Steve's Dead Rock Stars


*** 2015 ***

Claim to Fame
Cause of Death
12/31/201565Natalie ColesingerHeart FailureLos Angeles, California

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Natalie Cole

February 6, 1950 - December 31, 2015

Natalie Cole, the daughter of singer Nat King Cole, has died at the age of 65.

Her breakout hit was 1975's "This Will Be," but she may be best remembered for the 1991 album "Unforgettable... With Love." The album included her recording of the song "Unforgettable," which was a posthumous duet with her late father.

Cole, a nine-time Grammy Award-winning singer, died of congestive heart failure at a Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

12/28/201570LemmyMotörhead, vocalsHeart FailureLos Angeles, California

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December 24, 2015 - December 28, 2015

Ian Fraser "Lemmy" Kilmister was the singer and songwriter who founded the heavy metal band Motörhead.

12/24/201574William GuestGladys Knight and the Pips, vocalsHeart FailureDetroit, Michigan

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William Guest

July 2, 1941 - December 24, 2015

William Guest, a member of Gladys Knight and the Pips, has died. He was 74.

12/6/201569Holly WoodlawnAndy Warhol associateCancerLos Angeles, California

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Holly Woodlawn

October 26, 1946 - December 6, 2015

Born Haroldo Santiago Franceschi Rodriguez Danhakl, Holly Woodlawn was a transgender pioneer and associate of Andy Warhol, appearing in several of his films.

As a drag queen, she acted in underground films such as Trash (1970), Twin Falls Idaho (1999) and Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss (1998). She also appeared in various roles in cabaret and theatre.

The first verse of Lou Reed's song "Walk on the Wild Side" documents Woodlawn at age 16 when she left Miami for the streets of New York:

Holly came from Miami, F-L-A
Hitchhiked her way across the USA
Plucked her eyebrows on the way
Shaved her legs and then he was a she
She says, "Hey, babe, take a walk on the wild side."

Holly Woodlawn died from brain and liver cancer on December 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.

12/3/201548Scott WeilandStone Temple Pilots / Velvet Revolver, vocalsHeart FailureBloomington, Minnesota

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Scott Weiland

October 27, 1967 - December 3, 2015

Scott Weiland, lead singer of the Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver has died at age 48. He passed away in his sleep while on a tour stop in Bloomington, Minnesota, with his band The Wildabouts. Just a few months earlier, The Wildabouts guitarist, Jeremy Brown, passed away.

Weilands career was overshadowed by his long battle with drug addiction.

12/1/201575Alex CooleyConcert Promoter Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

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Alex Cooley

1939 - December 1, 2015

Alex Cooley was an Atlanta area concert promoter. He helped organize the huge Atlanta International Pop Festival in 1969, bringing Janis Joplin to Atlanta for her first show in the Southeast and a second Atlanta International Pop Festival in 1970 featuring Jimi Hendrix as a headliner. This event was held on July 4, 1970 in Byron, Georgia in a field adjacent to the Middle Georgia Raceway.

He helped to put on the Mar Y Sol Pop Festival held in Puerto Rico on April 1-3, 1972. This event was not considered successful as it was marred by several accidental deaths and a murder. An arrest warrant was issued Alex Cooley, who managed to avoid being arrested by leaving the island before the festival was over.

Between 1974 and 1979, he ran Alex Cooley's Electric Ballroom, a downtown Atlanta venue that brought acts such as Bruce Springsteen, the Ramones, Tom Waits, Patti Smith, and Rush to the city.

11/23/201571Cynthia RobinsonSly and the Family Stone, trumpeterCancerCarmichael, California

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Cynthia Robinson

January 12, 1946 - November 23, 2015

Cynthia Robinson, trumpeter for Sly and the Family Stone has died at the age of 71.

Her trumpet work and vocals can be heard on songs like "Dance to the Music" and "I Want to Take You Higher."

11/17/201551David VanLandingThe Michael Schenker Group, vocalistcar accidentClearwater, Florida

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David VanLanding

October 6, 1964 - November 17, 2015

David VanLanding, vocalist for the The Michael Schenker Group from 1997 until 1999 and again in the 2011 and 2012 tours, died in a car crash after colliding with a garbage truck in Clearwater, Florida.

VanLanding had planned to rejoin Schenker on the Axes & Anchors Cruise in January, 2016.

11/15/201570P.F. SloansongwriterPancreatic CancerLos Angeles, California

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P.F. Sloan

September 18, 1945 - November 15, 2015

P.F. Sloan wrote songs that became hits for The Turtles, The Grass Roots, and many others. Notable songs he wrote or co-wrote include "Secret Agent Man" (Johnny Rivers), "Eve of Destruction" (Barry McGuire), "A Must to Avoid" (Herman's Hermit's) and many others.

