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2016
MEMORIALS
" Let us remember the great talent each possessed "


Alphonse Mouzon
November 21st 1948 ~ December 25th 2016

American drum titan, Alphonse Mouzon, one of the world's greatest jazz-rock funk-fusion drummers has sadly passed away at the age of 68. He died from neuroendocrine carcinoma, a rare form of cancer. It was only three months ago that Alphonse was informed of the actual severity of his illness, and he was hospitalized. Sadly he leaves behind his loving family including his two sons Alphonse Phillipe and Jean-Pierre, his daughter Emma Alexandra, his sisters Cherry and Elvina, and Granddaughters Andrea and Mikayla.
Alphonse Mouzon
Born on in Charleston, South Carolina, Alphonse attended Bonds-Wilson High School and took some drum lessons from Charles Garner before playing gigs with the Lonnie Hamilton Band. Following graduation from high school, he moved to New York to study music and drama at New York City College and medicine at Manhattan Medical School. While attending college, Alphonse played in the pit band of the Broadway show "Promises, Promises" as well as working as a medical technologist at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital after graduating from Manhattan Medical School.
By 1969 his reputation as a player had spread to such an extent that a medical career was no longer attractive and by the early seventies, he had embarked upon a musical journey that would take him to almost every corner of the world and would establish his reputation as one the most creative musician of the era. He first came to prominence as the drummer for Weather Report in 1971. He recorded several albums with McCoy Tyner and became a Blue Note artists, releasing his first solo record, The Essence of Mystery, in 1972. He recorded more than 25 solo albums during his career and so many more than that as a co-leader or sideman. His last solo album was 2011’s Angel Face. His musical associations read like a Who's Who of Modern Jazz and Pop Music. He was the rhythmic foundation for the far-reaching musical explorations of pianist McCoy Tyner. He was a charter member along with keyboardist Joe Zawinul and saxophonist Wayne Shorter, of the group Weather Report and along with guitarist Larry Coryell, he was co-founder of The Eleventh House, the seminal fusion band of the seventies. Over the course of his career he has also played and/or recorded with Gil Evans, Roy Ayers, George Benson, Herbie Hancock, Dizzy Gillespie, Stanley Clarke, Al DiMeola, Les McCann, Ronnie Laws, Klaus Doldinger's Passport, Jaco Pastorius, Ron Carter, Azar Lawrence, Joey DeFrancesco, Miles Smiles, Albert Mangelsdorff, Joachim Kuhn, Jasper van't Hof, Michel Legrand, Stanley Turrentine, Freddie Hubbard, Hubert Laws, Donald Bird, Chet Baker, Randy Brecker, Michael Brecker, Ernie Watts, Sonny Rollins, Wallace Roney, Arturo Sandoval, Christian McBride, Kenny Barron, Cedar Walton, George Coleman, John Klemmer, Billy Harper, Dave Grusin, Russ Freeman, George Howard, Kirk Whalum, Jeff Lorber, Kenny G., Joanne Brackeen, Horace Parlan, Robin Kenyatta, Kevin Toney, Sunnie Paxson, Ross Carnegie Orchestra, ex-girlfriend Roberta Flack, Sheila E., Celia Cruz, Gloria Lynn, Gloria Coleman, Denise Williams, Freda Payne, Shirley Scott, Anita O'Day, Betty Davis, and in 1991, he performed with Miles Davis on the movie soundtrack album entitled "Dingo". Alphonse also played and/or recorded with and helped the early careers of Tommy Bolin, Lee Ritenour, David Beniot, Gerald Albright, Sam Riney, Brandon Fields, Greg Karukas, Dave Koz, and Richard Elliot. His rock/pop credentials include gigs with Stevie Wonder, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Carlos Santana, Patrick Moraz, Tommy Bolin, Chubby Checker and he appears on Deep Purple's Family Album along with guitarist Tommy Bolin who replaced guitarist Richie Blackmore in the band. Led Zeppelin's lead singer, Robert Plant, named Alphones during his acceptance speech for induction into the 1995 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, as one of the band's major influences. Also in 1992, he founded Tenacious Records, which produced many of his albums. He appeared in four movies, including "That Thing You Do" as the nightclub bandleader. In 2010, Alphonse and his children released the jazz-funk / hip-hop CD call entitled “The Main Attraction"by his oldest son/Rapper Mouson aka Alphonse Philippe Mouzon featuring Alphonse on drums, trumpet, keyboards, bass, guitars along with his daughter pop singer Emma Alexandra Mouzon and Filipino pop singer Sharon T.

George Michael
June 25th 1963 ~ December 25th 2016
One of the world's biggest-selling artists, talented singer, songwriter and music producer, pop superstar George Micheal died suddenly and unexpectedly on Christmas day at the age of 53.
George Michael
Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou in North London, his father was a Greek Cypriot restaurateur who had come to the UK in the 1950s, while his mother was an English dancer.
UPDATING


Rick Parfitt
October 12th 1948 ~ December 24th 2016
Hard-rocking guitarist and songwriter who had multiple hits over 5 decades with the legenary UK rock band Status Quo has died in a hospital in Marbella, Spain, from a severe infection. He had been hospitalized since Thursday due to complications from an earlier shoulder injury stemming from a fall. Married three times Rick sadly leaves behind his wife Lyndsay his four children: Tommy, Lily, Rick Jr. and Harry.


English singer, songwriter and rhythm guitarist Richard John Parfitt was born in Woking, Surrey and first started to learn to play the guitar at the age of 11. In 1963 while performing in The Feathers, Goodge Street, Camden, an agent from Sunshine Holiday Camp on Hayling Island, who gave him a performing job at the camp. Rick joined Jean and Gloria Harrison, aka The Harrison Twins, to form a trio called The Highlights. It was at Butlins where he met future Status Quo partner Francis Rossi, who was playing with Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan in a band called The Spectres, soon to be renamed Traffic Jam. After Rick became friends with the band, their manager Pat Barlow invited him to join the group and in 1967, Traffic Jam changed their name to The Status Quo but soon dropped the definite article. In 50 years, they have had over 60 chart hits in the UK, more than any other rock band, 22 of these reached the Top 10 in the UK Singles Chart, including "Pictures of Matchstick Men" in 1968 (the group's only Top 40 hit in the United States, peaking at number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100), soon followed by "Ice in the Sun" the same year, "Down Down, " in 1974, "Whatever You Want" in 1979 and "In the Army Now" in 1986. In July 1985 the band opened Live Aid at Wembley Stadium with "Rockin' All Over the World". In 1991, Status Quo received a Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music. Status Quo starred in their first feature film, Bula Quo!, which was released to cinemas in July 2013. The film coincided with the release of the soundtrack album Bula Quo!, which peaked at number 10 in the UK Albums Chart. The first single from the album, "Bula Bula Quo" was released in June 2013, and was Quo's one hundredth single release. In 1984, the year before Quo would open Live Aid, Rick and Francis Rossi appeared on the Band Aid charity single, "Do They Know It's Christmas?" and were appointed Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the New Year Honours 2010. In April 2015, along with his wife Lyndsay and Julian Hall, Rick set up "Status Homes", a real estate company based in Marbella, Spain. He had heart attacks in 2011 and 2013 and been unwell for much of the last year, had technically ‘died’ after suffering a cardiac arrest during a Turkey gig in June before being revived.

Greg Lake
November 10th 1947 ~ December 7th 2016

One of the founding fathers of progressive rock, Greg Lake, who fronted both King Crimson and Emerson, Lake and Palmer, known for songs including "In the Court of the Crimson King" and his solo hit "I Believe in Father Christmas" has died after a long and stubborn battle with cancer. The 69 year old musician sadly leaves behind his wife
Regina and his daughter, Natasha.

English singer, bassist, songwriter, and producer, Gregory Stuart "Greg" Lake was born in Parkstone, Poole; he began to play the guitar at age 12 and wrote his first song, "Lucky Man", at the same age. He played in several local bands and became a full time musician at 17. He grew up in Dorset along with future King Crimson founder Robert Fripp, who invited Greg to join his band as as their singer and bassist. They found commercial success with the group's first album, "In the Court of the Crimson King". During the subsequent album tour, Greg met The Nice's keyboardist Keith Emerson and in 1970 the pair decided to form a band, after recruiting drummer Carl Palmer, the progressive rock supergroup, Emerson, Lake & Palmer aka ELP was born. The three performed their
first gig as Emerson, Lake & Palmer at the guildhall in Plymouth on 23 August 1970, but it was their performance at the legendary 1970 Isle of Wight Festival on 29 August that drew the most attention. They released their debut album 'Emerson, Lake & Palmer' that same year, followed by 'Tarkus' in 1971, both of which reached the UK top five and they went on to become one of the most successful groups in the 70s with hits such as "Lucky Man", "From the Beginning", "Peter Gunn" and "Fanfare for the Common Man", although ELP charted more in the the US than in the UK. In 1975, while still a member of ELP, Greg launched a solo career which began with his '75 self penned UK hit single "I Believe in Father Christmas" which reached No.2 on the UK Singles Chart and has become a Yuletide perennial. He went on to release solo albums and singles thereafter, collaborating with several artists in the process including Gary Moore and Tommy Eyre. In 1983, Greg briefly joined the supergroup Asia, and then co-formed Emerson, Lake & Powell, with Cozy Powell replacing Palmer. During the 90s he performed occasional ELP reunions and toured regularly with The Greg Lake Band well into the 21st century. In 2001, he toured as a member of the seventh incarnation of Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band and in 2003, played the bass on The Who song "Real Good Looking Boy". Then in 2006, he played as a member of the supergroup The RD Crusaders in aid for charity. In 2010, Greg and Emerson completed an acoustic world tour, performing ELP songs and in July 2010, Emerson, Lake & Palmer played a one-off 40th anniversary concert, headlining the High Voltage Festival event in Victoria Park, London. His 'Songs of a Lifetime Tour' began in 2012 which featured songs of his career and those by his favourite artists, including Elvis Presley and Johnny Kidd & the Pirates. The tour spawned the live album, Songs of a Lifetime released 2013. On January 9th 2016, Greg was awarded an honorary degree in music and lyrics composition by Conservatorio Nicolini in Piacenza, Italy, the first degree awarded by the conservatory.


