Posts Tagged ‘musicians’

Annie Ross, 1930 — 2020

July 29, 2020

Jazz singer Annie Ross died last week at the age of 89. In 1952, as a member of vocal trio Lambert, Hendricks & Ross, she set words to saxophonist Wardell Gray’s composition “Twisted” and performed it in a classic recording. The National Endowment for the Arts named her an NEA Jazz Master in 2010.

More:

“Annie Ross, mainstay of ‘the greatest jazz vocal group that ever was,’ dies at 89,” Matt Schudel, Washington Post

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Dick Dale, 1937 – 2019

March 20, 2019

Surf Guitar king Dick Dale died last Saturday at the age of 81. A cancer survivor, he continued to tour until his death in order to pay his medical bills.

More:

“Dick Dale, ‘King of the Surf Guitar,’ dead at 81,” Vanessa Franko, Orange County Register

“Dick Dale, godfather of surf guitar, dies aged 81,” Laura Snapes, The Guardian

“Dick Dale: ‘King of Surf Rock’ guitarist dies aged 81,” Mark Savage, BBC

“Dick Dale, the Inventor of Surf Rock, Was a Lebanese-American Kid from Boston,” Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker

 

Video: “Miserlou,” by Dick Dale & His Del-Tones, an adaptation of an Eastern Mediterranean tune (hear the original 1927 recording here).

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Neil Young’s Paganism

July 12, 2018

Neil Young, interviewed by Esquire‘s Cal Fussman. Illustrated by Joe McKendry, animated by Jennifer Yoo, and directed by Patrick Smith for Blank on Blank. Audio Producer: Amy Drozdowska.

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Antoine ‘Fats’ Domino Jr., 1928 – 2017

October 25, 2017

Antoine “Fats” Domino Jr., the singer, pianist and songwriter who was New Orleans’ ambassador to Rock n’ Roll, died on Tuesday at the age of 89. He brought a boogie-woogie, R&B sensibility to the world of teen tunes.

More:

“Fats Domino, boogie-woogie pianist who helped launch rock-and-roll, dies at 89,” Terence McArdle, Washington Post

“Fats Domino, piano-playing prodigy and rock and roll legend, dies at 89” John Pope, Times-Picayune

“Fats Domino, Architect Of Rock And Roll, Dead At 89,” Gwen Thompkins, NPR

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Tom Petty, 1950 — 2017

October 4, 2017

“Free Fallin,'” written by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne, 1989. Video directed by Julien Temple.

More:

“Tom Petty, a Mainstay of Rock With the Heartbreakers, Dies at 66,” Jon Pareles, New York Times

“An Appreciation of Tom Petty: Rock’s Superstar Everyman,” Chris Willman, Variety

“Free Falling with Tom Petty,” Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker

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Leon Russell, 1942 – 2016

November 17, 2016

Leon Russell, 1942 – 2016

Musician and songwriter Leon Russell died last Sunday. He was 74.

More:

“Leon Russell, Hit Maker and Musicians’ Musician, Dies at 74,” Jon Pareles, New York Times

“Leon Russell, Renowned Songwriter and Musician, Dead at 74,” Daniel Kreps, Rolling Stone

“Leon Russell, musician and hit songwriter, dies at 74,” Terence McArdle Washington Post

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Zappa

October 30, 2016

Composer and musician Frank Zappa, interviewed by Howard Smith on June 6, 1971. Mr. Zappa was on tour with the Mothers of Invention promoting their album Chunga’s Revenge and the film 200 Motels.

Animated by Patrick Smith for Blank on Blank (PBS Digital). Colorist:Jennifer Yoo. Audio Producer: Amy Drozdowska.

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Scotty Moore, 1931 – 2016

June 30, 2016

Scotty Moore, 1931 -- 2016

Guitarist Scotty Moore died Tuesday at the age of 84. In 1955, at tiny Sun Studio in Memphis, Mr. Moore played his Gibson ES-295 through an EchoSonic amp and, along with bass player Bill Black, backed up young Elvis Presley on an uptempo version of Junior Parker‘s song “Mystery Train.” It was the first Rock n’ Roll record many people ever heard.

You can hear the key role Scotty Moore’s finger-picked guitar played in propelling the tune on the Elvis recording and on the version he recorded in 1964 without a lead vocal:

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Ralph Stanley, 1927 – 2016

June 26, 2016

“Stairway to Heaven” (no, not that one), written by Bill J. Grant and Ralph Stanley, recorded by Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys.

More:

“Ralph Stanley, Whose Mountain Music Gave Rise to Bluegrass, Dies at 89,” Bill Friskics-Warren, New York Times

“Bluegrass great Ralph Stanley was one of our last links to an old America,” Geoffrey Himes, Washington Post

“Ralph Stanley’s Inimitable Voice,” David Cantwell, The New Yorker

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Guy Clark, 1941– 2016

May 18, 2016

Guy Clark, 1941-- 2016

Influential Texas-born singer, songwriter, and luthier Guy Clark died in Nashville Tuesday at the age of 74. A wonderful performer, his songs were big hits for others, notably Jerry Jeff Walker, Jimmy Buffett, Lyle Lovett, Ricky Skaggs, Steve Wariner, and Rodney Crowell.

More:

“Guy Clark dead at 74,” Peter Cooper, The Tennessean

“Guy Clark, a King of the Texas Troubadours, Is Dead at 74,” Bill Friskics-Warren, New York Times

“Legendary Texas songwriter Guy Clark, 74, dies,” Roberto Villalpando, Austin America-Statesman

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