This Week’s Birthdays (October 2 – 8)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Oct 02
1939 ● Lolly Vasquez → With brother Patrick, co-founder, guitar and vocals for Native American rockers Redbone, “Come And Get Your Love” (#5, 1974), died 3/4/2010
1941 ● Ron Meagher → Co-founder and bassist in pop-rock The Beau Brummels, “Laugh, Laugh” (#15, 1964)
1945 ● Don McLean → Folk-rock singer/songwriter best known for his 8 minute epic, “American Pie” (#1, 1971), the song inspired by and a tribute to the death of Buddy Holly
1946 ● Ron Griffiths → Bassist, vocals and songwriter for power pop quartet The Iveys, “Maybe Tomorrow” (#67, 1968), left before the band changed its name and became Badfinger
1949 ● Richard Hell (Meyers) → Bassist, singer and songwriter, one of the original New York punk rockers, co-founded punk-rock Television, then fronted The Voidoids, “Blank Generation” (1977), now an author
1950 ● Mike Rutherford → Bass, backing vocals and one of two constant members of prog-rock turned pop-rock Genesis, “Invisible Touch” (#1, 1986), fronts side project Mike + The Mechanics, “All I Need Is A Miracle” (#5, 1986)
1951 ● Sting (Gordon Matthew Sumner) → Lead vocals, bass guitar and songwriter for post-punk The Police, “Every Breath You Take” (#1, 1983), then highly successful solo career, “Fortress Around Your Heart” (#1, 1985) and five other Top 20 hits and 11 Grammy Awards
1952 ● John Otway → Novelty folk-rock cult singer/songwriter, “Really Free” (UK #27, 1977) with Wild Willy Barrett and “Bunsen Burner” (UK #9, 2002)
1955 ● Philip Oakey → Vocals for late-70s synth-pop pioneers The Human League, “Don’t You Want Me” (#1, 1981)
1956 ● Freddie Jackson → R&B/urban soul balladeer, “You Are My Lady” (#12, R&B #1, 1985) and nine other R&B #1 hits
1958 ● Robbie Nevil → Songwriter, guitarist and pop-rock solo singer, “C’est La Vie” (#2, 1987), producer and writer for Babyface, Jessica Simpson, Destiny’s Child, Smash Mouth and others
1960 ● Al Connelly → Guitarist for Canadian pop-rock Glass Tiger, “Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone)” (#2, 1986)
1962 ● Claude V. McKnight, III → Vocals in a capella gospel Take 6, “I L-O-V-E U” (R&B #19, 1990)
1962 ● Sigtryggur “Siggi” Baldursson → Drummer in Icelandic alt pop-rock The Sugarcubes, “Hit” (Modern Rock #1, 1991)
1965 ● Floyd I. “Bud” Gaugh IV → Drums and percussion for California ska-punk revivalist trio Sublime, “What I Got” (#29, 1997)
1969 ● Badly Drawn Boy (Damon Gough) → Alternative rock singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, “You Were Right” (UK #9, 2002)
1970 ● Dion Allen → Backing vocals in hip hop/urban rap quintet Az Yet, “Last Night” (#9, R&B #1, 1996)
1971 ● Tiffany Renee Darwish → Late 80s teen queen and bubblegum pop singer, “Could’ve Been” (#1, 1987) and “I Think We’re Alone Now” (#1, 1987)
1973 ● Lene Grawford Nystrøm Rasted → Vocals for Danish dance-pop Aqua, “Barbie Girl” (#7, 1997), which drew a lawsuit from Mattel for its sexual content

Oct 03
1938 ● Eddie Cochran → Rockabilly pioneer singer, songwriter and influential power chord guitarist, “Summertime Blues” (#8, 1958), died in a car crash while on tour in England on 4/17/1960
1941 ● Chubby Checker (Ernest Evans) → Grammy-winning R&B/pop singer and early 60s dance-craze instigator, “The Twist” (#1, 1960 and 1962), the only song to hit #1 in the US singles charts twice, plus 17 other Top 40 hits
