Musical Birthdays & Deaths by Month
Sgt. Barry Sadler 1940 (d.1989) – was an American military veteran, singer/songwriter and author. Sadler served as a Green Beret medic, achieving the rank of Staff Sergeant. He served in the Vietnam War from late December 1964 to late May 1965. Most of his work has a military theme, and he is best known for his “Ballad of the Green Berets,” the No. 1 pop song of 1966.
Ric Grech 1946 (d.1990) – was a British rock musician and multi-instrumentalist. Grech originally gained notice in the United Kingdom as the bass guitar player for the progressive rock group Family in 1965. In the spring of 1969, former Cream guitarist Eric Clapton and former Traffic frontman Steve Winwood formed the supergroup Blind Faith; in need of a bassist, they immediately recruited Grech. He recorded with the group the self-titled album, Blind Faith, with Clapton, Winwood, and drummer Ginger Baker, a former bandmate of Clapton’s in Cream. The quartet toured the U.S. to support it. Clapton was disappointed with the quality of the music and the performances, and Blind Faith called it quits. Grech and Winwood stayed with Baker to form Ginger Baker’s Air Force, a “supergroup” which also included Denny Laine (ex-Moody Blues) on guitar, Chris Wood (ex-Traffic) on sax and flute, and several other musicians; when that group ended, Winwood reformed Traffic with original members Wood and Jim Capaldi, and Grech joined as their bassist. After that Grech remained active in session work, playing with Rod Stewart, Ronnie Lane, Vivian Stanshall and Muddy Waters. He also worked with Rosetta Hightower, the Crickets, Bee Gees and Gram Parsons. Grech retired from music in 1977 and moved back to Leicester. In 1990 he died of renal failure at the age of 43, as a result of alcoholism.
David Foster 1949 – is a Canadian musician, record producer, composer, songwriter, and arranger. He has been a producer for musicians including Chaka Khan, Alice Cooper, Chicago, Natalie Cole, Celine Dion, Rod Stewart, Michael Jackson, Barbra Streisand and many others. Foster has won 16 Grammy Awards from 47 nominations. He was the chairman of Verve Records from 2012 to 2016. Foster also composed “Winter Games”, the theme song for 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta. “Winter Games” is also the soundtrack for fountain shows at the Bellagio resort in Las Vegas.
Lyle Lovett 1957 – is an American country singer-songwriter and actor. Active since 1980, he has recorded thirteen albums and released 25 singles to date, including his highest entry, the number 10 chart hit on the U.S. BillboardHot Country Songs chart, “Cowboy Man”. Lovett has won four Grammy Awards, including Best Country Album (1996 for The Road to Ensenada), Best Country Duo/Group with Vocal (1994 for “Blues For Dixie” with the Texas swing group Asleep at the Wheel), Best Pop Vocal Collaboration (1994 for “Funny How Time Slips Away” with Al Green) and Best Country Male Vocal (1989 for Lyle Lovett and His Large Band).
Anthony Kiedis 1962 – is an American musician who is the lead singer and songwriter of the band Red Hot Chili Peppers, which he has fronted since its inception in 1983. Kiedis and his fellow band members were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012.
Rick Allen 1963 – is an English drummer who has played for the hard rock band Def Leppard since 1978. He overcame the amputation of his left arm in 1985 and continued to play with the band, which subsequently went on to its most commercially successful phase. He is known as “The Thunder God” by fans.
Jimmy Carl Black 2008 (b.1938) – was a drummer and vocalist for The Mothers of Invention. His trademark line was “Hi Boys and Girls, I’m Jimmy Carl Black, and I’m the Indian of the group.” The line can be heard several times on The Mothers of Invention’s album We’re Only in It for the Money (for example, on the tracks “Are You Hung Up?” and “Concentration Moon”). He has been credited on some Mothers albums as playing “drums, vocals, and poverty”.
Jay Black 1938 – is an American singer, also known as “The Voice,” whose height of fame came in the 1960’s when he was the lead singer of the band Jay and the Americans. The band had numerous hits including “Cara Mia”, “Come a Little Bit Closer”, and “This Magic Moment”. Jay Black was the second, and more widely known Jay to lead the band Jay and the Americans, the first being Jay Traynor. He had previously come from the doo-wop group The Empires, where he had sung lead on their 1962 lone Epic Records single “Time and a Place” b/w “Punch Your Nose” (Epic 5-9527).
Bruce Welch 1941 – is an English guitarist, songwriter, producer and singer, best known as a member of The Shadows (Cliff Richard’s backing band). Welch also acted as producer for (among others) Cliff Richard and songwriter for his ex-fiancée, Olivia Newton-John. He also released a solo single “Please Mr. Please”, which of course was a bigger hit for his ex. Among tunes/songs written or co-written by Welch are the Shadows’ hits “Foot Tapper” and “The Rise and Fall of Flingel Bunt”, Marvin Welch & Farrar’s “Faithful” and “My Home Town”, and Cliff Richard hits “Please Don’t Tease”, “In the Country”, “Summer Holiday”, “I Love You” and “I Could Easily Fall (In Love With You)”.
Keith Emerson 1944 (d.2016) – was an English musician and composer who played keyboards in a number of bands before finding his first commercial success with the Nice in the late 1960’s. After leaving the Nice in 1970, he was a founding member of Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP), one of the early progressive rock supergroups. Emerson, Lake & Palmer were commercially successful through much of the 1970’s, becoming one of the best-known progressive rock groups of the era. Following ELP’s break-up at the end of the 1970’s, Emerson pursued a solo career, composed several film soundtracks, and formed the bands Emerson, Lake & Powell and 3 to carry on in the style of ELP. In the early 1990’s, Emerson rejoined ELP, which reunited for two more albums and several tours before breaking up again in the late 1990’s. Emerson also reunited the Nice in 2002 for a tour. Emerson is widely regarded as one of the top keyboard players of the progressive rock era. AllMusic describes Emerson as “perhaps the greatest, most technically accomplished keyboardist in rock history”.
J.D. Souther 1945 – is an American singer and songwriter. He has written and co-written songs recorded by Linda Ronstadt and the Eagles. After moving to Los Angeles, California, in the late 1960’s, he met musician and songwriter, Glenn Frey and the two became roommates and musical collaborators. Souther and Frey formed a folk duo called Longbranch Pennywhistle. Their lone album was released in 1970 on Jimmy Bowen’s Amos Records. After recording an eponymous solo album in 1972 Souther teamed up with Chris Hillman and Richie Furay to form the Souther Hillman Furay Band. The group released two albums, but creative tensions and lack of record sales led to the band’s demise. He co-wrote some of the biggest hits for the Eagles, including “Best of My Love”, “Victim of Love”, “Heartache Tonight”, and “New Kid in Town”.
