Musical Birthdays & Deaths by Month
Pat Boone 1934 – Singer/songwriter/actor who was a successful pop singer during the 1950’s and early 1960’s. Many of Boone’s hit singles were covers of hits from black R&B artists. These included: “Ain’t That a Shame” by Fats Domino; “Tutti Frutti” and “Long Tall Sally” by Little Richard;”At My Front Door (Crazy Little Mama)” by the El Dorados; and the blues ballads “I Almost Lost My Mind” by Ivory Joe Hunter, “I’ll be Home” by The Flamingos and “Don’t Forbid Me” by Charles Singleton. In 1997, Boone released In a Metal Mood: No More Mr. Nice Guy, a collection of heavy metal covers. To promote the album, he appeared at the American Music Awards in black leather.
Ronnie Wood 1947 – Guitarist/songwriter who is best known as a former member of the Jeff Beck Group, Faces, and a member of the Rolling Stones since 1975. Along with vocalist Rod Stewart, Wood did several tours with Beck, and recorded two albums: Truth in 1968 and Beck-Ola in 1969. He co-wrote many of the Faces songs, including “Stay With Me” and “Ooh La La”. He also played on bandmate Stewart’s first few solo albums, and is co-writer of the Rod Stewart songs “Gasoline Alley” and “Every Picture Tells a Story”, as well as several songs on Never a Dull Moment. In December 1973, Wood collaborated with Mick Jagger on the song “It’s Only Rock’n Roll (But I Like It)”. Following Mick Taylor’s departure from the Rolling Stones in December 1974, Wood participated in the band’s March 1975 recording sessions for their forthcoming album Black and Blue.Although still a member of the Faces, he toured North America with the Rolling Stones in 1975; the Faces broke up in December of that year, and Wood was officially declared a member of the Rolling Stones in February 1976.
John Ellis 1952 – Guitarist/songwriter and and a founding member of the punk rock band The Vibrators in 1974. The Vibrators released two albums with Ellis and toured extensively. Ellis left the Vibrators in 1978 to form the short-lived group Rapid Eye Movement. In 1980 he toured with Peter Gabriel on his “Tour Of China 1984”, and he appears on the album Peter Gabriel 4. Between late 1990 and 2000, Ellis was a member of the punk rock band The Stranglers, starting with the album Stranglers In the Night.
Michael Landau 1958 – is a prolific session musician and guitarist who has played on a large number of albums since the early 1980’s with artists as varied as Joni Mitchell, Seal, Michael Jackson, James Taylor, Helen Watson, Richard Marx, Steve Perry, Pink Floydand Miles Davis.
Alan Wilder 1959 – Synthesizers/musician formerly of Depeche Mode, in which his role as a musician and producer was pivotal. Wilder wrote a handful of songs for Depeche Mode, including “The Great Outdoors” (the B-Side to “Get the Balance Right”), “Two Minute Warning” and “The Landscape Is Changing” (and a B-Side, “Fools”) from the album Construction Time Again,and “If You Want” (and a B-Side, “In Your Memory”) from the album Some Great Reward.
Simon Gallup 1960 – Bassist of the post-punk band The Cure, he also played keyboards on the songs “At Night”, “A Forest”, “A Strange Day” and “Pornography”.
Alanis Morissette 1974 – Singer/songwriter/guitarist whose first international album was the rock-influenced Jagged Little Pill, released in 1995 which has sold more than 33 million units globally. An influential Los Angeles modern rock radio station, began playing “You Oughta Know”, the album’s first single and it instantly garnered attention for its scathing, explicit lyrics, and a subsequent music video went into heavy rotation on MTV and MuchMusic. “All I Really Want” and “Hand In My Pocket” followed, but the fourth U.S. single, “Ironic”, became Morissette’s biggest hit.
David Ruffin 1991 (b.1941) – R & B-soul singer most famous for his work as one of the lead singers of the Temptations from 1964 to 1968 (or the group’s “Classic Five” period as it was later known). He was the lead voice on such famous songs as “My Girl” and “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg.” Known for his unique raspy and anguished tenor vocals, Ruffin was ranked as one of the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time by Rolling Stone magazine in 2008.
Jimmy Jones 1937 (d.2012) – Singer/songwriter who moved to New York while a teenager and was best known for his 1960 R&B smash, ‘Handy Man,’ Jones sang in a smooth yet soulful falsetto modeled on the likes of Clyde McPhatter and Sam Cooke.”
Charlie Watts 1941 – Drummer best known as a member of the Rolling Stones and is also the leader of a jazz band. In 1989, the Rolling Stones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In the July 2006 issue of Modern Drummer magazine, Watts was voted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame along with Ringo Starr, Keith Moon, Steve Gadd, Buddy Rich, and other highly esteemed drummers.
William Guest 1941 – R&B/soul singer, best known as a member of Gladys Knight & the Pips. He was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996.
Marvin Hamlisch 1944 (d.2012) – Composer/conductor who was was one of only eleven EGOTs – those who have been awarded an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. He was also one of only two people to have won those four prizes and a Pulitzer Prize (the other being Richard Rodgers). Hamlisch also won two Golden Globes. Some of his best work would be “The Entertainer” (Theme for The Sting) which hit #1, “The Way We Were”, “Nobody Does It Better” for The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) and many others.
Steve Brookins 1951 – Drummer/percussionist with .38 Special from 1974-1987
Pete Farndon 1952 (d.1983) – Bassist and founding member of the rock band The Pretenders. In addition to playing bass with the group, Farndon sang backup vocals and co-wrote two of the group’s songs (“The Wait” and “Space Invader”), before being dismissed from the group in June of 1982.
Michael Steele 1955 – Bassist/singer/songwriter who was a member of The Bangles and The Runaways, along with other bands. She achieved popular success and fame with the 1986 release of Different Light and its hit singles “Manic Monday” (#2) and “Walk Like An Egyptian” (#1) in which she sang lead vocals on the second verse.
Junior Brathwaite 1999 (b.1949) – was a reggae musician from Kingston, Jamaica, the youngest member of the vocal group, The Wailing Wailers. The Wailing Wailers was a vocal group Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer started in 1963, together with Braithwaite, when ska music had become popular in Jamaica. Braithwaite was with The Wailers for eight months and sang lead on such songs as, “Habits”, “Straight and Narrow Way”, “Don’t Ever Leave Me”, and “It Hurts To Be Alone”.
Vince Welnick 2006 (b.1951) – Keyboardist best known for playing with the band The Tubes during the 1970’s and 1980’s and with the Grateful Dead in the 1990’s. Videos for rock classics “Talk To Ya Later” and “She’s A Beauty” played in heavy rotation on MTV for years in the mid-1980s. While playing in the Tubes, he also played and recorded with Todd Rundgren.
Bo Diddley 2008 (b.1928) – Guitarist/singer/songwriter who was also a rock & roll pioneer. He was also known as The Originator because of his key role in the transition from the blues to rock, influencing a host of acts, including Buddy Holly, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, The Velvet Underground, The Who, The Yardbirds, Eric Clapton, Elvis Presley, and The Beatles, among others. He had hits with, “Who Do You Love?”, “I’m A Man”, “Bo Diddley”, “Pretty Thing”, “Say Man”, and “You Can’t Judge a Book by the Cover”
Boots Randolph 1927 (d.2007) – Sax player best known for his 1963 saxophone hit “Yakety Sax” (Benny Hill’s signature tune). Randolph was a major part of the “Nashville Sound” for most of his professional career. He also played on Roy Orbison’s 1963 hit, “Mean Woman Blues.”He was also featured on “Little Queenie” by REO Speedwagon, “Java” by Al Hirt, “Turn On Your Love Light” by Jerry Lee Lewis, and “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” by Brenda Lee.
Ian Hunter 1939 – Singer/songwriter who is best known as the lead singer of the English rock band Mott the Hoople from its inception in 1969 to its dissolution in 1974, and at the time of its 2009 reunion. They had success with songs such as “Roll Away The Stone”, “Golden Age Of Rock´n´Roll”, “Honaloochie Boogie”, “All The Way From Memphis”, “Saturday Gigs”, and especially “All The Young Dudes”.Also had a solo career and often worked in collaboration with Mick Ronson. His best-known solo records are “Once Bitten, Twice Shy”, later covered by Great White, and “Cleveland Rocks,” a cover version of which became the theme song for the American TV series The Drew Carey Show.
Curtis Mayfield 1942 (d.1999) – R&B, and funk singer/songwriter/record producer who is best known for his anthemic music with The Impressions and for composing the soundtrack to the blaxploitation film Super Fly. The Impressions reached the height of their popularity in the mid-to-late-’60’s with a string of Mayfield compositions that included “Keep on Pushing,” “People Get Ready”, “It’s All Right”, the uptempo “Talking about My Baby”, “Woman’s Got Soul”, “Choice of Colors,”, “Fool For You,” “This is My Country” and “Check Out Your Mind.”
Michael Clarke 1946 (d.1993) – was best known as the drummer for the 1960’s rock group The Byrds from 1964 to 1967. According to lead guitarist Roger McGuinn’s web site, Clarke was hired by McGuinn and Gene Clark (no relation) for his resemblance to Rolling Stones’ guitarist Brian Jones. Clarke’s strength as a drummer is considered to be illustrated by his jazz-oriented playing on The Byrds’ “Eight Miles High”,on the Fifth Dimension album.
Eddie Holman 1946 – Singer who is best known for his 1970 hit song “Hey There Lonely Girl”. While still in college, he recorded his first hit record, “This Can’t Be True” (1965). Other hits began to follow: “Am I A Loser From The Start” (1966), “I Love You” (1969), “Don’t Stop Now” (1970), and “Cathy Called” (1970).
Dave Alexander 1947 (d.1975) – Bassist/songwriter best known as the original bassist for influential protopunk band The Stooges. He is often credited by vocalist Iggy Pop and guitarist Ron Asheton in interviews with being the primary composer of the music for the Stooges songs “We Will Fall”, “Little Doll” (both on The Stooges), “Dirt” and “1970” (Fun House).
Mickey Finn 1947 (d.2003) – was the percussionist and sideman to Marc Bolan in his band Tyrannosaurus Rex (on one album, A Beard of Stars), and later, the 1970s glam rock group, T.Rex. After Bolan and T.Rex’s demise, he worked as a session musician for The Blow Monkeys and The Soup Dragons.
Suzi Quatro 1950 – Bassist/singer/songwriter/actress who is the first female bass player to become a major rock star and broke a barrier to women’s participation in rock music. She had hits with “Rolling Stone”, “Can the Can”, “48 Crash”, “Daytona Demon”, and “Devil Gate Drive”. She also had a recurring role as a female bass player on the popular American sitcom Happy Days, her duet “Stumblin’ In” with Chris Norman reached number 4 in the USA.
Billy Powell 1952 (d.2009) – He was the longtime keyboardist of Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, from 1970 until his death in 2009. In 2007, two years before his death, Powell played piano on Kid Rock’s summer anthem “All Summer Long” (which samples “Sweet Home Alabama”).
Dan Hill 1954 – Pop singer/songwriter who had two major hits with his songs, “Sometimes When We Touch” and “Can’t We Try”, a duet with Vonda Shepard. He also had a near Top 40 hit with “Never Thought (That I Could Love)”.
Kerry King 1964 – best known as a guitarist for the American thrash metal band Slayer. He co-founded the band with Jeff Hanneman in 1981 and has been a member ever since. He has made guest appearances with acts including the Beastie Boys, Marilyn Manson, Pantera, Anthrax, Ice-T, Witchery, Sum 41, Megadeth and Metallica.
Mike Gordon 1965 – bass guitar player and vocalist most recognized as a founding member and bassist for the rock band Phish. In addition to bass, Gordon is accomplished banjo player, and is proficient at piano, and guitar. Gordon wrote 19 original Phish songs and co-authored 22 additional Phish tracks, including “Mound”, “Train Song”, “Round Room”, “Sugar Shack” and others.
Rusty Day 1982 (b.1945) – was a rock vocalist and frontman, best known for his work with the bands Amboy Dukes and Cactus. He was known for his powerful vocals and out-of-control lifestyle. Cactus was initially conceived in late 1969 as a supergroup of the Vanilla Fudge rhythm section of bassist Tim Bogert and drummer Carmine Appice with guitarist Jeff Beck and singer Rod Stewart. However, Beck had an automobile accident and Stewart joined Ronnie Wood in the Faces. Out of frustration, Bogert and Appice formed what became known as Cactus in early 1970. The cast was complete when Day joined them on vocals and Jim McCarty joined on lead guitar.
Koko Taylor 2009 (b.1928) – Blues singer, popularly known as the “Queen of the Blues.”She was known primarily for her rough, powerful vocals and traditional blues stylings. In 1965, Taylor was signed by Chess Records subsidiary Checker Records where she recorded “Wang Dang Doodle,” a song written by Dixon and recorded by Howlin’ Wolf five years earlier. The song became a hit, reaching number four on the R&B charts and number 58 on the pop chartsin 1966, and selling a million copies.
Benny Spellman 2011 (b.1931) – R & B singer,best known for his 1962 hit “Lipstick Traces (On A Cigarette),” written by Allen Toussaint and the original version of “Fortune Teller”, covered by The Rolling Stones among others. “Lipstick Traces” reached #28 on the US Billboard Black singles chart and #80 on the Billboard Hot 100.Spellman variously worked with Allen Toussaint, Earl King (“Trick Bag”), Huey “Piano” Smith, Ernie K-Doe, Wilson Pickett, The Neville Brothers and The O’Jays.
Andrew Gold 2011 (b.1951) – Singer, musician and songwriter. His works include the Top 10 single “Lonely Boy” (1977), as well as “Thank You for Being a Friend” (1978), and “Never Let Her Slip Away” (1978). He also played most of the instruments on Art Garfunkel’s solo hit “I Only Have Eyes For You”, as well as several other cuts on Garfunkel’s album Breakaway, and played guitar on two cuts of Eric Carmen’s, Boats Against the Current album, including “She Did It”. Throughout the years, he played and/or sang on records and/or live performances with Carly Simon, Jennifer Warnes, Stephen Bishop, Nicolette Larson, Maria Muldaur, Neil Diamond, Barbi Benton, Juice Newton, Leo Sayer, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Karla Bonoff, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, Brian Wilson, Don Henley and others.
Freddy Fender 1937 (d.2006) – Country and rock and roll musician, known for his work as a solo artist and in the groups Los Super Seven and the Texas Tornados. He is best known for his 1975 hits “Before the Next Teardrop Falls” and the subsequent remake of his own “Wasted Days and Wasted Nights”.
Cliff Bennett 1940 – Singer/songwriter of the R&B, soul and beat group Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers who had two Top 10 hits with “One Way Love” (#9 UK, 1964) and “Got to Get You into My Life” (#6 UK, 1966).
Michelle Phillips 1944 – Singer/songwriter/actress who gained fame as a member of the 1960’s group The Mamas & the Papas, and is the last surviving original member of the group. While a member of The Mamas & the Papas, she co-wrote some of the band’s hits, including “Creeque Alley” and “California Dreamin'”. In 1973, she recorded vocals as a cheerleader along with Darlene Love, for the Cheech & Chong single “Basketball Jones”. In 1975 she signed a solo recording contract with A&M Records and released a promo single, “Aloha Louie”, that she wrote with ex-husband John Phillips. Phillips released her first solo single in 1976, “No Love Today”, on the Mother, Jugs & Speed movie soundtrack.
Roger Ball 1944 – Saxophonist/keyboards/songwriter and one of the founding members of the funk/R&B band Average White Band (AWB), who were best known for their million selling song, “Pick Up the Pieces” and their albums AWB and Cut the Cake. He co-wrote a total of forty three songs for the Average White Band. Before forming AWB in 1971, Ball was a session musician in London, arranging and playing for Vinegar Joe, Badfinger, Kiki Dee and Elton John, Mama Cass, Bryan Ferry, Roxy Music and others. He has played on stage with Chaka Khan and Marvin Gaye.
Gordon Waller 1945 (d.2009) – Singer/songwriter/guitarist who was best known as one half of of the 1960’s pop music duo Peter and Gordon (you can guess which half ;)), whose biggest hit was the #1 million-selling classic “A World Without Love” (which was written by Paul McCartney).
Jimmy McCulloch 1953 (d.1979) – Best known for playing lead guitar in Paul McCartney’s Wings from 1974 to 1977. McCulloch was a member of the Glasgow psychedelic band One in a Million (formerly known as The Jaygars), Thunderclap Newman, and Stone the Crows. McCulloch composed the music score of the anti-drug song “Medicine Jar” on Wings’ Venus and Mars album and the similar “Wino Junko” on the band’s Wings at the Speed of Sound album, and also sang both songs. He played guitar on the Small Faces’ album, ‘78 In the Shade.
Derek Leckenby 1994 (b.1943) – Lead guitarist, most famous for his work with English pop group Herman’s Hermits. Leckenby is credited with arranging the band’s first big hit, “I’m into Something Good”. His skills on guitar and dobro are heard on releases such as the LP A Whale of a Tale and the later singles, such as “Ginny Go Softly” and “Heart Get Ready for Love”.
Ronnie Lane 1997 (b.1946) – Musician,/songwriter/producer who is best known as the bass guitarist and founding member of two prominent English rock and roll bands: Small Faces where he was nicknamed “Plonk”, (1965–69) – and, after losing the band’s frontman, Faces, with two new members added to the line up, (from The Jeff Beck Group), who dubbed him “Three-Piece” (1969–73). With Small Faces Lane and Steve Marriott began writing hit songs consistently, including “Itchycoo Park” and “All or Nothing”. He shared primary songwriting duties in Faces with Rod Stewart, composing, or co-composing, many of their best-loved pieces and taking a central role during the recording of their fourth and final album, Ooh La La, particularly, as the band’s front man, Rod Stewart focused on his own solo career.
Freddie Scott 2007 (b.1933) – Soul singer/songwriter. His biggest hits were “Hey, Girl”, a top ten US pop hit in 1963, and “Are You Lonely For Me”, a no.1 hit on the R&B chart in early 1967.
Joey Covington 2013 (b.1945) – Drummer who was best known for his involvements with Hot Tuna who he was a co-founder of in 1969, and also played with Jefferson Airplane.
Michael Davis 1943 (d.2012) – Bassist/singer/songwriter/producer who was best known as a member of the MC5 (“Kick out the jams Motherf**kers”). Davis became the bassist for the MC5 in 1964, replacing original bassist Pat Burrows when singer Rob Tyner and guitarist Wayne Kramer decided that they liked Davis’s style and wanted him in the band. He played on the band’s three original albums, including their debut Kick Out the Jams, and remained in the group until 1972.