1945 ● Antonio Martinez → Guitarist for Spanish rock ‘n roll band Los Bravos, “Black Is Black” (US #4, 1966), the first US Top 10 hit by a Spanish band
1949 ● Lindsey Buckingham → Guitar, vocals and songwriter for pop duo Buckingham Nicks, joined pop-rock Fleetwood Mac in 1974, wrote “Go Your Own Way” (#10, 1977), then solo, “Trouble” (#9, 1981), producer
1950 ● Ronnie Laws → Jazz, blues and funk saxophonist and singer, first with R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975), then solo, “Every Generation” (R&B #12, 1980), sessions for Ramsey Lewis, Hugh Masekela, Sister Sledge and others
1954 ● Stevie Ray Vaughan → Grammy-winning Texas blues-rock guitar master, “Crossfire” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1983), died in a helicopter crash on 8/27/1990 following a show in Wisconsin
1961 ● Robbie Jaymes → Keyboards for Brit dance-pop band Modern Romance, “Can You Move” (Dance/Club #2, 1981) and “Best Years Of Our Lives” (UK #4, 1982)
1962 ● Tommy Lee (Bass) → Drummer in hair-metal Mötley Crüe, “Dr. Feelgood” (#6, 1989), founded rap-metal band Methods of Mayhem, “Get Naked” (2000) and other solo work, former spouse of actresses Heather Locklear and Pamela Anderson
1965 ● Neil Sims → Drummer for Brit indie rock/shoegazing band Catherine Wheel, “Black Metallic” (Modern Rock #9, 1991)
1966 ● Dan Miller → Guitarist for at pop-rock They Might Be Giants, “Birdhouse In Your Soul” (#3, Modern Rock, 1990)
1967 ● Chris Collingwood → Singer, songwriter, rhythm guitarist and founding member of power pop band Fountains Of Wayne, “Stacy’s Mom” (#21, 2003)
1969 ● Gwen Stefani → Lead vocals for rock/ska No Doubt, “Underneath It All” (#3, 2002), then solo, “Hollaback Girl” (#1, 2005) from the 2004 worldwide Top 10 album Love, Angel, Music, Baby, fashion designer
1971 ● Kevin Richardson → Vocals in pop-dance-hip hop Backstreet Boys, “Quit Playing Games With My Heart” (#2, 1997)
1975 ● India.Aire Simpson → Grammy-winning neo-classic R&B/soul singer and songwriter, “Little Things” (Song of the Year, 2000)
1978 ● Jake Shears (Jason Sellards) → Vocals dance-glam-rock Scissor Sisters, “Filthy Gorgeous” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)
1979 ● Nate Wood → Drums, percussion and backing vocals for post-grunge alt rock The Calling, “Wherever You Will Go” (#5, 2001)
1983 ● Danny O’Donoghue → Irish singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in teen-pop boy band Mytown, “Body Bumpin'” (Canada #12, 2000) then Celtic folk-pop-rock The Script, “Breakeven” (#12, 2010)
1984 ● Ashlee Simpson → Reality TV series actress and teen-dance-pop singer, “Pieces Of Me” (#5, 2004), fodder for tabloid magazines

Oct 04
1929 ● Leroy Van Dyke → Country-pop singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Walk On By” (#5, Country #1, 1961), named by Billboard magazine as the most popular country song of all time
1944 ● Marlena Davis → Vocals in mixed gender R&B doo-wop quartet The Orlons, “The Wah-Watusi” (#2, R&B #5, 1962)
1947 ● Jim Fielder → Bassist for jazz-rock/pop-rock fusion band Blood, Sweat & Tears, “Spinning Wheel” (#2, 1969), sessions
1952 ● Jody Stevens → Drummer and last surviving original member of power pop cult band Big Star, “September Gurls” (1974, Rolling Stone #178), currently a studio engineer