Leon Russell
April 2nd 1942 ~ November 13th 2016

Influential songwriter and dynamic performer, dubbed "The Master of Time and Space", the great Leon Russell has died at the age of 74. He had suffered a heart attack in July 2016 and was recovering from heart surgery when sadly he died in his sleep at his home in Nashville, Tennessee. Leon leaves behind a loving family including his wife Jan, four daughters and three grandchildren.
Leon Russell
American multi-instrumentalist, pianist and singer-songwriter born
Claude Russell Bridges, in Lawton, Oklahoma. He began playing piano at the age of four, played baritone horn in his high school marching band and also learned trumpet. He attended Will Rogers High School in Tulsa, where in his same year was a young David Gates, they played and recorded together as the Fencement. After moving to L.A. in 1958, he became a top, in-demand session musician, working as a pianist on the recordings of many notable 1960s musical artists. He was also part of a group of Los Angeles session musicians nicknamed The Wrecking Crew. By the late 1960s, Leon diversified, becoming successful as an arranger and songwriter. During a 60 plus year career, with his trademark top hat, long locks way past his shoulders, a long, lush beard, and dynamic performances played on, arranged, wrote or produced some of the finest records in popular music history. His genres included pop, rock, blues, country, bluegrass, standards, gospel, and surf records, with six Gold Records to his credit. His collaboration records rank as some of the most successful and as a touring musician, he performed with hundreds of Hall of Fame artists. He recorded 31 albums and at least 430 songs. He wrote "Delta Lady", in homage to Rita Coolage and recorded by Joe Cocker, and he organized and performed with Cocker's Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour in 1970. In 1971 Leon performed at the Concert for Bangladesh along with Dylan and Eric Clapton, at Madison Square Garden, one of the first big charity concerts. He also played piano in the Shindogs, the house band on the ABC live music show "Shindig!". Leon has worked with and performed on on albums by the Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, George Harrison, Delaney Bramlett, Freddy Cannon, Ringo Starr, Doris Day, Bob Dylan, Elton John, Eric Clapton, the Byrds, Barbra Streisand, the Ventures, Willie Nelson, Badfinger, Tijuana Brass, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, Sam Cooke, Willie Nelson, The Band, J. J. Cale, B.B. King, Dave Mason, Glen Campbell, Joe Cocker, the Rolling Stones, the Flying Burrito Brothers, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, Bobby "Boris" Pickett, New Grass Revival, Herb Alpert, Frank Sinatra, Ike & Tina Turner, and the Rolling Stones to mention just some. He played piano and keyboards on many Phil Spector productions, including recordings by the Ronettes, the Crystals, Darlene Love, and Spector's 1963 Christmas album. He released his debut solo album, 'Leon Russell', in 1970, then in 1973, his “Leon Live” album reached the Top 10, and he recorded his first album of country songs under the pseudonym Hank Wilson. The fledgling Gap Band, also from Oklahoma, backed him in 1974 on his album “Stop All That Jazz”. His 1975 album “Will o’ the Wisp” included what would be his last Top 20 pop hit, “Lady Blue”. One of his biggest early fans, Elton John, said Leon was a "mentor" and "inspiration", and they recorded The Union in 2010, Elton's only duet album, which was later nominated for a Grammy. Leon also sat in on Elsiv Costello’s 2010 album, “National Ransom”, after which he bought a new bus and returned to the road, on his own. He wrote and recorded the hits "Tight Rope", "Lady Blue" and more than 100 artists have recorded his "A Song for You". Leon was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011. At the Lockn' Festival in 2015, he played at the Wildflower! Arts and Music Festival in Richardson, Texas and September 2015, saw Leon back on stage with Rita Coolidge, Claudia Lennear, Chris Stainton and other members of the 1970 Joe Cocker Mad Dogs and Englishmen Tour for a special tribute concert to Joe Cocker organized by the Tedeschi Trucks Band. The following year in 2016, he extended a nationwide concert tour to enthusiastic crowds and was planning to tour into 2017.

Leonard Cohen CC GOQ
September 21st 1934 ~ November 7th 2016

Legendary poet, songwriter and performer, the hugely influential Leonard Cohen passed away peacefully at his home in Los Angeles at the age of 82. Sadly Leonard leaves behind a loving family including two children, his son Adam a musician, and his daughter Lorca a director, and 2 grandchildren, Cassius and Viva.
Leonard Cohen
Canadian musician, Leonard Norman Cohen was born in Westmount, Quebec, an English-speaking area of Montreal, where he attended Roslyn Elementary School, Herzliah High School and Westmount High School, where he was involved with the student council and studied music and poetry. He take up the guitar at age 13, and he was soon playing country music in Montreal’s cafes, eventually forming a group called the Buckskin Boys. In 1951 he enrolled at McGill University, where he became president of the McGill Debating Union and won the Chester MacNaghten Literary Competition for the poems "Sparrows" and "Thoughts of a Landsman". He then started reading his poems aloud at small clubs around the city and published his first poems in March 1954 in the magazine CIV/n. Although he continued to write poems as his career blossomed, it was as a songwriter that he found fame. His song "Suzanne" became a hit for Judy Collins and for many years his most covered song. Leonard made his debut at the 1967 Newport Folk Festival, where among the audience was A&R rep John Hammond, who quickly added him to his impressive roster. Leonard's first album was ‘Songs of Leonard Cohen’, his second ‘Songs From a Room’ featured his first classic track, ‘Bird on the Wire’. In 1971 the film director Robert Altman became a fan and featured three of Leonard’s songs in his Western film ‘McCabe and Mrs Miller’:- "The Stranger Song", "Winter Lady" and "Sisters of Mercy". In the 70's he made TV appearances and
many tours, twice with Jennifer Warnes as a backup singer. In the early 1980s, he co-wrote the rock musical film Night Magic with Lewis Furey and he released his most famous song, ‘Hallelujah’, in 1984, to many epitomises Leonard’s unique gift - a song that is, at once, haunting, mournful, uplifting, religious and romantic; it has been performed by nearly 200 artists in several languages, made most famous in a cover version by the late Jeff Buckley. Other well-known songs include "So Long, Marianne," "Famous Blue Raincoat" and "The Future". He never stopped working, he travelled the world, performing and meeting fans, even playing 246 dates between the years 2008 and 2010, and then set off again between 2012 and 2013. He gathered many awards on his journey, which include The Golden Rose, the Governor General's Award, a Meteor Music Award, the Glenn Gould Prize, a Genie Award, the Prince of Asturias Award and around 6 Juno Awards. He has been honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, the Companion of the Order of Canada and as a Grand Officer of the National Order of Quebec as well as being inducted into Canadian Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Folk Music Walk of Fame, the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His son Adam stated, "My father passed away peacefully at his home in Los Angeles with the knowledge that he had completed what he felt was one of his greatest records, "You Want It Darker". He was writing up until his last moments with his unique brand of humour".


Sir Jimmy Young
September 21st 1921 ~ November 7th 2016

Fifties singer, dee-jay, radio host and UK national treasure, Jimmy Young, has died peacefully in his sleep at his home with his wife by his bed-side, at the age of 95. Sadly Jimmy leaves behind his third wife, Alicia and his only child, his daughter Lesley, from his first marriage.
Jimmy Young
English singer and radio personality, Jimmy Young, was born Leslie Ronald Young in Cinderford, Gloucestershire, where he attended East Dean Grammar School. After his parents divorced in 1939, he left for South Wales to work as an electrician and later joined the RAF staying until 1949, becoming a PT Instructor. While singing and playing piano on the club circuit he landed a record deal in 1949 with the new Polygon Records. His most popular song was "Too Young" in 1951, a huge sheet music seller at the time. He also recorded two duets with Petula Clark that year, "Mariandl" and "Broken Heart". In 1952, he signed a recording contract with Decca, with who he enjoyed Top 10 successes with "Eternally", "Chain Gang" and "More" and two No.1 hits with "Unchained Melody" and "The Man from Laramie". After a period dee-jaying with Radio Luxembourg, Jimmy joined the BBC as one of the first disc jockeys on BBC, as a presenter, he was soon fronting Housewives' Choice, a record request show on the BBC's Light Programme with the biggest daytime audience on radio, and the music programme Flat Spin. Then with Radio One, presenting the weekday mid-morning show from 1967 to 1973. In 1973 he joined BBC Radio 2, where he presented a regular programme, which he referred to as 'The JY Prog', until his retirement from broadcasting at the end of 2002. He also developed a popular approach to current affairs and regularly interviewed Margaret Thatcher while she was prime minister. He broadcast from around the world, including several live shows from Moscow, the first in 1977, and interviewed every British prime minister from 1964 to 2010. His theme music was "Town Talk" by Ken Woodman & His Piccadilly Brass and BFN, 'Bye for now', was one of his catchphrases.
He had more than 5 million listeners regularly tuning in, but in 2002 he was pushed out of the door by a BBC obsessed with presenting a youthful image; his millions of fans were so disgusted that the issue was raised in Parliament. Shortly after leaving the BBC, Jimmy wrote a newspaper column attacking his former employer for instances of "brutality", and making clear that it had not been his idea to leave. He continued to write a weekly column for the Sunday Express newspaper until he retired from this role in November 2014. However he returned to BBC Radio 2 in 2011 with a special one-hour programme in celebration of his 90th birthday, 'Sir Jimmy Young at 90', broadcast on 20 September 2011. His first autobiography, "J.Y.: The Autobiography of Jimmy Young", was published in 1974 and a second autobiography, "Forever Young: The Autobiography", was published in 2003. Over his very long career, Jimmy was highly honored, he received an OBE in 1979, a CBE in 1993, and at the beginning of 2002, he was knighted for services to broadcasting.


Bobby Vee
April 30th 1943
~ Oct 24th 2016
With over three dozen Hot 100 hits, 60s teen idol, the legendary Bobby Vee has died of advanced Alzheimer's disease. He was 73 years old. Sadly Bobby's wife of 52 years, Karen, died last year, but he leaves behind a loving family including their three sons and a daughter.

Bobby Vee, American pop singer, teen idol and actor was born Robert Thomas Velline in Fargo, North Dakota. He had thirty-eight Hot 100 chart hits, ten of which reached the Top 20 and six gold singles in his career. His career began in the midst of the Buddy Holly plane crash tragedy, when a 15 years old Bobby and a hastily assembled band of Fargo schoolboys calling themselves the Shadows were given the unenviable job of filling in for Holly and his band at the Moorhead engagement. In 1963, he released a tribute album called 'I Remember Buddy Holly', in the liner notes, Bobby recalled Holly's influence on him and the events surrounding Holly's death. Early in his career, a musician calling himself Elston Gunnn briefly toured with Bobby's band. This was Robert Zimmerman, who went on to fame, as Bob Dylan. Dylan later recalled that Bobby "had a metallic, edgy tone to his voice and it was as musical as a silver bell". Bobby started recording in 1959 with "Suzie Baby", a nod to Buddy Holly, then a cover of Adam Faith's "What Do You Want". These were followed by a long string of legendary 60s pop hits including "More Than I Can Say", "Devil or Angel", "How Many Tears", Baby Face, "Rubber Ball, "Come Back When You Grow Up", "Take Good Care of My Baby", "Run to Him, "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes", and many others. Bobby was also a pioneer in the music video genre, appearing in several musical films, as well as in the Scopitone series of early film-and-music jukebox recordings. He went on to become a bona fide star and regularly performed at the Winter Dance Party memorial concerts in Clear Lake; his three sons, all musicians themselves, performed with him there. Perennially popular in Britain, where he toured regularly for years after his hit parade heydays, Bobby numbered Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice among his fans and performed at Webber’s 50th birthday party in 1998. He continued touring and performing live until 2011 when diagnosed with an early stage of Alzheimer's disease. In March 2011, he was honored as an inductee into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame and in 2014 he was honored again into the Scandinavian-American Hall of Fame.


Pete Burns
August 5th 1959 ~ October 23rd 2016

The tragic 80s icon, founder of pop band, Dead and Alive, Pete Burns, has died unexpectidly and suddenly of a massive cardiac arrest, aged 57 years old. He sadly leaves behind his family, his loyal former wife Lynne, his loving partner Michael Simpson, and many friends.

English singer-songwriter and television personality, born Peter Jozzeppi Burns was born in Bebington, to a Liverpudlian father and German mother who was a survivor of the Holocaust. Pete dropped out of his Liverpool boys school at the age of 14 after he was summoned to the headmaster’s office “with no eyebrows, Harmony-red hair and one gigantic earring”. As a teenager he worked at a Liverpool record shop, Probe Records, which became a meeting place for local musicians. Pete first performed as a member of the short-lived Mystery Girls, and then Nightmares in Wax, a proto-Goth group that formed in Liverpool in 1979. Nightmares in Wax released a 12" single, "Black Leather", and a 7" single, "Birth of a Nation", each containing the same three songs, but never produced an album. In 1980, after replacing several members, Pete changed their name to Dead or Alive, in which he was vocalist and songwriter. After a minor hit in 1984 with a cover version of "That's the Way (I Like It)", the band had a number one hit in the UK in 1985 with "You Spin Me Round". The song went on to become a hit all over the world, including the US where it reached the Top 20. In December 2003, the BBC had to apologise to its viewers after Burns swore repeatedly on its pre-9pm watershed Liquid News show when asked about his views on the Michael Jackson trial. He rose to further celebrity status in the British media following his appearance on Celebrity Big Brother 4 in 2006, in which he finished in fifth place. He appeared on further television reality shows, including as a presenter. In early 2006, Pete revealed in an interview that he had spent most of his life savings on eighteen months of reconstructive surgery after a cosmetic procedure on his lips went wrong and in January 2007 he announced that he was planning to sue the cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Maurizio Viel, who performed his faulty lip surgery in Italy, for £1 million. Pete had undergone over 300 cosmetic surgery procedures, through his addiction and also trying to right the wrong procedure and sadly died broke because of it and legal battles.