11/10/201577Allen Toussaintkeyboardist Madrid, Spain

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Allen Toussaint

January 14, 1938 - November 10, 2015

Allen Toussaint, whose work as a songwriter, producer, and performer helped define the sound of soul and R&B in New Orleans and beyond, died following a performance in Madrid, Spain. He was 77.

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" and "Play Something Sweet." "Southern Nights" a song written by Allen Toussaint, reached number 1 when recorded by Glen Campbell in 1977. He was also a producer for hundreds of recordings, among the best known of which are "Right Place, Wrong Time" by Dr. John and "Lady Marmalade" by Labelle.

Most of Toussaint's possessions, including his home and recording studio, Sea Saint, were lost during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Toussaint was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988, the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2009, and the Blues Hall of Fame in 2011. In 2013 he was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama.

11/9/201585Andy WhiteBeatles, drummerStrokeCaldwell, New Jersey

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Andy White

July 27, 1930 - November 9, 2015

Andy White, drummer on 'Love Me Do' and considered a 'fifth Beatle,' has died after suffering from a stroke. Mr. White played drums on the Beatles U.S. version of "Love Me Do" in 1962, while Ringo Starr played tambourine on the track. "Love Me Do" was the Beatles first single, released in the United States in 1964. The song went to No. 1. The B side was "P.S. I Love You."

Before moving to the United States, White often worked a session drummer for EMI at the Abbey Road Studios in London, appearing on many tracks. He reportedly was the drummer on Tom Jones' "It's Not Unusual."

Others considered "The Fifth Beatle" include Pete Best, George Martin, Jimmie Nicol, Stuart Sutcliffe, and Billy Preston.

11/7/201571Eddie Hohdrummer Westmont, Illinois

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Eddie Hoh

October 16, 1944 - November 7, 2015

Eddie Hoh was rock session drummer active in the 1960s. Often uncredited, he played the drums on several well-known rock songs and albums, including those by Donovan and the Monkees. He also performed at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival as a member of the Mamas and the Papas touring band. In 1968, he participated in the recording of Super Session, the highly successful Mike Bloomfield/Al Kooper/Stephen Stills collaboration album.

After completing an album with Harvey Mandel (Games Guitars Play, released in 1970), Eddie Hoh apparently stopped recording and performing. He remained out of the public eye until his death. He died at a nursing home in Westmont, Illinois on November 7, 2015, aged 71, from undisclosed causes.

11/3/201561Raul RekowSantana, percussionCancerSan Francisco, California

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Raul Rekow

June 10, 1954 - November 3, 2015

Raul Rekow, who played percussion with the Santana Band from 1976 until 2013, has died. Rekow also played on recordings by Aretha Franklin, Herbie Hancock and Whitney Houston, while releasing solo music and doing instructional film work.

10/20/201574Cory WellsThree Dog Night, vocalist Dunkirk, New York

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Cory Wells

February 2, 1941 - October 20, 2015

Cory Wells, an original member and one of the three vocalists of Three Dog Night, died in his sleep at home in Dunkirk, New York at the age of 74.

Earlier in 2015, another member of Three Dog Night, Jimmy Greenspoon, died of cancer in North Potomac, Maryland, at the age of 67.

10/6/201573Billy Joe Royalsinger Morehead City, North Carolina

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Billy Joe Royal

April 3, 1942 - October 6, 2015

Billy Joe Royal was an American pop and country singer. His most successful record was 1976's "Down in the Boondocks" written by his friend Joe South.

Royal died in his sleep on October 6, 2015 in Morehead City, North Carolina.

9/13/201565Gary RichrathREO Speedwagon, guitarist Bloomington, Illinois

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Gary Richrath

October 18, 1949 - September 13, 2015

Gary Dean Richrath was the lead guitarist and a songwriter for REO Speedwagon from 1970 until 1989. In 1992, Richrath released a solo album, Only the Strong Survive.

Richrath joined his former REO Speedwagon bandmates for a 2013 benefit concert in Bloomington, Illinois, to raise money for tornado victims.

9/5/201566Dennis GreeneSha Na Na, singerEsophageal CancerDayton, Ohio

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Dennis Greene

January 11, 1949 - September 5, 2015

Frederick "Dennis" Greene was a member of Sha Na Na, the vocal group who were formed in 1969 at New York's Columbia University.

Greene choreographed most of the moves for the Sha Na Na television show which aired from 1978 to 1981. Denny was portrayed in the show as the most intelligent member of Sha Na Na. He sang lead in the song "Tears on My Pillow" when he appeared with Sha Na Na in the 1978 movie Grease.