1957 ● Barbara K. MacDonald (Kooyman) → With husband Pat MacDonald, one half of one hit wonder alt country-folk-pop duo Timbuk 3, “The Future’s So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades” (#19, 1986), solo
1959 ● Chris Lowe → Keyboards for synth-pop dance Pet Shop Boys, “West End Girls” (#1, 1986)
1962 ● Juan “Jon” Secada → Cuban-American R&B and pop singer and songwriter, “Just Another Day” (#5, 1992), two albums have won Grammy Awards for Best Latin Pop Performance
1965 ● Leo Barnes → Saxophone for Irish rockers Hothouse Flowers, “Don’t Go” (Modern Rock #7, 1988)
1984 ● Lena Katina (Elena Sergeevna Katina) → Singer in Russian teen pop duo t.A.T.u., “All The Things She Said” (#20, UK #1, 2003), solo

Oct 05
1924 ● Bill Dana (William Szathmary) → TV actor, comedian and screenwriter, created the character José Jiménez and the comedy single “The Astronaut” (Top 20, 1961)
1936 ● George “Wydell” Jones Jr. → Lead vocals and songwriter for doo-wop The Edsels, “Rama Lama Ding Dong” (#21, 1961), died from cancer on 9/27/2008
1938 ● Carlo Mastrangelo → Bass and later lead vocals for R&B doo wop Dion & The Belmonts, “A Teenager In Love” (#5, 1959), continued after frontman Dion DiMucci left in 1960 as The Belmonts, “Tell Me Why” (#18, 1961), still performing in the 10s
1939 ● Abi Ofarim (Abraham Reichstadt) → Israeli guitarist, vocalist and dancer, one half the folk-pop-rock husband/wife duo Esther & Abi, “Cinderella Rockafeller” (UK #1, 1968)
1941 ● Arlene Smith → Vocals for early R&B/pop girl group trio The Chantels, “Maybe” (#15, R&B #2, 1958), one of the definitive songs of the genre
1941 ● Wally Lester → Vocals in R&B doo wop The Skyliners, “Since I Don’t Have You” (#12, 1959)
1942 ● Richard Street → Lead vocals from 1971 to 1993 for Motown R&B/soul legends The Temptations, “Papa Was a Rolling Stone” (#1, 1972), now writing autobiography
1943 ● Steve Miller → Guitarist, singer, songwriter and frontman for blues-rock then pop-rock Steve Miller Band, “The Joker” (#1, 1973), now teaches college music courses
1947 ● Brian Johnson → Lead vocals for Brit glam-rock Geordie, “All Because Of You” (UK #6, 1972), joined AC/DC replacing deceased lead singer Bon Scott in 1980, “Back In Black” (#37, 1981)
1948 ● Lucius “Tawl” Ross → Rhythm guitar for R&B/funk giants Funkadelic, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#28, 1978)
1948 ● Russell Craig Mael → With brother Ron, vocals and frontman for quirky pop-rock Sparks, “This Town Ain’t Big Enough For The Both Of Us” (UK #2, 1974) and “Just Got Back From Heaven” (Dance/Club #7, 1989)
1949 ● Brian Connolly → Vocals for glam pop-rock Sweet, “Ballroom Blitz” (#5, 1973), died of kidney and liver failure after years of alcoholism on 2/9/1997
1949 ● Louis Charles “B. W.” Stevenson III → One hit wonder country-pop singer, “My Maria” (#9, 1973), died following heart surgery on 4/28/1988
1950 ● “Fast” Eddie Clarke → Guitar and vocals in speed-metal Motörhead, “Ace Of Spades” (UK #15, 1980), left the band in 1982 to co-found heavy metal Fastway
1951 ● Bob Geldof → Frontman, guitar, singer and songwriter for Irish New Wave punk-pop Boomtown Rats, “I Don’t Like Mondays” (#73, UK #1, 1980) plus 8 other UK Top 20 hits, Live Aid founder/promoter, author, and political activist