Prince Buster
May 24th 1938 ~ September 8th 2016

Jamaican musical pioneer Prince Buster, regarded as one of the most important figures in the history of "ska" and "rocksteady" music and dubbed "The King of Ska," has sadly died in the Memorial Regional Hospital, Miami, after battling ill health and several strokes over the past 8 years. The 78 year old Prince Buster is survived by his wife Mola, 19 children, and numerous grandchildren.
Prince Buster
Jamaican singer-songwriter, pioneer and producer Prince Buster, was born Cecil Bustamente Campbell, and is regarded as one of the most important figures in the history of ska and rocksteady music. The records he released in the 1960s influenced and shaped the course of Jamaican contemporary music and created a legacy of work that later reggae and ska artists would draw upon. He was born on Orange Street in Kingston, but in the early 1940s, was sent to live with his grandmother in rural Jamaica. Back in Kingston, as a teen, he attended the Central Branch School and St. Anne's School. He earned the nicknames "Prince" for his pre-music career as a street boxer and "Buster", (from his middle name) after Jamaican Labour party leader Sir Alexander Bustamante. While still at school Buster performed three or four times a week at the Glass Bucket Club as part of Frankie Lymon's Sing and Dance Troupe. He soon became more actively involved in the operational side of running a sound system after he was introduced to Clement 'Coxsone' Dodd, a musically inclined businessman who operated one of Kingston's most popular sound systems. Coxsone took Buster on as a security guard-cum-personal helper, and the young Buster used the experience to learn all he could about the fledgling Jamaican music business. He left Dodd in the late 1950s to set up a record store, Buster's Record Shack, and then his own sound system, he called 'Voice of the People'. "Oh Carolina", a 1959 song that featured the Nyahbinghi beats of Count Ossie And The Mystic Revelation of Rastafari, became the biggest seller in the Voice Of The People catalogue. In 1961, he released his first single "Little Honey"/"Luke Lane Shuffle" featuring Jah Jerry, Drumbago and Rico Rodriquez recording under the name of Buster's Group. Prince Buster recorded prolifically throughout the 1960s; his notable early ska releases included: "Madness" (1963), "Wash Wash" (1963), "One Step Beyond" (1964)' "Al Capone" (1964) and "Judge Dread" (1967). The 1964 documentary "This is Ska" hosted by Edward Seaga and filmed at the Sombrero Club, includes Buster performing his Jamaican hit "Wash Wash". In 1964 he met World Heavyweight Champion boxer Muhammad Ali who invited him to attend a Nation of Islam talk at Mosque 29 in Miami, where he made his home. That year Buster joined the Nation of Islam and also started to release material, including a version of Louis X's "White Man's Heaven is a Black Man's Hel" on his own imprint label called "Islam". In 1965 he appeared in the short film "Millie in Jamaica" which was broadcast on the UK TV pop show Ready, Steady, Go!, and he had a top twenty hit in the UK with the single "Al Capone", making him the first Jamaican to have a top 20 hit in Britain; he toured the UK in spring 1967 appearing at the Marquee Club, after which he toured America. By the late 1960s he was once again at the forefront of a musical change in Jamaica; the new music would be called rocksteady, his tracks like "Shaking Up Orange Street" were arranged with the slower, more soulful rocksteady template, which was soon used many others. In 1979 the British band Madness released their first single on 2-Tone, a tribute to Buster called "The Prince". The B-side was a cover of the Campbell song "Madness" from which they took their name, while The Specials did a version of Enjoy Yourself in 1980. In 2001 Prince Buster was awarded the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican Government for his contribution to music. He performed at the 2002 Legends Of Ska festival in Toronto. Other notable appearances include: Sierra Nevada World Music Festival in 2003; the 2006 Boss Sounds Reggae Festival in Newcastle upon Tyne, the 40th Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland with the Delroy Williams Junction Band, and the 2007 UK Rhythm Festival. Sadly Prince Buster had reportedly been in poor health for some time before his death, and he had suffered a series of strokes, one of which in 2009 had caused him to stop touring.

Bernie Worrell
April 19th 1944 ~ June 24th 2016

One of the most influential keyboardists in modern music, Bernie Worrell, who helped shape the sound Parliament-Funkadelic, reshaped the sound of Talking Heads and influenced countless artists across a wide range of genres, died fighting lung cancer at the age of 72. Sadly he leaves behind his wife, Judie, who was also his manager.
Bernie Worrell Jr
American organist, keyboard player and composer,
George Bernard Worrell Jr was born in Long Branch, New Jersey, and grew up in Plainfield. By age three he had began piano lessons and he wrote a concerto at aged eight. He went on to study at the Juilliard School and received a degree in 1967. As a college student, he played with Chubby & The Turnpikes which eventually evolved into Tavares. In 1968 he was a founding member of the funk, soul and rock music collective Parliament-Funkadelic. It was in this period he became interested in synthesizers through listening to a group not otherwise known for its contributions to funk, the British progressive rock band Emerson, Lake & Palmer. When P-Funk took a hiatus from touring in the early 1980s, Bernie was recruited to perform and record with Talking Heads during their most inventive period. He was a de facto member of the group for most of the '80s and was invited to perform with Talking Heads at their one-off reunion as part of their 2002 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Also Bernie and other P-Funk members were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997. From the late 1980s through the 2010s, Bernie recorded extensively with Bill Laswell; he became a visible member of the jam band scene, performing in many music festivals, oftern billed as Bernie Worrell and the Woo Warriors; he appeared on several Jack Bruce albums, including A Question of Time, Cities of the Heart, Monkjack and More Jack than God; he appeared on the Red Hot Organization's compilation album, Stolen Moments: Red Hot + Cool, which raised awareness and funds in support of the AIDS epidemic in the African-American community, and was heralded as "Album of the Year" by TIME Magazine; he joined the rock group Black Jack Johnson, as well as joining forces with bass legend Les Claypool, guitarist Buckethead and drummer Bryan Mantia to form the group Colonel Claypool's Bucket of Bernie Brains. He also worked on his project Baby Elephant; appeared in the 2004 documentary film "Moog" with synthesizer pioneer Bob Moog; 2005 saw the release of "Stranger: Bernie Worrell on Earth", a documentary film about Worrell's life, music and impact and in 2009 he joined longtime Parliament-Funkadelic guitarist DeWayne "Blackbyrd" McKnight, bassist Melvin Gibbs and drummer J.T. Lewis to form the band SociaLybrium. From 2011 through 2015, Bernie performed with his group, the Bernie Worrell Orchestra, which became known for the appearance of special guests at live performances, including Bootsy Collins, Tina Weymouth, Chris Frantz, Jimmy Destri, Mike Watt, Rah Digga and Gary Lucas. He was a judge for the 12th, 13th, and 14th annual Independent Music Awards, worked on the Seattle-based Khu.éex' project fusing traditional Tlingit music with funk, jazz, and experimental music and appeared in the movie Ricki and the Flash as the keyboard player in Meryl Streep's band. During May 2016, the New England Conservatory of Music gave Bernie, an honorary Doctor of Music degree. A tribute and benefit concert to raise funds for Bernie's cancer treatment, produced by the Black Rock Coalition and featured George Clinton and Bootsy Collins of P-Funk, David Byrne and Jerry Harrison of the Talking Heads, Fred Schneider of the B-52s, Buckethead, Living Colour and Questlove, among others, all whom Bernie had worked over his career, performed at the “All The WOO In The World” on April 4th and 5th 2016, and of course Bernie played too. The crowd shouted “We love you, Bernie!”, holding a proclamation from the mayor of Newark, N.J., in his honor he struggled for words “I don’t know what to –” he said “Thank you,” and finally “I love you, too”.


Henry McCullough
July 21st 1943 ~ June 14th 2016

Former Wings guitarist, ex-Grease Band member and Northern Ireland music legend, Henry McCullough has died. The 72 year old musician had been battling with heart problems since 2012 and sadly he leaves behind his loving long-time French wife of 35 years, Josie.


Northern Irish guitarist, vocalist and songwriter Henry McCullough was born in Portstewart and he first came to prominence in the early 1960s as the teenage lead guitarist with The Skyrockets showband from Enniskillen and the band Gene and The Gents. In 1967 he moved to Belfast and formed the psychedelic band The People. Later that year the band moved to London and changed the group’s name to Éire Apparent. In 1969 Henry joined Joe Cocker's Grease Band, he toured the U.S. and performed at the Woodstock Festival with Joe. He played on The Grease Band's eponymous album after leaving Cocker and during his time with the band he also appeared as lead guitarist on Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar and on the progressive Spooky Tooth album The Last Puff in 1970. In 1971 Paul McCartney asked him to join his new band, Wings; hiis guitar solo on "My Love" has been described as one of rock music’s greatest solos. Henry's spoken words "I don't know; I was really drunk at the time" can be heard on the Pink Floyd album The Dark Side of the Moon in 1973, at the end of the song "Money"; he was recalling a fight he had the night before with his wife. During the 70s he played concerts as a session musician with Roy Harper, Frankie Miller, Eric Burdon, Marianne Faithfull, Ronnie Lane and Donovan. In 1977 he temporarily joined Dr. Feelgood, following the departure of Wilko Johnson. He returned to Ireland in the 80s and began to sit in with old friends The Fleadh Cowboys. In 1998 Henry travelled to Poland, where he rehearsed with a band of Polish musicians for a tour. After the tour, they recorded a 'live' album which was released as Blue Sunset. This was followed by a further Polish tour. In the 2000s he continued to record, perform and released solo material, including Belfast To Boston and toured extensively with his own band. He also worked with the likes of the Alaskan musician, The Rev Neil Down, Dave Sharp from the Alarm, The Hard Travelers, Jeff Greene and others. In December 2009 he attended Paul McCartney's concert at the O2 in Dublin and McCartney publicly acknowledged Henry's contribution to Wings. On 13 March 2010, he and his band were the headline act at the Fifestock Festival at the Inn at Lathones, Scotland. Henry remained active in the European music scene and he played regular live gigs with artists including Ed Deane, James Delaney, Noel Bridgeman, and John Quearney. In 2011 he collaborated with songwriter Paul Doherty and The Vals on the track 'Look to the One'. Tragically Henry suffered a heart attack in November 2012, leaving him in critical condition and from which he never completely recovered.

Chips Moman
June 12th 1937 – June 13th 2016

Guitarist, legendary record producer and songwriter Chips Moman, who helped Elvis Presley engineer a musical comeback in the late 1960s has sadly died from lung disease. Twice married, 79 year old Chips is survived by his wife Jane, his son Casey, and daughter Monique.
Lincoln "Chips" Moman
American record producer, guitarist and songwriter was born Lincoln Wayne Moman in LaGrange, Georgia. After moving to Memphis, as a teenager, he played in Warren Smith's road band, before moving to Los Angeles in 1957 with Johnny Burnette's band and touring with Gene Vincent. While in LA, he played guitar on sessions recorded at the Gold Star Studios. Returning to Memphis, he began working with Satellite Records where he later helped the formation of Stax Records. He then began operating his own Memphis recording studio, American Sound Studio. At American Sound, he, along with guitarists Reggie Young and Bobby Womack, bassist Tommy Cogbill, pianist and organist Bobby Emmons, and drummer Gene Chrisman, recorded the Box Tops, Womack, Merrilee Rush, Mark Lindsay, Sandy Posey, Joe Tex, Wilson Pickett, Herbie Mann, Roy Hamilton, Neil Diamond, and Petula Clark. During this period Chips established a songwriting partnership with fellow Memphis producer and songwriter Dan Penn. The pair co-wrote "Do Right Woman, Do Right Man", recorded by Aretha Franklin, and "The Dark End of the Street", which became the best-known song of the soul singer James Carr. He also played guitar on Franklin's recording sessions at the FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, American Sound became one of the most successful recording studios in the country, producing more than 120 charting singles by pop, soul, and country artists and at one point contributing over a quarter of the hits on the Billboard Hot 100. In 1968 Elvis Presley asked Chips to help him rediscover his mojo, as the singer’s career was flagging badly. Chips selected the songs that would revive Presley’s career, backed him with the hottest band on the circuit and taught “the King” to rock’n’roll again. As a result Chips produced the Presley's 1969 album, 'From Elvis in Memphis' and hit songs including "In the Ghetto", "Suspicious Minds", "Kentucky Rain" and others. In 1971 Chips briefly operated a studio in Atlanta before he moved to Nashville, where along with fellow producer Larry Butler, he produced and co-wrote hits for B. J. Thomas, "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song" in 1975 which earned him a Grammy Award. He also co-wrote "Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)" for Waylon Jennings, and produced albums by Willie Nelson, Gary Stewart, Tommy Roe, Merle Haggard, Ronnie Milsap, Tammy Wynette, Billy Joe Royal and Petula Clark to mention a few. In 1985 he also produced Highwayman, the first studio album released by country supergroup The Highwaymen, comprising Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson, the group's most successful album. In the mid-1980s, Mr. Moman was lured back to Memphis by the mayor and a prominent banker who hoped to revive the city’s former reputation as a music capital. He quickly recorded the album “Class of ’55,” a reunion of the Sun artists Mr. Cash, Mr. Perkins, Mr. Orbison and Jerry Lee Lewis. But an ill-fated Ringo Starr album, never released, put an end to the Memphis experiment.
Chips returned to Nashville, where he worked successfully for another decade before finally returning to his hometown LaGrange, Georgia in the mid-late 1990s.

David "Swarb" Swarbrick
April 5th 1941 ~ June 3rd 2016

Virtuoso fiddle player David Swarbrick who found fame as a member of the influential folk rock group Fairport Convention and performed with dozens of top folk musicians has died at 75 years old, after struggling for years with emphysema. Married several times, he sadly leaves behind his loving wife, artist Jill Banks; his three children, Emily, Alexander and Isobel; eight grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

English folk violin player, viola, mandolin, guitarist and singer-songwriter, described as 'the most influential British fiddle player bar none' and his style has been copied or developed by almost every British, and many world folk violin players who have followed him. Born David Cyril Eric Swarbrick in London, he moved to North Yorkshire when only three months old, then to Birmingham, where he attended Birmingham College of Art. At the age of six he learnt the rudiments of the fiddle and went on to became a much sought-after session musician, which has led him throughout his long career to work with many of the major figures in folk and folk rock music. At the age of 15 he became an apprentice printer and, with the fiddle confined to the attic, he played the guitar in a skiffle group, which won a competition. The prize was to meet the folk musicians Beryl and Roger Marriott. Beryl told him that guitarists would soon be two a penny, but fiddlers would be hard to find. Before long, Swarb, was playing the fiddle in Beryl’s English folk dance band and they also paired up in the Emerald Isle Ceilidh Band, which introduced him to Birmingham’s Irish musicians. He also played alongside Beryl’s close friend, the Scottish fiddle player Kate Graham and, within a short time, he was absorbing English, Irish and Scottish tunes and styles. He joined the Ian Campbell Folk Group in 1960 and also played on recordings A. L. Lloyd, Ewan MacColl, and Peggy Seeger. In 1965 he began to work with Martin Carthy, before joining folk rock group Fairport Convention, in 1969. His first album with Fairport was Full House in 1970. In 1979 the band played a farewell concert in Cropredy, Oxfordshire and apart from occasional reunions, disbanded. Swarb's next project was a highly regarded duo with former Fairport guitarist Simon Nicol, which produced three albums. In 1984 he decided to move to Scotland, then in 1993 he moved to Australia where he worked with Alistair Hulett; they produced three highly acclaimed CDs. He returned to England in 1996, and he and Kevin Dempsey started making music together, but while touring Europe with Kevin in 1999, Swarb became seriously ill and over the next 5 years battled against emphysema. He underwent three tracheotomies and sometimes had to perform with an oxygen canister on stage to help with his breathing. After his double lung transplant operation in October 2004, he had a new zest for life and has travelled Britain, Europe and Australia playing with his band, Swarb’s Lazarus, and also re-united with both Martin Carthy and Alistair Hulett for outstanding duo tours as well as many solo performances. Swarb has received the highest award from the English Folk Dance and Song Society, the Gold Badge, in 2002 and the Gold Badge of Merit from the British Academy of Composers and Songwriters, again their highest accolade, in 2003. In 2004 Swarbs received a Lifetime Achievement Award in the annual BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and in 2006 Fairport Convention received an award for "Liege And Lief", the most influential album of all time, as voted for by the listeners. Throughout his very busy career he recorded with many other artists besides the above, including Sandy Denny, A.L. Lloyd, Nigel Denver, Dis Disley, John Renbourn, Peter Bellamy, Vashti Bunyan, Richard Thompson, Al Stewart, Julie Felix, Lorna Campbell, Brian Maxine, Bat McGrath, Simon Nicol, Whippersnapper, Beehive, Band of Hope, Leon Rosselson, Pete Hawkes, Alistair Hulett, Keith Hancock, Eureka!, On Steve Ashley, Roy Bailey, John Kirkpatrick , Bert Jansch, The Jason Wilson Band, The Geoff Everett Band, Red Shoes, Said The Maiden to mention some as well as over a dozen solo albums.

Candye Kane
November 13th 1961 ~ May 6th 2016

Vibrant San Diego blues, jazz and roots-rock dynamo, Candye Kane, who repeatedly battled against pancreatic cancer for eight years, has sadly died at the age of 54 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. She is survived by her two sons, Evan and Thomas; her mother and stepfather, Janet and Eugene Caleb; and her former husband, Thomas Yearsley, the bass guitarist and singer of the roots-rock band The Paladins.
Canddye Kane
American blues and jazz singer-songwriter and pornographic actress, Candye Kane was born Candace Hogan in Ventura, CA, and raised in Highland Park, an L.A. suburb. She was accepted into the USC's music conservatory's junior opera program in 1976, but she disliked opera and dropped out. She became part of the punk rock music scene of the early 1980s and shared the stage with musicians as diverse as Black Flag, Social Distortion, James Harman, The Circle Jerks, Los Lobos, The Blasters and Lone Justice. When she turned 18, she turned to adult modeling and stripping to make some cash, appearing in videos and over 150 magazines from 1983 to 1985. Eventually she worked as a columnist for Gent magazine as well. In 1986, Candye moved from LA to San Diego. Candye then majored in women's studies at Palomar Community College and as well as sonfwriting she turned to performing blues and jazz and went on to tour worldwide more than 250 days a year, and appeared in many prestigious festivals, including the Ascona Jazz Festival, Midem, Paléo Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Dubai International Jazz Festival, Waterfront Blues Festival, and Notodden Blues Festival. She played for the President of Italy at the French Embassy in Rome and at the Cannes Film Festival. Among the songs that she wrote were "The Toughest Girl Alive", used on the Hidden Palms series for the CW network; "Who Do You Love" which was nominated for an OUT music award; "200 Pounds of Fun", featured in the movie The Girl Next Door; "For Your Love" included on an episode of The Chris Isaak Show; "Please Tell Me a Lie" used in the movie picture Heavy; "You Need a Great Big Woman" heard on the Oxygen Network series Strong Medicine; and "The Lord was a Woman" which was recorded by comedian Judy Tenuta. Over her career, she has been honoured with many awards including winning Artist of the Year at the San Diego Music Awards and won the California Music Award for Best Swing-Cabaret Artist and in May 2007, she won an award for Best Original Blues composition by the West Coast Songwriters Association for her song, "I'm My Own Worst Enemy. In 2011, she was nominated for two Blues Music Awards by the Blues Foundation, BB King Entertainer of the Year, and Best Contemporary Blues Female. In January 2009, a stage play about her life debuted at San Diego's Diversionary Theatre; the play, called "The Toughest Girl Alive", was based on her turbulent life. Her final performance was a New Year’s Eve show at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach. Her most recent U.S. tour was in December, which was preceded by a tour last summer of Europe and Israel.

Lonnie McIntosh aka Lonnie Mack
July 18th 1941 ~ April 21st 2016

Influencial American rock-blues icon, the "guitar hero's guitar hero", Lonnie Mack has sadly passed away from natural causes at the Centennial Medical Center in Smithville, Tennesse, at the age of 74. Lonnie has been married and divorced three times; survivors include his five children; two sisters; a brother; eight grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.

American singer, guitarist virtuoso, and pioneer born, Lonnie McIntosh, in West Harrison, Indiana; he began playing at the age of seven, using an acoustic guitar, as they had no electicity at home, he had traded for a bicycle. He quit school in the sixth grade after fighting with a teacher and soon began professional music engagements in local clubs, eventually changing his last name to Mack. As a teen-aged solo artist in the late 1950s, he recorded a cover of Al Dexter's 1944 western swing hit, "Pistol Packin' Mama". During the same period, he played lead guitar for his older cousins, Aubrey Holt and Harley Gabbard, on two recordings, The Stanley Brothers' "Too Late to Cry" and the cousins' own "Hey, Baby". His 1963 LP The Wham of That Memphis Man!, boasted his instrumental rendition of Chuck Berry's "Memphis," which became a surprise Billboard Top Five hit. Mack soon became known for his "blue-eyed soul" style of singing and his virtuosic guitar abilities that straddled genres like country, blues and R&B and, as Rolling Stone noted in a 1968 review, "a pioneer in rock guitar soloing"; he influenced an entire generation of guitarists like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Duane Allman, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Keith Richards, Jimmy Page, Dickie Betts, Ray Benson, Bootsy Collins, Ted Nugent, Ronnie Wood, John Mayall and so many more. He also served as a session guitarist for artists like James Brown, Hank Ballard and Freddie King. Lonnie was also well known for his 1958 Gibson Flying V guitar, an instrument Lonnie as a teenager specifically ordered from a Cincinnati music shop because it resembled an arrow and has the serial number of #007. In 1975, he was shot during an altercation with an off-duty police officer. His account of the incident is preserved in one of his better-known late-career tunes, "Cincinnati Jail". According to the lyrics of that tune, the officer's unmarked car narrowly missed Lonnie while he was walking across a city street. As it brushed past him, Lonnie hit it on the fender, shouting "better slow it down!". The officer stopped, emerged from his car, shot him "in the leg", then hauled him before a judge, who threw Lonnie in jail. He recovered, but virtually disappeared from the music scene. For the next several years, he rarely performed in public, except at his "Friendship Music Park" in rural southern Indiana, where he showcased bluegrass and traditional country artists. Then in '77, he performed at a "Save the Whales" benefit concert in Japan. In 1983, he relocated to Texas, where he played regularly at venues in Dallas and Austin, it is here, despite the age gap, where he became close friends with Stevie Ray Vaughan. Lonnie was an inductee of the Rockabilly Hall of Fame and the International Guitar Hall of Fame. More recently in 2000, he appeared as a guest artist on the album Franktown Blues, by the sons of blues legend Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup, providing guitar solos on "She's Got The Key" and "Jammin' For James". He continued to tour in both America and Europe and appeared at benefit concerts and special events. On Nov 15th 2008, he was a featured performer at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's thirteenth annual Music Masters Tribute Concert, soloing on "Wham!" in tribute to special guest, electric-guitar pioneer Les Paul. In 2009, it was reported that he "tore the roof off" his favorite Tennessee country roadhouse playing "Cincinnati Jail" with a borrowed guitar and on June 5th & 6th, 2010, he played at an invitation-only reunion concert with the surviving members of his original band, sadly this proved to be his final concert. By 2012, age and a lifetime of hard living had taken their toll on Lonnie, when guitarist Travis Wammack asked him to join him on a tour to be billed as "Double Mack Attack", sadly Lonnie had to decline, stating due to his physical limitations he could no longer play his Flying V at that level.