Souther briefly dated Linda Ronstadt, co-produced her Don’t Cry Now album, and wrote songs for several of her multi-platinum albums, including “Faithless Love” from Heart Like a Wheel and “White Rhythm and Blues” on Living in the USA. Souther also recorded several duets with Ronstadt, including “Hasten Down the Wind,” “Prisoner in Disguise,” “Sometimes You Can’t Win”, and “Hearts Against the Wind” which was featured in the 1980 film Urban Cowboy.
Dave Pegg 1947 – is an English multi-instrumentalist and record producer, arguably most visible as a bass guitarist. He is the longest-serving member of the pre-eminent British folk rock band Fairport Convention and has been bassist with a number of important folk and rock groups including The Ian Campbell Folk Group and Jethro Tull. He has appeared on some of the most significant albums of his era, as well as undertaking solo projects. His style of playing bass has been particularly influential in folk rock music. In 1966 he auditioned for The Ugly’s, featuring Steve Gibbons and was beaten to the position by friend and guitarist Roger Hill, but was offered the job of bass guitarist and switched instruments. The Ugly’s cut one single before Pegg and Hill left to form a blues trio, The Exception, with singer Alan Eastwood. At this period he played with Robert Plant and in his next band, The Way of Life, the drummer was John Bonham, later both went to form Led Zeppelin.
Maxine Nightingale 1952 – is a British R&B and soul music singer. She is best known for her hits in the 1970s, with the million seller “Right Back Where We Started From” (1975, U.K. & 1976, U.S.), “Love Hit Me” (1977), and “Lead Me On” (1979). In 1969 Nightingale began a tenure of roughly 18 months in the West End production of Hair, playing a supporting role and understudying the female lead role of Sheila; she then relocated to Germany, having formed a relationship with an actor from the German production of Hair whom she had met when he visited the West End production. In Germany, Nightingale continued her stage musical career in Hair (as Sheila), Jesus Christ Superstar, and Godspell.
k.d. Lang 1961 – is a Canadian pop and country singer-songwriter and occasional actress. Lang has won both Juno Awards and Grammy Awards for her musical performances; hits include “Constant Craving” and “Miss Chatelaine”. She has contributed songs to movie soundtracks and has collaborated with musicians such as Roy Orbison, Tony Bennett, Elton John, Anne Murray, Ann Wilson, and Jane Siberry. She performed Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” live at the opening ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Previously, she had performed at the closing ceremony of the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. Lang possesses the vocal range of a mezzo-soprano.
Ron McGovney 1962 – is a semi-retired American musician, best known as the original bass guitarist in the heavy metal band Metallica from October 1981 to December 1982. Having previously played with guitarist James Hetfield in the garage band Leather Charm, McGovney was a member of Metallica during its first year of gigging and appeared on their early demos before departing late in 1982. After a period of intense activity, he later played in the thrash metal band Phantasm.
John Barry 1933 (d.2011) – was an English composer and conductor of film music. He composed the scores for 11 of the James Bond films between 1963 and 1987, and also arranged and performed the “James Bond Theme” to the first film in the series, 1962’s Dr. No. He wrote the Grammy- and Academy Award-winning scores to the films Dances with Wolves and Out of Africa, as well as the theme for the British television cult series The Persuaders!, in a career spanning over 50 years. In 1999, he was appointed OBE at Buckingham Palace for services to music.
Bert Jansch 1943 (d.2011) – was a Scottish folk musician and founding member of the band Pentangle. He was born in Glasgow and came to prominence in London in the 1960s, as an acoustic guitarist, as well as a singer-songwriter. He recorded at least 25 albums and toured extensively from the 1960’s to the 21st century. Jansch’s work influenced such artists as Al Stewart, Paul Simon, Johnny Marr, Elton John, Ian Anderson, Bernie Taupin, Bernard Butler, Jimmy Page, Nick Drake, Graham Coxon, Donovan, Neil Young, Fleet Foxes, Devendra Banhart, Neil Halstead, and Roy Harper. Jansch received two Lifetime Achievement Awards at the BBC Folk Awards: one, in 2001, for his solo achievements and the other, in 2007, as a member of Pentangle.
Nick Simper 1945 – is an English bass guitarist, who was a co-founding member of Deep Purple and Warhorse. In the 1960s, he began his professional career in bands such as Johnny Kidd & the Pirates, The Flower Pot Men (alongside Jon Lord), and Lord Sutch’s Savages. Simper played bass on three Deep Purple albums from 1968 to 1969. He was fired from Deep Purple in mid-1969 together with original singer Rod Evans. Ritchie Blackmore had also stated in interviews that he felt Simper’s bass playing was too old fashioned and more suited to old style rock ‘n roll than the hard rock direction he wanted to take the band in.
Marie Lawrie 1948 – better known by her stage name Lulu, is a Scottish singer-songwriter, actress, television personality and businesswoman who has been in the entertainment business since the 1960’s and is known for her powerful singing voice. She is internationally known, especially by North American audiences, for the song “To Sir With Love” from the film of the same name and with the title song to the James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun. In European countries, she is also widely known for her Eurovision Song Contest winning entry “Boom Bang-a-Bang”, and in the UK for her 1964 hit “Shout”, which was performed at the closing ceremony of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
Lonnie Donegan 2002 (b.1931) – was a skiffle singer, songwriter and musician, referred to as the “King of Skiffle”, who influenced 1960’s British pop musicians. The British Hit Singles & Albums lists him as “Britain’s most successful and influential recording artist before the Beatles”. He had 31 UK Top 30 single hits, 24 being successive and three at number one. He was the first British male singer with two US Top 10 hits. Donegan received an Ivor Novello lifetime achievement award in 1997 and in 2000 he was made an MBE. He recorded his debut album, Lonnie Donegan Showcase, in summer 1956, with songs by Lead Belly and Leroy Carr, plus “I’m a Ramblin’ Man” and “Wabash Cannonball”. The LP sold hundreds of thousands. The skiffle style encouraged amateurs and one of many groups that followed was the Quarrymen, formed in March 1957 by John Lennon. Donegan’s “Gamblin’ Man”/”Puttin’ On the Style” single was number one in the UK in July 1957, when Lennon first met Paul McCartney.