1952 ● Harold Faltermeyer (Harald Faltermeier) → Grammy-winning German synth-pop keyboardist, producer and composer, co-wrote the themes from the movies Beverly Hills Cop “Axel F” (#3, 1985) and Top Gun, session work with Donna Summer, Barbra Streisand, Billy Idol, Cheap Trick and others
1957 ● Lee Thompson → Sax and vocals for punk/ska revival Madness, “Our House” (#7, 1982) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles
1960 ● Paul Heard → Keyboards and programming for Brit dance-pop/house music M People, “Moving On Up” (#34, Dance #1, 1993)
1964 ● Dave Dederer → Co-founder, bass and vocals for post-grunge alt rock The Presidents Of The United States Of America, “Lump” (Mainstream Rock #7, 1995), later with web/mobile media company Melodeo
1974 ● Heather Headley → Trinidadian R&B/soul, calypso, reggae and soca singer, “In My Mind” (Dance/Club #1, 2006), Broadway stage actress, The Lion King (1997) and Aida (1998)
1977 ● Kele Le Roc (Kelly Biggs) → Brit pop, garage and R&B/soul singer, “Little Bit Of Lovin'” (UK #8, 1998), backing vocals for Shy FX and Curtis Lynch, Jr.
1978 ● James Valentine → Guitarist for alt funk-rock Maroon 5, “She Will Be Loved” (#5, 2004)
1980 ● Paul Anthony Thomas → Bass guitar for post-grunge punk-pop Good Charlotte, “The Anthem” (Alt Rock #10, 2003)
1985 ● Nicola Roberts → Singer in pre-fab all-girl Euro-pop vocal group Girls Aloud, “Sound Of The Underground” (UK #1, 2002)

Oct 06
1917 ● Bob Neal → Memphis country and pop radio DJ, music talent agent, Elvis Presley‘s second manager, resigned in favor of Colonel Tom Parker in early 1955
1942 ● Neil Korner → Bassist for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964)
1945 ● Robin Shaw (Scrimshaw) → Session vocals in pre-fab British Invasion pop-rock Flower Pot Men, “Let’s Go To San Francisco” (Top 10, 1967), then moved over to pre-fab pop White Plains, “My Baby Loves Lovin'” (#13, 1970) and later pop-rock The First Class, “Beach Baby” (#4, UK #13, 1974)
1946 ● Millie Small → Jamaican one hit wonder “bluebeat” reggae/ska singer, “My Boy Lollipop” (#2, 1964), the first international ska hit
1949 ● Roberto Alfonso “Bobby” Farrell → West Indian vocalist in R&B/disco Euro-dance Boney M, “Rivers Of Babylon” (#30, UK #1, 1978)
1949 ● Thomas McClary → Guitarist for Motown R&B/soul-funk The Commodores, “Three Times A Lady” (#1, 1978), left for a solo career in gospel music
1951 ● Gavin Sutherland → Bass guitar and vocals for folk-rock sibling duo The Sutherland Brothers, “(I Don’t Want To Love You But) You Got Me Anyway” (#48, 1973), then joined with an obscure rock band to form The Sutherland Brothers & Quiver, “The Arms Of Mary” (#81, UK #5, 1975)
1951 ● Kevin Cronin → Lead vocals, rhythm guitar and songwriter for arena rock REO Speedwagon, wrote “Keep On Lovin’ You” (#1, 1980) and “Can’t Fight This Feeling” (#1, 1985)
1954 ● David Hidalgo → Singer, songwriter and guitarist for Tex-Mex roots rock Los Lobos, “La Bamba” (#1, 1987), solo, side projects and session work, also member of supergroup Los Super Seven and the Latin Playboys
1958 ● Tim Mooney → Drummer for critically acclaimed but light selling alt pop-rock American Music Club (1991 album Everclear)
1960 ● Richard Jobson → Lead singer in New Wave art-punk-rock The Skids, “Into The Valley” (UK #10, 1979), later producer, TV host, film director and screenwriter
1961 ● Tim Burgess → Drummer for new wave pop-rock T’Pau, “Heart And Soul” (#4, 1987)