John Du Cann 1946 (d.2011) – Guitarist primarily known through his work in the 1970’s band, Atomic Rooster. He led a psychedelic, progressive, hard rock band called Andromeda, before being asked to join Atomic Rooster, featuring re-recorded guitar parts and vocals for their 1970 self-titled debut album, and the albums Death Walks Behind You (1970) and In Hearing of Atomic Rooster (1971). In 1974 he was a temporary guitarist in Thin Lizzy for a tour of Germany.
Freddie Stone 1947 – Best known for his role as co-founder, guitarist, and vocalist in the band Sly and the Family Stone, the frontman for which was his brother Sly Stone. His sisters Rosie Stone and Vet Stone were also members of the band. After leaving the band in the mid-1970s, Freddie Stone signed a short recording contract with Motown Records.
Tom Evans 1947 (d.1983) – Musician/songwriter, most notable for his work with the band Badfinger. Paul McCartney gave the group a boost by offering them his song “Come and Get It”, which he produced for the band. Badfinger enjoyed more major successes in the early 1970’s with singles such as “No Matter What,” “Day After Day,” and “Baby Blue”. Each featured some of Evans vocals; background harmony and dual lead. Evans’ high-career moment was with his composition “Without You,” a song co-written with bandmate Pete Ham which became a #1 hit for Harry Nilsson and has since become a standard in the music industry.
Laurie Anderson 1947 – Experimental performance artist, composer and musician who plays violin and keyboards and sings in a variety of experimental music and art rock styles. She became widely known in 1981 when her single “O Superman” reached number two on the UK pop charts. She also starred in and directed the 1986 concert film Home of the Brave. Anderson married singer/songwriter/guitarist Lou Reed in 2008.
Nicko McBrain 1952 – Drummer best known for his work with British heavy metal band Iron Maiden, which he joined in 1982 in time to debut on their fourth album, Piece of Mind (1983), and has remained with them since, contributing to a total of twelve studio releases. Although he writes the drum parts for all the band’s songs, McBrain registered his first and only album songwriting credit for “New Frontier,” from 2003’s Dance of Death, which expresses his opposition to human cloning, arising from his religious beliefs.
Peter Erskine 1954 – Jazz drummer/composer who has enjoyed a long and successful career as a session drummer, recording and touring with many famous jazz and rock artists, including Steely Dan and Weather Report. After four years and five albums with Weather Report and the Jaco Pastorius big band Word of Mouth, he joined Steps Ahead. His big band recordings with the Bob Mintzer Big Band are excellent modern big band jazz/funk performances studied by many students of drums and drumming.
Richard Butler 1956 – Lead singer of the Psychedelic Furs (“Pretty in Pink”) who he formed with his brother Tim in 1977. He was also the founder and vocalist for the disbanded Love Spit Love.
Jim Hodder 1990 (b.1947) – Best known as the original drummer for Steely Dan who he joined in 1972, but left in 1974. While part of Steely Dan, he worked on the “Can’t Buy a Thrill” and “Countdown to Ecstasy” albums as well as part of “Pretzel Logic”. In 1972 he sang the lead vocal on the song “Midnight Cruiser” and the vocal on the song “Dallas”, which appeared only on a single. He continued working as a session musician, playing drums on Linda Ronstadt’s single “You’re No Good,” and for musicians such as Sammy Hagar and David Soul.
Conway Twitty 1993 (b.1933) – Country singer/songwriter who held the record for the most number one singles of any act, with 40 No. 1 Billboard country hits, until George Strait broke the record in 2006. His first of nine top 40 hits came in 1958 while he was with MGM Records. An Ohio radio station did not play “I’ll Try”, an MGM single that went nowhere in terms of sales, radio play, and jukebox play; instead playing the B-side, “It’s Only Make Believe”. The record took nearly one year to reach and stay at the top spot on the Billboard pop music charts in the US, as well as No. 1 in 21 other countries. In 1970, Twitty recorded and released his biggest hit ever, “Hello Darlin'”. In 1971 he released his first hit duet with Loretta Lynn, “After the Fire Is Gone”. It was a success, and many more followed, including “Lead Me On” (1971), “Louisiana Woman, Mississippi Man” (1973), “As Soon as I Hang Up the Phone” (1974), “Feelins'” (1975), “I Still Believe in Waltzes”, “I Can’t Love You Enough”, and many others.
Mel Tormé 1999 (b.1925) – Jazz vocalist/musician/composer/actor, nicknamed “The Velvet Fog”, who was best known as a singer of jazz standards. He composed the music for the classic holiday song “The Christmas Song” (“Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire”) and co-wrote the lyrics with Bob Wells. As a solo singer, he recorded several romantic hits for Decca (1945), and with the Artie Shaw Orchestra on the Musicraft label (1946–48). In 1949, he moved to Capitol Records, where his first record, “Careless Hands,” became his only number one hit. His versions of “Again” and “Blue Moon” became signature tunes.
Dee Dee Ramone 2002 (b.1951) – Best known as founding member, songwriter, and bassist for punk rock band the Ramones. He was the band’s most prolific lyricist and songwriter, writing many of the band’s most well-known songs, such as “53rd & 3rd”, “Commando”, “Rockaway Beach”, and “Poison Heart”. He was initially the band’s lead vocalist, though his (then) inability to sing and play bass at the same time resulted in original drummer Joey Ramone taking over the lead vocalist duties.
Herb Reed 2012 (b.1928) – Vocalist and founding member of The Platters, who were known for their hits during the 1950’s and 1960’s. Reed thought of the group’s name after noticing that DJs in the 1950’s called their records, “platters”. He was the only member of The Platters who sang on all of the approximately 400 songs recorded by the group.His vocals can be heard on The Platters’ biggest hits, including Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, The Great Pretender, Twilight Time and My Prayer.
Levi Stubbs 1936 (d.2008) – R&B-soul singer who was best known as the lead vocalist of the Motown R&B group Four Tops. The most popular of their hits (all of which featured Stubbs on lead vocals) include “Baby I Need Your Loving”, “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)”, “It’s the Same Old Song”, “Reach Out I’ll Be There”, “Standing in the Shadows of Love”, “Bernadette”, “Still Water (Love)”, “Ain’t No Woman (Like the One I’ve Got)” as well as the late hit “Loco In Acapulco”.
Gary U.S. Bonds 1939 – Singer/songwriter who’s first hit was the song “New Orleans”, followed by “Not Me”, a flop for Bonds but later a hit for The Orlons, and then by his only number one hit, “Quarter to Three” in June 1961. “Quarter To Three” sold one million records, earning a gold disc and it also appears on The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll list.
Peter Albin 1944 – Guitarist and one of the founding members of Big Brother and the Holding Company who were discovered by entrepreneur Chet Helms in 1965. They went on to become the house band at the Avalon Ballroom in San Francisco, playing a progressive style of instrumental rock. Feeling a need for a strong vocalist, Helms contacted Janis Joplin in Austin, Texas, who at the time was considering joining up with Roky Erickson of the 13th Floor Elevators. She traveled to San Francisco and debuted with the band at the Avalon on June 10, 1966.
Edgar Froese 1944 – Songwriter/musician/piano/synthesizers best known for founding the electronic music group, Tangerine Dream. Although his solo and group recordings prior to 2003 name him as “Edgar Froese”, his solo albums from 2003 onward bear the artist name “Edgar W. Froese”.
Tony Levin 1946 – Bassist/songwriter who is best known for his work with progressive rock pioneers King Crimson and Peter Gabriel. He has also been a member of Liquid Tension Experiment; the King Crimson-related bands Bruford Levin Upper Extremities, ProjeKct One and ProjeKct Four; and currently leads his own band, Stick Men. A prolific session musician since the 1970’s, Levin has played on 500 albums, including those of Cher, Alice Cooper, John Lennon, Sarah McLachlan, Stevie Nicks, Pink Floyd, Dire Straits, Lou Reed, Tom Waits, Buddy Rich, The Roches, Todd Rundgren, Seal, Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe, Warren Zevon, Kevin Parent, Laurie Anderson, Kate and Anna McGarrigle, and Jean-Pierre Ferland. Additionally, he has toured with artists including Paul Simon (with whom Levin appeared in Simon’s 1980 film One Trick Pony), Gary Burton, James Taylor, Herbie Mann, Judy Collins, Carly Simon, Peter Frampton, Tim Finn, Richie Sambora, and Claudio Baglioni.
Steve Vai 1960 – Guitarist/songwriter who recorded and toured in Frank Zappa’s band for two years, from 1980 to 1982. He began a solo career in 1983, has released eight solo albums and won three Grammy Awards. He has also recorded and toured with Public Image Ltd., Alcatrazz, David Lee Roth and Whitesnake.
Cristina Scabbia 1972 – Singer/songwriter who is best known as one of the two vocalists in the Italian heavy metal band Lacuna Coil. Scabbia is featured in a Megadeth song, “À Tout le Monde (Set Me Free)”. She is also the featured artist in the Apocalyptica song “S.O.S. (Anything But Love)” and another version of the Alter Bridge song “Watch Over You”. Scabbia has said that the biggest compliment that a fan could pay her would be to remark on her vocal abilities.Scabbia has a contralto vocal range and her highest note ever hit is claimed to be an A7.
Dick Rowe 1986 (b.1921) – was one of the most important producers and record executives at Decca Records in the UK in the 1950’s and early 1960’s and is the man who signed The Rolling Stones, Them (Van Morrison), The Moody Blues, The Tremeloes, The Zombies, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, The Brumbeats, The Tornados, Tom Jones, The Small Faces, The Marmalade and Eternal Triangle amongst others.
Robbin Crosby 2002 (b.1959) – Guitarist who was a member of glam metal band Ratt, earning several platinum albums in the U.S. in the mid-to-late 1980’s. He would end up co-writing many of Ratt’s songs including “Round and Round”, “Wanted Man” and “Lay it Down”. The album Out of the Cellar went to triple platinum based on Crosby’s co-penned “Round and Round”.
Dave Rowberry 2003 (b.1940) – Songwriter/piano player most known for being a member of the rock and R&B group The Animals in the 1960’s. He played many of the group’s big hits, including “We Gotta Get Out of This Place”, “It’s My Life”, “Don’t Bring Me Down”, “Inside-Looking Out”, and “See See Rider”. He also sang backing vocals and did some occasional songwriting for the group.
Marvin Isley 2010 (b.1953) – Bassist and the youngest member of the family music group the Isley Brothers. In addition to playing bass, he also provided percussion and also wrote or co-wrote some of the group’s hits including “Fight the Power”, “The Pride” and “Between the Sheets”. Breaking away from the Isleys in 1984, he, Ernie and Chris formed the trio, Isley-Jasper-Isley, who had a hit in 1985 with “Caravan of Love”.
Billy Preston 2006 (b.1946) – Singer/songwriter/piano who became famous first as a session musician with artists such as Little Richard, Sam Cooke, Ray Charles and the Beatles, and was later successful as a solo artist with hits including “Outa-Space”, its sequel, “Space Race”, “Will It Go Round in Circles” and “Nothing from Nothing”. He was co-author, with The Beach Boys’ Dennis Wilson, of “You Are So Beautiful,” recorded by Preston and later a #5 hit for Joe Cocker. Alongside Tony Sheridan, Billy Preston was the only other musician to be credited on a Beatles recording: the artists on the number-one hit “Get Back” are given as “The Beatles with Billy Preston”. Stephen Stills asked Preston if he could use Preston’s phrase “if you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with” and created the hit song.
Dean Martin 1917 (d.1995) – Singer/comedian/actor was nicknamed the “King of Cool”for his seemingly effortless charisma and self-assuredness, as well as a member of the Rat Pack. Martin’s relaxed, warbling crooning voice earned him dozens of hit singles including his signature songs “Memories Are Made of This”, “That’s Amore”, “Everybody Loves Somebody”, “You’re Nobody till Somebody Loves You”, “Sway”, “Volare” and “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head?”. He was the host of the television variety program The Dean Martin Show (1965–1974), and subsequently The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts (1974–1985).
Sir Thomas John Woodward (aka Tom Jones) 1940 – Singer who started his career in the 1960’s and has sung nearly every form of popular music – pop, rock, R&B, show tunes, country, dance, soul and gospel – and sold over 100 million records. Jones has had thirty-six Top 40 hits in the United Kingdom and nineteen in the United States; some of his notable songs include “It’s Not Unusual”, “What’s New Pussycat”, “Delilah”, “Green, Green Grass of Home”, “She’s a Lady”, “Kiss” and “Sex Bomb”. Having been awarded an OBE in 1999, Jones received a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II for “services to music” in 2006.
Clarence White 1944 (d.1972) – was a guitar player for Nashville West, The Byrds, Muleskinner, and the Kentucky Colonels. White contributed twangy lead guitar on two of the songs from The Byrds album Younger Than Yesterday : “Time Between” and “The Girl With No Name”. He was invited back to play on The Byrds’ next album, The Notorious Byrd Brothers, and he also contributed to Sweetheart of the Rodeo, the group’s Gram Parsons-led foray into traditional honky-tonk which has become a landmark recording.
Mark Reale 1955 (d.2012) – was a heavy metal guitarist best known for being the only constant original member in the band Riot. He was the principal songwriter and main creative force behind Riot starting with the band’s 1977 debut album Rock City. The group’s most acclaimed album was 1981’s seminal Fire Down Under, their other notable records include Restless Breed (1982), the band’s comeback album, Thundersteel (1988), and its follow-up, The Privilege of Power (1990). Riot has toured all around the world and been a support act for major acts such as Kiss, AC/DC, Sammy Hagar, Molly Hatchet, and Rush while maintaining a particularly strong fanbase in Japan and Continental Europe.
“Prince” Rogers Nelson 1958 – Singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who is best known for his 1984 album/song/movie Purple Rain. Songs from the film were hits on pop charts around the world, while “When Doves Cry” and “Let’s Go Crazy” reached No.1 and the title track reached No.2 on the Billboard Hot 100. At one point in 1984, Prince simultaneously had the number one album, single, and film in the U.S.; it was the first time a singer had achieved this feat.Prince won the Academy Award for Best Original Song Score for Purple Rain, and the album is ranked 72nd Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Eric Kretz 1966 – best known as the drummer for the rock band Stone Temple Pilots, and has also played for Talk Show and Spiralarms. While in STP, Kretz has kept somewhat of a low profile but still contributed to the band’s songwriting, most notably writing the music to the band’s 1996 hit “Trippin’ on a Hole in a Paper Heart.” Along with lead vocalist Scott Weiland, Kretz also wrote the lyrics to the Grammy Award-winning hit “Plush” off STP’s 1992 debut Core.
Dave Navarro 1967 – Guitarist/songwriter who plays in the alternative rock band Jane’s Addiction and cover band Camp Freddy. He has also played with Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Panic Channel, and many others.
Stuart Cable 2010 (b.1970) – best known as the original drummer for the band Stereophonics. Most recently, Cable had been drumming in his new Welsh band, Killing for Company,who were the first band to play the new Liberty Stadium in Swansea, supporting The Who.
Hugh Hopper 2009 (b.1945) – Progressive rock and jazz fusion bass guitarist who was a prominent member of the Canterbury scene, as a member of Soft Machine and various other related bands.
Bob Welch 2012 (b.1945) – Singer/songwriter/guitarist who was a former member of Fleetwood Mac where he was given the role of rhythm guitarist, backing up lead guitarist Danny Kirwan. Welch eventually went to live in the band’s communal home, a mansion called Benifold, which was located in Hampshire where they would record four albums, Future Games, Bare Trees, Penguin and Mystery to Me. He also had a successful solo career in the late 1970’s with a few singles including, “Hot Love, Cold World”, “Ebony Eyes”, “Precious Love”, and his signature “Sentimental Lady”.
Nancy Sinatra 1940 – Singer/actress and daughter of Frank Sinatra who is best known for her 1966 signature hit “These Boots Are Made for Walkin'”. Other defining recordings include “Sugar Town”, the 1967 number one “Somethin’ Stupid” (a duet with her father), the title song from the James Bond film You Only Live Twice, several collaborations with Lee Hazlewood such as “Jackson”, and her cover of Cher’s “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)”, which features during the opening sequence of Quentin Tarantino’s (2003) hit movie Kill Bill.
Chuck Negron 1942 – Singer/songwriter best known as one of the three lead vocalists in the band Three Dog Night, which he helped to form in 1968 and they went on to become one of the most successful bands of the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. Their first gold record was “One” (US #5), which had been written and recorded by Harry Nilsson. The group had three US #1 songs, each of which featured a different lead singer: “Mama Told Me Not to Come” (Cory Wells on lead), which was also their only Top 10 hit in the UK; “Joy to the World” (Chuck Negron on lead); and “Black and White” (Danny Hutton on lead).
Boz Scaggs 1944 – Singer/songwriter/guitarist who gained fame in the 1960’s as a guitarist and sometimes lead singer with the Steve Miller Band and in the 1970’s with several solo Top 20 hit singles , along with the #2 album, Silk Degrees which spawned three hit singles: “Lowdown”, “Lido Shuffle”, and “What Can I Say”. Despite good reviews, his sole Atlantic album, Boz Scaggs, featuring the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section and session guitarist Duane Allman, performing Fenton Robinson’s “Loan Me A Dime,” achieved only moderate sales.
Bonnie Tyler 1951 – Singer/songwriter who came to prominence with the release of her 1976 album The World Starts Tonight and its singles “Lost in France” and “More Than a Lover”. Her 1978 single “It’s a Heartache” was a hit on both sides of the Atlantic. Her career peaked in the 1980’s with her Jim Steinman collaboration, releasing international hits “Total Eclipse of the Heart”, “Holding Out for a Hero”, “If You Were a Woman and I Was a Man” and “Here She Comes”.
Jeff Rich 1953 – best known as a former drummer for the English rock band Status Quo. Rich played with Stretch, Judie Tzuke and the Climax Blues Band prior to joining Status Quo. He helped out Def Leppard in August 1986 and played alongside Rick Allen who had lost his left arm in a car accident in December 1984. However, during Def Leppard’s warm-up mini tour of Ireland, Rich accidentally missed a gig, and the rest of the band realised Allen could drum alone.
Greg Ginn 1954 – best known for being the leader of and primary songwriter for the hardcore punk band Black Flag, which he founded and led from 1976 to 1986, and again in 2003. The band announced another reunion on January 25, 2013.
Mick Hucknall 1960 – Singer/songwriter who was the lead singer of the English band Simply Red, and is recognizable for his smooth, distinctive voice and wide vocal range.