Jim Clench 2010 (b.1949) – was a Canadian bassist and vocalist best known for his roles in the Canadian rock bands April Wine and Bachman–Turner Overdrive. Clench was asked to join April Wine after their original bassist Jim Henman decided to leave the band in October 1971. Although Myles Goodwyn was April Wine’s primary lead singer, Clench was lead vocalist on songs such as the hit singles “Oowatanite” (which he also wrote) and “Weeping Widow”. In 1975, after recording three studio albums and one live, Clench decided to leave April Wine and was replaced by former Mashmakhan bassist Steve Lang. Early April Wine albums recorded with Clench include; On Record (1972), Electric Jewels (1973), Live! (1974), and Stand Back (1975), which was released just before he left the band. In 1978, Clench was asked to join Bachman–Turner Overdrive to replace Randy Bachman, who decided to start a solo career. Clench was with BTO until its demise in 1979, appearing on the albums Street Action (1978) and Rock n’ Roll Nights (1979).
Kay Starr 2016 (b.1922) – was an American pop and jazz singer who enjoyed considerable success in the 1940s and 1950’s. She is best remembered for introducing two songs that became #1 hits in the 1950’s, “Wheel of Fortune” and “The Rock And Roll Waltz”. Starr was successful in every field of music she tried: jazz, pop and country. But her roots were in jazz. Billie Holiday, considered by many the greatest jazz singer of all time, called Starr “the only white woman who could sing the blues.”
Delbert McClinton 1940 – is an American blues rock and electric blues singer-songwriter, guitarist, harmonica player, and pianist. Active as a sideman since 1962 and as a band leader since 1972, he has recorded albums for several major record labels and singles that have reached the Billboard Hot 100, Mainstream Rock Tracks, and Hot Country Songs charts. His highest-charting single was “Tell Me About It”, a 1992 duet with Tanya Tucker, which reached number 4 on the Country chart. Four of his albums have been number 1 on the U.S. Blues chart, and another reached number 2.
Chris Difford 1954 – is an English singer, musician, songwriter, and record producer. He was a founding member and songwriter of the British group Squeeze. Some of their best-known songs are “Tempted”, “Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)”, “Black Coffee in Bed”, “Cool for Cats”, “Up the Junction” and “Annie Get Your Gun”. After the break-up of Squeeze in 1983 Difford continued writing songs with Glenn Tilbrook for artists such as Jools Holland, Helen Shapiro, Billy Bremner and Elvis Costello. He has also written lyrics for music by Jools Holland, Elton John, Wet Wet Wet, Marti Pellow and others.
James Honeyman-Scott 1956 (d.1982) – was an English rock guitarist, songwriter and founding member of the band The Pretenders. In addition to his role as lead guitarist, Honeyman-Scott co-wrote a number of songs for the band, sang back-up vocals, and played keyboards on a few tracks. The song “2000 Miles” was written for him by Chrissie Hynde and released the year after his death. Honeyman-Scott acknowledged a number of influences on his guitar-playing (Guitar Player, 1981). Early musical influences included Cream and the Allman Brothers Band. Later, he was influenced by the lead lines and finger vibrato used by Mick Ralphs of Mott the Hoople. He also credited Nick Lowe and Elvis Costello with their “big jangly” Rickenbacker-influenced guitar sound (Guitar Player, 1981). During his tenure with the Pretenders, Dave Edmunds and Billy Bremner from Rockpile were influential, as well as Nils Lofgren and Chris Spedding.
Fred “Sonic” Smith 1994 (b.1948) – was an American guitarist, best known as a member of the influential and political, Detroit rock band, the MC5. At age 31, he married and raised a family with poet and fellow rock musician, Patti Smith. The couple collaborated musically, and raised two children together. He was the inspiration for her song “Frederick”, a single from her 1979 album Wave. The band Sonic Youth took its name from Smith’s nickname.
Eddie Harsch 2016 (b.1957) – was a Canadian keyboardist and member of Detroit-based jam band Bulldog. Previous to that he was The Black Crowes’ keyboardist from 1991 to 2006. Harsch first joined Bulldog during The Black Crowes’ hiatus, which lasted from early 2002 to early 2005. During that time he also played bass in the Detroit Cobras. In the 1980’s, Harsch was a member of James Cotton’s band.
Ike Turner 1931 (d.2007) – was an American musician, bandleader, songwriter, arranger, talent scout, and record producer. An early pioneer of fifties rock and roll, he is most popularly known for his work in the 1960’s and 1970’s with his then-wife Tina Turner in the Ike & Tina Turner Revue. Turner began playing piano and guitar when he was eight, forming his group, the Kings of Rhythm, as a teenager. He employed the group as his backing band for the rest of his life. His first recording, “Rocket 88”, credited to “Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats”, in 1951 is considered a contender for “first rock and roll song”. Relocating to St. Louis, Missouri, in 1954, he built the Kings into one of the most renowned acts on the local club circuit. There he met singer Anna Mae Bullock, whom he renamed Tina Turner, forming the Ike & Tina Turner Revue, which over the course of the sixties became a soul/rock crossover success. In July 1960, “A Fool in Love” was released under the billing ‘Ike & Tina Turner’ and later became a national hit, selling a million copies and making the duo national stars. Turner added a backing girl group he renamed the Ikettes, and this also led to the first name change of the Kings of Rhythm as they began performing as the Ike & Tina Turner Revue. The duo produced five more substantial hit singles, including “Poor Fool”, “I Idolize You” and a cover of the Joe Seneca track “It’s Gonna Work Out Fine”, which gave them their second million-seller and their first Grammy nomination. Other notable records the duo released were covers of Sly & the Family Stone’s “I Want To Take You Higher” and Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Proud Mary”, and the Tina Turner-penned “Nutbush City Limits”.
Art Garfunkel 1941 – is an American singer, poet, teacher and actor. He is best known for his partnership in his earlier years with Paul Simon in the folk rock duo Simon & Garfunkel. Highlights of his solo music career include a top 10 hit, three top 20 hits, six top 40 hits, 14 Adult Contemporary top 30 singles, five Adult Contemporary number ones, two UK number ones and a People’s Choice Award. Through his solo and collaborative work, Garfunkel has earned six Grammy’s, including the Lifetime Achievement Award. In 1990, he and Simon were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. They released their first album, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M. on Columbia Records in October 1964. It was not a critical or commercial success, and the duo split. The next year, producer Tom Wilson lifted the song “The Sound of Silence” from the record, dubbed an electric backing onto it, and released it as a single that went to number one on the Billboard pop charts. Simon had gone to England in 1965 after the initial failure of Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M., to pursue a solo career. He briefly teamed with songwriter Bruce Woodley of The Seekers. After “The Sound of Silence” had started to enjoy commercial success, he returned to the States to reunite with Garfunkel. The duo recorded four more influential albums: Sounds of Silence, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, Bookends, and the hugely successful Bridge over Troubled Water.