1964 ● Matthew Sweet → Power pop guitarist and songwriter, “Girlfriend” (Mainstream Rock #10, 1992), collaborated with The Bangles‘ singer Susanna Hoffs on two albums, Under The Covers, Vol.1 (2006) and Vol. 2 (2009), featuring covers of 60s and 70s pop-rock hits
1966 ● Tommy Stinson → Lead guitar for garage punk then alt rock pioneers The Replacements, “I’ll Be You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1989), solo, sessions, played with Guns N’ Roses
1982 ● William Pierce Butler → Multi-instrumentalist for alt/indie rock Arcade Fire, “Keep The Car Running” (Alt #32, 2007)

Oct 07
1927 ● Al Martino (Jasper Cini) → Italian-American pop crooner, “I Love You Because” (#3, 1963) and ten other Top 40 hits, film actor, played Johnny Fontane in The Godfather series, died on 10/13/2009
1939 ● Colin Cooper → Founding member, saxophone, guitar and vocals for Brit blues-rock Climax Blues Band, “Couldn’t Get It Right” (#3, 1977), died on 7/3/2008
1941 ● Tony “Panama” Silvester → Founding member vocalist for R&B/soul The Main Ingredient, “Everybody Plays The Fool” (#3, 1972) and 11 R&B Top 40 singles, died on 11/27/2006 from multiple myeloma
1941 ● Martin Murray → Rhythm guitar for one hit wonder English beat/pop-rock The Honeycombs, “Have I The Right?” (#5, 1964)
1945 ● Bob Webber → Co-founder, keyboards and vocals for one hit wonder pop-rock Sugarloaf, “Green-Eyed Lady” (#3, 1970)
1945 ● Kevin Godley → Guitar, vocals and songwriter for soft pop-rock 10cc, “I’m Not In Love” (#2, 1975), co-founded pop duo Godley & Crème, “Cry” (#16, 1985), later a film and music video director
1949 ● David Hope → Founding member and bassist for prog/heartland rock Kansas, “Dust In The Wind” (#6, 1978), converted to Christianity and formed religious-tinged hard rock AD with other Kansas bandmates, now an Anglican priest and author
1951 ● John (Cougar) Mellencamp → Grammy-winning roots rock singer/songwriter, “Jack And Diane” (#1, 1982) and 23 other Top 40 and 16 Mainstream Rock Top 40 hits
1953 ● Hector Samuel “Tico” Torres → Drummer and percussionist in Bon Jovi, “Living On A Prayer” (#1, 1987)
1959 ● David Taylor → Original bass guitarist for studio-only pop-rock one hit wonder Edison Lighthouse, “(Love Grows) Where My Rosemary Goes” (#5, 1970)
1959 ● Simon Cowell → Record A&R executive, TV producer, music entrepreneur and notoriously critical judge on TV shows Popstars, Pop Idol, American Idol and, starting in 2011, the US version of The X Factor
1964 ● Samantha “Sam” Brown → Brit singer, keyboardist and songwriter, “Stop!” (UK #4, 1989), also backing vocals in sessions and tours with Steve Marriott, The Small Faces, Jools Holland Band, Spandau Ballet and Pink Floyd
1967 ● Toni Braxton → Grammy-winning R&B/soul-pop singer, “Un Break My Heart” (#1, 1996), Broadway stage and film actress, Las Vegas showroom headliner
1968 ● Thomas Edward “Thom” Yorke → Lead vocalist, guitarist and principal songwriter for alt/indie rock Radiohead, “There There” (Modern Rock #14, 2003), solo, “Black Swan” (Mainstream Rock #40, 2006)
1969 ● Leeroy Thornhill → MC and vocals for “big beat” electronic dance/rap The Prodigy, “Firestarter” (#30, 1996)
1976 ● Taylor Hicks → Blue-eyed soul singer and songwriter, 2006 American Idol winner, “Do I Make You Proud” (#1, 2006)