Nick Rhodes 1962 – best known as the founding member and keyboardist of the pop rock band Duran Duran. Rhodes is the only original member who appeared in all different lineups in the band since its formation. He has also released albums with Arcadia in 1985 (a Duran Duran side-project),as well as The Devils in 2002 with Stephen Duffy the original lead singer of Duran Duran.
Derek Trucks 1979 – Blues guitarist/singer/songwriter and founder of the Grammy Award winning, The Derek Trucks Band. He became an official member of The Allman Brothers Band in 1999 and appeared on the albums Live at the Beacon Theatre and Hittin’ the Note. In 2006 Trucks began a studio collaboration with Eric Clapton called The Road to Escondido and Trucks found himself performing with three bands in 17 different countries that year. Trucks was invited to perform at the 2007 Crossroads Guitar Festival and after the festival he toured as part of Clapton’s band. He formed the Tedeschi Trucks Band in 2010 with his wife Susan Tedeschi.
Lynne Randell 2007 (b.1949) – Pop singer who was Australia’s most popular female performer for 3 years in the 1960’s and had hits with “Heart” and “Goin’ Out of My Head” in 1966, and “Ciao Baby” in 1967. In 1967, Randell toured the United States with The Monkees and performed on-stage with support act Jimi Hendrix.
Alan Rubin 2011 (b.1953) – also known as Mr. Fabulous who he portrayed in the 1980 film “The Blues Brothers”, and in the 1998 sequel and was a member of the touring band who played trumpet, flugelhorn, and piccolo trumpet. He also played with an array of artists, such as Frank Sinatra, Frank Zappa, Duke Ellington, Blood, Sweat and Tears, Eumir Deodato, Sting, Aerosmith, The Rolling Stones, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Frankie Valli, Eric Clapton, Billy Joel, B.B. King, Miles Davis, Yoko Ono, Peggy Lee, Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Ray Charles, Cab Calloway and Dr. John.
Les Paul 1915 (d.2009) – Guitarist/songwriter/inventor was one of the pioneers of the solid-body electric guitar, which made the sound of rock and roll possible. He is credited with many recording innovations. Although he was not the first to use the technique, his early experiments with overdubbing (also known as sound on sound), delay effects such as tape delay, phasing effects and multitrack recording were among the first to attract widespread attention. In 1949 he married Mary Ford and some of their hits included “How High the Moon”, “Bye Bye Blues”, “Song in Blue”, “Don’cha Hear Them Bells”, “The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise”, and “Vaya con Dios”. These songs featured Ford harmonizing with herself.
Johnny Ace 1929 (d.1954) – Rhythm and blues singer who scored a string of hit singles in the mid-1950’s. He had eight hits in a row, including “Cross My Heart,” “Please Forgive Me,” “The Clock,” “Yes, Baby,” “Saving My Love for You,” and “Never Let Me Go.”
Jackie Wilson 1934 (d.1984) – Singer/songwriter who was known as “Mr. Excitement”, Wilson was important in the transition of rhythm and blues into soul. His first single in 1957 was, “Reet Petite” from the album He’s So Fine, which became a modest R&B success (and many years later, a huge international smash). Some of his other singles in the late 50’s to mid 60’s were “To Be Loved”, “I’m Wanderin'”, “We Have Love”, “That’s Why (I Love You So)”, “I’ll Be Satisfied” and his late-1958 signature song, “Lonely Teardrops”, which peaked at No. 7 on the pop charts, No. 1 on the R&B charts, and established him as an R&B superstar known for his extraordinary, operatic multi-octave vocal range. In 1966, he scored the first of two big comeback singles with “Whispers (Gettin’ Louder)” and “(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher”, a No. 6 Pop smash in 1967, which became one of his final pop hits.
Jon Lord 1941 (d.2012) – Composer/keyboardist and Hammond organ player known for his pioneering work in fusing rock with classical or baroque forms, especially with Deep Purple, as well as Whitesnake, Paice Ashton Lord, The Artwoods, and The Flower Pot Men. In 1968 Lord co-founded Deep Purple, a hard rock band of which he was regarded as the leader until 1970. Together with the other members, he collaborated on most of his band’s most popular songs. He and drummer Ian Paice were the only continual band members during the period from 1968 to 1976, and also from when it was reestablished in 1984 until Lord’s retirement from Deep Purple in 2002. Ian Gillan said that Lord provided the idea on the main organ riff for “Child in Time” although the riff was also based on It’s a Beautiful Day’s 1969 psychedelic hit song “Bombay Calling”. The highlights of Lord’s Purple work in the period include the 1972 album Machine Head (featuring his rhythmic underpinnings on “Smoke on the Water” and “Space Truckin'”, plus the organ solos on “Highway Star” and “Lazy”), the sonic bombast of the Made in Japan live album (1972), an extended, effect-laden solo on “Rat Bat Blue” from the Who Do We Think We Are album (1973), and his overall playing on the Burn album from 1974.
Mick Box 1947 – Lead guitarist of British rock group Uriah Heep, having previously been a member of The Stalkers and Spice, both with original Uriah Heep vocalist David Byron. He is the only member from the band’s founding in 1969 who is still active with the group.
George Bunnell 1949 – Bass/rhythm guitars/vocals/songwriter with the band Strawberry Alarm Clock. Shortly after recording “Incense and Peppermints”, the band added Bunnell before making their first LP in 1967, also titled Incense and Peppermints, which hit No. 11 on the US album chart. Bunnell would also become their main songwriter. Some early Strawberry Alarm Clock songs were penned by Bunnell with Steve Bartek.
Trevor Bolder 1950 (d.2013) – Bassist who was best known for his long association with Uriah Heep and his tenure with The Spiders From Mars, the one-time backing band for David Bowie, although he also played alongside a variety of musicians from the early 1970′s. His work with Bowie appeared on the studio albums Hunky Dory (1971), The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1972), Aladdin Sane (1973), and Pin Ups (1973)
Pete Gill 1951 – Heavy metal drummer, formerly a member of The Glitter Band, Saxon and Motörhead. Gill was one of the two drummers in The Glitter Band, then formed part of the original line up of Saxon in 1978. He stayed with them until 1981, when he injured his hand. Gill later spent three years with Motörhead, 1984 to 1987, recording four new tracks for the compilation No Remorse and one full album, Orgasmatron.
Paul Chapman 1954 – Guitarist/songwriter best known for his work in bands such as UFO and Lone Star. Chapman is well known by his nickname “Tonka”, allegedly acquired because of his indestructible qualities. Chapman recorded his first album with UFO – No Place To Run – with ex-Beatles producer George Martin; which was released in January 1980. He remained in UFO until 1983 and played on another three albums, The Wild, The Willing And The Innocent (1981); Mechanix (1982); and Making Contact. He also played on a Nazareth tribute album released in 2001, Another Hair Of The Dog, on two tracks “This Flight Tonight” and “Let Me Be Your Dog”.
Gregg Bissonette 1959 – has been a touring, session recording, and full-time drum set player in many jazz and rock bands. He is well known for his instructional videos, drum clinics, and for having been a member of the David Lee Roth band on Roth’s multi-platinum releases Eat ‘Em and Smile (1986) and Skyscraper (1988). Bissonette also appears on David Lee Roth’s A Little Ain’t Enough (1991) and Joe Satriani’s The Extremist (1992) along with brother Matt playing bass. In 1997, he played drums on In a Metal Mood: No More Mr. Nice Guy by Pat Boone, he played drums on Steve Lukather’s album Luke and the subsequent tour as well as many more albums with various artists.
Dean Felber 1967 – Bassist/backing vocals/piano and one of the founding members of Hootie & The Blowfish. As of July 2010, the band had charted sixteen singles on various Billboard singles charts and recorded five studio albums; and their 1994 debut album, Cracked Rear View, was the 16th-best-selling album of all time in the US, having been certified platinum 16 times.
Matt Bellamy 1978 – Composer and multi-instrumentalist, best known as the lead vocalist, lead guitarist, pianist, and main songwriter of the rock band Muse. As a performer, he is often recognised for his eccentric stage persona, wide vocal range of 3.5 octaves as well as his piano and guitar playing abilities.
Arthur Alexander 1993 (b.1940) – Country songwriter and soul singer who has written songs publicized by such stars as The Beatles, Elvis Presley, Otis Redding, Tina Turner and Jerry Lee Lewis. “You Better Move On” is perhaps Alexander’s best-known song, covered by the Rolling Stones, the Hollies, George Jones & Johnny Paycheck and Mink DeVille. “Anna (Go to Him)”, a U.S. R&B Top Ten Hit, was covered by the Beatles and Humble Pie. The Beatles also did live recordings of “Soldier of Love”, which was also performed by Marshall Crenshaw and Pearl Jam, “A Shot of Rhythm and Blues”, and “Where Have You Been” recorded live at the Star-Club, in Hamburg, 1962.
Chester Burnett aka Howlin’ Wolf 1910 (d.1976) – influential blues singer, guitarist and harmonica player known for his booming voice and looming physical presence (6’6″ (197 and close to 300 lbs), Burnett is commonly ranked among the leading performers in electric blues; musician and critic Cub Koda declared, “no one could match Howlin’ Wolf for the singular ability to rock the house down to the foundation while simultaneously scaring its patrons out of its wits.”A number of songs written or popularized by Burnett—such as “Smokestack Lightnin'”, “Back Door Man”, “Killing Floor” and “Spoonful” have become blues and blues rock standards. Howlin’ Wolf was also inspired by other popular blues performers of the time, including the Mississippi Sheiks, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Ma Rainey, Lonnie Johnson, Tampa Red, Blind Blake, and Tommy Johnson (two of the earliest songs he mastered were Jefferson’s “Match Box Blues” and Leroy Carr’s “How Long, How Long Blues”).
Judy Garland 1922 (d.1969) – Singer/actress/vaudevillian who was once described by Fred Astaire as “the greatest entertainer who ever lived” and renowned for her contralto voice. Garland next came to the attention of studio executives by singing a special arrangement of “You Made Me Love You (I Didn’t Want to Do It)” to Clark Gable at a birthday party held by the studio for the actor. Her rendition was so well regarded that she performed the song in the all-star extravaganza Broadway Melody of 1938 (1937), singing to a photograph of him. In 1938, aged 16, she was the main role as Dorothy Gale in The Wizard of Oz (1939), a film based on the children’s book by L. Frank Baum. In this film, she sang the song with which she would forever be identified, “Over the Rainbow.”
Shirley Owens 1941 – was the lead member of the hit singing group, The Shirelles. She enjoyed a string of hits with the Shirelles throughout the 1960’s including, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow”, “I Met Him on a Sunday”, “Tonight’s the Night”, “Dedicated to the One I Love”, a cover of The “5” Royales song of the same name, and a few others.
Rick Price 1944 – Bassist who has played with various Birmingham based rock bands, most notably Sight and Sound, The Move (1969–1971), Electric Light Orchestra (1970) and Wizzard (1972–1975). With the latter he had two #1 UK hit singles, “See My Baby Jive” and “Angel Fingers”, as well as the #4 Christmas classic, “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday” (all 1973).
Jimmy Chamberlin 1964 – Drummer/producer/songwriter who is best known as the former drummer for the alternative rock band The Smashing Pumpkins. The first two Smashing Pumpkins albums, Gish and Siamese Dream, were performed almost entirely by Billy Corgan and Chamberlin alone.
Addie “Micki” Harris 1982 (b.1940) – was an original member of the hit singing group, The Shirelles. She enjoyed a string of hits with the Shirelles throughout the 1960’s including, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow”, “I Met Him on a Sunday”, “Tonight’s the Night”, “Dedicated to the One I Love”, a cover of The “5” Royales song of the same name, and a few others.
Ray Charles 2004 (b.1930) – Pianist/singer/songwriter who was a pioneer in the genre of soul music during the 1950s by fusing rhythm and blues, gospel, and blues styles into his early recordings with Atlantic Records. In honoring Charles, Billy Joel noted: “This may sound like sacrilege, but I think Ray Charles was more important than Elvis Presley. Charles’ first recording session with Atlantic (“The Midnight Hour”/”Roll With my Baby”) came in September 1952. “Mess Around” became Charles’ first Atlantic hit in 1953 and he later had hits the following year with “It Should Have Been Me” and “Don’t You Know”. He also recorded the songs, “Midnight Hour” and “Sinner’s Prayer”. Late in 1954, Charles recorded his own composition, “I Got a Woman”, and the song became Charles’ first number-one R&B hit in 1955 and brought him to national prominence. “This Little Girl of Mine”, “Drown in My Own Tears”, “Lonely Avenue”, “A Fool For You” and “The Night Time (Is the Right Time)” were also some of his hits. Charles reached the pinnacle of his success at Atlantic with the release of “What’d I Say”, a complex song that combined gospel, jazz, blues and Latin music and a song that Charles would later say he composed spontaneously as he was performing in clubs and dances with his small band. Despite some radio stations banning the song because of its sexually suggestive lyrics, the song became a crossover top ten pop record, Charles’ first record to do so.
Barry Beckett 2009 (b.1943) – was a keyboardist who worked as a session musician with several notable artists on their studio albums. Along with David Hood and Roger Hawkins, his bandmates in the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section, Beckett took to the road in 1973 in the expanded lineup of Traffic. Recordings from this tour can be heard on Traffic’s live album On The Road. He was involved in the “Muscle Shoals Sound” as a member of the rhythm section at the Muscle Shoals studio in Sheffield, Alabama, of which he was one of the founders in 1969. In 1979, Bob Dylan called on Wexler to produce the Slow Train Coming sessions. Beckett not only co-produced the album but played piano and organ throughout.
Joey Dee 1940 – Singer and founder of the 1950’s-1960’s group Joey Dee & The Starliters, who were best known for their successful million-selling recording “Peppermint Twist” (1961). Joey Dee and The Starliters’ first single was “Lorraine,” backed with “The Girl I Walk To School,” in 1958, distributed by the company Little. Another early single for the group was “Face of an Angel,” and the flipside was “Shimmy Baby.” The most famous lineup of Joey Dee and The Starliters is considered to be Joey Dee, David Brigati, Larry Vernieri (vocals), Carlton Lattimore (organ), Sam Taylor (guitar) and Willie Davis (drums). Later members of the touring group would include Eddie Brigati (David’s brother), Gene Cornish, and Felix Cavaliere – three-quarters of The Young Rascals – as well as guitarist Jimmy James (later known as Jimi Hendrix), Charles Neville of The Neville Brothers and a young Joe Pesci on guitar.
John Lawton 1946 – is a rock and blues vocalist best known for his work with Lucifer’s Friend, Uriah Heep and the Les Humphries Singers. In 1976 Lawton joined Uriah Heep as their frontman, recording the albums Firefly, Innocent Victim, Fallen Angeland Live in Europe ’79, touring Europe and the U.S. until September 1979. He has also worked with some big names of rock, on various projects, including Roger Glover’s “Butterfly Ball” live at the Royal Albert Hall in 1975, featuring David Coverdale, Glenn Hughes, Ian Gillan and Twiggy. He sang on Eddie Hardin’s “Wizard’s Convention II” with Chris Farlowe, Denny Lane, Paul Jones and Tony Ashton.
Glenn Leonard 1947 – is an R&B and soul singer best remembered for serving as the first tenor/secondary lead singer of the Motown quintet The Temptationsfrom 1975 to 1983. His most noted songs include I’m on Fire, Go for It, The Best of Both Worlds, Eyes, Ever Ready Love, and Silent Night from their Christmas Album.
Richard Palmer-James 1947 – is an English musician, best known for having written lyrics to several songs by the progressive rock group King Crimson in the early 1970’s. He was a founding member of Supertramp; he played guitar and vocals and wrote the lyrics for their self-titled debut album under the name Richard Palmer and co-wrote the lyrics of the song “Goldrush,” a song written during his days in the band and finally recorded on their 2002 album Slow Motion. Palmer also wrote lyrics for three of King Crimson’s albums: Larks’ Tongues in Aspic, Starless and Bible Black, and Red. He did not participate in any of King Crimson’s recordings, but worked with John Wetton and David Cross after Robert Fripp disbanded the group in 1974.
Frank Beard 1949 – is the drummer in the American rock band ZZ Top. Beard was formerly with the bands The Cellar Dwellars, who originally were a three-piece band, The Hustlers, The Warlocks, and American Blues before starting to play and record with Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill as ZZ Top. In late 1969, he joined The Moving Sidewalks guitarist and vocalist Gibbons’ ZZ Top. Beard also introduced Gibbons to bassist and vocalist Dusty Hill, with whom Beard had played in the bands American Blues, the Warlocks, and the Cellar Dwellers. After honing their trademark “Texas boogie-blues-rock” style, they released their aptly titled “ZZ Top’s First Album” on London Records in January, 1971. Despite his name, Beard is the only member of ZZ Top who does not wear a beard.
Donnie Van Zant 1952 – Singer/guitarist who is best known as a member of the band 38 Special, which he formed in 1974. He is the middle of three brothers, his older brother Ronnie was the original lead singer for Lynyrd Skynyrd who died in a 1977 plane crash in Mississippi along with five other members and associates of the band; his younger brother Johnny is Lynyrd Skynyrd’s current lead singer. Donnie and Johnny also perform together from time to time as the group Van Zant.
Roy Harper 1941 – is an English folk/rock singer, songwriter and guitarist who has been a professional musician since 1964. He has released a large catalogue of albums (21 studio albums and 10 live albums) most of which are available on his record label Science Friction (as CD and / or Music download). His influence has been acknowledged by many musicians including Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin (who named the song “Hats Off to (Roy) Harper” after him), Pete Townshend of The Who, Kate Bush, Pink Floyd (who invited him to sing guest lead vocals on their song “Have a Cigar”), and Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull; who stated Harper was his “…primary influence as an acoustic guitarist and songwriter.”
Chick Corea 1941 – is a jazz and fusion pianist, keyboardist, and composer. As a member of Miles Davis’ band in the 1960s, he participated in the birth of the electric jazz fusion movement. In the 1970’s he formed Return to Forever.Along with Herbie Hancock, McCoy Tyner and Keith Jarrett, he has been described as one of the major jazz piano voices to emerge in the post-John Coltrane era. His first album as a leader was Tones for Joan’s Bones in 1966, two years before the release of his album Now He Sings, Now He Sobs, with Roy Haynes on drums and Miroslav Vitouš on bass. In 1971, Corea founded Return to Forever with Al Dimeola, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White. Corea’s composition “Spain” first appeared on the 1972 Return to Forever album Light as a Feather. This is probably his most popular piece, and it has been recorded by a variety of artists.