Gram Parsons 1946 (d.1973) – was an American singer, songwriter, guitarist, and pianist. Parsons is best known for his work within the country music genre; he also popularized what he called “Cosmic American Music”, a hybrid of country, rhythm and blues, soul, folk, and rock. Besides recording as a solo artist, he played with the International Submarine Band, The Byrds, and The Flying Burrito Brothers. His relatively short career is described by AllMusic as “enormously influential” for country and rock, “blending the two genres to the point that they became indistinguishable from each other.” His posthumous honors include the Americana Music Association “President’s Award” for 2003, and a ranking at No. 87 on Rolling Stone’s list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time.”
Peter Noone 1947 – is an English singer-songwriter, guitarist, pianist and actor, best known as Herman of the successful 1960s pop group Herman’s Hermits. At the age of 15, he became the lead singer, spokesman and front man of Herman’s Hermits and as “Herman”, the photogenic Noone appeared on the cover of many international publications, including Time Magazine’s cover collage showing new faces in popular music. His classic hits included: “I’m into Something Good”, “Mrs. Brown, You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter”, “I’m Henry the Eighth, I Am”, “Silhouettes”, “Can’t You Hear My Heartbeat”, “Just a Little Bit Better”, “Wonderful World”, “There’s a Kind of Hush”, “A Must to Avoid”, “Listen People”, “The End of the World” and “Dandy”. Herman’s Hermits sold more than 60 million recordings, with 14 gold singles and seven gold albums. The Hermits were twice named Cashbox’s “Entertainer of the Year”.
Peter Hammill 1948 – is an English singer-songwriter and a founding member of the progressive rock band Van der Graaf Generator. Best known as a singer, he also plays guitar and piano. He also acts as a record producer for his own recordings and occasionally for other artists. In 2012, he was recognized with the Visionary award at the first Progressive Music Awards.
Bryan Adams 1959 – is a Canadian singer, songwriter, record producer, guitarist, photographer, philanthropist and activist. He rose to fame in North America with his 1983 album Cuts Like a Knife and turned into a global star with his 1984 album Reckless, which produced some of his best known songs, including “Run to You” and “Summer of ’69”. In 1991, he released “(Everything I Do) I Do It for You” from the album Waking Up the Neighbours and the song became a worldwide hit which went to number 1 in many countries, including 16 consecutive weeks in the United Kingdom, a new record. Adams also had the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles “Heaven”, “All for Love” and “Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?”
Jonny Greenwood 1971 – is an English musician and the lead guitarist and keyboardist of the alternative rock band Radiohead. A multi-instrumentalist, Greenwood also plays instruments including the bass guitar, piano, viola, and drums, and is a prominent player of the ondes Martenot, an early electronic instrument. He described his role in the band as an arranger, helping to transform singer Thom Yorke’s demos into full songs. He has been named one of the greatest guitarists of all time by publications including the NME, Rolling Stone and Spin.
Johnny Horton 1960 (b.1925) – was an American country music and rockabilly singer and musician, best known for his saga ballads beginning with the song “The Battle of New Orleans”, which was awarded the 1960 Grammy Award for Best Country & Western Recording. The song was awarded the Grammy Hall of Fame Award and in 2001 ranked No. 333 of the Recording Industry Association of America’s “Songs of the Century”. His first number 1 country song was in 1959, “When It’s Springtime in Alaska (It’s Forty Below)”. During 1960, Horton had two other successes with “Sink the Bismarck” and “North to Alaska” for John Wayne’s movie, North to Alaska. Horton died in November 1960 at the peak of his fame in an automobile accident, less than two years after his breakthrough. Horton is a member of the Rockabilly Hall of Fame and the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame.
Bobby Nunn 1986 (b.1925) – was an American R&B singer with the musical groups The Robins and original bass vocalist of The Coasters. In 1955, Nunn and Carl Gardner split from The Robins to become The Coasters with Leon Hughes and Billy Guy. After leaving The Coasters, he teamed with another former Coaster Leon Hughes to record as The Dukes in 1959. Two singles were released “Looking For You” b/w “Groceries, Sir”, and “I Love You” b/w “Leap Year Cha Cha.”
Billy Guy 2002 (b.1936) – was an American singer, best known as a lead singer for the Coasters. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. He is best known with the Coasters for singing lead on such hits as “Searchin'”, “Little Egypt”, “Run Red Run”, “Wait A Minute”, among others. Songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller praised his “marvelous sense of comedy and timing.”
Bobby Hatfield 2003 (b.1940) – was an American singer, best known as one half of the Righteous Brothers along with Bill Medley. He sang the tenor part for the duo, but his most recognizable work is his 1965 recording of “Unchained Melody” which he performed as a solo. Their first No. 1 was “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,” produced by Phil Spector in 1964. Follow-up hits included “Unchained Melody,” which was actually a Hatfield solo performance. After the success of “Unchained Melody”, Spector then started recording older standards with the Righteous Brothers such as “Ebb Tide”, which Hatfield also performed solo, and it reached the Top 5. In 1966, the Righteous Brothers left Spector and signed with Verve/MGM Records, and had a hit with “(You’re My) Soul and Inspiration”. However the duo broke up in 1968, and Hatfield teamed up with singer Jimmy Walker (from The Knickerbockers) using the Righteous Brothers name on the MGM label.
Link Wray 2005 (b.1929) – was an American rock and roll guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist who became popular in the late 1950’s. Building on the distorted electric guitar sound of early records, his 1958 instrumental hit “Rumble” by Link Wray and his Ray Men popularized “the power chord, the major modus operandi of modern rock guitarists”, facilitating the emergence of “punk and heavy rock”. Rolling Stone placed Wray at No. 45 of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time. In 2013 he was a nominee for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Though he began in country music, his musical style went on to consist primarily of rock and roll, rockabilly, and instrumental rock.
Doug Sahm 1941 (d.1999) – was an American musician who was a child prodigy in country music but became a significant figure in roots rock and other genres. Sahm is considered one of the most important figures in what is identified as Tex-Mex music. He was the founder and leader of the 1960’s rock and roll band, the Sir Douglas Quintet. He would later co-found the Texas Tornados with Augie Meyers, Freddy Fender, and Flaco Jiménezas well as Los Super Seven. He released his first record “A Real American Joe” at age eleven. On December 19, 1952, at the age of eleven, he played on stage with Hank Williams Sr. at the Skyline Club in Austin, Texas. It was Hank Williams’s very last performance. Sahm was offered a permanent spot on the Grand Ole Opry at age thirteen, but his mother wanted him to finish junior high. In 1965, prompted by record producer Huey Meaux, Sahm formed the Sir Douglas Quintet with childhood friend Augie Meyers. They chose the group’s name in an effort to make the band seem British to benefit from the British invasion. The band had a top 20 U.S. hit with “She’s About a Mover” and a lesser hit with “The Rains Came.”