Denny performed at Woodstock with Sha Na Na - the band was on stage just before Jimi Hendrix.

Greene left the group in 1984, furthered his education with a master's degree at Harvard and a law degree at Yale, and became a Columbia Pictures executive and then a law professor. Greene taught at Florida A&M, the University of Oregon and, from 2001 until his death, the University of Dayton where he taught classes on torts, entertainment law and constitutional law.

Greene died in a Dayton, Ohio hospital after a brief battle with esophageal cancer.

7/30/201567Lynn Andersoncountry singerHeart FailureNashville, Tennessee

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Lynn Anderson

September 26, 1947 - July 30, 2015

Lynn Anderson, whose version of Joe South's song "(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden" was one of the biggest country hits of the 1970s, has died. She was 67.

7/29/201578Buddy EmmonsPedal Steel guitar player

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Buddy Emmons

January 27, 1937 - July 29, 2015

Buddy Emmons, regarded as one of the world's finest pedal steel guitarists, has died at age 78.

At the age of 18, Buddy joined "Little" Jimmy Dickens' band. He penned two instrumentals while in Jimmy's band ("Raising the Dickens" and "Buddie's Boogie") that have become pedal steel standards. Later Buddy Emmons played with two of the most legendary backing bands in country music: Ernest Tubb's Texas Troubadours, and Ray Prices' Cherokee Cowboys.

Emmons recorded with country music greats and toured as the bass player in Roger Miller's band. He also worked with a wide variety of other musicians including Linda Ronstadt, The Everly Brothers, John Hartford, Ray Price, Judy Collins, and Lenny Breau.

Emmons never officially retired, and continued to play at steel guitar shows and other functions, and was known to frequent NPR's A Prairie Home Companion.

7/22/201549Daron Norwoodcountry singer Hereford, Texas

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Daron Norwood

September 30, 1965 - July 22, 2015

Norwood recorded two albums for Giant records (1993's Daron Norwood and 1995's Ready, Willing and Able) before he quit his career as a country singer because of his addiction to alcohol. Norwood's debut single, "If It Wasn't for Her, I Wouldn't Have You," came in 1993, with the follow-up, "Cowboys Don't Cry," the next year. Both reached country music's Top 30 chart.

In 1997, Norwood founded "Keep It Straight," a program to help warn kids about the perils of drugs and alcohol abuse and violence.

7/20/201572Wayne Carsonsongwriter Nashville, Tennessee

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Wayne Carson

May 31, 1943 - July 20, 2015

Wayne Carson, a Nashville musician and songwriter who penned hits such as the Willie Nelson classic "Always On My Mind," and The Box Tops' "The Letter," has died. He was 72.

Carson's first No. 1 hit was the 1966 recording of his song "Somebody Like Me," performed by Eddy Arnold. The Box Tops had a Number 1 hit with "The Letter;" the song was also covered by Joe Cocker and Leon Russell.

6/27/2015 Chris SquireYES, bassistAcute erythroid leukemiaPhoenix, Arizona

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Chris Squire

March 4, 1948- June 27, 2015

Chris Squire was a founding member and bassist of the progressive Rock band, YES. He died June 27, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona.

6/11/201585Ornette Colemanjazz saxophonistHeart FailureNew York, New York

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Ornette Coleman

March 9, 1930 (?) - June 11, 2015

Randolph Denard Ornette Coleman was an American jazz saxophonist, violinist, trumpeter, and composer. He was one of the major innovators of the free jazz movement of the 1960s, a term he invented with the name of a 1961 album.

6/6/201588Ronnie GilbertThe Weavers Mill Valley, California

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Ronnie Gilbert

September 7, 1926 - June 6, 2015

Singer Ronnie Gilbert, a member of the influential 1950s folk group The Weavers, died at her home in California. She was 88.

The Weavers were known for singing American folk standards, including "This Land Is Your Land", "If I Had a Hammer", "On Top of Old Smoky" and "Goodnight, Irene." They also popularized songs from other cultures, including "Wimoweh" from Africa. This work laid the groundwork for the folk music boom, paving the way for the Kingston Trio, Peter, Paul & Mary and later, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and Phil Ochs.

Other original members of the Weavers quartet included Pete Seeger (died 2014), Lee Hays (died 1981), and Fred Hellerman (died 2016).

6/1/201592Jean Ritchiefolksinger Berea, Kentucky

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Jean Ritchie

December 8, 1922 - June 1, 2015

Jean Ritchie was an influential American folk music singer, songwriter, and Appalachian dulcimer player.

5/27/2015 Dennis SheehanU2 Tour Manager Los Angeles, California

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Dennis Sheehan

Longtime U2 tour manager Dennis Sheehan died Wednesday, May 27, 2015 in a West Hollywood motel room. He had been with U2 for more than 30 years.