Reg Presley 1941 (d.2013) – was best known as the lead singer with the 1960’s rock and roll band The Troggs, whose best known hit was “Wild Thing”, though their only UK number one single was the follow-up “With a Girl Like You”. Presley wrote the hits “With a Girl Like You” and “I Can’t Control Myself,” but his most famous composition is “Love Is All Around”. Wet Wet Wet’s 1994 cover stayed at No. 1 in the UK Singles Chart for fifteen weeks. Presley used his royalties from that cover to fund his research subjects, such as alien spacecraft, lost civilisations, alchemy, and crop circles and outlined his findings in a book, Wild Things They Don’t Tell Us, published in October 2002
John Wetton 1949 – Bassist/singer/songwriter who initially rose to fame in progressive rock with bands such as Mogul Thrash, Family, King Crimson, Roxy Music/Bryan Ferry, Uriah Heep, UK, Jack-Knife, and Wishbone Ash. His biggest commercial success was as the frontman and principal songwriter of the supergroup Asia. Their self-titled debut album sold 8 million copies worldwide and was Billboard magazine’s #1 album of 1982. Wetton has also done extensive work as a session musician with acts such as Brian Eno, Bryan Ferry and Phil Manzanera.
Bun E. Carlos 1951 – is the primary drummer for American rock band Cheap Trick. He is the band’s chief setlister and archivist, and maintains recordings of all the band’s shows, some of which have been released under the name ‘Bun E’s Bootlegs’. Carlos is left-handed, but has alternated between left and right-handed playing throughout his career. He has few writing credits, the most notable of which is the drum solo track “Who D’King”, from the album All Shook Up and Bun E. in a Box (2004), a drum sample CD.
Brad Delp 1951 (d.2007) – Singer/songwriter best known for his high vocal range as the lead singer of the rock band Boston. Their self-titled debut album has sold more than 18 million copies, and produced rock standards such as “More Than a Feeling”, “Foreplay/Long Time” and “Peace of Mind”. Delp co-wrote “Smokin'” along with Scholz, and wrote the album’s closing track, “Let Me Take You Home Tonight”. Don’t Look Back, was released two years later in August 1978. Its release spawned new hits such as the title track, “Party” (a sequel of sorts to “Smokin'”), and the poignant ballad “A Man I’ll Never Be”. As they did with “Smokin'”, Delp and Scholz again collaborated on “Party”, and Delp penned “Used To Bad News”.
Kenny Wayne Shepherd 1977 – Guitarist/singer/songwriter who has released several studio albums and experienced a rare level of commercial success both as a blues artist and self-taught young musician. From 1995 on, Shepherd took seven singles into the Top 10, and holds the record for the longest-running album on the Billboard Blues Charts with Trouble Is…. In 1996, Shepherd began a longtime collaboration with vocalist Noah Hunt, who provided the vocals for Shepherd’s signature song, “Blue on Black”.
Carl Gardner 2011 (b.1928) – Singer who was best known as the foremost member and founder of The Coasters. Known for the 1958 song “Yakety Yak”, which spent a week as number one on the Hot 100 pop list, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. As a singer, his first major career success came with The Robins, a rhythm and blues group which had a big hit in 1955, “Smokey Joe’s Café”. After leaving that group, Gardner formed the Coasters with Robins’ bass singer Bobby Nunn, Leon Hughes, and Billy Guy in 1956, at the behest of the songwriting/producing team of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, and had a two-sided hit in 1957, “Youngblood” (on which Gardner sang lead) and “Searchin’.” With new members Cornel Gunter and Will “Dub” Jones, the Coasters went on to produce several enduring classics of 1950s rock and roll music including “Yakety Yak”, “Charlie Brown”, and “Poison Ivy”.
Uriel Jones 1934 (d.2009) – was a recording session drummer for Motown’s in-house studio band, the Funk Brothers, during the 1960’s and early 1970’s. Jones had a hard-hitting, funky sound, best heard on the tracks for the hits “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – both versions, by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell in 1967 and the 1970 remake by Diana Ross, “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” by Marvin Gaye, “Cloud Nine” by the Temptations (in which he was augmented by “Spider” Webb), Jr. Walker’s “Home Cookin’,” “I Second That Emotion” by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, “For Once In My Life” by Stevie Wonder, and many more.
Bobby Freeman 1940 – Soul singer/songwriter who is best known for his two Top Ten hits, the first in 1958 on Josie Records called “Do You Want To Dance?” and the second in 1964 for Autumn Records label, “C’mon and Swim”. “Do You Want To Dance?” was covered later (as “Do You Wanna Dance”) by Del Shannon, The Beach Boys, Bette Midler, John Lennon, Cliff Richard, The Mamas & The Papas and the Ramones. “C’mon and Swim” was written and produced by 20 year-old Sylvester Stewart, later known as Sly Stone.
Dennis Locorriere 1949 – was the lead vocalist, guitarist of the pop group Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, later Dr Hook and he now continues as a solo artist and songwriter. His songs having been recorded by Bob Dylan, Crystal Gayle, BJ Thomas, Helen Reddy, Willie Nelson, Southside Johnny and by Jerry Lee Lewis, on his 2006 critically acclaimed and historic release, Last Man Standing.
Paul De Lisle 1963 – is the bassist for the pop rock band, Smash Mouth and has been with the band for their whole career thus far, and is known for being the “long haired guy” in the group. Smash Mouth are known for their songs “Walkin’ on the Sun” (1997) and “All Star” (1999). They have also performed numerous covers of popular songs, including The Monkees’ “I’m a Believer”, War’s “Why Can’t We Be Friends?”, Simple Minds’ “Don’t You (Forget About Me)”, Question Mark & the Mysterians’s “Can’t Get Enough of You Baby”, The Beatles’ “Getting Better” and Disney’s “I Wan’na Be Like You”.
Clyde McPhatter 1972 (b.1932) – was an American R&B singer, perhaps the most widely imitated R&B singer of the 1950s and 1960s, making him a key figure in the shaping of doo-wop and R&B. He is best known for his solo hit “A Lover’s Question”. McPhatter was lead tenor for The Mount Lebanon Singers, a gospel group he formed as a teenager, and later, lead tenor for Billy Ward and His Dominoes. McPhatter was largely responsible for the success the Dominoes initially enjoyed. After his tenure with the Dominoes, McPhatter formed his own group, The Drifters (who had such hits as “Money Honey,” “Such a Night,” “Honey Love,” “White Christmas” and “Whatcha Gonna Do,”), before going solo.
Autry DeWalt Mixon, Jr. 1931 (d.1995) – Sax player/singer known as the leader of his own group Jr. Walker & The All Stars who were one of Motown’s feature acts in the 1960’s. Their first and signature hit was “Shotgun,” written and composed by Walker and produced by Berry Gordy. They also had many other hits, such as “(I’m A) Road Runner,” “Shake and Fingerpop” and covers of the Motown tracks, “Come See About Me” and “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You).”
Obie Benson 1936 (d.2005) – Soul/R&B singer and songwriter who was best known as the bass of Motown group the Four Tops, which he joined in 1953 and continued to perform with for over five decades, until April 8, 2005. He also co-wrote “What’s Going On” which became a #2 hit for Marvin Gaye in 1971. The Four Tops worked with Holland-Dozier-Holland who wrote and produced a number of soul music hits for them over the next few years, including “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)” and “Reach Out I’ll Be There” which both topped the US pop charts.
Rod Argent 1945 – Singer/songwriter/keyboardist and a founding member of the 1960’s English pop group The Zombies and the 1970’s band Argent. He was (with Chris White) one of the group’s two main songwriters in The Zombies, penning the hits “She’s Not There”, “Tell Her No”, and “Time of the Season”, amongst others. After The Zombies split, he went on to form Argent, who had a hit album in 1972 with All Together Now, which contained the single “Hold Your Head Up”. They also recorded the original version of the rock anthem “God Gave Rock and Roll to You”, written by lead singer Russ Ballard, which was later covered by other artists, including Petra and KISS.
Barry Melton 1947 – is the co-founder (1965) and original lead guitarist of Country Joe and The Fish. Barry appears on all the Country Joe and The Fish recordings and he also wrote some of the songs that the band recorded. He appeared in the films made at Monterey Pop and Woodstock.
Alan White 1949 – Rock drummer known for his work with the progressive rock band Yes. White was also a member of the Plastic Ono Band, playing live in 1969 at the Toronto Rock and Roll Revival, which was recorded and released three months later as Live Peace in Toronto 1969. In all, White has appeared on over fifty albums with artists including John Lennon, George Harrison, Joe Cocker, Ginger Baker, and The Ventures.
Jim Lea 1952 – Musiciian who is best know for playing bass guitar, keyboards, violin, guitar, and singing backing vocals in Slade. Slade’s lack of success during the late 1970s led Lea to wonder if their material would be better received if recorded by another band. In late 1979, Lea formed ‘The Dummies’ as a side project, with his brother Frank and wife Louise. The group released three singles, “When The Lights Are Out”, “Didn’t You Use To Use To Be You” and “Maybe Tonight”.
Marcus Miller 1959 – Jazz composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist, best known as a bass guitarist. Throughout his career, Miller worked with trumpeter Miles Davis, pianist Herbie Hancock, singer Luther Vandross, and saxophonist David Sanborn, as well as maintaining a successful solo career. Miller wrote “Tutu” for Miles Davis, a piece that defined Davis’s career in the late 1980s, and was the title track of Davis’s album Tutu, for which Miller wrote all the songs with only two exceptions, one of which was co-written with Davis. He also composed “Chicago Song” for David Sanborn and co-wrote “‘Til My Baby Comes Home”, “It’s Over Now”, “For You to Love”, and “Power of Love” for Luther Vandross.
Rory Gallagher 1995 (b.1948) – Blues guitarist/singer/songwriter who formed the band Taste in the 1960’s before going solo in the 1970’s – 80’s. A talented guitarist known for his charismatic performances and dedication to his craft. Taste released the albums Taste and On The Boards, and two live recordings, Live Taste and Live at the Isle of Wight. Gallagher played and recorded what he said was “in me all the time, and not just something I turn on …”. Though he sold over thirty million albums worldwide, it was his marathon live performances that won him greatest acclaim. He is documented in the 1974 film Irish Tour ’74, directed by Tony Palmer. Gallagher collaborated with Jerry Lee Lewis and Muddy Waters on their respective London Sessions in the mid-1970’s. He played on Lonnie Donegan’s final album. He was David Coverdale’s second choice (after Jeff Beck) to replace Ritchie Blackmore in Deep Purple but chose to perform in his own band.
Bob Bogle 1934 (d.2009) – was a founding member of the instrumental combo The Ventures. He and Don Wilson founded the group in 1958. Bogle was the lead guitarist and later bassist of the group. Bogle’s lead guitar on the Ventures’ 1960 cover of “Walk, Don’t Run” helped to influence the next generation of guitarists including John Fogerty, Steve Miller, Joe Walsh and Stevie Ray Vaughan. Bogle’s use of the tremolo arm was particularly notable.
Nigel Pickering 1929 (d.2011) – Rhythm guitarist/singer with 1960’s folk-rock band Spanky and Our Gang who were was known for their vocal harmonies. They were best known for their hit singles, “Sunday Will Never Be the Same” (their biggest hit), “Making Every Minute Count” , “Lazy Day”, “Sunday Mornin'” and “Like to Get to Know You”.
Waylon Jennings 1937 (d.2002) – Country music singer/songwriter/musician who was first hired by Buddy Holly as his bass player. During the “Winter Dance Party Tour,” in Clear Lake, Iowa, Holly chartered a plane to arrive at the next venue. Jennings gave up his seat in the plane to J. P. Richardson, who was suffering from a cold. The flight that carried Holly, Richardson, and Ritchie Valens crashed, on the day later known as The Day the Music Died. During the 1970s, Jennings joined the Outlaw movement. He released critically acclaimed albums Lonesome, On’ry and Mean and Honky Tonk Heroes, followed by hit albums Dreaming My Dreams and Are You Ready for the Country. In 1976 he released the album Wanted! The Outlaws with Willie Nelson, Tompall Glaser, and Jessi Colter, the first platinum country music album. The success of the album was followed by Ol’ Waylon, and the hit song “Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love).” The album Waylon and Willie followed in 1978, producing the hit single “Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys.” Jennings released I’ve Always Been Crazy, also in 1978.
Harry Nilsson 1941 (d.1994) – Singer/songwriter who achieved the peak of his commercial success in the early 1970s. On all but his earliest recordings he is credited as Nilsson. He is known for the hit singles “Everybody’s Talkin'” (1969), “Without You” (1971), and “Coconut” (1972). Nilsson also wrote the song “One” made famous by the rock band Three Dog Night. His career is notable for the fact that he was one of the few major pop-rock recording artists of his era to achieve significant commercial success without ever performing major public concerts or undertaking regular tours.
Noddy Holder 1946 – was the lead vocalist and guitarist with the rock band Slade. Holder co-wrote most of Slade’s material with bassist, occasional keyboard player and violinist Jim Lea. Holder has been praised for his distinctive vocal style. Slade are best remembered for the single “Merry Xmas Everybody”written by Holder and Lea. Slade also recorded some ballads, “Everyday” and “How Does It Feel?” in particular being widely acclaimed.
Steve Walsh 1951 – singer-songwriter best known for his work as a member of the progressive rock band Kansas. He sings lead on Kansas’ four best-known hits: “Carry On Wayward Son,” “Dust in the Wind”, “Point of Know Return”, and “All I Wanted”, the last two of which he also co-wrote.
Bernie Shaw 1956 – Canadian singer, and since 1986, the lead vocalist for the British rock group Uriah Heep.
Scott Rockenfield 1963 – best known as the drummer for the progressive metal band Queensrÿche, which he co-founded in 1982, and the hard rock band Slave to the System.
Ella Fitzgerald 1996 (b.1917) – Jazz vocalist with a 3 octave voice, also known as the “First Lady of Song”and the “Queen of Jazz”. She began singing regularly with Chris Webb’s Orchestra through 1935 at Harlem’s Savoy Ballroom. Fitzgerald recorded several hit songs with them, including “Love and Kisses” and “(If You Can’t Sing It) You’ll Have to Swing It (Mr. Paganini)”. But it was her 1938 version of the nursery rhyme, “A-Tisket, A-Tasket”, a song she co-wrote, that brought her wide public acclaim. Her 1945 scat recording of “Flying Home” arranged by Vic Schoen would later be described by The New York Times as “one of the most influential vocal jazz records of the decade….Where other singers, most notably Louis Armstrong, had tried similar improvisation, no one before Miss Fitzgerald employed the technique with such dazzling inventiveness.” Her bebop recording of “Oh, Lady Be Good!” (1947) was similarly popular and increased her reputation as one of the leading jazz vocalists.
Lamont Dozier 1941 – Songwriter/record producer who has co-written and produced many US Billboard #1 hits as a member of Holland–Dozier–Holland, the songwriting and production team responsible for much of the Motown. Along with Brian Holland, Dozier served as the team’s musical arranger and producer, whilst Eddie Holland concentrated mainly on lyrics and vocal production. They wrote and produced scores of songs for Motown artists, including 25 Number 1 hit singles, including “(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave” for Martha and the Vandellas and “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You)” for Marvin Gaye. Their most celebrated productions were singles for the Four Tops and The Supremes, including 10 out of The Supremes’ 12 US No. 1 singles, such as “Baby Love”, “Stop! In the Name of Love”, and “You Keep Me Hangin’ On”.
Eddie Levert 1942 – Lead vocalist of the soul/funk/R&B vocal group, The O’Jays who formed in 1958. They scored their first million-seller with, “Back Stabbers”, from the album of the same name. By this time, this album produced several more hit singles, including “992 Arguments,” “Sunshine,” “Time To Get Down,” and the #1 pop smash, “Love Train”.
Iain Matthews 1946 – Singer/songwriter/musician who performed mainly as a solo act, although he was a member of Fairport Convention during the early period when they were heavily influenced by American West Coast folk rock. In the Spring of 1967, Matthews was recruited by Ashley Hutchings as a male vocalist for Fairport Convention, where he duetted first with Judy Dyble, and then with Sandy Denny.
Gino Vanelli 1952 – Singer/songwriter/musician who was best known in the 1970’s-80’s for his hit songs, “People Gotta Move”, “I Just Wanna Stop”, “Crazy Life,” “Powerful People,” “Storm at Sunup,” “The Gist of the Gemini,” and “A Pauper in Paradise”, “Black Cars”. On 15 February 1975, Vannelli became the second Caucasian performer to appear on Soul Train (Dennis Coffey appeared on 8 January 1972). This was his television debut. With his records climbing the charts, Vannelli toured as the opening act for Stevie Wonder.
Garry Roberts 1954 – is the former lead guitarist with the Irish band, The Boomtown Rats, which came into being in 1976. He and Johnnie Fingers (Moylett) had decided to put a band together and, between them, they recruited the other four members, Briquette, Cott, Crowe and Geldof. They were best remembered for their 1979 #1 hit song “I Don’t Like Mondays”. After The Boomtown Rats broke up in 1986, Roberts worked with Simply Red, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and Flesh For Lulu in the role of sound engineer on tours in the UK and US.
James Honeyman-Scott 1982 (b.1956) – Guitarist/songwriter and founding member of the band The Pretenders. Their self-titled debut album was released at the end of December 1979 and was a success with the hit songs, “Precious”, “Brass In Pocket”, “The Phone Call”, “Up The Neck” and “Tattooed Love Boys”.
Kristen Pfaff 1994 (b.1967) – best known as the bassist for alternative rock band Hole from 1993 to 1994. In 1993, Pfaff moved to Seattle, Washington, to work with the other members of Hole on Live Through This, the major-label follow-up to Pretty On The Inside. The band’s new line-up – Love, Erlandson, Pfaff and Patty Schemel on drums – entered the studio in early 1993 to begin rehearsals. “That’s when we took off,” Eric Erlandson said of Pfaff joining. “All of a sudden we became a real band.”
John Wolters 1997 (b.1945) – was the drummer of Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show from 1973-1985 who enjoyed considerable commercial success in the 1970’s with hit singles including “Sylvia’s Mother”, “The Cover of the Rolling Stone”, “A Little Bit More” and “When You’re in Love with a Beautiful Woman”.