George Young 1946 – is an Australian musician, songwriter and record producer. Born in Scotland, he moved to Australia with his family as a teenager, and became a naturalised citizen. He achieved international success in the 1960’s as the rhythm guitarist in the band The Easybeats; Young co-wrote nearly all of their songs, first with singer Stevie Wright, then later with lead guitarist Harry Vanda. He was co-writer of the international hits “Friday on My Mind” and “Love Is in the Air”, the latter recorded by John Paul Young (no relation). Young was also the producer of some work by the Australian hard rock band AC/DC, formed by his younger brothers Malcolm and Angus Young. After the band dissolved in 1970, Vanda & Young concentrated on writing and producing pop and rock songs for other recording artists, and for themselves under various stage names, most notably Flash and the Pan. One such recording studio-based group was Marcus Hook Roll Band, with his brothers Malcolm and Angus Young.
Glen Frey 1948 (d.2016) – was an American singer, songwriter and actor, best known as a founding member of the rock band Eagles. Frey was the lead singer and frontman for the Eagles, roles he came to share with fellow member Don Henley, with whom he wrote most of the Eagles’ material. Frey played guitar and keyboards as well as singing lead vocals on songs such as “Take It Easy”, “Peaceful Easy Feeling”, “Tequila Sunrise”, “Already Gone”, “Lyin’ Eyes”, “New Kid in Town”, and “Heartache Tonight”. After the breakup of the Eagles in 1980, Frey embarked on a successful solo career. He released his debut album, No Fun Aloud, in 1982 and went on to record Top 40 hits “The One You Love”, “Smuggler’s Blues”, “Sexy Girl”, “The Heat Is On”, “You Belong to the City”, “True Love”, “Soul Searchin'” and “Livin’ Right”.
In 1968, at age 19, Frey played the acoustic guitar and performed background vocals on Bob Seger’s single, “Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Man”. Frey has said that Seger strongly encouraged and influenced him to focus on writing original songs. They remained good friends and occasional songwriting partners in later years, and Frey would also sing on Seger’s songs such as “Fire Lake” and “Against the Wind”.
Rushton Moreve 1948 (d.1981) – was an American bass guitarist best known for his work with the rock band Steppenwolf from 1967–68 and again in 1978. According to singer John Kay, Moreve was an intuitive bassist with a melodic style that brought a non-commercial sound to Steppenwolf, a technique exemplified on the hit he co-wrote with Kay, “Magic Carpet Ride”. This was the only Steppenwolf song Moreve received credit for writing. It was released on the album Steppenwolf the Second.
Chris Glen 1950 – is a Scottish bass guitarist, who has played in The Jade, Tear Gas, The Party Boys, The Sensational Alex Harvey Band (SAHB) (1972–78), John Martyn, and The Michael Schenker Group (1980–84, 2008-2010).
Rick Rosas 2014 (b.1949) – was an American musician, and one of the most sought after studio session musicians in Los Angeles. Throughout his career, he played with Neil Young, Joe Walsh, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Rivers, Ron Wood, Etta James, and the short-lived reunion of the Buffalo Springfield, among others. In 2014, Rosas joined Neil Young and Crazy Horse on their European tour, following Billy Talbot’s inability to tour due to a stroke. This act made Rosas the only bassist to have played with three of Young’s major band-based projects, Buffalo Springfield, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and Crazy Horse.
Johnny Rivers 1942 – is an American rock ‘n’ roll singer, songwriter, guitarist, and record producer. His repertoire includes pop, folk, blues, and old-time rock ‘n’ roll. Rivers charted during the 1960’s and 1970’s but remains best known for a string of hit singles between 1964 and 1968, among them “Memphis” (a Chuck Berry cover), “Mountain of Love”, “The Seventh Son”, “Secret Agent Man”, “Poor Side of Town” (a US #1), “Baby I Need Your Lovin'” (a Motown cover), and “Summer Rain”.
Joni Mitchell 1943 – is a Canadian singer-songwriter and painter. Rolling Stone called her “one of the greatest songwriters ever”, and AllMusic has stated, “When the dust settles, Joni Mitchell may stand as the most important and influential female recording artist of the late 20th century”. Some of her original songs (“Urge for Going”, “Chelsea Morning”, “Both Sides, Now”, “The Circle Game”) were covered by other folk singers, allowing her to sign with Reprise Records and record her debut album in 1968. Settling in Southern California, Mitchell, with popular songs like “Big Yellow Taxi” and “Woodstock”, helped define an era and a generation. Her 1971 album Blue is often cited as one of the best albums of all time; it was rated the 30th best album ever made in Rolling Stone‘s list of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time”, the highest entry by a female artist. In 2000, the New York Times chose Blue as one of the 25 albums that represented “turning points and pinnacles in 20th-century popular music”. In 2017, Blue was chosen by NPR as the greatest female album of all time.
Tommy Thayer 1960 – is an American musician and songwriter, best known as the lead guitarist The Spaceman, for the American hard rock band Kiss, as well as the former lead guitarist for the band Black ‘n Blue. John Kalodner from Geffen Records invited Thayer to play on Jimmy Barnes’ iconic Australian album For The Working Class Man (released outside the Australian market as Jimmy Barnes). Both Barnes and Thayer’s group Black ‘n Blue were signed to Geffen. The album was recorded in Los Angeles and New York in 1984-85. When interviewed some years later he recalled that the two sessions he played on included Mick Fleetwood on drums, and Billy Burnette on guitar.
Leonard Cohen 2016 (b.1934) – was a Canadian singer, songwriter, musician, poet, novelist, and painter. He did not launch a music career until 1967, at the age of 33. His first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen (1967), was followed by three more albums of folk music: Songs from a Room(1969), Songs of Love and Hate (1971) and New Skin for the Old Ceremony (1974). His 1977 record Death of a Ladies’ Man was co-written and produced by Phil Spector, which was a move away from Cohen’s previous minimalist sound. In 1979, Cohen returned with the more traditional Recent Songs, which blended his acoustic style with jazz and Oriental and Mediterranean influences. Perhaps Cohen’s most famous song, “Hallelujah” was first released on his studio album Various Positions in 1984.