5/21/201560Louis JohnsonThe Brothers Johnson Las Vegas, Nevada

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Louis Johnson

April 13, 1955 - May 21, 2015

Louis Johnson was the bassist and founding member of The Brothers Johnson, a band he formed with his brother George. They scored several Funk hits in the 1970s including songs "Strawberry Letter 23", "I'll Be Good to You" and "Stomp!".

George and Louis Johnson later joined Billy Preston's band and wrote selections for his albums Music Is My Life and The Kids & Me before leaving his group in 1973.

Louis also did much bass guitar session work, notably on Michael Jackson's top-selling album, Thriller.

Louis Johnson was found dead at his home in Las Vegas, May 21, 2015. The cause of death was gastrointestinal bleeding of the esophagus.

5/14/201589B. B. Kingblues great Las Vegas, Nevada

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B. B. King

September 15, 1925 - May 14, 2015

5/9/201588Johnny Gimblefiddler Dripping Springs, Texas

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Johnny Gimble

May 30, 1926 - May 9, 2015

Fiddler Johnny Gimble, who gained fame for his backup work with country stars from Merle Haggard to Carrie Underwood, has died.

Gimble played on albums by Conway Twitty, Connie Smith, Lefty Frizzell, Ray Price, Willie Nelson, and Chet Atkins. He also released 10 solo albums and toured with Willie Nelson from 1979 to 1981.

5/6/201571Errol BrownHot Chocolate, vocalistLiver CancerThe Bahamas

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Errol Brown

November 12, 1943 - May 6, 2015

Errol Brown, the singer for Hot Chocolate on their 1970s hits such as "You Sexy Thing" and "Every 1's a Winner," has died of liver cancer at age 71.

Brown later went on to a successful solo career and was appointed a Member of the British Empire in 2003. Brown also co-wrote "Brother Louie," a song about an interracial romance, which was covered by the U.S. band Stories in 1973. Stories' version hit No. 1.

5/4/201528Travis Hilljazz trumpeterSepsis-induced CardiomyopathyTokyo, Japan

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Travis 'Trumpet Black' Hill

Travis 'Trumpet Black' Hill, a New Orleans trumpeter, grandson of New Orleans R&B great Jessie "Ooh Poo Pah Doo" Hill and cousin of Trombone Shorty, has died at 28. An infection rose after a minor dental procedure to cap an abscessed tooth, causing him to be rushed to a Tokyo hospital. The infection then spread to his heart, killing him.

Travis Hill had performed with the Trombone Shorty Brass Band and with groups including the New Birth and Lil Rascals brass bands before spending nearly nine years in prison for armed robbery. He got out in 2011 and was soon working again as a musician. He played with a number of groups including his own band, Trumpet Black and the Heart Attacks.

His silver trumpet was stolen during his funeral service. His brother, Leroy Hill, is offering a $3500 reward for the return of the instrument.

5/2/201587Guy Carawanfolksinger New Market, Tennessee

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Guy Carawan

July 27, 1927 - May 2, 2015

Folk singer Guy Carawan, who introduced the song "We Shall Overcome" to the 1960s civil rights movement, has died after a lengthy illness. He was 87.

5/1/2015 John ToutRenaissance, keyboardistLung FailureLondon, England

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John Tout

John Tout, former keyboardist for British prog-rock band Renaissance, died of May 1, 2015 at the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead, London.

4/30/201576Ben E. Kingsinger Hackensack, New Jersey

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Ben E. King

September 28, 1938 - April 30, 2015

Singer Ben E. King, whose hit "Stand by Me" became a classic wedding song of love and devotion, has died.

Stand by Me was written with Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller and later featured in the movie of the same name.

King was one of the principal singers of the R&B vocal group the Drifters. He sang on many of the Drifters biggest songs, including "Save the Last Dance for Me", "This Magic Moment", and "I Count the Tears."

King died at the Hackensack University Medical Center on April 30, 2015 at the age of 76. He had been suffering from coronary problems.

4/27/201571Jack ElyKingsmen, singer Redmond, Oregon

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Jack Ely

September 11, 1943 - April 27, 2015

Jack Ely was the singer for Ely and his Kingsmen when they recorded their version of "Louie Louie" in 1963.

4/27/201552Suzanne CroughPartridge Family Laughlin, Nevada

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Suzanne J. Crough

March 5, 1963 - April 27, 2015

Suzanne Crough was an American child actress best known for her role as Tracy Partridge on The Partridge Family. On the TV show, Tracy was the youngest member of the family band. She sang background vocals and played tambourine.

After The Partridge Family, she made several TV movies and made many guest appearances on television shows. She later operated a bookstore and was a manager at an OfficeMax in Bullhead City, Arizona.

Crough died suddenly at her home in Laughlin, Nevada, on April 27, 2015, at the age of 52. David Cassidy, who played the role of Keith Partridge, died in 2017 and Dave Madden, who played manager Reuben Kincaid, died in January 2014.

4/16/201554Johnny KempR&B singerDrownedMontego Bay, Jamaica

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Johnny Kemp

August 2, 1959 - April 16, 2015

Singer Johnny Kemp, best known for the 1988 party anthem "Just Got Paid," has drowned in Jamaica.

"Just Got Paid" was a No. 1 hit on the U.S. Billboard R&B chart and earned Kemp a Grammy nomination.

4/14/201564Percy SledgesingerLiver CancerBaton Rouge, Louisiana

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Percy Sledge

November 25, 1940 - April 14, 2015

Percy Sledge, R&B singer, was best known for the song "When a Man Loves a Woman", a No. 1 in 1966.

4/3/201564Bob BurnsLynyrd Skynyrd, drummerCar CrashGeorgia

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Bob Burns

November 24, 1950 - April 3, 2015

Robert Louis "Bob" Burns, the founding drummer for Lynyrd Skynyrd, has died of injuries from a car crash near Cartersville, Georgia. Burns, 64, was the original drummer for the band from its 1964 roots in Jacksonville, Florida until 1974. He played on the band's first two albums Pronounced 'Leh-'nérd 'Skin-'nérd and Second Helping.

Burns died in a single car crash after his 1995 Buick Roadmaster left the road and hit a mailbox and tree on a sharp curve in Bartow County, Georgia. Police at the scene indicated that Burns was not wearing his seatbelt.

4/1/201575Cynthia Lennon1st wife of John LennonCancerMallorca, Spain

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Cynthia Lennon

September 10, 1939 - April 1, 2015

Cynthia Lennon, wife of Beatle John Lennon from 1962 until 1968, has died at age 75.

John and Cynthia met at an art school calligraphy class, where Cynthia studied to be an illustrator and John practiced painting, but seemed more interested in making music with a band that would become the Beatles. Together, the couple had 1 child, Julian Lennon, born April 8, 1963.

3/30/201534Jeremy BrownWildabouts, guitarist

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Jeremy Brown

Jeremy Brown, lead guitarist for Scott Weiland's band the Wildabouts, passed away a day before the band was set to release their debut album, Blaster.

3/26/201570John RenbournPentangle, folksingerHeart AttackHawick, Scotland

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John Renbourn

August 8, 1944 - March 26, 2015

John Renbourn was best known for his collaboration with guitarist Bert Jansch and his work with the folk group Pentangle (1967-1973). He also had a successful solo career as a guitarist and songwriter.

3/24/201528Gabriela Luján MaumusAsalto Al Parque Zoologico, bassistplane crashFrance

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Gabriela Luján Maumus

Argentine musician Gabriela Luján Maumus, bassist for the shoegaze band Asalto Al Parque Zoologico, was among the 150 who died in a Germanwings plane crash in the French Alps.

3/20/201555A. J. PeroTwisted Sister, drummerHeart Attack

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A. J. Pero

October 14, 1959 - March 20, 2015

Anthony Jude Pero was the drummer for heavy metal bands Twisted Sister and Adrenaline Mob.

Pero died March 20, 2015 after he was found unresponsive on the Adrenaline Mob's tour bus while the band was traveling from Baltimore to Poughkeepsie. Pero was taken to a hospital where he was declared dead from an apparent heart attack.

3/18/201565Michael BrownThe Left BankeHeart Failure

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Michael Brown

April 25, 1949 - March 18, 2015

Michael Brown (born Michael David Lookofsky) was best known as the principal songwriter for the 1960s pop group The Left Banke and for writing their two hits "Walk Away Renee" and "Pretty Ballerina".

Brown left the band after their first album and went on to record with the bands Montage, Stories and The Beckies. He died of heart failure at the age of 65.

3/16/201557Bruce CrumpMolly Hatchet, drummer

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Bruce Crump

July 17, 1957 - March 16, 2015

Bruce Crump was the original drummer with the rock band Molly Hatchet. He also played in the Canadian band Steelheart, Hatchet spin-off Gator Country, and the Jacksonville, Florida-based band White Rhino.

3/16/201562Andy FraserFree, bassist Temecula, California

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Andy Fraser

July 3, 1952 - March 16, 2015

Andy Fraser, founding member and bassist of the rock band Free, has died in California at the age of 62.

Free formed in 1968 when Andy was but 15 years old. With Paul Rodgers, he co-wrote Free's rock anthem "All Right Now."