Cliff Gallup 1930 (d.1988) – was an electric guitarist, who played rock and roll in the band Gene Vincent and his Blue Caps in the 1950’s. He played on 35 tracks with Vincent, including his biggest hit “Be-Bop-A-Lula”, and established a reputation as one of the most technically proficient guitarists in early rock and roll. He is remembered principally for his influence on such guitarists as Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck. The latter recorded an album of Gene Vincent songs, Crazy Legs, in 1993 considered by music critics to be a tribute to Gallup and Vincent.
Barry Manilow 1943 – Singer/songwriter/producer who is best known for such recordings as “Mandy”, “Can’t Smile Without You”, and “Copacabana (At the Copa)”. In 1978, five of his albums were on the best-seller charts simultaneously, a feat equalled only by Herb Alpert, Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen and Johnny Mathis. Despite being a songwriter in his own right, several of Manilow’s commercial successes were with songs by others. In addition to “Mandy”, other hits he did not write or compose include “Tryin’ to Get the Feeling Again” (by David Pomerantz), “Weekend in New England” (by Randy Edelman), “Ships” (by Ian Hunter), “Looks Like We Made It” (by Richard Kerr and Will Jennings), “Can’t Smile Without You” and “Ready to Take a Chance Again”. in addition, his number 1 hit “I Write The Songs” was composed by Bruce Johnston of The Beach Boys).
Chris Spedding 1944 – one of the UK’s most versatile session guitarists, and has had a long career on two continents that saw him tackle nearly every style of rock and roll, as well as sporadically attempting a solo career. He was a session player on Harry Nilsson’s breakthrough album, Nilsson Schmilsson. In 1971 he also played on Coming from Reality by Sixto Rodriguez, who was later the subject of the 2012 documentary Searching for Sugar Man. During 1972-74 Spedding played a central role in Sharks, initially with ex-Free bassist Andy Fraser.They recorded two albums and toured with Roxy Music. After that, he toured and recorded with John Cale. He also played with Roy Harper’s occasional backing band Trigger, notably on 1975’s HQ album. In 1975 Spedding had a Top 20 solo hit in the UK with “Motorbikin'”. He has also appeared and recorded with Bryan Ferry, Roxy Music, Elton John, Brian Eno, Jack Bruce, Nick Mason and Katie Melua, amongst many others.
Gregg Rolie 1947 – Keyboardist/organist/singer, who is one of the founding members of the bands Santana, The Storm, Abraxas Pool and Journey, for whom he was the original lead singer. He currently performs with his Gregg Rolie Band. A year after graduating from high school in 1965, Rolie joined Carlos Santana and others to form Santana. He was the lead vocalist on Santana’s hits “Black Magic Woman” and “Evil Ways”. In 1973 Rolie joined a new band with ex-Santana guitarist Neal Schon; this became Journey. On Journey and Look into the Future, he was lead vocalist, and on Next he shared those duties with guitarist Neal Schon. After Steve Perry joined the band in 1977, Rolie sang co-lead vocals on several songs on the albums Infinity, Evolution, and Departure.
Danny Cedrone 1954 (b.1920) – Guitarist and bandleader, best known for his work with Bill Haley & His Comets on their epochal “Rock Around the Clock” in 1954 and he was paid only $21 for his work on the session, as at that time Haley chose not to hire a full-time guitarist for his group. Cedrone would also play on the June 7, 1954 recording session for Haley’s version of “Shake, Rattle and Roll” although he was not allotted the chance for another notable guitar solo.
David Edward Sutch 1999 (b.1940) – also known as “Screaming Lord Sutch, 3rd Earl of Harrow”, or simply “Screaming Lord Sutch”, was a musician from the United Kingdom. He was the founder of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party and served as its leader from 1983 to 1999. Screaming Lord Sutch and the Savages were a British rock group from the early Sixties, sporting an ever-changing line-up of musicians and a taste for horror themes and zany humour. Someregard them as forerunners of both The Sex Pistols and Monty Python. The group was founded by drummer Carlo Little, who was a friend of Screaming Lord Sutch. Of the many musicians that would play with the Savages over the years, some would go onto major stardom in their own right, most notably Jimmy Page, Ritchie Blackmore, Jeff Beck, Noel Redding, Jon Lord, Matthew Fisher, Ian Hunter, Adrian Gurvitz, actor Paul Nicholas, and Nicky Hopkins.
Sir James Paul McCartney 1942 – Singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who along with John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, gained worldwide fame as a member of the Beatles, and his collaboration with Lennon is one of the most celebrated songwriting partnerships of the 20th century. After the band’s break-up, he pursued a solo career, later forming Wings with his first wife, Linda, and singer-songwriter Denny Laine. Guinness World Records described McCartney as the “most successful composer and recording artist of all time”, with 60 gold discs and sales of over 100 million albums and 100 million singles. More than 2,200 artists have covered his Beatles song “Yesterday“, more than any other song in history. We could ramble on about this man’s musical contributions and what he has meant to the world of music as we know it, but if you don’t already know at least a little bit about this then where on earth have you been for the last 50 years or so 😉
Carl Radle 1942 (d.1980) – Bass guitarist who toured and recorded with many of the most influential recording artists of the late 1960′s and 1970′s. Ultimately, Radle was best known for his lifetime association with Eric Clapton, starting in 1969 with Delaney and Bonnie and Friends and 1970 with Derek and the Dominos, recording alongside drummer Jim Gordon, guitarist Duane Allman, and keyboardist Bobby Whitlock. In 1970 he took part in Joe Cocker’s famous Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour. He worked on all of Clapton’s solo projects from 1970 until 1979 and was a member of Clapton’s touring band Eric Clapton & His Band from 1974 through 1979.
Rod de’Ath 1950 – Was best known for his role as drummer with Irish guitarist Rory Gallagher in the 1970’s. De’Ath was playing with the band Killing Floor when he was offered the job as a temporary substitute for Rory Gallagher’s drummer Wilgar Campbell for a leg of a European tour in 1972. When Campbell left permanently, de’Ath was asked to join full-time. He stayed with Gallagher, performing on several albums, until 1978 when he and keyboard player Lou Martin left the band. He played on what IMO is some of Rory’s best albums between 1973-76.
Dizzy Reed 1963 – is best known for his tenure as the keyboardist, pianist and percussionist for the rock band Guns N’ Roses, with whom he has played, toured and recorded since 1990. Aside from frontman Axl Rose, Reed is the longest-standing and only member of Guns N’ Roses to remain from the band’s Use Your Illusion era. As a member of Guns N’ Roses, Reed has become well known for his keyboard, piano and backing vocal work during live performances, music videos and on such songs as “Dust N’ Bones”, “Live and Let Die”, “Bad Obsession” “November Rain”, “Garden of Eden”, “Don’t Damn Me”, “Bad Apples”, “Civil War”, “14 Years”, “Yesterdays”, “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door”, “Get in the Ring”, “Pretty Tied Up” and “Locomotive”.
Blake Shelton 1976 – Country music singer who made his debut with the single “Austin” which was released as the lead-off single from his self-titled debut album, “Austin” went on to spend five weeks at Number One on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. His second and third albums, 2003’s The Dreamer and 2004’s Blake Shelton’s Barn & Grill, were each certified gold. Shelton’s fourth album, Pure BS, was issued in 2007, and re-issued in 2008 with a cover of Michael Bublé’s pop hit “Home”. A fifth album, Startin’ Fires, was released in November 2008. It was followed by the extended plays Hillbilly Bone and All About Tonight in 2010, and the albums Red River Blue in 2011 and Based on a True Story… in 2013. Shelton is also known for his role as a judge on the televised singing competitions Nashville Star, Clash of the Choirs, and The Voice, having held this role on the latter since its inception. He is also the husband of country singer Miranda Lambert.
Hank Medress 2007 (b.1938) – Singer and record producer who joined a doo-wop group in 1955 called the Linc-Tones, which also included Neil Sedaka.After Sedaka’s departure, the group reformed with additional singers as The Tokens. The Tokens achieved a number 1 chart success in 1961 with their arrangement of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”, as well as other minor hits. Medress and the Tokens also were producers on hits for the Chiffons, such as “He’s So Fine”. After leaving the Tokens, Medress co-produced (with Dave Appell) many of Tony Orlando and Dawn’s hits as well as Melissa Manchester’s LP. Later, he worked with David Johansen, Rick Springfield, Dan Hill, and Richard Simmons. He was also president of EMI Music Publishing Canada, from 1990 to 1992.
Clarence Clemons 2011 (b.1942) – also known as The Big Man, was an American musician and actor. From 1972 until his death, he was a prominent member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, playing the tenor saxophone. He released several solo albums and in 1985, had a hit single with “You’re a Friend of Mine”, a duet with Jackson Browne. As a guest musician he also featured on Aretha Franklin’s classic “Freeway of Love” and on Twisted Sister’s “Be Chrool to Your Scuel” as well as performing in concert with The Grateful Dead and Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band. The story of how Clemons first met Bruce Springsteen has entered into E Street Band mythology. “The E Street Shuffle” with a monologue about how they met and the event was also immortalized in “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out”. Throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s Clemons featured prominently on Springsteen albums.On Born to Run he provided memorable saxophone solos on the title track, “Thunder Road” and “Jungleland” while Darkness on the Edge of Town featured another notable solo on “Badlands”. The River saw Clemons feature on songs such as “The Ties That Bind”, “Sherry Darling”, “I Wanna Marry You”, “Drive All Night” and “Independence Day” while Born in the U.S.A. saw solos on “Bobby Jean” and “I’m Goin’ Down”.
Tommy DeVito 1928 – Musician and singer, best known as a founding member and the lead guitarist of the rock band The Four Seasons who in 1960 were known as The Four Lovers and consisted of DeVito and Frankie Valli along with Bob Gaudio and Nick Massi. This is the lineup which adopted the name “The Four Seasons” and began a string of hits with the 1962 #1 single “Sherry.” The Four Seasons followed up “Sherry” with several million-selling hits, including “Big Girls Don’t Cry” (their second #1 hit), “Walk Like a Man” (their third #1), “Candy Girl”, “Ain’t That a Shame”, and several others. In addition, they released a Christmas album in December 1962 and charted with a unique rendition of “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town”.
Al Wilson 1939 (d.2008) – Soul singer known for the million-selling #1 hit, “Show and Tell” and is also remembered for his Northern soul anthem, “The Snake” in 1968. In 1969, Wilson charted with his cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Lodi” (U.S. #67), and Rivers’ own “Poor Side Of Town” (U.S. #75).
Elaine “Spanky” McFarlane 1942 – Singer of the 1960’s folk-rock band Spanky and Our Gang which derives its name from Hal Roach’s popular Our Gang comedies of the 1930’s (known to modern audiences as The Little Rascals). The group was known for its vocal harmonies. Their first album was released in 1967, and included three popular songs that were released as singles. These were “Sunday Will Never Be the Same” (their biggest hit, which reached number No. 9 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart in the summer of 1967), followed by “Making Every Minute Count” (reached No. 31) and “Lazy Day” (reached No. 14). They also had hits with “Sunday Mornin'” and “Like to Get to Know You” amongst others.
Peter Bardens 1945 (d.2002) – Keyboardist and a founding member of the British progressive rock group Camel. He played organ, piano, synthesizers and mellotron and wrote songs with Andrew Latimer. Bardens worked alongside Rod Stewart, Mick Fleetwood and Van Morrison and recorded solo albums.
Ann Wilson 1950 – Lead singer, flute player, songwriter, and occasional guitar playerof the rock band Heart which also featured her sister Nancy. The band first found success in Canada and later in the United States and worldwide. Their debut album, Dreamboat Annie produced the two hit singles “Crazy on You” and “Magic Man”. Then they had further hits with the songs, “Dreamboat Annie”, “Barracuda”, “Heartless”, “Straight On”, “Dog and Butterfly” amongst others.
Simon Wright 1963 – Drummer best known for his time with rock n’ roll bands AC/DC and Dio. He was also the drummer for the band Rhino Bucket and is currently playing for Geoff Tate’s version of Queensrÿche. AC/DC recorded three albums with Wright in the mid-late 80’s; Fly on the Wall, Who Made Who and Blow Up Your Video. Wright left the group in November 1989 to join Dio, and was replaced by Chris Slade. He had two stints with Dio, 1990–91 and 1998–2010. With the band he has recorded four studio albums (Lock up the Wolves, Magica, Killing the Dragon and Master of the Moon) and two live albums (Evil or Divine – Live In New York City and Holy Diver – Live).
Duane Roland 2006 (b.1943) – Guitarist for the Southern hard rock band Molly Hatchet. He was a member of the band from its founding in the mid-1970’s until his departure in 1990. During that time he recorded seven albums with the band. He is credited with co-writing some of the band’s biggest hits, including “Bloody Reunion” and “Boogie No More”. After leaving the band he played with the Southern Rock Allstars and Gator Country, which included many of the founding members of Molly Hatchet.
Danny Cedrone 1920 (d.1954) – Guitarist and bandleader, best known for his work with Bill Haley & His Comets on their epochal “Rock Around the Clock” in 1954 and he was paid only $21 for his work on the session, as at that time Haley chose not to hire a full-time guitarist for his group. Cedrone would also play on the June 7, 1954 recording session for Haley’s version of “Shake, Rattle and Roll” although he was not allotted the chance for another notable guitar solo.
Chet Atkins 1924 (d.2001) – Guitarist/record producer who, along with Owen Bradley, created the smoother country music style known as the Nashville sound, which expanded country’s appeal to adult pop music fans as well. Atkins’s picking style, inspired by Merle Travis, Django Reinhardt, George Barnes, Les Paul, and (Mother) Maybelle Carter brought him admirers within and outside the country scene, both in the United States and internationally. Atkins produced records for The Browns, Porter Wagoner, Norma Jean, Dolly Parton, Dottie West, Perry Como, Elvis Presley, the Everly Brothers, Eddy Arnold, Don Gibson, Jim Reeves, Jerry Reed, Skeeter Davis, Waylon Jennings and many others. Among many honors, Atkins received 14 Grammy Awards as well as the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, nine Country Music Association Instrumentalist of the Year awards, was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum.
Billy Guy 1936 (d.2002) – best known as a member of The Coasters, singing lead on such hits as “Searchin’,” “Little Egypt,” “Run Red Run,” “Wait A Minute,” among others. Before Guy joined The Coasters in 1955,he was part of a comedy singing duo called “Bip and Bop.” One single called “Ding Ding Dong” b/w “Du-Wada-Du” was released on Aladdin Records in 1955. Guy also made a number of solo records during the 1960’s and 1970’s. He did about a dozen or so solo recordings in 1963 for Double-L Records which later show up on collections as by The Coasters, most notably the albums “Hungry” (1971) and “It Ain’t Sanitary” (1973).
Mickie Most 1938 (d.2003) – Record producer with a string of hit singles with acts such as The Animals, Arrows, Herman’s Hermits, Donovan, Lulu, Suzi Quatro, Hot Chocolate and the Jeff Beck Group, often issued on his own RAK Records label.
Brian Wilson 1942 – Musician and the leader, lead vocalist, bassist and chief songwriter of the Beach Boys. Besides being their primary composer, he also functioned as the band’s main producer and arranger. After signing with Capitol Records in mid-1962, Wilson wrote or co-wrote more than two dozen Top 40 hits for the Beach Boys. In the mid-1960s, Wilson used his increasingly creative ambitions to compose and produce Pet Sounds, considered one of the greatest albums of all time.The tracks “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” and “God Only Knows” showcased Wilson’s growing mastery as a composer, arranger, and producer. “Surfin’ Safari”, “409”, “Surfer Girl”, “Surfin’ U.S.A.”, “In My Room”, “Catch a Wave”; and “Little Deuce Coupe” are just a few of the major hits that The Beach Boys had.
Anne Murray 1945 – Canadian singer in pop, country and adult contemporary music whose albums have sold over 54 million copies worldwide as of 2012. Murray was the first Canadian female solo singer to reach No. 1 on the U.S. charts, and also the first to earn a Gold record for one of her signature songs, “Snowbird” (1970).She is often cited as the woman who paved the way for other Canadian international success stories such as Alanis Morissette, Nelly Furtado, Céline Dion, Sarah McLachlan and Shania Twain.She is also the first woman and the first Canadian to win “Album of the Year” at the Country Music Association Awards for her 1984 album A Little Good News. During the 1970’s and early 1980’s, her hits included Kenny Loggins’ “Danny’s Song” (1972) and “A Love Song” (1973); “He Thinks I Still Care” and her Top 10 cover of The Beatles’ “You Won’t See Me” (1974); her all-time career-peaking No. 1 Hot 100 hit “You Needed Me” (1978).
Alan Longmuir 1948 – was the Scottish bass guitarist for the 1970’s pop group, the Bay City Rollers. His younger brother Derek Longmuir was a founding member and drummer for the group.
Lionel Richie 1949 – Singer/songwriter/musician/record producer and actor. From 1968, he was a member of the musical group Commodores signed to Motown Records. Richie made his solo debut in 1982 with the album Lionel Richie and number-one hit “Truly”. The Commodores had a danceable, funky sound, as in such tracks as “Machine Gun” and “Brick House.” Over time, Richie wrote and sang more romantic, easy-listening ballads such as “Easy,” “Three Times a Lady,” “Still,” and the tragic breakup ballad “Sail On.” A few more of his successful hits included, “Hello”, “Say You, Say Me”, for the film White Nights, “Dancing on the Ceiling” (U.S. #2), “Ballerina Girl” (U.S. #7), and “Se La”.
Alan Shacklock 1951 – Guitarist/composer/arranger and recording producer who began playing guitar as a child, first playing with the band The Juniors with Rolling Stones’ guitarist Mick Taylor and Jethro Tull bassist John Glascock and then with Chris Farlowe’s Thunderbirds. In 1969 Shacklock played in a band called The Gods, and in 1971 formed the British band Babe Ruth. He worked as the band’s songwriter and producer from 1971–75, and then left the band to work as a solo songwriter and record producer. He has received three nominations for Grammy awards and has produced a number of silver, gold and platinum recordings for artists including Mike Oldfield, Bonnie Tyler, Jeff Beck, Meat Loaf, The Alarm, Roger Daltrey, JoBoxers and Sir Andrew Lloyd-Webber.
Michael Anthony 1954 – Founding member and the bassist and backing vocalist for the band Chickenfoot with Sammy Hagar, Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith and guitarist Joe Satriani. He was the former bass player for the hard rock band Van Halen.
Kelly Johnson 1958 (d.2007) – was a guitarist, widely known in the UK in the early 1980’s as the lead guitarist of the all-female British heavy metal band Girlschool. They had their best UK chart success in 1980 and 1981, with the EP St. Valentine’s Day Massacre and the album Hit and Run, but their success soon declined and their approach to the US market with the album Play Dirty was not as successful as hoped.