1978 ● Alesha Dixon → Brit singer, dancer and songwriter in “UK urban” R&B/dance-pop trio Mis-Teeq, “One Night Stand” (Dance/Club #4, 2004), solo, “The Boy Does Nothing” (UK #5, 2008), model

Oct 08
1934 ● Doc Green → Baritone vocals for the second lineup of R&B/soul doo wop The Drifters, “Save The Last Dance For Me” (#1, 1960), left in 1962
1940 ● Fred Cash → Vocals for Chicago soul/doo wop The Impressions, “It’s All Right” (#4, 1963)
1941 ● Dave Arbus → Founding member, violin, flute, saxophone and trumpet in Brit prog-rock/jazz fusion East Of Eden, “Jig A Jig” (UK #7, 1971), later with Fiddler’s Dram, violin solo on The Who‘s “Baba O’Reilly” (1970)
1941 ● George Bellamy → Rhythm guitar for Brit instrumental rock ‘n’ roll The Tornados, “Telstar” (#1, 1962), the first major US hit by a British group, solo, father of Muse frontman Matthew Bellamy
1942 ● Reese Francis “Buzz” Clifford → Rock ‘n roll one hit wonder singer, “Babysittin’ Boogie” (#6, 1961), wrote songs recorded by Petula Clark, Lou Rawls, Leon Russell, Kris Kristofferson and others
1945 ● Butch Rillera → Drummer for Native American rockers Redbone, “Come And Get Your Love” (#5, 1974)
1945 ● Ray Royer → Guitarist for prog/psych rock Procol Harum, “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” (#5, 1967)
1947 ● Tony Wilson → Bassist in Brit interracial R&B/soul-disco Hot Chocolate, “You Sexy Thing” (#3, 1976) and 27 other UK Top 40 hits, including one in every year from 1970 to 1984
1948 ● Johnny Ramone (John Cummings) → Lead guitar and frontman in seminal punk rock band The Ramones, “Rockaway Beach” (#66, 1978), died of prostate cancer on 9/15/2004
1949 ● Hamish Stuart → Bass and backing vocals for Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974), session work for Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan and others, member of Paul McCartney‘s backing band in the 90s
1949 ● Harry Bowens → Vocals for eclectic R&B and rock fusion Was (Not Was), “Walk The Dinosaur” (#7, 1989)
1949 ● Michael Rosen → Trumpeter for Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974), sessions
1950 ● Robert “Kool” Bell → Founder, frontman, lead vocals, bass and songwriter for jazz-fusion then R&B/funk Kool & The Gang, “Celebration” (#1, 1980)
1952 ● Cliff Adams → Trombonist for jazz-fusion then R&B/funk Kool & The Gang, “Celebration” (#1, 1980)
1959 ● James Johnstone (aka MC Large Drink) → Saxophone and guitar for post-punk jazz-funk-rock Pigbag, “Papa’s Got A Brand New Pigbag” (Dance/Club #56, UK #3, 1982)
1963 ● Steve Perry → Co-founder and lead vocals for jazz-rock-ska-swing revival octet Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, “Zoot Suit Riot” (Modern Rock #15, 1998)
1964 ● Priscilla “CeCe” Winans → Grammy-winning R&B/soul and gospel crossover singer in duets with brother BeBe (Benjamin), “Close To You” (R&B/Hip Hop #21, 2009) or solo, “Let Everything That Has Breath” (Dance/Club #8, 2006)
1965 ● C.J. Ramone (Christopher John Ward) → Last bassist for seminal punk rock band The Ramones, “Rockaway Beach” (#66, 1978), replaced original member Dee Dee Ramone in 1986
1967 ● Teddy Riley → Singer, producer, New Jack Swing pioneer, founder and frontman for R&B vocal group Blackstreet, “No Diggity” (#1, 1996), Grammy-winning song featuring Dr Dre, solo, produced for Michael Jackson, Bobby Brown and others

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