Prince
June 7th 1958 – April 21st 2016

Flamboyant musical icon, innovator, seven time Grammy Award winner, Prince, suddenly died at the age of 57. Prince died unexpectedly Thursday after he was found unresponsive in an elevator at his studio and home at
Paisley Park, Minnesota. Paramedics tried to perform CPR but tragically were unable to revive him and he was pronounced dead at 10:07 a.m., less than 30 minutes after sheriff's deputies responded to the medical call-out.

American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, and actor, Prince Rogers Nelson was born in Minneapolis and developed an interest in music as a young child, writing his first song called “Funk Machine” when he was seven years old. At the age of 10 he danced on stage with James Brown when his stepdad lifted him on to the stage with Brown and he danced until the bodyguard took him off. Then as a young teenager he formed his own band called Grand Central. After recording songs with his cousin's band 94 East, 19-year-old Prince recorded several unsuccessful demo tapes before releasing his debut album "For You" in 1978. This was followed by his self titled album, which went platinum in the US and silver in the UK. His next three records, "Dirty Mind" in 1980, "Controversy" in 1981, and "1999" in 1982, continued his success, showcasing Prince's trademark of prominently sexual lyrics and incorporation of elements of funk, dance, and rock music. In 1984, he began referring to his backup band as The Revolution and released "Purple Rain", which served as the soundtrack to his film debut of the same name. A prolific songwriter, Prince in the 1980s wrote songs for and produced work by many other acts, often under pseudonyms. He used pseudonyms to separate himself from the music, his own or that of others for which he had input during his career. These pseudonyms include: Jamie Starr and The Starr Company (for the songs he wrote for The Time and many other artists from 1981–1984); Joey Coco (for many unreleased Prince songs in the late 1980s, as well as songs written for Sheena Easton & Kenny Rogers); Paisley Park (occasionally used in the early 1990s for his production credits on songs, including those written for Martika and Kid Creole); Alexander Nevermind (for writing the 1984 song "Sugar Walls" by Sheena Easton); and Christopher (used for his song writing credit of "Manic Monday" for the Bangles). Also Prince's preference for his sexually charged kinky story songs earned him the nickname, His Royal Badness. He is also known as the "Purple One". His sound was as unique and transfixing as he, creating what became known as the Minneapolis sound... a funky blend of pop, synth and new wave. As well as his vocal, his songwriting and production skills, Prince was also renowned as a multi-instrumentalist; on his debut album, he is credited with having played 27 instruments; in fact he played nearly all the instruments on his first five albums. He sold over 100 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling artists of all time and he has won seven Grammy Awards, and has earned 30 nominations. Five of his singles have topped the charts and 14 other songs hit the Top 10, and he won an Oscar for the original song score to the classic film "Purple Rain". As a big fan of the American football team, the Minnesota Vikings, Prince wrote a fight song entitled "Purple and Gold" to inspire his home team when they played the New Orleans Saints in the 2010 NFC championship game. In 2015 addressing the unrest following the death of Freddie Gray while in police custody in Baltimore, Prince released the song "Baltimore". He performed at a benefit concert in the city and gave a portion of the proceeds to youth groups in Baltimore. He performed what could be his last concert in Atlanta to rave reviews on April 14th after having to cancel the gig on April 7th due to severe flu, but on his homeward journey his plane had to made an emergency landing for medical reasons. On Saturday, April 16, Prince hosted a dance party at his Paisley Park residence, to show everyone he was fine and doing well. He seemed great and showed off his new purple piano, as well as a new purple guitar, he breifly went on stage saying 'I'm here. I'm good,'and added "Just wait a few days before saying your prayers".

Merle Haggard
April 6th 1937 ~ April 6th 2016

One of the most successful singers in Country history, with 38 "number one" Country hits under his belt, Merle Haggard, has died at his ranch in California on his 79th birthday. The Country icon had been suffering badly with bouts of pneumonia over several years. He leaves behind 4 children by his first marrage to Leona Hobbs: Dana, Marty, Kelli, and Noel; 2 children by his fifth wife Theresa Ann Lane: Jenessa and Ben; and a son from a breif affair in 1968, Scott Haggard.
Merle Haggard
American singer-songwriter, guitarist, fiddler, and instrumentalist, Merle Ronald Haggard, born in Oildale, California, who, along with his band the Strangers helped create the Bakersfield sound, which is characterized by the twang of Fender Telecaster, the unique mix with the traditional country steel guitar sound and new vocal harmony styles. At the age of 12, his brother Lowell, gave him his used guitar and Merle learned to play alone, with the records he had at home, influenced by Bob Wills, Lefty Frizzell, and Hank Williams. Merle had a troubled childhood after the death of his father in 1945, and he was incarcerated several times in his youth. When he was 14, he ran away to Texas with his friend Bob Teague, they rode freight trains and hitchhiked throughout the state. When he returned the same year, he and his friend were arrested for robbery. He and Teague were released when the real robbers were found. Merle was later sent to the juvenile detention center, from which he and his friend escaped again to Modesto, California. His debut performance was with Teague in a Modesto bar named "Fun Center", being paid US$5, with free beer. But on their return to Bakersfield they were rearrested. Eventually Merle managed to turn his life around and launch a successful country music career, gaining popularity with his songs about the working class that occasionally contained themes contrary to the prevailing anti-Vietnam War subject matter of much popular music of the time. In 1966, he recorded "I'm a Lonesome Fugitive", which became his first No.1 single and in 1969, he released "Okie From Muskogee", with lyrics reflecting the singer's pride in being from Middle America where people are considered patriotic, do not smoke marijuana, take LSD, burn draft cards or challenge authority. Other hits included songs like "Someday We'll Look Back", "Grandma Harp", "Always Wanting You", "The Fightin' Side of Me", "Carolyn" and "The Roots of My Raising". Between the 60s and the 80s, Merle acheived an amazing 38, No.1 hits, on the US country charts, several of which also made the Billboard all-genre singles chart. During the 1970s, he became aligned with the growing outlaw country movement, and he continued to release successful albums through the 1990s and into the 2000s. He received many honors and awards for his music, including a Kennedy Center Honor in 2010, 3 Grammies in 1984, 1998, and 1999, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006, and a BMI Icon Award also in 2006. Merle was induction into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1977, the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame in 1997. Last year, Merle spoke with Broadway’s Electric Barnyard and revealed that he had “probably 300, 400 songs that I haven’t released that I’ve collected over the years”, “We call it ‘the archive,’ and we haven’t released anything from that,” Merle explained. “When I get unable to record or sing anymore or get killed or something, well, they’ll probably put it out”.

James Jamerson Junior
1957 ~ March 23rd 2016

A chameleon on the bass, James Jamerson Jr, the son of renowned Funk Brothers/Motown bassist James Jamerson has passed away at the age of 58. A cause of death has not been announced, though he had been ill for many years battling the spinal condition ankylosing spondylitis. Sadly, he leaves behind his three daughters and four grandchildren, his mother, Annie Jamerson; sister Dorene Penny Jamerson, and his brother Joey Jamerson.

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Keith Emerson
November 2nd 1944 ~ March 10th 2016

'Hendrix of the Hammond', yet classically trained pianist, Keith Emerson of the legendary Emerson, Lake And Palmer has died at the age of 71. After being trolled by fans on the internet he was "tormented with worry" that he wouldn’t be good enough for his latest tour, he tragically shot hihmself to death at his home in Santa Monica, USA. Sadly he leaves behind his long-time partner Mari Kawaguchi and his two sons, Aaron Ole Emerson and Damon Keith Emerson, from his former marriage to, Elinor.


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Sir George Martin
January 3rd 1926 ~ March 8th 2016

The redefining producer who guided the young Beatles, George Martin, has sadly died at his home in Wiltshire. He died peacefully in his sleep at the age of 90. He is survived by his wife of nearly fifty years, Judy Lockhart Smith and his four children; Alexis and Gregory Paul Martin, by his first wife Sheena Chisholm and Lucie and Giles Martin by Judy.

English record producer, arranger, composer, conductor, audio engineer and musician, George Henry Martin often referred to as the "Fifth Beatle", because of his extensive involvement on all of the Beatles' original albums was born in Highbury, London. Over his 60 plus year career he had 30 number-one hit singles in the United Kingdom and 23 number-one hits in the United States. In 1943, at seventeen, he joined the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy and became an aerial observer and a commissioned officer. From 1947 to 1950 he attended the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, studying piano and oboe. Following his graduation, he worked for the BBC's classical music department, then joined EMI in 1950 and produced comedy and novelty records in the early 1950s. His first hit for Parlophone was the "Mock Mozart" single by Peter Ustinov with Anthony Hopkins in 1952. Later he worked with Peter Sellers on two comedy LPs "The Best Of Sellers", and the 1957 "Songs for Swinging Sellers", a spoof on Frank Sinatra's LP "Songs for Swinging Lovers". Other comedians George worked with included Bernard Cribbins, Charlie Drake, Terry Scott, Bruce Forsyth, Michael Bentine, Dudley Moore, Flanders and Swann, Lance Percival, Joan Sims, Bill Oddie and both Jim Dale and the Vipers Skiffle Group. Martin's breakthrough as a producer came with the 'Beyond the Fringe' show cast album, which starred Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Alan Bennett and Jonathan Miller, and he also produced the accompanying soundtrack album for David Frost's satirical BBC TV show That Was the Week That Was in 1963. He had had only minor success with pop music, such as "Who Could Be Bluer" by Jerry Lordan, a No.1 hit with the Temperance Seven and singles with Shane Fenton and Matt Monro, but after a meeting with Brian Epstein on May 9th 1962 at the Abbey Road studios, George was impressed by Brian Epstein's enthusiasm and agreed to sign the unknown Beatles to a recording contract without having met them or seen them play live. The Beatles' first recording session with George was on September 4th, when they recorded "How Do You Do It", which George thought was a sure-fire hit even though Lennon and McCartney did not want to release it, not being one of their own compositions. George's more formal musical expertise helped fill the gaps between the Beatles' unrefined talent and the sound that distinguished them from other groups and eventually made them successful. Most of the Beatles' orchestral arrangements and instrumentation, as well as frequent keyboard parts on the early records, were written or performed by George in collaboration with the less musically experienced Beatles. He composed, arranged and produced film scores since the early 1960s, including the instrumental scores of the films A Hard Day's Night -1964, for which he won an Academy Awards Nomination, Ferry Cross the Mersey-1965, Yellow Submarine-1968 and Live and Let Die in 1973). Other notable movie scores include Crooks Anonymous-1962, The Family Way-1966, Pulp -1972 starring Michael Caine and Mickey Rooney, the Peter Sellers film The Optimists of Nine Elms-1973, and the John Schlesinger directed Honky Tonk Freeway-1981. He also composed the David Frost theme "By George", "Eary-Feary" the theme from the 1970 LWT horror series Tales of Unease, "Theme One" for BBC Radio 1, "Adagietto for Harmonica & Strings" for Tommy Reilly, and "Magic Carpet" for the Dakotas. He produced recordings for many other artists, such as Matt Monro, Cilla Black, Gerry & The Pacemakers, Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas, The Fourmost, David and Jonathan, and The Action, as well as The King's Singers, Gary Glitter, the band America, guitarists Jeff Beck and John Williams, duo Edwards Hand, Gary Brooker, Neil Sedaka, Ultravox, Kenny Rogers, UFO, Cheap Trick, Elton John, Celine Dion and Yoshiki Hayashi of X Japan. His s career spanned more than six decades of work in music, film, television and live performance. He held a number of senior executive roles at media companies and contributed to a wide range of charitable causes, including his work for the Prince's Trust and the Caribbean island of Montserrat. In recognition of his services to the music industry and popular culture, he was made a Knight Bachelor in 1996. On April 25th 2011 a 90-minute documentary feature film co-produced by the BBC Arena team, "Produced by George Martin", aired to critical acclaim for the first time in the UK. It combines rare archive footage and new interviews with, among others, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Jeff Beck, Cilla Black and Giles Martin and tells the life story of George Martin from schoolboy growing up in the Depression to legendary music producer.