Fraser was found dead in his car near his home in Temecula, California. Though no official cause of death has been announced, the bassist had been living with HIV since the '90s.

3/15/201559Mike PorcaroToto, bassistALSLos Angeles, California

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Mike Porcaro

May 29, 1955 - March 15, 2015

Mike Porcaro, longtime bassist for the rock band Toto, has died at age 59 following a battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS / Lou Gehrig's disease).

Porcaro became an official member of Toto following the departure of the band's original bass player David Hungate.

Mike's brother Steve is the keyboardist for Toto, and his late brother, Jeff Porcaro, was a former drummer for the band.

3/13/201577Daevid AllenSoft Machine / GongCancerAustralia

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Daevid Allen

January 13, 1938 - March 13, 2015

Daevid Allen, a founding member of the influential 1960s psychedelic rock groups Soft Machine and Gong, died on Friday the 13th following a battle with cancer. He was 77.

3/11/201567Jimmy GreenspoonThree Dog Night, keyboardistMelanomaNorth Potomac, Maryland

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Jimmy Greenspoon

February 7, 1948 - March 11, 2015

Jimmy Greenspoon, the keyboardist for rock band Three Dog Night, has died of cancer at age 67. Greenspoon also performed with artists like Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix and the Beach Boys.

Greenspoon joined Three Dog Night in 1968 and worked with them until he took a medical leave of absence to pursue treatment for metastatic melanoma.

He published his autobiography in 1991, titled One Is The Loneliest Number - On The Road And Behind The Scenes With Legendary Rock Band Three Dog Night.

3/5/201588Albert Mayslesdocumentary filmmaker New York, New York

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Albert Maysles

November 26, 1926 - March 5, 2015

Albert Maysles, filmmaker who collaborated with his late brother David in a documentary film career, died at age 88.

His films included the 1970 concert film "Gimme Shelter" which documented the tragic Rolling Stones show at Altamont Speedway.

2/27/201568Leonard Nimoyactor / singerCOPDLos Angeles, California

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Leonard Nimoy

March 26, 1931 - February 25, 2015

Leonard Nimoy, the actor best known for his role of Spock in the Star Trek TV/Movie series, but lesser known as a singer, has died at the age of 83.

Nimoy had an early aptitude for singing and acting, which he developed while a member of his synagogue's choir and in a children's neighborhood theater. He sang at his bar mitzvah at age 13 and was so good he was asked to repeat his performance the following week at another synagogue.

Early acting credits include playing the title role in the 1952 film Kid Monk Baroni, an army sergeant in the 1954 science fiction thriller Them! and a professor in the 1958 science fiction movie The Brain Eaters.

His TV roles before Star Trek included appearances in the Sea Hunt series from 1958 to 1960 and a minor role in the 1961 The Twilight Zone episode "A Quality of Mercy". Nimoy appeared in Bonanza (1960), The Rebel (1960), Two Faces West (1961), Rawhide (1961), The Untouchables (1962), The Eleventh Hour (1962), Perry Mason (1963; playing murderer Pete Chennery in "The Case of the Shoplifter's Shoe", episode 13 of season 6), Combat! (1963, 1965), Daniel Boone, The Outer Limits (1964), The Virginian (1963-1965; first working with Star Trek co-star DeForest Kelley in "Man of Violence", episode 14 of season 2, in 1963), and Get Smart (1966). He appeared again in the 1995 Outer Limits series. He appeared in Gunsmoke in 1962 as Arnie and in 1966 as John Walking Fox.

In addition to his acting and voice-over work, Nimoy released five albums of musical recordings on Dot Records. On his first album, Mr. Spock's Music from Outer Space, and half of his second album Two Sides of Leonard Nimoy, science fiction-themed songs are featured where Nimoy sings as Spock. On his final three albums, he sings popular and folk songs, such as "Proud Mary" and Johnny Cash's "I Walk the Line".

Nimoy's voice is sampled on the Information Society's 1988 hit single "What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy)". Nimoy (as Spock) can be heard saying "Pure Energy", a sound sample taken from the 1967 "Errand of Mercy" episode of the Star Trek TV series.

Nimoy died of complications from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) on February 27, 2015 at the age of 83, in his Bel Air home.

2/25/201568Chris RainbowAlan Parsons Project, singer

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Chris Rainbow

November 18, 1946 - February 25, 2015

Scottish singer Chris Rainbow contributed vocals to several albums by The Alan Parsons Project, starting on their 1979 album Eve through to their 1987 album Gaudi. He also sang on a side project by Eric Woolfson - the 1990 album Freudiana.

As a solo artist, Chris had hit songs, "Give Me What I Cry For" and "Solid State Brain" in the 1970s. He also recorded and toured with Camel.