Bonnie Bramlett 1944 – is an American singer and occasional actress known for her distinctive vocals in rock and pop music. She began as a backing vocalist for blues and R&B singers (she was the first white woman to sing with Ike and Tina Turner as one of the Ikettes); performed with her husband, Delaney Bramlett, as Delaney & Bonnie; and continues to sing as a solo artist. With frequent drop-in performances by other noted musicians like Duane Allman, George Harrison, and Dave Mason, the group became known as Delaney & Bonnie & Friends. Despite this all-star assistance, only two songs by Delaney and Bonnie reached the charts, their best-known “Never Ending Song of Love” and a cover of Mason’s “Only You Know and I Know”. Delaney and Bonnie co-wrote, with Leon Russell, “Superstar,” popularized by the Carpenters, and the classic “Let It Rain”, which is included on Clapton’s eponymous first album. In 1969, The Rolling Stones originally asked Bonnie to sing a duet with Mick Jagger on their now-infamous song “Gimme Shelter”, but Bramlett’s husband, Delaney, refused to let her perform with the Stones. The Stones then asked soul and gospel singer Merry Clayton to sing on the track. It remains the most prominent contribution to a Rolling Stones track by a female vocalist.
Roy Wood 1947 – is an English singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He was particularly successful in the 1960’s and 1970’s as member and co-founder of the Move, Electric Light Orchestra and Wizzard. As a songwriter, he contributed a number of hits to the repertoire of these bands. The BBC has described Wood as being “responsible for some of the most memorable sounds of the Seventies” and “credited as playing a major role in the Glam Rock, Psychedelic and Prog Rock movements”. In 2015, his long and eclectic career was recognised with the “Outer Limits” award at the Progressive Music Awards in London. Wood was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017 as a member of Electric Light Orchestra.
Minnie Riperton 1947 (d.1979) – was an American singer-songwriter best known for her 1975 single “Lovin’ You” and her five-octave vocal range. Her early affiliation with the legendary Chicago-based Chess Records afforded her the opportunity to sing backup for various established artists such as Etta James, Fontella Bass, Ramsey Lewis, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, and Muddy Waters. While at Chess, Riperton also sang lead for the experimental rock/soul group Rotary Connection, from 1967 to 1971.
Bonnie Raitt 1949 – is an American blues singer-songwriter, musician, and activist. During the 1970’s, Raitt released a series of roots-influenced albums that incorporated elements of blues, rock, folk and country. In 1989, after several years of critical acclaim but little commercial success, she had a major hit with the album Nick of Time. The following two albums, Luck of the Draw (1991) and Longing in Their Hearts (1994), were also multimillion sellers, generating several hit singles, including “Something to Talk About”, “Love Sneakin’ Up on You”, and the ballad “I Can’t Make You Love Me” (with Bruce Hornsby on piano).
Gerald Alston 1951 – is an American R&B singer, and the lead singer with the Manhattans. Between 1988 and 1995, he left the group to record five albums (later recording his tribute to Sam Cooke in 2008) and ten solo singles, including “Take Me Where You Want To,” “Slow Motion,” a remake of Atlantic Starr’s “Send For Me,” and “Activated,” most of which was for Motown Records. He joined the Manhattans in 1970, shortly after the death of their former lead singer George Smith and helped the group remain a fixture on the R&B top ten as lead on songs like “Kiss And Say Goodbye,” “There’s No Me Without You”, and “Shining Star”. He is the nephew of Shirley Alston Reeves, former lead singer of The Shirelles and rejoined the group in 1995 after finding that “his solo career wasn’t what he thought it would have been.”
Rickie Lee Jones 1954 – is an American vocalist, musician, songwriter, producer, actor and narrator. Over the course of a career that spans five decades, Jones has recorded in various musical styles including rock, R&B, blues, pop, soul, and jazz. Her self-titled debut album was released in March 1979 and became a hit, buoyed by the success of the jazz-flavored single “Chuck E.’s In Love”, which hit No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100, and featured an accompanying music video. The album, which included guest appearances by Dr. John, Randy Newman, and Michael McDonald, went to No. 3 on the Billboard200 and produced another Top 40 hit with “Young Blood” (No. 40) in late 1979.
Guy Speranza 2003 (b.1956) – was an American singer best known as New York-based metal band Riot’s original frontman from 1976 to 1981. He played at the first Monsters of Rock festival in 1980 and sang on their first three albums, 1977’s Rock City, 1979’s Narita and 1981’s Fire Down Under, before leaving the band in 1981. In 1982, Scott Ian called Speranza to offer him the position as the lead singer for Anthrax which he declined, saying he was done with the music business.
Mary Travers 1936 (d.2009) – was an American singer-songwriter and member of the folk music group Peter, Paul and Mary, along with Peter Yarrow and (Noel) Paul Stookey. Peter, Paul and Mary was one of the most successful folk-singing groups of the 1960’s. The group Peter, Paul and Mary was formed in 1961, and was an immediate success. The group’s first album [Peter, Paul and Mary] came out in 1962 and immediately scored hits with their versions of “If I Had a Hammer” and “Lemon Tree”. The former won them Grammy’s for best folk recording and best performance by a vocal group. Their next album, Moving, included the hit tale of innocence lost, “Puff, The Magic Dragon”, which reached No. 2 on the [U.S.] charts. The trio’s third album, In the Wind, featured three songs by the 22-year-old Bob Dylan. “Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right” and “Blowin’ in the Wind” reached the [U.S.] top 10, bringing Dylan’s material to a massive audience; the latter shipped 300,000 copies during one two-week period. The group broke up in 1970, shortly after having their biggest U.K. hit (#2), singer/songwriter John Denver’s iconic ballad “Leaving on a Jet ‘Plane” which also made No. 1 on both the U.S. Billboard and Cash Box charts in December 1969, the only single to hit number one for the group.
Tom Fogerty 1941 (d.1990) – was an American musician, best known as the rhythm guitarist for Creedence Clearwater Revival. He was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993. During the few years of the life of CCR, Tom sang backing vocals and wrote songs, but only one of his songs (“Walking on the Water”) was recorded. This lack of opportunity, along with festering, long-standing animosity with his brother, led him to leave the band in 1971.
Phil May 1944 – is an English vocalist. He gained fame in the 1960s as the lead singer of The Pretty Things, of which he was a founding member. May has maintained membership throughout the band’s line-up, which otherwise underwent many changes over the years, and he was one of the band’s main lyricists. He was the primary lyricist for the album, S.F. Sorrow. Controversy still exists as to which band member had the original idea for the piece.
Joe Bouchard 1948 – is an American guitarist and bassist. He was the bassist for Blue Öyster Cult during their most successful period. He is the brother of former Blue Öyster Cult drummer Albert Bouchard. He joined Soft White Underbelly, the group that would become Blue Öyster Cult, as a bassist in the summer of 1970, although he had already been jamming and performing occasionally with the band for a few years. Bouchard’s songwriting contributions often dealt with otherworldly themes, such as “Nosferatu” and “Light Years of Love”. He left Blue Öyster Cult in 1986, and since then has worked with several musical projects, including the Spencer Davis Group, and appeared on records by Deadringer(with Neal Smith & Dennis Dunaway), Fabienne Shine and his own X Brothers.
Tommy Caldwell 1949 (d.1980) – was the bassist and original frontman for The Marshall Tucker Band between 1973 and 1980. He was the younger brother of bandmate and band co-founder, Toy Caldwell. He composed several of their songs and played bass, percussion, guitar, as well as contributing backup vocals, though he sang lead on “Melody Ann” the only song on which he performed lead vocals. The Charlie Daniels Band’s 1980 album Full Moon is dedicated to Caldwell.
Andy White 2015 (b.1930) – was a Scottish drummer, primarily a session musician. He was affectionately christened “the fifth Beatle” as he is best known for replacing Ringo Starr on drums on the Beatles’ first single, “Love Me Do”. White was featured on the American 7″ single release of the song, which also appeared on the band’s debut British album, Please Please Me. He also played on “P.S. I Love You”, which was the B-side of “Love Me Do”. He also played with other prominent musicians and groups both in the United Kingdom and the United States, including Chuck Berry, Billy Fury, Herman’s Hermits and Tom Jones. AllMusic called White “one of the busier drummers in England from the late ’50s through the mid-’70s”. In 1960 in London White recorded with Billy Fury on Fury’s first album, The Sound of Fury, which is generally regarded as Britain’s first rock and roll album.
Screaming Lord Sutch 1940 (d.1999) – was an English musician and the founder of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party and served as its leader from 1983 to 1999, during which time he stood in numerous parliamentary elections. He holds the record for losing more than 40 elections in which he stood from 1963 to 1997. As a singer he variously worked with Keith Moon, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Ritchie Blackmore, Charlie Watts and Nicky Hopkins. During the 1960’s, Screaming Lord Sutch was known for his horror-themed stage show, dressing as Jack the Ripper, pre-dating the shock rock antics of Alice Cooper. Accompanied by his band, the Savages, he started by coming out of a black coffin (once being trapped inside of it, an incident parodied in the film Slade in Flame). utch’s album Lord Sutch and Heavy Friends was named in a 1998 BBC poll as the worst album of all time, a status it also held in Colin Larkin’s book The Top 1000 Albums of All Time, despite the fact that Jimmy Page, John Bonham, Jeff Beck, Noel Redding and Nicky Hopkins performed on it and helped write it.
Greg Lake 1940 (d.2016) – was an English bassist, guitarist, singer, songwriter, and producer who gained prominence as a founder member of the progressive rock bands King Crimson and Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP). Lake began to play the guitar at the age of 12 and wrote his first song, “Lucky Man”, at the same age. He became a full-time musician at 17, playing in several rock bands until fellow guitarist Robert Fripp invited him to join King Crimson as their singer and bassist. They found commercial success with their influential debut album, In the Court of the Crimson King (1969). Lake left the band in 1970 and achieved significant success in the 1970’s and beyond as the singer, guitarist, bassist, and producer of ELP. As a member of ELP, Lake wrote and recorded several popular songs including “Lucky Man” and “From the Beginning”. Lake launched a solo career, beginning with his 1975 single “I Believe in Father Christmas” which reached number two in the UK. He went on to release solo albums and singles thereafter, collaborating with several artists in the process. Lake performed with various groups in the 1980’s, and occasional ELP reunions in the 1990’s, and toured regularly as a solo artist into the 21st century. He briefly joined the 1980’s supergroup Asia, replacing fellow King Crimson alumnus John Wetton, and then co-formed Emerson, Lake & Powell with drummer Cozy Powell.
Glen Buxton 1947 (d.1997) – was an American musician, and guitarist for the original Alice Cooper band. In 2003, Rolling Stone ranked Buxton number 90 on its list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time. Buxton was the co-writer of hit songs like “School’s Out”, “I’m Eighteen”, “Elected,” and “10 Minutes Before the Worm”. He is credited as lead guitarist on seven albums by Alice Cooper, including the chart-topping Billion Dollar Babies. His final album with Alice Cooper was 1973’s Muscle of Love. In an interview with Marc Maron, according to Alice Cooper, “Glen ended up being one of the great Rock guitar players of all time. He created “School’s Out”. He created all that stuff. He was the only guy that could jam with Syd Barrett.”
Allen Toussaint 2015 (b.1938) – was an American musician, songwriter, arranger and record producer, who was an influential figure in New Orleans R&B from the 1950’s to the end of the century, described as “one of popular music’s great backroom figures.” Many musicians recorded Toussaint’s compositions, including “Java”, “Mother-in-Law”, “I Like It Like That”, “Fortune Teller”, “Ride Your Pony”, “Get Out of My Life, Woman”, “Working in the Coal Mine”, “Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky”, “Here Come the Girls”, “Yes We Can Can”, “Play Something Sweet”, and “Southern Nights”. He was a producer for hundreds of recordings, among the best known of which are “Right Place, Wrong Time”, by his longtime friend Dr. John (“Mac” Rebennack), and “Lady Marmalade”, by Labelle.
Mose Allison 1927 (d.2016) – was an American jazz and blues pianist, singer, and songwriter. He became notable for playing a unique mix of blues and modern jazz, both singing and playing piano. He is described as having been “one of the finest songwriters in 20th-century blues.” His writing influence on R&B had well-known fans recording his songs, among them Pete Townshend, who recorded his “Young Man Blues” for the Who’s “Live At Leeds” album in 1970. John Mayall was one of dozens who recorded his classic, “Parchman Farm”, and Georgie Fame used many of Allison’s songs. Others who recorded his songs included Leon Russell (“I’m Smashed”) and Bonnie Raitt (“Everybody’s Crying’ Mercy”). Allison’s music had an important influence on other performers, such as Tom Waits, Jimi Hendrix, the Yardbirds, the Rolling Stones, and Pete Townshend.
Chris Dreja 1945 – is an English musician, best known as the rhythm guitarist and bassist for The Yardbirds. After the group broke up, Jimmy Page offered Dreja the position of bassist in a new band he was forming (later to become Led Zeppelin). Dreja declined in order to pursue a profession in photography. He photographed Led Zeppelin for the back cover of their debut album. He played in the Yardbirds spin-off band Box of Frogs in the 1980’s, and had been part of the Yardbirds’ reformation from 1992 to 2013.
Vince Martell 1945 – is best known as the lead guitarist for Vanilla Fudge. In 1966, he formed the band The Pidgeons with organist Mark Stein, bassist Tim Bogert and drummer Joe Brennan. After Brennan was replaced by Carmine Appice and a record deal forced the band to change its name, the band became Vanilla Fudge. After the breakup of Vanilla Fudge in 1970, Martell continued to perform until Vanilla Fudge reunited for another album in 1984 called Mystery. In 2000, he released his first solo CD, Endless High, followed in 2001 by a self-titled CD, Vince Martell. In 2002, he recorded a third solo CD as a tribute to Jimi Hendrix, whom Martell had befriended when Vanilla Fudge and Hendrix toured together.
Robert John “Mutt” Lange 1948 – is a South African record producer and songwriter. He is known for his work in the studio and innovations in multitrack recording and producing many of history’s greatest rock albums. He has produced albums for, or otherwise worked with, artists such as AC/DC, Britney Spears, Def Leppard, The Boomtown Rats, Foreigner, Michael Bolton, The Cars, Bryan Adams, Huey Lewis and the News, Billy Ocean, The Corrs, Maroon 5, Lady Gaga, Nickelback, and Muse. He also wrote and produced songs with his then-wife, Canadian singer Shania Twain. Her 1997 album Come On Over, which he produced, is the best-selling country music album, the best-selling studio album by a female act, the best-selling album of the 1990’s, and the 9th best-selling album in the United States.
Jim Peterik 1950 – is an American musician and songwriter. He is best known as the founder of the band Survivor, as vocalist and songwriter of “Vehicle” by the Ides of March, and as co-writer of the anthem “Eye of the Tiger”, the theme from the motion picture Rocky III. Peterik has co-written songs for 38 Special (Rockin’ Into The Night, Hold On Loosely), Lynyrd Skynyrd, Blackhawk, Cheap Trick, Sammy Hagar (Heavy Metal), Cathy Richardson, Van Zant, Brian Wilson, REO Speedwagon, and The Beach Boys.
Andy Partridge 1953 – is an English singer, songwriter, guitarist, and record producer who is best known for co-founding the rock band XTC, in which he served as the group’s primary songwriter and vocalist. While the band was formed as an early punk rock group, Partridge’s music drew heavily from British Invasion songwriters, and his style gradually shifted to more traditional pop, often with pastoral themes. The band’s only British top 10 hit, “Senses Working Overtime” (1982), was written by Partridge. Partridge has cited Brian Wilson, Burt Bacharach, Paul McCartney, and Ray Davies as personal influences and has also stated that he is a fan of Captain Beefheart. Singer and multi-instrumentalist Steven Wilson named Partridge one of his favourite songwriters of all time: “What I love about Andy’s music is that every song he writes has a very strong concept or idea behind it. He’s not just rattling off love songs or songs about how lonely he is. Every song has a little twist to it, and it’s so clever, so smart.”
Berry Oakley 1972 (b.1948) – was an American bassist and one of the founding members of the Allman Brothers Band. He is ranked number 46 on Bass Player magazine’s list of “The 100 Greatest Bass Players of All Time”. Oakley was known for his long, melodic bass runs that formed a throbbing foundation underneath Allman and Betts’ furious guitar solos and jams. “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed”, “Mountain Jam” and “Whipping Post” from the live album At Fillmore East capture Oakley at his best. Oakley was also the band member most involved in establishing domestic unity among the band’s extended family. When Duane Allman died in a motorcycle accident on October 29, 1971, Oakley was devastated. On November 11, 1972, Oakley was involved in a motorcycle accident which caused his death in Macon, Georgia, just three blocks from where Duane Allman had his fatal motorcycle accident the year before. Coincidentally, both Allman and Oakley were both 24 when they died.
Phil Taylor 2015 (b.1954) – better known as Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor, was an English rock drummer in the English rock band Motörhead from 1975–1984 and 1987–1992 recording eleven studio albums and four live albums, including No Sleep ’til Hammersmith and Nö Sleep at All, between them. The Motörhead line-up consisting of Lemmy, “Fast” Eddie Clarke and Taylor are considered the ‘classic’ line-up of the band.
Brian Hyland 1943 – is an American pop recording artist who was particularly successful during the early 1960’s. He continued recording into the 1970’s. In August 1960, Hyland scored his first and biggest hit single at the age of 16, “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini”. It was a novelty song that reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and sold almost a million copies in the first two months of its release, and over two million copies in total. Hyland’s other major hit during this period was 1962’s “Sealed with a Kiss”, which reached #3 in 1962 on both the American and UK Singles Chart.
John Walker 1943 (d.2011) – was an American singer, songwriter and guitarist, best known as the founder of The Walker Brothers, who had their greatest success in the 1960’s, particularly in the United Kingdom.
Mitch Mitchell 2008 (b.1947) – was an English drummer who was best known for his work in the Jimi Hendrix Experience. He was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 2009. Early in his career, he gained considerable musical experience as a touring and session musician, working with Pete Nelson and the Travellers, Frankie Reid and the Casuals (1962), Johnny Harris and the Shades, the Pretty Things, Bill Knight & the Sceptres, the Riot Squad, and the Who as a session drummer while the band was in the process of replacing Doug Sandom with Keith Moon. From December 1965 until October 1966, Mitchell was the drummer of Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames, appearing on their 1966 album, Sweet Things. Mitchell auditioned for Hendrix’s band in October 1966, edging out drummer Aynsley Dunbar on the flip of a coin. Mitchell’s fast, driving, jazz influenced playing meshed well with Hendrix’s open-ended, revolutionary approach to the electric guitar. Mitchell came from a jazz background, and like many of his contemporaries in the London scene, was influenced by Elvin Jones, Max Roach, and Joe Morello. He played in Hendrix’s Experience trio from October 1966 to mid-1969, in the Woodstock band, (August 1969), and in the 1970 “Experience” version with Billy Cox on bass, known posthumously as the “Cry of Love band”. In December 1968, Mitchell played with the Dirty Mac, an all-star band assembled for The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus. Others included John Lennon as vocalist and rhythm guitarist “Winston Leg-Thigh”; Yoko Ono providing improvised primal screams; Eric Clapton as guitarist, and Keith Richards as bassist. The group recorded a cover of “Yer Blues” as well as a jam called “Whole Lotta Yoko”. While working with Hendrix from late 1969 until early 1970, Mitchell also collaborated with the Jack Bruce and Friends band fronted by ex-Cream bassist/vocalist Jack Bruce, with keyboardist Mike Mandel and jazz-fusion guitarist and future the Eleventh House frontman Larry Coryell. Mitchell also took part in Miles Davis’ demo sessions for the 1969 album Bitches Brew, but did not appear on the final album.