre was also a radio host for 30 years, with Radio
Luxembourg for 17 years and Europe One for 13 years. As a former deportee-resistant,
he received a diploma from
President Eisenhower and also recieved the insignia
of Chevalier of the Legion of Honor May 5th 1986 (sadly
Andre died of a heart attack while eating in a pizzeria in Chantilly)
b. December 28th .1920.
2013: Peppi Marchello
(68) American singer
known for his powerful vibrato, lead
and founding member of the Long Island rock band
The Good Rats. They formed in 1964 as the U-Men, then changed their name to the
Good Rats with the release of a self-titled debut album in 1969, which was followed
by a further twelve albums, the last being Blue Collar Rats: The Lost Archives
in 2012. Known for their
clever rock anthems such as "Tasty" and "New York Survivor",
however, it was The Good Rats' live shows that became
legendary, landing them in the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in 2008. In July
of 2009, Peppi cut a series of three commercials for the car donation organization
Kars4Kids (tragically Peppi
died of a heart attack at his Nissequogue
home, while recovering from heart surgery he had
in June) b. 1945
2014: Chris Grier (??) American
musician, guitarist and journalist; born in Miami,
he was a member of avant-garde noise-rock group To Live and Shave in L.A.
from 2003 to 2007
and is credited with guitar and treatments in the
band. Over his career he has also played with the likes of Butthole Surfers
Gibby Haynes, Little Wings, Little Howlin Wolf and more as well as playing
solo. Whether playing solo or in groups, he has shared the stage with Faust, Bob
Pollard, Dan Higgs, Max Ochs, Grey Daturas, Flower Travellin Band, Ya Ho
Wha 13, Wolf Eyes Nate Young, Sightings, Magik Markers, Wooden Wand, Religious
Knives, Six Organs of Admittance, MV+EE and others. (sadly
Chris died from a cardiac arrest) b. ????
George Gershwin/Jacob Gershowitz
multi-award winning composer
and pianist; born in Brooklyn, he quit school and found his first job as a performer
as a "song plugger" for Jerome H. Remick and Company, a publishing firm
on New York City's Tin Pan Alley, where he earned $15 a week. His first published
song was "When You Want 'Em You Can't Get 'Em, When You've Got 'Em, You Don't
Want 'Em", it was published in 1916 when George was only 17 years old and
earned him a sum total of $5. His 1917 novelty rag "Rialto Ripples"
was a commercial success, and in 1919 he scored his first big national hit with
his song "Swanee".
His musicals included George White's Scandals; Lady,
Be Good; Primrose; Tip-Toes; Tell Me More!;
Kay!; Rosalie; Strike up the Band; Funny Face; Show Girl; Let 'Em Eat Cake; Pardon
My English; Girl Crazy; Of Thee I Sing; and Porgy and Bess. He also wrote musical
scores for many films and 7 orchestral compositions including Catfish Row and
Rhapsody in Blue.
In 1983 the musical 'My
One and Only' was an original musical using previously written Gershwin songs
his career was cut short when he died at Cedars of Lebanon Hospital following
surgery for a brain tumor)
b. September 26th 1898.
1949: Danny Polo (48)
clarinetist, very busy world touring sessionist; in the 1920s, he played with
Elmer Schoebel-1923, Merritt Brunies, Arnold Johnson, Ben Bernie, Jean Goldkette
in 1926, and Paul Ash. In 1927 he went with Dave Tough to Europe, where he played
with several Continental bandleaders including Bert Firman, Lud Gluskin, George
Carhart, and Arthur Briggs. From 1930-1935 he played with Ambrose, then returned
to the U.S. in December of that year. In
1938, Danny returned to Britain to play with Ambrose again, and worked with Ray
Ventura in Paris in 1939. Late in 1939 he moved back to the U.S. for good, and
spent the early 1940s working with Joe Sullivan, Jack Teagarden , and Claude Thornhill
again. In 1942, he appeared in Bing Crosby's film Birth of the Blues. Danny also
led his own Midwestern territory band for a time, then returned to play with Thornhill
once more in 1947 (While working with Claude Thornhill's
Orchestra, he unexpectedly became ill and died suddenly) b.
December 22nd 1901.
George Duvivier (84) American
double-bass player; born in New York City and took
up the cello and also the violin while in high school before settling on the bass.
He also learned scoring
and composition before going out on the road
with Lucky Millinder and then with the Cab Calloway bands of the early 40s after
a stint in the army. He was a free lance bassist for most of his life, never belonging
to any one particular group for any extended period of time. He was Bud Powell's
bassist in the year of 1953, during the monumental sessions for "The Amazing
Bud Powell Vol. 2," for which he contributed arrangements. He was a member
of the Eddie "LockJaw" Davis quartet with organist Shirley Scott and
drummer Arthur Edgehill from 1957-59. In 1956, he played in the orchestra in the
movie, The Benny Goodman Story. With the exception of fellow bassists Milt Hinton
and probably Ron Carter, allegedly George has played double bass on more recordings
than any one else in the history of jazz, recording for almost every major jazz
star. One of his last
performances was on the David Letterman show in 1983, accompanying singer/songwriter
Tom Waits. (sadly George
died of cancer in his Manhattan home) b.
August 17th 1920.
Roger Christian (57) American radio personality
and lyricist who wrote several songs for The Beach Boys, mostly about cars, including
"Ballad of Ole' Betsy", "Car Crazy Cutie", "Cherry, Cherry
Coupe", "Dont Worry Baby", "In the Parkin' Lot",
"Little Deuce Coupe", "No-Go Showboat", "Shut Down"
and "Spirit of America," all with Brian Wilson.
He also co-wrote many songs recorded by Jan and Dean, including "Dead Man's
Curve", "The Little Old Lady from Pasadena", "Sidewalk Surfin",
"Drag City", "Honolulu Lulu", and "You Really Know How
to Hurt a Guy". Roger, along with Gary Usher, collaborated on several songs
that were either featured in or specifically written for the films Beach Party,
Muscle Beach Party, Bikini Beach, Ride the Wild Surf, Beach Blanket Bingo, Ski
Party, Beach Ball, and Catalina Caper - including three songs for 'king of the
surf guitar,' Dick Dale. He also worked as a radio personality in the 1960s and
'70s; he was one of the original "Boss Jocks" when 93KHJ debuted in
1965 in Los Angeles. His radio career started in Buffalo, New York in the mid
1950s He moved to the west coast and worked for other radio stations in Los Angeles,
including KFWB (AM), KGBS (AM-FM), KBLA, KBBQ-AM, KRTH-FM, KRLA (AM) and KIQQ-FM
(saddly ied from kidney
and liver failure) b. July 3th 1934
(a DJ named "Roger Christian" working in Buffalo since the 1970s
is apparently unrelated to this Roger Christian).
Blue/Helen Fogel (82) American singer; one of the most popular
female jazz vocalists during America's Big Band era. She
first sang with her brother's band at the age of 10, and later began her career
singing on CBS radio under the name Bonnie Blue
and achieved further fame with the Artie Shaw band in 1938 when she recorded 38
singles with his band, including the hits "They Say" and "All the
Things You Are". In the late 40s, she sang on Dick Haymes radio show and
went on to record with Lionel
Hampton, Nat King Cole, Benny
Goodman, Harry James Orchestra, Tommy Dorsey's
orchestra, among others as well as pursuing a solo career. Over the course of
her career, she recorded more than 500 songs. Helen also acted in several musical
films, including Bathing Beauty and Two Girls and a Sailor (congestive
heart failure) b. April 12th
Herman Brood (54) Dutch pianist, keyboards, singer, painter and media
personality; he founded beat band The Moans in 1964, which would later become
Long Tall Ernie and the Shakers. He was also asked to play with Cuby and the Blizzards,
but was removed by management when the record company discovered he used drugs.
For a number of years, Herman was in jail for dealing LSD, or abroad, and had
a number of short-term engagements with The Studs, the Flash & Dance Band,
Vitesse. In 1976, he started his own group, Herman
Brood & his Wild Romance, best known for their second album, Shpritsz. His
outspoken statements in the press about sex and drug use brought him into the
Dutch public arena even more than his music. In the summer of 1979, he tried to
enter the American market, where he toured as a support-act for The Kinks, The
Cars, and Foreigner. A re-recorded version of Saturday Night peaked at number
35 in the Billboard Hot 100. In 1990, he won the BV Popprijs, one of the highest
Dutch awards for popular music, and recorded Freeze with Clarence Clemons of the
E Street Band and Tejano accordion player Flaco Jiménez. (Herman
found he had only a few months left to live, so took matters into his own hands,
also depressed by the failure of his drug rehabilitation programme, he committed
suicide by jumping off the Amsterdam Hilton) b. November
2005: Julia Frances Langford (92)
American singer and entertainer
who was popular during the Golden Age of Radio and also made film appearances
over two decades. She
attended Lakeland High School, Florida and originally trained as an opera singer.
While a young girl she required a tonsillectomy that changed her soprano range
to a contralto. As a result, she was forced to change her vocal style to a more
contemporary big band, popular music style. At age 17, she was singing for local
dances. Cigar manufacturer Eli Witt heard her sing at an American Legion party
and hired her to sing on his local radio show. While singing for radio during
the early 1930s, she was heard by Rudy Vallee, who invited her to become a regular
on his radio show.From 1935 until 1938 she was a regular performer on Dick Powell's
radio show. From 1946 to 1951, she performed with Don Ameche on The Bickersons
(sadly died from congestive heart failure) b. April 4th
2006: Bill Miller (91) American pianist,
orchestra conductor and musical director with
Frank Sinatra for 46 years. Bill was also pianist for Frank Jr for his last 8
years. He performed with Red Norvo, Mildred Bailey and Charlie Barnet in the 1930s,
and also performed with Tommy Dorsey and Benny Goodman.
first met Sinatra in 1941, they didn't work together until November 1951, when
Bill was performing in the lounge of the Desert Inn, in Las Vegas. Sinatra was
having difficulty holding on to pianists, and it was Jimmy Van Heusen who recommended
Bill to Sinatra. In 1998, he performed "One for My Baby (and One More for
the Road)" at Frank's funeral. He retired for three years, and then came
out of retirement to work for Sinatra's son, Frank Sinatra, Jr. (He
fell broking his hip while performing in Montreal, on July 1. Shortly after the
accident, he suffered a heart attack and underwent heart bypass surgery from which
he sadly didn't recovered) b. February 3rd 1915.
2010: Walter Hawkins
(61) American Grammy
and three time Dove award-winning gospel singer, and
ordained a bishop in 1992. Born in Oakland, CA., Walter started his career in
one of his brother's chorales, "The Northern California State Youth Choir"
of the Church of God in Christ, after which he sang with another of his brothers,
Edwin, in The Edwin Hawkins Singers. He next founded The
Love Centre Church at Oakland
in the early 1970s. He and his Love Center Choir had success with their "Love
Alive" series of recordings; "Love Alive IV", released in 1990,
reached No.1 on the Billboard Gospel Album charts, where it stayed for 33 weeks.
Over his career, Walter worked on 116 hit songs which made the Billboard Gospel
Music charts and
recorded with the likes of Sylvester, Van Morrison, Diahann Carroll, Jeffrey Osborne,
among many others (sadly
lost his battle with pancreatic cancer)
b. May 18th 1949.
2010: Carmen Dragon (62) American classical
harpist, in addition to her career as a concert harpist in the Glendale Symphony
Orchestra, recording credits on numerous television shows, creation of four harp
CDs with both original compositions and classics, and work as a soloist, conductor,
music director, and harp and piano teacher, Carmen spent the last decade of her
life living on the island of Kauai, where she earned her bachelor's degree and
established the North Shore School of Music (complications
from cancer) b. January 17th 1948.
Robert Frank "Rob" Grill (67) American
lead singer, songwriter and bass guitarist; born in Los Angeles, he was a very
early member of the California rock and roll band, The Grass Roots in 1966.
Between 1967-1972, the band set a record for being on the Billboard charts for
307 straight weeks and have sold over 20 million records worldwide. They also
hold the all time attendance record for a one act, at the US concert of 600,000
people on July 4th, 1982 in Washington, DC. Their hit singles include: Let's Live
For Today, I'd Wait A Million Years, Midnight Confessions, Sooner Or Later, Two
Divided By Love >>> READ
MORE <<< (Rob
sadly died from the effects of two strokes and head injuries. He had been in a
coma since sustaining head injuries several weeks earlier when he fell after suffering
a stroke) b. November 30th 1943.
2013: James David Mark (43) American
guitarist for the New Orleans-formed group Michael Hurtt and his Haunted Hearts.
They played obscure covers and originals in the traditional country, rockabilly
and swamp pop genres. The band was a regular feature of Carnival parades and visitors
at the Ponderosa Stomp annual roots-music festival, backing up artists including
Harvey Scales, Ralph Soul Jackson, Herman Hitson, Alex
Chilton, Roscoe Robinson, Bobby Patterson,
Jay Chevalier, Grace Broussard, Joe Clay, Warren Storm, Maggie Lewis, Jivin Gene,
Johnnie Allan, Earl Stanley, Eddie Powers, and Frankie Ford. In 2006, the Haunted
Hearts recorded Come Back To Louisiana with the rockabilly veteran
Jay Chevalier, who that year was named Louisianas official state troubadour.
James has also performed with other bands including Jack Oblivians Tennessee
Tearjerkers, Carroll County Picture Show, the Cowboy Killers, the Belvederes,
Jeffrey Evans, the Piedmont blues guitarist Precious Bryant and the Oxford-based
Wiley and the Checkmates (died from natural causes)
Haden (76) American jazz bassist, bandleader and three-time Grammy
Award winner, born in Shenandoah, Iowa; he made his professional debut as a singer,
when he was 2 years old, on the Haden Family's radio show. He continued singing
with his family until he contracted a bulbar form of polio around his throat and
facial muscles when he was 15. At 14, he had become interested in jazz, and began
playing his older brother's double bass. In 1957 he moved to LA, where his first
recordings were made that year with Paul Bley, with whom he worked until 1959.
He also played with Art Pepper in 1957, and with Hampton Hawes from 1958-1959,
the start of many greats he played with over his long career. He is probably best
known for his long association with saxophonist Ornette Coleman, pianist Keith
Jarrett, and his Liberation Music Orchestra, a group he co-led with pianist Carla
Bley. They won multiple awards in 1970, including Frances Grand Prix du
Disque from the Académie Charles Cros, and Japans Gold Disc Award
from Swing Journal. In 2001, Charle won the Latin Grammy Award for Best Latin
Jazz CD for his album Nocturne, which contains boleros from Cuba and Mexico. In
2003 he won the Latin Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Performance for his album
Land of the Sun and in 2013 he was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award (sadly
died from post-polio syndrome) b. August 6th 1937.
Ramone/Erdélyi Tamás (62) Hungarian
record producer, drummer and last of the original band member of the Ramones,
was born Erdélyi Tamás in Budapest, to Jewish parents who survived
the Holocaust by being hidden by neighbours, although many of his relatives were
victims of the Nazis. The family emigrated to the USA when Tommy was four years
old and he grew up in Forest Hills, Queens, New York. While in high school, he
and guitarist Johnny Cummings, who later became Johnny Ramone, performed together
in a garage band called the Tangerine Puppets. In 1970, Tommy was an assistant
engineer for the production of the Jimi Hendrix album Band of Gypsys. Then in
1974, hugely influenced by 60s groups and the New York Dolls, Tommy, along with
Johnny Cummings, Jeffrey Hyman and Douglas Colvin formed a new band and bassist
Douglas, inspired by Paul McCartney's use of the pseudonym Paul Ramon, called
himself Dee Dee Ramone and convinced the other members to take on the name Ramone
and came up with the idea of calling the band the Ramones.
MORE <<< (sadly
died while fighting bile duct cancer) b. January
Jimmie Lunceford (45) American
saxophonist and bandleader born in Fulton, Mississippi, before the family moved
to Denver. In 1927, while teaching at Manassas High School in Memphis, Tennessee,
he organized a student band, the Chickasaw Syncopators, whose name was changed
to the Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra when it began touring. He was the first high
school band director in Memphis. This band recorded in 1927 and 1930. In 1934
they played at The Cotton Club, his orchestra with their tight musicianship and
often outrageous humor in their music and lyrics made an ideal band for the club,
and Jimmie's reputation began to steadily grow. The band precision can be heard
in such pieces as "Wham (Re-Bop-Boom-Bam)", "Lunceford Special",
"For Dancers Only", "Uptown Blues", and "Stratosphere".
The noted saxophone section was led by alto sax player Willie Smith.
(Tragically Jimmie died while playing in Seaside, Oregon,
he collapsed and died from cardiac arrest during an autograph session)
b. June 6th 1902.
1962: Roger Wolfe Kahn (54)
American jazz and popular
musician, composer and bandleader; it is said that he learnt to play 18 musical
instruments before starting to lead his own orchestra in 1923, aged only 16. In
1925, Roger appeared in a short film made in Lee De Forest's Phonofilm sound-on-film
process. He hired famous jazz musicians of the day to play in his band, especially
during recording sessions, for example Joe Venuti, Eddie Lang, Artie Shaw, Jack
Teagarden, Red Nichols, and Gene Krupa. Recordings were made for Victor until
1929, Columbia in 1929 and 1930, and for the Brunswick label in 1932. Roger
had fun leading and conducting his orchestra. Reportedly, when the band was playing
especially well he used to throw himself onto the floor and wave his legs in the
air. However, in the mid-1930s, he lost interest in his orchestra
and disbanded it, to go into aviation and eventually, in 1941, became a test pilot
for the Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation, a well-known aircraft manufacturer
(sadly died from a heart attack)
b. October 19th 1907.
Louis Wolfe Gilbert (84) Russian-born
American songwriter; he moved to the United States
as a young man and soon established himself as one of the most prolific songwriters
of Tin Pan Alley. He began his career touring with John L. Sullivan and singing
in a quartet at small Coney Island cafe called "College Inn", where
he was discovered by English producer Albert Decourville, who brought him to London
as part of The Ragtime Octet. Louis's
first songwriting success came in 1912 when F. A. Mills Music Publishers published
his song "Waiting For the Robert E. Lee". He relocated to Hollywood
in 1915, and began writing for film, television, and radio including the Eddie
Cantor show and the theme lyrics for the popular children's TV Western, 'Hopalong
Cassidy'. Louis was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970 (?)
b. August 31st 1886.
1979: Minnie Riperton (31)
American R&B singer-songwriter
best known for her five-and-a-half octave vocal range and her 1975 single "Lovin'
You". As a child she studied music, drama, and dance at Chicago's Lincoln
Center. In her teen years, she sang lead vocals for the Chicago-based girl group,
The Gems. While with Chess Records Minnie sang backup for various artists including
Etta James, Fontella Bass, Ramsey Lewis, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, and Muddy Waters.
She also sang lead for the rock/soul group Rotary Connection, from 1967 to 1971.
Her 1975 No.1 hit single, "Lovin' You", was the last release from her
1974 gold album "Perfect Angel". In 1976 Minnie was diagnosed with breast
cancer and underwent a modified radical mastectomy. Though
she was given just six months to live, she continued recording and touring, and
in 1977 she became spokesperson for the American Cancer Society (sadly
died fighting cancer) b. November
Chris Wood (39) UK musician and founding
member of the UK band Traffic; he primarily played flute and saxophone, occasionally
contributing keyboards and vocals. Chris was a co-writer for many of Traffic's
songs and he played on 18 of their albums. Though his career, Chris has also played
and toured with the likes of Dr John, the Wynder K Frog project playing as "Wooden
Frog" and Ginger Baker's Air Force and has recorded and appeared on albums
with many great artists and bands including Jimi Hendrix, Small Faces, Free, Fat
Mattress, Martha Velez, Chicken Shack, Gordon Jackson,
Sky, Locomotive, Shawn Phillips,Steve Winwood,
Jim Capaldi, Reebop Kwaku Baah, John Martyn, Hanson, Crawler,
Third World and Ginger Baker. Chris died while
working on a solo album that was to be titled Vulcan, which was eventually released
in 2008 (pneumonia after a lengthy illness and a battle with alcohol and drugs)
b. June 24th 1944.
Jonathan Melvoin (34) American keyboard player and drummer; he performed
with many punk bands in the '80s such as The Dickies, and also made musical contributions
to many of Susannah and Wendy Melvoin projects, as well as Prince and the Revolution's
album "Around the World in a Day". At the time of his death he was the
touring keyboardist for The Smashing Pumpkins during their worldwide tour for
the album "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness". (He died in New
York City after overdosing on heroin he had taken with Smashing Pumpkins drummer
Jimmy Chamberlin)*December 6th 1961.
1998: Jimmy Driftwood/James
Corbitt Morris (91)
American folk songwriter and musician most
famous for his songs "The Battle of New Orleans" and "Tennessee
He learned to play guitar at a young age on his grandfather's homemade instrument
and used this unique guitar throughout his career. He became popular through his
appearances on the Grand Ole Opry and programs including Ozark Jubilee and Louisiana
Hayride. Jimmy became interested in promoting Arkansas folk music and the local
folk performers he knew in the area, so invited members of the Mountain View community
to perform at a festival of his own devising. This festival grew exponentially
over the years and transformed into the annual Arkansas Folk Festival which would
attract over 100,000 people. Jimmy was invited to sing for Soviet Premier Nikita
Khrushchev as an example of traditional American music during the leader's visit
to the United States. Over his career he wrote 6,000 plus folksongs, of which
over 300 were recorded by various musicians (heart
attack) b. June
Luis "Papo" Deschamps (23)
of the Dominican rap group Sandy y Papo. The group debuted in 1996 with music
that combined merengue rhythms with house and hip-hop (killed in a car accident)
John Owen Rowbotham MBE (85) English actor and
songwriter, born in London, he made his first film appearance in 1944 but did
not achieve lasting fame until the 1970s, when he took the starring role of William
"Compo" Simmonite in the long-running British sitcom Last of the Summer
Wine. The series, started in 1973 and finishing in 2010, is today the world's
longest-running comedy series. Bill became an icon, and was central to its success
and episodes for 26 years, right until his death. In 1958, Owen presented a music
programme titled Dad You're A Square for ATV. During the 1960s, Bill had a successful
second career as a songwriter, with compositions including the hit, Marianne,
recorded by Cliff Richard. At this time he also collaborated with songwriter Tony
Russell on the musical The Matchgirls about the London matchgirls strike of 1888.
Bill worked right up until his death (sadly died fighting
pancreatic cancer) b.
Carter (95) American
jazz alto saxophonist, trumpeter, composer, arranger, and bandleader; a major
figure in jazz from the 1930s to the 1990s, recieving many awards,
The National Endowment for the Arts honored Benny with its highest honor in jazz,
the NEA Jazz Masters Award for 1986. He was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement
Award in 1987, winner of the Grammy Award in 1994 for his solo "Prelude to
a Kiss", and also the same year, received a star on the Hollywood Walk of
Fame. In 2000 awarded the National Endowment for the Arts, National Medal of Arts,
presented by President Bill Clinton. From 1924 to 1928, Carter gained valuable
professional experience as a sideman in some of New York's top bands,
playing with such jazz greats as cornetist Rex Stewart, clarinetist-soprano saxophonist
Sidney Bechet, pianists Earl Hines, Willie "The Lion" Smith, pianist
Fats Waller, pianist James P. Johnson, pianist Duke Ellington.
He first recorded in 1928 with Charlie Johnson's Orchestra, also arranging the
titles recorded, and formed his first big band the following year. He played with
Fletcher Henderson in 1930 and 1931. His arrangements were much in demand and
were featured on recordings by Benny Goodman, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Lena
Horne, Glenn Miller, Gene Krupa, and Tommy Dorsey. Though he only had one major
hit in the big band era with Cow-Cow Boogie,
sung by Ella Mae Morse, during the 1930s he composed and/or arranged many of the
pieces that became swing era classics, such as When Lights Are Low,
Blues in My Heart and Lonesome Nights.
Benny moved to Europe in 1935 to play with Willie Lewis's orchestra, and also
became staff arranger for the BBC dance orchestra and made several records. Over
the next three years, he traveled throughout Europe, playing and recording with
the top British, French, and Scandinavian jazzmen, as well as with visiting American
stars such as his friend Coleman Hawkins. He relocated to LA in 1943, moving more
into studio work. Beginning with "Stormy Weather" in 1943, he arranged
for dozens of feature films and television productions. In Hollywood, he wrote
arrangements for such artists as Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Billy Eckstine,
Pearl Bailey, Ray Charles, Peggy Lee, Lou Rawls, Louis Armstrong, Freddie Slack,
Mel Torme and many
others. In 1990, he was named "Jazz Artist
of the Year" in both the Down Beat and Jazz Times International Critics'
polls. He was also a member of the Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame and in 1980 received
the Golden Score award of the American Society of Music Arrangers. He was also
a Kennedy Center Honoree in 1996, and received honorary doctorates from Princeton
- 1974, Rutgers 1991, Harvard in 1994 and the New England Conservatory in 1998
(complications of bronchitis) b.
August 8th 1907
Ersel Hickey (70)
US rockabilly singer best known for his hit song "Bluebirds over the Mountain";
also wrote songs for other artists, including "The Millionaire" for
Jackie Wilson and "A Little Bird Told Me So" for LaVern Baker and "Don't
Let the Rain Come Down", which was a US top ten hit for the Serendipity Singers.
contribution to the genre has been recognized by the Rockabilly Hall of Fame (died
after surgery to remove his bladder) b. June 27th 1934.
Hal Carter (69)
songwriter, manager, agent, producer (sadly cancer)
2007: Robert Burås (31) Norwegian
guitarist and songwriter in the Norwegian rock band Madrugada and also a founding
member of the band My Midnight Creeps. Born in Narvik he took up guitar at the
age of 12 after listening to Led Zeppelin's Rock and Roll. He played in local
bands before co-founding Abbey's Adoption later changing it's name to Madrugada
and releasing their debut album Industrial Silence in 1999, the first of 6 albums.
Robert founded My Midnight Creeps in 2005 >>>
MORE <<< (Robert was found
dead in his apartment by a friend, with his guitar in his hand) b.
August 12th 1975
Earl Nelson (79) American R&B singer
with Nelson and Relf aka Bob & Earl; best known for co-writing and recording
the original version of "Harlem Shuffle"in 1963, its main success came
in 1969, when it was re-released in the UK and became a Top Ten hit there. Reportedly,
George Harrison called it his favourite record of all time. Earl was also an early
member of the Hollywood Flames and sang lead on the doo-wop group's biggest hit,
"Buzz Buzz Buzz". Earl had achieved further success as a solo artist
under the alias of Jackie Lee, with "The Duck", a hit dance record released
in 1965, which reached No.14 in the U.S.(Alzheimer's disease)
b. September 8th 1928.
2010: Naphtali "Tuli" Kupferberg (86)
American counterculture poet, author, cartoonist,
pacifist anarchist, publisher and co-founder of the band The Fugs. Born in New
York City, he founded the magazine Birth in 1958 and self-published the book Beatniks
or, The War Against the Beats in 1961. Perhaps his best-known book is 1001 Ways
to Beat the Draft in 1966. In 1964, he formed the satirical rock group The Fugs
with poet Ed Sanders. Tuli was one of the band's singers and wrote many of their
songs. He also released two solo albums: "No Deposit, No Return" in
1966, which is a collection of found pop poetry, and "Tuli & Friends"
in 1989. (sadly Tuli died from kidney failure and sepsis)
b. September 28th 1923.
Olga Guillot (87)
Cuban singer, born in Santiago, known as the "queen of bolero".
As a teenager, she and her sister, Ana Luisa, performed as a duo, named the "Duo
Hermanitas Guillot" before going solo. In
1954, she recorded her song "Mienteme"/"Lie to Me", which
became a hit across Latin America, and earned her three consecutive awards as
Cuba's best female singer. In '63, she was given the Golden Palm award as "best
bolero singer of Latin America". Olga continued on touring for the next 40
years in many parts of the world, releasing over fifty albums and winning numerous
awards for her activity in the music world (?) b.
October 9th 1922.
Paulo Moura (77) Brazilian saxophonist and clarinetist,
born in São José do Rio Preto. He studied in the National Music
School and performed with the Brazilian Symphonic Orchestra. Paulo was the first
black artist to become first clarinetist in the Municipal Theatre Orchestra.
He appeared at Bossa Nova night at Carnegie Hall in
1962 with Sérgio Mendes, the two of them also featuring on Cannonball Adderley's
1962 album, Cannonball's Bossa Nova. He also won the Sharp Award for the most
popular instrumentalist of the year in 1992. His CD "Paulo Moura e Os Oito
Batutas" was listed by Barnes & Noble as one of the top 10 recommendations
of the year for 1998 (sadly died while battling lymphoma)
b. July 15th
Matsunaga (54) Japanese bassist, he studied classical bass at Kunitachi
College of Music. After graduation, he joined the successful Japanese Dub Reggae
band Mute Beat, with whom he stayed for several years. In 1998, one of his solo
concert performances was highly acclaimed by Argentinian tango pianist Omar Valente,
and inspired Valente to write a solo piece "Qué nunca fuerte"
specifically for him. Takayoshi is a well recognized and respected versatile studio
bassist and appears with many groups such as Gontiti, UA, Rikuo, Hashiken, both
on recordings and at live concerts. Alongside performing with the band Kut, he
is also a member of the bands Love Joy, and Ring Links (sadly
died from pneumonia) b. February 27th 1958.
Verdean balladeer and an interpreter of the morna style, the plaintive, melodic
lament which is a staple musical style of the country.
Often referred to as "King of Morna", Bana,
who was over seven feet tall, began his musical career during Portuguese colonial
rule, when he worked as a handyman and bodyguard for the legendary Cabo Verdean
composer and performer, B. Leza. Bana released his first album L. Morais in 1967,
which was followed by 5 more albums. His biggest hit single was "Cabinda
a Cunene" in 1998 (sadly died after suffering a cardiac
b. March 5th 1932
Gregg Smith (84) American conductor and composer; he founded and directed
The Gregg Smith Singers in L.A. and moved the group to New York in 1970. They
toured the United States 40 times, in addition to 16 tours of Europe, and three
visits to Asia. The group's repertoire ranged from the colonial-era American compositions
of William Billings to contemporary works by Morton Feldman as well as many works
by Gregg himself. They have also performed works by William Duckworth, Arnold
Schoenberg, Elliott Carter, Charles Ives, Earle Brown, Edwin London, Blas Galindo,
Jorge Córdoba, Harold Blumenfeld, Irving Fine, Morton Gould, William Schuman,
Louise Talma, Arthur Sullivan, and Ned Rorem, as well as early music by composers
such as Giovanni Gabrieli and Heinrich Schütz. (sadly
died from a heart attack) b. August 21st 1931.
1957: Wessel Ilcken (33)
Dutch jazz drummer; he
played in the 1940s in the Piet van Dijks orchestra, and married the singer of
the band, Rita Reys, with whom he started his own jazz band. They were international
famous with tours through Sweden and performances with American bebop musicians
that visited Europe. He has also worked with many
Dutch jazzmen including
Pim Jacobs, Rob Pronk,
Ack and Jerry van Rooyen, Ruud Bosch, Piet Noordijk, Toon van Vliet, Ruud Brink,
Herman Schoonderwalt, Rob Madna, Dick van der Capellen as
well as playing, touring and recording with his own Wessel
Ilcken Sextet (tragically died from a brain haemorrhage)
b. December 1st 1923.
Eddie Boyd (79)
American blues and gospel, pianist and guitarist; born
near Clarksdale, on
Stovall's Plantation, Mississippi, he moved to Memphis where he formed his Dixie
Rhythm Boys, after
which he relocated to Chicago in 1941. In the '50s he wrote and recorded the hit
songs "Five Long Years", "24 Hours", and "Third Degree".
In 1965 Eddie toured Europe with Buddy Guy's
band as part of the American Folk Blues Festival. Later he toured and recorded
with Fleetwood Mac and John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers. Tired of racial discrimination
he experienced in the United States, he first moved to Belgium, where he recorded
with the Dutch band, Cuby and the Blizzards, then
in 1970 he settled in Finland. He continued
to record 10 more blues albums, and played at his last blues concert in 1984.
After which he performed only gospel music. (died in Helsinki, Finland, just a
few months before Eric Clapton released a chart-topping blues album that included
Eddie's "Five Long Years" and "Third Degree")
b. November 25th 1914
Matti "Peltsi" Pellonpää (44)
Finnish award-winning actor and singer born in Helsinki.
He started his career in 1962
as a radio actor at the Finnish broadcasting company YLE, and went on to be nominated
Best Actor by European Film Academy for his role as Rodolfo in La Vie de Boheme
and won the Felix at the European Film Awards in 1992. He also starred in Jim
Jarmusch's 1991 film Night on Earth. As
well as making around 42 films,
he also had a singing career
fronting the band Peltsix. They
performed on Finnish live concerts, radio and TV and released 2 albums 'Lihaa
Ja Leikkeleitä' in 1991 and 'Silkkaa Kryptoniittia' in 93. In 1996 Matti
was one of the people commemorating 100 years of Finnish Cinema on a stamp
(?) b. March 28th 1951
2003: Compay Segundo (97) Cuban Cuban trova
guitarist and composer; his first engagement was in the Municipal Band of Santiago
de Cuba, after which he moved to Havana in 1934, where he also played in the Municipal
Band, on the clarinet. He also learnt to play the guitar and the tres: these became
his main instruments. In the late 1920s Compay
invented the armónico,
a guitar customized with a double third string to fuse the tonal qualities of
the traditional Cuban tres guitar and its Spanish counterpart. In the 1950s he
became well-known as the second voice and tres player in Los Compadres, a duo
he formed with Lorenzo Hierrezuelo in 1947, one of the most successful Cuban duos.
Los Compadres released
Buena Vista Social Club album, which won several Grammy awards. Compay appeared
in the film of the same title (kidney failure) b. November
2004: Arthur "Killer"
Kane (55) American bass
player; born in the Bronx, New York he graduated from Martin Van Buren High School
in Queens, New York. He first played bass in the band Actress along with three
other original New York Dolls: Johnny Thunders, Rick Rivets and Billy Murcia.
The New York Dolls formed in 1971, the original lineup's first performance was
on Christmas Eve 1971 at a homeless shelter, the Endicott Hotel. They debuted
the album "New York Dolls"
in 1973, which was followed by "Too Much Too Soon" in 1974. Arthur remained
part of the Dolls from their founding, until he was forced out of the group shortly
after the departure of Johnny Thunders and >>>
MORE <<< (died
after battling leukemia) b.
February 3rd 1949.
Carlos Kleiber (74) Austrian classical
conductor born in Berlin, he spent most of his early life in Santiago,
Aires, and New York City, and from the early 1950s his professional career in
Germany. He was repetiteur at the Gartnerplatz Theatre in Munich in 1952, and
made his conducting debut with the operetta Gasparone at Potsdam theatre in 1954.
From 1958 to 1964 he was Kapellmeister at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf
and Duisburg, then at the Opera in Zürich from 1964-1966. Between 1966-1973
he was first Kapellmeister in Stuttgart, his last permanent post. During the following
years, he often conducted at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich.
American debut came in 1978 with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and his New York
Metropolitan Opera debut was in 1988, conducting Giacomo Puccini's La bohème
with Luciano Pavarotti and Mirella Freni. BBC Music Magazine,
announced on 17 March 2011 that Carlos had been selected as "the greatest
conductor of all time" (?)
July 3rd 1930.
2008: Gerald Wiggins (86)
American jazz pianist and organist; he worked with Louis Armstrong and Benny Carter.
In the 1940s he moved to LA where he played music for TV and film. He has also
worked with singers like Lena Horne, Kay Starr, Nat King Cole, Lou Rawls, Jimmy
Witherspoon and Eartha Kitt (?) b.
May 12th 1922
Manohari Singh (79) Indian
saxophonist and a key member of Bollywood film composer Rahul Dev Burman's team.
Born in Kolkata into a family of musicians, he tried his hand at the English key
flute, the clarinet and the mandolin, before choosing the saxophone as his forte.
His first break as
a saxophonist was in 1958 with Sachin Dev
Burman for the movie Sitaron se aage. He has also released an album titled Sax
Appeal containing saxophone renditions of various Hindi movie music tracks (sadly
died of a heart attack) b. March 8th 1931.
2011: Jerry Ragovoy (80)
songwriter born in Philadelphia; his best-known composition "Time Is on My
Side", written under the pseudonym of Norman Meade, was made famous by The
Rolling Stones, although it had been recorded earlier by Kai Winding and Irma
Thomas. He also wrote "Stay With Me", which was originally recorded
by Lorraine Ellison, and was performed by Mary J. Blige at the 49th Grammy Awards.
important behind-the-scenes force of East Coast soul music, Jerry wrote or co-wrote
several classic New York and Philadelphia soul records in the 1960s, often distinguished
by a conspicuous gospel feel. The best of these included Garnet Mimms' "Cry
Baby," Erma Franklin's "Piece of My Heart," Howard Tate's "Get
It While You Can," all later covered by Janis Joplin, plus "Time Is
on My Side" and "Stay With Me". He also contributed to first-class
soul records as a producer and arranger (sadly
Jerry died from a stroke) b. September 4th 1930.
2012: Ingo Bellmann (62)
Czech singer and guitarist born in Prague,
he graduated from the Technical University. In 1977 along with Michael German
and Ivan Podobským, he co-founded the group Jablkon, who have released
15 albums (Ingo died unexpectedly while playing football)
December 30th 1949.
Leda Valladares (93) Argentine poet, singer
and musicologist, born in the Province of Tucumán; Leda showed a passion
for Argentine folk music as a child. In the fifties she traveled to Paris, where
with her friend María Elena Walsh, she formed the musical duet Leda
and María. One of her main musical works was an album Mapa
Musical Argentino, released in 1974. She was also the author of Igual
rumbo, grito en el cielo, Grito en el cielo II and América
en Cueros, which earned her to be declared a member of honor of UNESCO in
the early nineties (sadly died while suffering from Alzheimer
disease) b. December
Monteith (31) Canadian actor and singer,
known for his role as Finn Hudson on the Fox television series Glee from 2009
until his death in 2013. Born
in Calgary and raised in Victoria, he had a troubled youth involving substance
abuse from age 13 onwards, and he left school at age 16. After an intervention
by family and friends, he entered drug rehabilitation at age 19, and began rebuilding
his life. As an actor based out of Vancouver, he had smaller roles on such television
series as Stargate Atlantis and Smallville before an audition tape of him singing
"Can't Fight This Feeling" helped to land him the biggest role of his
career, Finn on Glee, introducing him to an international audience as a high school
quarterback who is at first reluctant to join the high school singing club. In
later seasons, the character had graduated but returned as a singing coach. Following
his success on Glee, Monteith's film work included the movie Monte Carlo and a
starring role in Sisters & Brothers
(cause of death, as
yet not known... autopsy pending)
b. May 11th 1982.
2014: Lorin Maazel (84)
French-American conductor, violinist, composer and music
director born to Jewish American parents of Russian origin in Neuilly-sur-Seine,
France. He was the most prolific conductor of his generation, a child prodigy
who performed with the New York Philharmonic at age 12. Over his long career Lorin
conducted more than 150 orchestras in more than 5,000 opera and concert performances
and made at least 300 recordings. He served as music director of the Cleveland
Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra,
and chief conductor of the Deutsche Oper Berlin and the Vienna State Opera. He
stepped down as director of the Munich Philharmonic only last month (sadly
Lorin has died from complications of pneumonia) b.