Born Christopher James Harley he changed his name to Chris Rainbow as to avoid confusion with singer Steve Harley.

2/21/201594Clark Terryjazz trumpeterDiabetesPine Bluff, Arkansas

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Clark Terry

December 14, 1920 - February 21, 2015

Clark Virgil Terry Jr. was an American swing and bebop trumpeter, a pioneer of the flugelhorn in jazz, composer, educator, and NEA Jazz Masters inductee.

He played with Charlie Barnet (1947), Count Basie (1948-51), Duke Ellington (1951-59), Quincy Jones (1960), and Oscar Peterson (1964-96). He was also with The Tonight Show Band from 1962 to 1972.

2/16/201568Lesley Goresinger/songwriterLung CancerNew York, New York

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Lesley Gore

May 2, 1946 - February 16, 2015

Singer Lesley Gore found fame in 1963 with her #1 hit song "It's My Party." She was only 16 when she recorded the song. Follow up hits included "Judy's Turn to Cry," and the feminist anthem "You Don't Own Me."

Gore composed songs for the soundtrack of the 1980 film Fame, for which she received an Academy Award nomination for the song "Out Here on My Own", written with her brother Michael Gore.

Gore also worked as an actress. Gore performed on two episodes of the classic Batman television series (January 19 and 25, 1967), in which she guest-starred as Pussycat, one of Catwoman's minions.

Beginning in 2004, Gore hosted the PBS television series In the Life, which focused on LGBT issues.

According to her partner of 33 years, Lois Sasson, Gore died on February 16, 2015, at the NYU Langone Medical Center in Manhattan, New York City, of lung cancer.

2/12/201573Sam AndrewBig Brother and the Holding CompanyHeart FailureSan Rafael, California

Rest in Peace
Sam Andrew

December 18, 1941 - February 12, 2015

Sam Andrew was a founding member and guitarist of Big Brother and the Holding Company, the San Francisco area band who rose to great fame after Chet Helms recruited singer Janis Joplin joined them.

Sam Andrew died on February 12, 2015, following complications from open-heart surgery due to a heart attack suffered ten weeks earlier. His death follows those of Janis Joplin, who tragically died from a heroin overdose during her prime in 1970, and James Gurley, the other guitarist for Big Brother, who died of a heart attack in 2009.

2/7/201574Joe B. MauldinBuddy Holly and the CricketsCancerNashville, Tennessee

Rest in Peace
Joe B. Mauldin

July 8, 1940 - February 7, 2015

Joe B. Mauldin, bassist for Buddy Holly and the Crickets, died of cancer at 74 years of age.

After Buddy Holly's death in 1959, the Crickets continued as a band, joining up with vocalist Earl Sinks and lead guitarist Sonny Curtis. In 1960, they released "In Style with the Crickets." That album included the first recording of "I Fought the Law," which later became a smash hit for the Bobby Fuller Four. The Crickets remained active for the next 5 decades, releasing albums that included guests such as vocalist Bobby Vee.

Maudlin and the members of the Crickets were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012.

1/29/201569Danny McCullochAnimalsHeart Failure

Rest in Peace
Danny McCulloch

July 18, 1945 - January 29, 2015

Danny McCulloch, who played bass for the Animals during their late '60s psychedelic period, has died of heart failure.

1/20/201570Edgar FroeseTangerine DreamPulmonary embolismVienna, Austria

Rest in Peace
Edgar Froese

June 6, 1944 - January 20, 2015

Edgar Froese, founding member of Tangerine Dream, has died. He was 70.

Tangerine Dream were also known for being incredibly prolific, having released more than 100 albums in their history, scoring movies like 'Risky Business' and 'Three O'Clock High' and the video game 'Grand Theft Auto V.' In addition to recording with Tangerine Dream, Froese released many albums under his own name beginning with 1974's 'Aqua.'

1/17/201566Dallas Taylordrummer Los Angeles, California

Rest in Peace
Dallas Taylor

April 7, 1948 - January 17, 2015

Dallas Taylor was a session drummer on Crosby, Stills and Nash's 1969 debut album, Crosby, Stills & Nash and on their 1970 follow-up with Neil Young, Déjŕ Vu. He also played with the band at Woodstock. His work appears on Stephen Stills' 1970 solo album and with Stills' group Manassas in 1972 and 1973. He also played with Van Morrison at the 1974 Montreux Jazz Festival.

In 1970, Dallas sat in with The Doors accompanying John Densmore on drums. Jim Morrison acknowledges him on The Doors Live at Felt Forum Second Show CD.

In the mid-1970s he toured with Paul Butterfield, but later left the music business to become an alcohol and drug interventionist and consultant.

Taylor died January 17, 2015 of complications from viral pneumonia and kidney disease, aged 66.