Ross Hannaford
December 1st 1950 ~ March 8th 2016

The Salvador Dali of Australian rock, Ross Hannaford, guitarist with the ARIA Hall of Fame-inducted 1970s rock outfit Daddy Cool, has died at his home in Melbourne, after a brave battle with cancer. He was 65. Sadly Ross leaves behind his wife, Lorraine Austin, and daughter from his first marriage to Toni, Billi.

Australian rock guitarist Ross Andrew Hannaford also known as Hanna, was born in Newcastle, NSW, but moved with his family to Melbourne the following year, in 1951. In early 1965, he started a long collaboration with singer-songwriter Ross Wilson, which began as teenagers, with the R&B band The Pink Finks. This was followed by the two forming The Party Machine, and releasing a single "You've All Gotta Go". In 1970, inspired by Fank Zappa, they formed yet another band, the avant garde 'Sons of the Vegetal Mother' which eventually evolved into the band, Daddy Cool. After the release of their hugely successful debut single "Eagle Rock" which nailed down the No. 1 position on the sales chart for a then-record 10 weeks, and their debut LP Daddy Who? Daddy Cool, the band became one of the most popular and successful rock acts of the '70s, breaking all previous sales records for an Australian act. The band toured the U.S. six times and released a second hit album Sex, Dope, Rock'n'Roll: Teenage Heaven a year later. After the first split of Daddy Cool at the end of 1972, the two formed the short-lived Mighty Kong and they recorded one album, All I Wanna Do Is Rock, then split, reformed in 1974 until 1976. Next Ross did a considerable amount of session work and played in many bands. His group and recording credits include The Black Sorrows, Paul Madigan & The Humans, Ian Moss, Steve Hoy, Mark Gillespie, Billy T, Ram Band, Goanna and Relax with Max. In the 1990s he and his band Dianna Kiss had a long-standing residency at the famous Esplanade Hotel in St Kilda, Melbourne. In 2005 the original members of Daddy Cool reunited for a one-off performance at a Melbourne benefit concert in aid of the Asian Tsunami disaster, and this led to the 2006 reformation of the group and the recording of a new single and album and November 2007, they toured Australia with the Beach Boys & Christopher Cross. Ross was inducted into the ARIA Hall Of Fame in 2006 as one of the members of Daddy Cool. When APRA celebrated its 75th anniversary by publishing a list of the Top 30 Australian songs between 1926 - 2001, "Eagle Rock" came in at No. 2, beaten only by "Friday on My Mind" by The Easybeats’. "Eagle Rock" enjoyed another stint in the international spotlight with a prominent placement in the 2005 horror film Wolf Creek. In more recent years to the public's amazement and delight , Ross had also been a familiar figure on the streets of Melbourne, regularly enjoying busking in Melbourne's CBD and at the Camberwell Markets with indigenous singer-songwriter Bart Willoughby. The two recorded a live set while busking and he said he discovered he really loved the experience of performing and selling the record on the streets of Melbourne. Sadly he was diagnosed with spreading liver cancer in July 2015, but continued to perform through his illness until his final show at the Caravan Club in Oakleigh in December 2015. At this time he also released his first solo album titled 'Hanna'.

John Chilton
July 16th 1932 ~ February 25th 2016

One of Britain's greatest jazz stars, trumpeter John Chilton, the Grammy winning jazz writer who was also George Melly's musical partner for nearly four decades, has sadly died aged 83, following a brief illness. Sadly John had already lost his wife Teresa, but is survived by thier 3 children, Jenny, Martin and Barney, and grandchildren.

English jazz trumpeter and writer, John Chilton was born in London, but in WWII, he was evacuated to Northamptonshire, where he began playing the cornet. He switched to trumpet at 17 and after doing national service in the RAF, he formed his own jazz band, playing at Butlins in Skegness with a troupe that included comedian Dave Allen and recorded The Song of a Road, one of the radio ballads of folk singers Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger in the 1950s for the BBC. In the late 50s to mid 60s he worked in Bruce Turner's Jump Band, Alex Welsh's Big Band, Mike Daniels' Big Band. A movie of John and Bruce Turner's Jump Band's
exploits called 'Living Jazz' was made in 1961 by director Jack Gold. During the 1960s, John also worked with pop bands, including The Swinging Blue Jeans and The Escorts. In the late 1960s, he formed his own Swing Kings band which backed some leading American jazz musicians who toured Britain, including Buck Clayton, Ben Webster, Bill Coleman and Charlie Shavers. In January 1974 he formed is own band, John Chilton's Feetwarmers, who began accompanying British jazz singer and writer George Melly. Together they made records and toured the world for nearly 30 years including trips to America, Australia, China and New Zealand. In 1983 and 1984 they had their own BBC television series called Good Time George and they appeared on countless other TV shows, including Parkinson, Aspel, The Wheeltappers and Shunters Social Club, This is Your Life and Pebble Mill at One. John and his band, The Feetwarmers, were also the resident Christmas act at Ronnie Scott's club in Soho for more than 30 years. John is one of the few European writers to win a Grammy Award for his album notes on Bunny Berigan in 1983 and was runner-up for a further Grammy award in 2000. In that same year he won the British Jazz Award for 'Writer of the Year'. His books on Coleman Hawkins and Louis Jordan both won him the American Association for Recorded Sound Collections' Award for Historical Recorded Sound Research. The Jazz Rag described him as "one of the world's top jazz writers". For his books on Sidney Bechet and Louis Armstrong, he was given the freedom of New Orleans. In March 2007, Northway Books published his autobiography, Hot Jazz, Warm Feet. John, although he suffered from Parkinson's disease in his later years, continued to play trumpet with the clarinetist Wally Fawkes in London until his death.


Sonny James
May 1st 1928 ~ February 22nd 2016

"The Southern Gentleman" whose music went from Alabama to the moon, country singer Sonny James has sadly died in hospice care Monday in Nashville, Tennessee, at the age of 87. Sonny is survived by his beloved wife, Doris, who he had married in July of 1957.

American country singer-songwriter and multi-musician Sonny James was born James Hugh Loden in Hackleburg, Alabama. By the age of three he was
singing and playing a mandolin; it was in this early era he was nicknamed "Sonny Boy". In 1933 the family appeared on a radio audition which resulted in their being offered a regular Saturday slot on Muscle Shoals, Alabama radio station WMSD-AM. The singing Loden Family, turned professional were soon playing theatres, auditoriums and schoolhouses throughout the Southern United States. As the years passed they were billed as Sonny Loden and the Southerners. During the summer of 1950 Sonny worked with a band, as guitarist and singing on the Memphis, Tennessee radio station WHBQ, but that was interrupted when in September 1950 his Alabama Army National Guard unit was sent to fight in the Korean War, not returning home until the fall of 1951. Sonny was honorably discharged and moved to Nashville, Tennessee where with the help of Chet Atkins, he signed with Capitol Records and released his first studio record as Sonny James and because of his polite ways, he was soon tagged "The Southern Gentleman". While appearing on Louisiana Hayride he met musician Slim Whitman, who, seeing Sonny's performance on stage playing a fiddle and singing brought a strong crowd response, Whitman invited him to front for his new touring band. But Sonny disliked the club work and left after a few months. In late 1956 he released "Young Love", for which he would forever be remembered, also it was the first teenage country crossover single, topping both the US country and pop music charts in January 1957. He gained more exposure with an appearance on the popular Ed Sullivan Show and the Bob Hope Show. In 1962 he became a member of the Grand Ole Opry and from 1964 to 1972 he was a dominant force in country music. James and his Southern Gentlemen appeared on the major TV shows during that period including Ed Sullivan, Jimmy Dean, Andy Williams, Glen Campbell, Mike Douglas, Merv Griffin, The Joey Bishop Show, was a multi-time guest on Hee Haw, also on the Johnny Cash Show and made minor singing appearances in four motion pictures. In 1971 he made a cassette tape for the three-man Apollo 14 crew to listen to during their mission. Upon their return to Earth, the astronauts gave Mr. James an American flag that they had brought with them on their moon flight. Following his long streak of No.1 hits, he is also remembered for his 1975 No.6 song "A Little Bit South of Saskatoon" that was in the 1977 Paul Newman hockey comedy Slap Shot. Over his long career, Sonny had 72 country and pop charted releases from 1953 to 1983, including an unprecedented five-year streak of 16 straight Billboard No.1 singles among his 26 No.1 hits and 21 of his albums reached the country top ten from 1964 to 1976. In May 2007 Sonny, accompanied by his Southern Gentlemen, were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. In 1973 he also helped launch the solo career of Marie Osmond, producing and arranging her first three albums, including her smash hit, "Paper Roses". In the spring of 1984, Sonny and his wife since 1957, Doris, quietly retired to their home in Nashville, Tennessee. He went back to his birth town of Hackleburg during their first annual Neighbor Day Festival on April 20th 2002 and continued attending the festival every other year. During the April 25, 2009 festival, he recognized the 100th birthday of the town of Hackleburg on the main stage.


Jimmie Haskell
November 7th *1926 ~ February 4th 2016
Musical icon known throughout the world, Jimmie Haskell, winner of 3 Grammies, 3 Clio Awards, 2 Addy Awards, an Emmy, and 1 Cable Car Award, responsible for over 135 gold or platinum albums, has died at the age of 89. Sadly he leaves behind his family including his loving wife Barbara.