March 6th 1930.
El Lebrijano/Juan Peña Fernández (74) Spanish flamenco
guitartist/singer; born in Lebrija, Seville, he began to play flamenco guitar
as a child, accompanying singers such as La Paquera de Jerez in 1950, but eventually
turned to Flamenco singing. In 1964, he won the championship at the Competition
of Mairena del Alcor, one of the most important Flamenco music festivals. Within
years, he was regarded as one of the greatest voices of flamenco. A few years
later, in 1970, he started his collaboration with the guitarist Paco de Lucía.
His later musical works included Andalusi influences, with albums such as Casablanca,
Open Doors and Encuentros. There was also a tribute to his friend Gabriel García
Márquez. In 1997 the Spanish Ministry of Culture awarded him the Medalla
de Oro al Trabajo. (?) b. August
Steven Young (??) British musician-songwriter
with the electronic pop groups Colourbox and M/A/R/R/S. He and a his brother Martyn
formed Colourbox in 1982. They released two self-titled albums in 1983 and 1985.
In 1986, the band recorded The Official Colourbox World Cup Theme,
a song that Martyn said the BBC came very close to choosing as the
tournaments official song. In
1987, Steven and other members of Colourbox joined with the duo A.R. Kane to form
the influential acid-house trendsetters MARRS. The collaboration yielded just
one single for 4AD, Pump Up the Volume b/w Anitina (The First
Time I See She Dance). Pump Up the Volume became a worldwide
hit and earned the group a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Instrumental Performance
in 1989. In the years that followed the success of "Pump Up the Volume",
he became less active in music, making appearances on releases by Moose and Kid
Congo Powers. In 2012, 4AD celebrated the 30th anniversary of Colourboxs
formation with a retrospective box set that collected their various studio recordings,
mixes, singles, and albums. Steve also participated in 4AD founder Ivo Watts-Russell's
ethereal This Mortal Coil project, a fluid supergroup of sorts that featured some
of the label's most acclaimed artists. (?)
Mariano/Mariano Eusebio González y García
born in Irun; his family moved to France at the start of the Spanish Civil War
and settled in Bordeaux where Luis studied at the Conservatoire, and also sang
in cabarets, stage shows and appeared films, starting with 'L'escalier sans fin'
Luis achieved fame in 1946 with "La belle de Cadix"/"The Beautiful
Lady of Cadix" an operetta by Francis Lopez. He appeared in the 1954 film
Adventures of the Barber of Seville and Le Chanteur de Mexico. He
continued to appear in other films from 1946, including a singing role in Napoléon
and a film adaptation of Lehar's Der Zarewitsch. He also left us with many recordings
of popular song and operetta
b. August 13th 1914.
1975: Madan Mohan (51) Iraqi
film music director; born in Baghdad he went on to become a famed Bollywood film
music director of the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. He is particularly remembered for
the ghazals he composed for the film industry, mainly using the voice of India's
Melody Queen, Lata Mangeshkar and 'King Of Ghazals' Talat Mahmood and his favourite
singer, Mohammed Rafi. In 2004, Madan's unused tunes were recreated by his son,
Sanjeev Kohli, for the Yash Chopra film Veer-Zaara, starring Shahrukh Khan, Preity
Zinta, and Rani Mukerji. The lyrics were written by Javed Akhtar, and Lata Mangeshkar
was invited to once again sing the majority of the melodies composed by her dear
friend (sadly died of died of liver cirrhosis)
b. June 25th 1924.
"Lennie" Hastings (53)
jazz drummer born
in the London suburb of Carshalton. He
played in military bands during World War II, after which he played with both
Freddy Randall and Alex Welsh throughout the 50s. Following these he played in
local combos, led an ensemble in Düsseldorf and worked with Nat Gonella before
rejoining Alex Welsh. He was Welsh's drummer for well over a decade, during which
time he also recorded with Earl Hines, Rex Stewart, Eddie Davis, Ben Webster,
and Bill Coleman. In 1972 he left Welsh's group due to failing health. Later in
the decade he played and recorded with Brian Lemon, Stan Greig, Dave Shepherd,
and Fred Hunt. He played at the Pizza Express, a London club, in his later years,
and toured with Wild Bill Davison and Ruby Braff. He led his own quartet shortly
before his death
January 25th 1925.
Malcolm Owen (26) English lead singer
with The Ruts, the reggae-influenced British punk rock band, formed in 1977 and
notable for the 1979 Top 10 hit "Babylon's Burning", and an earlier
single "In a Rut", which was not a hit but was much played and highly
regarded by the UK BBC Radio 1 disc jockey, John Peel. (sadly
Malcolm died from a heroin overdose) b.
Philippé Wynne /Phillip Walker (43)
American R&B singer,
born in Detroit, Michigan, and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, he began his musical
career as a gospel singer. He is best known for his role as the co-lead singer
of The Spinners. He scored notable hits such as "How Could I Let You Get
Away", "The Rubberband Man", "One of a Kind (Love Affair)",
"I'll Be Around", "Mighty Love", "Could It Be I'm Falling
in Love", and "Then Came You" with Dionne Warwick. After leaving
The Spinners, Wynne never regained the same success, although he featured in hits
by other artists such as "(Not Just) Knee Deep" by Funkadelic. (tragically
he died on-stage of a massive heart attack while
performing in Oakland, California)
b. April 3rd 1941.
Léo Ferré (76)
Franco-Monegasque poet, composer, singer and musician. Born
in Monaco, he mixed love and melancholy with moral anarchy, lyricism with slang,
rhyming verse with prose monologues. He moved from music-hall to orchestral music,
breaking free from the traditional song structure during the 1970s, inventing
his own musical territory, powerfully dramatic and unique. He also set to music
several poems by the French poètes maudits, such as François Villon,
Charles Baudelaire, Paul Verlaine, and Arthur Rimbaud, as well as French poets
from the 20th century like Guillaume Apollinaire and Louis Aragon (?)
b. August 24th 1916.
musician, composer and arranger;
born in the Bronx, he started playing piano at age six and was performing in his
father's ensembles by age 14. He attended the University of Miami on a music scholarship
in the early 1940s, and in 1943 joined the Air Force, playing with Glenn Miller's
Air Force Band.
In the '50s he played in Lester Lanin's band and worked as an accompanist for
singers such as Judy Garland, Maurice Chevalier and Marlene Dietrich. From 1958
to 1961, he was Peggy Lee's full-time accompanist and arranger for the albums
"Anything Goes:Cole Porter" and "Peggy Lee & the George Shearing
Quartet". In 1962, Kapp Records asked him to work on writing potential hits
in the then-hot genre of bossa nova. Harnell's biggest success was with his arrangement
of Fly Me to the Moon, which was a hit in the US in 1963 and which won a Grammy
Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance. After working for Gray Advertising
as a jingle writer, from 1967 to 1973 he worked as musical director of The Mike
Douglas Show. In 1973 Harnell moved to Hollywood and worked in film score and
television composition, composing for The Bionic Woman, The Incredible Hulk, Alien
Nation, and V, for which he was awarded an Emmy in 1986. Following this he became
a faculty member at USC's Flora Thornton School of Music as an instructor in film
score composition (heart
failure) b. August 2nd 1924
Kathryn Ann "Katie"
Reider (30) American
singer-songwriter and gay rights activist, born in Cincinnati, Ohio; she began
performing her own songs publicly in the early 1990s while still a high school
student. She started singing in local coffeehouses and later at the Crossroads
Community Church in Oakley. She released her first album, Wonder, in late 1998,
followed by 3 more albums and by 2006 had won five local music awards that gained
her a huge fanbase nation. In addition to her music, Katie
was known for her activism, she spoke out about gay rights issues and was a performer
at gay pride celebrations (brain hemorrhage) b. May
Madalina Petru-Manole (43) Romanian pop
and folk singer, born in Valenii de Munte, Prahova
County. She released her debut album "Fata
draga" in 1991, this was followed by nine more, her last release being "O
9 Madalina Manole, MediaPro Music" earlier this year, 2010. (Madalina
was found dead by her husband at their house in the
early morning, of what looks like an apparent suicide)
b. July 14th 1967.
2010: Gene Ludwig (72)
American jazz organist, born in Twin Rocks, Pennsylvaniahe, Gene recorded as leader
debuting in 1962 with
his album "Organ Out Loud", this was followed by seven albums, his last
being "Duffs Blues" in 2008. He also played prolifically as a sideman
with the likes of Sonny Stitt, Arthur Prysock, Leslie
West, Scott Hamilton, Bob DeVos, Joey DeFrancesco
and many others. Live performances have included the Montreaux Jazz Festival in
Switzerland; San Francisco Jazz Festival; Birdland in NYC; and the 2003 Stanford
Jazz Festival for the Stanford Jazz Workshop. Other recent appearances include
several gigs at The Blue Note in NYC and a special appearance at the Blue Note
in Las Vegas in 2002 (?) b.
September 4th 1937.
2010: Sir Alan Charles Maclaurin Mackerras, AC, CH, CBE
(84) Australian conductor, born in Schenectady, New York. He was an
authority on the operas of Janácek and Mozart, and the comic operas of
Gilbert and Sullivan. He was the first Australian chief conductor of the Sydney
Symphony Orchestra. Alan was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British
Empire (CBE) in the 1974 New Year Honours, and knighted in the 1979 New Year Honours.
In 1978 he was presented with the Janácek medal for services to Czech music,
on stage at the Coliseum Theatre, by the Czechoslovak ambassador. In 1990 he was
awarded an Honorary Degree by the University of Hull. In 1996 he received the
Medal of Merit from the Czech Republic, and in 1997 he was made a Companion of
the Order of Australia (AC) for services to music and Australian music. In 2001
he was awarded the Centenary Medal created to mark the centenary of the Federation
of Australia. In 2003 he was made a Companion of Honour (CH) in the Queen's Birthday
Honours. In 2005, he was presented with the Royal Philharmonic Society Gold Medal,
and he was also the first recipient of the Queen's Medal for Music, announced
by then Master of the Queen's Music, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, on the stage of
the Royal Albert Hall before a Proms performance of HMS Pinafore
(sadly lost his battle with cancer)
b. November 17th 1925.
2010: Valerie Watts
(67) British bassoonist,
she started to learn the bassoon while at Wimbledon high school, before attending
the Royal College of Music in '61, after which she spent 5 years as a member of
the Sadler's Wells Opera Orchestra. Valerie became a freelance bassoon and contra
player. In the '80s she moved to Nth Yorkshire, where she had been regularly involved
with the Helmsley festival, later named the Ryedale festival and continued to
play professionally all over the country (sadly lost her
long fight with breast
Antonio Prieto (84) Chilean
actor and singer born in Iquique, he developed most of his acting career in Argentina
and Spain. His most well-known role was Don Miguel Rojo, the eldest of the three
bandit Rojo brothers in A Fistful of Dollars. Also
a popular singer, he scored an international 1961 hit with "La novia",
later known as "The Wedding" in the UK and the US. In 1995 he releaseda
a 20 Greatest Hits CD, which included such hits as "La novia" and "El
milagro". He also made a very popular Spanish version of a song from the
Italian singer Domenico Modugno called "The Violin Professor"
b. May 26th 1927.
Eric Delaney (87) British drummer, percussionist,
band leader, pioneer and must be the ultimate of drummer's drummer!! Born in Acton,
London, Eric was playing drums to live audiences at 6 and by aged 10 was in his
first group, with his mother on piano and his father on banjo. In his early teens
he was acclaimed as a "Drum Genius" taking drum command and touring
the UK with the Royal Kiltie Junior Band and the Hughie Green Roadshow. By the
time he was 16, Eric was voted Britain's Best Young Swing Drummer, and in 1941
at the age of 17, Eric joined George Shearing of the famous Ambrose Octet touring
the variety theatres of that time. Although best known as a jazz drummer, Eric
was a multi-percussionist, as well as the drums he played xylophone, timpani,
glockenspiel, military side drum, tubular bells, a variety of Chinese
gongs and tam tams and incorporated many everyday items such as brushes and whistles
into his shows over the years. Over the years Eric been voted No.1 of 8
MORE <<< (?)
b. May 22nd 1924.
2012: Marcel Curuchet (40)
Uruguayan keyboardist born in Montevideo and founding member of the rock band
No Te Va Gustar; formed in 1994. In '97 the band added new styles of music to
its repertoire such as reggae, candombe, salsa, ska and murga. The band started
to gain recognition in '98 when they won the "Third Song Festival of Montevideo"
and another competition organized by the Montevideo City Council Youth Commission.
They released their first album entitled "Sólo de noche", in
1999, which was followed by three other albums. No Te Va Gustar's third album
"Aunque cueste ver el sol"/Even if it's hard to see the sun, was released
in 2005 and the release concert attracted an audience of 10,000 people, and the
show was recorded for release on DVD later that year. In 2005 the band also did
a European tour, playing dates in more than 40 cities including Munich, Bern,
Berlin, Hamburg, Bremen, Vienna, and
Madrid (while on tour, tragically
Marcel died in a New Jersey Hospital two days after a motorbike accident on one
of the NY-NJ bridges) b. July 5th 1972.
2014: Vange Leonel (51) Brazilian singer, writer,
feminist and LGBT activist born in São Paulo in 1963; her first musical
ventures were with the post-punk band Nau, which was founded in 1985. Nau released
an eponymous album via CBS and took part in the compilation Não São
Paulo, Vol. 2, released by Baratos Afins. They disbanded in 1989, and Vange followed
with a solo career, releasing her debut album in 1991. In 2000 she wrote her first
of five theatre plays, As Sereias da Rive Gauche, that was performed in the same
year and it was was published as a book in 2002. Her first novel, Balada para
as Meninas Perdidas, was released in 2003. In a 2012 interview, she stated that
she was working on a translation to Portuguese of Djuna Barnes' 1928 novel Ladies
Almanack. (sadly Vange passed away after a long struggle
with ovarian cancer) b. May 4th 1963.
Lisa Gaye (81) American actress, singer and dancer
(Rock Around the Clock, Drums Across the River)
1933: Freddie Keppard
(43) American Jazz cornetist born in New
Orleans. He played violin, mandolin, and accordion before switching to cornet.
After playing with the Olympia Orchestra he joined Frankie Dusen's Eagle Band,
taking the place recently vacated by Buddy Bolden. The music scene proclaimed
Freddie "King Keppard" as the city's top horn player. In he accepted
an offer to join Bill Johnson's band in LA, California.
Johnson and Freddie's band became the Original Creole Orchestra which toured the
Vaudeville circuit, giving other parts of the USA a first taste of the music that
was not yet known as "jazz". While playing a successful engagement in
New York City in 1915 the band was offered a chance to record for the Victor Talking
Machine Company. This could probably have been the first jazz recording. About
1917 he settled in Chicago, which would remain his home, except for briefly
going to the East Coast to work with Tim Brymn's band about 1920. He worked in
Chicago both as a soloist and with the bands of Jimmie Noone, Johnny Dodds, Erskine
Tate, Doc Cook-for several years, Don Pasquall, and Lil Hardin Armstrong (he
suffered from alcoholism and tuberculosis in his final years, and so sadly died
largely forgotten) b.
February 27th 1890.
1947: Walter Donaldson (54) American songwriter
born in Brooklyn, New York; he published some 600 of his original songs. His biggest
hits included "How Ya Gonna Keep 'Em Down on the Farm?", "My Mammy"
(a huge hit for Al Jolson), "My Buddy", "Carolina in the Morning",
"Yes Sir, That's My Baby","At Sundown", "My Blue Heaven",
"Love Me or Leave Me", "Kansas City Kitty", "Makin' Whoopee",
"Georgia". His film credits include work on such pictures as Glorifying
the American Girl, Suzi, The Great Ziegfeld, Panama Hattie, Follow the Boys, and
Nevada (Walter retired in 1943 and died in Santa
Monica, California) b. February 15th 1893
1959: Ernest Bloch (78) Swiss-born
American composer born in Geneva and began playing the violin at age 9.
early works, including his opera Macbeth-1910 show the influence of both the Germanic
school of Richard Strauss and the impressionism of Claude Debussy. Mature works,
including his best-known pieces, often draw on Jewish liturgical and folk music.
These works include Schelomo-1916 for cello and orchestra, the Israel Symphony-1916,
Baal Shem for violin and piano-1923, later version for violin and orchestra, the
"From Jewish Life" suite for cello and piano, and Avodath Hakodesh/Sacred
Service, in 1933 for baritone, choir and orchestra. Pieces
written after World War II are a little more varied in style, though his essentially
Romantic idiom remains
(sadly died after battling cancer) b.
July 24th 1880.
Mervil Tibbett (63)
American opera singer, movie actor, radio personality
and recording artist. He sang with the New York Metropolitan Opera from 1923 to
1950. He performed roles ranging from Iago in Otello to Captain Hook in Peter
Pan. As a baritone, he is acknowledged as one of the greatest opera singers produced
by the USA, and one of the finest male voices of the past 100 years. (died
as the result of a fall in his apartment) b. November
Clarence White/Clarence LeBlanc (29) American
guitarist born in Lewiston, Maine; he started out with
his 2 brothers in a band called the Three
Little Country Boys. They
cut their first single
in 1958, which led to appearances on the Andy
Griffith Show. In late '62, the Country Boys became the Kentucky Colonels. After
the dissolution of the Colonels, he found employment as a session guitarist in
Los Angeles, playing on early records of The Monkees, and performed at night with
future Byrd Gene Parsons in the group Nashville West. Clarence contributed twangy
lead guitar to two of Gene's songs on the Byrd's 4th album Younger Than Yesterday:
"Time Between" and "The Girl With No Name". He was invited
back to play on The Byrds' next album, The Notorious Byrd Brothers, and he contributed
to Sweetheart of the Rodeo, the group's Gram Parsons-led foray into traditional
honky-tonk which has become a landmark recording. He was finally asked to join
the reconstituted Byrds in Sept '68, remaining with the band until the group was
dissolved by McGuinn in '73. Clarence remained busy throughout early '73. In addition
to more Browne sessions, he joined with Peter Rowan, David Grisman, Richard Green
and banjo player Bill Keith to form the bluegrass supergroup Muleskinner.
(Tragically died after being struck by a drunk driver. The accident occurred shortly
after 2am, while he and his brother Roland were loading equipment into their car
following a spur-of-the moment reunion gig of the Colonels) b.
June 7th 1944.
"Bill" Justis (55) American
pioneer rock and roll musician, composer, and musical arranger, best known for
his 1957 Grammy Hall of Fame song, "Raunchy".
Born in Birmingham, Alabama but grew up in Memphis,
a trumpet and saxophone player, while in university he performed with local jazz
and dance bands after which he was taken on by Sam Phillips at Sun Records where
he recorded music for himself as well as arranged the music for Sun artists such
as Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Johnny Cash and Charlie Rich. He released his
song "Raunchy" in November 1957, it was the first rock and roll instrumental
hit, and went on to be a worldwide hit. In 1961, Justis moved to Nashville where
he became a successful record producer and music arranger for both pop and country
music performers at Monument and Mercury Records and other labels. He played saxophone
on the soundtrack for the 1964 Elvis Presley film, Kissin' Cousins and that same
year took over as manager of the singing group, Ronny & the Daytonas. He also
wrote the music for several Hollywood films including the Smokey and the Bandit
(sadly died from cancer) b. October
Ertegun (71) Turkish record producer and executive
of Atlantic Records and WEA International, born in Istanbul, Turkey and moved
to America in 1935. He founded the Crescent record label, then purchased Jazz
Man Records, issuing traditional jazz recordings on Jazz Man until 1952. At Jazz
Man, Nesuhi produced classic Kid Ory revival recordings in 1944 and 1945 plus
other recordings by Pete Daily and Turk Murphy. For details on this seminal period
in Ertegun's career, see Cary Ginell's "Hot Jazz for Sale: Hollywood's Jazz
Man Record Shop".
He sold the Jazz Man label in 1952 and worked for Lester Koenig at Contemporary
Records. While there, he taught the first history of jazz course ever given for
academic credit at a major American university at UCLA. He joined Atlantic Records
in 1955 and went on to become Vice president. As a producer at Atlantic he worked
with John Coltrane, Charles Mingus, Ornette Coleman, the Modern Jazz Quartet and
many others. He also became involved with the labels rhythm & blues
and rock and roll roster, first recruiting songwriters and producers Leiber and
Stoller, with whom he had worked in California, and producing several hit records
for Ray Charles, Chris Connor, the Drifters, Bobby Darin and Roberta Flack. In
1971, Nesuhi founded WEA International, now Warner Music International. While
at WEA International, Nesuhi demonstrated tremendous independence and character,
often going against the wishes of his U.S. counterparts. In the 1980s he released
the single "Girls, Girls, Girls" by then unknown Latin-American rockers
Renegade forcing a domestic release of their debut album Rock N' Roll Crazy! (he
sadly died from complications following cancer surgery at the Mount Sinai Medical
Center in New York City) b.
November 26th 1917.
1990: Trouble T-Roy/Troy Dixon (22) American
member of the hip-hop band Heavy D and The Boyz (tragically died from an accidental
fall. He and others were merrymaking after a concert and while dancing, he lost
his balance, fell from a balcony, hit his head) b. October
Ary Groenhuijzen (50) American keyboard
player for Phil Spector's, The Teddy Bears (sadly died of
Motor Neuron Disease also known as ALS) b. ????
2000: Louis Quilico (75) Canadian
baritone opera singer;
One of the leading baritones of his day, he was an ideal interpreter of the great
Italian and French composers, especially Giuseppe Verdi. He was often referred
to as "Mr Rigoletto" in reference to the Verdi opera. During his 45
year long career he shared performing credits with opera's greatest stars. He
spent 25 consecutive seasons at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. After
his retirement from the stage in '98 he continued to perform and record, most
often with his wife, pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico, with whom he made 4
CDs. The couple also toured together extensively in concerts until Louis's death.
In 1974, he was made a Companion of the Order
of Canada (died sadly as a result of complications following
a knee operation) b. January 14th 1925.
2000: Johnny Duncan (67) American
skiffle music star. He was born in the Windrock coal mining camp overlooking the
town of Oliver Springs, Tennessee and became a British skiffle star in 1957 with
the hit record "Last Train to San Fernando". While serving in the
US Army, he was sent to the United Kingdom where he formed a small hillbilly group
in which he sang and played the guitar and mandolin, the band spent all of its
off-duty hours either playing for its own amusement or entertaining fellow GIs
and British locals at camp concerts and dances. He also met and married his wife
Betty in 1952. After his discharge and on a return trip to the UK, he went to
see Chris Barber's Dixieland Band which had turned Lonnie Donegan into a star
with his skiffle hit recording of "Rock Island Line". Barber signed
Johnny to play with his band where he stayed for a year. After which he went solo
releasing his massive hit
"Last Train to San Fernando" backed by his band "The Bluegrass
Boys". He became a regular on 6.5 Special,
the first teenage program on BBC Television and had his own program Tennessee
Songbag on BBC Radio. As skiffle faded Johnny emigrated to Australia and semi-retired
from the music scene (?) b.
September 7th 1932.
Paul Young (53) English singer and percussionist
born in Benchill, Wythenshawe, Manchester; he initially came to prominence as
the lead singer of chart band Sad Café, and later enjoyed further chart
success sharing lead vocal duties with Paul Carrack in Mike + The Mechanics. His
powerful rock voice and wide vocal range was generally assigned to handle the
heavier songs, while Carrack's pure, soulful voice was assigned to ballads and
more pop-oriented numbers. Paul provided lead vocals for the hit singles "All
I Need Is a Miracle," Word of Mouth", and "Taken In" (sadly
died of a heart attack) b.
June 17th 1947.
2007: Kelly Johnson (49)
English guitarist, singer and songwriter; one of
the original members of the heavy metal rock band Girlschool, when it was formed
from the group Painted Lady in 1978. She was a songwriter, playing lead guitar
and singing both lead and backing vocals on the group's first four albums. She
provided both a strong visual focus for the band with her tall figure and blonde
hair and an excellent musical contribution with her trenchant guitar playing.
In 1984 she left the band and relocated to LA. In 1987, she jioned the rock band
Worlds Cutest Killers, which included on rhythm guitar and vocals former
Painted Lady and The Go-Go's member Kathy Valentine. WCK changed their name to
The Renegades. In 1993, after almost ten years in the USA, she returned to the
UK to resume her role as lead guitarist of Girlschool for a much publicized reunion
tour. She remained with the band and toured incessantly until 1999, when she became
too ill to tour (Kelly sadly died after a brave
six year battle with cancer of the spine)
b. June 20th 1958.
2010: Hank Cochran/Garland Perry Cochran (74) American
country music singer-songwriter, born in in Isola, Mississippi. Since the 1960s,
Hank has been a prolific country songwriter, including major hits by Patsy Cline,
Ray Price, Eddy Arnold and others. He wrote or co-wrote songs like "I Fall
To Peices", "A Little Bitty Tear", "It's Just My Funny Way
of Laughin'", "The Same Old Hurt","The Chair", "Ocean
Front Property", Merle Haggard ("It's Not Love (But It's Not Bad)",
"Don't You Ever Get Tired (of Hurting Me)", and "That's All That
Matters". Hank was also a recording artist between 1962 and 1980, charting
seven times on the Billboard country charts, with his highest solo peak being
"Sally Was a Good Old Girl" (sadly taken by pancreatic
cancer) b. August 2nd 1935.
Cornell MacNeil (88) American operatic baritone born in Minneapolis,
Minnesota and known for his exceptional voice and long career with the Metropolitan
Opera, which spanned 642 performances in twenty-six roles. He debuted with various
companies in the United States from 1953, including the New York City Opera, La
Scala and the Metropolitan in 1959. In 1969 he became president of the American
Guild of Musical Artists. Two of his most notable roles were the title role in
Rigoletto, and Iago in Otello. Rigoletto was also the role he sang the most at
the Met, 104 times, including the Met's first telecast of that opera in 1977.
was also well-known for the role of Baron Scarpia in Tosca, a role he sang 92
times at the Met between November 2nd 1959 and December 5th 1987, which was his
last performance with the Met (?)
b. September 24nd 1922.
2011: Cuddly Dudley/
Dudley Heslop (87) English-Jamaican rock & roll singer, dancer
and actor, who came to fame on the Oh Boy! TV series, and is noted for being Britain's
first black rock & roller. Born in Kingston, Jamaica, he started performing
when very young with a "native song and dance act" for tourists. In
1947 he went to Britain where he spent a year in the play Sauce Tartare at the
Cambridge Theatre in the West End, before singing in clubs for 6 months. He then
played in Folies Bergeres at the Hippodrome, London and toured Australia in Cole
Porter's Kiss Me, Kate, before joining Sid Milward's Comedy orchestra, The Nit
Wits, supporting Max Bygraves. He became influenced by early rock 'n' roll and,
being black, with a strong voice, decided to change musical style, he also adopted
a big grin, flashy suits and snazzy ties and manager manager, Guy
Robinson, promoted him as "Bristol's answer to The Big Bopper". At this
time Dudley also a co-founded The Dominoes, with pianist Iggy Quail
MORE <<< (?) b. May
2013: Noël Lee (88) Chinese-born American
classical pianist and composer; born
in Nanjing, China, he studied music in Lafayette, Indiana, then attended Harvard
University and was also a student at the Longy School of Music in the early 1940s.
Following World War II he composed orchestral, chamber, piano, vocal, and film
music. In addition, he completed several unfinished piano works by Franz Schubert
and composed cadenzas for piano concertos by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig
van Beethoven and
served as visiting professor at Brandeis University, Cornell University and Dartmouth
received numerous awards
throughout his career, an Academy Award in Art from the American Academy of Arts
and Letters for his creative work in 1959; and from France, in 1998, the grade
of Commandeur of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, also in 1999, from the city
of Paris, the Grand Prix de la Musique (?)
b. December 25th 1924.
Alan Curtis (80) American harpsichordist,
musicologist, and conductor of baroque opera. Born in Mason, Michigan. He studied
at the University of Illinois, where he wrote his dissertation on the keyboard
music of Sweelinck, after which he studied in Amsterdam. Following an academic
career divided between UC Berkeley and Europe, he devoted his time to performing
dramatic music from Monteverdi to Mozart. He commissioned both the first chitarrone
and the first chromatic harpsichord to be built in the 20th century and in 1978
in a production of Handel's Admeto he made the first successful attempt to revive
Handel's opera orchestra, including the now widely accepted use of the archlute.
Alan also founded the European ensemble Il Complesso Barocco.
(He died in Florence, Italy)
b. November 17th 1934.
Dave Somerville (81) Canadian-American singer
and co-founder of The Diamonds. Born in Guelph, Ontario, he grew up in a musical
family in the farming village of Rockwood, then in 1947, at aged 14, he moved
to Toronto with his parents. In 1952, aged 19, he secured a position at the Canadian
Broadcasting Corporation in the engineering department as a radio operator while
still studying voice at the University of Torontos Royal Conservatory of
Music. In 1953, he, along with Ted Kowalski, Phil Levitt, and Bill Reed formed
the vocal quartet, The Diamonds. Their first performance was in the basement of
St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Toronto singing in a Christmas minstrel show; their
first recording was "Why Do Fools Fall in Love" reached No.12 in the
US in 1956, and their follow-up hit single, "The Church Bells May Ring",
reached No.14 in the US. In 1957 their "Little Darlin'" reached No.3
on the UK singles chart and No.2 in the US. They also made an appearence in the
1958 film "The Big Beat". In August 1961, Dave left The Diamonds and
began a 6 year solo career after which in the 70s and 80s he formed the group
WW Fancy and also sang with The Four Preps. In the 1990s he released his first
childrens album was titled The Cosmic Adventures of Diamond Dave. The Diamonds
have been honored and inducted into The Vocal Group Hall of Fame, The Doo Wop
Hall of Fame, The Rockabilly Hall of Fame and are recipients of Canada's prestigious
Juno Award (sadly
died fighting cancer) b. October
Roland Prince (69) Antiguan jazz guitarist
2016: Erik Petersen (38)
American punk rock musician (Mischief Brew).
1957: Serge Chaloff (33) American jazz baritone
was among the few major jazz performers on his instrument, until Serge the only
prominent baritone player in jazz was Harry Carney of the Duke Ellington Orchestra.
Originally influenced by Charlie Parker, he became the first major bebop baritonist
and opened the way for others to follow. He first became well known as one of
the "Four Brothers" reed section in Woody Herman's Second Herd. He also
played with Boyd Raeburn, Georgie Auld, Jimmy Dorsey, and Count Basie, as well
as recording as a leader. Serge's career was greatly limited by addiction to heroin
which successfully gave up (sadly Serge developed cancer
of the spine which caused his early death)
b. November 24th 1923.
1981: Harry Chapin (38) American singer
and songwriter, born in New York, known for his folk rock songs such as "Taxi,"
"W*O*L*D," and "Cat's in the Cradle". He graduated from Brooklyn
Technical High School in 1960, and was among the five inductees in the school's
Alumni Hall Of Fame for the year 2000. His debut solo album Heads & Tales,
produced the hit single "Taxi". His 4th album, 1974's
Verities & Balderdash was his most successful producing his chart topping
"Cat's in the Cradle". It was used in an episode of The Simpsons, an
episode of King of the Hill, an episode of Family Guy and was featured in Shrek
The Third. The song has also been heard many other times on television and film
ranked number 186 of 365 on the RIAA list of Songs of the Century. Harry was inducted
into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame on October 15, 2006. As well as his musical
career he was also a dedicated humanitarian who fought to end world hunger, with
his work being widely recognized as a key player in the creation of the Presidential
Commission on World Hunger in 1977. In 1987, Harry was posthumously awarded the
Congressional Gold Medal for his humanitarian work (tragically
killed when a tractor-trailer crashed into the car he was driving)
b. December 7th 1942.
1985: Wayne King (84) American
musician, songwriter, singer, orchestral leader and sometimes referred to as "the
Waltz King" because much of his most popular music involved waltzes; "The
Waltz You Saved For Me" was his standard set closing song in live performance
and on numerous radio broadcasts at the height of his career. In later years he
operated a black angus cattle farm and a car rental business (?)
b. February 16th 1901.
1988: Steve Cayter
(?) Road crew technician with Def Leppard,
Steve had been instrumental in getting Rick Allen back playing the drums after
he had lost his arm in a road accident (died of a brain
haemorrhage on stage before a show at the Alpine Valley Music Theatre
in East Troy Wisconsin)
Herbert von Karajan (81) Austrian
orchestra and opera conductor born in Salzburg, Austria-Hungary, was a child prodigy
at the piano. From 1916 to 1926, he studied at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, where
he was encouraged to concentrate on conducting by his teacher, who detected his
exceptional promise in that regard. Some described Herbert as "probably the
world's best-known conductor and one of the most powerful figures in classical
music". Among his many world engagments, he conducted the Berlin Philharmonic
orchestra for 35 years. He is the top-selling classical music recording artist
of all time, having sold an estimated 200 million records during his career. On
21 June 1978 he received the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Music from Oxford University.
He was honored by the "Médaille de Vermeil" in Paris, the Gold
Medal of the Royal Philharmonic Society in London, the Olympia Award of the Onassis
Foundation in Athens and the UNESCO International Music Prize. He received two
Gramophone Awards for recordings of Mahler's Ninth Symphony and the complete Parsifal
recordings in 1981. In 2002, the Herbert von Karajan Music Prize was founded in
his honour; in 2003 Anne-Sophie Mutter who had made her debut with Karajan in
1977, became the first recipient of this award (Herbert
died from a heart attack at his home in Anif, in the Austrian Alps) b.
April 5th 1908.
Torch MBE/ Sidney Torchinsky (82) British
arranger and a composer of light music.
He worked as an accompanist before getting a job playing the Piano with the Orchestra
of the Regal Cinema, Marble Arch, London. When the Cinema's Christie Theatre Organ
was installed in 1928, he became the Assistant Organist and took over as Chief
Organist at the Cinema in 1932. In 1934 he played the organ in a number of London
Cinemas and in 1937 he became the Chief Organist of the new Gaumont State Cinema,
Kilburn. He continued to play the Wurlitzer there up until 1940, when he was drafted
into the RAF and stationed near Blackpool and would play and make recordings on
the numerous Cinema Organs in the Blackpool area, during his spare time. While
in the RAF, Torch became the Conductor of the RAF Concert Orchestra, where he
learned to arrange music and to conduct. He conducted many orchestras and bands,
particularly those of the BBC; he was the man who created the popular BBC Light
Programme show Friday Night is Music Night, which started in 1953 and continues
to be broadcast to this day. He also conducted the BBC Concert Orchestra for nearly
every Friday Night show until his retirement. Sidney composed
many pieces for the BBC, particularly the theme tunes for radio and television
shows (?) b. 1908.
1996: John Panozzo
(47) American drummer and bass guitarist,
founder member of Styx; born on the south side of Chicago, Illinois. He and his
twin brother, Chuck, started music lessons at aged 7, John took up the drums
At the age of 12 while at Catholic school
they were part of a 3-piece band in which John played drums and Chuck played guitar,
they played weddings. In
1961, John, Chuck, and their neighbour, accordionist and singer Dennis DeYoung,
formed a band called The Tradewinds, playing local rock n roll gigs. In 1968,
Chuck switched to bass and they added guitarists / vocalists James "J.Y."
Young and John Curulewski, changing their name to TW4. The band signed to Wooden
Nickel Records and changed their name to Styx. In the mid-1990s, as Styx was about
to embark on its first tour with the classic line-up since 1983, John fell seriously
ill and began battling cirrhosis of the liver. The band dedicated their 1996 Return
to Paradise tour to him, and Tommy Shaw, who had earlier replaced Curulewski,
wrote the song "Dear John" as the band's final tribute to their drummer
and friend (he tried
for years to battle cirrhosis of the liver, but eventually died of gastrointestinal
September 20th 1948.
Hiromi Yanagihara (19) Japanese singer
and founding member of Hello! Project group Country Musume. She joined Country
Musume in 1999 along with Rinne Toda and Azusa Kobayashi (Hiromi
was tragically killed in a car accident one week before the group's first release)
b. October 19th 1979.
Celia Cruz (77) Cuban
singer; one of the most successful Salsa performers of the 20th century. Born
in La Habana, Cuba, internationally known as the "Queen of Salsa" as
well as "La Guarachera de Cuba and has twenty-three gold albums
to her name. She started out singing
on Havana's radio
station Radio Garcia-Serra's popular "Hora del Té" daily broadcast,
and made her first recordings in 1948 in Venezuela. She made her first major breakthrough
1950, when she took over as lead singer of the Sonora Matancera
orchestra, who she stayed with for the next 15 years recording and
all over Latin America. In 1960 Celia and her husaband
became citizens of the United States and in 1966 she started working with Tito
Puente which led to eight albums for Tico Records. Over
her remarkable six-decade career, she recorded more than 70 albums, won two Grammy
awards and three Latin Grammys, among numerous other accolades to her credit.
She also starred with Armand Assante and Antonio Banderas in the film The Mambo
Kings and in 1994, President Bill Clinton awarded Celia the National Medal of
Arts (she died of a cancerous brain tumor at her home in
Fort Lee, New Jersey.) b.
October 21st 1925.
Camillo Felgen (84)
Luxembourgian singer, lyricist, DJ, and television presenter;
he studied theatre and opera in Brussels and Liège. In 1946, he joined
Radio Luxembourg as a chorus singer and a French language reporter and in 1949,
he completed his theatre and opera studies. In 1951, he had his first international
hit record, "Bonjour les amies" ("Hello Friends"). The song
went on to become the theme song for his national broadcaster. In 1953, he recorded
his first German language record, "Onkel Toms altes Boot" ("Uncle
Tom's Old Boat"), in Berlin. He represented his home country in the Eurovision
Song Contest 1960 with "So laang we's du do bast", becoming the first
male contestant to represent Luxembourg and the first entrant to
sing in Luxembourgish. One
of the greatest hits of Felgen was "Ich hab Ehrfurcht vor schneeweißen
Haaren"/I Respect Your Grey Hair, a cover of singer-guitarist
Bobbejaan Schoepen, another hit was "Sag warum", in 1959. He also translated
the two songs that The Beatles performed in German, "I Want to Hold Your
Hand" and "She Loves You", in 1964. Camillo, then worked as a programme
director at the RTL (?)
b. November 17th 1920.
American jazz trumpeter; born in Princeton, Kentucky but moved to
Chicago as a child, he first worked
in the R&B scene on Chicagos South Side as a teenager. In 1968, he joined
the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, spending some time
in the AACM big band, before playing and touring with the Operation Breadbasket
Big Band. Moving to New York he
worked with saxophonists Joe Henderson, Jackie McLean, Frank Foster and Archie
Shepp among other musicians and formed his Freebop band in 1978. He nexted moved
to Washington where he worked with Lester Bowie's Hot Trumpets Repertory Company.