1/15/201575Kim Fowleymusic producer and managerBladder CancerLos Angeles, California

Rest in Peace
Kim Fowley

July 21, 1939 - January 15, 2015

Kim Fowley, the "Bad Boy of Rock 'n' Roll" best known for discovering the 1970s all-girl punk rock band the Runaways, has died. He was 75. The Runaways, which featured Joan Jett, released four albums in the late 1970s before breaking up. One of their hit songs was "Cherry Bomb."

As a music producer and manager, Fowley, known for his eccentric charisma and dress, was often promoting his latest project.

1/8/201572Andrae Crouchgospel singerHeart FailureLos Angeles, California

Rest in Peace
Andrae Crouch

July 1, 1942 - January 8, 2015

Gospel music legend Andrae Crouch has died after suffering a fatal heart attack. He was 72.

Crouch worked with Michael Jackson and Madonna and in movies such as "The Lion King" and "The Color Purple."

Crouch wrote dozens of gospel songs, including favorites such as "The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power," "My Tribute (To God Be the Glory)" and "Soon and Very Soon," which was sung at a public memorial for Michael Jackson. His influence also was felt in pop music. Elvis Presley and Paul Simon performed his songs. He helped arrange the Jackson song "Man in the Mirror," and his arrangement for the film "The Color Purple" earned an Oscar nomination.

He won seven Grammy Awards, was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 1998, and, in 2004, received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

1/5/201571King SportyJamaican singer Miami, Florida

Rest in Peace
King Sporty

September 19, 1943 - January 5, 2015

Noel George Williams, better known as King Sporty, a Jamaican reggae musician and record producer best known for co-writing the song "Buffalo Soldier" made famous by Bob Marley, has died. He was 71.

Sporty was married to the American soul and rhythm and blues singer, Betty Wright.

In 2013 Sporty's song "Self Destruct" was sampled by Justin Timberlake for his song "That Girl" on his 20/20 Experience album.

1/2/201594Little Jimmy Dickenscountry singerHeart FailureNashville, Tennessee

Rest in Peace
Little Jimmy Dickens

December 19, 1920 - January 2, 2015

Country music star Little Jimmy Dickens, a fixture at the Grand Ole Opry for decades, died of cardiac arrest after having a stroke on Christmas day 2014. He was 94.

In the 1940s, Roy Acuff discovered Dickens playing at a Cincinnati radio show and Acuff invited Dickens to sing a song in his show. This led to appearances at the Grand Ole Opry, where Dickens' keen sense of humor, colorful rhinestone jackets and diminutive stature led to fame.

In 1949, he became the first person on the Opry to wear a suit designed by Los Angeles-based tailor, Nudie Cohn. In the early 1950s, Cohn adorned some Dickens suits with rhinestones, and Dickens became the first Opry star to glitter.

Dickens had several novelty hits, including: "May The Bird Of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose," "Out Behind the Barn," "Take An Old Cold Tater (And Wait)" and "I'm Little, But I'm Loud."

The Hank Williams song "Hey Good Lookin'" was written specifically for Dickens while the two were together on a Grand Ole Opry tour bus. A week later Williams cut the song himself, jokingly telling Dickens, "That song's too good for you!"

The 4-foot-11-inch artist was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1983. He is survived by his wife, Mona Dickens, and two daughters.

1/1/201559Jeff GolubBilly Squier / Rod Stewart, guitarist

Rest in Peace
Jeff Golub

April 15, 1955 - January 1, 2015

Jeff Golub, a jazz, blues and rock guitarist, has died at the age of 59 following a lengthy illness.

In 1980, Golub joined the band of rock singer Billy Squier, with whom he toured and recorded extensively. He toured with Rod Stewart from 1988 until 1995 and also worked extensively as a sideman for names including Ashford and Simpson, Alphonse Mouzon, Kirk Whalum, Mindi Abair, Everette Harp, Peter Wolf, John Waite, Vanessa Williams, Gato Barbieri, Bill Evans, Rick Braun, Tina Turner, Dar Williams, Brian Culbertson, Gerald Albright, Henry Butler, Jon Cleary, Marc Cohn, Richard Elliot, Robben Ford, Sonny Landreth, Jeff Lorber and Peter White.

Golub lost his eyesight in June 2011 due to the collapse of an optic nerve. In 2012, he fell onto New York City subway tracks and was dragged by a train, but was rescued by onlookers and escaped unscathed. He was later diagnosed with a rare and incurable brain disorder called Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP).

Golub released his first solo recording, Unspoken Words, for Gaia Records in 1988. Golub's final album, made with keyboardist Brian Auger, was Train Kept A Rolling, a title inspired by Golub's subway incident.


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