American composer, arranger, conductor and music producer, Jimmie Haskell was born Sheridan Pearlman in Brooklyn, New York, but moved to Los Angeles, CA when he was just nine years old. As a teen he was playing gigs in studios around Los Angeles and nightclubs on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood and played the accordion for a band called "The Bachelors", all the beginnings of his renowned musical career. It was at this time when Imperial Records invited him to do some arrangements for them, and he soon became the arranger of choice for Ricky Nelson. He went on to work with 100s of acts including The Grass Roots, Sheryl Crow, Steely Dan, Tina Turner, Barbara Streisand, Elvis, Blondie, The Bee Gees, Chicago, Bobbie Darren, Crosby Stills & Nash, Etta James, Billy Joel, B.B. King, Gladys Knight, Sheryl Crow, The Doobie Brothers, Jose Feliciano, Sam Cooke, Glen Campbell, Barry Manilow and Michael Jackson. He entered the motion picture soundtrack industry in 1960 as an uncredited orchestrator for Dimitri Tiomkin's The Alamo and composed his first score the following year 'Love in a Goldfish Bowl'. His composition The Silly Song became the theme song of American television's The Hollywood Squares. In addition to composing and arranging, he often acted as conductor, he has conducted and/or written music for dozens of symphonies and orchestras, including the Boston POPS, New York Symphony, LA Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic and the Puerto Rico Symphony. Jimmie is responsible for 135 gold or platinum albums, and composed music for well over 20 commercials, some 31 or more feature films, 32 TV movies and 445 TV episodes. He was the winner of 3 Clio Awards, 2 Addy Awards and 1 Cable Car Award, and awarded an Emmy for Outstanding Achievement in Music Composition for a Special (Dramatic Underscore) for 'See How She Runs' in 1978 as well as receiving two other nominations. He was also honored with Grammies for his arrangements of "Ode to Billie Joe", "Bridge Over Troubled Water" and "If You Leave Me Now".

*Jimmie Haskell's daughter, LA session singer Scottie Haskell, has emailed me that her Dad's birthdate is NOT 1936 as most internet sources have it, but it is actually 1926.

Maurice "Reese" White
December 19th 1941 ~ February 4th 2016

Maurice White, the founder and leader of Earth, Wind & Fire, whose genre-defying music made it one of the most successful bands of the 1970s, has died at the age of 74. Maurice who died in his sleep after a long brave battle with Parkinson's disease sadly leaves behind a close loving family including his siblings, Verdine and Freddie White., his wife and their two children.

American singer-songwriter, musician, record producer, arranger and bandleader, Maurice White, often refered to as Reese, was born in Memphis, Tennessee. In his teenage years, he moved to Chicago and found work as a session drummer for Chess Records. He played on the records of artists such as Etta James, Ramsey Lewis, Sonny Stitt, Muddy Waters, The Impressions, The Dells, Betty Everett, Sugar Pie DeSanto, Buddy Guy, and also played the drums on Fontella Bass's "Rescue Me" and Billy Stewart's "Summertime". In 1962, along with other studio musicians at Chess, he was a member of the Jazzmen which later became The Pharaohs. In 1969 Reese left the Trio and joined his two friends, Wade Flemons and Don Whitehead, to form a songwriting team who wrote songs for commercials in the Chicago area. The three friends got a recording contract with Capitol Records and called themselves The Salty Peppers. They had a moderate hit in the Midwest area with their single "La La Time", but their second single, "Uh Huh Yeah", was not as successful. Maurice then migrated from Chicago to Los Angeles, and altered the name of the band to Earth, Wind & Fire, the band's new name reflecting the elements in his astrological chart. He served as the band's main songwriter and record producer, and was co-lead singer along with Philip Bailey. Also Reece was responsible for incorporating the sound of the kalimba, also known as the African thumb piano, and of a horn section into the music of Earth, Wind & Fire. The band had many hits, including "Shining Star", "That's the Way of the World", "Devotion", "Reasons", "Sing a Song", "Can't Hide Love", "Getaway", "Fantasy", "Love's Holiday", "September", "Boogie Wonderland", "After the Love Has Gone", and "Let's Groove". Two Earth, Wind & Fire classic songs have been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame: "That’s the Way of the World" in 2004 and "Shining Star" in 2007. The band is also known as having been the first African-American act to sell out Madison Square Garden and to receive the MSG Gold Ticket Award. They performed in the movie, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and President Barack Obama invited Earth, Wind & Fire to perform at the White House for the first social event of the new administration. Sadly Maurice was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in the late 1980s, which led him to eventually stop touring with Earth, Wind & Fire in 1994. However, he remained very active in the band and retained executive control of EWF. As well as band commitments, in 1976, he, along with Charles Stepney formed a production company Kalimba Productions, thier first production was Deniece Williams' debut album, that same year. Reece went on to produce The Emotions, Barbra Streisand, Weather Report, Neil Diamond, The Urban Knight, James Ingram, Xpression and Brian Culbertson to mention a few. In 1985, Reese released a self titled solo album that included a cover of Ben E. King's "Stand by Me," featuring a guest appearance by jazz saxophonist Gerald Albright and the moderate hit "I Need You." White's version of "Stand by Me" went to be No. 6 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles chart. He also wrote songs for the movies 'Coming to America' and 'Undercover Brother'. He composed music for the television series, Life Is Wild and worked with Maurice Hines in 2006 to release the Broadway play "Hot Feet" for which he and Allee Willis wrote several new songs. Over his long career, Reese won seven Grammys, and was nominated for 21 Grammys in total. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame as a member of Earth, Wind & Fire, and was also individually inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Sir Terry Wogan
August 3rd 1938 ~ January 31st 2016
Much loved Irish-British radio and television broadcaster and presenter, who worked for the BBC for most of 60 year his career, has sadly died after a short brave battle with cancer at the age of 77. From "Wake Up With Wogan" to "The Eurovisiom Song Contest" to "Children In Need", a true national treasure, Terry sadly leaves behind a loving family including his wife Helen, their three children and five grandchildren. The couple also had a daughter Vanessa, who sadly died when only a few weeks old.

Sir Michael Terence "Terry" Wogan, KBE, DL was born in Limerick City, and educated at Crescent College, a Jesuit school, from the age of eight. At the age of 15, after his father was promoted at work, all the family moved to Dublin where he attended Belvedere College, participated in amateur dramatics and discovered a love of rock and roll. In his early twenties, after a few mundane jobs, Terry joined the national broadcaster of Ireland, RTÉ / Raidió Teilifís Éireann as a newsreader and announcer, before moving to the light entertainment department as a disc jockey and host of TV quiz and variety shows such as Jackpot, a top rated quiz show on RTÉ in the 1960s. He began working for BBC Radio, initially 'down the line' from London, first broadcasting on the Light Programme on Tuesday 27 September 1966. He presented the Tuesday edition of Late Night Extra for two years on BBC Radio 1, commuting weekly from Dublin to London. After covering Jimmy Young's mid-morning show throughout July in 1969, he was offered a regular afternoon slot between 3 and 5. Then in April 1972, he took over the breakfast show on BBC Radio 2 and enjoyed unprecedented popularity, achieving audiences of up to 7.9 million. In 1971 and from 1974 until 1977, Terry provided the BBC's radio commentary for the Eurovision Song Contest. He became better known for his television commentary, which he handled first in 1973 and then again in 1978. From 1980 until 2008, he provided the BBC's television commentary every year and became known for his sardonic and highly cynical comments. Back to 1978, he released a vocal version of the song "The Floral Dance", this was by popular request from his radio listeners who enjoyed hearing him sing over the instrumental hit by the Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band. His version reached No. 21 in the UK Singles Chart. In December 1984, he left his breakfast show to pursue a full-time career in television. Terry's first foray into TV interviewing, and to British television, was in 1972 on Lunchtime with 'Wogan' on ITV. Later, 'What's on Wogan?' ran for one series in 1980 on BBC1, primarily on early Saturday evenings. In 1980, the BBC's charity appeal for children was first broadcast as a telethon called Children in Need, with Wogan presenting alongside Sue Lawley and Esther Rantzen. He campaigned extensively for the charity and often involved himself via auctions on his radio show, or more directly by taking part in well-publicised sponsored activities. Terry presented the show every year before retiring after helping to raise a record sum of £46,100,000 in 2014. In 1981 he hosted the chat show, 'Saturday Live' and soon after he was given his own chat show, 'Wogan'. Also in 1981 Terry set the world record for the longest successful golf putt ever televised, 33 yards at the Gleneagles golf course in a pro-celebrity BBC TV programme. He went on to host and/or appear on dozens of TV and radio shows, from Blankety Blank to Come Dancing, more recently from 2010 to 2015 he presented Weekend Wogan, a two-hour Sunday morning show on BBC Radio 2. Among his many honors and awards over his long career, Terry was appointed an Honorary Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1997 and elevated to an Honorary Knight Commander of the same order (KBE) in the Queen's Birthday Honours in 2005. After asserting his right to British citizenship (acquiring dual British and Irish citizenship) that year, the knighthood was made substantive on October 11th 2005, allowing him to use the style "Sir". Then on May 29th 2007, he was also appointed a Deputy Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire. Also that same year in his childhood home City of Limerick on 15 June 15th he was honoured with the Freedom of the City at a ceremony in Limerick's Civic Hall. Before he retired from his BBC Radio 2 weekday breakfast programme "Wake Up to Wogan" in 2009, it had eight million regular listeners, making him the most listened-to radio broadcaster in Europe.

Paul Kantner
March 17th 1941 ~ January 28th 2016

American guitarist, singer-songwriter, co-founder and driving force of the legendary psychedelic rock band, Jefferson Airplane, Paul has died of multiple organ failure and septic shock, after he had suffered a heart attack a few days before. He was 74 years old. Paul sadly leaves behind
his three children; sons Gareth and Alexander, and daughter China, a former MTV presenter.

American guitarist, singer-songwriter, Paul Kantner was born in San Francisco, California.co-founder and driving force of the legendary psychedelic rock band, Jefferson Airplane, born in San Francisco, California, and as a teenager he went into total revolt against all forms of authority, and he decided to become a protest folk singer in the manner of his musical hero, Pete Seeger. During the summer of 1965, singer Marty Balin saw Paul perform at the Drinking Gourd, a folk club, and invited him to co-found a new band, Jefferson Airplane and he wrote many of the Airplane's early songs, including the chart hits "The Ballad of You and Me and Pooneil", "Watch Her Ride", and "Crown of Creation", and, with Balin, co-wrote "Today" and "Volunteers". The "classic" line-up of Jefferson Airplane remained stable from 1967 to 1972, and consisted of Paul, Marty Balin, Jack Casady, Spencer Dryden, Jorma Kaukonen and Grace Slick. The band advocated sex, psychedelic drugs, rebellion and a communal lifestyle, operating out of an eccentric house near Haight-Ashbury. The band quickly attracted a local following and when fledgling promoter Bill Graham opened his legendary Fillmore Auditorium, Jefferson Airplane served as the first headliner. Early hit White Rabbit combined the story of Alice In Wonderland with a drug trip; but later songs adopted the political stance of the hippie movement, with 1969's We Can Be Together declaring: "We are obscene, lawless, hideous, dangerous, dirty, violent and young... but we should be together". The band scored five gold albums in the US, including 1967's Surrealistic Pillow and 1968's Crown of Creation and performed at both the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 and the Woodstock Festival in 1969. After the Rolling Stones' Altamont Festival, where the Hells Angels, who had been hired as security, killed a spectator and beat Balin unconscious, the group began to fragment, with Paul releasing a well-received solo album, Blows Against the Empire, then he and Slick with the Planet Earth Rock and Roll Orchestra released two follow-up albums: Sunfighter, in 1971 to celebrate China's birth, and 1973's Baron von Tollbooth & The Chrome Nun, titled after the nicknames David Crosby had given to the couple. In 1974, Paul along with Balin and Slick, formed Jefferson Starship. In October 1980, Paul was taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in serious condition from a cerebral hemorrha and beat considerable odds with a full recovery without surgery. Jefferson Starship continued to have success until the 1980s. In 1984, Paul, the last founding member of Jefferson Airplane remaining, left Jefferson Starship, complaining that the band had become too commercial and strayed too far from its counterculture roots and he rejoined with Balin and Jack Casady to form the KBC Band, releasing their only album, KBC Band, which included Paul's hit, "America". In 1991 he and Balin reformed Jefferson Starship and Paul continued to tour and record with the band through 2015. Jefferson Starship was primarily a Paul Kantner solo band, with various former Airplane and Starship members dropping in for tours or specific shows. In 1996 he and his Jefferson Airplane bandmates were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and have been honored with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, which the band will recieve in February, 2016. On March 25th 2015, it was reported that Paul had suffered a heart-attack, but he fought back and returned to the group later on in the year, in time to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Jefferson Airplane with special shows that also featured Grateful Dead tribute group Jazz is Dead.