He was diagnosed with
1989 and given only one year to live. Happily back in Chicago he went on to form
his New Orleans inspired band, Africa Brass and wanting
to preserve the Sutherland Theatre on Chicago's South Side, in
1991 Malachi founded
the Sutherland Community Arts Initiative, a non-profit corporation and also wrote
incidental music for a play about the theatre. In
1995 he was selected as an Arts Midwest Jazz Master, selected as a Chicagoan
of the Year" in 1996 by the Chicago Tribune" for his efforts to
bring jazz back to the South Side of Chicago. In 1997 he was honored by the Chicago
Endowment for the Arts for his arts activism and his
trumpet playing has been recognized in DownBeat" magazine's annual
International Critic's Poll. He is featured on 29 recordings of which thirteen
he is the featured artist and has performed in over 15 countries around the world
of his cancer)
Bueno (64) Italian singer and folk music historian,
her research and performances of Italian folk songs, particularly those of Tuscany,
are credited to bringing a new awareness of Italian folk music. She taught herself
to play the guitar and collected folk records, generally of Tuscany origin and
worked with many artists including Francesco De Gregori who dedicated his song
"Caterina" to her. She became active at
the l'Istituto Ernesto De Martino and later the magazine Nuovo Canzoniere Italiano
b. April 2nd 1943.
Jo Stafford (90) American singer of traditional
pop music and jazz standards whose career spanned the 1930s through the early
1960s, considered one of the most versatile vocalists of the era;
she entertained the GI's in World War 2 and
recorded hits with Frankie Laine, Gordon MacRae, Johnny Mercer and released 47
solo singles. Her song "You Belong to Me" topped the charts on both
sides of the Atlantic and made her the first female singer to have a No 1 hit
in the UK singles chart. (heart failure) b.
November 12th 1917.
2010: Carlos Torres
Vila (63) Argentine folk singer and pioneer,
born in Buenos Aires; in his 40 years in show business, Carlos has played in major
festivals including the Festival de Baradero and the Festival de Cosquín.
He has made countless appearances on radio and television and was one of the first
to introduce the so-called romantic folklore, recording hits such
as "El Chango",
"Qué pasa entre los dos", "La Engañera", "Zamba
para olvidarte" and "La López Pereyra" (sadly
died after suffering a long and painful illness)
b. November 9th 1946.
Ed Lincoln/Eduardo Lincoln Barbosa de Sabóia (80) Brazilian
musician, composer and arranger known for a wide variety of styles. As a bassist,
he was present at the earliest moments of bossa nova and as a Hammond organ player,
he was foundational in establishing the sound of Brazilian jazz and space age
most widely-heard compositions include O Ganso -Ed Lincoln and D'Orlann, É
o Cid -Ed Lincoln and Sílvio César, Palladium-Ed Lincoln and Orlandivo
and Ai que Saudade Dessa Nega. His most successful arrangements include O Bêbado,
Na Onda do Berimbau, Romantic Partners and The Blues Walk, the latter in collaboration
with American trumpeter Clifford Brown. He appeared in four films: Colégio
de Brotos-1955, Vamos com Calma-1956, Na Onda do Iê-Iê-Iê-1966
and Estranho triângulo-1970. He composed the music for two films, the musical
comedy Adorável Trapalhão-1967 in which he also appeared as himself
and the musical Juventude e Ternura in 1968, working with Érlon Chaves
on the latter film (sadly died from respiratory
failure) b. May 31st
Wells/Ellen Muriel Deason (92) American
country music singer, born in Nashville, Tennessee. She began singing as a child,
learning guitar from her dad. As a teenager, she sang with her sisters, who performed
as the Deason Sisters on a local radio station beginning in 1936. At the age of
18 she married Johnnie Wright, and Kitty sang with Johnnie and his sister Louise
Wright; the three toured as Johnnie Right and the Harmony Girls. Soon they Jack
Anglin, who married Louise and became part of the band, which became known first
as the Tennessee Hillbillies and then the Tennessee Mountain Boys. In 1952, Paul
Cohen, of Decca Records, asked Kitty to record solo "It Wasn't God Who Made
Honky Tonk Angels". It was an instant hit and made her the first female country
to top the U.S. country charts, and turned her into the first female
MORE <<< (Kitty
sadly died from complications after a stroke) b.
August 30th 1919.
Bob Babbitt/Robert Kreinar (74) American
top session bassist born
with 25 Gold
and Platinum records
under his belt he is
famous for his work as a member of Motown Records' studio band, the Funk Brothers,
from 1967-72, as well as his tenure as part of MFSB for Philadelphia International
Records afterwards. Also in 1968-1970, with Mike Campbell, Ray Monette and Andrew
Smith he formed the band Scorpion. His
most notable bass performances include "War", "Signed, Sealed,
Delivered I'm Yours", "The Tears of a Clown", "Mercy Mercy
Me (The Ecology)", "Inner City Blues""Band Of Gold" (by
Freda Payne), "Ball of Confusion (That's What the World Is Today)",
"Just My Imagination
MORE <<< (sadly
Bob died while bravely fighting brain cancer)
b. November 26th 1937.
2012: Jon Lord (71)
English composer, pianist and
Hammond organ playerborn in Leicester, he was known for his pioneering work in
fusing rock and classical or baroque forms, especially with Deep Purple, as well
as Whitesnake, Paice, Ashton & Lord, The Artwoods and Flower Pot Men. He studied
classical piano from the age of five, and those influences were a recurring trademark
in his work. The raw sounds of the great American blues organists Jimmy
McGriff, Jimmy Smith and "Brother" Jack McDuff, as well as the stage
showmanship of Jerry Lee Lewis and the organ-based progressive rock played by
Vanilla Fudge were also early influences. He started his London band career in
1960 with jazz ensemble the Bill Ashton Combo, followed by Red Bludd's Bluesicians,
The Art Wood Combo, Santa Barbara Machine Head and The Flower Pot Men, before
he founded Deep Purple in 1968. Deep Purple started out an organ >>>
MORE <<< (In
2011 Jon was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, sadly he died at a London Clinic
after suffering a pulmonary embolism) b.
June 9th 1941.
2013: T.Model Ford/James Lewis
Carter Ford (89-93) American
blues guitarist, born in Forest, Mississippi. It is reported he had 26 children
and didn't take up guitar until his fifth wife left him and gave him a guitar
as a leaving present.
He began touring juke joints and other venues, and for a while opening for Buddy
Guy. In 1995, he was discovered by Matthew Johnson of Fat Possum Records, under
which he released five albums from 1997 to 2008. Since 2008, he worked with the
Seattle-based band, GravelRoad, who were longtime fans of T-Bone and they agreed
to provide support for a ten-show US tour for him through July 2008, after which
he had a pacemaker fitted, but he appeared on stage again with GravelRoad in 2008,
and also in 2009 and 2010. He had a stroke in early 2010, but despite difficulty
with right-hand mobility, managed to complete a successful tour with GravelRoad.
Also GravelRoad backed him on his 2010 and 2011 albums, The Ladies Man and Taledragger.
He suffered a second stroke in 2012, however, again he soldiered on and performed
at that year's King Biscuit Blues Festival in October (sadly
T.Model died of respiratory failure)
b. early 1920s
Johnny Winter/John Dawson Winter III (70)
American blues guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, singer, producer, best
known for his high-energy blues-rock albums and live performances in the late
1960s and 1970s. He
and his younger Edgar were both born with albinism, in Beaumont, Texas,
and in the mid 50s they appeared as a duo on a local children's show,
singing songs and playing ukulele. By the
time he was 15 he had formed a band, Johnny and the Jammers, and released "School
Day Blues" on a local Houston record label. Also in these early days he sometimes
sat in with Roy Head and the Traits when they performed in the Beaumont area.
In 1967, Johnny recorded a single with the Traits, "Tramp" backed with
"Parchman Farm" and in 1968, he released his first album The
Progressive Blues Experiment. A huge break came for him in December of 1968, when
Mike Bloomfield, invited him to sing and play a song during a Bloomfield and Al
Kooper concert at the Fillmore East in New York, he sang >>>
was found, sadly dead in his Swss hotel room just two days after his performance
at the Cahors Blues Festival in France)
b. February 23rd 1944.
Ramakrishna Vissamraju (67) Indian
playback singer and film scorer; impressed by Ghantasala Venkateswara Rao, he
took up to singing and first sing for All India Radio. His debut movie song was
Vayase Oka Poolathota in Vichitra Bandham in 1972. He went on to sing over 5000
songs, in movies as well as in Devotional Albums. The depth in his voice and the
soothing effect that his songs gives to the audience an unforgettable experience,
and unfolds the character in a movie. Most of the Top actors in the Telugu film
industry preferred him to lend his voice to their movies (sadly
he died while fighting cancer) b. August 20th 1947.
Gary S. Paxton (77) American record producer ("Monster Mash") and
singer-songwriter (Skip & Flip, The Hollywood Argyles).
Williamson (89) American jazz pianist.
2016: Bonnie Brown (77) American
1951: Harry Choates (28)
American fiddle player,
accordionist, steel and acoustic guitarist born in Louisiana and moved to Port
Arthur, Texas in the 1930s; he was one of the most influential and tragic musicians
in the history of Cajun music. By age 12 he started playing fiddle for spare change
in barbershops. He gained early professional experience playing in the bands of
Leo Soileau and Leroy LeBlanc, then left to form his own group called the Melody
Boys in 1946. His 1946 song "Jole Blonde", a top 10 hit for Harry, was
recorded by country singer Moon Mullican and became a major hit, but Harry had
waived his rights to the song and was never compensated for the success of song.
remained with the Melody Boys from 1946 to 1951, when they disbanded over Harry's
chronic problems with alcoholism (Failing
to make support payments of $20 a week for his son and daughter, he was jailed
by a judge who found him in contempt of court. After three
days of being forced to curtail his drinking habit, he began beating his head
against the cell bars and fell into a coma. He died a few days later) b.
December 26th 1922.
1959: Billie Holiday/Lady Day/Eleanora Fagan Goughy (44)
Legendary American female jazz singer, born in
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After a horrible childhood of under age prostitution,
workhouses and a spell in prison, nicknamed Lady Day by her friend and musical
partner Lester Young, Billy became a seminal influence on jazz and pop singing.
Her vocal style, strongly inspired by jazz instrumentalists, pioneered a new way
of manipulating phrasing and tempo. Above all, she was admired all over the world
for her deeply personal and intimate approach to singing. Critic John Bush wrote
that she "changed the art of American pop vocals forever.". She co-wrote
only a few songs, but several of them have become jazz standards, notably "God
Bless the Child", "Don't Explain", "Fine and Mellow, "and
"Lady Sings the Blues". She also became famous for singing jazz standards
including "Easy Living" and "Strange Fruit" (cirrhosis
of the liver) b.
April 7th 1915.
John Coltrane (40) American saxophonist
and composer, among the most important, and most controversial, figures in jazz.
in Hamlet, North Carolina, he worked in the bebop and hard bop idioms early in
his career, and helped pioneer the use of modes in jazz and later was at the forefront
of free jazz. He was prolific, organizing at least fifty recording sessions as
a leader during his recording career, and appeared as a sideman on many other
albums, notably with trumpeter Miles Davis and pianist Thelonious Monk. As his
career progressed, his music took on an increasingly spiritual dimension. He influenced
innumerable musicians, and remains one of the most significant tenor saxophonists
in jazz history. He received many awards, among them a posthumous Special Citation
from the Pulitzer Prize Board in 2007 for his "masterful improvisation, supreme
musicianship and iconic centrality to the history of jazz.".
was also beatified by the African Orthodox Church as Saint John William Coltrane
(He sadly died of liver cancer)
b. September 23rd 1926.
1971: Cliff Edwards aka
Ukelele Ike (75) American
singer, voice actor and ukelele player, born in Hannibal, Missouri. He got his
first break in 1918 at the Arsonia Cafe in Chicago, Illinois, where he performed
a tune called "Ja Da", written by the club's pianist, Bob Carleton.
He and Carleton made the tune a hit on the vaudeville circuit. Cliff enjoyed considerable
popularity in the 1920s and early 1930s, specializing in jazzy renditions of pop
standards and novelty tunes and had a number-one hit with "Singin' in the
Rain" in 1929. He became one of the most popular singers of the decade, and
appeared in several Broadway shows and recorded, in his distinctive style, many
of the pop and novelty hits of the day, such as "California, Here I Come",
"Hard Hearted Hannah", "Yes Sir, That's My Baby", and "I'll
See You in My Dreams". Cliff also did voices for animated cartoons later
in his career, and is best known as the voice of Jiminy Cricket in Walt Disney's
Pinocchio and his Jiminy
song "When You Wish Upon A Star"-1940 which won the 1940 Academy Award
for Best Original Song and went on to become an icon of The Walt Disney Company.
In 1941, he also voiced
the head crow in Disney's Dumbo and sang "When I See an Elephant Fly".
In 2002, Cliff and his recording of "When You Wish Upon a Star", were
inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame (?) b.
June 14th 1895.
1983: Roosevelt "Honeydripper"
American jazz pianist; born in in Elmar, Arkansas, and grew up near Helena but
at 15, went on the road playing piano with a barrelhouse style of blues. Like
many bluesmen of his time, he travelled around playing to all-male audiences in
sawmill, turpentine and levee camps along the Mississippi River. In 1929, he was
spotted by a talent scout while in New York. His first release was "'44'
Blues" which became a blues standard and his trademark. He started recording
on various labels, using various names including including 'Easy Papa Johnson',
'Dobby Bragg' and 'Willie Kelly'. His next stop was Chicago where he recorded
with the Honeydrippers. He lived his final years in New Orleans (heart
attack) b. January 31st 1906.
Miklós Rózsa (88) Hungarian-born
award winning composer and conductor, best known for his numerous film scores.
was one of the most respected and popular film score composers in Hollywood and
is today regarded as one of the greatest film score composers of all time. In
a career that spanned over fifty years, he composed music for nearly 100 films
including Spellbound in 1945, Quo Vadis in 1951, Ben-Hur in 1959, and King of
Kings in 1961. Miklós was a three time Oscar winner, and was nominated
a total of 16 times, making him one of the most nominated composers in Oscar history.
He also received three Golden Globe nominations and one Grammy Award nomination.
last film score was to Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid in 1982. That same year, Miklós
suffered a stroke which brought an
end to his film scoring career, though he still wrote concert pieces afterwards
(?) b. April
1996: Bryan ''Chas'' Chandler (57)
English bassist, manager and producer, born in Heaton, Newcastle; he began his
career playing bass guitar in a trio with Alan Price. After vocalist Eric Burdon
joined them the group was renamed The Animals and became one of the most successful
R&B bands ever. His most famous bass lines are the opening riffs of their
1965 hits "We Gotta Get Out of This Place" and "It's My Life".
Chas was also the most prominent of the group's backing vocalists and did occasional
songwriting with Burdon. After
the group split up in late 1966, he became manager to Jimi Hendrix and recruiting
other musicians to form The Jimi Hendrix Experience from 1966 to 1968. He then
went on to manage and produce the English rock band Slade for twelve years. During
this time, Chandler bought and ran IBC Studios for four years and launched Barn
Records (died while undergoing tests related to an aortic
December 18th 1938.
Marc Alexander Hunter (44) New Zealand rock and pop singer born
in Taumarunui; best known as the lead vocalist with Dragon, a band formed by his
older brother Todd in Auckland in 1973. They recorded two albums in New Zealand,
Universal Radio in 1974 and Scented Gardens For The Blind in 1975, before relocating
to Sydney, Australia. Dragon racked up a string of hit singles and albums between
1976 and 1979 including "Get That Jive", "Sunshine", "Are
You Old Enough?", "I'm Still In Love With You" and "April
Sun in Cuba". They also enjoyed huge success with their first three albums
Sunshine, Running Free, and O! Zambezi. (sadly
Marc died while fighting throat cancer)
b. September 7th 1953
1999: Kevin Wilkinson (41)
English drummer, born in Stoke-on-Trent, he is
credited as a former official member of several successful British pop groups,
including The League of Gentlemen - 1980, The Waterboys 198384, China Crisis
198589, and Squeeze 199596. He also appeared in some of his affiliated
bands' music videos.
Throughout his career, he was a highly regarded session musician, performing with
other artists as diverse as Fish and The Proclaimers, and Howard Jones. He also
drummed for less well known acts - including his friend Paul Griffiths, and songwriting
partner Robbie Wyborn of King Strut, who benefited hugely from his support and
his contributions on their Sacred Ground album (tragically
Kevin hung himself) b. June 11th 1958.
2002: Bobby Worth (89) American
songwriter born in
Cleveland, Ohio and
was considered a child prodigy, performing in classical concerts at ten years
of age. In his teens he was performing in Gus Edwards' vaudeville acts. In 1940,
at age 28, he moved to Hollywood, California, where he teamed up with songwriter
Stanley Cowan in 1941, and began writing for movie studios. From the 1940s onwards,
his songs were recorded by artists including Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, and Ella
His best known songs are "Do I Worry?", "(Lights
Reveille", "Tonight We Love", and "Don't You Know?" (?)
b. September 25th 1912.
Rosalyn Tureck (89) American
pianist and harpsichordist born
in Chicago, particularly associated with the music of Johann Sebastian Bach,
but had a wide-ranging repertoire. She studied at the Juilliard School of music,
later in her career, she joined the faculty at the Juilliard School. She made
her debut at Carnegie Hall playing the theremin, and for a while she played Bach's
keyboard music on a harpsichord, but later returned to playing the piano. In 1970,
she performed in Boston for the Peabody Mason Concert series. Her scores and recordings
were given to the Music Division and the Rodgers & Hammerstein Archives of
Recorded Sound, both divisions of The New York Public Library for the Performing
2005: Laurel Aitken/Lorenzo Aitken (78) Jamaica
known as "the Godfather of Ska", born in Cuba of mixed Cuban and Jamaican
descent, his family settled in Jamaica in 1938 and he went on to become Jamaica's
first real recording star. His first recordings in the late 1950s were mento tunes
such as "Nebuchnezer", "Sweet Chariot" and "Baba Kill
Me Goat". Progressing to a pre-ska shuffle, his 1958 single "Little
Sheila"/"Boogie in My Bones" was one of the first records produced
by Chris Blackwell, who founded his Island Records label that year, and the first
Jamaican popular music record to be released in the UK. Other rock and roll singles
from this period include "Low Down Dirty Girl", "Drinkin' Whisky"
and "More Whisky".
Laurel moved to Brixton, London in 1960 and recorded for the Blue Beat label,
releasing fifteen singles before returning to Jamaica in 1963. He recorded for
Duke Reid, with backing from The Skatalites on tracks such as "Zion"
and "Weary Wanderer", before returning to the UK, where he began working
with Pama Records. He recorded hits such as "Fire in Mi Wire" and "Landlord
and Tenants", which led to a wider recognition outside of Jamaica and the
UK. This cemented his position as one of ska's leading artists. He gained a loyal
following not only among the West Indian community, but also among mods, skinheads
and other ska fans. He had hit records in the UK and other countries in the 1950s
through to the 1970s (sadly
died of a heart attack) b. April 22nd 1927.
2006: Sam Myers (69) American
drummer, harmonica player, trumpeter and songwriter.
Born in Laurel, Mississippi, he appeared as an accompanist on dozens of recordings
for blues artists over 5 decades, and fronted one of the top blues bands in the
world. He began his career as a drummer for Elmore James but was most famous as
a blues vocalist and blues harp player. He was in high demand for his authentic
delta blues sound working with Jimmy Rogers, Muddy Waters, Howling Wolf, Robert
Lockwood, Jr, Little Walter, and Hound
Dog Taylor. Sam played drums with Elmore James on a fairly steady basis from '52
until James's death in '63, and is credited on many of James's historic recordings
for Chess Records. In 1956, he wrote and recorded what was to be his most famous
single, "Sleeping In The Ground" and for nearly 2 decades he was the
featured vocalist for Anson Funderburgh & The Rockets.
Just before he died, he toured as a solo artist, in Sweden, Norway and Denmark,
with the Swedish band Bloosblasters (sadly died from throat
cancer) b. February 19th 1936.
Teresa Stich-Randall (79) American opera
soprano, discovered in the late 1940s by Arturo
Toscanini, who engaged her for a series of performances with his NBC Symphony
Orchestra in New York, Arturo
described her at the time as "the find of the century". She made her
European debut in Florence and won a competition in Lausanne the following year.
This led to appearances with the Basel Opera in Switzerland. Teresa
was a regular performer with the Vienna State Opera and at the Salzburg Festival.
From '55, she was a regular at summer events at Aix-en-Provence in France, where
her portrayal of Donna Anna in Don Giovanni was highly esteemed. In 1962, the
Austrian Government awarded her the title of Kammersängerin given to esteemed
vocal artists. She made her debut at the Chicago Lyric Opera as "Gilda"
in Rigoletto in 1955. She first sang at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City
in Cosi Fan Tutte in 1961 and remained on their roster of singers until 1966 and
made her Boston debut in 1963 for the Peabody Mason Concert series (natural
causes) b. December 24th 1927.
2009: Gordon Waller (64) Scottish singer,
songwriter, guitarist, best known for being one half of the 1960's duo Peter and
Gordon; born in Braemar, Scotland, Gordon met fellow student, Peter Asher while
attending Westminster School, and they began playing together as the duo Peter
& Gordon. Peter's sister Jane was dating Paul McCartney, through this connection
they were give an unrecorded Beatles song "World Without Love", which
became a huge hit on bothe sides of the Atlantic and catapulted them to fame.
Other hits followed, including
"Woman", "Nobody I Know", "I Don't Want To See You Again",
Go to Pieces", "True
Love Ways", "To Know You Is To Love You.", "Lady Godiva",
"Knight In Rusty Armour" and "Sunday for Tea". The two split
in 1968, but stayed life long friends. Gordon pursued a solo career and also appeared
in the production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as Pharaoh.
In August 2005, Peter and Gordon reunited onstage for the first time in over 30
years, as part of two tribute concerts for Mike Smith of the Dave Clark Five in
New York City. This was followed by more complete concerts at The Festival for
Beatles Fans conventions beginning the following year and also did a world tour.
In 2007 Gordon released a solo album "Plays the Beatles",
featuring a new recording of his 60s hit "Woman" and on August 21st
2008, Peter and Gordon performed a free concert on
the pier in Santa Monica, California, briefly accompanied by Joan Baez
(cardiac arrest) b. June 4th
2010: Fred Carter Jr. (76) American
session musician, guitarist, singer, producer and composer. Born in the delta
country in Winnsboro, he began his professional career in the 1950s, his work
can be heard in the music charts across a number of genres. Based in Nashville
he was a top session guitarist, and can be heard on recordings as diverse as Muddy
Waters, Willie Nelson,
Joan Baez, Neil Young, The Band, Waylon Jennings,
Dottie Rambo, and Simon and Garfunkel. His songs have been recorded by acts as
diverse as Dean Martin and Chet Atkins. He worked on many Simon and Garfunkel
classics - most notably "The Boxer" in which he played four guitars,
including the memorable finger-picking intro and conclusion. He can also be heard
playing bass on Bob Dylan's "Lay Lady Lay". Fred was a principal member
of the band Levon Helm and The RCO All-Stars. This band was composed of Levon
Helm, Booker T. and the MG's, Steve Cropper, Donald "Duck" Dunn, Dr.
John, Paul Butterfield, and the NBC Saturday Night Live horns (sadly
died of a stroke) b. December 31st 1933.
2011: Taiji Sawada (45) Japanese
musician and singer-songwriter born in Ichikawa, Chiba; after dropping out of
high school in 1982, Taiji formed his first band, Trash, where he was the leader
and guitarist. In late 1984 he switched to bass and going by the name Ray, joined
the metal group Dementia, staying until 1985. After which he became known for
his work with the popular heavy metal band X, for whom he played bass on their
first three albums. After leaving the group in 1992 he worked with several other
bands, such as Loudness and Dirty Trashroad aka DTR.
Later he performed with Cloud Nine, Taiji with Heaven's and Taiji
& Shu Project aka TSP. On August 12th
2010, Taiji rejoined X, now known as X Japan (he was rushed
to an intensive care unit in Saipan on
July 14th, after attempting suicide by hanging himself
which left him brain dead and on life support. He died after his mother and fiancée
made the decision to turn off his life support system) b.
July 12th 1966.
Joe Lee Wilson (75) American gospel-influenced jazz singer,
born in Bristow, Oklahoma; he studied in LA before touring the West Coast and
down to Mexico. In New York in the 1960s, he worked with Sonny Rollins, Lee Morgan,
Miles Davis, Pharoah Sanders and Jackie McLean. During the 70s, he operated a
jazz performance loft in New York's NoHo district known as the Ladies' Fort at
2 Bond Street. His regular band, Joe Lee Wilson Plus 5, featured the alto saxophonist
Monty Waters and for several years the Japanese guitarist, Ryo Kawasaki, and Archie
Shepp, and Eddie Jefferson were frequent collaborators at these sessions. Joe
sang with Eddie Jefferson, Freddie Hubbard, and Kenny Dorham. He recorded a live
radio program at WKCR-FM, Columbia University, on July 16th 1972, which was released
as an album, Livin' High Off Nickels & Dimes. His rendition of "Jazz
Ain't Nothing But Soul" was a radio hit on New York jazz radio in 1975. While
based in Paris, Tokyo and the UK, he recorded regularly with the American pianist
Kirk Lightsey, including the Candid recording Feelin Good. One of his last
albums was with Riccardo Arrighini and Gianni Basso, Ballads for Trane. Joe was
inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame in November of 2010, where he gave
his last public performance (he sadly
died at his UK home in Brighton of congestive heart failure)
b. December 22nd 1935.
Gil Bernal (80) American
saxophonist described by many as having one of the most sensual sounds in Jazz.
Born in Los Angeles he
began singing and playing the tenor sax in his early teens and joined local bands
performing at parties and dances. By the age of 18, he had joined up with Lionel
Hampton, spending the next three years playing with Quincy Jones and Benny Powell,
and touring the U.S. and Canada with the band as a featured sax soloist and vocalist.
He also played sax on 1950s
and early 60s hits such
as Duane Eddy's "Rebel Rouser" and The Robins' "Smokey Joe's Cafe"
and Youngblood. After
which he did a short stint with his own band in Las Vegas, before joining Spike
as saxophone soloist, vocalist, and impressionist,
spending the next six years >>> READ
MORE <<< (sadly
died of congestive heart failure)
b. Febrary 4th 1931.
and the older sister of former BDP member Harmony. One of raps first female
emcees, she was raised the New York City borough of Brooklyn,
and was married to KRS-One and associated with his group Boogie Down Productions
(BDP) until the couple's divorce in 1992. Her
first release was the 1988 12-inch single "Hype According to Ms. Melodie",
which, like most of her records, was produced by KRS-One. While they began recording
her debut album, she and the rest of BDP appeared in the Keenen Ivory Wayans film
I'm Gonna Git You Sucka. Her only album, Diva, was released the following year.
The single "Wake Up, Wake Up" reached the Top 20 of Billboard's Hot
Rap Singles chart; the groundbreaking music video to its follow-up single "Live
on Stage" was a hit on video stations.
2012: Ilhan Mimaroglu (86)
Turkish electronic music composer and member of the
Advisory Board of Moon and Stars Project; born in Istanbul, he graduated from
Galatasaray High School in 1945 and went to study in New York supported by a Rockefeller
Scholarship. He studied musicology at Columbia University and during the 1960s
he studied in the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Center. He worked as a producer
for Atlantic Records, where he created his own record label, Finnadar Records,
in 1971. Ilham was responsible for recordings of Charles Mingus, Modern Jazz Quartet,
John Cage, Eric Salzman, Luciano Berio, Idil Biret, Meral Güneyman, Vladimir
Ussachevsky. Janis Siegel, and many others. He also collaborated with trumpeter
Freddie Hubbard on a moving anti-war statement, Sing Me a Song of Songmy and was
the producer for Charles Mingus' Changes One and Changes Two, as
well as Federico Fellini's Satyricon. Ilhan was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship
in music composition in 1971 (sadly
Ilham died of pneumonia)
b. March 11th 1926
2014: Richard Nichols (55) American
band manager, he was the longtime manager for The Roots the hip hop/neo soul band,
formed by Tariq "Black Thought" Trotter and Ahmir "Questlove"
Thompson in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He had managered the band for over 22
years from its inception in 1992, and was instrumental in every aspect of The
Roots creative, cultural, and professional life over the past two decades.
died while bravely battling leukemia)
1949: Vítezslav Novák (78) Czechoslovacian
composer, born in Kamenice nad Lipou, a small town in Southern Bohemia, and in
his late teens he moved to Prague to study at Prague Conservatory. He went on
to become one of the most well-respected Czech composers and pedagogues, almost
single-handedly founding a mid-century Czech school of composition. Stylistically,
he was a leading figure in the Neo-Romanticism movement, and his music has been
occasionally considered an early example of Czech modernism
(?) b. December
Kees (41) American
poet, painter, literary critic, novelist, playwright, jazz pianist, short story
writer, and filmmaker. Despite his brief career, he is considered an important
mid-twentieth century poet of the same generation as John Berryman, Elizabeth
Bishop, and Robert Lowell (presumed
1966: Bobby Fuller (23) American singer,
guitarist and leader of The Bobby Fuller Four. Born in Baytown, Texas, but brought
up in El Paso and he played in clubs and bars with his band The Bobby Fuller Four.
They moved to LA in 1964 and were signed to Mustang Records recording singles
including "I Fought the Law" and "Love's Made a Fool of You".
The Bobby Fuller Four, also appeared in the 1966 movie, "The Ghost in the
Invisible Bikini" as back-up toNancy Sinatra for the song, "Geronimo,"
and continued to play for the pool party scene (tragically
Bobby died in his car from gasoline asphyxiation, while parked outside his Hollywood
apartment. Police labelled it a suicide, but many think the possibility of foul
play is far more probable, as he was found with multiple wounds all over his body
and covered in gasoline)
b. October 22nd 1942.
Lionel Daunais OC (80) French Canadian
baritone singer, composer; in 1922 he performed in a student concert at the Académie
Querbes in Outremont. A year later he won first prize at the Montreal Musical
Festival. In January 1926 he made his operatic debut as Ourrias in Mireille at
the Orpheum Theatre, and in March he gave his first recital at the Ritz-Carlton
Hotel. The same year he won a Prix d'Europe which enabled him to continue his
studies in Paris with Émile Marcellin of the Opéra-Comique. In 1929
he was engaged as principal baritone at the Opera of Algiers and sang in Carmen,
Faust, Manon, La Traviata, and The Barber of Seville. In his years of composing,
singing, arranging, producing, touring and recording he received many awards including
in 1965 the 'Bene Merenti de Patria' silver medal from the St-Jean-Baptiste Society
of Montreal. In 1972 Daunais was awarded the Canadian Music Council Medal and
was appointed to the board of directors of the Opéra du Québec.
He was awarded the 1977 Prix de musique Calixa-Lavallée, and in 1978 he
was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. He was awarded the Prix Denise-Pelletier
posthumously in 1982, and is an inductee of the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame.
December 31st 1901.
Nico/Christa Päffgen (49)
German singer, composer, model, actress, and a Warhol star. She is known for both
her vocal collaboration, the spooky vocalist, on The Velvet Underground's debut
album; The Velvet Underground and Nico, and her work as a solo artist from the
late '60s through the early '80s. On her debut album, 1967's Chelsea Girl, she
recorded songs by Bob Dylan, and Tim Hardin among others. She also had roles in
a handful of films, including Federico Fellini's La Dolce Vita in 1960 and Andy
Warhol's Chelsea Girls in 1966. (Sadly died of a brain haemorrhage
after falling off her bicycle while in Ibiza) b.
October 16th 1938.
Gerry Boulet (44)
French-Canadian singer, born
in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu. He started his music career with the band Les Gants
Blancs, which by 1969 had
evolved into the blues rock band Offenbach.
They released their debut album, the first of 17 albums, Offenbach Soap Opéra,
in 1971, touring France to promote it. In 1976, the band recorded its first of
two English albums, Never Too Tender. In 1984, friction within the group led Gerry
to record his first solo album, Presque 40 ans de blues and the following year,
the band performed a farewell concert at the Montreal Forum. Gerry was diagnosed
colon cancer in 1987, but carried on working, he released his second solo album,
Rendez-vous doux, in 1989, the album won him three Félix Awards. Some songs
in this album clearly talk about his fight for life. Three
more albums, including a live album and a rock opera, were released after his
Gerry lost his brave battle with cancer) b.
March 1st 1946.
Jerry Hadley (55) American
operatic tenor, born and raised in Manlius, Illinois, of Italian and English parents
and he attended Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. Jerry was the protegé
of famous soprano Dame Joan Sutherland and her husband, conductor Richard Bonynge.
He received three Grammy awards for his vocal peformances in the recordings of
Jenufa, 2004 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording Susannah; 1995 Grammy Award
for Best Opera Recording and Candide; 1992 Grammy Award for Best Classical Album
(Jerry suffered severe
brain damage after apparently shooting himself in the head with an air rifle at
his home, he died 8 days later) b.
June 16th 1952.
2011: Sid Cooper (94) American
big band, studio musician, composer and arranger born in Montreal moving to his
mothers home in New York as a child. He went on to play a range of wind instruments,
including alto sax, clarinet, flute and piccolo with some of the biggest names
in the business including Frank Sinatra and Tommy Dorsey. He was a saxophonist
and arranger for the orchestras of Henry Jerome, for which he wrote the theme
"Night Is Gone", Tommy Dorsey 1944-49, Jimmy Dorsey, Ziggy Elman, Skitch
Henderson, and Sy Oliver, and also for other radio and television orchestras.
He became a staff musician at NBC, where he played for a retinue of variety shows
in the '50s and 60s, including Eddie Fishers Coke Time, The Steve
Allen Show, Masquerade Party, Hullaballoo and also arranged music and a longtime
member of the Tonight Show Orchestra when it was based in New York, hosted by
Johnny Carson. Sid's popular-song and instrumental compositions include "Piccolo
Polka", "Saxology", "Clarinet Cascades", "Cooper
Union", and "Eiffel Tower" (?)
b. November 2nd 1918.
Peter Appleyard (84) British-Canadian
jazz vibraphonist, percussionist and composer, born in Lincs, UK. In 1949 he moved
to Bermuda where he lived for two years, before moving to Canada, where he spent
most of his life living and performing in the city of Toronto. For many years
he was a popular performer in the city's nightclubs and hotels. He also played
and recorded with many of the city's orchestras and been featured on Canadian
television and radio programs. In the early 1970s he drew wide acclaim for his
performances with Benny Goodman's jazz sextet with which he toured internationally.
In 1976, Frank Sinatra requested Peter to join him in concert with the Count Basie
Orchestra and Ella Fitzgerald at the Uris Theatre in New York City. In 1992, he
was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in recognition of his being an "internationally
renowned vibraphonist who has represented the Canadian jazz community across North
America, Europe, the Middle East and Australia (sadly
Peter has passed away from natural causes) b. August 26th 1928.
Carline Ray (88) American singer, guitarist,
jazz pioneer and activist in womens rights; she rose to fame as a member
of the Sweethearts of Rhythm band and as a member of trumpet player Erskine Hawkins'
orchestra in 1948. She also played with the Sy Oliver Orchestra, the Duke Ellington
Orchestra and pianist/composer Mary Lou Williams. She was honoured with the Mary
Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival Award at Washington, D.C.'s Kennedy Center
in 2005, and received the International Women in Jazz Award in 2008. Carline
continued to work well into her 80s, and released her debut solo album, Carline
Ray: Vocal Sides, in April 2013, as she celebrated her 88th birthday
(Carline sadly died at Isabella House in Manhattan)
b. April 21 1925.
2014: James Govan (64) American
blues singer and percussionist, born in McComb, Mississippi, who by the age of
13 was playing the guitar and
started off in a band called The Vans. He was discovered by Fame Studio's George
Jackson and recorded with Fame's Mickey Buckins in 1969. He went on to became
a Beale Street highlight for over three decades. James was
the hero of the Porretta Soul Festival, Tribute To Otis Redding, Italy, where
he performed from 1993 to 1997. His last live performance album by James Govan
and the Boogie Blues Band was released in 1999, entitled A Night on Beale and
his last studio album, Wanted: The Fame Recordings was released in 2013
(?) b. September 2nd 1949.
Buddy Buie/Perry Carlton "Buddy" Buie (74) American
singer, songwriter and guitarist; born in Dothan, Alabama, he moved on to New
York City and moved to Atlanta, Georgia where he spent most of his career, where
he went on to become a highly influential songwriter, with 340 songs registered
in the Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI) catalog. His work includes Rock
Bottom - Wynonna Judd; Mr. Midnight - Garth Brooks; Traces
- Gloria Estefan; Back Up Against the Wall
and Homesick - Travis
David Sanborn; and
(Stormy) Carlos Santana. Most recently
John Legend used Stormy as the backing track on the single Save
Room, earning Buddy a writers credit.
(sadly died of a heart attack) b. 1941.
Karina Jensen (?) Danish singer and member of
the technobilly/glam pop band, Cartoon, best known for their 1998 Eurodance cover
of the 1958 novelty song, "Witch Doctor" by Ross Bagdasarian, as well
as for their outlandish plastic costumes and wigs used in live performances as
caricatures of 1950s American rock and roll stars. Many of their hits are Europop
covers of old rockabilly hits. (sadly died fighting
cancer) b. ????
1975: Lefty Frizzell/William
Orville Frizzell (47) American country
music singer and songwriter of the 1950s, and was an influence on later stars
Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison and George Jones. Born in Corsicana,
Texas, but moved with his family shortly after his birth to El Dorado, Arkansas,
in 1950, he was invited to perform at the Grand Ole Opry; the following year he
appeared on Louisiana Hayride in Shreveport, Louisiana, and then he and close
friend "Cowboy" Ralph Spicer began touring with country music's biggest
star of the era, Hank Williams. Handbills of the time referred to them as "Kings
of the Honky Tonks." A prolific songwriter, Lefty had four songs in the country
top ten at the same time in 1951. In 1972, Frizzell was inducted into the Nashville
Songwriters Hall of Fame, and his song "If You've Got the Money I've Got
the Time" earned him a Grammy Hall of Fame Award (sadly
died of a massive stroke) b.
March 31st 1928.
Roger Doucet (62) French Canadian tenor
born in Montreal, Quebec; he was best known for singing the Canadian national
anthem, "O Canada", on televised games of the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal
Alouettes, and Montreal Expos during the 1970s. He was particularly known for
his bilingual version of the anthem, which began in French and ended in English,
in recognition of the two languages of Canada. In 1980, he was made a Member of
the Order of Canada (sadly died after sustaining a brain
April 21st 1919.
English harmonica player; Jo Ann Kelly encouraged his early performances in the
mid-60s getting him to play at her Sunday-night sessions at Bunjies coffee shop
in the West End of London and he performed on her Retrospect LP in 1966.
In 1967 he joined The Groundhogs appearing on their debut album Scratchin' the
Surface, and following albums,
Thank Christ For The Bomb; and Split. After leaving Groundhogs he played permanently
with Simon Prager in their acoustic blues duo. He had played with Prager since
1965 and fitted in gigs with him during his stint with the Groundhogs. Later on
they became a trio when Bob Hall joined them and at various times a quartet. In
the early 70s he and Prager formed the All Star Medicine Show and they recorded
an album. During this time they also played a lot with Jo-Ann Kelly
(?) b. March 8th 1946.
**Some sources have Steve Rye's death as July 14th 1992**
2000: Mabel Scott (85) American
gospel music and R&B vocalist, born in Richmond, VI, and lived in New York
where in 1932 she began singing at Harlem's Cotton Club with Cab Calloway's Orchestra
and the dancing Nicholas Brothers. She moved to Cleveland, Ohio in 1936, then
she and pianist Bob Mosley went to England and recorded on the Parlophone Records
label. World War II forced her to stop her European tours, and she settled in
Los Angeles, where she became part of the postwar West Coast jazz and R&B
scene. In 1948 she toured and scored Billboard R&B hits with "Boogie
Woogie Santa Claus" and "Elevator Boogie".