John Taylor 1960 – musician who is best known as the bass guitarist and co-founder of pop rock band Duran Duran who were one of the most popular groups in the world during the 1980’s due to their revolutionary music videos that played in heavy rotation in the early days of MTV. Taylor played with Duran Duran from its founding in 1978 until 1997. In May they released their second album, Rio, which scored four UK Top Twenty singles with “My Own Way”, “Hungry Like The Wolf“, “Save A Prayer“, and the title song “Rio”. Taylor also founded two supergroup side projects: Power Station and Neurotic Outsiders.
Stone Gossard 1966 – Musician who serves as the rhythm and additional lead guitarist for the American rock band Pearl Jam. Along with Jeff Ament, Mike McCready, and Eddie Vedder, he is one of the founding members of Pearl Jam. Their debut album Ten produced the hit singles “Alive”, “Even Flow”, and “Jeremy”. Ten stayed on the Billboard charts for more than two years, and has gone on to become one of the highest-selling rock records ever, going 13x platinum. Their follow-up second album Vs. included the singles “Go”, “Daughter”, “Animal”, and “Dissident”.
Lawrence Payton 1997 (b.1938) – was an American tenor, songwriter, vocal arranger and record producer for the popular Motown quartet, the Four Tops. An excellent singer in his own right, Payton sang lead on the songs “Feel Free”(from the Catfish album), “Until You Love Someone” and “The Girl From Ipanema” from the Four Tops Live! album (from their Motown days) but he was often overshadowed by the more popular Levi Stubbs.
Eumir Deodato 1943 – Brazilian pianist, composer, record producer and arranger, primarily based in the jazz realm but who historically has been known for eclectic melding of big band and combo jazz with varied elements of rock/pop, R&B/funk, Brazilian/Latin, and symphonic or orchestral music. His nine-minute funky version of Richard Strauss’ Also Sprach Zarathustra, entitled “Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001)”, won the 1974 Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance. It went to No. 2 in the pop charts in the US, No. 3 in Canada.
Ray Davies 1944 – best known as lead singer and songwriter for The Kinks, which he led with his younger brother, Dave. Their first two hit singles in 1964 were, “You Really Got Me” and “All Day and All of the Night”. However, by 1965, this raucous, hard-driving early style gradually gave way to the softer and more introspective sound of “Tired of Waiting for You”, “Nothin’ in the World Can Stop Me Worryin’ ‘Bout That Girl”, “Set Me Free”, “I Go to Sleep” and “Ring the Bells”. Beginning with “A Well Respected Man” and “Where Have All the Good Times Gone” (both recorded in the summer of 1965), Davies’ lyrics assumed a new sociological character. They went on from there to have many other hits.
Chris Britton 1944 – was the lead guitarist for the 1960’s band The Troggs. Their most famous songs include the Hot 100 chart topper “Wild Thing”, “With a Girl Like You” and “Love is All Around”. “Wild Thing” is ranked #257 on the Rolling Stone magazine’s list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and was an influence on garage rock and punk rock.
Jon Hiseman 1944 – Drummer/recording engineer/record producer and music publisher. In the mid-1960’s Hiseman played in sessions such as the early Arthur Brown single, “Devil’s Grip”. In 1966 he replaced Ginger Baker in the Graham Bond Organisation and also played for a brief spell with Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames. He then joined John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers in 1968 playing on the iconic album ‘Bare Wires’. In April 1968 he left to form what has been critically claimed as the “seminal” jazz rock/progressive rock band, Colosseum.Colosseum disbanded in November 1971,although Hiseman later formed Colosseum II with Don Airey and Gary Moore in 1975.
Brenda Holloway 1946 – Singer/songwriter, who was a recording artist for Motown Records during the 1960’s. Her best-known recordings are the soul hits, “Every Little Bit Hurts”, “When I’m Gone”, and “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy.” The latter, which she co-wrote, was later widely popularized when it became a top ten hit for Blood, Sweat & Tears.
Joey Molland 1947 – Composer and rock guitarist whose recording career spans four decades. He is best known as a member of Badfinger, the most successful of the acts he performed with. He made guest appearances on two George Harrison albums, All Things Must Pass and The Concert For Bangla Desh, and the John Lennon album Imagine.
Don Airey 1948 – has been the keyboardist in the rock band Deep Purple since 2002, succeeding Jon Lord. He has had a long and productive career, playing with such acts as Gary Moore, Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, Jethro Tull, Whitesnake, Saxon, Wishbone Ash, Steve Vai, Colosseum II, Sinner, Michael Schenker, Rainbow, Empire, Thin Lizzy, Brian May and Living Loud. He has also worked with Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Joey Kramer 1950 – is the drummer for the American hard rock band Aerosmith. Kramer is credited with originating the name Aerosmith. In his memoir, Joey revealed that he idly conceived the name Aerosmith while listening to Harry Nilsson’s album Aerial Ballet in 1968, two years before the band was formed. Kramer insists that there is no connection between the name “Aerosmith” and Sinclair Lewis’ novel Arrowsmith.
Nils Lofgren 1951 – songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. Along with his work as a solo artist, he has been a member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band since 1984, a former member of Crazy Horse, and founder/frontman of the band Grin. Lofgren joined Neil Young’s band at age 17, playing piano and guitar on the album After the Gold Rush. In 1989 Springsteen broke up the E Street Band, but Lofgren and Van Zandt rejoined when Springsteen revived the band in 1999 for their Reunion Tour, followed by The Rising and another massive tour in 2002 and 2003, then again for the Magic album and world tour of 2007/2008, and most recently in 2012 for the Wrecking Ball Tour.
Mark Brzezicki 1957 – is a rock drummer, who is primarily known for his work with Big Country, and was a member of the groups The Cult, Ultravox, and Procol Harum. He has also played with Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown, Midge Ure, Fish, The Pretenders and many others. He was also the drummer on Shine, the second and final English language album by Frida of ABBA.
Kathy Mattea 1959 – is an American country music and bluegrass performer who often brings folk, Celtic and traditional country sounds to her music. Active since 1983 as a recording artist, she has recorded seventeen albums and has charted more than thirty singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks charts. This total includes the number one hits “Goin’ Gone”, “Eighteen Wheels and a Dozen Roses”, “Come From the Heart” and “Burnin’ Old Memories”, as well as twelve additional Top Ten singles.
Angue MacLise 1979 (b.1938) – was an American percussionist, composer, poet, occultist and calligrapher probably best known as the first drummer for the Velvet Underground. John Cale describes MacLise as “living on the Angus calendar”, causing him to fail to show up to the venues for gigs until hours or sometimes days after the rest of the band had finished performing. When the opportunity of the band’s first paying gig in November 1965 arose, MacLise promptly quit, suggesting the group were selling out. A student of Aleister Crowley (he was working on a script for a film version of Crowley’s Diary of a Drug Fiend before he died), he began to blend Tibetan mysticism with his music to create sound through various drone techniques.
John Lee Hooker 2001 (b.1917) – was a highly influential blues singer-songwriter and guitarist who rose to prominence performing his own unique style of what was originally a unique brand of country blues. He developed a ‘talking blues’ style that was his trademark. Though similar to the early Delta blues, his music was metrically free. John Lee Hooker could be said to embody his own unique genre of the blues, often incorporating the boogie-woogie piano style and a driving rhythm into his blues guitar playing and singing. His best known songs include “Boogie Chillen'” (1948), “I’m in the Mood” (1951) and “Boom Boom” (1962), the first two reaching #1 on the Billboard R&B chart.
Kris Kristofferson 1936 – Country music singer/songwriter/musician and film actor. He is known for such hits as “Me and Bobby McGee”, “For the Good Times”, “Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down”, and “Help Me Make It Through the Night”. Kristofferson is the sole writer of most of his songs, and he has collaborated with various other figures of the Nashville scene such as Shel Silverstein. In 1985, Kristofferson joined fellow country artists Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash in forming the country music supergroup “The Highwaymen”. In 2004, Kristofferson was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Peter Asher 1944 – Guitarist/singer/manager and record producer who first came to prominence in the 1960’s as a member of the pop music vocal duo Peter and Gordon, before going on to a successful career as a manager and record producer. Peter and Gordon recorded several songs written by McCartney but credited to Lennon/McCartney. Those hits included “A World Without Love” (US & UK No.1), “Nobody I Know”, “I Don’t Want To See You Again” and “Woman”. With “Woman”, McCartney used the pseudonym Bernard Webb to see if he could have a hit song without his name attached.
Howard Kaylan 1947 – Rock and roll musician, best known as a founding member and lead singer of the 1960’s band The Turtles, and as “Eddie” in the 1970’s rock band Flo & Eddie, and was also a members of Frank Zappa’s band The Mother of Invention. Flo and Eddie can be heard singing with John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, Ramones, Blondie, Duran Duran, The Psychedelic Furs, T.Rex, Alice Cooper and many more.
Todd Rundgren 1948 – Multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and record producer whose best-known songs include “Hello It’s Me” and “I Saw the Light”, which have heavy rotation on classic rock radio stations, and “Bang the Drum All Day”, which is featured in many sports arenas, commercials, and movie trailers. During the 1970s and 1980s, Rundgren engineered and/or produced many notable albums for other acts, including Straight Up by Badfinger, Stage Fright by The Band, We’re an American Band by Grand Funk Railroad, Bat Out of Hell by Meat Loaf, New York Dolls by New York Dolls, and Skylarking by XTC.
Larry Junstrom 1949 – is the bass guitarist of the American rock band 38 Special.He was also one of the founding members of the Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd. Junstrom was the bass guitarist of Lynyrd Skynyrd from the its formation in 1964, until being replaced by Greg T. Walker in 1972. Donnie Van Zant, the younger brother of the Lynyrd Skynyrd leader, Ronnie Van Zant, formed 38 Special in 1975, with Junstrom joining as the bass guitarist in 1979.
Derek Forbes 1956 – Bassist and sometime guitarist, best known for his work with Simple Minds (with whom he played from their 1979 debut album, Life in a Day until shortly after their 1985 hit, “Don’t You (Forget About Me)”). Forbes is now the bass player with Scottish band Big Country, replacing long standing Tony Butler) who retired from the band.
Garry Beers 1957 – is an Australian musician and the founding bass guitarist for the new wave rock group INXS. Beers has co-written tracks for INXS including “Listen Like Thieves”, “Don’t Change”, and “Perfect Strangers”.
Alan Anton 1959 – Bass player of the Canadian alternative country/blues/folk rock band, Cowboy Junkies. The group’s fame spread with their second album, The Trinity Session, which was recorded live on a single Calrec stereo microphone at the Church of the Holy Trinity in downtown Toronto by producer Peter J. Moore. This album also included a cover of The Velvet Underground’s “Sweet Jane” based on the 1969 Live album version rather than the studio version from Loaded. The single featured in the films Natural Born Killers and The Good Girl.
Steven Page 1970 – Canadian musician, who along with Ed Robertson, was a founding member, lead singer, guitarist, and a primary songwriter of the music group Barenaked Ladies (BNL); he left the band in 2009 to pursue a solo career. BNL are best known for their hit singles, “One Week”, “The Old Apartment”, “Pinch Me”, “If I Had $1000000”, “Brian Wilson”; as well as the theme for the sitcom The Big Bang Theory. All but one of the songs on the band’s first album had a songwriting or co-writing credit for Page. He is credited on every song from both Maroon (2000) (other than the album’s hidden track) and Everything to Everyone (2003). In all, 97 of the 113 songs on the band’s primary studio albums during his tenure (not including its holiday or children’s albums) are credited or co-credited to Page.
Kripp Johnson 1990 (b.1936) – was a singer for doo-wop group The Del-Vikings from 1956 to the 1980’s. The group was notable for being one of the few racially integrated musical groups to attain success in the 1950’s. Their first hit came in 1957 with “Ultra High Fidelity”, followed by “Come Go with Me”. The group’s biggest hits have been used in such films as American Graffiti, American Hot Wax, The Hollywood Knights, Diner, Stand By Me, and Joe Versus the Volcano.
June Carter Cash 1929 (d.2003) – Singer/dancer/songwriter/actress/comedian and author who was a member of the Carter Family and the second wife of singer Johnny Cash. She played the guitar, banjo, harmonica and autoharp, and acted in several films and television shows. As a singer, she had both a solo career and a career singing with first her family and later her husband. As a solo artist, she became somewhat successful with upbeat country tunes of the 1950’s like “Jukebox Blues” and, with her exaggerated breaths, the comedic hit “No Swallerin’ Place” by Frank Loesser. June also recorded “The Heel” in the 1960’s along with many other songs.
Niki Sullivan 1937 (d.2004) – was a rock and roll guitar player, born in South Gate, California. He was one of the three original members of Buddy Holly’s backing band, The Crickets. Though he lost interest within a year or two of his involvement, his guitar playing was an integral part of Holly’s early success. He performed on 27 of the 32 songs Holly recorded over his brief career. He also co-wrote a number of his own songs. While trying to record “Peggy Sue” after many dissatisfying takes, Sullivan ended up kneeling next to Buddy while he played, and when cued flipped a switch on Holly’s Stratocaster, allowing him to break into the now-famous guitar solo. He also helped sing on back up and arrange the music to “Not Fade Away” (which he helped write), “I’m Gonna Love You Too”, “That’ll Be the Day” and “Maybe Baby”.
Stuart Sutcliffe 1940 (d.1962) – best known as the original bassist for the Beatles. Sutcliffe left the band to pursue his career as an artist, having previously attended the Liverpool College of Art. Sutcliffe and John Lennon are credited with inventing the name, “Beatals”, as they both liked Buddy Holly’s band, the Crickets.The band used this name for a while until John Lennon decided to change the name to “The Beatles”, from the word Beat. As a member of the group when it was a five-piece band, Sutcliffe is one of several people sometimes referred to as the “Fifth Beatle”.
Robert Hunter 1941 – Lyricist/singer/songwriter/translator, and poet, best known for his work with the Grateful Dead. The first lyrics he wrote for the Grateful Dead were composed while on LSD, and mailed to the band from Arizona: a suite that would later become “China Cat Sunflower”/”The Eleven” (these were originally performed together for a short time). “China Cat Sunflower” would later find a partner in “I Know You Rider”. After battling moderate drug addiction, he abandoned his Joycean/Western vision quest and joined his old friend’s band, the Grateful Dead, on the first weekend in September 1967, at the small Rio Nido, California gigs. The association was at first informal, but began on an auspicious note, as that weekend he wrote the first verse of one of his better-known songs, “Dark Star”.
Oz Bach 1939 (d.1998) – was a folk musician and guitarist for the 1960’s group Spanky and Our Gang. He left the band prior to the release of their second album Like to Get to Know You in 1968. He then began to work as an arranger for Linda Ronstadt, Steve Miller and Sérgio Mendes. In the late sixties, Bach joined band such as Wings, Spooner Summit, Tarantula.
Arthur Brown 1942 – Rock and roll musician best known for his flamboyant, theatrical style, wide ranging operatic vocal style and significant influence on Alice Cooper,Peter Gabriel, Marilyn Manson, George Clinton, Kiss, King Diamond, and Bruce Dickinson, among others. By 1968, the debut album, The Crazy World of Arthur Brown became a hit on both sides of the Atlantic. Produced by The Who’s manager Kit Lambert, and executive-produced by Pete Townshend on Track Records, the label begun by Lambert and Chris Stamp, it spun off an equally surprising hit single, “Fire”, and contained a version of “I Put a Spell on You” by Screaming Jay Hawkins, a similarly bizarre showman.
Jeff Beck 1944 – Guitarist who is one of the three noted guitarists to have played with The Yardbirds (the other two being Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page). Beck also formed The Jeff Beck Group and Beck, Bogert & Appice. Much of Beck’s recorded output has been instrumental, with a focus on innovative sound, and his releases have spanned genres ranging from blues rock, heavy metal, jazz fusion and an additional blend of guitar-rock and electronica. Although he recorded two hit albums (in 1975 and 1976) as a solo act, Beck has not established or maintained the sustained commercial success of many of his contemporaries and bandmates.Beck appears on albums by Mick Jagger, Tina Turner, Morrissey, Jon Bon Jovi, Malcom McLaren, Kate Bush, Roger Waters, Donovan, Stevie Wonder, Les Paul, Zucchero, Cyndi Lauper, Brian May, Stanley Clarke and ZZ Top. He was ranked 5th in Rolling Stone’s list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time” and the magazine has described him as “one of the most influential lead guitarists in rock”.MSNBC has called him a “guitarist’s guitarist”
Chris Wood 1944 (d.1983) – Self-taught musician on flute and saxophone and was a founding member of the English rock band Traffic, along with Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi, and Dave Mason. Wood also co-wrote several of Traffic’s songs, particularly during the earlier period of the band’s recording career. His most notable contribution is as the co-writer (with Steve Winwood and Jim Capaldi), of “Dear Mr. Fantasy”. He played with Jimi Hendrix in 1968, appearing on Electric Ladyland, and also appeared on the eponymous second album of Free and the Small Faces’ The Autumn Stone. In 1970, Wood and his wife, along with Steve Winwood, joined Ginger Baker’s Air Force, releasing one album before reforming Traffic. Wood remained with Traffic from the time of its 1970 reformation until its 1974 breakup. He played on John Martyn’s Inside Out (1973).
Colin Blunstone 1945 – Pop singer/songwriter, best known as a member of the pop group The Zombies, and for his participation on various albums with The Alan Parsons Project. Blunstone’s plaintive, wistful voice was one of the factors making The Zombies’ single, “She’s Not There” (written by fellow band member Rod Argent), a big hit worldwide. e had some success as a solo artist, notably in 1972 with “Say You Don’t Mind” (peaked at number 15 in the UK chart and written by future Wings member Denny Laine) and “I Don’t Believe in Miracles” (peaked at number 31 in the UK chart and written by Argent member Russ Ballard), both with string arrangements by Christopher Gunning.
Mick Fleetwood 1947 – Drummer and co-founder of the blues/rock and roll band Fleetwood Mac. His surname and that of John McVie formed the name of the band. Keyboard player Peter Bardens gave Fleetwood his first gig in Bardens’ band The Cheynes and from there he went to to stints in the Bo Street Runners, Peter Bs, Shotgun Express (with Rod Stewart), and John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. After being dismissed from the Bluesbreakers for repeated insobriety during gigs, Mick Fleetwood was asked a few months later by singer and guitarist Peter Green to join him along with bassist John McVie in his new band Fleetwood Mac. Since then about 20 original albums have been released under the name Fleetwood Mac, by far the most popular being the two mega-platinum sets the group put out in the late seventies: Fleetwood Mac and Rumours from which the songs “Go Your Own Way”, “Don’t Stop”, “Dreams”, and “You Make Loving Fun” were released as singles. Rumours is Fleetwood Mac’s most successful release; along with winning the Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1978, the record has sold over 45 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time. Rumours has received diamond certifications in several countries, including the US and Australia.