Jimmy Bain
December 19th 1947 ~ January 24th 2016

Scottish bass player, singer-songwriter, and charity worker, Jimmy Bain, known for his work with Rainbow, DIO, and many other super stars and super-groups, has tragically and unexpectedly died away while on a tour in America. He was 68 years old. The full details surrounding Jimmy's death are not yet known.

Scottish bassist and singer-songwriter, James Stewart Bain, was born in Newtonmore, Highland, in Scotland. He played in several local bands as a young teen before joining the band Harlot in 1974 and hitting the London music scene. Jimmy
was asked to join Rainbow after Ritchie Blackmore had watched him performing at The Marquee in London. He recorded the studio album 'Rising' with them and played on their following world tour. While on the tour, he played on Rainbow's first live album, 'On Stage'; but in January 77, Jimmy was sacked from the band. He then toured Europe with John Cale. In the summer of 1978, he formed the band Wild Horses, releasing two albums 'Wild Horses' in 1980 and 'Stand Your Ground' in 1981. Jimmy then worked with the former Family main-man Roger Chapman, Roy Harper, Gary Moore, Kate Bush and co-wrote and performed with his close friend Phil Lynott for Phil's two solo albums, 'Solo in Soho' and 'The Philip Lynott Album'. He was also secretly brought in by the German hard rockers Scorpions to provide bass on their 1984 album 'Love at First Sting'. In 1983 he performed on Gary Moore's 'Dirty Fingers' album and that same year, Jimmy linked up again with ex-Rainbow vocalist Ronnie James Dio for the band Dio. A central figure within Dio the band, Jimmy co-wrote some of the most successful heavy metal songs of the eighties, such as "Rainbow in the Dark", and "Holy Diver", on their first album Holy Diver in 1983. He co-wrote several other songs for their albums, 'The Last in Line' in 1984, 'Sacred Heart' in 1985, Intermission in 1986, Dream Evil in '87 and Killing the Dragon in 2002. In the mid-1980s, Jimmy founded Hear 'n Aid, a foundation in which he could involve the Rock community to help eliminate world hunger. He also co-wrote the song, "Stars," which became the Heavy Rock world's answer to, "We Are The World". In autumn 1989, Jimmy formed a band with vocalist Mandy Lion called World War III and his solo project The Key utilised a far more melodic and commercial approach. In year 2000 he played on Dio's albums Magica and Killing the Dragon. In 2005, he joined forces with Dio drummer, Vinny Appice, for two projects, The Hollywood All Starz and 3 Legged Dogg. Later Jimmy toured with the supergroups, Hollywood Allstarz, and then 'Last in Line' in 2013. At the time of his death, Jimmy was performing with Last in Line on the Def Leppard Cruise tour, along with Def Leppard and ex-Poison guitarist Richie Kotzen and last performed in Miami, Florida on January 20th 2016.

Glenn Frey
November 6th 1948 ~ January 18th 2016
Guitarist, singer and songwriter, Glenn Frey, co-founded The Eagles and co-writer of Hotel California has died from complications arising from rheumatoid arthritis, colitis and pneumonia while recovering from intestinal surgery; he was 67 years old. Glenn sadly leaves behind his wife Cindy Millican, their daughter Taylor and their two sons, Deacon and Otis.

American singer, songwriter, producer and actor, Glenn Lewis Frey was born in Detroit, Michigan. He studied piano from aged 5, but later switched to guitar and became part of the mid-1960s Detroit rock scene. One of his earliest bands was called the Subterraneans, named after Jack Kerouac's novel, then after graduating from high school in 1966, he played for a while with the local band The Four of Us, before In 1967 he formed the Mushrooms after which he put together another band called Heavy Metal Kids. His first professional recording experience, at age 19, was performing acoustic guitar and background vocals on Seger's single, "Ramblin' Gamblin' Man" in 1968. In 1969 Glenn moved to Los Angelese where he debuted as a recorded songwriter while fronting the duo Longbranch Pennywhistle, with JD Souther. Glenn wrote the songs "Rebecca" and "Run, Boy, Run" and also co-wrote "Bring Back Funky Women" with JD for their self-titled album. The following year he met drummer Don Henley and when Linda Ronstadt needed a backup band for a gig, she hired Glenn, Don, Randy Meisner and Bernie Leadon after which Glenn and Don joined her band for for her 1971 summer tour. Later that year , Glen, Don, Randy and Bernie formed the Eagles, with Frey playing guitar, piano and keyboards and Don played drums. (Joe Walsh replaced Bernie in 1975, and Timothy B. Schmit replaced Randy in 1977). The band went on to become one of the world's best-selling groups of all time. Glenn wrote or co-wrote, often with Don, many of the group's songs, and sang the lead vocals on a number of Eagles hits including "Take It Easy", "Lyin' Eyes", "Peaceful Easy Feeling", "Already Gone", "Tequila Sunrise", "New Kid in Town", "Already Gone", "How Long" and "Heartache Tonight". After the break-up of the Eagles in 1980, Glenn embarked on a successful solo career. He released his debut album, No Fun Aloud, in 1982 and went on to record Top 40 hits "The One You Love", "Smuggler's Blues", "Sexy Girl", "The Heat Is On", "You Belong to the City", "True Love", "Livin' Right", and "Soul Searchin'". The Eagles reunited in 1994, releasing a new album, Hell Freezes Over and a tour of the same name followed. This was followed by the album "Long Road Out of Eden" accompanied by a tour lasting nearly 3 years. As a TV actor, he guest starred on Miami Vice in the first season episode "Smuggler's Blues", inspired by his hit song of the same name, and had a starring role in the "Dead Dog Arc" of Wiseguy. He guest starred on Nash Bridges as a policeman and appeared on HBO's Arli$$. He also appeared in the films Let's Get Harry and Jerry Maguire. Also in the late 1990s, he founded a record company, Mission Records, with attorney Peter Lopez and in 2012, he released his first solo album in 20 years, After Hours, featuring covers of pop standards from the 1940s to the 1960s. As a member of the Eagles, Glenn won six Grammy Awards, and five American Music Awards. Also along with The Eagles he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.


Dale "Buffin" Griffin
October 24th 1948 ~ January 17th 2016

Dale Griffin, drummer and founding member of 1970s rock band Mott the Hoople, producer on numerous BBC Radio 1 John Peel sessions has sadly died after a long, brave fight with the cruel disease Alzheimer; he was 67 years of age. Sadly Dale leaves behind many dear friends and his partner, a former schoolfriend, Jean Smith.
Dale Griffin
English drummer Terence Dale "Buffin" Griffin was born in Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire, were he attended Ross-on-Wye Grammar School, with fellow musician, bassist Overend Watts, and the pair decided to play together. Dale renamed himself Sniffin’ Griff Griffin, but Overland changed it to Snigger Buffin, and the name Buffin suck with him throughout his career. He was also part of the Charles Kingsley Creation and was involved with the early days of Rockfield Studios. As a member of the Doc Thomas Group, Dale along with Watts and guitarist Mick Ralphs, had success in Italy. In 1968 the three musicians were joined by the organist Verden Allen and became the Shakedown Sound and then the Silence, before vocalist Ian Hunter joined them and suggested a change of name to Mott The Hoople. The band's debut album, in 1969, 'Mott the Hoople', recorded in only a week, was a cult success. But the band didn't find international success until David Bowie, a fan of the band, penned "All the Young Dudes" for them, it became their biggest hit on both sides of the Atlantic. They had further hits with “All The Way From Memphis” and “Roll Away The Stone”, and Dale's
1974 produced album, Mott The Hoople – Live. In 1974, Mott the Hoople toured America with Ariel Bender playing lead guitar and were primarily supported on the tour by the band Queen. This tour later provided the inspiration for Queen's 1975 single "Now I'm Here", which contains the lyrics "Down in the city, just Hoople and me". In one of Bender's earliest performances with Hoople, they played the Masonic Temple in Detroit on October 12th 1973 with a young Aerosmith opening the show. Not long after releasing their album 'The Hoople' in 1974, Hunter and Ronson left the group to form a duo. Dale and Overland developed a new line-up calling it "Mott". Mott released two albums, Drive On in 1975 and Shouting and Pointing in 1976, but because of a changing music scene they disbanded in 1980. Next, Dale and Watts formed Grimtone Productions and they produced the hit single, “Is Vic There?” for Department S in 1981, before Dale joined the BBC and produced numerous sessions, often for John Peel, with acts including Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, Pulp, the Smashing Pumpkins, Carcass and Nirvana. Dale also took a keen interest in Mott’s back catalogue, arranging the issue of rarities and a box set. He wanted to play at their three 40th anniversary reunion concerts in 2009 but because, sadly, he was showing symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, he was confined to the encores.

Pete Huttlinger
June 22nd 1961 ~ January 15th 2016
Peter Huttlinger, one of the most awe-inspiring acoustic guitar players in the world has died from complications after a stroke and a life long brave battle with heart disease; he was 54 years old. Sadly he leaves behind his loving wife Erin Morris Huttlinger and stepchildren Sean Della Croce and James Della Croce;

American guitar virtuoso, Peter Huttlinger was born in Washington, D.C; as a boy he learned to play banjo, before he fell in love with the guitar. After a small inheritance he paid his way through college, graduating from the prestigious Berklee College of Music 1984. He toured, recorded and performed on television with John Denver from 1994 until John’s death in 1997. He also performed around the world with such artists as and John Oates, and he appears on recordings by Denver, LeAnn Rimes, Hall & Oates., Faith Hill, Jimmy Buffett and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra, among many others and performed on numerous Grammy-winning and Grammy-nominated projects. As a solo artist, he released more than 15 albums and he performed across the U.S. and Europe; he performed everywhere from coffee shops to Carnegie Hall to Eric Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival in 2004, 2007, and 2010. In 2000, Pete won the National Fingerstyle Guitar Championship at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas. His performances have been used in several national TV series, including the PBS Nature special “Let This Be A Voice” and he created the theme song for ESPN’s Flyfishing America, a program on which he made guest appearances. In November 2010, Pete had a massive stroke that tragically left him unable to speak and paralyzed his right side. To the amazement of everybody, he bravely fought back and gradually taught himself to play his guitars again and regained his mobility. But just a few months after his battle, Pete, who was born with a congenital heart defect, went into end-stage heart failure, and once again he fought his way back to his guitars and his music and despite his horrendous health problems Pete continued to work until his death. As well as his recording and performing, this spurred him to begin yet another career as a public speaker, presenting a speech called "Don't Just Live; Live Well" to groups around the country. Also he and his wife and manager, Erin Morris, chronicled his ordeal and his fight to recovery in their 2015 memoir, "Joined at the Heart: A Story of Love, Guitars, Resilience and Marigolds". In 2013 he released the long-awaited McGuire's Landing Project during a house concert on his birthday in Baltimore, Maryland. Pete's last album, a collaboration with Mollie Weaver called "Parnassus," came out in 2015 and his final musical performance was in Atlanta on January 9th 2016, just two days before his final stroke.


David Bowie
January 8th 1947 ~ January 10th 2015

Musical genius, master of re-invention, rock icon David Bowie has died just two days after his birthday, at the age of 69. David died peacefully surrounded by his family after a courageous battle with cancer, whilst also fighting back from six heart attacks over the last eighteen months. Sadly, he leaves behind a loving family including his wife Iman, his son Duncan and daughter Alexandria.



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