In 1949 Mabel married her pianist, Charles Brown. In
the 50s she recorded for several labels, her final recordings were on Festival
Records as part of an Australian tour backed by Les Welch's band.
She was honored with a Pioneer Award by the Rhythm and Blues
Foundation in 1995 (?)*April
2001: Judy Clay/Judy Guions (62) American
singer; from the age of 14, she performed with the family gospel group, before
making her recording debut with the Drinkard Singers - who later became better
known as The Sweet Inspirations. After
the Drinkard Singers in 1960, she made her first solo recording, "More Than
You Know", on Ember Records. This was followed by further singles including
"You Busted My Mind", which later became successful on the UK's Northern
soul club circuit. In 1967, she teamed up with singer-songwriter Billy Vera, and
The Sweet Inspirations, to record "Storybook Children". After a further
hit duet with Billy Vera, "Country Girl, City Man", and an album together,
she returned to Stax Records. There she had further successes, this time with
William Bell recording "Private Number" which also had great success
in the UK where it reached No.8 on the UK Singles Chart. Other hits include "My
Baby Specializes", and a final solo hit "Greatest Love" in 1970.
Subsequently, she worked as a backing vocalist with Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin
and others. (tragically
she died from complications
following an auto accident)
b. September 12th 1938.
Carter (49) American folksinger- songwriter and
guitarist, his style
maybe described as "post-modern
mythic American folk music. Born in Oxnard,
California, he became one half of the duo Dave Carter and Tracy Grammer, who were
heralded as the new "voice of modern folk music" in the months before
Dave's unexpected death. They were ranked as number one on the year-end list for
"Top Artists" on the Folk Music Radio Airplay Chart for 2001 and 2002,
and their popularity has endured in the years following his death. Joan Baez who
went on tour with the duo in 2002 spoke of Dave's songs in the same terms that
she once used to promote a young Bob Dylan (sadly died of
a massive heart attack) b.
August 13th 1952.
Alan Lomax (86)
singer, guitarist, folklorist, musicologist;
one of the great field collectors of folk music
of the 20th century, recording thousands of songs in the United States, Great
Britain, the West Indies, Italy, and Spain. He began his lifework on field trips
sponsored by the Library of Congress in the middle-30s. Artists such as
Leadbelly, Woody Guthrie, and Muddy Waters made their first recordings for Alan.
He recorded Burl Ives, Memphis Slim, Pete Seeger, and Sonny Boy Williamson, and
recorded over eight hours with Jelly Roll Morton before he died, documenting the
birth of jazz by one of its greatest early masters. He received the National Book
Award in 1993 for The Land Where The Blues Began, which is an account of his work
in the American South from the 30s through the 80s (?)
b. January 31st 1915.
Sam Neely (58) American
country artist and singer-songwriter born in Cuero, Texas. He began playing guitar
at age ten. After moving with his family to Corpus Christi, he began playing in
bands, including local group Buckle. in
1968 He made an appearance on the Merv Griffin
Show and was asked to write a song for the film Tilt; though the movie was not
released until 1978, it did include Neely's "Long Road to Texas".
Neely scored a string of minor hits in the 1970s on the country and pop charts,
and released a few albums which saw sales success. In 1978, he moved back to Corpus
Christi and became the house musician for the Electric Eel. (collapsed
and died while mowing his lawn) b. August 22nd 1948.
2007: Ivor Emmanuel (79) Welsh
baritone singer and actor, he led the rendition of 'Men of Harlech' in the 1964
film Zulu and starred in many West End and Broadway musicals. Born in Margam,
near Port Talbot, Wales, and moved to Pontrhydyfen near Port Talbot as a young
child. At the age of
was cast in the musical Oklahoma! at
Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. He took part in
a Welsh language singing programme called Dewch i Mewn and from 1958 to 1964 was
lead singer on the TWW show, Gwlad y Gan ('Land of Song') and
May 1960, saw Ivor perform in the first televised edition of the Royal Variety
Performance, other performers included The Crazy Gang, Benny Hill, Frankie Howerd,
Vera Lynn, Sammy Davis Jr., Nat King Cole and Liberace. He
made his debut on Broadway
as Mr. Gruffydd, the minister, in A Time
for Singing, a musical version of Richard Llewellyn's novel How Green Was My Valley.
Ivor and his family retired to the quiet life in Benalmadena, a village near Malaga
on Spains Costa del Sol. There he was filmed for an
HTV television profile, Its My Life: Man of Song (stroke)
b. November 7th 1927.
2010: Andy Hummel (59)
American bassist and founding member of the rock
band Big Star which was formed in Memphis,
Tennessee, in 1971. Andy
played on Big Star's debut #1 Record and Radio City, both listed on Rolling Stone's
500 Greatest Albums of All Time. He wrote "The India Song" and "Way
Out West" and has co-writing credits on some of the band's most beloved songs,
including "Back of a Car," "Life is White" and "Daisy
Andy went on to become a longtime employee
at Lockheed Martin, though he still occasionally played music on the side. (sadly
died after a long battle with cancer)
2011: Lil Greenwood (86) American
vocalist born in Pritchard Alabama; she joined Roy Milton's Solid Senders at the
end of the 40s, and recorded r&b and blues singles in her own name during
the early 50s She recorded 'Mercy
Me' in 1954 with The Lamplighters, 'Monday Morning Blues' in 1952 with Little
Willie and The Four Jacks. She joined Duke Ellington in 1956 and is featured on
Ellington's album My People, but her career as a recording artist in her own right
was highlighted by more R&B-oriented sides. She was one of many California-based
singers in these years recording in a style intersecting jazz with blues and a
bit of gospel, forming a dominant part of post-war R&B before that gave way
to doo wop and rock & roll. After her stint in Ellington's band ended, Lil
recorded sporadically for labels like NRC, Reprise, and Tangerine, and made some
appearance on TV series, including The Tonight Show, Good Times, and The Jeffersons.
A compilation of her '50s R&B sides, Walking & Singing the Blues, came
out on Ace in 2002 (?)
b. November 18th 1924.
2011: Karen Khachaturian (90)
born in Moscow, his studies under Genrikh Litinsky at the Moscow Conservatory
were interrupted by a term of duty in the entertainment division of the Red Army.
Resuming his studies in 1945, he worked with Dmitri Shostakovich and Nikolai Myaskovsky.
In addition to the Violin Sonata-1947, his works include a Cello Sonata -1966,
a String Quartet-1969, four symphonies -1955, 1968, 1982, 1991) and a ballet,
Cipollino -1973, as well as various other orchestral works and music for the theatre.
His works have been recorded by some of the greatest artists of the 20th century,
including David Oistrakh, Jascha Heifetz, Mstislav Rostropovich, and Vladimir
b. September 19th 1920.
Mikhail "The Pot" Gorsheniov (39) Russian punk rock
singer and composer born in Boksitogorsk; in 1988 together with his classmates
he formed the horror punk, hard rock band Korol i Shut (King and Jester). The
band's music consisted of various elements of punk rock, hard rock, art rock and
gothic rock and went on to become a number one rock band in Russia. They were
the most successful and well-known Russian punk and hard rock act of the decade
from 2001-2011 and released 16 albums from
Stone In The Head in 1996 to TODD. Act 2. At the Edge in 2012. Korol i Shut
had many nominations for most every Russian music award and won almost all of
them. Mikhail also worked in theatre and had a lot of collaborations with other
Russian rock musicians (tragically he died from a drug overdose)
b. August 7th 1973.
Lionel Ferbos (103) American jazz trumpeter
born in New Orleans, Louisiana. During his long career, Ferbos worked with
some of the giants of early traditional jazz and in later years, with widely recognized
contemporary revivals of the old style music like the original stage band of the
off-Broadway hit One Mo Time.
Lionel also played at all of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festivals. His
first professional music jobs were in the early 1930s with society jazz bands
like the Starlight Serenaders and the Moonlight Serenaders, performing at well-known
New Orleans venues like the Pythian Roof Garden, San
Jacinto Hall, Pelican Club, Autocrat Club,
Southern Yacht Club and the New Orleans Country Club. In 1932, he joined Captain
Handys Louisiana Shakers and later backed blues singer Mamie Smith while
playing with the Fats Pichon Band. In the 1940s, he played on Lake Pontchartrain
at the Happy Landing and Mama Lous, and in the '50s he worked with Harold
Dejan at the Melody Inn, where he recorded with the Mighty Four.
In the 60s he played with Herbert Learys Orchestra. Because of his
ability to read sheet music, he found himself in demand, and worked into his 100s,
retiring in 2013 at the age of 102. Despite his long career, Lionel made few early
recordings, after he joined the Ragtime and the Palm Court bands, he was recorded
on several CDs on the GHB label. He
made 8 tours of Europe with the New Orleans Ragtime Orchestra and
was featured on other recent recordings with New Orleans headliners on specialty
labels and he was trumpeter with the Ragtime on the soundtrack of the 1978 movie
Pretty Baby. In 2003 Lionel was honored with the Big Easy Lifetime Achievement
Award (?) b. July 17th 1911.
Tamás Somló (68) Hungarian
multi-musician, singer, artist and composer born in Budapest. He is mostly famous
for having been a member of the Hungarian rock band Locomotiv GT and for composing
several successful songs.In 2004 he was honored with Order of Merit of the Republic
of Hungary (sadly died fighting
cancer) b. November
1941: Lew Fields/Moses Schoenfeld (74) American
vaudeville star, actor,
comedian, theatre manager and producer. He was half of the great comic duo Weber
and Fields, the other half being Joe Weber. The two toured successfully for many
years, becoming one of the most popular and profitable acts in vaudeville. In
1896, the partners opened the Weber and Fields Music Hall, where they produced
very successful burlesques of popular Broadway shows. In the music hall's casts
were some of the greatest performers and comics on the American stage, including
Lillian Russell, Fay Templeton and DeWolf Hopper. Some of their routines were
Pousse Cafe, Hurly Burly, Whirl-I-Gig, Fiddle-Dee-Dee, Hoity-Toity, Twirly Whirly
and Whoop-de-Doo. The duo separated in 1904, and Fields took over operations at
the music hall. Lew also went on to produce many musicals. In 1923, he and Weber
reunited for a short film made by Lee DeForest featuring a recreation of their
famous pool hall routine. They also reunited for the 27 December 1932 inaugural
show at Radio City Music Hall, which proved to be the last stage appearance of
the two as a team (?)
b. January 1st 1867.
Roy Hamilton (40) American singer and
member of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame; born in Leesburg, Georgia, he moved
to Jersey City in 1943. During the mid to late '50s, he was famed for his dramatic,
searing voice and treatments of such songs as "You'll Never Walk Alone,"
"If I Loved You," "Ebb Tide," and "Unchained Melody".
He also appeared in the film, Let's Rock, in 1958. His last hit record, "You
Can Have Her" came in 1961, and was followed by the album Mr. Rock And Soul
in 1962. Roy continued to perform and record until his death (sadly
died not long after suffering a stroke)
b. April 16th 1929.
1977: Gary Kellgren (38)
American sound pioneer, audio engineer and co-owner Record Plant studios; he began
working at Apostolic Studios, Scepter Studios, and Mayfair Studios, Mayfair Studios
were the best in New York, and Gary was the king of the advanced eight-track board.
He has worked with musicians such as John Lennon, Ringo Starr, George Harrison,
Mick Jagger, Ron Wood, Bill Wyman, Jimi Hendrix, B.B. King, Bobby Goldsboro, The
Animals, Stevie Wonder, Carole King, Frank Zappa, Velvet Underground, Sly
and the Family Stone, CSNY, Rod Stewart, Ravi
Shankar, Keith Moon, Barbra Streisand, and Neil Diamond. He has also worked with
producers such as Wes Farrell, Tom Wilson, Chas Chandler, Jack Douglas, Robert
Margouleff, Phil Spector, and Bill Szymczyk (tragically
Gary drowned in his swimming
pool at his home in Hollywood)
b. April 7th 1939.
Artie Traum (65) American
folk singer, award-winning guitarist, producer and songwriter, born in the Bronx.
His work appeared on more than 35 albums. He produced and recorded with The Band,
Warren Bernhardt, Pat Alger, Tony Levin, John Sebastian, Richie Havens, Maria
Muldaur, Eric Anderson, Paul Butterfield, Paul Siebel, Rory Block, James Taylor,
Pete Seeger, David Grisman, Livingston Taylor, Michael Franks and Happy Traum,
among others. He toured in Japan, Europe and the USA (sadly
died after battling cancer) b. April 13th 1943.
2009: Ria Brieffies (52) Dutch
singer born in Lutjebroek, sang in various bands, including the VIPs. In 1979
she joined the newly-formed girl group Dolly Dots, who went on to become one of
the most popular groups of the 1980s in the Netherlands. The band also enjoyed
some success in Germany and Belgium. The single "Love Me Just a Little Bit
More", featuring Ria on lead vocals, topped the Dutch singles chart in 1984.
The group split in 1988, Ria pursued a solo career and in 1989 she recorded "Love
Always Finds a Reason", a duet with American singer Glenn Medeiros which
reached the Dutch top 20. She later performed with her own jazz group, the Ria
Brieffies Kwintet. Ria and the Dolly Dots reunited in 2007 for a tour which included
three concerts to sell-out audiences at the Ahoy Arena in Rotterdam (Sadly
died of lung cancer) b. February 23rd 1957.
2013: Faye Hunter (59) American alternative
rock bassist, vocals and founder member of the group Let's Active, formed in Winston-Salem,
North Carolina in 1981. They played their first performance with their friends
R.E.M. and recorded the EP Afoot in 1983 and the full-length Cypress the following
year, after which Faye left the band. In 1986 she returned to contribute to Let's
Active's third album, Big Plans for Everybody (tragically
died of an apparent suicide) b.
2014: George Riddle (78)
American country musician and songwriter, born in Marion and
moved to Nashville in 1960. He soon met and teamed up with George Jones, and founded
The Jones Boys, George's famous touring band.
Also along side this, he pursued solo recording career throughout the '60s and
toured with numerous country legends on package tours. In his later years, he
was a frequent sight on stage at the "Grand Ole Opry" as a member of
Bill Carlisle's band and performed with him until shortly before Carlisle's death
in 2003. After Carlisle's death, George returned to Marion, where he hosted "Classic
Country Jamboree," a weekly radio show on 99.3 FM WCJC ()
b. September 1st 1935.
Rod Franks (58) English
trumpeter, born in Shipley, Yorkshire; he took up the cornet at the age of six,
and went on to play in the Hammonds, Brighouse and Rastrick and Black Dyke brass
bands. He studied at the Royal Northern College of Music; after graduation he
was appointed principal trumpet of the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. He returned
to the UK to become principal trumpet of the Philip Jones Brass Ensemble and went
on to be a founder member of the English Brass Ensemble and London Brass, and
was also artistic director of the LSOs brass ensemble. In 1988, until his
untimely death, Rod played with the London Symphony Orchestra for 25 years, 23
of which as principal trumpet. Even though, in 2002 Rod had a brain tumour removed,
after which he suffered from epilepsy, facial palsy and hearing loss, he bravely
fought back and played on. (tragically while
traveling as a passenger, Rod died
in a car crash on the A1 in Nottinghamshire) b. May 31st 1956.
André Isoir (81) French organist; he at the École César-Franck
and at the Paris Conservatoire where he won the first prizes in organ and improvisation
in 1960. In 1965 he won the improvisation competition in St Albans, UK, and, in
three successive years, he won the competition in Haarlem, earning the "Challenge
Award," the only French interpreter to have achieved this distinction since
the inception of the competition in 1951. He was organist titulaire at St-Médard
in Paris from 1952-1967 and at St. Severin in 1967. Since 1973 he has been titulaire
/ head organist at the ancient Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés in Paris.
In 1974 he was appointed to the organ staff at the Conservatoire d'Orsay, in 1977
promoted to the rank of National School of Music. He became a full professor in
January 1978 and remained at Orsay until 1983, when he was appointed to the Conservatoire
National de Region de Boulogne-Billancourt, where he taught organ until 1994.
He has recorded some sixty discs, notably for Calliope Records. Among his many,
many awards, his recordings have been awarded the Grand Prix du Disque in 1972,
73, 74, 75, 77, 80, 89 and 91 as well as the «Président de la République»
prize for "Le Livre d'Or de lOrgue Français"
b. July 20th 1935.
Lawrence Minors (73) Bermudian calypso bassist and a popular member
of Bermudas shrinking fraternity of veteran calypso artists. He played with
the famous Bermuda Strollers, one of the islands internationally known acts
that grew out of the heyday of performers on the local hotel circuit.
(?) b. 1943.
Bijoya Chaudhuri (90) Indian Rabindra Sangeet singer, born in Shibsagar,
Assam, but grew up in Sylhet. From her first 78rpm in 1965, she recorded consistently
with HMV and later with Music India. Bijoya also authored a cookbook, 'Rannagharer
Saat Kaahan', which contains some of her original recipes. (?)
1990: Joe Turner (82) American
jazz pianist born
in Baltimore, he was one
of the masters of the stride piano style associated with Harlem, New York City.
Joe got his first big musical break in 1928 with his hiring by the Benny Carter
Orchestra. He also played with Louis Armstrong in 1930. He was drafted in World
War II, and played piano in the Army orchestra directed by Sy Oliver. After the
war, he settled in Europe. He had lived in Paris since 1962 and often played at
La Calavados, a night club on the Champs Elysees (sadly
died of a heart attack) b. November 3rd 1907.
1993: Richard Tee/Richard Ten Ryk (49) American
pianist, studio musician, singer and arranger. He
graduated from the High School of Music and Art and attended the Manhattan School
of Music. After which he went on to become a much in demand session musician,
recording with 100s of artists including Bernard Purdie, Bob Marley, Shirley Scott,
Quincy Jones, Aretha Franklin, King Curtis, Roberta Flack, Dionne Warwick, Billy
Idol, Lou Rawls, Manhattan Transfer, Diana Ross, Daryl Hall & John Oates,
Hubert Laws, Average White Band, Van McCoy, Eric Gale, Tom Scott, Paul Simon and
so many others. He also recorded 5 albums with Steve Gadd, 4 albums with Hank
Crawford, 5 with Cornell Dupree, and 9 with Grover Washington, Jr. Besides his
busy studio and session career, Richard led a jazz ensemble, the Richard Tee Committee,
and was a founding member of the New York-based jazz funk band Stuff recording
7 albums and he also recorded 7 solo albums
died after battling prostate cancer) b. November
Gus Dudgeon (59) British
engineer, and long time collaborator with Elton John and the inventor of audio
sampling as a musical device. He is best known for his collaborations with the
songwriting team of Elton John and Bernie Taupin. He was an essential part of
Elton's pop success, overseeing the recording of such Top 10 singles as "Rocket
"Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me", "Crocodile
"Goodbye Yellow Brick Road". He also recorded David Bowie's 1969 single
"Space Oddity," which wasn't a hit until re-released in 1973. Whilst
working with Elton, Gus's other main priority was with Charisma Records band Audience
but he also produced Chris Rea, Ralph McTell, Lindisfarne, Elkie Brooks, Joan
Armatrading, Fairport Convention, The Sinceros, The Beach Boys and Steeleye Span.
In the 1980s he built Sol Studios. (Tragically died in a
car accident together with his wife, when he fell asleep at the wheel of his car
on a motorway, crashing down an embankment at speed and drowning in a ditch)
b. September 30th 1942.
2004: Jerry Goldsmith (75) American
pianist, musical creator and director of films & TV; one of the most prolific
film and television composers, with almost 200 scores to his credit, as well as
being a consistent award winner in both mediums. Some of his distinguished film
scores, most of which were Oscar nominated, include Freud, A Patch of Blue, The
Blue Max, The Sand Pebbles, Planet of the Apes, Patton, Escape from the Planet
of the Apes, Papillon, Chinatown, The Wind and the Lion, The Omen, Logan's Run,
Islands in the Stream (acknowledged by Goldsmith as his own personal favorite),
The Boys from Brazil, Capricorn One, Alien, The First Great Train Robbery, Star
Trek: The Motion Picture, Twilight Zone: The Movie, Lionheart, The Russia House,
First Blood, Rambo: First Blood Part II, Rambo III, Total Recall, Medicine Man,
Basic Instinct, Hoosiers, The Edge, The 13th Warrior and The Mummy. (cancer)
b. February 10th 1929.
Patrick Sherry (29)
British lead singer with Bad Beat Revue (died
after a stage dive went wrong during a gig at the Warehouse in Leeds)
2005: Long John Baldry (64)
British blues singer,
in London, Long John begun his career playing folk and jazz in the late 50s, he
toured with Ramblin' Jack Elliott before moving into R&B. His strong, deep
voice won him a place in the influential Blues Incorporated, following which he
joined Cyril Davies' R & B All Stars. After Davies' death, Long John fronted
the Hoochie Coochie Men, which also included future superstar Rod Stewart, who
later joined Baldry in Steam Packet. After a brief period with Bluesology (which
boasted a young Elton John on piano & keyboards), Long John decided to go
solo and record straightforward pop. Already well known on the music scene, he
nevertheless appeared an unusual pop star in 1967 with his sharp suits and imposing
6foot 7inch height >>>
More <<< (sadly
John died from a severe chest infection) b.
January 12th 1941
Michael Chapman (70) British
bassoonist and reed-maker;
his playing, characterized by an ability to weave long, sustained, singing lines
and deliver powerful utterances, has influenced subsequent generations of British
bassoonists, including Rex Liu and Joseph Niesyto. He studied at the Royal College
of Music in London, after which, he joined the London Philharmonic Orchestra in
1959 as second bassoon. In 1962, he won an Arts Council scholarship and left the
London Phili to study with the great Italian bassoonist Enzo Muccetti at the Arrigo
Boito Conservatory in Parma. Upon returning to England, he served as principal
bassoonist of the newly formed Northern Sinfonia, where he stayed for almost 15
years. In 1978, he became principal bassoonist of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
and he held this post for the next 21 years. When
he to his Northumberland home town of Corbridge, he set about organising a small
chamber group, the Broadwood Ensemble, with retired Northern Sinfonia musicians
and other colleagues. (?)
b. August 3rd 1934.
2006: Herbert Kalin (72)
American singer, one half of the duo The
Kalin Twins, comprising
of twins Hal and Herbie Kalin. They remain the archetypal one-hit wonders with
their only Top 10 chart hit - "When"
in 1958. It topped
the UK Chart, and got to No.5 the US and sold over two million copies in the process.
It remained in the UK listings for eighteen weeks, five of which were at No.1,
they had no further UK chart entries.
and Herbie were the first set of twins to reach No.1 in the UK as a duo, followed
years later by The Proclaimers. They were supported by Cliff Richard on their
only UK tour. Their second single, "Forget Me Not," reached Number 12
in the US Billboard chart later in 1958. (sadly
Herbie died of a heart attack) b. February 16th 1934.
Edgerton (29) American
pioneering Baltimore female Hip Hop DJ, has been on the scene since her early
teen years and is known as the Club Queen for her intense club mixes. Khia began
interning at 92Q when she was 18, and worked her way through the ranks at the
station until she earned a co-hosting position in 1998. The show, along with her
co-host Squirrel Wyde was the number one radio show in all of Baltimore (died
as a result of head and neck injures that occured in her swimming pool)
b. October 19th 1980.
Gangubai Hangal (96) Indian
singer of the khyal genre of Hindustani classical music and known for her deep
and powerful voice. Born in Dharwad and her family moved to Hubli in 1928 so that
Gangubai could study Hindustani music. Her
mother's family was considered to be of low social status and for women of her
generation singing was not considered appropriate employment; she struggled against
this prejudice and made a career. She performed all over India and for All India
Radio stations until 1945. She had initially performed light classical genres,
including bhajan and thumri, but concentrated on khyal. Later, however, she refused
to sing light classical, saying she sang only ragas. Gangubai
served as honorary music professor of
the Karnatak University. She gave her last concert in March 2006 to mark her 75th
career year. (She had overcome bone marrow cancer in 2003,
but 6 years later sadly died of a cardiac arrest)
b. March 5th 1913.
2009: John Collins Dawson IV/Marmaduke (64) American
guitarist, singer and songwriter; born in Detroit, brought up in New York, but
went to San Francisco Bay Area in the mid 60s to pursue his musical dreams on
the folk and psychedelic rock scene. He soon became part of the of Mother McCree's
Uptown Jug Champions, a jug band that included Jerry Garcia and several other
future members of the Grateful Dead. It is here where he also met fellow guitarist
In 1967, John decided that it was his life's mission to combine the psychedelia
of the San Francisco rock with his beloved electric country music and by 1969,
he had written a number of country rock songs, so with Jerry Garcia the two began
playing coffeehouse concerts together while the Grateful Dead was off the road.
By the summer of '69 John and Jerry decided to form a full band, David Nelson
was recruited from Big Brother to play electric lead guitar, Robert Hunter on
electric bass and Grateful Dead Mickey Hart on drums. This
was the original line-up of the band which became known as the New Riders of the
Purple Sage. In 1970 and 1971, the New Riders and the Grateful Dead performed
many concerts together. John also appeared as a guest musician on three Grateful
Dead albums Aoxomoxoa, Workingman's Dead, and American Beauty and he co-wrote
the Dead's "Friend of the Devil". Buddy Cage replaced Jerry Garcia as
the New Riders' pedal steel player, John and David Nelson led a gradually evolving
lineup of musicians in the New Riders of the Purple Sage, playing their psychedelic
influenced brand of country rock and releasing a number of studio and live albums.
In 1982, David Nelson and Buddy Cage left the band. John Dawson and the New Riders
carried on without them, taking on more of a bluegrass influence with the addition
of multi-instrumentalist Rusty Gauthier to the group. John continued to tour with
the band and released the occasional album, until their eventual retirement in
1997. John relocated to Mexico to become an English teacher and made several guest
appearances at the revival of the New Riders concerts in the mid 2000s onwards
in Mexicao with stomach cancer)
b. June 16th 1945
2009: Marcel Jacob (45)
Swedish musician; best known as the bassist in the hard rock bands Talisman and
Last Autumn's Dream. In 1978, he formed the band Rising Force together with guitarist
Yngwie Malmsteen. Three years later he joined the band Force, which later changed
its name to Europe, replacing John Levén, who took his place in Rising
Force. During his time in Force, Marcel wrote the song "Black Journey for
My Soul" together with vocalist Joey Tempest. The song was eventually included
on Europe's second album Wings of Tomorrow, retitled "Scream of Anger".
After spending three months in Force, he traded places with John Levén
again, who apparently had issues with Malmsteen. In
1987 Marcel played on the album Total Control, the debute solo album released
by Europe guitarist John Norum; Marcel also co-wrote several of the songs included
on that album. Two years later he formed the band Talisman with Jeff Scott Soto,
releasing 13 albums over the next . In 2005 Marcel joined the Swedish/German hard
rock band Last Autumn's Dream for its second studio album . He played on 8 of
their albums, the last being Dreamcatcher in 2009. Over the years Marcel has played
with many artists and bands including Human Clay, Humanimal, Meldrum, Tommy Denander,
The Poodles and Tommy Denander (sadly Marcel was found dead
from suicide in his home in Kristineberg, Stockholm)
January 30th 1964.
2010: Anthony Rolfe Johnson
tenor, born in Tackley in Oxfordshire, he studied at the Guildhall School of Music
and Drama. He first appeared in opera in the chorus and in small roles at the
Glyndebourne Festival between 1972 and 1976. His major operatic debut was in Iolanthe
in 1973 with the English Opera Group. He wnet on to perform at the world's major
opera houses, including the English National Opera, Royal Opera House, Covent
Garden, La Monnaie in Brussels, La Scala, Milan, the Metropolitan Opera, New York,
the Vienna State Opera, and the Paris Opera.
Anthony performed in Handel's oratorios, sang the role of Evangelist in J. S.
Bach's St John Passion and St Matthew Passion, and sang solos in Haydn's The Seasons
and The Creation. Operas he recorded include Mozart's The Magic Flute, Gilbert
and Sullivan's The Mikado, Mozart's Idomeneo and La clemenza di Tito, and Britten's
Peter Grimes as well as appearing in the War Requiem, amongst many others. (Alzheimer's
disease) b. November 5th 1940.
Doug Oldham (79) American legendary gospel music singer; Doug recorded
at least 65 albums during his five-decade career, and was inducted into the Gospel
Music Hall of Fame in 2006. He was the recipient of two GMA Dove Awards, an Angel
Award, a Gold Album, an Honorary Doctorate, and was named an Honorary Colonel
of Alabama. In 2007, Liberty University named a recital hall after him and set
up a scholarship fund in his honor at the Center for Worship. (complications
from a fall) b. November 30th 1930
2011: Allison Harte/Prudence Dykstra (58)
American radio DJ and pioneer opening the doors for many female broadcasters,
she was especially noted for her tenure at Classic Rock 97LAV. She entertained
West Michigan for nearly three decades where she become one of the best known
rock radio personalities of her generation. She
burst onto the radio scene in 1980, anchoring the night shift as one of the Air
Aces for WLAV-FM and helped propel LAV-FM to ratings dominance for much of that
decade and where she developed a loyal following. Allison also worked at WKLQ
and finished her radio career at the Fox 101.3, when she left radio in 2007
(Allison sadly died in hospital when taken off a life support system. Tragically
she had been found
unconious by her husband, in the swimming
pool a few days earlier, at their home in Cannon Township on July 19th)
Milly Del Rubio/Mildred Boyd (89) American
singer-guitarist; youngest triplet she and her sisters Edith,
and Elena were born in the Panama Canal Zone. The girls grew up in Ancón
and Washington D.C. and went on to become The Del Rubio triplets. Their stage
name comes from the colour they dyed their hair; the word "rubio" means
"blonde" in Spanish. Grammy winner Allee Willis is credited with discovering
the Del Rubio Triplets in 1985 after which they made various television appearances
such as Married.. with Children, Full House, The Golden Girls, Night Court and
Pee-wee's Playhouse wearing bouffant hair-dos and gaudy blue eyeshadow. They often
appeared scantily clad, usually showing off their legs, despite the fact that
they were in their sixties at the time. They are often remembered for their contribution
of "Winter Wonderland" to the Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special
that originally aired in 1988. They also briefly appeared in the motion picture
Americathon, playing "America the Beautiful" behind several posing bodybuilders.
They also appeared in Sliders, season 1 episode 9, "The King Is Back"
as themselves, performing "Whip It". In the late 1980s they were featured
in a McDonald's fast food advertisement. The
three performed until Eadie was diagnosed with cancer in 1996; after her death
in 1996, Elena and Milly never again performed but lived together for five years
until Elena died of cancer in 2001
August 23rd 1921.
Verda Erman (70) Turkish
pianist; she began her music education at the Istanbul Municipality Conservatory
and continued her education at the Paris Conservatory. After returning to Turkey,
she played piano concertos with the Presidential Symphony Orchestra. In November
1963, she was the top prize winner of Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud International
Piano Competition of Paris. She won the second prize in Canada International Piano
Competition in 1965. After 1971, Verda was invited to perform at all the top music
venues around the world (sadly died from leukemia)
2014: Gene Walker (76) American
jazz and rock saxophonist, he took up the instrument as a student at Champion
Middle School, Near East Side, Columbus, Ohio. In his career, which took him around
the world, he shared the stage with the likes of Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson,
Brook Benton, Wilson Picket, Aretha Franklin, Etta Jones, Benny Green, Wild Bill
Davis, Bobby Shew, Jimmy Scott, Charles Earland, Lloyd Price, Jimmy Reed, The
Isley Brothers, Neil Diamond, Melba Moore, Billy Daniels, Charli Persip, Elvin
Jones, Irene Reid and others. Gene , along with Curtis
King opened for the Beatles in 1965 at the New Yorks Shea Stadium. He has
also made a number of distinguished appearances, including at Carnegie Hall and
Town Hall, NY; Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club, London, U.K.; North Sea Jazz Festival,
The Hague, Holland; and Umbria Jazz Festival, Italy. In 2012, Gene was inducted
into the Lincoln Theatre Walk of Fame on E. Long Street
(?) b. February 14th 1938.
William Schoen (94)
American violist, born in Czechoslovakia and raised in Cleveland;
in his teens he toured with Stokowski's All-American Youth Orchestra and during
the war he was a member of the U.S. Marine Band for four years as a violist and
performed at the White House. Following military service, he was a solo violist
for eight years with the CBS Concert Orchestra in New York. In 1963-64, he was
principal violist of the Philadelphia Orchestra, where he played as a soloist.
His distinguished chamber music career included membership in the Guilet Quartet.
He was an original member of the Claremont String Quartet which toured all over
the world. He appeared on the Chicago Symphony Chamber Music Series and has taught
violin, viola, and chamber music for many years (sadly
died with complications from a stroke) b. 1920
Lewis "Lewie" Steinberg (82) American
Hall of Fame bassist, born in Memphis, Tennessee. In 1962 he became a founding
member and fist bassist in Booker T. & the M.G.'s, the instrumental R&B/funk
band that was influential in shaping the sound of Southern soul and Memphis soul.
In the 1960s, as a members of the house band of Stax Records, he played on recordings
by artists such as Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Bill Withers, Sam & Dave,
Carla Thomas, Rufus Thomas, Johnnie Taylor and Albert King. The band also released
instrumental records under their own name, of which the best known is the 1962
hit single "Green Onions". As originators of the unique Stax sound,
the group was one of the most prolific, respected, and imitated of its era. By
the mid-1960s, bands on both sides of the Atlantic were trying to sound like Booker
T. & the M.G.'s. He is featured on "Green Onions" b/w "Behave
Yourself" and the Green Onions album, and the follow-up album Soul Dressing
in 1965, but left the band soon after. Lewie was inducted into the Rock and Roll
Hall of Fame in 1992 and received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.
Then, on November 14th 2010, he and members of his family were honored with a
Brass Note on Beale Street's Walk of Fame, in Memphis
(sadly Lewie died while fighting cancer)
b. September 13th 1933.
Fiorito/Teodorico Salvatore Fiorito (70)
American bandleader, pianist, keyboardist; still in his teens in 1919 he worked
as a pianist at Columbia's New York City recording studio, working with the Yerkes
Novelty Five, Yerkes' Jazarimba Orchestra and the Happy Six. He
moved to Chicago in 1921 to join Dan Russo's band, and the following year he was
the co-leader of Russo and Fio Rito's Oriole Orchestra. They did their first radio
remote broadcast on March 29, 1924. In August 1925, theyopened Chicago's new Uptown
Theatre. Over the years vocalists such as Jimmy Baxter, Candy Candido, the Debutantes,
Betty Grable, June Haver, the Mahoney Sisters, Muzzy Marcellino, Joy Lane (1947-1951),
Billy Murray, Maureen OConnor, Patti Palmer. He composed more than 100 songs,
collaborating with such lyricists as Ernie Erdman, Gus Kahn, Sam Lewis, Cecil
Mack, Albert Von Tilzer and Joe Young. Ted played in Las Vegas during the 1960s.
In his last years, he led a small combo at venues throughout California and Nevada
until his death in Scottsdale, Arizona Swingle (sadly died of a heart attack)
December 20th 1900.
1977: Richie Kamuca
(46) American jazz
tenor saxophone player born in Philadelphia, later he moved to the West coast;
Much of his early playing was done on tour with the big bands of Stan Kenton and
Woody Herman, where he became a member of the later line-ups of Herman's famous
Four Brothers saxophone section with Al Cohn and Bill Perkins.On
the West Coast he played with the smaller groups of Chet Baker, Maynard Ferguson,
Shorty Rogers, and others. He was one of the Lighthouse All-Stars in 1957 and
1958, and recorded with Perkins, Art Pepper, Jimmy Rowles, Cy Touff and many others
in those years, as well as leading recording sessions in his own right. Richie
was a member of the group "Shelly Manne and His Men" from 1959 through
1962, when he moved to New York. In New York, he worked with Gerry Mulligan, Gary
McFarland, and Roy Eldridge before returning to the West Coast in 1972, where
he recorded in the studios and performed with local groups
Richie died after battling cancer) b. July 23rd 1930.
"Sonny" Stitt (58) American
jazz saxophonist of the bebop/hard bop idiom, recording over 100 records in his
He featured in Tiny Bradshaw's big band in the early 40s, but his first recordings
were made in 1945 with Stan Getz and Dizzy Gillespie. He
played alto saxophone in Billy Eckstine's big band 1945 until 1949, when he started
to play tenor saxophone more frequently. Later on, he played with other bop musicians
Bud Powell and Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, and experimented with Afro-Cuban
jazz in the late 1950s, the results can be heard on his recordings for Roost and
Verve, on which he teamed up with Thad Jones and Chick Corea for Latin versions
of such standards as "Autumn Leaves". Though the 60's till his death
he regularly toured Europe, playing and recording with the greats and was a frequently
seen playing at Ronnie Scott's in London. He also was one of the first jazz musicians
to experiment with an electric saxophone, an instrument called a Varitone, as
heard on the album Just The Way It Was - Live At The Left Bank, recorded in 1971
and released in 2000 (sadly
died from a heart attack) b.
February 2nd 1924.
Finnish operatic bass, born in Hiitola,
and made his operatic debut in Helsinki in 1960 as Sparafucile. At 6 ft 8 in,
he was the tallest singer of the century. He sang at the Stockholm Royal Opera
in Sweden from 1961 to 1962, before becoming a regularly employed singer at the
Deutsche Oper of Berlin in 1962. In 1970, the Senate of West Berlin formally granted
him the rank of chamber singer. He worked as the artistic leader of the Savonlinna
Opera Festival from 1972 to 1979. At New York's Metropolitan Opera, he performed
the role of Boris Godunov 39 times between 1974 and 1987. He was especially acclaimed
as the title character in Boris Godunov and as Pimen from the same work, as Paavo
Ruotsalainen in The Last Temptations, as a Wagner singer (King Marke, Hunding,
Fasolt, Fafner, Hagen and Titurel, as Sarastro, Dosefei, and Prince Gremin, as
King Phillip II, the Grand Inquisitor and, in the later part of his career, the
title character in Glinka's Ivan Susanin. As his final record he left, terribly
thinned out by illness, a warm and heartfelt version of Schubert's Winterreise.
died while dancing with a lady of a neighbouring farm at his daughter's wedding)
English musician founder member and keyboardist for Charlatans; he grew up in
Willenhall, Staffordshire and
was invited to join the Charlatans in the late 1980s as their first keyboardist.
The band's debut single "Indian Rope" was an indie hit, and led the
way for their debut top ten single "The Only One I Know" in 1990. His
swirling and layered psychedelic organ playing added an important and noted edge
to the bands sound and placed the band apart from many of their contemporaries.
Rob recorded four successful albums with the band. In
1992 he was arrested for robbery on an off-licence near his home, for which he
served 4 months in 1994 (Rob had started to record his keyboard
parts for the
Charlatans' 5th album Tellin'
Stories when tragically he was killed in a car crash on a country road in Wales)
b. February 23rd
Hermann Prey (69) German bass-baritone,
in the early 50s he joined the Staatsoper, where he sang until 1960. During his
last years in Hamburg, he also made frequent guest appearances elsewhere, including
the Salzburg Festival. He
sang frequently at the Metropolitan Opera between 1960 and 1970 and made his Bayreuth
debut in 1965. Although he often sang Verdi early in his career, he later concentrated
more on Mozart and Richard Strauss. Prey was well known for playing Figaro (Mozart
and Rossini), but he played other Mozart roles at least equally often, particularly
Papageno and Guglielmo. He also played, and recorded, the Count in The Marriage
of Figaro. He is regarded by many as the best Einsenstein in Die Fledermaus operetta.