Mike de Albuquerque 1947 – was the bass player for Electric Light Orchestra from 1972-74 on the albums ELO 2, On the Third Day, The Night the Light Went On in Long Beach and some of Eldorado. He released two solo progressive rock albums, We May Be Cattle But We’ve All Got Names (1973) and Stalking The Sleeper (1976).
Patrick Moraz 1948 – is a progressive rock keyboard player. He is best known as the keyboardist for the progressive rock band Yes, from 1974 to 1976, and The Moody Blues from 1978 to 1991. On the Relayer album, Moraz brought in a more jazz/fusion sound that was a departure from Yes’ more classical approach. In 1975-76, all then-members of Yes released solo albums, including the Moraz album, titled Story of I (1976). Additionally he played on one track of Chris Squire’s solo album Fish Out of Water (1975). Moraz began touring with The Moody Blues on their Octave tour in 1978, replacing their former keyboardist Mike Pinder. He subsequently played on their 1981 album Long Distance Voyager, which reached #1 on the US charts. He continued touring and recording with the Moody Blues until 1991. During this time, Moraz was also credited as co-writer on the Moody Blues song “The Spirit”, along with drummer Graeme Edge, and it appeared on their 1986 album The Other Side of Life.
John Illsley 1949 – Musician who rose to fame as the bass guitarist of the critically acclaimed rock band Dire Straits. As one of the founding band members, with brothers and guitarists David and Mark Knopfler, and drummer Pick Withers, Illsley played a role in the development of Dire Straits’ sound. As well as playing bass on all the Dire Straits recordings, Illsley also contributed backing vocals, with David Knopfler, and both harmonized to Mark’s lead vocals and guitar in concert, and on the band’s first two studio albums, Dire Straits and Communiqué. Before Dire Straits disbanded, Illsley released two solo albums of his own, Never Told a Soul (1984) and Glass (1988). Knopfler contributed some of the guitar parts on both.
Andy McCluskey 1959 – Musician, songwriter and record producer.The frontman of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (OMD) who rose to fame with their fourth single “Enola Gay”, and founder of Atomic Kitten, McCluskey is an Ivor Novello Award-nominated songwriter who penned several major international hits for both acts.
Jeff Cease 1967 – best known as the lead guitarist of the American Blues-rock band The Black Crowes from 1988-1991. He appeared on their debut album Shake Your Money Maker. His last performance with the band was October 19, 1991 at Hammersmith Odeon in London. Jeff later formed the Nashville based band Bitter Pills. In 2008 he was hired by American Idol participant Bucky Covington for his own band.
JoJo Billingsley 2010 (b.1952) – was a singer, soloist, songwriter and recording artist. As a backing vocalist, Billingsley was best known for her work with the Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd. As one of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Honkettes, she toured with the band all over the world, from Japan to England. In December 1975, she was hired, along with Cassie Gaines and Leslie Hawkins, to be a backup singer for Lynyrd Skynyrd. The group’s leader Ronnie Van Zant dubbed them “The Honkettes”. An October 20, 1977 airplane crash killed several members of the band and road crew, but Billingsley was the only band member not on the flight. She stated that she had a dream two nights before the plane crashed, foreseeing the event. She attempted to warn the other band members not to get on the plane. According to Billingsley, this experience led her to become a born-again Christian. In 2005, she performed several times as “The Honkettes” in an alternative version of Lynyrd Skynyrd called “The Saturday Night Special Band” that included former Skynyrd members Ed King, Artimus Pyle and Leslie Hawkins, which helped raise money for Hurricane Katrina victims.
Alan Myers 2013 (b.1955) – was the third and most prominent drummer of the band Devo. Myers joined Devo in 1976 to replace Jim Mothersbaugh and left between 1986 and 1987 after the album Shout. According to the book “We Are Devo,” Myers cited a lack of creative fulfillment as his reason for leaving the group, something he had felt since Devo’s move to Los Angeles in the late 70s. He was replaced by David Kendrick of Sparks. Among all of Devo’s drummers, he is the one most associated with the band.
Eddie Floyd 1937 – Soul/R&B singer/songwriter, best known for his work on the Stax record label in the 1960’s and 1970’s and the song “Knock on Wood”, which became a disco hit for Amii Stewart in 1979. He wrote a hit song, “Comfort Me” recorded by Carla Thomas. He then teamed with Stax’s guitarist Steve Cropper to write songs for Wilson Pickett, including “Ninety-Nine and a Half (Won’t Do)” and “634-5789 (Soulsville USA)”. He scored several more hits on his own, including “I Never Found a Girl (To Love Me Like You Do)” and “Raise Your Hand”,which was covered by both Janis Joplin and Bruce Springsteen. Virtually every Stax artist recorded Floyd material, often co-written with either Steve Cropper or Booker T. Jones, including Sam & Dave (“You Don’t Know What You Mean to Me”), Rufus Thomas (“The Breakdown”), Otis Redding (“I Love You More Than Words Can Say”), and Johnnie Taylor’s “Just the One (I’ve Been Looking For)”.
Clint Warwick 1940 (d.2004) – was the original bassist for the rock band, The Moody Blues. The Moody Blues released one album with Warwick on bass, Go Now – The Moody Blues #1, with sleeve notes by Donovan. The album yielded the hit song, “Go Now”, which reached #1 in the UK in January 1965 and the Top Ten in the U.S.. Warwick took one co-lead vocal on that album with Denny Laine on the track, “I’ve Got A Dream”. Warwick was also on the E.P. ‘The Moody Blues’, and appeared on all their Decca singles, beginning with their debut; ‘Steal Your Heart Away’ (1964), then after ‘Go Now’, ‘I Don’t Want To Go on Without You’ (1965), and the Pinder-Laine composed: ‘Everyday’, ‘From The Bottom Of My Heart (I Love You)’ (both 1965) – the latter clearly anticipating the later vocal choral sound of ‘Nights in White Satin’ at the conclusion – plus ‘Boulevard De La Madeline’ (1966) up to ‘Life’s Not Life’ in 1966.
Carly Simon 1945 – Singer/songwriter/musician who rose to fame in the 1970s with a string of hit records; her 13 Top 40 hits include “Anticipation”, “You’re So Vain”, “Nobody Does It Better”, and “Coming Around Again”. Her 1988 hit “Let the River Run” was the first song in history to win a Grammy Award, an Academy Award, and a Golden Globe Award for a song both written and performed by a single artist.
Allen Lanier 1946 – is an original member of Blue Öyster Cult who played keyboards and rhythm guitar. Lanier wrote several songs for Blue Öyster Cult albums, including “True Confessions”, “Tenderloin”, “Searchin’ for Celine”, “In Thee” and “Lonely Teardrops”. Lanier first performed with the band (then known as Soft White Underbelly) in 1967. He left the group in 1985, and was replaced by Tommy Zvoncheck.
Ian McDonald 1946 – Multi-instrumentalist, best known as a founding member of progressive rock group King Crimson, formed in 1969, and of the hard rock band Foreigner in 1976. He is well known as a rock session musician, predominantly as a saxophonist. He also plays keyboards, flute, vibraphone, and guitar. He has been a session musician and appeared in the recording of the hit single “Get It On (Bang a Gong)” by T. Rex, and recordings by Linda Lewis, Christine Harwood amongst others.
Tim Finn 1952 – Singer/musician whose musical career includes forming 1970’s and 1980’s New Zealand rock group Split Enz (most notable for their 1980 single “I Got You”), a number of solo albums, temporary membership in his brother Neil’s band Crowded House and his joint efforts with Neil Finn as the Finn Brothers.
David Paich 1954 – Musician/singer/songwriter/producer who is best known for his work with rock/pop band Toto. With Toto, Paich has released 17 albums and sold over 30 million records. Additionally, Paich has contributed to a host of artists with his songwriting and arrangements including working with Boz Scaggs extensively in the 1970’s and Michael Jackson in the 1980’s. Paich wrote or co-wrote hits such as “Hold the Line”, “Lowdown”, “Lido Shuffle”, “Georgy Porgy”, “Rosanna”, “Got To Be Real”, and “Lady Love Me (One More Time)”. He also performed lead vocals on the Toto hits “Africa”, “Lovers in the Night”, and “Stranger in Town”. As a session musician Paich has played on numerous soundtracks and on albums by many artists, including Elkie Brooks’ album Rich Man’s Woman; Bryan Adams’ song “Please Forgive Me”; Michael Jackson songs “Earth Song”, “The Girl Is Mine”, “Heal the World”, “Stranger in Moscow”, and “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You”; and the USA for Africa song “We Are the World”, as well as work with Aretha Franklin, Boz Scaggs, Quincy Jones, Don Henley, Steely Dan, Elton John, Joe Cocker, and Pink.
George Michael 1963 – Singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and record producer. Michael rose to fame in the 1980’s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley. His first solo single, “Careless Whisper”, was released when he was still in the duo and sold about six million copies worldwide. The band’s first album Fantastic reached no. 1 in the UK in 1983 and produced a series of top 10 singles including “Young Guns (Go For It!)”, “Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)” and “Club Tropicana”. Their second album, Make It Big reached No. 1 on the charts in the US. Singles from that album included “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go”, “Freedom”, “Everything She Wants”, and “Careless Whisper”, the latter of which was Michael’s first solo effort as a single. Michael sang on the original Band Aid recording of “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” and donated the profits from “Last Christmas/Everything She Wants” to charity. In addition, he contributed background vocals to David Cassidy’s 1985 hit “The Last Kiss”, as well as Elton John’s 1985 successes “Nikita” and “Wrap Her Up”.
Boudleaux Bryant 1987 (b.1920) – Country music and pop songwriting team along with his wife Felice and they were best known for songs such as “Rocky Top,” “Love Hurts”, and numerous Everly Brothers hits including “All I Have to Do Is Dream” and “Bye Bye Love”. Their compositions were recorded by many artists from a variety of musical genres, including Tony Bennett, Sonny James, Eddy Arnold, Bob Moore, Charley Pride, Nazareth, Jim Reeves, Leo Sayer, Jerry Lee Lewis, Simon & Garfunkel, Sarah Vaughan, The Grateful Dead, Elvis Costello, Count Basie, Dean Martin, Ray Charles, Gram Parsons, Bob Dylan (Dylan’s Self Portrait album has one of Felice’s tracks and one co-written with her husband), and others.
Hillel Slovak 1988 (b.1962) – Musician best known as the original guitarist and founding member of the Los Angeles rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers. Prior to his death of a heroin overdose in 1988, Slovak recorded two albums with the band, Freaky Styley (1985) and The Uplift Mofo Party Plan (1987). His guitar work was primarily rooted in funk and hard rock, although he often experimented with other genres including reggae and speed metal. He is considered to have been a major influence on the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ early sound. Several Red Hot Chili Peppers songs have been written as tributes to Slovak, including “Knock Me Down” and “My Lovely Man”.
Michael Jackson 2009 (b.1958) – Singer/songwriter/dancer and philanthropist. Often referred to as the “King of Pop”. Jackson is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by Guinness World Records. He debuted on the professional music scene along with his brothers as a member of The Jackson 5 (The group set a chart record when its first four singles (“I Want You Back”, “ABC”, “The Love You Save”, and “I’ll Be There”) peaked at number one) in 1964, and began his solo career in 1971. In the early 1980s, Jackson became the dominant figure in popular music. The music videos for his songs, including those of “Beat It,” “Billie Jean,” and “Thriller,” were credited with breaking down racial barriers and transforming the medium into an art form and promotional tool. His 1982 album Thriller is the best-selling album of all time (sad but true). His other records, including Off the Wall (1979), Bad (1987), Dangerous (1991), and HIStory (1995), also rank among the world’s best-selling. Jackson is one of the few artists to have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice.
Big Bill Broonzy 1893 (d.1958) – was a prolific American blues singer, songwriter and guitarist. His career began in the 1920s when he played country blues to mostly African-American audiences. His first record, “Big Bill’s Blues” backed with “House Rent Stomp”, credited to “Big Bill and Thomps” (Paramount 12656), was released in 1927. Eric Clapton has cited Bill Broonzy as a major inspiration: Broonzy “became like a role model for me, in terms of how to play the acoustic guitar.” Ronnie Wood of The Rolling Stones claims that Bill Broonzy’s track, “Guitar Shuffle”, is his favorite guitar music. Wood said, “It was one of the first tracks I learnt to play, but even to this day I can’t play it exactly right.” Between 1927 and 1942, Broonzy recorded 224 songs, making him the second most prolific blues recording artist during that period. Broonzy copyrighted more than 300 songs during his lifetime, including both adaptations of traditional folk songs and original blues songs. One of his best-known songs, “Key to the Highway”.
Colonel Tom Parker 1909 (d.1997) – was a Dutch-born entertainment impresario known best as the manager of Elvis Presley. Parker’s management of Presley defined the role of masterminding talent management, which involved every facet of his life and was seen as central to the astonishing success of Presley’s career. “The Colonel” displayed a ruthless devotion to his client’s interests and took more than the traditional 10 percent of his earnings (reaching up to 50 percent by the end of Presley’s life). Presley said of Parker: “I don’t think I’d have ever been very big if it wasn’t for him. He’s a very smart man.”
Billy Davis Jr. 1938 – Singer/musician best known as a member of The 5th Dimension. Along with his wife, Marilyn McCoo, he had hit records during 1976 and 1977 with “I Hope We Get to Love in Time”, “Your Love”, and “You Don’t Have to Be a Star (To Be in My Show)”.
Georgie Fame 1943 – Rhythm and blues and jazz singer, and keyboard player. The one-time rock and roll tour musician, who had a string of 1960’s hits including “Yeh Yeh” in 1964, “Getaway” in 1966 and “The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde” in 1967. he is still a popular performer, often working with contemporaries such as Van Morrison and Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings of who he was a founding member. Fame toured the UK playing beside Wilde, Joe Brown, Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran and others. Fame played piano for Billy Fury in his backing band, the Blue Flames. When the backing band got the sack at the end of 1961, the band were re-billed as “Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames” and went on to enjoy great success with a repertoire largely of rhythm and blues numbers. Fame continued playing into the 1970s, having a hit, “Rosetta”, with his close friend Alan Price, ex-keyboard player of The Animals, in 1971, and they worked together extensively for a time. In 1974, Fame reformed the Blue Flames and also began to sing with Europe’s finest orchestras and big bands, a musical tradition he still currently pursues.
Mick Jones 1955 – Guitarist, vocalist and songwriter best known for his works with The Clash until his dismissal in 1983, then Big Audio Dynamite with Don Letts before line-up changes led to the formation of Big Audio Dynamite II and finally Big Audio. Jones plays with Carbon/Silicon along with Tony James and recently toured the world as part of the Gorillaz live band (which includes former Clash member Paul Simonon).
Chris Isaak 1956 – Singer/songwriter/guitarist who is best known for his song “Wicked Game” which was released on the 1989 album Heart Shaped World, an instrumental version of the song was later featured in the 1990 David Lynch film Wild at Heart. In 1999, Isaak’s “Baby Did a Bad, Bad Thing” was featured in Stanley Kubrick’s final film, Eyes Wide Shut, starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman. The song is on his 1995 Forever Blue album. The music video for the song is directed by Herb Ritts, it was shot in color and featured Isaak and French supermodel Laetitia Casta in a motel room.
Colin Greenwood 1969 – musician, composer, and the bassist for the rock band Radiohead. Apart from bass, Colin plays keyboards and synthesizers and works on sampling on the electronic side of Radiohead. He is the older brother of fellow band member Jonny Greenwood. The band released their debut album, Pablo Honey, in February 1993. It stalled at number 22 in the UK charts, as “Creep” and its anthemic follow-up singles “Anyone Can Play Guitar” and “Stop Whispering” failed to become major hits. “Pop Is Dead”, a non-album single later disavowed by the band, sold equally poorly. They were finally successful in their home country with The Bends, as singles “Fake Plastic Trees”, “High and Dry”, “Just”, and “Street Spirit (Fade Out)” made their way to UK chart success; the latter song placed Radiohead in the top five for the first time.
Doc Pomus 1925 (d.1991) – was a blues singer and songwriter who was best known as the lyricist of many rock and roll hits. His first big songwriting break came when he chanced upon the Coasters‘ version of his “Young Blood” on a jukebox while on his honeymoon. Pomus had written the song, then given it to Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, who radically rewrote it. Still, Doc was given co-credit as an author, and he soon received a royalty check for $1500.00, which convinced him that songwriting was a career direction well worth pursuing. He collaborated with pianist Mort Shuman, and their songwriting efforts had Pomus write the lyrics and Shuman the melody, although quite often they worked on both. They wrote the hit songs: “A Teenager in Love”; “Save The Last Dance For Me”; “Hushabye”; “This Magic Moment”; “Turn Me Loose”; “Sweets For My Sweet” (a hit for the Drifters and then the Searchers); “Go Jimmy Go”, “Little Sister”; “Surrender”; “(Marie’s the Name) His Latest Flame”. During the late 1950s and early 1960s, Pomus also wrote several songs with Phil Spector: “Young Boy Blues”; “Ecstasy”; “Here Comes The Night”; “What Am I To Do?”; Mike Stoller and Jerry Leiber: “Young Blood” and “She’s Not You”, and other Brill Building-era writers. Pomus also wrote “Lonely Avenue”, which became a 1956 hit for Ray Charles.
Bruce Johnston 1942 – Singer/songwriter and record producer who is best known as a member of The Beach Boys; he joined the band in 1965, contributed to many of their subsequent albums, and composed the song, “I Write the Songs”. Johnston joined the Beach Boys, replacing Glen Campbell, who was playing bass on the road and singing Brian Wilson’s vocal parts. Johnston did not start playing bass until his first tenure with the Beach Boys, and the very first vocal recording Johnston made as one of the Beach Boys was “California Girls”. He wrote several Beach Boys songs, notably 1971’s “Disney Girls (1957),” which was covered by Cass Elliot, Captain & Tennille, Art Garfunkel, Jack Jones, and Doris Day. Johnston also sang lead on two songs from the 1970 Beach Boys album Sunflower: “Tears In The Morning” and “Deirdre”. During live concerts Johnston currently sings lead vocals on “God Only Knows”, “Please Let Me Wonder”, “Wendy”, “Do You Wanna Dance”, and “Disney Girls”.