He also sang operetta
and performed on German TV, becoming extremely popular with television audiences.
Starting in 1982, he taught at the Musikhochschule Hamburg, and he wrote an autobiography
which was translated as First Night Fever.
1988, he directed a production of The Marriage of Figaro in Salzburg (?)
b. July 11th 1929.
Gary C. "Gar" Samuelson (41)
heavy metal musician born in
Dunkirk, New York; he is best known as the drummer
for thrash metal band Megadeth, working in it from 1984 to 1987. Prior to Megadeth
he and Chris Poland played in a jazz fusion band called The New Yorkers, and that
before this, both practiced and played together for many years. Also Gary and
his brother Stew, along with Billy Brehme, Travis Karcher and Andy Freeman, formed
the band Fatal Opera, which released a self-titled album in 1995 and the Eleventh
Hour in 1997 (He sadly died from liver failure)
Distel/Sacha Alexandre (71) French
singer and guitarist best known for a string of hits in the 1960s and 1970s, started
out in music as a professional jazz guitarist at the age of 16. He
went on to become a household name across the world during a career which peaked
with his cover version of Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head. He scored his first
hit with Scoubidou in 1958 and went on to record more than 200 songs. He worked
alongside some of the music greats including Dizzy Gillespie, Tony Bennett and
Quincy Jones. Considered a heart-throb around the world, he also appeared in a
number of French films and television programmes and had his own TV show in the
US, where he was also hugely popular. Sacha made his British theatre debut as
smooth talking lawyer Billy Flynn in the London West End production of the Bob
Fosse musical Chicago for three months from December 2000
(long battle with deteriorating health)
b. January 29th 1933.
2004: Arthur Crier (69) American
singer, songwriter and producer born in Manhattan; in 1953, he formed the Chimes
with Gary Morrison, Gene Redd and John Murray. They recorded two singles, including
'Dearest Darling'. He and Morrison then joined original Hummer members Lillian
Leach, John Wilson and Harold Johnson in the Mellows, recording hits such as the
haunting ballad 'Moon Of Silver'. He also formed the Halos and recorded the Coasters-styled
novelty 'Nag', which became a national hit in the summer of 1961. Crier's prominent
bass voice, singing "oh, baby you're a nag" became the song's hook.
As accomplished background singers, Crier and the members of the Halos were among
the most recorded vocal groups of the early 1960s, backing artists including Tommy
Hunt, Bobby Vinton, Johnny Nash, Little Eva, Johnny Mathis, Dion,
Gene Pitney, Curtis Lee, Barry Mann, the Coasters,
Connie Francis, Brian Hyland and Ben E. King, among others. His resonant bass
voice was featured on Barry Mann's 'Who Put The Bomp' and the Phil Spector-produced
'Pretty Little Angel Eyes' by Curtis Lee and Gene Pitney's 'Every Breath I Take'
(sadly Arthur died of heart failure) b. April
Illinois Jacquet (82)
American jazz tenor saxophonist
best remembered for his solo on "Flying Home", critically recognized
as the first R&B saxophone solo. He was a pioneer of the honking tenor saxophone
that became a regular feature of jazz playing and a hallmark of early rock and
roll. He was one of few who doubled on the bassoon. Born in Broussard, Louisiana
and moved to Houston, Texas as an infant, Illinios performed in his father's band
as a child on the alto sax. At 15, he began playing with the Milton Larkin Orchestra,
and in 1939, moved to LA, where he met and sat in with Nat King Cole. He changed
to tenor sax when he joined Lionel Hampton in 1940. Illinois
appeared as a member
with Cab Calloway's band in Lena Horne's movie Stormy Weather, before he formed
a small band with his brother Russell and a young Charles Mingus. It was at this
time that he appeared in the Academy Award-nominated short film Jammin' the Blues
with Lester Young. He also appeared at the first Jazz at the Philharmonic concert.
In 1946 he moved to New York City and joined the Count Basie orchestra, replacing
Lester Young. Aer which he continued to perform, mostly in Europe, in small groups
through the 1960s and 1970s and he led the Illinois Jacquet Big Band from 1981
until his death. He became the first jazz musician to be an artist-in-residence
at Harvard University in 1983. He also played "C-Jam Blues" with President
Bill Clinton on the White House lawn during Clinton's inaugural ball in 1993 (heart
attack) b. October 31st 1922.
2005: Eugene Record (64) American
lead singer with The Chi-lites, The
Chi-Lites began with the merging of two 1950s doo wop groups, Robert
"Squirrel" Lester, Eugene Record and Clarence Johnson from "The
Chanteurs", with Creadel "Red" Jones and Marshall Thompson from
"the Desideros". Originally known as the "Hi-Lites", they
became the Chi-Lites in 1964. The Chi-Lites went on to have hits such as "Are
You My Woman? (Tell Me So)",
"(For God's Sake) Give More Power to the People", "Have You Seen
Her" and "Oh Girl". Between 1972 and 1976 the band had a number
of UK Top 10 pop hit records, including "Have You Seen Her" >>>
MORE <<< (sadly died
while fighting cancer) b.
December 23rd 1940.
Jessie Mae Hemphill (82) American
award winning blues musician born near Como and Senatobia, Mississippi; a pioneering
electric guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist specializing in the primal, northern
Mississippi country blues. The first field recordings of her work were made by
blues researcher George Mitchell in 1967 and ethnomusicologist Dr. David Evans
in 1973 when she was known as Jessie Mae Brooks, using the surname from a brief
early marriage, but the recordings were not released. She launched her recording
career in the early 1980s, her first full-length album, She-Wolf, was
released in 1981. Jessie performed concerts
across the US and other countries including France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Belgium,
The Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, and Canada. She received the W. C. Handy
Award for best traditional female blues artist in 1987 and 1988 (sadly died from
complications of an ulcer) b.
October 18 1923.
Dika Newlin (82)
and punk rocker; she could read the dictionary by age 3, play the piano by age
6 and began composing music at age 7. When she was 11 she wrote a symphonic piece,
Cradle Song, that was performed 3 years later by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra.
Her compositions include 3 operas, a piano concerto, a chamber symphony, numerous
chamber, vocal and mixed-media works. She also translated many of Schoenberg's
works from German to English, she sang in a costumed performance of Pierrot Lunaire,
which she had translated to English in 1999. The 70's saw her as a leather-clad
punk rocker with bright orange hair. As a punk rocker, she appeared in horror
movies by Richmond producer Michael D. Moore. Around this time she also performed
as an Elvis Presley impersonator. In 1985 she formed a new band ApoCowLypso, with
fellow singer/songwriters Brooke Saunders and Manko Eponymous and Hunter Duke
on drums; she performed lead and backing vocals as well as percussion..washboard,
tambourine and temple bells. In the 1995 film Creep, she played a person wearing
a leather motorcycle jacket who puts poison in baby food at a supermarket and
she posed for a pinup calendar when she was in her 70s (This
amazing lady sadly died from complications of a broken arm she suffered in an
accident on June 30th 2006) b.
November 22nd 1923.
Don Arden/Harry Levy (81)
British rock manager, agent and businessman, best known for overseeing the careers
of rock groups Small Faces, Electric Light Orchestra and Black Sabbath. He
achieved notoriety in England for his aggressive, sometimes illegal business tactics
which led to him being called "Mr Big", "The English Godfather"
and "The Al Capone of Pop", also the father of Sharon Osbourne (Alzheimer's
Futoshi (42) Japanese
guitarist and founder member the influential Japanese punk band Thee Michelle
Gun Elephant, a band he co-formed while he was student at Tokyo's Meiji Gakuin
University.They recorded 11 albums between 1993, debuting with Maximum! Maximum!!
Maximum!!! and 2003 with the two albums Sabrina No Heaven and the live album,
Last Heaven's Bootleg
(epidural hematoma) b.????
2010: Harry Beckett (75) Barbadian-born British
trumpeter and flugelhorn player,
who in 1972, won the Melody Maker jazz Poll as 'Top Trumpeter in Britain'.
Harry was a key figure of important groups in the British free jazz/improvised
music scene, including Ian Carr's Nucleus, the Brotherhood of Breath and The Dedication
Orchestra, London Jazz Composers Orchestra, London Improvisers Orchestra, John
Surman's Octet, Django Bates, Ronnie Scott's Quintet, Kathy Stobart, Charlie Watts,
Stan Tracey's Big Band and Octet; Elton Dean's Ninesense. He has also recorded
with Keef Hartley, Jah Wobble, David Sylvian and worked with David Murray. He
toured abroad with Johnny Dyani, Chris McGregor, Keith Tippett, John Tchicai,
Joachim Kühn, Dudu Pukwana's Zila, George Gruntz's Bands, Belgian quintet
The Wrong Object, Pierre Dørge's New Jungle Band and Annie Whitehead's
Robert Wyatt project, Soupsongs, amongst other jazz and rock projects. He was
also a member of the Orchestre National de Jazz between 1997 and 2000 (sadly
died after suffering a stroke) b. May 30th
Phillip Walker (73) American blues guitarist, who grew up on the Texas
Gulf Coast, by his mid-teens was playing guitar in Houston, working for Lonesome
Sundown and Lonnie Brooks. In the mid 1950s he had a spell in Clifton Chenier's
band and also recorded his most noted hit single, "Hello My Darling"
in 1959. He spent the 1960s in LA, California leading a band that played a catholic
repertoire of the R&B chart music, joined by his singing wife Ina, alias Bea
Bopp. He appeared on show 237 of the WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour in 2002 and
in 2007 he recorded his
final studio album, Going Back Home (heart
failure) b. February 11th 1937.
Mike Shipley (56) Australian-born sound engineer,
mixer and music producer. Born in Sydney, he became interested in a recording
career while at school in the UK in the early 1970s. He completed school in Melbourne,
Australia, but quickly returned to London, where he got his first big break working
for Wessex Studios, home to acts including Queen and The Sex Pistols. Asked to
work with The Cars, he went to LA in 1984, he relocated breifly to Hawaii, but
returned to LA where
he has since been based.
Over his career Mike has produced and mixed albums for such diverse artists as
Queen, Keith Urban, AC/DC, Lynam, Mr.
Mister, Joni Mitchell,
The Cars, Meat Loaf, Def Leppard, A Flock of Seagulls, The
Clash, Winger, Van
Halen, The Corrs, Anberlin, Shania
Carnes, Kelly Clarkson, Aerosmith, Tom Petty, Blondie,
Foreigner, Devo, Cheap
Barnes, Enrique Iglesias, Tim McGraw, Maroon
5, Ashley Tesoro,
Barenaked Ladies, Ric
Faith Hill, Nickelback, Michael Bolton, Ronan Keating, Thomas Dolby, Prefab Sprout,
Airplane, Green Day, Blessed by a Broken Heart, The Black Crowes, Alison Krauss,
Casey Chambers, Shawn Colvin, Takota, My
Chemical Romance, John
Waite, and Days of the New. He also worked on the Rock of Ages soundtrack featuring
Tom Cruise, Alec Baldwin and Russell Brand and
was awarded 2 Grammy Awards for his work on the Alison Krauss and Union Station
release Paper Airplane (sadly died at Studio City, CA)
b. October 7th 1956.
2013: GiGi Hines (76) American blues singer
and songwriter a self-taught singer and guitarist, was at home before audiences
of all sizes and musical tastes, including performances for children in hospitals,
church congregations and in nightclubs. She also was a member of The Patio Jammers,
an informal group of 10 to 12 singers who gather at bars with patios for jam sessions
() b. May 7th 1937
Owen Mays (32) American hillbilly and honky tonk country singer-songwriter,
guitarist, banjo, fiddle player born in Cambria, Wisconsin and played the trumpet
in the elementary band and sang in the high school choir.. After working in several
deat-end jobs he got a break in 2009, while working a summer job at a campground
in his home town when he played a show with his friends, J.B. Beverley & The
Wayward Drifters. The next day, he joined the Drifters for a few days on the road,
taking in all of the knowledge about music, and business. In March 2011, Owen
set out on his first solo U.S. tour, which was quickly followed by a second tour
that summer. Since then, he has played countless shows around the United States,
both solo, and backed by several incarnations of his backing band, The 80 Proof
Boys. Owen was currently doing shows with Amanda & Eric Bestul, as Owen Mays
and the Last Calls. (?) b.
November 1st 1982.
Edgar Muenzer (88) American violinist; a longtime Park Ridge resident,
he founded the award winning Park Ridge Civic Orchestra along with his wife Nancy
in September 1994. The orchestras contribution to Park Ridge and surrounding
communities has been acknowledged with numerous awards, including the Governors
Hometown Award; 10 awards from the Illinois Council of Orchestras, including Orchestra
of the Year; Pickwick Arts Award; and several Mayoral Proclamations from
the City of Park Ridge. Edgar and Nancy Muenzer also received the Illinois Humanities
Council Studs Terkel Humanities Service Award. His long musical career also includes
47 years as a renowned violinist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, from 1954
until 2003, as well as performing with the Chicago Symphony String Quartet, teaching
violin at Northwestern University and serving as concertmaster for the Northbrook
died following a long illness)
Giuseppe Domenico Scarlatti
(71) Italian composer; born in Naples, Kingdom
of Naples, he became a composer and organist at the royal chapel in Naples in
1701 and he spent much of his life in the service of the Portuguese and Spanish
royal families. He is classified as a Baroque composer chronologically, although
his music was influential in the development of the Classical style. His influential
555 sonatas were almost all written for the harpsichord with a few exceptions
for chamber ensemble or organ (died
in Madrid, were his house on Calle Leganitos is designated with a historical plaque)
1980: Keith Godchaux (32) American keyboard
player, born in Seattle, Washington, but grew up in Concord, California and was
married to singer Donna Jean Thatcher. He started playing with The Grateful Dead
in 1971 after he had been working with Dave Mason, formerly of Traffic. Keith
stayed with the Dead until 1979. He and Donna also issued the mostly self-written
Keith and Donna album in 1975 with Jerry Garcia as a member of their band. The
album was recorded at their home in Stinson Beach, where they lived in the 70s.
They also appeared in Jerry's band
New Riders of the Purple Sage. Keith also appeared with the Subsequently, co-writing
songs with Lowell George and Robert Hunter.After his time with Jerry, he and his
wife formed The Heart of Gold Band, sadly this was short lived
(tragically died in a car accident in Marin
County, California) b.
July 19th 1948
Georges Auric (84)
born in Lodève, Hérault. He was a child prodigy and at age 15 he
had his first compositions published. He studied at the Paris Conservatoire and
before he turned 20 he had orchestrated and written incidental music for several
ballets and stage productions. He continued to write classical chamber music throughout
his life, but Georges also went on to write soundtracks for a number of French
and British films, and his success led to writing the music for Hollywood movies,
too. Several times, his work made it to the hit parade, notably The Song from
Moulin Rouge. Especially
notable among his film music is the lavishly impressionistic score that he wrote
for Jean Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast-1946; other films include Passport to
Pimlico-1948, Silent Dust-1949, The Lavender Hill Mob-1951, Moulin Rouge-1952,
The Titfield Thunderbolt-1953, Roman Holiday-1953, The Wages of Fear-1953, The
Divided Heart-1954, Lola Montes-1955, Rififi-1956, The Hunchback of Notre Dame-1956,
Bonjour Tristesse-1958, The Night Heaven Fell-1958, Goodbye Again-1961, and Therese
and Isabelle-1968. In 1960 he was a member of the jury at the 10th Berlin International
February 15th 1899.
2002: Idrees Sulieman (79)
American flugelhorn player,
trumpeter; born in St. Petersburg, Florida,
he studied at Boston Conservatory, after which from
1943 to 1946 he played with the Carolina Cotton Pickers, the Earl Hines Orchestra
and Mary Lou Williams. In 1947 he recorded with Thelonious Monk which made him
the first trumpeter that played be-bop with the now legendary pianist. Over the
next 14 years he played with many greats such as Cab Calloway, John Coltrane,
Count Basie, Lionel Hampton, Randy Weston and Coleman
went on tour in Europe in 1961 with Oscar Dennard, and settled in Stockholm, then
moved to Copenhagen in 1964. Idrees became a major soloist with The Kenny Clarke-Francy
Boland Big Band from the mid '60s through 1973 and frequently worked with radio
orchestras (sadly died battling bladder cancer)
b. August 7th 1923.
Piero Piccioni (82) Italian pianist, organist,
conductor, composer, born in Turin;
many directors sought Piero to score the soundtracks for their films: Francesco
Rosi, Mario Monicelli, Alberto Lattuada, Luigi Comencini, Luchino Visconti, Antonio
Pietrangeli, Bernardo Bertolucci, Roberto Rossellini, Vittorio De Sica, Tinto
Brass, Dino Risi, and others. He is credited with works for more than 300 soundtracks
and compositions for films, radio, television, ballets and orchestra. Among his
favorite vocalists were female soul singer Shawn Robinson and Lydia MacDonald.
Piero's many prestigious prizes won include a David di Donatello Award for the
movie Swept Away in 1975, Nastro dargento Award for the movie Salvatore
Giuliano by Francesco Rosi 1963, Prix International Lumière 1991, Anna
Magnani Award 1975 and Vittorio De Sica Award 1979 (died
in Rome) b. December
Serge Reggiani (82)
Italian-French singer and actor, born in Reggio Emilia, Italy, he moved to France
at aged eight. His first feature film came in 1946 with his role in Les portes
de la nuit / "The Doors of the Night". He later went on to perform in
80 films including Casque d'or, Les Misérables ,Tutti a casa, Le Doulos,
Il Gattopardo, La terrazza, and The Pianist in 1998. His best known songs include
"Les loups sont entrés dans Paris"/"The Wolves Have Entered
Paris" and "Sarah (La femme qui est dans mon lit.)"/"The Woman
Who Is In My Bed". In later life he became a painter and gave a number of
exhibitions of his artwork (heart
attack) b. May 2nd 1922.
2004: Carlos Paredes (79)
guitar player, known
as the "Man with a Thousand Fingers". Born
in Coimbra, he is credited with popularising the medium internationally during
the 20th century, being frequently considered to be the most talented Portuguese
musician in the 20th century. Carlos began playing guitar at the age of four and
started his music career at the age of eleven. He performed with many other artists
including Charlie Haden and also wrote compositions for Fado singer Amália
Rodrigues. He did a stiny in prison for opposing the Portuguese dictatorship,
he would walk around his cell pretending to play music which led some prison inmates
to believe he was insane, he was actually
doing compositions in his head. He
wrote a number of film scores and received particular recognition for the 1961
film Verdes Anos/"Tender Years". In 2000, the string quartet Kronos
Quartet recorded two versions of Verdes Anos and Romance Nº.1, from the first
Perry Froelic album, Guitarra Portuguesa, recorded in 1969 -1970 (?)
February 16th 1925.
Theodore "Ted" Greene (58) American
fingerstyle jazz guitarist, teacher
and music columnist; in
the 1960s he was a member of a blues
rock group called Bluesberry Jam along with future Canned Heat drummer Fito de
la Parra. They shared billings with The Doors, Iron Butterfly, Sweetwater, Alice
Cooper, Sons of Champlin, Poco, Blues Image and Joe Cocker. He was well known
to guitarists due to his role as a music educator, which included private teaching,
seminars at the Guitar Institute of Technology, columns for Guitar Player magazine,
and his series of instructional books on guitar harmony, chord melody and single-note
soloing. Later he would make occasional live appearances at clubs in the San Fernando
Valley, usually playing a Fender Telecaster. Ted recorded one album "Solo
Guitar" in 1977, and he also helped Fender design a 1952 Telecaster vintage
reissue, their first such reissue, by making reference to his collection of old
Telecasters, Broadcasters and Nocasters.
(sadly Ted died of a heart attack)
September 26th 1946.
Floren (85) US
accordianist; he best known as the accordionist on The Lawrence Welk Show between
1950 and 1982. In the mid-1970s, he formed an orchestra of his own, while still
employed by the Welk organization.
Based in Fargo, North Dakota, the "Myron Floren Orchestra" played during
the television show's off-season, and during holiday breaks, becoming a regional
the Welk show went off the air in the early 1980s, Myron continued to perform
on the road, with as many as 200 dates a year, either as a solo artist, with his
orchestra, or with other members of the Welk Show cast. Among the annual events
where he headlined were Wurstfest in New Braunfels, Texas; German Fest in Milwaukee,
Wisconsin; Norsk Høstfest in Minot, North Dakota; the Strawberry Festival
in Plant City, Florida and PolkaFest at the Welk Resort in Branson, Missouri.
was a member of the International Polka Music Hall of Fame, having been inducted
in 1990. (Died after several battles with cancer) November
2007: Ron Miller (73) American songwriter
and record producer who attained many Top 10 hits with ballads written for Motown
artists in the 1960s and 1970s.
in Chicago and was discovered playing in a bar by Motown founder Berry Gordy.
He penned a number of songs for Stevie Wonder, including four hit singles, the
most famous hit song was Stevie Wonder's "For Once in My Life" which
was written the night his daughter Angel was born. It is one of the most covered
songs in pop history with more than 270 recorded versions. A version recorded
by Tony Bennett and Wonder won a Grammy Award in 2007. A version of his song "Heaven
Help Us All" by Ray Charles and Gladys Knight won a Grammy Award for best
gospel performance in 2005
(Ron sadly died of cardiac arrest after a long brave battle
with emphysema and cancer)
Danny McBride/Daniel Hatton (63) American
singer-songwriter, guitarist; raised in Reading, Massachusetts, where he graduated
at Reading Memorial High School, then graduated from Boston University in 1970.
is best known as the lead guitarist and lead singer for Sha Na Na during their
heyday on their TV series of the same name. He also appeared in the film Grease
in 1978 with Sha Na Na. He also, enjoyed success as a solo artist, an actor and
voice-over performer (died
in his sleep) b. November 20th
Andak (89) Turkish composer, Selmi graduated
from various international music schools and he also worked as a music journalist.
This year, he wanted to celebrate 70th anniversary as a music artist. He is also
known for having competed with ten songs in Turkish national finals for the Eurovision
Song Contest between 1975 and 1995. including "Hayalimdeki adam" in
1975, which scored equal 2nd, and "Gramafon" in 1982 which came 3rd.
(Sadly died at a hospital in Istanbul)
Dutch jazz bandleader, composer,
arranger, saxophonist, and bass clarinetist. During
the mid 1960s he played with percussionist Han Bennink and pianist Misha Mengelberg,
co-founding the Instant Composers Pool until 1973. He was also a member of the
Globe Unity Orchestra and the Gunter Hampel Group. In 1974 he began leading the
10-piece Willem Breuker Kollektief, which performed jazz in a theatrical and often
unconventional manner, drawing elements from theater and vaudeville. They toured
Western Europe, Russia, Australia, India, China, Japan, the United States, and
Canada. In 1998, Willem was knighted with the Order of the Netherlands Lion (sadly
lost his battle with lung cancer)
b. November 4th
Bill Morrissey (59) American folk singer-songwriter
born in Hartford, Connecticut. Many of his songs reflect the harsh realities of
life in crumbling New England mill towns and over the years two of his ten albums
received Grammy nominations and several have earned 4-star reviews in Rolling
Stone. His most recent album Come Running, produced by himself and Billy Conway
of Morphine, was released in 2007 by his own label, Turn and Spin Media. Come
Running features guitar work by Dave Alvin and the remaining members of Morphine,
Billy Conway and Dana Colley (sadly
died of heart disease) b.
November 25th 1951.
Johnny Hoes (94) Dutch
composer and producer, known as the king of
the tear-jerker and was the man behind thousands of sing-alongs, tearjerkers ,
carnival squatters and torch . His big hits include "The smuggler",
"That's the end" and "We want fries with mayonnaise". His
hit "Oh, I was but the mother stayed at home", stands with 450,000 copies
is the best selling single ever in Dutch. In
the 60s and 70s he had his own television show called With a Smile and a Tear
. He remained active until a very advanced age, in January 2011 he recorded his
last album on the song "How do you do" in a duet with Stef Ekkel
(sadly Johnny died from heart problems after a severe heart
attack earlier this month) b. April 19th 1917.
Amy Winehouse (27) English singer, songwriter and guitar player;
born in Southgate, London, at nine years old, Amy attended the Susi Earnshaw Theatre
School and at ten, she founded a short-lived rap group called Sweet 'n' Sour.
She stayed at the Earnshaw school for four years before seeking full time training
at Sylvia Young Theatre School, she appeared in an episode of The Fast Show in
1997 before allegedly being expelled at 14 for "not applying herself"
and for piercing her nose. Amy had taken up the guitar at 13 and was writing songs
by the age of 14. She began working soon after, including as a showbiz journalist
for the World Entertainment News Network, in addition to singing with local group
the Bolsha Band. >>>
MORE <<< (cause
of death not been made public) b.
September 14th 1983.
Pino Massara/Giuseppe Previde Massara (82) Italian
musician, composer and
record producer, born in Vigevano. Among his successful songs "Permette,
signorina?" was covered by the great Nat King Cole with the title "Cappuccina",
"I Sing ammore" and "Grazie prego scusi", both recorded by
several artists including Dean Martin, "Nel Sole" sold over one million
copies and launched the career of Al Bano and "Siamo la coppia più
bella del mondo", a duet between Adriano Celentano and Claudia Mori which
was No.1 in the Italian charts for six weeks. In the 70s he also founded "Bla
Bla Records", a recording company that produced the first works of Juri Camisasca,
Franco Battiato and the avant-garde rock of Capsicum Red (?)
b. April 24th 1931
Dominguinhos/José Domingos de Morais (72)
composer, born in Garanhuns, Pernambuco; he
performed with musicians such as Luiz Gonzaga, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Gal
Costa, Zé Ramalho, Toquinho, and Maria Bethânia. Some of his hits
were recorded by Bethânia, Chico Buarque,
Elba Ramalho and Fagner and in 1997 he wrote the soundtrack of
the film O Cangaceiro (sadly
died of an infection and cardiac complications) b. February 12th 1941
2014: Mohan Nadkarni
mostly based in Pune and Mumbai, where he was the music critic of The Times of
India for over 5 decades and reviewed thousands of music concerts and singers
between 1948-2000. Over the years, he authored over 4,000 articles and critiques
on Hindustani music, Marathi and Sanskrit drama and theatre, and other cultural
topics for Indian and foreign publications. In
2006, he moved to Auckland,
New Zealand to live with his son Dev. At this
time, he donated his entire music collection comprising thousands of articles,
rare photographers, around 1,200 LPs and other records, thousands of music-cassettes,
to the Department of Music at Punes SNDT University, which has set up a
music library named after him (sadly
died fighting a chest infection chest in New Zealand) b. 1923.
Saado Ali Warsame (64) Somali-American singer-songwriter
and politician. She served as a lawmaker in the Federal Parliament of Somalia.
A prominent figure in traditional Somali music, her art and legislative work were
centered on political and social justice, like her song "Laand Karuusar"
criticized kleptocracy in the ruling military junta. (tragically
Saado and her driver were gunned down by unknown assailants in Mogadishu as she
was being driven to a hotel. Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack,
which it said was part of its assassination campaign against Somali legislators)
Norman Leyden (96) American conductor, composer,
arranger and clarinetist, born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He began his professional
music career playing bass clarinet for the New Haven Symphony Orchestra while
attending Yale. He worked in film and television,
and co-wrote with Glenn Miller the theme "I Sustain the Wings" in 1943,
which was used to introduce the World War II radio series. As
a staff arranger at RCA Victor he composed and arranged music for Disney and other
musicals including Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,
Winnie the Pooh, Peter Pan, and Pinocchio. He conducted and arranged for many
well-known artists including Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Don Cornell, Vic
Damone, Johnny Desmond, Johnny Hartman, Gordon MacRae, Mitch Miller,
Ezio Pinza, Frank Sinatra, Jeri Southern, and Sarah Vaughan, but he is perhaps
best known as the conductor of the Oregon Symphony Pops orchestra. In 1991 he
was honoured with the Oregon Governor's Arts Award
(?) b. October 17th 1917.
Hans Albers (68)
German actor and singer born in in Hamburg;
as well as being the single biggest male movie star in Germany between 1930 and
1945 and one of the most popular German actors of the twentieth century, he was
also a singer. Many of Hans' songs were humorous tales of
drunken, womanizing sailors on shore-leave, with double entendres such as "It
hurts the first time, but with time, you get used to it" in reference to
a girl falling in love for the first time. Albers' songs were often peppered with
expressions in Low German, which is spoken in Northern Germany. His most famous
song is by far "Auf der Reeperbahn nachts um halb eins"/"On the
Reeperbahn at half past midnight"
b. September 22nd 1891.
1972: Bobby Ramirez (23) Mexican-born
drummer who worked with Rick Derringer, LaCroix and Edgar Winters White
Trash. He appeared on two of the band's album, their self titled debut album in
1971 and Roadwork in 1972 (while on tour with
Edgar Winter, supporting Uriah Heap,
Bobby found himself assaulted after an altercation
in a Chicago bar. He was tragically
beaten and kicked to death after comments
were made about the length of his hair) b.
1980: Peter Sellers/Richard
Henry Sellers (54) English comic actor,
musician, singer and a Goon; as well as his huge
comedy, film and
radio career, he was a versatile artist,
excelling at dancing and drumming well enough to tour with jazz bands and played
ukulele and banjo. In a Parkinson Show, Peter claimed his father had taught George
Formby to play ukulele. Peter himself played ukulele on the "New York Girls"
track for Steeleye Span's 1975 album 'Commoner's Crown'. He also had some hit
records in the UK charts, including "Any
Old Iron" in 1957, "Goodness Gracious Me" in 1960 with Sophia Loren,
"Bangers and Mash", also featuring Sophia Loren, then in 1965 "A
Hard Day's Night". This consisted
of him speaking the Beatles lyrics using the stereotypical voice of an actor playing
Shakespeare's Richard III. He also performed the song in costume on television.
the late 1950s, Peter released two comedy records produced by George Martin: "The
Best of Sellers", with the tracks "Balham, Gateway to the South"
and "Suddenly It's Folksong" where a group of people end up smashing
up a pub after a row over someone playing a bum note and "Songs for Swinging
Sellers" released in 1959, contained material written by Frank Muir and Dennis
Norden and featured Sellers performing "Puttin on the Style", a parody
of the skiffle movement's performer Lonnie Donegan. He also appeared with guest
Irene Handl on the track "Shadows on the Grass" where he plays the part
of an Indian man befriending a lady in the park. In 1979 he released a third gatefold
album entitled Sellers' Market which included comic singing and a feature called
the "All England George Formby Finals" where he parodies the late George
Formby and his ukelele playing. Also featured was the Complete Guide to Accents
of the British Isles. The tracks on all three albums showcased Peter's ability
to use his flexible voice to enormous comedic effect (sadly
died of a heart attack)
b. September 8th 1925
Richard MacQueen "Dick" Wellstood (59)
and one of the few stride pianists to arise in the 1940s during the rise of bebop.
Born in Greenwich, Connecticut, he played with Bob Wilber's Wildcats in 1946 before
becoming a mainstay on the trad jazz scene, playing with Sidney Bechet in 1947
and in the 1950s with Jimmy Archey, Conrad Janis, Roy Eldridge, Rex Stewart, Charlie
Shavers, and Eddie Condon. He was the house pianist at New York City clubs Metropole
and Nick's in the late 1950s and 1960s. He played with Gene Krupa in South America
in 1965 and later joined the World's Greatest Jazz Band. He played locally in
the 1970s and studied law, briefly going into practice in the 1980s. In
1977 Dick completed a tour of the UK with the Dutch Swing College Band and in
the 1980s he often played with Kenny Davernas well as being the house pianist
at Hanratty's restaurant in Manhattan for 68 months a year. At the time
of his death he was the pianist for Bemelman's Bar of the Carlyle Hotel in New
York City (sadly Dick died from a heart
attack) b. November 25th 1927.
1995: Jerry Lordan (61)
English songwriter, composer and singer born in Paddington, London. On leaving
the Air Force he had jobs including stand-up comedian, singer, in advertising
and started to write songs. In 1958 his song, "A House, A Car and a Wedding
Ring" was recorded by Mike Preston, and was also successfully covered by
the American rockabilly star, Dale Hawkins. His song, "I've Waited So Long"
was recorded by the young Anthony Newley reaching No.3 in the UK charts in May
1959. Jerry was signed as a singer to Parlophone and had three charting singles
in 1960, the most successful being "Who Could Be Bluer?". He wrote the
Shadows' UK No.1 "Wonderful Land", and theirr No.2 hit "Atlantis",
as well as a vocal hit single in 1965 " Mary Anne", and a further No.1
"Diamonds" for the ex-Shadows Jet Harris and Tony Meehan in 1963. Harris
and Meehan also recorded his song "Scarlett O'Hara" taking it to No.2.
He wrote further hits for Cliff Richard, such as "A Girl Like You",
and "I'm Just a Baby" for Louise Cordet (Jerry
sadly died of acute renal failure)
b. April 30th 1934.
2001: Georges Dor (70) Québécois
Canadian author, composer, playwright, singer, poet, theatrical producer and director.
He worked as a DJ and news director for Radio-Canada, and became a director for
the Evening News. He wrote poems for many years, but began singing professionally
in early '65, and released his first album in 1966, his track "La Manic",
whose lyrics were a love letter written by a construction worker on the Manicouagan
power project, became the most successful record ever by a Quebec chansonnier.
Georges continued to perform as a singer until 1972, and to record until 1978
b. March 10th 1931
Bobby Thompson (50) Long standing tour
manager for Ozzy Osbourne, he had been with Ozzy for 23 years (sadly
Bobby had been suffering from throat cancer, he passed away in his sleep in a
Hotel in Birmingham, Michigan while there with Ozzfest)
Bob Azzam (78) Egyptian singer born in
became a great success in France in the 1960s with
his hit songs "Mustapha" and "Fais-moi du couscous, chérie".
He had a degree in electronic engineering, and has been regarded as the man behind
the chamber of echoes "Hors-studio" or "off-studio".
He eventually opened a nightclub in Geneva. (?)
October 24th 1925.
Nicola Zaccaria/Giulio Mauri/Nicholas Angelos Zachariou (84) Greek
bass opera singer, born in Piraeus,
Zaccaria studied at the Athens Conservatory where he enjoyed his debut in 1949,
aged 26. He sang at La Scala in 1953 and his position as a mainstay of the bass
operatic repertoire was assured thereafter. He was La Scala's principal bass for
almost 15 years. He sang with some of the most famous singers of his generation,
such as Maria Callas, Leontyne Price, Franco Corelli, and Marilyn Horne, who was
Nicholas's companion in later life. Despite intimidating competition, he developed
an impressive international career and recorded more than 30 operas for major
recording companies. He recorded nine complete operas
with Maria Callas (sadly
Nicholas died from Alzheimer's disease) b. March
Zezé Gonzaga (81) Brazilian singer;
considered one of the most beautiful voices of Rádio Nacional in its heyday,
she was known especially for her two hits "Canção de Dalila"
and "Óculos Escuros" and participated regularly on the radio's
prime time, accompanied by the orchestras conducted by Radamés Gnattali,
Leo Peracchi, Lírio Panicali, and others. In
the late '80s, she formed, with other old-timers, the group Eternas Cantoras do
Rádio, recording two CDs and doing several performances. In 1999, she recorded,
together with Jane Duboc, the album Clássicas, doing shows in Rio, São
Paulo, and other cities. In the late '90s, she also participated in the show Lupicínio
Rodrigues with Áurea Martins in Rio and São Paulo. As
a composer, she wrote (with Luís Carlos Saroldi) the opening theme of the
Minerva project, broadcast nationwide by the Rádio MEC. In 2000, Zeze participated
in the MPB: A História de Um Século project, together with Paulo
Sérgio Santos and Maria Tereza Madeira, an ambitious initiative that intended
to review the history of Brazilian popular music in the 20th century (multiple
organ failure) b. Sept 3rd 1926.
2008: Norman Dello Joio/Nicodemo DeGioio (95)
American composer born in New York City; he began
his musical career as organist and choir director at the Star of the Sea Church
on City Island in New York at age 14. He went on to win the 1957 Pulitzer Prize
for Music for his Meditations on Ecclesiastes. Another of his famous works is
Scenes from the Louvre, for concert band. His Variations, Chaconne and Finale
won the New York Critics Circle Award in 1948 (died in his
sleep at his home) b.
January 24th 1913
Peek (60) American
singer-songwriter, to many best known as a member of the rock band America from
1970 to 1977, where contributed lead and backing vocals, guitars, bass, keyboards,
and harmonica to their recordings during his tenure in the band. As a member of
America, he contributed with four Top 100 singles: "Don't Cross The River",
his most successful single "Lonely People", "Woman Tonight",
and "Today's the Day". Although he did not write them, "Ventura
Highway", "Sister Golden Hair", "Tin Man (song)", and
"A Horse with No Name" are also his collaborations. Dan was also a "pioneer
in contemporary Christian music",
years of life on the road had taken a toll on him. Leaving the band 1977 he renewed
his Christian faith and went on to sign with Pat Boone's Lamb & Lion Records
and his debut solo album, All Things Are Possible was released in 1979. His single
"All Things Are Possible" not only hit number 1 on the CCM singles chart,
it also crossed over to the Billboard singles and adult contemporary charts, becoming
one of the earliest CCM's crossover hits, and the album was nominated at the 22nd
Grammy Awards. He semi-retired in the 1990s, occasionally recording music at his
home in the Cayman Islands
(Dan died in
his sleep) b. November 1st 1950.
Hoppen (61) American vocalist, guitarist and
songwriter born on Long Island, New York, he was co-founder of the pop-rock group
Orleans, best known for its hits "Dance with Me", "Still the One",
from the album Waking and Dreaming, and "Love Takes Time". Between 1969
and 1971, Larry's Ithaca, NY- based band, Boffalongo, made two LPs, the second
included the original recording of Dancin in the Moonlight.
In 1972 he and John
Hall formed the rock band Orleans, which found its core audience
touring the clubs and college circuit of the northeastern United States. It was
not until their third album, Let There Be Music, released in March 1975, that
the band scored its first Billboard Hot 100 hit with "Let There Be Music".
In 1977 Larry joined Jerry Marotta in the backing band for Garland Jeffreys. He
and Orleans continued to tour with the likes of Stephen Stills and Chicago. In
the early 80s Larry and his brother Lance formed a side group, Mood Ring. After
a stint in Nashville, Larry and Orleans returned to Woodstock, and slowly re-established
their presence in the Northeast over the next couple of years. Larry
continued to write, tour and record with Orleans until his death; they were scheduled
to perform in a concert sponsored by morning TV's "Fox & Friends"
on Friday July 27th. Larry performed and/or
recorded with Jackson Browne, Livingston Taylor, Lulu, Graham Parker, Blues Traveler,
Ricky Skaggs, Steve Wariner, Michael Franks, Levon Helm, Michael Brecker, Chet
Atkins, Artie Traum, John Sebastian, Bela Fleck, Felix Cavaliere, Edgar Winter,
Robbie Dupree, Bonny Rhaitt, Spencer Davis, Rick Derringer, Mark Farner, John
Ford Coley, Jimi Jamison, John Cafferty and many more notable artists. Larry also
released 2 solo albums: HandMade and Looking for the Light,
a flagship fundraiser for his nonprofit Sunshine for HIV Kids
(the cause of Larry's death has not yet been disclosed)
b. January 12th 1951.
2013: Chiwoniso Maraire (37)
Zimbabwean Mbira singer and the daughter of Zimbabwean
mbira player and teacher Dumisani Maraire. She fronted her acoustic group Chiwoniso
& Vibe Culture for several years. From 2001 to 2004, she was also a core member
of the multinational all-women band Women's Voice, whose members come from Norway,
Zimbabwe, Tanzania, America, Israel and Algeria. Chiwoniso also starred in film
and worked on the soundtracks for movies and documentaries by an array of Zimbabwean
writers and film producers in the last ten years (sadly Chiwoniso died of a lung
infection, suspected pneumonia) b. March 5th 1976.
Ik-Hwan Bae (57) South Korean-born American concert
violinist; a native of Seoul, he made his professional debut with the Seoul Philharmonic
Orchestra at the age of 12 and he attended New York City's prestigious Fiorello
H. LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts, graduating in 1976. While there,
he also studied with Ivan Galamian at Juilliard's Pre-School and graduated four
years later. He received second prize at the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition
in Brussels in 1985 and also was a prize winner at the ARD International Music
Competition in Munich in 1984. In 1986, he was a recipient of the Solo Recitalist
Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. His performances in recitals and
concerto concerts took him to most of the major cities in Europe, Asia and the
United States. (?) b.
November 19th 1956.
2014: Yoo Chae-yeong/Kim
Soo-jin (40) South Korean singer; she made her
debut at 17 years old as part of the group Punsudeul/Idiots in 1989, when she
was still in high school. In 1994, using the stage name Yoo Chae-yeong, she became
one of the original members of the popular K-pop group Cool, before embarking
on a solo career r in 1996, and released her hit song "Emotion" in 1999.
As an actress, Yoo appeared in movies and TV dramas, notably in the comedy film
Sex Is Zero and its sequel Sex Is Zero 2. She was also a radio host on the MBC
program Good Weekend, It's Kim Kyung-sik and Yoo Chae-yeong, where she was known
for her quick wit and self-deprecating humor (sadly
Yoo died while fighting stomach cancer)
b. September 22nd 1973.
Sushilarani Patel (96) Indian classical singer,
writer, activist and judiciary, she
was a film industry pioneer and renaissance woman. She started training in classical
music at the age of 7 and studied with such greats as Pandita Mogubai Kurdikar
and Ustad Alladiya Khan Saheb. Over her long career, won 34 awards, including
a Dadasaheb Phalke Academy award, a Sangeet Natak Akademi award and a Maharashtra
Rajya Sanskritik Puraskar. She also trained many singers
who went on to find fame, including Alvira Khan, Kiran Rao, and sitar maestro
Ustad Alim Khan and so many others (sadly
died of a heart attack) b. 1918.
2014: Jaan Arder (62) Estonian singer born
in Tallinn. He was a founding member of the rock band Apelsin, before joining
the music ensemble Hortus Musicus as their baritone singer (?)
Christian Falk (52) Swedish
singer and bassist started his recording career with the band Madhouse in the
early 80s, before co-founding the post-punk band Imperiet.
the early 90s he emerged as a producer and DJ in the emerging Swedish hip
hop, soul and club scene and produced
the multi-million selling song "7 Seconds" released
in 1994 as a single performed by Youssou N'Dour and Neneh Cherry. He
co-wrote the track "Electricity" and several other tracks on the 1995
album We Care from alt-rockers, Whale. In
the hit single, "Make It Right" under his own name, and in 2008, he
scored a Top 40 hit with "Dream On" in the UK (sadly,
Jaan died while bravely fighting pancreatic cancer)
b. April 25th
2015: Mario Sereni
(87) Italian operatic baritone, born in Perugia; he enjoyed a long
and steady career at the Metropolitan Opera, for twenty-seven seasons, he sang
most of the important baritone roles of the Italian repertory in opera such as
Ernani, Luisa Miller, Il trovatore, La traviata, Un ballo in maschera, La forza
del destino, Don Carlo, and Aida. He also sang in La Gioconda, Cavalleria rusticana,
Manon Lescaut, La bohème, and Madama Butterfly, as well as L'elisir d'amore
and Lucia di Lammermoor. Mario was also a regular guest at the opera houses of
Chicago, San Francisco and Dallas. He also enjoyed a successful international
career appearing frequently at the Vienna State Opera, La Scala in Milan and the
Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. (?)
b. March 25th 1928.
Marni Nixon/Margaret Nixon McEathron (86) American soprano and playback
singer for featured actresses in movie musicals. Born in Altadena, she was a child
actress and began singing at an early age in choruses, including performing solos
with the Roger Wagner Chorale. Her career in film started in 1948 when she sang
the voices of the angels heard by Ingrid Bergman in Joan of Arc (1948). The same
year, she did her first dubbing work when she provided Margaret O'Brien's singing
voice in 1948's Big City and then 1949's The Secret Garden. She also dubbed Marilyn
Monroe's high notes in "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" in Gentlemen
Prefer Blondes (1953). She appeared on Broadway in 1954 in The Girl in Pink Tights,
and dubbed the singing voices of the leading actresses in films, including "The
King and I", "West Side Story" and "My Fair Lady", among
many others. Besides her voice work in films, her varied career included some
film roles of her own, television, opera, concerts with major symphony orchestras
around the world, musicals on stage throughout the United States, and recordings.
died fighting breast cancer) b. February 22nd 1930.
2016: Horacio Olivo (83)
Puerto Rican actor, comedian, and television/radio personality, as well
as a classically trained singer. Born in Dorado, he is perhaps best known as the
booming voice behind the comedy troupe, Los Rayos Gamma. One of the Rayos Gamma's
better known parodies was Horacio's hugely popular antagonistic ode to the U.S.
Navy, based on Agustín Lara's song "Granada".
(?) b. 1933.
Keith Gemmell (68) English saxophonist,
clarinetist, and flute player born in Hackney, London. Influenced by bands such
as Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames, Sounds Incorporated and The Mar-Keys he decided
to take up the saxophone and began playing in local bands. Aged 17, he turned
fully professional, joining Bognor Regis based band The Noblemen and between August
1965 and May 1966, toured Europe playing in clubs, US bases and the Piper Club
in Rome. On returning to the UK he helped form the Hackney band, The Lloyd Alexander
Blues Band, who later metamorphosed into Audience in 1969. Keith left in 1972
to join Stackridge, and later joined Sammy, whose sole album was produced by Ian
Gillan of Deep Purple, then on to The Roy Young Band. During this time he was
also doing session work and arranging, often together with film soundtrack writer
John Altman, before joining the Pasadena Roof Orchestra for fourteen years. Upon
leaving the PRO, he built a second freelance career, this time as a writer of
both words (music technology) and music (composing and arranging). In 2004 Audience
reformed, and Keith continued to tour
and record with them until 2013. (sadly died fighting throat
February 15th 1948.
Herbert Murrill (43)
English composer and organist, born in London; he studied
at the Royal Academy of Music from 1925 to 1928 and an organ scholar at Worcester
College, Oxford, from 1928 to 1931. His works include a jazz opera, Man in Cage,
which was performed in 1930 while he was still at university. He wrote film scores
for And So To Work and The Daily Round, both early films from the director Richard
Massingham. He wrote
several piano pieces, two
cello concertos and some chamber and vocal pieces. His most frequently performed
works are his choral and organ works: his setting of the Magnificat and Nunc dimittis
in E major, an organ piece called Carillon, and his arrangement for organ of the
orchestral march Crown Imperial by William Walton. His piano duet arrangement
of William Walton's First Symphony was published by OUP.
also worked for the BBC from 1936 onwards, reaching the post of Head of Music
May 11th 1909
Robertson (74) American
composer and music educator, born
in Fountain Green, Utah, he studied violin, composition, and public school music
at the New England Conservatory and in Europe. He received an MA degree from the
University of Utah and a Ph.D from the University of Southern California. He was
chairman of the music department at Brigham Young University from 1925 to 1948
and at the University of Utah from 1948 to 1962. Leroy was instrumental in the
promotion of the Utah Symphony and of classical music in Salt Lake City. He is
best known for his Oratorio from the Book of Mormon. The setting of the Lord's
Prayer from that oratorio was recorded by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and released
as a 45 single on the flip side of the Battle Hymn of the Republic, which hit
the top 50 charts. Amongst his works in the 1948 LDS hymnal was the music for
"Up! Arose Thee, O Beautiful Zion". In the 1985 edition of the LDS hymnal
there is one hymn with words by Leroy and 8 hymns for which he wrote the music
(?) b. December 21st 1896.
1984: Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton (57) American
rhythm and blues singer and songwriter. Born
in Ariton, Alabama, she wrote
and sang her blues songs, played the harmonica, taught herself to play the drums
was the first to record the hit song "Hound Dog" in 1952. The song was
No.1 on the Billboard R&B charts for seven weeks. The B-side was "They
Call Me Big Mama," and the single sold almost two million copies. In a similar
occurrence, she wrote and recorded "Ball 'n' Chain," which became a
hit for her. Others of many songs she recorded included "Everything Gonna
Be Alright", "Big Mama's Blues", "I'm Feeling Alright",
"Big Mama's Bumble Bee Blues", "Looking The World Over", "Big
Mama's Shuffle", and "Since I Fell For You", "Wade in the
Water", "Little Red Rooster", "Money Taker", and "Prison
Blues". Big Mama
appeared on all the top stages from New York City's Apollo Theatre in 1952 to
the Newport Jazz Festival in 1983, and has been nominated for the Blues Music
Awards six times. (sadly died from heart failure)
b. December 11th 1926.
1987: Alex Sadkin (38)
American record producer;
while at Florida State University in Tallahassee he played bass guitar in a college
band, after which he actually got his start in the music industry as saxophonist
for the Las Olas Brass in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He got his first big break
after impressing Neil Young with his mixing ability, and he eventually became
head engineer at Compass Point Studio in Nassau, Bahamas. He worked alongside
Island Records boss Chris Blackwell on many of the label's projects, most famously
with Bob Marley & The Wailers. He began producing artists for Island Records
such as Grace Jones, Marianne Faithfull, Robert Palmer, Joe Cocker, while doing
mixing work for other labels. Among the other artists he produced in the 1980s
are James Brown, the J. Geils Band, Thompson Twins, Classix Nouveaux, Foreigner,
Duran Duran, Simply Red, Arcadia and Paul Haig. (tragically
Alex died in a motor accident in Nassau, shortly after completing production work
on Boom Crash Opera's eponymous 1987 album)
b. April 9th 1949.
1995: Charlie Rich aka
The Silver Fox
(62) American country
singer & pianist playing in the rockabilly, jazz, blues, country, and gospel
genres. He started out as a
session musician for Judd Records, owned by Jud Phillips, the brother of Sun Records
founder Sam Phillips. In 1958, he became a regular session musician for Sun Records
playing on records by Lewis, Johnny Cash, Bill Justis, Warren Smith, Billy Lee
Riley, Carl Mann, and Ray Smith. He also wrote songs for Lewis, Cash, and others.
He released a few solo singles with Sun before moving to RCA's Groove Label. His
first single for Groove, "Big Boss Man," was a minor hit, but went on
to become one of the most critically acclaimed and most erratic country singers
of post-World War II era. He
is perhaps best remembered for a pair of 1973 hits, "Behind Closed Doors"
and "The Most Beautiful Girl". Charlie appeared as himself in the 1979
Clint Eastwood movie, Every Which Way But Loose, in which he performed the song,
"I'll Wake You Up When I Get Home" . He was honoured with 13 awards
including 2 grammies (died in his sleep from a blood clot in his lung) b.
December 14th 1932.
1998: Tal Farlow (77)
American jazz guitarist, born in Greensboro, North Carolina he is nearly
as famous for his reluctance to perform publicly as for his outstanding abilities,
he did not take up the instrument until he was 21, but within a year was playing
professionally and in 1948 was with Marjorie Hyams' band. While with the Red Norvo
Trio from 19491953, he became famous in the jazz world. His huge hands and
ability to play rapid yet light lines, which earned him the nickname "Octopus",
made him one of the top guitarists of the era. After six months with Artie Shaw's
Gramercy Five in 1953, Tal put together his own group, which for a time included
pianist Eddie Costa. (sadly Tal died of cancer)
b. June 7th 1921.
2003: Erik Keith Brann
(52) American rock guitarist, born in
Boston, Massachusetts; as a violinist, Erik was accepted as a child into the prodigy
program at the Boston Symphony Orchestra, but was wanting to become a rock guitarist,
joining Iron Butterfly at 16. He played with Ron Bushy, Lee Dorman and Doug Ingle
from 1967 to 1969. He is featured on the band's greatest hit, the legendary 17-minute
piece In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida which sold over 20 million copies, went platinum and
stayed on Billboard magazine's charts for over a year. He also wrote the song
"Termination," which was featured on the In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida album, recorded
when he was just 17. In he formed the band Flintwhistle. In 1974, he reunited
with a new version of Iron Butterfly recording albums "Scorching Beauty",
and "Sun and Steel". Erik occasionally reunited with Iron Butterfly
for concerts, and was working on his solo debut before his death (heart
attack) b. August 11th 1950.
Albert Mangelsdorff (76)
German bandleader and trombonist; one of the most innovative trombonists of
modern jazz who became famous for his distinctive technique of playing multiphonics.
At the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, he performed as unaccompanied trombonist
in a concert set. In the 1970s he made his
first solo recordings and collaborated
with Elvin Jones, Jaco Pastorius and Alphonse Mouzon, John Surman, Barre Phillips
and Stu Martin and others. In 1975 he was co-founder of the United Jazz and Rock
Ensemble that existed for more than 30 years, and recorded duo albums with Wolfgang
Dauner (?) b. September
Hiram Bullock (52)
American jazz funk and fusion guitarist; notable for his time on the David Letterman
Show and work with David Sanborn. He also did work for Marcus Miller, Carla Bley,
Miles Davis, Ruben Rada and Gil Evans. He
recorded as a member of the 24th Street Band, releasing 3 albums. In 1982 he released
his debut-album, called First Class Vagabond, which was exclusively distributed
for the Japanese music-market by the JVC-Victor Company, and later re-issued on
CD (throat cancer) b. September 11th 1955
2008: Johnny Griffin (80) American
bop and hard bop tenor saxophonist; once known as the "fastest tenor in the
west", for the ease with which he could execute fast note runs. He
joined Art Blakey in 1957, his recordings at that time include a memorable album
joining together the Messengers and Thelonious Monk, after which he succeeded
John Coltrane as a member of Monk's Five Spot quartet and was recording for Blue
Note and the Riverside label.
1960-62 he and Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis led their own quintet. He moved
to France and regularly appeared under his own name at jazz clubs such as London's
Ronnie Scott's, he became the "first choice" sax player for visiting
US musicians touring the continent. He went on to record albums with Wes Montgomery,
The Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland Big Band, Peter Herbolzheimer And His Big Band,
Nat Adderley, Derek Watkins, Art Farmer, Slide Hampton, Jiggs Whigham, Herb Geller,
Wilton Gaynair, Stan Getz, Gerry Mulligan, Rita Reys, Jean "Toots" Thielemans,
Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, Grady Tate, Quincy Jones and others. Johnny
played his last concert with his supurb French band on July 21st 2008 in Hyères,
France a week before he died (died
of a heart attack in Availles-Limouzine, France, where he had lived for the past
24 years) b. April 24th 1928.
Frances Stroface (61) US
singer, songwriter and producer; a native New Yorker, Claires lifelong musical
career began in high school on Long Island when she produced and fronted an all-girl
doo-wop group. After moving to Massachusetts, she sang with a number of female
rock bands through the 70s and 80s, such as Lilith, Liberty Standing, The Ina
Ray Band, and Trans-Sister.
Claire also handled their stage production, musical arrangements,
business management, and studio production, as well as contributing >>>
More <<< (Sadly Claire
died after a long illness) b. August 21st 1946.
2010: Manfred Schulze (76) German jazz
baritone saxophonist, clarinetist and trombonist. Born in Switzerland, he was
a highly influencial musician on the German jazz scene. Over 4 decades he played
in many jazz groups including Hermann Keller Werkstattorchester, Berliner
Zerbe Trio/Quintet, Orchester Eberhard Weise, Manfred Schulze Formation to mention
just a few (?)
b. August 17th 1934.
2011: Mike Reaves (52) American
rock guitarist and founder member of of The Voodoo Hippies who became Full Devil
Jacket. Their year 2000 self-titled LP Full Devil Jacket quickly went gold and
the band toured with Creed, Nickelback, Type O Negative, played at Woodstock 99,
and was featured on the Tattoo the Earth tour with Mudvayne, Slipknot, Sepultura,
Slayer, and Coal Chamber with Metallica headlining one show. After Full Devil
Jacket, Mike toured Europe with the band Travisty and briefly worked with the
pop singer Jasmine Cain. He also wrote and recorded with Randy Lovelace around
Jackson, Tennessee. At the time of his untimely death, Mike lived in Dyersburg,
Tennessee and played with a band named 3 Legged Dog (Sadly
Mike died fighting prostate
2011: Malcom " Malky" Higgins (79)
Scottish trumpet player and sometime vocalist
of the Clyde Valley Stompers, a trad jazz band who built up a huge fan base not
only in Scotland but throughout the UK and across the Atlantic in the 1950s and
early 1960s. His piercing
trumpet was a feature of the top-of-the-ratings Lonnie Donegan show. The Stompers
toured with Donegan and such top names as Louis Armstrong, Shirley Bassey, Petula
Clark and blues legend Big Bill Broonzy.
Malcolm emigrated to Canada in 1967 and over
his long and distinguished jazz career he has played trumpet with the likes of
Canal Street Jazzmen, Clyde Valley Stompers, Metro Stompers, Eddie Condon, The
Hot Five Jazzmakers, Southern Comfort and many celebrities on both sides of the
in Toronto, Ontario Canada)
April 4th 1932.
2013: Steve Berrios (68) American
jazz drummer and percussionist born in New York City. He started playing trumpet,
before the drums and often performs in the Afro-Cuban jazz medium, having played
with Pucho & His Latin Soul Brothers and Mongo Santamaría. He has also
worked with artists such as Kenny Kirkland, Art Blakey, Michael Brecker, The Harlem
Experiment and many
(?) b. February 24th 1945.
2013: Kongar-ol Ondar (51)
Russian Tuvan throat singer and doshpuluur (wooden lute) player, born near the
Khemchik River in western Tuva and considered a living treasure by the Republic
of Tuva. He became known outside Tuva after American blues musician Paul Pena
went Tuva. Pena, who had learned throat singing before going to Tuva, was the
subject of the documentary "Genghis Blues" in which Kongar-ol was also
performed at Frank Zappa's eclectic "garden party / soiree" gathering,
has appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman and he also appears on the
Béla Fleck and the Flecktones albums Outbound, album and DVD 'Live at the
Quick' and 'Jingle All the Way'. He released one solo album "Back Tuva Future"
on Warner Bros
(tragically Kongar-ol died after emergency surgery for a
brain hemorrhage) b. March
2013: Walter Joseph De Maria (77) American
sculptor, drummer and composer born in Albany, CA; he studied history and art
at the University of California, Berkeley from 1953 to 1959, although trained
as a painter, he turned to sculpture. In 1960, he moved to New York City, where,
in 1965 he became the drummer in the New York-based rock group The Primitives
and an artist/musician collaborative group called The Druds. The group included
Lou Reed and John Cale and was a precursor to The Velvet Underground (In
May 2013, Walter went to
Los Angeles to celebrate his mothers
100th birthday, he suffered a stroke there a few days later. He remained in LA
for treatment, but sadly died of a stroke)
2014: Carlo Bergonzi (90) Italian
operatic tenor born in Polisene, where he sang in church and soon began to appear
in children's opera roles in Busetto. Although he went on to perform and record
some bel canto and verismo roles, he was above all associated with the operas
of Giuseppe Verdi, including a large number of the composer's lesser known works
that he helped revive. Additionally, he sang more than 40 other roles throughout
his long international career, appearing at all the major venues. He is considered
as one of the 20th centurys most distinguished operatic tenors (?)
1933: Rev. Dr. Charles Albert Tindley (83) American
Methodist minister and gospel music composer born in Berlin, Maryland. He
is often referred to as "The Prince of Preachers", he educated himself,
became a minister and founded one of the largest Methodist congregations serving
the African-American community on the East Coast of the United States. The Tindley
Temple United Methodist Church in Philadelphia was named for him. He was also
noted songwriter and composer of gospel hymns and is recognized as one of the
founding fathers of American gospel music. Five of his hymns appear in the revised
Methodist hymnal, which is used worldwide. His composition "I'll Overcome
Someday" is credited by some observers to be the basis for the U.S. Civil
Rights anthem "We Shall Overcome,". The song "We Shall Overcome"
was composed by artists at the Highlander Folk School in 1947: Tindley's song
had been brought to the school in the 1930s by tobacco workers from Charleston,
South Carolina (?) b. July
1990: Brent Mydland (38)
keyboardist, songwriter; born in Munich, Germany he moved to San Francisco, California
with his parents at the age of one. In 1978, Brent had played the Bob Weir Band,
joined the Grateful Dead in
April 1979. He also played in another of Weir's bands, Bobby and the Midnitesin
1980 and 1981. He
was keyboardist with The Dead for 11 years, longer than any other keyboardist.
His songwriting contributions included "Far From Me" and "Easy
to Love You", "Hell in a Bucket" "Tons of Steel". "Just
a Little Light" "We Can Run", and "I Will Take You Home".
His last show with them was on 23 July 1990 at The World Music Theatre in Tinley
Park, IL (sadly died of a drug overdose at his home on in
Lafayette, California, shortly after completing the Grateful Dead's summer tour)
b. October 21st 1952.
1992: Mary Wells (49) American
singer and Motown artist; with a string of hit singles mainly composed by Smokey
Robinson including "Two Lovers" in 1962, the Grammy-nominated "You
Beat Me to the Punch" in 1962 and her signature hit in 1964, "My Guy",
she became recognized as "The Queen of Motown" until her departure from
the company in 1964, at the height of her popularity. In other circles, she's
referred to as the "The First Lady of Motown" and was one of Motown's
first singing superstars. Mary came to the attention of Berry Gordy as a 17-year-old,
hawking a song she'd written for Jackie Wilson; that song, "Bye Bye Baby,"
became her first Motown hit in 1961, and "My Guy" hit the number one
spot in mid-1964, at the very height of Beatlemania and became the first Motown
hit in UK. After a fall-out with Motown at the height of her career she signed
with 20th Century Fox and also later with the Atlantic Records subsidiary Atco,
then Jubilee Records, where she scored her final pop hit, "The Doctor",
a song she co-wrote with then-husband Cecil Womack. Two years later Mary left
the label for the Warner Music subsidiary Reprise Records and released two Bobby
Womack-produced singles before deciding to retire from music altogether in 1974
to raise her family. She made a come back in the 80's, bit in 1990 doctors diagnosed
Mary with laryngeal cancer. Treatments for the disease ravaged her voice, forcing
her to quit her music career. (She sadly lost her brave
battle with throat cancer) b. May 13th 1943.
Laurindo Almeida (77) Brazilian
classical guitarist; born in Sao Paulo, Laurindo made a name for himself in Rio
de Janeiro, then in 1947 he was asked to the US by Stan Kenton to join his band,
after which he was employed as a studio musician. In 1953 he recorded, with Bud
Shank, two albums called Brazilliance for the World Pacific label. He also recorded
with Baden Powell, Stan Getz and Herbie Mann, among others, and recorded for film
and television. From
1974 through 1982 he was a member of the chamber Jazz group The L.A. Four. In
1961, he won Grammy Awards for Best Engineered Album, Classical and Best Chamber
Music Performance. The following year he won Grammy Awards for Best Classical
Performance - Instrumental Soloist or Duo and Best Contemporary Classical Composition
and in 1965 he won Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Jazz Performance - Large
Group or Soloist with Large Group (?)
b. September 2nd 1917.
2001: Helmut Brandt (69)
German baritone saxophonist; played tenor/baritone
saxophone and clarinet as the leader of an amateur dixieland group, entertaining
American troops after WW II. He won enormous popularity in the American jazz clubs,
made many recordings, appeared as an honoured guest at jazz festivals and played
with many international stars () b.
January 1st 1931.
Riggins Jr (77) American
R&B pianist born in Marshall, Texas. He was influenced by blues, gospel, jazz
and country music growing up. His family moved to LA, California in 1942, where
he met his influence Charles Brown.
He signed to Modern Records in 1949, specializing in jump blues and sexualized
songs like "Red Cherries", "Wine Wine Wine", "Too Much
Jelly Roll" and "Baby Let's Go Down to The Woods". When Brown left
Johnny Moore's Three Blazers in 1950 to go solo, Floyd replaced him as pianist
and singer and recorded with the band and had a hit under his own name in 1952
with "Call Operator 210". Other hits include "Hey Bartender"
and "Hole In The Wall" were hit singles during this time. Floyd semi
retired in the late 60's, but did occasional tours in the 1970s and 1980s. In
1984 he was commissioned to write "Olympic Blues" for the 1984 Summer
Olympics. In 1993, Dixon received a Pioneer Award from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation
and in the mid 1990s, he secured a contract with Alligator Records, releasing
the critically-acclaimed album, Wake Up And Live (sadly
Floyd died from kidney failure) b.
February 8th 1929.
2007: Lars Hans Carl Abraham Forssell (79)
Swedish writer and member of the Swedish Academy
born in Stockholm. He was a versatile writer who worked within many genres, and
awarded the Bellman Prize in both 1968 and 1981, the Pilot Prize in 1992, the
Litteris et Artibus award in 1993, the Cornelis Vreeswijk scholarship in 1997
and the Swedish Academy's Nordic Prize in 1998. His works include anthologies
of poetry, books of song lyrics, children's books, plays, operatic librettos and
b. January 14th 1928.
Johnnie Mac "Uncle John" Turner (62)
American blues drummer born and raised in Port Arthur,
Texas; he was one of the founders of the blues-rock style of drumming and a Texas
legend. He played with countless artists including B. B. King, Jimi Hendrix, Freddie
King, Muddy Waters, Junior Wells, Lightnin' Hopkins, Johnny Copeland, Albert Collins,
Willie Dixon, Lazy Lester and Johnny Winter at Woodstock
(sadly died with complications of hepatitis C)
b. August 20th 1944.
2010: Ben Keith Schaeufele (73)
American multi-musician and record producer, better known by his stage name Ben
Keith. One of his early successes was his steel guitar playing on Patsy Cline's
1961 hit "I Fall to Pieces" and was a fixture of the Nashville country
music community in the 1950s and 1960s. Since then Ben is known primarily for
his work as a pedal steel guitarist with Neil Young and has worked with numerous
successful rock, country and pop artists as both a producer and versatile, multi-instrumentalist
sideman for over four decades, working with the likes of Terry Reid, J. J. Cale,
Todd Rundgren, Lonnie Mack, The Band, Blue, David Crosby, Graham Nash, Willie
Nelson, Paul Butterfield, Linda Ronstadt, Warren Zevon, Ian and Sylvia, Emmylou
Harris, Waylon Jennings, Anne Murray and Ringo Starr. He also served as the producer
of Jewel's debut album Pieces of You, and has worked as solo artist. He toured
with Crosby Stills Nash & Young on their 2006 Freedom of Speech tour. (Sadly
died of a heart attack while at Neil Young's
March 6th 1937.
2010: Al Goodman (63) American
baritone soul singer;
along with Harry Ray and William Brown, he
was a member of the Moments, an R&B group that formed in Hackensack, New Jersey,
in 1968. Al became a member in 1969. They topped the soul charts in 1970 with
"Love on a Two Way Street" and again in 1975 with "Look at Me (I'm
in Love)". The Moments were also co-credited with labelmates The Whatnauts
on their hit "Girls (Part 1)", which only made No.25 on the U.S. R&B
charts, but became one of their biggest international successes, reaching No.3
on the UK singles chart in 1975. Harry and Al were also strongly involved in writing
and producing much of their material from the mid 1970s as well as performing
production and writing duties for All-Platinum's other artists. By
1979, the group had had a total of 27 R&B chart hits, In 1978, the trio renamed
itself Ray, Goodman and Brown and the following year, they had a No.1 hit with
"Special Lady." The group made regular appearances on the soul charts
into the 1980s. Their last Top Ten single was in 1986. (Sadly,
Al died of heart failure during surgery to remove a tumor at Hackensack Medical
Centre in New Jersey)
b. March 31st 1947
Frank Foster (82) American jazz saxophonist and
composer, born in Cincinnati, Ohio, he moved to Detroit, Michigan in 1949 where
he joined the local jazz scene, playing with musicians such as Wardell Gray. After
finishing his military service in 1953 he joined Count Basie's big band and contributed
both arrangements and original compositions to Count Basies band including
the standard, Shiny Stockings, and other popular songs such as Down
for the Count, Blues Backstage, Back to the Apple,
Discommotion, and Blues in Hoss Flat as well as arrangements
for the entire Easin It album. He also played with Elvin Jones, the Thad
JonesMel Lewis big band, the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston.
From 1972 to 1976, he was full-time Assistant Professor in the Black Studies Program
at the State University >>> READ
MORE <<< (sadly died of complications
from kidney failure) b. September
Joe Arroyo/Álvaro José Arroyo González (55)
singer born Cartagena de Indias, Bolívar; at the age of eight he was singing
in brothels in Tesco, a red-light zone in his hometown, before he began singing
with groups like "Manuel Villanueva y su Orquesta",
"Los Caporales del Magdalena", and "Super Combo Los Diamantes".
1971 Joe was discovered by Julio Ernesto Estrada, the bass player and singer of
the band Fruko y sus Tesos and signed up with Colombian record label Disco Fuentes.
He performed with the band for ten years until in 1981 when he began his solo
career leading his own band, "La Verdad"/The Truth. He became very successful
by mixing salsa, soca, kompa, zouk and other music from the African Diaspora in
a unique style that has earned him the prefix of Chonero de la Salsa by critics
and fans. Some of his most famous songs are "Rebelión" and "En
Barranquilla me Quedo (after
spending nearly a month in a Barranquilla hospital, Joe sadly died from the effects
of multiorgan failure) b. November 1st 1955.
2011: Tim Smooth (39)
rapper and was considered a pioneer of New Orleans hip-hop. He established his
reputation as an MC while still a teenager; in an interview last year, he recalled
sneaking out of L.W. Higgins High School in Marrero at lunchtime to battle other
rappers on their schools playgrounds. In 1991, he released his first single,
I Gotsta Have It, for Dallas-based Yo! Records, and label-hopped after
that, putting out albums on Houstons Rap-A-Lot label and the local indies
Big Boy and Mobo. At
Big Boy Records, he met and mentored Mystikal. During a respite from his illness,
he made an appearance on the mic with his old friend during a House of Blues concert
last December (sadly
Tim died fighting cancer) b. ????
JJ Cale/John Weldon Cale (74) American award-winning
singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist; born in Oklahoma City, he was raised
in Tulsa, and graduated from Tulsa Central High School in 1956. Along with a number
of young Tulsa musicians, he moved to L.A. in the early 1960s, where he first
worked as a studio engineer. Finding little success as a recording artist, he
later returned to Tulsa and was considering giving up the music business until
Eric Clapton recorded his "After Midnight" in 1970 and his first album,
"Naturally", established his style, described by Los Angeles Times writer
Richard Cromelin as a "unique hybrid of blues, folk and jazz. Between 1972
-2009 John recorded 16 solo albums and his biggest U.S. hit single, "Crazy
Mama", peaked at No.22 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1972. Many
songs written by John have been covered by other musicians including
Light" by Eric Clapton, "Call Me the Breeze" by Lynyrd Skynyrd,
by Waylon Jennings and Dr. Hook and Captain
Beefheart covered "Same Old Blues" on his album Bluejeans & Moonbeams.
1992 track "Run" on Spiritualized's debut album, Lazer Guided Melodies
is essentially a cover of Cale's "Call Me the Breeze" with some additional
lyrics and JJ is given songwriting credit on the album (sadly
John died of a heart attack) b.
December 5th 1938.
Vic Firth/Everett Joseph Firth (85) American
musician and the founder of Vic Firth Company, a company that makes percussion
sticks and mallets. (sadly died from pancreatic cancer)
b. June 2nd 1930.
2015: Pía Sebastiani (90) Argentine
pianist and composer born in Buenos Aires. In 1941, she composed and performed
a concert for piano and orchestra.
His piano career took her to some of the most important clubs in the world, such
as Carnegie Hall and Wigmore Hall. She taught
at the Ball State University School of Music and was a member of the Beethoven
b. February 27th 1925.
2015: Bobbi Kristina Brown (22) American
media personality and singer () b.
2015: Wolfgang Gönnenwein (82)
German conductor and music director, general intendant of Staatstheater Stuttgart
Samuel C. "Sandy" Pearlman (72) American music producer,
artist manager, professor, songwriter, poet, and record company executive. He
was best known for founding, writing for and producing or co-producing many LPs
by Blue Öyster Cult, as well as producing important albums by The Clash,
The Dictators, Pavlov's Dog, Space Team Electra and Dream Syndicate, and for being
the founding Vice President of eMusic.com. Over his career Sandy was the recipient
of 17 gold and platinum records. He was also the Schulich Distinguished Professor
Chair at the Schulich School of Music at McGill University in Montreal, and from
August 2014 held a Marshall McLuhan Centenary Fellowship at the Coach House Institute
of the University of Toronto Faculty of Information as part of the CHI's McLuhan
Program in Culture and Technology. He worked as a full-time artist manager, managing
the careers of Blue Öyster Cult, Black Sabbath (19791983), Romeo Void,
The Dictators, Shakin' Street, Aldo Nova and others. In the 1980s, he pioneered
the mega-tour stadium format of several bands traveling together, sharing promotional
costs and production and travel costs, a format persisting today with the Lollapalooza
Festival, the Lilith Fair and related tour packages. (?)
b. August 8th 1943.
1978: Jan Willem van Otterloo (70)
Dutch conductor, cellist and composer,
born in Winterswijk, Gelderland. He qualified to study medicine at Utrecht University
but switched to studying cello and composition at the Amsterdam Conservatoire.
While playing as a cellist in the Utrecht Stedelijk Orkest, he won a composition
prize from the Concertgebouw Orchestra for his Suite No.3, which he presented
in his 1932 conducting debut, also with that orchestra. He held posts with the
Utrecht Stedelijk Orkest, before being appointed chief conductor of the Residentie
Orkest in The Hague from 1949-1973. Jan spent 11 years in Australia, from 1967
to 1970 he was chief conductor of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and in 1971
he was appointed chief conductor of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, where he remained
until 1978. He made recordings, with Residentie Orkest, Concertgebouworkest, Berlin
Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony, Orchestre Lamoureux and the
Sydney Symphony (tragically
died in East St Kilda, Melbourne from injuries suffered in an automobile accident,
not long after his farewell performance with the Sydney Symphony)
b. December 27th 1907.
1990: Bobby Day/Robert James Byrd (62)
African American rock and roll and R&B singer and keyboardist;
known songwriting efforts were "Over and Over" made popular by the Dave
Clark Five in 1965 and "Little Bitty Pretty One" popularized by Thurston
Harris in 1957, Clyde McPhatter in 1962 and the Jackson Five in 1972. However,
Bobby is most remembered for his 1958 solo recording of the Billboard Hot 100
No. 2 hit, "Rockin' Robin", written by Leon Rene under the pseudonym
Jimmie Thomas. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc
(sadly died after his fight with cancer)
July 1st 1928.
1995: Miklós Rózsa (88) Hungarian-born
American composer and conductor, best known for his numerous film scores. He is
considered to be one of the "founding fathers" of film music. He
was one of the most respected and popular composers working in Hollywood and is
also regarded today as one of the greatest film score composers of all time. In
a career that spanned over 50 years, he composed music for nearly 100 films, including
Spellbound-1945, Quo Vadis-1951, Ben-Hur-1959, and King of Kings-1961. Miklos
is one of the most nominated composers in Oscar history: he had 16 nominations
and three Oscars. He also had 3 Golden Globe nominations, and a Grammy Award nomination
for the MGM Records album of Ben-Hur (?)
b. April 18th 1907
1999: Harry "Sweets" Edison (83) American
jazz trumpet player
born in Columbus, Ohio, but spent his
early childhood in Kentucky. In 1933, he became a member of the Jeter-Pillars
Orchestra in Cleveland. Afterwards he played with the Mills Blue Rhythm Band and
Lucky Millinder. In 1937 he moved to New York and joined the Count Basie Orchestra.
His colleagues included Buck Clayton, Lester Young, who named him "Sweets",
Buddy Tate, Freddie Green, Jo Jones, and other original members of that famous
came to prominence as a soloist with the Basie Band and as an occasional composer-arranger
for the He also appeared in the 1944 film Jammin' The Blues. In the early 1950s,
he settled on the West Coast and became a highly sought-after studio musician,
In the 60s and 70s he continued to work in many orchestras on TV shows, including
Hollywood Palace and The Leslie Uggams Show, specials with Frank Sinatra; prominently
featured on the sound track and in the sound track album of the film, Lady Sings
October 10th 1915.
2001: Leon Russell
American bassist of Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd from 1972 until his death.
Born in Newport, Rhode Island but raised in Jacksonville, Florida, at about 12,
inspired by The Beatles, Leon began learning to play bass guitar copying his favorite
member of the Fab Four, Paul McCartney. Only wanting to play music, he dropped
out of his school band at the age of 14 and, soon he was playing bass with Ronnie
Zant's local group, the Collegiates. He had to leave the group and continue his
education and he began to study the 'lead bass style'. By the early '70s, Leon
was becoming one of Jacksonville's top bassists, and when Van Zant's new band,
Lynyrd Skynyrd, found themselves without a bassist, Leon jioned the line-up. After
the tragic plane crash on October 20, 1977 outside of Gillsburg, MS, which left
several bandmembers dead (including Ronnie Van Zant) and the rest badly injured,
grief-stricken, leon and the other survivors bowed out of the spotlight for the
remainder of the '70s. His left arm was so badly broken that doctors were considering
amputating it, never completely recovered from that injury - he had to play bass
in a more "upright" position. In 1980, he was a member of the Rossington-Collins
Band releasing their debut, Anytime Anyplace Anywhere, that same year. By 1987,
he signed on with a reunited version of Skynyrd, with Ronnie Van Zant's younger
brother, Johnny, supplying lead vocals. Skynyrd's 2003 album Vicious Cycle, the
band dedicated the song '"Mad
memory to Leon (chronic liver and lung disease)
b. April 2nd 1952.
2001: Harold Land (73)
hard bop and post-bop tenor saxophonist born in Houston, Texas, he evolved his
hard bop playing with the Max Roach/Clifford Brown band into a personal, modern
style. He moved to Los Angeles in 1955, where he played with Curtis Counce, led
his own groups, and co-led groups with Bobby Hutcherson, Blue Mitchell, and Red
Mitchell. From the 1970s onwards his style showed the influence of John Coltrane.
the early 1980s through to the early 1990s he worked regularly with the Timeless
All Stars, a group sponsored by the Timeless jazz record label. Harold
joined the UCLA Jazz Studies Program as a lecturer in 1996 to teach instrumental
jazz combo (died of a stroke)
February 18th 1928.
2003: Arthur "Artie" Anton
(77) Jazz musician, conga drums, drums, timbales,
a music major at New York University. From the late '40s onward, Anton began working
with leaders such as Herbie Fields, Sonny Dunham, Bobby Byrne, Tommy Reynolds
and Art Wall. In 1952 he got into the combo of the open-minded saxophonist Bud
Freeman, moving to pianist Ralph Flanagan's band the following year. After gigs
in 1954 with Jerry Gray and Charlie Barnet, Artie relocated to the west coast
and began freelancing. He performed and recorded with important bandleaders, from
the big band of Stan Kenton to multi-instrumentalist Jimmy
Guiffre's smaller units and played drums on tour with Frank Zappa when studio
ace drummer Jim Gordon got arrested in South Carolina for illegal drugs during
the 1972 Grand Wazoo tour ()
b. September 8th 1925.
2008: Horst Walter Stein (80) German
in Elberfeld; in 1952 he began work as a conducting assistant at the Bayreuth
Festival to such conductors as Joseph Keilberth, Hans Knappertsbusch, Clemens
Krauss and Herbert von Karajan. In 1955, at the invitation of Erich Kleiber, he
conducted at the opening of the restored Berlin State Opera, and subsequently
worked there as a Staatskapellmeister. From 1961-1963, he worked under the leadership
of Rolf Liebermann as deputy chief conductor at the Hamburg State Opera. From
1963-1970, he served as chief conductor and director of opera at the Mannheim
National Theatre and held a regular post at the Vienna State Opera from 1969-1971,
where he conducted 500 performances. He returned to the Hamburg State Opera as
General Music Director from 1972 to 1977. He
held principal conducting positions with the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, l'Orchestre
de la Suisse Romande and the Basel Symphony Orchestra. He was especially associated
with the music of Max Reger, and recorded several Reger works. He spent much time
training young conductors (?)
b. May 2nd 1928.
George Russell (86) American jazz pianist
and composer; considered one of the first jazz musicians to contribute to general
music theory with a theory of harmony based on Jazz rather than European music,
in his 1953 book, The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization. Although
learning piano from an early age, he started playing drums with the Boy Scouts
He received a scholarship to Wilberforce University, where he joined the Collegians.
George began playing drums in Benny Carter's band, but decided to give up drumming
as a vocation after hearing Max Roach. Inspired by hearing Thelonious Monk's "'Round
Midnight", he moved to New York in the early 1940s. His first famous composition
was for the Dizzy Gillespie Orchestra, the two-part "Cubano Be, Cubano Bop"
in 1947. George on piano, began leading a series of groups which have included
Bill Evans, John Coltrane, Art Farmer, Hal McKusick, Barry Galbraith, Milt Hinton,
Paul Motian and many others. In 1964, he toured Europe with his sextet and lived
in Scandinavia for five years. In the 1970s he was commissioned to write and record
3 major works: Listen to the Silence, a mass for orchestra and chorus for the
Norwegian Cultural Fund; Living Time, commissioned by Bill Evans for Columbia
Records; and Vertical Form VI for the Swedish Radio. (complications
from the cruel Alzheimer's disease) b. June
Harakami (40) Japanese
electronic musician, Kyoto-based,
but born in Hiroshima; he released
his debut album in 1998, and follow-up albums, Opa*q in 1999 and Red Curb in 2001
showcased his skills as an artist and producer. Rei's growing reputation resulted
in his becoming in demand as a producer and collaborator for artists such as UA,
Great 3 and Coldcut. His recent collaboration as an artist and producer was on
Akiko Yano's 2004 album, Honto no Kimochi/"True feelings", and resulted
in widespread recognition in Japan. Rei
regularly performed at some of Japan's big festivals such as Fuji Rock Festival,
Rising Sun Rock Festival, and Sonar Sound Tokyo. Rei had also actively participated
in several music showcases in France and Germany and in Sonar 2005 in Barcelona,
Spain where he appeared with Shiro Takatani. In 2007, he composed the music for
the film Tennen Kokekko/"A Gentle Breeze in the Village", and also started
a project with Akiko Yano, called Yanokami, which also debuted in 2007 (sadly
died from cerebrovascular disease)
b. December 10th 1970.
American actor, multi-instrumentalist and singer born in San Francisco; he received
a saxophone as a gift from his grandmother at the age of ten. He formed his first
band, named "The Red Peppers", when he was at Oakland Technical High
School, eventually joining the band of a local orchestra leader, Tom Gerun, as
a reed instrument specialist, sitting alongside a young Woody Herman. After college,
he left the band to go to Hollywood to try his luck in films and he adopted the
stage name of Tony Martin. He appeared in 23 films before the war and sang and
was master of ceremonies / singer on Tune-Up Time, with Andre Kostelanetz, on
CBS radio in the early 40s. As a corporal WWII he was assigned to Capt. Glenn
Miller's band, then promoted to technical sergeant in the Air Transport Command
and stationed in India. After the war he appeared in film musicals including Deep
in My Heart and Till the Clouds Roll By and from 1954 to 1956 The Tony Martin
Show, a 15-minute variety program, aired on NBC. Tony was married to actress and
dancer Cyd Charisse for 60 years, until her death in 2008. Both were staunch Republicans
who campaigned for Richard Nixon and together they wrote their joint memoirs entitled
"The Two of Us" (Tony died from natural causes)
b. December 25th 1913.
2013: Mick Farren (69)
British music journalist, author and singer born in Cheltenham;
from 1967-69 he was the singer with
the proto-punk band The Deviants, releasing 3 albums. During 1970 he released
the solo album MonaThe Carnivorous Circus after which he concentrated more
on his writing. During
the mid-1970s, he briefly revived his musical career, releasing the single "Play
With Fire" and "Broken Statue", the EP 'Screwed Up', album Vampires
Stole My Lunch Money. During the early 1970s he wrote for the UK Underground press
such as the International Times, also establishing Nasty Tales which he successfully
defended from an obscenity charge. He later wrote for the mainstream New Musical
Express, for which he wrote the article The Titanic Sails At Dawn, an analysis
of what he considered the malaise afflicting then-contemporary rock music and
which described the conditions that subsequently resulted in punk. Over his career
he wrote 23 novels, 11 works of non-fiction, a number of biographical, including
four on Elvis Presley, autobiographical and culture books such as The Black Leather
Jacket and much poetry
(Mick collapsed on stage while performing with his friends the Deviants at the
Borderline Club in London, tragically he failed to recover)
b. September 3rd 1943.
2015: Ndidani/Mtshengiseni Gcwensa (39)
South African Maskandi singer and was
part of the popular group Amageza Amahle. He was also a very successful solo artist
who won nine South African Traditional Music Awards (SATMA) including Best Song
of the Year Best Selling Album and Best Composer of the Year. His work was
also recognised by Amantshontsho KaMaskandi Awards (?)
b. 1976 ?
Rickey Grundy (56) American
gospel singer-songwriter born in in Los Angeles, and studied music at the University
of Southern California. His music recording career started in 1988, with the release
of "Spirit Come Down" which charted on the Billboard magazine Gospel
Albums chart at No. 22. The subsequent album, "The Rickey Grundy Chorale",
released in 1990, reached No. 10 on the same chart (?)
b. January 30th 1959.
2015: Ivan Moravec (84) Czech
concert pianist; he performed major recital works by Chopin, Debussy, Beethoven,
and Mozart, as well as Czech composers. He played with most of the world's notable
symphony orchestras, and his active piano concerto repertoire included more than
a dozen works by Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Schumann, Ravel, Prokofiev, and Franck.
He also taught music in Prague, and frequently gave master classes when on tour.
In 2000 he was awarded the Charles IV Prize, the Czech Republic's most prestigious
acknowledgement of service to humanity. The same year President Václav
Havel presented him with the Medal of Merit for outstanding artistic achievements.
In 2002 Ivan was awarded the Cannes Classical Award for lifetime achievement and
in 2010, the New York Times selected his s 1965 recording of Chopin's Nocturnes
as one of 5 representative works to showcase their celebration of the bicentenary
of Chopin's birth (?) b. November
1741: Antonio Vivaldi
composer, priest, and virtuoso violinist, born in Venice. Vivaldi is recognized
as one of the greatest Baroque composers, and his influence during his lifetime
was widespread over Europe. He is known mainly for composing instrumental concertos,
especially for the violin, as well as sacred choral works and over 40 operas.
His best known work is a series of violin concertos known as The Four Seasons.
Many of his compositions were written for the female music ensemble of the Ospedale
della Pietà, a home for abandoned children where he worked between 1703
and 1740. He also had some success with stagings of his operas in Venice, Mantua
and Vienna. Vivaldi received commissions from European nobility and royalty. The
wedding cantata Gloria e Imeneo was written for the marriage of Louis XV. Vivaldi's
Opus 9, La Cetra, was dedicated to Emperor Charles VI, who gave Vivaldi the title
of knight, a gold medal and an invitation to Vienna.
In 1728, Vivaldi moved to Vienna but he Emperor died soon after Vivaldi's arrival,
and the composer was left without royal protection and without a steady source
of income. Though
Vivaldi's music was well received during his lifetime, it later declined in popularity
until its vigorous revival in the first half of the 20th century. Today, Vivaldi
ranks among the most popular and widely recorded Baroque composers. (Vivaldi
died not long after the emperor of "internal infection", and was sadly
buried as a pauper)
b. March 4th 1678.
1750: Johann Sebastian Bach (65) German
composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist
() b.March 21st 1685
Eddie Costa (31)
jazz pianist and vibraphonist
born in Atlas, Pennsylvania near Mount Carmel, PA in Northumberland County. In
1957's he led a quintet that included Phil Woods, Art Farmer, Teddy Kotick, and
Paul Motian; their repertoire featured interpretations of "I Didn't Know
What Time It Was" and Dave Brubeck's "In Your Own Sweet Way," the
latter of which focused on Eddie's vibes and Farmer's muted trumpet, with Woods
switching to the piano. His next recording in 1958's "Guys and Dolls like
Vibes" recording with Bill Evans now reissued as "Bill Evans and Eddie
Costa, Complete Quartet" on CD. (He tragically died
in a car accident on New York's Westside Highway)
b. August 14th 1930.
1969: Frank Henry Loesser (59) American songwriter
born in New York City who wrote the scores to the Broadway hits including "Guys
and Dolls", "Where's Charley?", and "How To Succeed In Business
Without Really Trying", among others. He won Tony Awards, Pulitzer Prizes
and Academy awards, writings lyrics for over 700 songs. He also wrote numerous
songs for films and Tin Pan Alley, many of which have become standards, and was
nominated for five Academy Awards for best song, winning once for "Baby,
It's Cold Outside". Other
of 100s of songs include "Luck Be a Lady Tonight", "On a Slow Boat
to China", "The Ballad of Rodger Young", "Never Will I Marry"
and "Inch Worm"
(sadly Frank died of lung cancer)
b. June 29th 1910.
American operatic soprano born in St. Louis,
and in 1924 he debuted with the Saint Louis Symphony. To continue her training
there, she declined an offer from New Yorks Metropolitan Opera, but did
move to New York in the late 1930s. Helen was the Mets premier Wagnerian
soprano until she left in 1953 to appear in nightclubs, on television and in movies.
With her joyous confidence and booming laughter, she broke down barriers in a
stratified society and proved that an American could succeed in the European-dominated
opera world. For her contribution to the recording industry, Helen has a star
on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6422 Hollywood Blvd. In 1994 she was inducted
into the St. Louis Walk of Fame (?) b.
June 16th 1899.
1982: Keith Gordon Green (28)
American gospel singer, songwriter, pianist, guitarist, bass guitar, percussion,
and Contemporary Christian Music artist originally from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn,
New York. Beyond his music, which shook the Christian world and recording industry,
Green is best known for his strong devotion to Christian evangelism and challenging
others to the same. Often considered controversial for his frequently confrontational
lyrics and spoken messages, some notable songs written by Gordon and /or his wife,
Melody Green, include "Your Love Broke Through," "You Put This
Love In My Heart," and "Asleep In The Light".
Gordon is also known for numerous popular modern hymns, including "O Lord,
You're Beautiful" and "There Is A Redeemer."(died
when a small airplane leased by Last Days Ministries crashed on takeoff)
b. October 21st 1953.
1996: Marguerite "Marge" Ganser (48) American
and founder member of the vocal group the Shangri-Las, which
consisted of two sets of sisters:
identical twins Marguerite "Marge" and Mary Ann Ganser, plus Mary
Weiss and Elizabeth "Betty" Weiss. The girls often appeared as a trio,
as Betty Weiss rarely appeared on stage until late 1965, preferring to avoid touring.
began playing school shows, talent shows, and teen hops, coming to the attention
of Artie Ripp, who arranged the group's first record deal with Kama Sutra. Their
first recording in December 1963 was "Simon Says", on which Betty sang
lead. They had their first hit in 1964 with "Leader of the Pack" reaching
No.1 in US and No.11 in the UK. They continued to chart with fairly successful
U.S. hit records, specializing in adolescent themes such as alienation, loneliness,
abandonment and death. Singles included "Give Him a Great Big Kiss",
"Out in the Streets", "Give Us Your Blessings", the top ten
hit "I Can Never Go Home Anymore", "Long Live Our Love", "He
Cried" and the spoken-word "Past, Present and Future", featuring
music from Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata". Noteworthy B-sides included
"Heaven Only Knows", "The Train from Kansas City", "Dressed
in Black", and "Paradise"
(sadly died of breast cancer) b. February 4th 1947.
2000: Jerome Smith (47)
American rhythm guitarist
and an original member of the group KC and the Sunshine Band. His high-pitched,
restless guitar solo on "Get Down Tonight", KC and the Sunshine Band's
first US No.1 single, resembled the sound of a synthesizer. With the group he
recorded five No. 1 songs, including "That's the Way (I Like It)", "(Shake,
Shake, Shake) Shake Your Booty" and "I'm Your Boogie Man". He
was also sought after as a session guitarist, playing on 10 albums by the disco
burlesque artist Blowfly and touring in America with the Australian group the
Divinyls. In the 1990s he contributed to the soundtrack of the television show
Melrose Place. (tragically
he was crushed by a bulldozer he was operating) b.
June 18th 1953.
Samuel Aaron Bell (81)
pianist, tuba player and bassist, one of the
best bassists ever in the Duke Ellington band; his powerful lines and graceful,
yet sturdy support provided a rich presence in the rhythm section. He played with
the Duke between '60-62 and again in '67, on a tribute to Billy Strayhorn. Over
the years he recorded with Billie Holiday, Cab Calloway, Carmen McRae, Dick Haymes,
Johnny Hodges, Stan Kenton, Jimmy Rushing and Lester Young, among many others.
He also began teaching at Essex College, Newark in 1970, remaining there until
1990. Later in the 1970s he toured with Norris Turney, Cat
Anderson and Harold
Ashby; in the 1980s he returned to piano playing, and retired from active performance
in 1989 (?)
b. April 24th 1922.
2004: George "The Fox" Williams (69)
American lead singer of the Philadelphia R&B
vocal group The Tymes. He joined the group in 1960 after which they changed their
name from the Latineers to The Tymes. They
had hits in the UK in the 60s and 70s with songs such as "So Much in Love",
a U.S. chart topper and million-seller in 1963, "You Little Trust Maker"
and "Ms Grace". The last of these became the group's biggest UK hit,
reaching No.1 in the UK in 1975. "So Much in Love" was elected to the
Songs of the Century in 2001 and in 2005 The Tymes were inducted into the Vocal
Group Hall of Fame (sadly
George died of cancer) b. December
Sal Mosca (80)
American jazz pianist and educator, born in Mount Vernon, NY; he worked with Lee
Konitz in 1949, also he worked with Warne Marsh. He spent much of his career teaching
and was fairly inactive since 1992, but a new CD was released in 2004 (sadly
died from effects of emphysema) b. April 27th 1927.
Lebanese singer and actress; she rose to fame in the Arab
world after having won the top prize in the popular Studio El Fan television show
in 1996. She was hailed for her beauty and also for a voice that was equally suited
to pop tunes and classical Arabic melodies. Her last album
'Saken Alby' was produced in 2002 and
her last song, Lovers, recorded in 2006, was dedicated to the memory of slain
Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri (Susan
was found murdered in an apartment in Dubai Marina; Egyptian businessman and lawmaker
Hisham Talaat Moustafa was arrested in Cairo and charged with paying a hitman
to have Tamim killed. On May 21, 2009, he and Muhsen el-Sukkari were found guilty
of her murder and have been sentenced to death by hanging in Cairo)
b. September 23rd
2009: Kaori Kawamura (38) Japanese
rock and pop singer. She released her first single, "ZOO", at the age
In 1990 she had a hit with "Kamisama ga Oritekuru Yoru" and the following
year with the often-covered "Tsubasa wo Kudasai." That year she made
the first of several movie appearances in "Tokyo Kyujitsu". Kaori got
involved in the club scene in the late 90s. In 2004, she was diagnosed with breast
cancer and she became a spokeswoman for cancer activism
(sadly died of cancer)
b. January 23rd 1971.
2010: Chris Dagley (38)
British drummer, clinician, arranger, and session player;
a drum prodigy since the age of 12, originally from Birmingham, Chris went on
to become a top session musician and one of the busiest
drummers in London. He has performed and/or worked
Benny Golson, Jim Mullen, Liza Minnelli, Bette Midler, Lionel Ritchie, Gary Barlow,
Westlife, Lalo Schifrin, Ella Fitzgerald, Eric >>>READ
Chris was killed on his way home from a gig at the Ronnie
Scott Club in the small hours, when
his motorcycle crashed on the A40 dual carriageway near White City)
2010: Katarzyna Sobczyk (65) Polish
singer, born in Tyczyn. From 1964-72 she was a member of the band Czerwono-Czarni.
Between 1964 - 1967
and the band won four awards at the
National Festival of Polish Song in Opole, for the songs.. O mnie sie nie martw;
Nie wiem czy warto;
Nie badz taki szybki Bill; and Trzynastego. Later
she and her husband Henryk Fabian were vocalists in the band Wiatraki
(sadly died after a battle with breast cancer)
b. February 12th 1945
2010: Derf "Fred"
Scratch/Frederick Milner III (??) American bassist,
best known as the original bass guitarist and founder member of the punk rock
band Fear formed in 1977. After
their their notorious Saturday Night Live performance in 1981, they recorded their
debut album The Record, now a classic punk album. Scratch not only played bass
on most of the record, he played saxophone on the song "New York's Alright
If You Like Saxophones". He also co-wrote one song with Ving on the album,
"Fresh Flesh", and wrote and sang lead vocal on "Getting The Brush".
Derf was also seen with the band in the movie The Decline of Western Civilization
and on an episode of Casey Kasem's syndicated America's Top 10 TV show. (?)
2011: Bernd Clüver
(63) German singer well known for his huge hit
"The Boy With The Harmonica".
Over his career he sold over 10 million CDs, had over 5000 performances on European
stages and won numerous awards. In addition to his work as a pop singer, he also
had success as a broadcaster , including the Southwest Radio Baden-Baden. As a
lyricist he wrote the song
Angel In Blue Jeans with German text from Neil Diamond's
in Blue Jeans (Bernd tragically died from a fall
in a domestic accident) b. April 10th 1948.
Rita Reys/Maria Everdina Reijs (88) Dutch jazz
singer born in Rotterdam into an artistic family. Her first pro band Rita Reys
& the Wessel Ilcken Sextet, regularly performed at the Sheherezade jazz club
and toured many parts of Europe. They performed with Ted Powder in Belgium and
Luxemburg in 1945 and 1946 and toured Spain and North Africa with the Piet van
Dijk orchestra between 1947 and 1950. At the 1960 French jazz festival of Juan-les-Pins,
Rita received the title, "Europe's first lady of jazz".
Columbia record producer George Avakian, heard her rendition of "My Funny
Valentine" and she accepted his invitation to go to the states and in 1956
she went to New York City where she recorded with the greats including Art Blakey,
Horace Silver, Hank Mobley, Donald Byrd, Oscar Pettiford, Zoot Sims and Clark
Terry. More recently, in 2009, Rita performed at a sold out Amsterdam Concertgebouw,
together with Trijntje Oosterhuis and accompanied by the Jazz Orchestra of the
Concertgebouw (?) b. December
2014: Johnny Rebb/Donald James
Delbridge (79) Australian rock and roll
singer born in Newcastle, NSW, who became a successful country & western singer
in the 50s. In the 60s he was dubbed the "Gentleman of Rock" by disc
jockeys of the time and replaced Johnny O'Keefe as the MC of Saturday
Rock while O'Keefe was in the USA. Later in the 1960s, Johnny became the lead
singer s in the band The Atlantics, well known for their classic hit, "Bombora",
their later recordings such as "Come On" are examples of 1960s garage
rock. They were the first Australian rock band to write their own hits. Over the
years The Atlantics have re-emerged sporadically and in 2011 the band released
an album of rare and unreleased tracks
(?) b. March
John Barbirolli (80) English conductor born in
London; he is remembered above all as conductor of the Hallé Orchestra
in Manchester, which he helped save from dissolution in 1943 and conducted for
the rest of his life. Earlier in his career he was Arturo Toscanini's successor
as music director of the New York Philharmonic, serving there from 1936 to 1943.
He was also chief conductor of the Houston Symphony from 1961 to 1967, and was
a guest conductor of many other orchestras including the BBC Symphony Orchestra,
London Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia, the Berlin Philharmonic and the Vienna
Philharmonic, making recordings with all these orchestras. Musical wards included
the Freedom of the Worshipful Company of Musicians, 1966; Honorary Academician
of the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, 1960; Gold Medal of the Royal Philharmonic
Society, 1950; Bruckner Medal, Bruckner Society of America, 1959; and the Mahler
Medal, Mahler-Bruckner Society of America, 1965 and 1949 saw him knighted
b. December 2nd 1899.
Cass/Cass Elliot/Ellen Naomi Cohen (33)
American singer with the folk-rock group "Mamas and the Papas," during
the 1960s. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, she grew up in the Washington DC area.
During her senior year in high school she had the desire to become an actress,
and got a part in the play "The Music Man", then in early '63 she formed
a folk singing group called "The Triumvirate", later changed to "The
Big 3". They cut 2 albums, and appearanced on "The Tonight Show,"
"Hootenanny," and the "Danny Kaye Show".
In 1964, the name changed to "Cass Elliott and the Big Three" but soon
became "The Mugwumps". Later that year she joined John and Michelle
Phillips and Denny Doherty in the group "The New Journeymen", which
became "The Mamas and The Papas" in 1965. Out of their five No.1 hits,
"Dream a Little Dream of Me" became Cass's theme song when she turned
solo in '68 to '74. During these times she was regularly on TV talk shows and
variety shows, including The Julie Andrews Hour, The Mike Douglas Show, The Andy
Williams Show, Hollywood Squares, and The Carol Burnett Show. She guest-hosted
for Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show and appeared on that show 13 other times.
At the height of her solo career in 1974, Cass performed two weeks of sold-out
concerts at the London Palladium. After
the final concert on July 28th, she
telephoned Michelle Phillips excited and over-joyed with the standing ovations
each night, but, so sadly she died later that night. Cass was inducted into the
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in
did not choke to death on her ham sandwich as rumour once had it, an autopsy concluded
had died of a heart attack.
Moon, of The
Who, died in the same room four years later. This
tragic London apartment, flat, No.12 at 9 Curzon Place, Mayfair, was owned by
singer-songwriter, the late Harry Nilsson)
b. September 19th 1941.
1978: Glen Lamont Goins (24)
American singer, guitarist,
born and raised in Plainfield, New Jersey a master vocalist with a powerful and
haunting gospel voice, he first recorded with the group "The Bags",
releasing a single in 1972 "It's Heavy" / "Don't Mess With My Baby".
But Glen is better known as singer and guitarist for Parliament Funkadelic in
the mid-1970s. He was particularly prominent on the Parliament albums Mothership
Connection in 1975, The Clones of Dr. Funkenstein in 1976, and 1977's Funkentelechy
vs. the Placebo Syndrome. Glen is a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,
inducted in 1997 with fifteen other members of Parliament-Funkadelic. In 1978
he formed his own funk band Quazar featuring his younger brother Kevin Goins and
drummer Jerome "Bigfoot" Brailey. They recorded a self-titled album
which Glen also produced and arranged, but sadly Glen died before the album's
release (sadly died fighting Hodgkin's lymphoma)
b. January 2nd 1954.
Peter Alexander Edwin Meaden (36)
English publicist for various musicians and the first manager
for the Who. He was a prominent figure in the English Mod subculture of the early
1960s. He is sometimes referred to as the "Mod Father" or "Mod
God"; either way his influence has left a mark on the Mod subculture to this
day. As a teenager, he worked in a restaurant before embracing the mod subculture
and establishing himself as a face, a trend-setter within the mod scene. As manager
of The Who, he reinvented the band to attract a mod following, changing their
name to The High Numbers and wrote thier first and only single, "I'm the
Face"; the B-side of which was "Zoot Suit". In January 1968, he
attempted to escort the American rockers Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band
to London for their first UK performances. But he had not obtained the necessary
work permits in advance, the musicians were detained at customs and denied entry
to the country.After losing control of the Who, he went on to manage Jimmy James
& The Vagabonds, and worked as a publicist for the Crystals, Chuck Berry and
the Rolling Stones. (sadly after years of drug abuse
and a nervous breakdown, Peter died at his parents' home in London, of a barbiturate
overdose) b. November 11th 1941.
Fred Waring (84) American
singer, musician, bandleader and radio-television personality, often referred
to as "America's Singing Master" and "The Man Who Taught America
How to Sing". He was also a promoter, financial backer and namesake of the
Waring Blendor, the first modern electric blender on the market. He was born in
Tyrone, Pennsylvania and while in college
, his brother Tom, and friend Poley McClintock founded the Waring-McClintock Snap
Orchestra, which evolved into Fred Waring's Banjo Orchestra. With their success,
he left college to tour with his band. They eventually became known as Fred Waring
and his Pennsylvanians
and the 1940s and early 1950s, Fred produced a string
of hits, selling millions of records. A few of his many choral hits include "Sleep,"
"Battle Hymn of the Republic," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes,"
"Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor",
"Button Up Your Overcoat", "White Christmas" and "Dancing
in the Dark". He expanded into television with The Fred Waring Show, which
ran on CBS Television from 20 June 1948 to 30 May 1954. As well as his musical
carreer from 1943 to 1974, Fred owned the Shawnee Inn and Country Club, a golf
resort located at Shawnee, Delaware. Throughout his career, he received many awards,
but in 1983, at 83-years old, now considered king of popular choral music he was
awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, the nations highest honor for a civilian,
by President Ronald Reagan (he died suddenly, sadly
1986: Gordon Mills (51)
London-based music industry manager and songwriter who was born in Madras, India
and grew up in Trealaw in the Rhondda Valley, South Wales. At age 15, he joined
a group playing in pubs and clubs in the South Wales Valleys. At age 17, he was
called up for National Service and served in Germany and Malaya. After which he
met musicians Don Paul and Ronnie Wells with whom he formed a trio known as The
Viscounts. One song "Who Put the Bomp (In The Bomp, Bomp, Bomp)" became
a minor hit in the UK Singles Chart. Their cover of "Short'nin' Bread"
also had some success. He he went on to manage the careers of eminent vocalists
Engelbert Humperdinck and Tom Jones and co-wrote with Les Reed, Jones's signature
song It's Not Unusual (died after a fight with stomach cancer)
b. May 15th
1988: Pete Drake/Roddis Franklin Drake (56) American
pedal steel guitarist and major Nashville, Tennessee-based record producer. He
was one of the most sought-after backup musicians of the 1960s, he played on such
hits as Lynn Anderson's "Rose Garden", Charlie Rich's "Behind Closed
Doors"', and Bob Dylan's "Lay Lady Lay"'; he played on Bob Dylan's
three Nashville-recorded albums, including Nashville Skyline, and on Joan Baez's
David's Album. He also worked with George Harrison on All Things Must Pass, and
with Ringo Starr on Beaucoups of Blues in 1970. Pete produced albums for many
other musicians, and founded Stop Records and First Generation Records.
In 1970 he was inducted into the Country
Music Hall of Fame's Walkway of Stars and the Steel Guitar Hall of Fame in 1987
(sadly lost his 3 year battle with emphysema) b.
William Mathias (57)
Welsh composer, born in Whitland,
Carmarthenshire. A child prodigy, he started playing the piano at the age of three
and composing at the age of five. He studied at the Royal Academy of Music. He
founded the North Wales International Music Festival in St Asaph in 1972 and directed
it until his death. In 1968, William received the Bax Society Prize of the Harriet
Cohen International Music Award and he was professor of music and head of department
at the University of Wales, Bangor, from 1970 until 1988. He wrote dozens of choral,
works, and an opera. His anthem "Let
the people praise Thee, O God" written for the 1981 royal wedding of the
Prince and Princess of Wales, had a television audience of an estimated 1 billion
people worldwide (?) b.
November 1st 1934.
Les Elgart (77) American
swing jazz bandleader and trumpet player, born in New
Haven, CT; he began
playing trumpet as a teenager, and in the 1940s he played in bands led by Raymond
Scott, Charlie Spivak, and Harry James. In 1945 he and his brother Larry, put
together a band, the Les & Larry Elgart Ensemble, hiring Bill Finegan, Nelson
Riddle and Ralph Flanagan, to do arrangements; but they split in 1946. They reunited
in '52 and released a substantial number of albums on Columbia Records. Among
their better-known tunes is "Bandstand Boogie", which was used by Dick
Clark as the theme song for American Bandstand. Later in the 1950s Les moved away
from performing to handling the band's business end, and had essentially stopped
performing by the end of the decade. In 1963, the pair reunited again, hiring
arrangers like Charles Albertine and Bobby Scott for material, Les continued to
work until his death
(died from heart failure in Dallas, Texas) b.
August 3rd 1917.
Jason Thirsk (28) American
he started playing in school bands
at Mira Costa High before
founding the punk rock band Pennywise along with Jim Lindberg, guitarist Fletcher
Dragge and drummer Byron McMackin. They released two EPs A Word from the Wise
and Wildcard, both 1989. Signing to Epitaph Records in 1990 they released their
first album Pennywise in 1991, which quickly spread throughout the punk community,
earning the band nation-wide recognition. They went on to record 2 more albums,
but in 1996, when Pennywise be gan recording their fourth album, Jason left the
band in an attempt to conquer alcoholism, sadly he didn't finish the album (died
from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest)
b. December 25th 1967.
1997: Chuck Wayne (74)
American jazz guitarist born in New York City, as a youngster, as well as learning
guitar he also became an expert on the banjo, mandolin, and balalaika. He was
one of the earliest guitarists to learn the bebop style. In the early 40s he began
playing jazz on 52nd Street and in the Village and is noted for his work with
Woody Herman's First Herd and for being the first guitarist in the George Shearing
quintet. He also was Tony Bennett's accompanist
and music director from
1954-1957. Over his long career he worked with many major artists and musicians
Sarah Vaughan, Frank Sinatra, and Barbra Streisand; bandleaders
Dizzy Gillespie, Lester Young, Coleman
Slam Stewart, Claude
Thornhill, Wingy Manone and Tadd Dameron; plus an endless list of soloists including
Zoot Sims, Brew Moore, Jo Jones, Joe Marsala, Billy Taylor, George Duvivier and
Red Norvo. In his later career, he was also noted for duo performances in the
New York City area with Warren Chiasson, Joe Puma, and Tal Farlow
(?) b. February 27th 1923.
1999: Ina Anita Carter
(66) American singer born in Maces Spring,
Virginia; she experimented with several types of music and played upright bass
with her sisters Helen Carter and June Carter Cash as The Carter Sisters. The
trio joined the Grand Ole Opry radio show in 1950 when Anita was 17 years old,
opened shows for Elvis Presley, and joined The Johnny Cash Show in 1971. As a
solo artist, and with her family, Anita recorded for a number of labels including
RCA Victor, Cadence, Columbia, Audiograph, United Artists, Liberty and Capitol.
She scored two Top 10 hits in 1951 with "Down The Trail of Achin' Hearts"
with Hank Snow and "Blue Bird Island". She reached the Top 10 again
in 1968 with "I Got You" with Waylon Jennings. Other solo releases charted
as well. She recorded two folk albums in the 1960s. In 1962, she recorded a song
co-written by her sister June and Merle Kilgore called "Love's Ring Of Fire"
(Anita had suffered from rheumatoid arthritis for many years, the drugs used to
treat it severely damaged her pancreas, kidneys, and liver) b.
March 31th 1933.
James "Huby" Hubert Heard (53) American
keyboardist, organist born in Hamilton, he was also a singer,
songwriter, composer and busy session
player. When he was 13, he moved to Cincinnati to become a musician for the Bibleway
Church of God In Christ. He left Cincinnati to join Billy Preston in Los Angeles,
where he lived for the next 30 years. He
played keyboard for Billy Preston's group, The God Squad, for about 13 years and
made appearances on such television programs as Soul Train and American Bandstand.
The group won four Grammys for the songs, "Will It Go Round in Circles",
"Nothing from Nothing", "Outta Space" and "Space Race".
In the early 70s, he toured in England playing keyboard for The Rolling Stones.
In 1975, he played on the Stone Alone solo album by Rolling Stone member Bill
Wyman. He was also a member of Leon Russell's band, which later became the Gap
Band, whose hits included, "Party Train", "Early in the Morning"
and "Drop the Bomb". Other artists he played keyboard for included Angela
and Renee, Teddy Pendergrass, Stephanie Mills, Ray Charles, and Brothers Johnson.
In 1999, Huby joined Preston and other former band members to tape a television
show, Motown Live (sadly
Huby died of a heart ailment) b.
Al McKibbon (86)
jazz double bassist, known for his work in bop, hard bop, and Latin jazz. In
1947, after working with Lucky Millinder, Tab Smith, J. C. Heard, and Coleman
Hawkins, he replaced Ray Brown in Dizzy Gillespie's band, in which he played until
1950. In the '50s he recorded with the Miles Davis nonet, Earl Hines, Count Basie,
Johnny Hodges, Thelonious Monk, George Shearing, Cal Tjader, Herbie Nichols and
Hawkins. He was credited with interesting Tjader in Latin music while in Tjader's
group. Al continued to perform until 2004. In '99, aged 80, he recorded his first
album in his name, Tumbao Para Los Congueros Di Mi Vida, which was nominated for
a Grammy for Best Latin Jazz Performance. McKibbon's second album, Black Orchid,
was released in 2004. He also wrote the Afterword to Raul Fernandez' book, Latin
Jazz, part of the Smithsonian Institution's series of exhibitions on jazz (?)
b. January 1st 1919.
2005: Hildegarde Loretta Sell (99) American
cabaret singer born in Adell, Wisconsin, known for the song "Darling, Je
Vous Aime Beaucoup". Hildegarde
trained at Marquette University's College of Music in the 1920s and worked in
vaudeville and traveling shows throughout her career, appearing across the United
States and Europe. Known for 70 years as "The Incomparable Hildegarde"
a title bestowed on her by columnist Walter Winchell, in
the 1930s and '40s, she was booked in cabarets and supper clubs at least 45 weeks
a year. She appeared on the cover of Life magazine in 1939, and her recordings
sold in the hundreds of thousands. Revlon even introduced a Hildegarde shade of
lipstick and nail polish and her admirers ranged from soldiers during World War
II to King Gustaf of Sweden and the Duke of Windsor. From
the 1950s through the 1970s, in addition to her cabaret performances and record
albums, she appeared in a number of television specials and toured with the national
company of the Stephen Sondheim musical Follies. Her
autobiography, Over 50 .... So What!, was published by Doubleday in 1961.
(natural causes) b. February 1st 1906.
2007: Art Davis
(73) American jazz double-bassist, known for
his work with Dizzy
Gillespie, John Coltrane, Thelonious
Monk, and Max Roach. Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania he began on the piano at
five, switching to tuba, then finally to bass while at high school. He studied
at Juilliard and Manhattan School of Music but graduated from Hunter College.
He went on to be a top
New York session musician, he recorded with many pop artists and has also worked
in classical symphony orchestras including the Los Angeles Philharmonic; he also
launched a legal case which led to the current system of blind auditions for orchestras.
Art Davis was also a professor at Orange Coast College. While performing with
bassist Reggie Workman in Coltrane's group, Art pioneered the use of two basses
in a jazz combo setting. Art earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from New York
University in 1982. He moved to southern California in 1986 where he balanced
his teaching and practicing of psychology with jazz performances. (heart
attack) b. December 5th 1934.
Ishmeet Singh Sodhi (18) Indian
singer; born in Ludhiana, Punjab, India, he was the winner of Amul STAR Voice
of India 2007. He entered the Star Voice of India contest at the age of 17, making
him one of the youngest competitors on the show. After winning the contest he
debuted with a religious Gurbani album called Satgur Tumre Kaaj Savaare. Ishmeet
had been working with Salim-Suleiman to produce the song 'Shukriya' and had promoted
this single with live performances. He
toured Hong Kong and Malaysia and sung in concerts with members of the Voice of
India competition. He put time aside to sing kirtan, or hymns, in gurdwaras. His
last performance in a gurdwara was alongside the well-known singer amongst the
sikhs, Veer Manpreet Singh (died under mysterious circumstances
in a swimming pool at the Chaaya Island Dhonveli beach resort in Maldives where
he had gone to perform in an event) b. September 2nd 1989.
Renato Pagliari (69) Italian-born,
auditioned for ITV's talent show, New Faces in 1975, catching the attention of
songwriter, Johnny Edward, who had written "Save Your Love". Renato
was teamed up with British singer Hilary Lester and the duo was named Renée
and Renato. They recorded the song, "Save Your Love"
which became the 1982 Christmas No.1. The follow-up single "Just One More
Kiss" reached No.48. Their third single, "Jesus Loves Us All",
failed to reach the UK Singles Chart. He sang regularly at his son's restaurant,
his later credits included a guest spot on the TV comedy show Little and Large,
he also issued several albums
(sadly died due to complications following surgery on a
brain tumor) b.
2011: Nella Martinetti (65)
Swiss singer-songwriter; born in Brissago, she became the first winner
of the Grand Prix der Volksmusik in
1986 with the
song Bella Musica, which she had composed herself. In Eurovision, Nella wrote
4 songs for Switzerland: Io senza you in 1981,
Io così non ci sto, in 1983 placed 15th; Pas pour moi in 1986, placed 2nd
and Ne partez pas sans moi which came 1st in 1988, the song was sung by the then
unknown Canadian singer Celine Dion (sadly Nella died of
pancreatic cancer) b. January 21st
2011: Gene McDaniels (76) American singer-songwriter
born in Kansas City, Missouri, but grew up in Omaha, Nebraska. He went on to have
six Top 40 hits in the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The two that went into the Top
5 were 1961's "Tower of Strength" reaching No.5 and "A Hundred
Pounds of Clay," which reached No.3 and sold over one million records, earning
gold disc status. "Tower of Strength" reached No.49 in the UK Singles
Chart, losing out to Frankie Vaughan's chart-topping version. In the 1980s, he
recorded an album with percussionist Terry Silverlight, which has not yet been
released. In 2005, he released Screams & Whispers on his own record label.
In 2009, Gene release a new album, Evolution's Child, which featured his lyrics,
and a number of songs composed or arranged with pianist Ted Brancato. Some of
the songs featured jazz musician Ron Carter on concert bass. Gene also also appeared
in films including the 1962 It's Trad, Dad!, the 1963's The Young Swingers and
breifly in Uptown Saturday Night in 1974. Living his later life as a near-hermit
in Maine, Gene's final work was a series of YouTube videos featuring his music
and comments on his life (?) b. February 12th 1935.
2013: Ole Henrik Moe (93)
Norwegian pianist and art historian, born in Lillehammer.
During WW II he was a member of the intelligence organization XU, but was arrested
in October 1942 and was incarcerated in the Sachsenhausen CC from 1943-1945.
was manager of the Henie-Onstad Art Centre from 1966 to 1989. Among his works
are Slekten Knagenhjelm og Kaupanger from 1960, and biographies of Lars Hertervig
and Inger Sitter. He was decorated Knight, 1st Class of the Order of St.Olav in
1980, and Officer of the French Légion d'honneur, then awarded the Arts
Council Norway Honorary Award in 1995
(?) b. January 11th 1920.
Mexican singer and harpist,
born in Medellin; she learned
to play the harp at the age of 10 and had lessons from blind harpist, Rodrigo
Rodriguez. Throughout her career she devoted herself to playing in festivals and
local venues in her home state of Veracruzshe, but also appeared in major venues
in America and Europe such as the Royal Festival Hall and the Barbican in London,
UK, the Harbour Centre in Toronto, Canada, the Theatre de la Ville de Paris in
France and in The Mexico-Festival in Berlin. She did not record till later in
her life, recording 3 albums "Sones jarochos with Silva Trio" in 1995,
followed by albums "En vivo desde el Theatre de la Ville" and "Live
from the Theatre de la Ville" (?) b. December 18th
Sadanam Divakara Marar (77) Indian percussionist.
2014: Giorgio Gaslini (84)
Italian pianist and composer, complications from a fall.
Idris Muhammad (74) American jazz drummer
Buddy Emmons (78) American musician
born in Mishawaka, Indiana; he played several instruments, most notably pedal
steel guitar. At aged 18 he joined Little Jimmy Dickens' band, followed by Ernest
Tubb & The Texas Troubadours, Ray Price & The Cherokee Cowboys, before
joining The Roger Miller Band in 1967. His musical versatility spanned genres
such as country, swing, jazz, folk, and country-rock, and he has also performed
or recorded, as well as the avove, with a wide variety of
vocalists and musicians including Linda Ronstadt, The Everly Brothers, Redneck
Jazz Explosion, John
Hartford, Ray Price, Judy Collins, Lenny Breau and others. (?)
b. January 27th 1937.
José Menese (74) Spanish flamenco singer born
in the small, southwestern town of La Puebla de Cazalla; many aficionados consider
him to be the finest voice in flamenco singing despite not to have been born within
a Gypsy family. His awards include the
award of the Chair of Flamencology of Jerez in 1965 and 1974, the
plate of silver of Mairena del Alcor in 1967,
the prize waves of Cadena Ser, the Popular prize of the everyday people (1968),
arrow of gold of Seville in 1969), the Taranto of
gold in 1971), the Seville and Seville of the year in 1973) famous Prize, the
prize Compas del Cante in 1992) and the Calle de Alcalá and "Patriarch
of singing" in 1997) and also he leaves behind a discography of around 30
died just weeks before two flamenco festivals were
due to recognize his lifes work and La
Puebla de Cazalla decreed three days of official mourning for the death of the
singer. (?) b. December
Lucille Dumont/Lucelle Dumont/Micheline Lalonde (97) Canadian
singer and radio-television host. Born in Montreal, she made her professional
debut, performing on the Sweet Caporal radio show focused on French music. She
is credited by the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame with having "served
and personified Quebec popular music" and popularized the music of Quebec
songwriters by singing their songs. She is also credited with being "at the
birth of Quebec television," participating in Radio Canada's first television
shows. Lucille was inducted into the
Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2006 and was an Officer of the Order
of Canada and an Officer of the National Order of Quebec.
b. January 20th 1919.
Daasebre Gyamenah (47)
Ghanaian singer who became very popular for his debut
hit Kokooko in 1999 which featured Lord Kenya. This song was the first
major fusion of hiplife and highlife in Ghana and meant a successful career for
both musicians. He was attributed to many titles including contemporary highlife
music. He won two awards in 2000 and another four awards during 2002 editions
of the Ghana Music Awards. (Daasebre
had been battling an undisclosed illness) b. 1969.
Peter Sadlo (54)
German percussionist, he grew in Zirndorf; in 1967 he
started with classical percussion training. At the age of 12 he was received as
a guest student at the former Meistersinger Conservatory in Nuremberg. Spotted
when he was 20 by Sergiu Celibidache, and went on to be principal timpanist of
the Munich Philharmonic in 1982 and professor of percussion at the citys
music academy. He added the Salzburg Mozarteum in 1990 and from there developed
a major solo career. He could play everything, from Bach to blues and among his
many awards, in 2015 he was awarded the Frankfurt Music Prize. (tragically
from serious complications after kidney surgery)
b. June 27th 1962.
Fred Tomlinson (88)
English singer born in Rawtenstall, Lancashire. Early
in his career he auditioned for the George Mitchell Singers, who provided backing
for radio and television programmes, and so his broadcasting career began. In
1960 he took over as musical director of
the Littlewoods Pools Company broadcasting orchestra, before founding the Fred
Tomlinson Singers in the late 1960s. For some 20 years from the late 1960s his
singing, playing, arranging, compositional and even whistling skills were frequently
called upon for musical items in television programmes. Among other things he
co-wrote the Python teams Lumberjack Song and the Vikings singing Spam!
Wonderful Spam! and had a starring role as a soloist on The Two Ronnies in the
St Botolph Country Dance Teams rendition of Bold Sir John. The group also
performed in episodes of Coronation Street, Dads Army, The Goodies, Only
Fools and Horses and other shows. As
a composer, he wrote an orchestral and choral piece called The Chaucer Suite,
using words from Chaucers Canterbury Tales. Fred was an enthusiastic and
committed chairman of the Peter Warlock Society from 1970 to 1995 and remained
chairman emeritus until his death. (?)
b. December 18th 1927.
Ken Barrie/Les Carl/Leslie Hulme (83) British
voice actor and singer, born in Stoke on Trent. Under the stage name Les Carle,
he recorded for Embassy Records, an offshoot of Woolworths that released inexpensive
cover versions of pop hits, between 1962 and 1965, after which he changed his
stage name and took his new name of Ken Barrie from the names of his wife's brothers.
His own singing and narrating voice and whistling has been heard in many movies
and television commercials, and included providing the voices of the Smash Martians.
Barrie provided singing voices in various movies for many actors including Larry
Hagman, George C. Scott, and Horst Buchholz. His own singing and narrating voice
and whistling has been heard in many movies and television commercials, and included
providing the voices of the Smash Martians. He provided singing voices in various
movies for many actors including Larry Hagman, George C. Scott, and Horst Buchholz.
He became the voice of Postman Pat in 1981, narrating the first series and also
providing the voices of the Postman Pat and many of the other characters, as well
as recording of the theme song, which reached No. 44 on the UK singles chart.
He also sang the soundtrack for Charlie Chalk and recorded the soundtracks
for Sharks' Treasure and Emily. (sadly
died from liver cancer) b. January 9th 1933
Jimmie Blanton (23) American
jazz double bassist,
born in Chattanooga. He joined Duke Ellington's band in 1939, and though
he stayed with Ellington for only two years, he made an immeasurable contribution
in changing the way the double bass was used in jazz. Previously the double bass
was rarely used to play anything but quarter notes in ensemble or solos but by
soloing on the bass more in a 'horn like' fashion, Jimmie began sliding into eighth-
and sixteenth-note runs, introducing melodic and harmonic ideas that were totally
new to jazz bass playing. His virtuosity put him in a different class from his
predecessors, making him the first true master of the jazz bass and demonstrating
the instrument's unsuspected potential as a solo instrument. Such was his importance
to Ellington's band at the time, together with the tenor saxophonist Ben Webster,
that it became known as the BlantonWebster band. Jimmie also recorded a
series of bass and piano duets with Ellington. In 1941, he was diagnosed with
tuberculosis, cutting short his tenure with Ellington. His last recording session
was cut on September 26th 1941 in Hollywood, after which he had to retire to a
sadly Jimmie died of tuberculosis) b.
October 5th 1918
1950: Guilhermina Suggia
(62) Portuguese cellist born in Porto; at the age of
12 she was appointed principal cellist of the local orchestra, the Orpheon Portuense.
In 1904, under the patronage of Queen Maria Amélia of Portugal, she went
to study at the Leipzig Conservatoire, Germany under Julius Klengel and built
an international reputation. She spent many years living in England, where she
was particularly celebrated. She retired in 1939, but emerged from retirement
to give concerts in Britain. She gave her last concerts at the Edinburgh Festival
in 1949 and in Bournemouth later the same year. Guilhermina
bequeathed her Stradivarius cello to the Royal Academy of Music in
London, to be sold to fund a scholarship for young cellists
(?) b. June 27th
1970: György Széll or Georg Szell (73) Hungarian-born American
conductor and composer. He is remembered today for his long and successful tenure
as music director of the Cleveland Orchestra, and for the recordings of the standard
classical repertoire he made in Cleveland and with other orchestras (?)
b. June 7th 1897.
Daisy Kennedy (88)
born in Burra-Burra near Adelaide. She was for three years Elder scholar at Adelaide
Conservatory and a private pupil of Otakar evcík in Vienna for a
year, and then studied for two years in the Meister-Schule there. She appeared
in London in 1911 and toured widely in Europe and in the United States, Australia
and New Zealand. (?)
b. January 16th 1893.
Dietz (86) American
pop and Broadway lyricist; born in N.Y.C. in 1896, he attended Columbia University
before working as a newspaper columnist and ad writer, and serving in WW1. He
next worked as publicist/director of advertising for Samuel Goldwyn Productions
and later MGM and is credited with creating its
lion mascot, Leo
the Lion, and choosing their slogan Ars Gratia Artis. He began a long association
with composer Arthur Schwartz when they teamed up for the Broadway revue "The
Little Show" in 1929 and continued to work together over the next 30 plus
Broadway musicals include 'Three's a Crowd' in 1930, 'The Band Wagon' in 1931,
'Flying Colors' in 1932, 'Revenge With Music' in 1934, 'At Home Abroad' in 1935
'Between the Devil' in 1938, and 'Inside U.S.A' in 1948 among others.
by Schwartz and Dietz to mention a few include "I Guess I'll Have to Change
My Plan" and "Moanin' Low", "Something to Remember You By",
"Dancin' in the Dark", "Louisiana Hayride" and "A Shine
on Your Shoes", "You and the Night and the Music", "By Myself"
and "I See Your Face Before Me", and "That's Entertainment".
Howard also wrote English lyrics for the operas La Boheme and Der Fledermaus,
and collaborated on pop songs with such composers as Jerome Kern, Vernon Duke,
Jimmy McHugh, and Ralph Rainger. Dietz reunited with Schwartz in the 1960s for
the musicals 'The Gay Life' in 1961 and Jennie in 1963. Howard is a member of
the Songwriter's Hall of Fame (Parkinson's disease)
b. September 8th 1896.
Peter Knight (68) English
musical arranger, conductor and composer born in Exmouth, Devon; he worked with
Independent Television light entertainment stars from 'Spot The Tune' in 1956
with Jackie Rae and Marion Ryan to the comedy series 'Home to Roost' in 1985.
He also composed the scores to the feature films Curse of the Crimson Altar (1968,
Boris Karloff) and Sunstruck (1972, Harry Secombe). A few other high lights of
his busy career:- he was conductor for many songs for Scott Walker's 1960's; conductor
for The Last Goon Show of All in 1972; orchestra director for many episodes of
The Morecambe and Wise show between 196977;
collaborated with The Carpenters on their two Christmas Special Television Shows
in 1977 and 1978; he was orchestrator of the music for the Roman Polanski film
Tess in 1979; conductor and orchestrator for the Jean-Jacques Annaud film Quest
for Fire in 1981, and the film Ghost Story in 1981; orchestrator of the music
for the film The Dark Crystal in 1982, to mention a few.
b. June 23rd 1917.
1993: The Bass Thing/Rob Jones (29) English
bassist born in Kingswinford; Bob together with friends Miles Hunt, Malcolm Treece,
and Martin Gilks formed the band
Wonder Stuff in March 1986. "A Wonderful
Day" and "Red Berry Joy Town" respectively, became the first single
and the first track on the debut "The Eight Legged Groove Machine" album.
Rob left the band after their follow-up album Hup and headed for America.
New York Rob formed another band, The Bridge & Tunnel Crew, singing vocals
and playing rhythm guitar.
(Sadly found dead in his apartment from a heart attack, it was widely believed
he was using heroin in those days)
Don Myrick (53)
American saxophonist born in Chicago;
he started with a jazz group The Pharaohs and went on to sell millions of records
as a member of Earth, Wind, and Fire in the original horn section, The Phenix
Horns Esq. Don also played on the Phil Collins hit "One More Night".
He performed with many prominent musicians including Grover Washington, Jr. and
Carlos Santana. He appeared on albums by artists including Bobby Blue
Bland, The Dells, Regina Belle, the Mighty Clouds of Joy, and Heaven 17. (Tragically
Don was shot dead in his California home by a Santa Monica cop working a narcotics
investigation. Police surrounded the house and knocked on his door at 6:10 a.m.
to serve a search warrant. He answered with a butane lighter
in his hand and was fatally shot in the chest. His family collected $400,000 in
a wrongful death suit filed against L.A. County)
b. April 6th 1940.
1994: Ryszard Riedel (38) Polish
singer and the original lead singer of blues-rock band Dzem/Jam. He is often regarded
as one of the most popular and well known vocalist of Polish music along with
occasional collaborator Czeslaw Niemen. He is remembered today by a festival in
his honour in Tychy and in
2005 his life story was turned into the Polish movie Destined for Blues/Skazany
na bluesa, he is portrayed by Tomasz Kot
(sadly the cause of death was cardiac insufficiency due to long time opiate drugs
Rambo/Bogotac (28) Serbian-Macedonian
He sang iin his father's kafana before he eventually moved to Belgrade, Serbia,
to launch his professional singing career. He recorded his first album, Bila si
devojcica godina mojih, in 1986 with famous composer Rade Vuckovic and Tomica
Miljic orchestra. Later he recorded several albums with another Serbian composer
Novica Uroevic and in the early nineties achieved great fame and popularity
(tragically he died in a car accident on Ibarska magistrala
near opici, when he crashed his Mercedes into a truck) b.
January 5th 1966.
John Walters (63) British radio producer,
presenter and musician; initially a teacher and a jazz enthusiast, he played trumpet
in The Mighty Joe Young Jazz Men and the 1960s pop group The Alan Price Set before
joining BBC Radio 1 in 1967.
was long-term producer of DJ John Peel's radio show, and responsible for giving
many recording artists their first big break. He turned down the Sex Pistols for
a Peel session, but he reportedly regretted this decision later - but he was responsible
for getting The Smiths their first session after witnessing an early concert.
As a broadcaster he presented the long-running Radio 1 arts magazine Walters'
Weekly and was heard reviewing the music papers on the Janice Long show in the
1980s. In the 1990s he was a reporter on the BBC's current affairs magazine Here
and Now (?) b. July 11th 1939.
label owner, and talent scout throughout the 40s and 50s,
who played an important role in the emergence of rock and roll as the major form
of popular music in the 1950s. He
was a native of Florence, Alabama and a graduate of Coffee High School. He was
exposed to blues and became interested in music by African-American workers on
his father's cotton farm. He is most notably attributed with the discoveries of
Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash, and is associated with several other noteworthy
rhythm and blues and rock and roll stars of the period.
Sam was also founder of Sun Records and was vital to launching the careers of
Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, B.B. King, Howlin'
Wolf, Rufus Thomas and numerous other significant artists.
As well as owning the Sun Studio Café in Memphis, and he
and his family founded Big River Broadcasting Corporation which owns and operates
several radio stations in the Florence, Alabama, area, including WQLT-FM, WSBM,
and WXFL. In
1986 Sam was part of the first group inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
and his pioneering contribution has been recognized by the Rockabilly Hall of
Fame, being the first ever non-performer inducted. In 1987, he was inducted into
the Alabama Music Hall of Fame. He received a Grammy Trustees Award for his lifetime
achievements in 1991. In 1998, he was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame, and
in October 2001 he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame
(died of respiratory failure at St. Francis Hospital in Memphis, only one day
before the original Sun Studio was designated a National Historic Landmark)
b. January 5th 1923.
2005: Eli "Lucky" Thompson (81) American
jazz tenor and soprano saxophonist
born in Columbia, Sth Carolina. After
playing with the swing orchestras of Lucky Millinder, Billy Eckstine, Don Redman,
Lionel Hampton and Count Basie, Eli worked in R&Bs and then established a
career in bop and hard bop, working with Kenny Clarke, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie
and Milt Jackson. He was an inspired soloist with of a very personal style, as
shown on many albums recorded during the 1950s, such as Stan Kenton's Cuban Fire,
and those under his own name. He appeared on Charlie Parker's LA's Dial Records
sessions and on Miles Daviss hard bop Walkin' session among many others.
He lived in Lausanne, Switzerland in the late 60s and recorded albums there including
A Lucky Songbook in Europe. He taught at Dartmouth College in 1973 and 1974, not
long after which, Eli left the music business, because of the racist treatment
he received from record companies and clubs.
passed away after sadly
suffering from Alzheimers disease in his last years)
b. June 16th 1924.
Anthony Galla-Rini (102)
arranger, composer, conductor, author, and teacher, born in Manchester, Connecticut.
He is considered by many to be the first American accordionist to promote the
accordion as a "legitimate" concert instrument. In 1924 he dropped out
of his father's Vaudeville act and joined his sisters, forming a separate act
that lasted until 1932. He was one of the founding members of the American Accordionists'
Association (AAA) in 1938 in New York City, and is in fact their first member.
He also founded the International Accordion Teachers' Guild (ATG), in 1941 in
Chicago serving as President Emeritus of that society throughout his career. In
addition, Galla-Rini also served as a Vice-President of the Confédération
Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA), a member of the United Nations'
International Music Council (IMC).
1941 Antony also composed his Accordion Concerto in G Minor (no. 1), and premiered
it with the Oklahoma City University Symphony Orchestra on November 15, 1941.
Since then there have been more than 39 performances of this concerto in the US
as well as additional performances in England, Finland, Norway and Canada. His
career spanned 98 years as a professional accordionist, and more than 74 years
as an accordion teacher. He has arranged literally hundreds of transcriptions
for accordion ensembles, orchestras and soloists. Anthony has also played a major
part in pioneering the development of the modern accordion, developing the treble
and bass registers, as well as standardizing the stradella bass system on the
b. January 18th 1904.
2010: Stefka Sabotinova (80) Bulgarian
folk singer born in the village of Rozov Kladenec in south-east Bulgaria. For
many years, Stefka was involved in Bulgaria's premier folk ensemble Filip Koutev,
where she gained a cult-like status in Bulgaria, attaining international fame.
She is also known internationally as part of the Bulgarian State television female
vocal choir,"The Mystery of the Bulgarian Voices". Stefka
was signed by Swiss producer Marcel Cellier in 1975 who later produced the compilation
of folk songs entitled "Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares" which promoted
Bulgarian folk music internationally. (?)
b. April 2nd 1930.
2010: Otto Joachim (99) German-born
Canadian violist and composer of electronic music.
Born in Düsseldorf, he trained as a violinist at Düsseldorf and Cologne.
many Jewish composers of his time, in
1934 he left Nazi Germany and played in Singapore and Shanghai during the war
years. He settled permanently in Montreal in 1949. For the next 15 years Otto
worked as a player, teacher, instrument builder and composer. Since the 1960s
he has concentrated on his compositions which are a mix of aleatoric and electroacoustic
1993, he was made a Knight of the National Order of Quebec. (He
died in Montreal)
b. October 13th 1910.
2013: Sharon Mosby (70) American
jazz and blues singer, born in Knoxville, Tennessee, he graduated from Austin
High School in 1961. She started out touring with the Hampton Institute concert
choir throughout the U.S. and abroad. As the lead vocalist for several groups,
she has opened for such notables as Al Green, Fifth Dimension, Jimmy Smith, Ray
Charles, B.B. King, and James Brown. Sharon released her first CD project with
Wendel Werner in 1999 entitled, "I Can Handle That!"
(?) b. May 26th 1943.
Nick Nixon (72) American country singer and songwriter
from St. Louis. He penned the million-selling hit The Teddy Bear Song
that became a No.1 hit for Barbara Fairchild in March of 1973, as well as many
other notable country compositions in the late 60's through the late 70's. Nick
had 12 Top 40 hits over his career, and he released an album simply entitled Nick
Nixon that which included his song Rocking In Rosalees Boat
which reached No.27 on the Billboard charts (sadly
Nick died from pulmonary lung disease)
Murat Gögebakan (45) Turkish
rock-pop singer born in Adana, he moved to Berlin, Germany at the age of one and
returned to Istanbul aged 10. He went on to study at the Turkish State Conservatory
at Hacettepe University and he made his breakthrough as a singer with his 1996
debut album Sen Rahatina Bak (Don't Be Disturbed), which was followed
by Tek Suçum Seni Sevmekmis (My Only Mistake Is Falling In
Love With You). Murat's most famous song, Ay Yüzlüm (My
Moon-faced Lover), stayed on the Turkish music charts for weeks. He released his
fourteenth and final album , Cry Of Love, in 2012
(sadly Murat who had been bravely battling cancer for the last five years died
of a heart attack) b. October 9th 1968.
2015: Johnny Meeks (78) American
guitarist with Gene Vincent & His Blue Caps, born in Gaffney, South Carolina;
he began recording with the band in June 1957 and stayed with them for more than
18 months, through 1958's Record Date album. He played on several pivotal Gene
Vincent tracks, including "Lotta Lovin'" and "Say Mama," which
he wrote himself. He was the guitarist who was with Vincent the longest and appeared
in the 1958 film Hot Rod Gang with the band. When the Blue Caps broke up in late
1958, he joined the Tune Toppers, followed by the Champs. He then went on to perform
with Merle Haggard, Elvis Presley and former Monkee Michael Nesmith, and appeared
on Nesmith's Tantamount to Treason album in 1972.
(?) b. April 16th 1937.
Lynn Anderson (67) American
multi-award-winning country music singer, born in Grand Forks, Nth Dakota. Over
her career she charted 12 No.1, 18 Top 10, and more than 50 Top 40 hits. In addition
to being named "Top Female Vocalist" by the Academy of Country Music
twice and "Female Vocalist of the Year" by the Country Music Association,
Lynn won a Grammy Award (with seven nominations), People's Choice Award and an
American Music Award (AMA). She was named Billboard's Female Artist of the Decade
from 19701980. She
was also the first female country artist to win The American Music Award for Favorite
Country Female Artist in 1974, as well as the first to headline and sellout Madison
Square Garden that same year.
MORE <<< (Lynn
was in hospital in Nashville, recovering from pneumonia when she suffered a fatal
b. September 26th 1947.
Nigel Gray (69) British record producer and medical doctor with a passion
for music. In 1974 he converted a village hall in Leatherhead in the south of
England into a four-track recording studio named Surrey Sound Studios, with his
brother Chris Gray as engineer. In 1977 the studio became 16-track and amongst
others The Police recorded their first album 'Outlandos d'Amour' there. In 1979,
he upgraded the studio again to 24 track and The Police, Siouxsie and the Banshees
and Godley & Creme recorded albums. He was nominated for a Grammy Award for
Best Engineered Album for Zenyatta Mondatta (1981), then won two Grammies for
producer of Best Rock Performance (Don't Stand So Close To Me) and Best Rock Instrumental
(Behind My Camel). In 1987, Nigel sold his studio and retired in Cornwall (?)
1886: Franz Liszt (74)
pianist and composer; as a composer, he was one of the most prominent representatives
of the "Neudeutsche Schule" / "New German School". He left
behind a huge and diverse body of work, in which he influenced his forward-looking
contemporaries and anticipated some 20th-century ideas and trends. Some of his
most notable contributions were the invention of the symphonic poem, developing
the concept of thematic transformation as part of his experiments in musical form
and making radical departures in harmony. He was said by his
contemporaries to have been the most technically advanced pianist of his age and
perhaps the greatest pianist of all time (officially he
died as a result of pneumonia, but he was also suffering from a chronic heart
October 22nd 1811
Jim Reeves (41) American
baritone country singer, born in Galloway, Texas; in his youth he played baseball,
playing in the semi-professional leagues before signing with the St. Louis Cardinals
farm team in 1944 as a right-handed pitcher. He began to work as a DJ, and sang
live between songs. In the late 1940s, he was signed to a couple of small Texas-based
record labels, but with no success. Jim became a member of Moon Mullican's band
and made some early Mullican-style recordings like "Each Beat of my Heart"
and "My Heart's Like a Welcome Mat" from the late 1940s to the early
1950s. After he lowered his singing pitch Jim became known as a crooner because
of his warm, velvety voice. His songs were remarkable for their simple elegance
highlighted by his rich light baritone voice. Songs such as "Adios Amigo",
"Welcome To My World", and "Am I Losing You?" demonstrated
this approach. His Christmas songs have been annual favorites, including "Silver
Bells", "Blue Christmas" and "An Old Christmas Card".
In 1963, he toured Britain, Ireland, Europe and South Africa and starred in a
South African film, Kimberley Jim. In 1964 he visited Njårdhallen, Oslo
in Norway with Bobby Bare, Chet Atkins, the Blue Boys and The Anita Kerr Singers.
They held two concerts; the second was televised and recorded by the Norwegian
first hit in Norway, "He'll Have to Go", reached No.1 and stayed on
the chart for 29 weeks. "I Love You Because" was his biggest hit in
Norway, reaching No.1 in 1964 and staying on the list for 39 weeks. His albums
spent 696 weeks in the Norwegian Top 20 chart, making him among the most popular
artists in the history of Norway. Jim's
last RCA recording session was "Make the World Go Away", "Missing
You", "Is It Really Over?" and "I Can't Stop Loving You".
He made one later recording, however, at the little studio in his home. In July
of 1964 he recorded "I'm a Hit Again", using just an acoustic guitar
as accompaniment. He
was elected posthumously to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1967
(tragically he died in a plane crash; while Jim was flying a single-engine Beechcraft
Debonair aircraft, from Arkansas to Nashville, the plane came down in a violent
storm. Coincidentally, both Jim Reeves and Randy Hughes, the pilot of Patsy Cline's
ill-fated plane, were trained by the same instructor)
b. August 20th 1923.
1966: Earl Rudolph "Bud" Powell (41) American
jazz pianist, born in New York City. Bud has been described as one of "the
two most significant pianists of the style of modern jazz that came to be known
as bop", the other being his friend and contemporary Thelonious Monk. Along
with Monk, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, Bud was a key player in the history
of bebop, and his virtuosity as a pianist led many to call him "the Charlie
Parker of the piano". His first recording date was with Cootie Williams's
band in 1944 and other early recordings included sessions with Frank Socolow,
Dexter Gordon, J. J. Johnson, Sonny Stitt, Fats Navarro and Kenny Clarke. Bud's
first session as a leader was in a trio with Curly Russell and Max Roach, recorded
in 1947, he also recorded on a Charlie Parker date with Miles Davis, Tommy Potter
and Roach in May 1947. He also recorded extentively with Blue Note and other labels
through the 50s. Sadly his career was cut short by schizophrenic behavior, as
his health deteriorated so did his piano talent. He was still recording briefly
in 1963 when he contracted tuberculosis (died while hospitalized)
September 27th 1924.
light classical violinist, bandleader, recording engineer born in Canton, Ohio.
He started out as a light classical violinist, performing in the US and Europe.
After WW2 he organized his own dance band, "The Light Brigade," and
worked in clubs and hotels, including the Grill Room of the Hotel Taft. It was
a conservative band, specializing in music for middle-aged dancers. He recorded
with this band for RCA and Columbia. From 1954-59 he
of Waldorf Music Hall Records, NYC; from 1959-65 director of Grand Award Record
Co, NYC, as well as Record Songs, NYC and also from 1959-65 he was executive VP
& managing director and founder of Command Record Co, NYC. He continued recording
after the sale of Command with a new label called Project 3 (?)
August 18th 1905.
Bobby Van/Robert Jack Stein (51)
American singer, dancer, trumpet, actor born in The Bronx, New York City, and
grew up backstage to many memorable Depression-era acts;
Van began his career playing trumpet. When
his band played a venue in the Catskills, he was asked to fill in as a song and
dance man for another act. His act drew rave reviews, and it gave him a thrill
out of performing live as a solo act. He is best known for his musical and acting
career in films, TV and on Broadway in the 1960s and 1970s. In 1973 he appeared
in the musical remake of Lost Horizon, the last occasion on which he took his
traditional song-and-dance persona to the big screen. His novelty dance number
from Small Town Girl-1953 was featured in That's Entertainment, Part II-1976.
Van's last television appearance was as the host for the Mrs. America Pageant
in 1980, which he had emceed for several years (sadly died
from cancer) b. December 6th 1928.
1986: Theodore "Teddy"
Wilson (73) American
jazz pianist, band leader and arranger, born in Austin,
and is considered one of the most influential jazz pianists of all time..
studied piano and violin at Tuskegee Institute. After working in the Lawrence
"Speed" Webb band, with Louis Armstrong and also "understudying"
Earl Hines in Hines's Grand Terrace Cafe Orchestra, Teddy joined Benny Carter's
Chocolate Dandies in 1933. In 1935 he joined the Benny Goodman Trio, which consisted
of Benny, himself and Gene Krupa, later expanded to the Benny Goodman Quartet
with the addition of Lionel Hampton. By joining the trio, he became the first
black musician to perform in public with a previously all-white jazz group. He
recorded fifty hit records with various singers such as Lena Horne, Helen Ward,
and many of Billie Holiday's greatest successes. During these years he also took
part in many highly regarded sessions with a wide range of important swing musicians,
such as Lester Young, Roy Eldridge, Charlie Shavers, Red Norvo, Buck Clayton and
Ben Webster (?) b.
November 24th 1912.
Seagram Miller (25) American
grangsta rapper from Oakland, California; he
released three albums, the hard-edged and violent The Dark Roads and the more
typically laid-back west coast style Reality Check and 1997's Souls on Ice was
released posthumously after Miller's death (Seagram was
shot to death) b. 1970.
2005: Les Braid (63) English bassist, keyboards
born in Liverpool; in the mid 50s he joined
Ray Ennis's skiffle group Blue Genes
and by 1962, they were working full-time and playing skiffle at venues in Liverpool
and at the Star Club in Hamburg. However they were not liked in Germany so they
changed their direction to rock 'n' roll and changed the bands name to the Swinging
Blue Jeans. They had their first Top 10 hit "Hippy Hippy Shake", in
December of 1963, this was followed by "Good Golly Miss Molly", and
"You're No Good". In 1966 their version of "Don't Make Me Over"
reached No.31 in the UK Chart, the group never charted again. The band then changed
their name to Music Motor for a one off single "Happy", after which
they reverted back to The Swinging Blue Jeans name and the band eventually retired
to the cabaret circuit. They successfully played and later toured on the "Oldie
Shows" until Les's death (sadly died of cancer) b.
September 15th 1937.
2006: Rufus Harley (70)
American jazz musician of mixed Cherokee and
African ancestry, known primarily as the first jazz musician to adopt the Scottish
great Highland bagpipe as his primary instrument. Born in North Carolina, but
at an early age moved with his mother to North Philadelphia. He began playing
the C melody saxophone at age 12, and also played trumpet. He made his bagpipe
performance debut in 1964. From 1965 to 1970 he released four recordings as leader
on the Atlantic label, also recording as a sideman with Herbie Mann, Sonny Stitt,
and Sonny Rollins in the 1960s and 1970s. He later recorded
with Laurie Anderson and The Roots. In addition to bagpipes, on these albums he
also occasionally plays tenor saxophone, flute, or electric soprano saxophone
(sadly died after a fight with prostate cancer)
b. May 20th 1936.
Nookie Boy/Oliver Morgan (74) American rhythm & blues vocalist,
best known for his hit "Who Shot the La La" which sings about the mysterious
situation surrounding the death of singer Lawrence "Prince La La" Nelson
in 1963. Born in New Orleans, he released his debut single on AFO Records under
the pseudonym "Nookie Boy" in 1961; it was in 1964 that he released
his only national hit "Who Shot the La La". In 1998, Nookie Boy released
his first and only full length album "I'm Home" on Allen Toussaint's
Nyno label. Tragically his home was destroyed in Hurricane Katrina, and he evacuated
to Atlanta with his wife where their children were living and sadly he didn't
perform again (Nookie Boy died from a heart attack)
b. May 6th 1933..
Baatin/Titus Glover (35) American rapper; born in Detroit, Michigan,
he started his MC-ing career in 1986,
in these early days he called himself Scandalous-T.
In the early 90's he worked with rapper
Proof accompanying him to hip-hop nights at 1515
Broadway and Stanleys
1991, Baatins hip-hop group, Ssenepod, which was dopeness spelled backward,
changed its name to Slum Village.
Their first album Fan-Tas-Tic Vol.1, comprises of songs from their demo album,
which was recorded in 1996 and 1997, but not officially released until 8 years
later. It was nonetheless leaked onto the underground circuit and caused quite
a stir in 1997. In 2000 they recorded Fantastic Vol. 2, followed by Trinity
(Past, Present and Future), Detroit Deli (A Taste of Detroit) after which Baatin
left the line-up suffering from schizophrenia that briefly incapacitated him.
He later launched his solo career (?)
2010: Mohammad Nouri (80)
singer, he was one of the foremost folk and pop singers in Iran rising to fame
in the 60s with his distinct style of singing he enjoyed 4 decades of popularity
among all generations. His song 'Jaan-e Maryam' as well as his patriotic song
'Iran, Iran' is a well known melody and theme among three generations of Iranians
both before and after the Islamic revolution (blood disorder)
b. October 22nd 1929.
2010: Mitch Miller (99)
American music executive and American musician, singer,
host, record producer, A&R
man and record company executive. A
graduate of the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester in the
early 1930s, he became one of
the most influential figures in American popular music during the 1950s and early
1960s. He is sometimes thought
of as the creator of what would become karaoke with his NBC-TV series, Sing Along
with Mitch. He began his musical career as an accomplished player of the oboe
and English horn, and recorded several highly regarded classical albums featuring
his instrumental work
(sadly Mitch died after a short illness) b.
July 4th 1911
2011: Ljubia "Louis"
Stojanovic (59) Serbian singer; born in Leskovac
he was known for his unique musical style and was in the music business from 1970
until his death. His stage name Louis originated from when he was nine and successfully
performed Louis Armstrong's songs. He graduated from the music high school in
Ni, and got his B.A. in Music from the Faculty of Music in Belgrade, majoring
in voice, composing with arrangement and folklore. He
was among the first to combine jazz with Serbia's folklore. In 1980 he recorded
his first record titled Ne kuni me, ne rui me, majko/Do Not Scold Me, Do
Not Rebuke Me, Mother, gaining high sales. Together with the Serbian band Flamingosi,
he almost won the Beovizija 2006 festival for the Eurovision Song Contest 2006
in Athens, Greece (tragically died in a car accident)
b. June 25th 1952.
2013: Oliver Simon/Werner Gensmantel
(56) German singer, born in Wolfratshausen, he
was founder member of Mixed Emotions formed in 1986. Their best known hit is probably
"You Want Love (Maria, Maria)". Other well-known songs are "Bring
Back (Sha Na Na)", "Sweetheart - Darlin' My Dear", "Just for
You" and "I Never Give Up". After five best selling singles and
two successful albums the group split in 1989. They reunited in 1999 to record
the album We Belong Together and they had a number of successful of TV appearances,
before disbanding again (sadly Oliver died of a brain
tumor) b. May 14th 1957.
2014: Richard Allen
"Dick" Wagner (71) American rock guitarist,
songwriter and author noted for his work with Alice Cooper, Lou Reed, and KISS.
Born in Oelwein, Iowa, but grew up in the Saginaw, Michigan, he formed his first
band The Bossman in the mid 60s. They had several radio hits with his self penned
songs, including "Baby Boy", and "You're The Girl For Me".
In the late 60s he formed his second band The Frost, it was in these days he penned
one of the best-known songs "Only Women Bleed". He moved to New York
in 1972, where he formed the group Ursa Major in which included Billy Joel in
the original line up. The band toured nationally with Jeff Beck and then with
Alice Cooper. The following year, he, along with fellow guitarist Steve Hunter
featured on Lou Reed's >>>
MORE <<< (sadly
died from respiratory
December 14th 1942
2015: Red Dragon/Redman/Leroy
May (49) Jamaican reggae singer; born in Kingston,
he deejayed with several sound systems in the early 1980s, including Barrington
Hi Fi, Stone Love, People's Choice, and his own Rambo Mango, initially working
under the name Redman. His "Laughing Dragon" dubplate became popular,
prompting a change of stage name to Red Dragon. He also started his own Dragon
label, and moved into production,
and helped to nurture the early careers of artists such as Buju Banton
and Terry Ganzie. In the early 1990s, he returned to recording, enjoying hits
with a variety of producers including Riley, Bobby Digital, and Sly & Robbie,
and had a major hit single along with Brian & Tony Gold with "Compliments
on Your Kiss" in 1994, the single reaching number two in the UK Singles Chart
(?) b. 1960.
Michael "Mike" Prabawa Mohede (32) Indonesian
singer and the winner of the second season of Indonesian Idol in 2005, after which
he has released seven studio albums. Mike also represented Indonesia in Asian
Idol, losing to Hady Mirza of Singapore Idol. (tragically
died young of a heart attack) b. November 7th 1983.
Ngapo "Bub" Wehi (82) New Zealand legendary
kapa haka performer, composer and choreographer; raised in Waioeka, he was educated
at Waiti Primary, Waioeka Primary and Opotiki College. He was an exceptional tennis
and rugby player and when he moved to Gisborne to find employment he was chosen
to represent Waihirere Marae in tennis. In
1981 he set up a whanau group called
'Te Waka Huiaout' out of a garage and the following
year they performed at their first regionals at Hoani Waititi Marae in West Auckland.
In 1986 they qualified for their first Nationals in Christchurch and they won
the supreme award. Ngapo went on to become the most decorated exponent of Maori
performing arts and holds the record for the most national wins in the history
of kapa haka. In 2002 he performed for his last time at the Te Matatini Nationals
held in Tamaki Makaurau. "Free the mind, be strong of spirit and you can
achieve anything," was Ngapo's favourite quote and a philosophy he lived
by. Honored after his sad death, he lay in state at Parihimanihi
Marae, Waihirere. (?)
b. February 5th 1934.
If you know any more
to add to this page please
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birthdates and death dates are unique to this site,
I have been working on
them for over 13 years now.
give credit or link if copied
PAGES UPDATED DAILY
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you to everyone who sends me any dates or errors .. so VERY appreciated
! ! Big Thanks to Gary Feest for his daily mistake checking for 2010/11 ! !
Big thanks to John for all the UK jazz musician birthdates throughout
! Big Thanks to Terry Miller for his many monthly updates ! !
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