Joey Covington 1945 (d.2013) – Drummer who was best known for his involvements with Hot Tuna who he was a co-founder of in 1969, and also played with Jefferson Airplane.
Gilson Lavis 1951 – was the drummer for Squeeze from 1976 until 1992. More recently, he has been drumming for Jools Holland’s Rhythm & Blues Orchestra. Before joining Squeeze, he had already built up an amount of experience, having toured with Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis and Dolly Parton. He was working in a brickyard when he noticed the advertisement in Melody Maker for Squeeze.Lavis now tours around the United Kingdom with his long term musical partner, Holland.
Margo Timmins 1961 – is the lead vocalist of the Canadian band Cowboy Junkies. She is the sister of Michael Timmins, the band’s lead guitarist and Peter Timmins, the band’s drummer. Margo’s ethereal vocals, paired with the band’s spare and quiet songs performed at a languid pace, giving the band its unique sound. The group’s fame spread with their second album, The Trinity Session, which was recorded live on a single Calrec stereo microphone at the Church of the Holy Trinity in downtown Toronto by producer Peter J. Moore. This album also included a cover of The Velvet Underground’s “Sweet Jane” based on the 1969 Live album version rather than the studio version from Loaded. The single featured in the films Natural Born Killers and The Good Girl.
John “The Ox” Entwistle 2002 (b.1944) – Musician, songwriter, singer, and film and record producer who was best known as the bass player for the rock band The Who. He was the only member of the band with formal musical training. His aggressive lead sound influenced many rock bass players. He contributed backing vocals and performed on the French horn (heard in “Pictures of Lily”), trumpet, bugle, and jaw harp, and on some occasions (generally at least once per album and concert), lead vocalist on his compositions, the only exceptions being the first verse of “Happy Jack” and Ivor’s part on “A Quick One, While He’s Away”. Examples are on Tommy, (“Cousin Kevin”, “Fiddle About”), on the live favourite “Heaven and Hell”, and on Who’s Next (“My Wife”). He layered several horns and performed all pieces to create the brass as heard on songs such as “5:15”, among others. John Entwistle died in hotel room 658 at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas on 27 June 2002 one day before the scheduled first show of The Who’s 2002 US tour. He had gone to bed that night with a stripper/groupie, Alycen Rowse, who woke at 10 am to find Entwistle cold and unresponsive. The Clark County medical examiner determined that death was due to a heart attack induced by cocaine.
Jackie Washington 2009 (b.1919) – was a Canadian blues musician and also became Canada’s first black disk jockey in 1948, at CHML in Hamilton. In the 1930’s, he was one of the Washington Brothers, who played clubs and nightspots until his brother’s tragic death by drowning.Washington played with saxophonist Freddie Purser for many years during the 1970’s and 1980’s at the Windsor and Royal taverns in Hamilton. In 1980 Washington played the part of the janitor in the film adaptation of the play: Hank Williams: The Show He Never Gave.He also appeared in the 2005 television documentary: I Want To Be Happy: The Jackie Washington Story. His first release as a solo blues artist was Blues and Sentimental in June 1976. In addition to his own albums, Washington appeared on recordings by Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, Joni Mitchell and Gordon Lightfoot. He had also been a regular performer at many Canadian folk and blues festivals, several of which have named awards in his honour. Washington was well known for having a repertoire of some 1300 blues, folk and jazz songs.
David Knights 1945 – was the original bass guitarist in Procol Harum. He played bass on the hit single “A Whiter Shade of Pale”. He was in the band long enough to play on their first three albums. He departed in 1969, to be replaced by Chris Copping. He has since formed the band named Ruby, that released one album before disbanding. He also produced a single for Mickey Jupp’s Legend group.
GG Allin 1993 (b.1956) – was an American punk rock singer-songwriter, who performed and recorded with many groups during his career. GG Allin is best remembered for his notorious live performances, which often featured transgressive acts, including coprophagia, self-mutilation, and attacking audience members. Allin fronted many acts during the early to mid-1980s. This includes albums from The Cedar Street Sluts, The Scumfucs in 1982 and The Texas Nazis in 1985. Allin remained in the underground hardcore scene yet was not part of the east coast hardcore scene. His performances in Manchester, New Hampshire with the Cedar Street Sluts earned him the nickname of “the madman of Manchester.” Allin idolized country music legend Hank Williams and saw himself as a kindred spirit. Both were relative loners and outsiders, both were habitual users of intoxicants, both lived with few, if any, possessions and both traveled the country relentlessly. Allin’s acoustic output, documented on the EP The Troubled Troubador, was heavily influenced by Williams. He recorded his own rewrites of Hank Williams, Jr.’s “Family Tradition” and David Allan Coe’s “Longhaired Redneck”, calling his own versions “Scumfuc Tradition” and “Outlaw Scumfuc” respectively. Later, Allin also released another country album Carnival of Excess, his most refined record. Though Allin promised for several years before his death that he would commit suicide onstage during one of his concerts, he died June 28, 1993 of an accidental heroin overdose.
Bill Aucoin 2010 (b.1943) – was an American band manager, well known for his work with the rock band Kiss. Credited with discovering KISS, Aucoin managed the group for nearly a decade. He quit in 1982 citing creative and directional differences, but later worked with the band on various DVD projects.
Little Eva (Boyd) 1943 (d.2003) – known by the stage name of Little Eva (after a character from Uncle Tom’s Cabin), was an American pop singer. As a teenager, she worked as a maid and earned extra money as a babysitter for songwriters Carole King and Gerry Goffin. It is often claimed that Goffin and King were amused by Boyd’s individual dancing style, so they wrote “The Loco-Motion” for her and had her record it as a demo (the record was intended for Dee Dee Sharp). The song reached #1 in the United States in 1962. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. Boyd’s other single recordings were “Keep Your Hands Off My Baby”, “Some Kinda Wonderful”, “Let’s Turkey Trot” and a remake of the Bing Crosby standard “Swinging on a Star,” recorded with Big Dee Irwin (though Boyd was not credited on the label).Boyd also recorded the song “Makin’ With the Magilla” for an episode of the 1964 Hanna-Barbera cartoon series The Magilla Gorilla Show.
Bob Brunning 1943 (d.2011) – was a British musician who was, as a small part of a long musical career, the original bass guitar player with the blues rock band Fleetwood Mac. When Peter Green left the Bluesbreakers in 1967, he decided to form his own group, naming it Fleetwood Mac after the rhythm section he wanted for the band – Mick Fleetwood and John McVie. Fleetwood joined up straight away, but McVie preferred to stay with the Bluesbreakers. In the meantime, Green hired Brunning on a temporary basis, hoping that McVie would change his mind. After a few weeks McVie did change his mind, claiming that Bluesbreakers leader John Mayall was turning too far in the direction of jazz for his liking. So McVie joined, and Brunning stood down. Brunning did contribute bass guitar to one track on Fleetwood Mac’s debut album Fleetwood Mac, that song being “Long Grey Mare”. After his stint in Fleetwood Mac, he joined Savoy Brown before embarking on a career in teaching
Ian Paice 1948 – best known as the drummer of the English rock band Deep Purple. As of Jon Lord’s departure in 2002, he is the only continuous member of the band, and as such is the only member to appear on every album the band has released. After Deep Purple split, Ian Paice went on to form a new supergroup, Paice Ashton Lord in 1976. The band, comprising also singer/pianist Tony Ashton, organist Jon Lord, guitarist/vocalist Bernie Marsden and bassist Paul Martinez recorded one album, Malice in Wonderland and they played only five live shows. In August 1979, Ian Paice was asked by David Coverdale to join Whitesnake on the Japanese Tour for the Lovehunter album. He stayed with the band for almost three years. He appeared on the Whitesnake albums Ready an’ Willing (1980), Live…in the Heart of the City (1980), Come an’ Get It (1981) and Saints & Sinners (1982). He has also performed with likes of Robert Plant, Brian May, John Paul Jones, Gary Moore and Bruce Dickinson.
Derv Gordon 1948 – best known as the lead singer for the 1960’s band The Equals who are mainly remembered for its million-selling chart-topper, “Baby, Come Back”. Eddy Grant, then sporting dyed blonde hair, founded the group. Completing the original line-up were John Hall, Pat Lloyd, and twin brothers Derv and Lincoln Gordon. At the beginning of 1971, Grant left The Equals to pursue his solo career. In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s Grant released several Top 40 singles, including “Living On The Front Line”, “Electric Avenue” and “Romancing the Stone”. The song “Baby, Come Back” refused to go away. It returned in 1994, when Pato Banton scored a UK number one with his cover.
Lincoln Gordon 1948 – best known as the bassist for the 1960’s band The Equals who are mainly remembered for its million-selling chart-topper, “Baby, Come Back”. Eddy Grant, then sporting dyed blonde hair, founded the group. Completing the original line-up were John Hall, Pat Lloyd, and twin brothers Derv and Lincoln Gordon. At the beginning of 1971, Grant left The Equals to pursue his solo career. In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s Grant released several Top 40 singles, including “Living On The Front Line”, “Electric Avenue” and “Romancing the Stone”. The song “Baby, Come Back” refused to go away. It returned in 1994, when Pato Banton scored a UK number one with his cover.
Don Dokken 1953 – heavy metal vocalist, best known for being the lead singer and founder of the band Dokken. He is known for his vibrato-laden, melodic vocal style which has made him an influential figure in American hard rock and heavy metal. After enjoying mainstream success with Dokken, he parted ways with the band in 1988 and pursued a solo career. His 1990 solo album, Up from the Ashes,was a supergroup of sorts, made up of guitarists John Norum (of Europe fame) and Billy White ( of Watchtower fame), bassist Peter Baltes (of Accept fame), guitaris and drummer Mikkey Dee (of King Diamond fame and then Motörhead) and spawned two singles.
Colin Hay 1953 – musician and actor who made his mark during the 1980’s as lead vocalist of the Australian band Men at Work, and later as a solo artist. Men at Work are the only Australian artist to have a simultaneous No. 1 album and No. 1 single in the United States (Business as Usual and “Down Under” respectively). The band’s second single, “Who Can It Be Now?”, was released in June 1981 and reached No. 1 on the Australian singles chart in August that year. Hay has as a solo artist released 11 albums as of 2011.
Tim Buckley 1975 (b.1947) – was an American singer and musician. His music and style changed considerably through the years; his first album (1966) was mostly folk oriented, but over time his music incorporated jazz, psychedelia, funk, soul, avant-garde and an evolving “voice as instrument,” sound. His song “Once I Was” (from the album, The Best Of Tim Buckley) played at the end of the Academy Award winning film “Coming Home” (Jon Voight, Jane Fonda, Bruce Dern) the album was used as a soundtrack to Hall Bartlett’s 1969 movie Changes and Micky Dolenz landed Tim a spot to perform “Song to the Siren” on the final episode of The Monkees TV show.
Lowell George 1979 (b.1945) – Singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer, who was the main guitarist and songwriter for the rock band Little Feat. In November 1968, George joined Zappa’s Mothers of Invention as rhythm guitarist and nominal lead vocalist; he can be heard on both Weasels Ripped My Flesh and the first disc of You Can’t Do That on Stage Anymore, Vol. 5. After leaving the Mothers of Invention, George invited fellow musicians to form a new band, which they named Little Feat. George usually (but not always) played lead guitar and focused on slide guitar. Ry Cooder played the slide on the debut Little Feat album after George badly injured his hand while working on a powered model airplane, although George re-recorded some of his material. In the 1970’s, Little Feat released a series of studio albums: Little Feat, Sailin’ Shoes, Dixie Chicken, Feats Don’t Fail Me Now, The Last Record Album, and Time Loves A Hero. The group’s 1978 live album Waiting for Columbus became their best-selling album. Outside of his band, George played guitar on John Cale’s 1973 album Paris 1919, Harry Nilsson’s Son of Schmilsson album (Take 54) and (uncredited but verified by Leo Nocentelli) The Meters’ Just Kissed My Baby in 1974. Also with The Meters, Lowell George’s slide work features prominently on Robert Palmer’s first solo studio album Sneakin’ Sally Through the Alley recorded in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1974.
Rosemary Clooney 2002 (b.1928) – Singer/actress who came to prominence in the early 1950’s with the novelty hit “Come On-a My House” written by William Saroyan and his cousin Ross Bagdasarian (better known as David Seville, the father figure of Alvin and the Chipmunks), which was followed by other pop numbers such as “Botch-a-Me” (a cover version of the Italian song Ba-Ba-Baciami Piccina by Alberto Rabagliati), “Mambo Italiano”, “Tenderly”, “Half as Much”, “Hey There” and “This Ole House”, although she had success as a jazz vocalist.
George McCorkle 2007 (b.1947) – was a founding member and guitarist for the Marshall Tucker Band. He wrote “Fire on the Mountain”, the band’s first top 40 hit, though had hoped that Charlie Daniels would record the song. He left the band in 1984 and later worked as a songwriter.He released a solo album, American Street, in 1999.
Florence Ballard 1943 (d.1976) – Singer who was best known as one of the founding members of the popular Motown vocal group The Supremes. As a member, Ballard sang on sixteen top forty singles with the group, including ten number-one hits. In August 1960, the group recorded the ballad, “After All”, which included all four members singing a lead part. Later in 1960, they recorded the songs “You Can Depend on Me”, “I Want a Guy” and “Buttered Popcorn”, the latter song featuring Ballard in her first song as lead vocalist. In 1964, the group scored their first number-one single, “Where Did Our Love Go” and eventually scored a total of three number-one singles in 1964 alone including “Baby Love” and “Come See About Me”. Ballard was given a lead vocal on the song, “People”, which became her trademark lead onstage for a number of years.
Glenn Shorrock 1944 – Singer/songwriter who was a founding member of pop groups The Twilights, Axiom and Little River Band as well as being a solo performer. he Twilights had eight consecutive national hit singles including “Needle in a Haystack” and “What’s Wrong with the Way I Live”. Axiom’s top 10 hits were “Arkansas Grass”, “Little Ray of Sunshine” and “My Baby’s Gone”. Little River Band had national and international chart success, including the Shorrock-penned “Emma”, “Help Is on Its Way” and “Cool Change”.
Andy Scott 1949 – is best known for being the lead guitarist and a vocalist in the band Sweet. The band achieved notable success in the UK charts, with thirteen Top 20 hits during the 1970s alone, with “Block Buster!” (1973) topping the chart, followed by three consecutive number two hits in “Hell Raiser” (1973), “The Ballroom Blitz” (1973) and “Teenage Rampage” (1974). Their first self-written and produced single “Fox on the Run” (1975) also reached number two on the UK charts. The Sweet had their last Top 10 hit in 1978 with “Love Is Like Oxygen”.
Stanley Clarke 1951 – Jazz musician and composer known for his innovative and influential work on double bass and electric bass as well as for his numerous film and television scores. He is best known for his work with the fusion band Return to Forever, and his role as a bandleader in several trios and ensembles. His well-known solo album is School Days (1976), which, along with Jaco Pastorius’s self-titled debut, is one of the most influential solo bass recordings in fusion history. His albums Stanley Clarke (1974) and Journey to Love (1975) are also notable. Clarke formed Animal Logic with rock drummer Stewart Copeland, after the break-up of The Police, and singer-songwriter Deborah Holland. Other notable (recording/touring) project involvements are: (1979) Jeff Beck, (1979) Ron Wood’s New Barbarians, (1981, 1983, 1990) Clarke/Duke Project with George Duke, (1984) with Miroslav Vitouš, (1989) Animal Logic with Stewart Copeland, (1993–94), A group with Larry Carlton, Billy Cobham, Najee & Deron Johnson, (1995) The Rite of Strings with Jean-Luc Ponty and Al Di Meola and (1999) Vertu’ with Lenny White and Richie Kotzen.
Hal Lindes 1953 – Guitarist/film score composer who in 1980 began recording a solo album with producer Al Kooper, along with Herbie Flowers on bass and John Bradbury (of The Specials) on drums. The project was halted mid-stream when Lindes received an invitation by Mark Knopfler to join the British rock band Dire Straits. Lindes became a full-time member of Dire Straits at the end of 1980 while the band were promoting their third album, Making Movies. During his five-year tenure with the group, Dire Straits grew from playing small clubs to performing in sold out stadiums. He featured in the their next album, 1982’s Love Over Gold as well as the 1983 EP, titled ExtendedancEPlay. He toured with Dire Straits for their 1983 world tour and was present on the live album Alchemy Live, double album of excerpts from concerts at the Hammersmith Odeon in July 1983 which was released in early 1984. In early 1985, while Dire Straits were recording tracks for their Brothers In Arms album, Lindes left Dire Straits to compose film soundtracks full-time.
Doug Sampson 1957 – is a British former musician, best known as the drummer for Iron Maiden from 1977 to 1979. He participated in the recording of Iron Maiden’s demo, later released as The Soundhouse Tapes, on 31 December 1978, some tracks from which appeared in the charts of Neal Kay’s Heavy Metal Soundhouse club, published weekly in Sounds. Iron Maiden eventually signed to EMI in 1979, following which they undertook two failed attempts at recording their debut album, although one song from these sessions (“Burning Ambition”) was included on the B-Side of “Running Free”.
Yngwie Malmsteen 1963 – is a Swedish guitarist, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and bandleader. Malmsteen became known for his neo-classical playing style in heavy metal. Malmsteen released his first solo album Rising Force in 1984, which featured Barrie Barlow of Jethro Tull on drums and keyboard player Jens Johansson. Rising Force won the Guitar Player Magazine’s award for Best Rock Album and was nominated for a Grammy for ‘Best Rock Instrumental’, achieving #60 on the Billboard album chart. He has since released 20+ other albums.
Chet Atkins 2001 (b.1924) – Guitarist/record producer who, along with Owen Bradley, created the smoother country music style known as the Nashville sound, which expanded country’s appeal to adult pop music fans as well. Atkins’s picking style, inspired by Merle Travis, Django Reinhardt, George Barnes, Les Paul, and (Mother) Maybelle Carter brought him admirers within and outside the country scene, both in the United States and internationally. Atkins produced records for The Browns, Porter Wagoner, Norma Jean, Dolly Parton, Dottie West, Perry Como, Elvis Presley, the Everly Brothers, Eddy Arnold, Don Gibson, Jim Reeves, Jerry Reed, Skeeter Davis, Waylon Jennings and many others. Among many honors, Atkins received 14 Grammy Awards as well as the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, nine Country Music Association Instrumentalist of the Year awards, was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum.