Posts Tagged celebrity birthdays

This Week’s Birthdays (August 18 – 24)

Happy Birthday this week to:

August 18
1918 ● Cisco Houston / (Gilbert Vandine Houston) → Traditional folk singer and guitarist, Woody Guthrie‘s traveling companion and harmony vocalist, died of cancer on 4/29/1961 shortly after career-boosting TV performances and appearance at the 1960 Newport Folk Festival, age 42
1925 ● Sonny Til / (Earlington Carl Tilghman) → Lead singer and frontman for doo wop and “bird group” trendsetting R&B vocal group The Orioles (“Crying In The Chapel,” #11, R&B #1, 1953), died of heart failure complicated by diabetes on 12/9/1981, age 56
1939 ● Maxine Brown → Underrated R&B/soul vocalist, “All In My Mind” (#19, 1960) and several other charting singles in the 60s
1939 ● Johnny Preston / (John Preston Courville) → Two hit wonder pop-rock singer discovered by J. P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, “Running Bear” (#1, 1960) and “Cradle Of Love” (#7, 1960), died of heart failure on 3/4/2011, age 71
1944 ● Carl Wayne / (Colin David Tooley) → Founding member and lead singer for Brit psych-rock The Move, “Blackberry Way” (UK #1, 1968), left for a pop music, cabaret and TV theme song career, joined The Hollies in 2003, died of cancer on 8/31/2004, age 60
1945 ● Barbara Ann Harris → Singer for pop girl trio The Toys, “A Lover’s Concerto” (#2, 1965)
1945 ● Sara Dash → Founding member of 60s doo wop girl group The Bluebelles, which morphed into disco-funk Labelle, “Lady Marmalade” (#1, 1975), released four solo albums and the disco hit, “Sinner Man” (#71, Dance/Club #9, 1978), session singer for Laura Nyro, The Marshall Tucker Band, The Rolling Stones and others, toured with Keith Richards
1945 ● Vince Melouney → Australian musician, original guitarist for pop-rock The Bee Gees (“I Started A Joke,” #6, 1968) and one of three official bandmembers who were not Gibb family members, left the band in 1968 to pursue other interests
1949 ● Nigel Griggs → Bassist for Aussie New Wave pop-rock Split Enz, “I Got You” (#53, UK #12, 1980)
1950 ● Dennis Elliott → Original drummer for Foreigner, “Double Vision” (#2, 1978), left in 1992 to pursue a career in wood sculpting
1951 ● John Rees → Bass and backing vocals for Scottish-Australian Men At Work, “Down Under” (#1, UK #1, 1983), their Grammy-winning debut album, Business As Usual, was simultaneously the #1 US and UK album in January 1983, gaining them the distinction of being the only Aussie band to hold all four top spots at once
1952 ● Patrick Swayze → TV and film actor, Dirty Dancing (1987) and Ghost (1990), one hit wonder pop singer, “She’s Like The Wind” (#3, 1987), died from pancreatic cancer on 9/14/2009, age 57
1953 ● Marvin Isley → Bass guitar for six-decade, multi-generation R&B/soul family group The Isley Brothers, “That Lady, Pts. 1-2” (#6, 1973), died from complications of diabetes on 6/6/2010, age 56
1956 ● Tony Garnier → Bass guitarist with Asleep At The Wheel and other bands, since 1989 toured and recorded in Bob Dylan‘s backing band as Dylan‘s longest-serving sideman, also recorded with Tom Waits, Paul Simon and Michelle Branch
1957 ● Ron Strykert → Co-founder, vocals and guitar for Scottish-Australian Men At Work, “Down Under” (#1, UK #1, 1983), their Grammy-winning debut album, Business As Usual, was simultaneously the #1 US and UK album in January 1983, gaining them the distinction of being the only Aussie band to hold all four top spots at once
1967 ● Blas Elias → Drummer in pop-glam metal Slaughter, “Fly To The Angels” (#19, 1990) and the Las Vegas production of Blue Man Group
1967 ● Dan Peters → Founding member and drummer for grunge rock Mudhoney, “Suck You Dry” (Modern Rock #23, 1992)
1967 ● Tracy Tracy / (Tracy Catell) → Peroxide-blonde lead vocals for indie pop-rockers The Primitives, “Crash” (Modern Rock #3, 1988)
1969 ● Everlast / (Erik Francis Schrody) → Irish-American rapper and singer-songwriter, founding member of one hit wonder hip hop trio House Of Pain, “Jump Around” (#3, Rap #5, 1992), left for blues-rock/hip hop solo career, “What It’s Like” (#13, Mainstream Rock #1, 1998), then hip hop supergroup La Coka Nostra
1971 ● Richard D. James → Influential acid/ambient electronic music composer and performer under the pseudonym Aphex Twin, “Windowlicker” (Dance #15, 1999)
1976 ● Dirk Lance / (George Alex Katunich) → Original bassist for alt-metal Incubus, “Drive” (#9, 2001), left in 2003 to pursue video game development, joined jam/funk Willie’s Nerve Clinic in 2006
1983 ● Mika / (Michael Penniman) → Lebanese-American pop singer and musician popular everywhere but North America, “Grace Kelly” (UK #1, 2007) and six other UK Top 20 singles

August 19
1935 ● Earl Gaines → Hard-luck soul-blues and electric blues singer, his top charting song, “It’s Love Baby (24 Hours A Day)” (R&B #2, 1955) was credited to the backing band Louis Brooks & The Hi-Toppers, two decades worth of follow-ups were less than successful, left the industry in the late 70s to work as a truck driver, returned in the 90s and recorded several further albums, died from cancer on 12/31/2009, age 74
1939 ● Ginger Baker / (Peter Edward Baker) → Drummer for blues-rock super-trio Cream, “Sunshine Of Your Love” (#5, 1968), super-trio Blind Faith (US #1 album Blind Faith, 1969), founded jazz-blues-rock fusion Ginger Baker’s Air Force, producer and solo
1940 ● Don Fardon / (Donald Arthur Maughn) → Lead singer for 60s Brit mod scene freakbeat The Sorrows (“Take A Heart,” UK #21, 1965), then one hit wonder pop singer with his cover of “(The Lament Of The Cherokee) Indian Reservation” (#20, 1968), continued to perform into the 00s
1940 ● Johnny Nash → Reggae-pop vocalist who was a major force in the mainstreaming of reggae music in the early 70s, “I Can See Clearly Now” (#1, 1972)
1940 ● Roger Cook → British pop music songwriter and performer, as Jonathan was one half the pop vocal duo David & Jonathan, “Michelle” (#18, Adult Contemporary #3, 1966), collaborated with Roger Greenaway (aka David) to pen dozens of pop-rock hit singles, including “Long Cool Woman In A Black Dress” (The Hollies, #2, 1972) and “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing” (The New Seekers, #7, 1971)
1942 ● Bob Kuban → Drummer and frontman for St. Louis-based one hit wonder horn-rock Bob Kuban & The In-Men (“The Cheater,” #12, 1966), continues to perform with various incarnations the band into the 10s
1943 ● Billy J. Kramer / (William Howard Ashton) → Frontman for British Invasion pop-rock The Dakotas, “Little Children” (#7, 1964) and four other Top 40 singles in 1964
1943 ● Edwin Hawkins / (Edwin Reuben Hawkins) → Multiple Grammy-winning contemporary gospel and R&B singer, composer, keyboardist and leader of the gospel-pop Edwin Hawkins Singers, best known for the catchy, unplanned worldwide hit “Oh Happy Day” (#4, R&B #2, CAN #2, UK #2, 1969) but racked up 19 other Grammy gospel nominations and three other wins over a 30-year music career, inducted into the Christian Music Hall of Fame in 2007, died from pancreatic cancer on 1/15/2018, age 74
1945 ● Ian Gillan → Heavy metal vocalist, joined hard rock/prog rock Deep Purple, “Smoke On The Water” (#4, 1973) in 1969 but left in 1973, sang lead on the Jesus Christ Superstar (1971) concept album and Broadway show soundtrack, solo and frontman for the Ian Gillan Band and Gillan, joined Black Sabbath in 1984, reunited with Deep Purple in late-1984
1947 ● George Newsome → Drums and vocals for Brit blues-rock Climax Blues Band, “Couldn’t Get It Right” (#3, 1977)
1948 ● Elliott Lurie → Co-founder, guitarist and singer/songwriter for one hit wonder pop-rock Looking Glass, “Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl)” (#1, 1972), now a movie music composer and arranger
1948 ● Susan Jacks / (Susan Pesklevits) → Canadian pop singer/songwriter with former husband Terry Jacks in pop-rock duo The Poppy Family, “Which Way You Goin’, Billy? (#2, 1969), then solo and songwriting
1951 ● John Deacon → Bassist and songwriter for camp rock/mock-opera/hard pop Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody” (#9, 1976), wrote or co-wrote “Stone Cold Crazy,” “You’re My Best Fiend,” “Another One Bites The Dust” (#1, 1980) and others, retired from the music business in the 90s
1963 ● Joey Tempest / (Joakim Larsson) → Vocals for Swedish hard rock/glam-metal Europe, “The Final Countdown” (#8, 1986)
1966 ● Lee Ann Womack → Grammy-winning traditional country and pop crossover singer/songwriter, “I Hope You Dance” (#14, Country #1, 2000), actress
1970 ● Fat Joe / (Joseph Cartagena) → Hip hop entertainer and entrepreneur, East Coast/gangsta/Latino rapper, “What’s Luv” (#2, 2002), founder and CEO of hip hop record label Terror Squad Entertainment
1970 ● MC Eric / (Eric Martin) → Vocals for Belgian studio-based electro-dance-pop “house” music Technotronic, “Pump Up The Jam” (#2, 1989), solo, producer, teacher
1976 ● Régine Chassagne → Singer, multi-instrumentalist musician and co-founding member, with her husband Win Butler, of Grammy-winning Canadian alt/indie rock Arcade Fire, “Keep The Car Running” (Alt #32, 2007)
1980 ● Darius Campbell-Danesh → Scottish stage actor, UK TV Popstars contestant in 2001 and folk-pop singer, “Colourblind” (UK #1, 2002)
1983 ● Missy Higgins / (Melissa Higgins) → Australian pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Where I Stood” (Adult Top 40 #6, Aussie #10, 2006)
1989 ● Lil’ Romeo / (Percy Miller, Jr.) → Pre-teen rapper, “My Baby” (#3, Rap #1, 2001), actor and host of his own Nickelodeon TV show Romeo, son of hardcore rapper Master P (Percy Miller)

August 20
1923 ● “Gentleman” Jim Reeves / (James Travis Reeves) → Country guitarist and singer, early purveyor of the “Nashville sound” combining country with pop sounds, first country-pop crossover hit, “He’ll Have to Go” (#2, Country #1, 1960) and over 70 other Country Top 20 hits, died in a single-engine plane crash on 7/31/1964, age 40
1931 ● Paul Robi → Early member and vocals for hugely successful R&B/doo wop The Platters, “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” (#1, 1958) and 13 other Top 20 hits between 1955 and 1967, continued with several splinter groups using variations on The Platters name into the 80s, died of pancreatic cancer on 2/1/1989, age 57
1933 ● Roland Janes → Rockabilly session guitarist at Sun Records (1956-1963) and important behind-the-scenes figure in the birth of rock ‘n’ roll, played on the most of the Sun recordings by Jerry Lee Lewis (“Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,” #3, R&B #1, 1957), Billy Lee Riley, Charlie Rich and other lesser stars, left to form his own record company but returned to Sun in the 80s and appears on grunge rock Mudhoney‘s album Tomorrow Hit Today (1998), died following a heart attack on 10/18/2013, age 70
1934 ● Sneaky Pete Kleinow / (Peter E. Kleinow) → Peddle steel guitarist, songwriter and session musician, original member of Flying Burrito Brothers, worked with Joan Baez, Eagles, Steve Miller Band, Joni Mitchell, Linda Ronstadt and many others, solo, died from complications of Alzheimer’s disease on 1/6/2007, age 72
1937 ● Sky “Sunlight” Saxon / (Richard Elvern Marsh) → Frontman and lead singer for L.A. psychedelic flower power/garage rock The Seeds, “Pushin’ Too Hard” (#36, 1967), continued to record and perform with various bands and eclectic projects through the 00s, died from renal failure caused by an untreated infection on 6/25/2000, age 71
1939 ● Pee Wee Middlebrooks / (Ralph Middlebrooks) → Trumpet and trombone for influential R&B/funk The Ohio Players, “Love Rollercoaster” (#1, 1975) and six other Top 40 hits in the mid-70s, died of cancer on 11/15/1997, age 58
1940 ● John Lantree → Bassist for one hit wonder English beat/pop-rock The Honeycombs, “Have I The Right?” (#5, 1964)
1941 ● David Brock → Co-founder, guitarist, bassist, songwriter and musical focus for space rock pioneers Hawkwind, “Silver Machine” (UK #3, 1972), solo
1941 ● Tom Coster → Keyboards and piano for San Francisco psych-jazz-rock “cosmic R&B” The Loading Zone, joined Latin-tinged rock Santana in 1972, “She’s Not There” (#27, 1977), since 1978 has fronted various jazz fusion combos
1941 ● Gilbert Moorer, Jr. → With his brother, Alvis, lead singer in R&B soul vocal group The Esquires (“Get On Up,” #11, 1967), died from throat cancer on 8/28/2008, age 67
1942 ● Isaac Hayes → Hugely influential R&B/soul artist, producer, composer, first as an in-house session musician, songwriter and record producer for Memphis-based Stax Records, later as a Grammy-winning solo artist and soundtrack composer, “Theme From Shaft” (#1, 1972), early rapper, “Ike’s Rap” (R&B Top 10, 1986), film actor, TV voice-over star as the character “Chef” on South Park, died following a stroke on 8/10/2008, age 65
1944 ● John Povey → Rhythm guitar for raunchy R&B/blues-rock British Invasion band The Pretty Things, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (UK #10, 1964)
1944 ● “Uncle John” Turner / (John Turner) → Drums and percussion for electric Texas blues-rock Johnny Winter Band, “Illustrated Man” (Mainstream Rock #36, 1991), later in Krackerjack with Stevie Ray Vaughan, sessions and tours with B. B. King, Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, Albert Collins and others, died on 7/26/1997, age 62
1946 ● Ralf Hütter → Co-founder, lead singer, keyboardist and de facto leader of German electro-rock pioneers Kraftwerk, “Autobahn” (#25, 1975)
1947 ● James Pankow → Trombonist, brass instrument arranger, songwriter and constant member of for pop-rock/horn band Chicago, wrote “Make Me Smile” (#9, 1970), “Colour My World” (#7, 1970), “Just You “N” Me” (#4, 1973) and others
1948 ● Robert Plant → Renowned and venerable rock vocalist and lyricist for hard rock Led Zeppelin, “Whole Lotta Love” (#4, 1969), solo, “Big Log” (#20, Mainstream Rock #6, 1983), formed The Honeydrippers with Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Nile Rodgers, “Sea Of Love” (#3, 1984), Grammy-winning collaboration album with country singer Alison Krauss, Raising Sand (#2, 2007), #1 in Rolling Stone magazine’s 2011 readers’ poll of the Best Lead Singers of All Time
1949 ● Phil Lynott → Irish singer, songwriter, bassist and bandleader for underrated Irish hard rock Thin Lizzy, “The Boys Are Back In Town” (#12, 1976), solo, founded and fronted hard rock Grand Slam, fell into a coma following a drug overdose and died on 1/4/2006, age 56
1952 ● John Hiatt → Respected but commercially-neglected folk-rock singer/songwriter, guitarist and pianist, “Slow Turning” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1988), wrote songs covered by Paula Abdul, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, B. B. King, Aaron Neville, Iggy Pop, Bonnie Raitt and many others
1952 ● Rudy Gatlin → Country-pop music singer with brothers Larry and Rudy in Grammy-winning sibling trio The Gatlin Brothers, “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer To You)” (Country #1, 1983) and 16 other Country Top 10 hits in the 80s and 90s, composed music for TV specials and operated two theme restaurants in the 90s
1952 ● Doug Fieger → Lead vocals and rhythm guitar for power pop The Knack, “My Sharona” (#1, 1979), died of cancer on 2/14/2010, age 57
1954 ● Barry Johnson → Bassist for Philly-style Brit R&B/soul Sweet Sensation, “Sad Sweet Dreamer” (, , 1975)
1954 ● Nick Kane → Lead guitar for Grammy-winning country-rock The Mavericks, “All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down” (Country #13, 1996)
1961 ● David Morales → DJ, Grammy-winning remixer, producer and post-disco house music pioneer, “Needin’ U” (Dance/Club #1, 1998)
1966 ● Dimebag Abbott / (Darrell Abbott) → With brother Vincent Paul Abbott, co-founder and guitarist in thrash metal Pantera, “Planet Caravan” (Mainstream Rock #21, 1994) and supergroup Damageplan, “Save Me” (Mainstream Rock #16, 2004), died from gunshot wounds when a man stormed the stage and began firing shots at the band and crowd on 12/8/2004, age 38
1967 ● Serj Tankian → Vocals for Grammy-winning, Armenian-American hard rock/alt metal System Of A Down, “Aerials” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2002)
1968 ● Dina Carroll / (Geraldine Carroll) → Successful late-80s and 90s Brit soul-pop and dance-pop singer of Scottish and African American descent, “Don’t Be A Stranger” (UK #3, 1993) and “Special Kind Of Love” (Dance/Club #4, 1993)
1970 ● Fred Durst → Co-founder, lead vocals and frontman for rap-metal Limp Bizkit, “Nookie” (Mainstream Rock #6, 1999), producer, music video director, solo
1979 ● Jamie Cullum → Brit jazz-pop and easy listening singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, “These Are The Days” (UK #12, 2004)
1985 ● Mikey Shoes / (Michael Shuman) → Bassist for stoner metal Queens Of The Stone Age, “No One Knows” (#51, Mainstream Rock #5, 2002), also co-fronted L.A. area rock bands Wires On Fire and Jubilee
1992 ● Demi Lovato / (Demetria Lovato) → Singer, songwriter, musician and actress, played “Mitchie Torres” in the Disney Channel movie Camp Rock (2008), pop solo singer, “Here We Go Again” (#15, 2009)

August 21
1904 ● Count Basie / (William Allen Basie) → Renowned nine-time Grammy-winning swing era jazz, blues and swing pianist, composer and bandleader, “April In Paris” (#28, R&B #8, 1956), led his Count Basie Orchestra for nearly 50 years, died of pancreatic cancer on 4/26/1984 , age 79
1938 ● Kenny Rogers / (Kenneth Ray Rogers) → Grammy-winning, multi-genre singer and songwriter, vocals for folk-pop The New Christy Minstrels, “Green, Green” (#14, 1963), frontman for country-pop The First Edition, “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town” (#6, 1969), prolific solo career with dozens of pop and country Top 10 hits, including “Lucille” (#5, 1977), “Lady” (#1, 1980), producer, TV and film actor, entrepreneur and restaurateur
1939 ● Harold Reid → Bass vocals and songwriter in country-gospel-pop crossover harmonic quartet The Statler Brothers (“Flowers On The Wall,” #4, Country #2, 1965), he and his younger brother, Don were the only brothers in the group and no one was named Statler, retired after the band’s farewell tour in 2002
1944 ● Jackie DeShannon / (Sharon Lee Myers) → Early female rock ‘n’ roll singer/songwriter, toured with The Beatles in 1964, co-wrote songs with Jimmy Page and Randy Newman, moved to folk-pop sounds in the late-60s, wrote and sang “Put A Little Love In Your Heart” (#4, 1969), co-wrote Grammy-winning “Bette Davis Eyes” for Kim Carnes (#1, 1981)
1947 ● Carl Giammarese → Guitarist and co-founder of Chicago-based pop-horn-rock The Buckinghams, “Kind Of A Drag” (#1, 1967), continues to front the band on the oldies circuit
1952 ● Glenn Hughes → Bass and vocals for Brit hard rock Trapeze, left in 1973 to join Deep Purple, “Smoke On The Water” (#4, 1973), sang for Black Sabbath on the Seventh Star album (1986), various solo and collaboration albums, currently fronts hard rock supergroup Black Country Communion
1952 ● Joe Strummer / (John Graham Mellor) → Frontman and principal songwriter of influential and acclaimed punk-ska-dance-rock The Clash, “Rock The Casbah” (#8, 1982), actor, film score composer, radio host, solo and frontman for The Mescaleros, died of a heart attack on 12/22/2002, age 50
1954 ● Steve Smith → Drummer for arena rock Journey, “Who’s Crying Now” (#4, 1981) during the band’s peak years in the late-70s and early 80s, founded fusion group Vital Information in 1983, joined fusion group Steps Ahead in 1986, in 2001 voted into the Top 25 Drummers of All Time list in Modern Drummer magazine
1957 ● Budgie / (Peter Edward Clarke) → Drummer for punk then dance-rock Siouxsie & The Banshees, “Kiss Them For Me”, (#23, 1991), side project The Creatures, “Right Now” (UK #14, 1983), toured with John Cale, sessions
1957 ● Kim Sledge → Lead vocals for family R&B/disco girl-group Sister Sledge and the disco anthem “We Are Family” (#2, 1979) plus ten other R&B Top 10 hits
1971 ● Master H. / (Liam Howlett) → MC and vocals for “big beat” electronic dance/rap The Prodigy, “Firestarter” (#30, 1996), producer and music DJ
1979 ● Kelis / (Kelis Rogers) → Urban contemporary R&B vocalist, “Milkshake” (#3, Dance/Club #1, 2003), former spouse of rapper Nas
1984 ● Melissa Schuman → Vocals for R&B/dance-pop all-girl quartet Dream, “He Loves U Not” (#2, 2000), solo, actress
1986 ● Conor Clapton → Son of rock superstar Eric Clapton and subject of his father’s lamenting, Grammy-winning song “Tears In Heaven” (#1, 1992) about the toddler’s tragic death from a fall out of a 53rd floor apartment window in New York City on 3/20/1991, age 4

August 22
1917 ● John Lee Hooker → Boogie-blues singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Boogie Chillen” (R&B #1, 1948) and “Boom Boom” (#60, R&B #16, 1962), develop the “talking blues” style, recorded over 100 albums, won four Grammys between 1989 and 1997, died of natural causes on 6/21/2001, age 83
1926 ● Bob Flanigan / (Robert Lee Flanigan) → Founding member, bassist, trombonist and tenor in clean-cut, jazz/collegiate-pop harmony quartet The Four Freshmen (“Graduation Day,” #17, 1956), a major influence on Brian Wilson of The Beach Boyss but lost relevance during the British Invasion, died of congestive heart failure on 5/15/2011, age 84
1936 ● Dale Hawkins / (Delmar Allen Hawkins) → Louisiana “swamp rock” and rockabilly pioneer, “Susie Q” (#27, R&B #7, 1957), AM pop record producer including John Fred & His Playboy Band‘s “Judy In Disguise (#1, 1968), died of colon cancer on 2/13/2010, age 73
1936 ● Chuck Brown / (Charles Louis Brown) → Guitarist, singer, songwriter, bandleader and the “Grandfather of Go-Go” music, the sub-genre of funk he helped develop in the 70s in metro Washington, DC, fronted Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers (“Bustin’ Loose,” #34, R&B #1, 1979), died from multiple organ failure on 5/16/2012, age 75
1942 ● Joseph Chambers → Guitarist for psychedelic soul-rock sibling group The Chambers Brothers, “Time Has Come Today” (#11, 1968)
1945 ● Ron Dante / (Carmine Granito) → Singer, songwriter, session musician and vocals for “virtual” bubblegum-pop studio bands The Detergents (“Leader Of The Laundromat,” #19, 1965), TV cartoon show-based The Archies (“Sugar Sugar,” #1, 1967) and one hit wonder The Cuff Links (“Tracy,” #9, 1969), commercial jingle vocalist (McDonalds’ “You deserve a break today”), producer for Barry Manilow (“I Write The Songs,” #1, 1976), Cher, John Denver and others, Broadway show producer
1946 ● Mutha Withem / (Gary Withem) → Keyboards for pop-rock Gary Puckett & The Union Gap, “Young Girl” (#2, 1968), teaches high school music near San Diego
1947 ● Donna Jean Godchaux / (Donna Jean Thatcher Godchaux) → Session backing vocalist, sang with the Grateful Dead from 1972 to 1979 (only woman ever officially billed as a Grateful Dead bandmember), also vocals for Robert Hunter and the Jerry Garcia Band, released a self-titled album with her husband and former Dead keyboardist Keith Godchaux
1948 ● David Marks → Pop singer, songwriter, session guitarist and original member of The Beach Boys (“Surfin’ Safari,” #3, 1963) from 1962-63, left the band but returned for two reunions in 1997 and 2012, worked as a session musician in the intervals
1949 ● Sam Neely → Talented country-pop singer and songwriter with star potential but minimal success, his highest charting tune was “You Can Have Her” (#34, Country #49, 1974), faded into obscurity in the late 80s and died from a heart attack while mowing the lawn on 7/19/2006, age 56
1952 ● Peter Laughner → Early and important figure in the development of punk and New Wave through his work with several Cleveland-area alt rock bands in the early 70s, his co-founding of eclectic underground/art rock Pere Ubu (“Waiting For Mary,” Modern Rock #6, 1989) and his solo efforts prior to his untimely death from acute pancreatitis on 6/22/1977, age 24
1956 ● Chris Biondo → Backing band guitarist, bassist and producer for Eva Cassidy, mixed-genre vocal interpreter of American classics and pop tunes including “Over The Rainbow” (1992), he produced all three of her posthumous UK #1 albums
1958 ● Ian Mitchell → Nine-month stint as bassist and vocals for Scottish teen-pop Bay City Rollers, “Saturday Night” (#1, 1976), then co-founded pop-rock Rosetta Stone, the Ian Mitchell Band and La Rox, none of which were successful except outside the US and UK
1958 ● Vernon Reid → Guitarist and songwriter for prog-funk-metal Living Colour, “Cult Of Personality” (#13, 1988), sessions
1961 ● Debbi Peterson → Drummer for New Wave pop-rock girl-group The Bangles, “Walk Like An Egyptian” (#1, 1986)
1961 ● Roland Orzabal → Vocals, guitar and songwriting for New Wave synth-pop Tears For Fears, “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” (#1, 1085)
1963 ● James DeBarge → With his sister and three brothers, vocals in R&B/urban contemporary dance-pop sibling quintet Debarge, “All This Love” (#17, 1983)
1963 ● Tori Amos / (Myra Ellen Amos) → Alternative rock keyboardist and forefront of the 90s singer/songwriter revival, reestablished the piano as a rock instrument, “Cornflake Girl” (Modern Rock #1, UK #4, 1994)
1966 ● The Genius (also GZA) / (Gary Grice) → Highly literate rapper, songwriter and founding member of influential East Coast rap collective Wu-Tang Clan, “C.R.E.A.M.” (Hot Rap #8, 1994), left for a part-time solo career (“Liquid Swords,” #48, Rap #3, 1995) and various collaboration projects
1967 ● Layne Staley → Lead singer and co-lyricist for alterna-metal/hard rock Alice In Chains, “No Excuses” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1994), died from a “speedball” injection of heroin and cocaine on 4/5/2002, age 34
1969 ● Steve Cradock → Guitarist for mod revival Britpop/trad rock Ocean Colour Scene, “The Day We Caught The Train” (UK #4, 1996) plus 16 other UK Top 40 singles, concurrently a member of Paul Weller‘s backing band
1972 ● Paul Douchette → Former drummer and later rhythm guitarist for post-grunge alt rock Matchbox Twenty, “Bent” (#1, 2000)
1973 ● Howie D. / (Howie Dorough) → Vocals, guitar and percussion for pop-dance-hip hop Backstreet Boys, “Quit Playing Games With My Heart” (#2, 1997), solo, occasional TV actor
1978 ● Jeff Stinco / (Jean-Francoise Stinco) → Lead guitar for French-Canadian pop-punk Simple Plan, “Perfect” (#24, Canada #5, 2003)

August 23
1900 ● Malvina Reynolds → Folk-pop singer, songwriter and political activist, wrote “Little Boxes” for Pete Seeger (#70, 1964), “What Have They Done To The Rain?” for The Searchers (#29, 1965), songs covered by Joan Baez, Judy Collins and others, and children’s songs and material for the TV show Sesame Street, died on 3/17/1978, age 77
1912 ● Gene Kelly → Broadway and film actor, dancer and adult pop singer, a dominant force in Hollywood musical films of the 40s and 50s, best known for his lead role in the highly-regarded Singin’ In The Rain (1952), died in his sleep on 2/2/1996, age 83
1913 ● Bob Crosby → Swing-era vocalist and Dixieland bandleader, younger brother of crooner Bing Crosby, fronted authentic New Orleans swing band The Bob-Cats in the 30s, turned to radio in the 40s and became a popular variety program host, scored a hit duet single with Patty Andrews and “The Pussycat Song (Nyot! Nyow! Nyot!)” (#12, 1953), reunited The Bob-Cats for occasional performances until his death from cancer on 3/9/1993, age 79
1917 ● Tex Williams / (Sollie Paul Williams) → “Talking blues” style Western swing singer, songwriter, guitarist and bandleader with ten Country Top 10 hits over a 35 year career, including “Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette)” (Country #1, 1947), died from pancreatic cancer on 10/11/1985, age 68
1936 ● Rudy Lewis / (Charles Rudolph Harrell) → Lead vocals from 1960-1964 for R&B/soul-doo wop The Drifters, “Up On The Roof” (#5, 1963), died in his sleep on 5/20/1964, the night before the group recorded “Under The Boardwalk” (#4, 1964) without him, age 27
1941 ● Pete Shannon / (Peter Shannon Harris) → Bassist for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964)
1942 ● Roger Greenaway → British pop music songwriter and performer, as David was one half the pop vocal duo David & Jonathan, “Michelle” (#18, Adult Contemporary #3, 1966), collaborated with Roger Cook (aka Jonathan) to pen dozens of pop-rock hit singles, including “Long Cool Woman In A Black Dress” (The Hollies, #2, 1972) and “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing” (The New Seekers, #7, 1971)
1942 ● Spaghetti Micale / (Anthony Micale) → Lead vocal for blue-eyed soul/doo wop The Reflections (“(Just Like) Romeo And Juliet,” #6, 1964), continues to perform with the group into the 10s
1943 ● Mick Burt / (Michael Arthur Burt) → Drummer backing Brit novelty pop-“rockney” duo Chas & Dave, “Gertcha” (UK #20, 1979)
1945 ● Pete Fornatale → Award-winning early progressive FM radio DJ, first at WFUV-FM (Fordham University, New York) and, beginning in 1969, on trendsetting WNEW-FM, returned to WFUV in 2001, hosted Sirius XM satellite program, authored several books on rock culture, died from a stroke on 4/26/2012, age 66
1946 ● Jim Sohns → Founding member and vocals for Chicago blues-pop-rock Shadows of Knight, “Gloria” (#10, 1965), continues to front incarnations of the band on the oldies circuit
1946 ● Keith Moon → Legendary, exuberant and innovative drummer for hard rock The Who, “I Can See For Miles” (#9, 1967), recorded one solo album which was issued posthumously, voted #2 in a 2001 readers’ poll by Rolling Stone magazine for the Best Drummers of All Time, died after ingesting an overdose of alcohol withdrawal pills on 9/7/1978, age 32
1947 ● Linda Pettifer Thompson → Folk-rock singer/songwriter and recognized figure in the British folk-rock scene in the 70s and 80s, recorded with Paul McNeill and later with Sandy Denny and others as The Bunch, teamed with ex-Fairport Convention (“Si Tu Dos Partir,” UK #21, 1969) guitarist and songwriter Richard Thompson and released six critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful albums in 10 years as a husband-and-wife duo, after breaking up continued to record and write music sporadically, issued her second solo LP, Won’t Be Long Now in 2013
1947 ● George McCorkle → Founding member and guitarist for Southern rock The Marshall Tucker Band, wrote “Fire On The Mountain” (#38, 1975), left the band in 1984 for a songwriting career, issued a solo album in 1999, died of cancer on 6/29/2007, age 59
1949 ● Rick Springfield / (Richard Springthorpe) → Australian-born singer/songwriter, “Jessie’s Girl” (#1, 1981) plus 14 other Top 40 hits, TV soap opera actor (Dr. Noah Drake on General Hospital), author
1951 ● Jimi Jamison / (Jimmy Wayne Jamison) → Vocalist for pop-rock Target, joined hard AOR/arena rock Survivor in 1984, “Burning Heart” (#2, 1985), co-wrote and sang “I’m Always Here”, the theme from the TV show Baywatch, solo, charity organizer and fundraiser
1951 ● Mark Hudson / (Mark Jeffrey Hudson) → Member of sibling musical trio The Hudson Brothers, “So You Are A Star” (#21, 1974), producer/writer for Aerosmith, Ringo Starr, Ozzy Osbourne, others
1953 ● Bobby G. / (Robert Alan Gubby) → Vocals for Brit mixed-gender euro-pop/disco Bucks Fizz, “Making Your Mind Up” (UK #1, 1981)
1954 ● Mark Avsec → Keyboardist, songwriter and producer, toured with funk-rock Wild Cherry, “Play That Funky Music” (#1, 1976), co-founded, managed, produced and wrote or co-wrote all the music for pop-rock Donnie Iris & The Cruisers, “Ah! Leah!” (#29, 1980), played with the James Gang, became an intellectual property attorney specializing in music copyrights
1959 ● Edwyn Collins → Singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer, frontman for Scottish neo-pop revival Orange Juice, “Rip It Up” (UK #8, 1984), then power pop solo career, “A Girl Like You” (#32, UK #4, 1994), TV actor and producer
1961 ● Dean DeLeo → Guitarist for alt hard rock Stone Temple Pilots, “Interstate Love Song” (#18, 1994), during STP breaks co-founded spin-off bands Talk Show and Army Of Anyone
1962 ● Shaun Ryder → Vocals for Manchester electro-dance club Happy Mondays, “Stinkin Thinkin” (Dance/Club #1, 1992), co-founded alt Brit-pop Black Grape, “England’s Irie” (UK #6, 1996), TV actor
1964 ● Pebbles / (Perri Alette McKissack Nixon) → Backing vocals for R&B/soul-funk Con Funk Shun, “Ffun” (#23, R&B #1, 1978), then dance-pop solo, “Mercedes Boy” (#2, 1988), discovered and managed R&B/urban soul-dance-pop girl trio TLC, “Creep” (#1, 1994), one of the most successful female groups of all time
1967 ● Cedella Marley → With her two brothers and sister, vocals for five time Grammy-winning reggae-pop Ziggy Marley & The Melody Makers, “Tomorrow People” (Mainstream Rock #16, 1988), executive with Tuff Gong International records, fashion designer
1970 ● River Jude Phoenix → Teen icon, film and TV actor, starred in Stand By Me (1986) and 14 other films plus numerous TV movies and programs, singer, songwriter, guitarist and frontman for alt folk-rock Aleka’s Attic, “Too Many Colors” (1990), died of a drug overdose on 10/31/1993, age 23
1974 ● Shifty Shellshock / (Seth Brooks Binzer) → Frontman for rap rock Crazy Town, “Butterfly” (#1, 2001)
1978 ● Julian Casablancas → Guitar and vocals for early 00s garage rock revival The Strokes, “Juicebox” (Modern Rock #9, 2005)
1979 ● Richard Neville Dobson → Vocals for Brit dance-pop boy band 5ive (aka Five), “When The Lights Go Out” (#10, 1998)
1981 ● Natalie Horler → Vocals in German Euro-dance trio Cascada, “Everytime We Touch” (#10, 2005) and “Evacuate the Dancefloor” (#25, UK #1, 2009)
1986 ● Skyblu / (Skyler Austen Gordy) → With his uncle, Redfoo (Stefan Kendal Gordy), one half the electropop, hip house duo LMFAO, “Party Rock Anthem” (worldwide #1, 2011), grandson of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, Jr.

August 24
1897 ● Fred Rose → Country music songwriter and co-founder of Acuff-Rose Publishing, the first Nashville music publishing company and a giant in the industry, wrote or co-wrote hundreds of songs for others, including Hank Williams, Willie Nelson and Sophie Tucker, died from a heart attack on 12/1/1954, age 57
1905 ● Big Boy Crudup / (Arthur Crudup) → Delta blues singer, songwriter and guitarist, wrote numerous blues songs covered by others, including “That’s Alright (Mama)”, Elvis Presley‘s first Sun Records single in 1954, died nearly penniless from a heart attack on 3/28/1974, age 68
1915 ● Wynonie Harris / (Raoul J. Cita) → Blues shouter and humorous, ribald R&B singer in the 40s and 50s, covered “Good Rockin’ Tonight” (1948) and is considered a forerunner of rock ‘n’ roll, died from throat cancer on 6/14/1969, age 53
1924 ● Louis Teicher → Julliard-trained pianist and, with Arthur Ferrante, one half of the easy listening piano duo Ferrante & Teicher, known for their instrumental renditions of classical pieces, movie themes and show tunes, including “Tonight” (#10, AC #2, 1961) and “Midnight Cowboy” (#8, AC #2, 1969), died from a heart attack on 8/3/2008, age 83
1929 ● William Winfield → Lead singer for critically recognized but commercially little known R&B/doo wop The Harptones, “Life Is But A Dream” (1955), continues to sing with the group on the oldies circuit
1933 ● “Rupie The Groupie” Loewenstein / (Rupert Louis Ferdinand Frederick Constantine Lofredo Leopold Herbert Maximilian Hubert John Henry zu Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg, Count of Loewenstein-Scharffeneck) → Bavarian aristocrat and investment advisor turned financial and tax manager to The Rolling Stones from 1968-2007, credited with a behind-the-scenes transformation of the band from cash-poor wannabes into a globally-recognized brand and music powerhouse while managing their financial excesses and expanding egos, died of complications from Parkinson’s disease on 5/20/2014, age 87
1938 ● David Freiberg → Vocals and guitar for psychedelic folk-rock Quicksilver Messenger Service, “Fresh Air” (#49, 1970), sessions for David Crosby, Mickey Hart and others, toured with and joined Jefferson Airplane and stayed with the group went it morphed into Jefferson Starship, “Miracles” (#3, 1975), left in 1984
1938 ● Mason Williams → Singer, songwriter and acoustic guitarist, won a Grammy Award for his instrumental classical/folk-rock “Classical Gas” (#2, 1968), comedy writer for Saturday Night Live and other TV programs, poet and author of several books
1939 ● Ernest Wright, Jr. → Early member and backing vocals for R&B/doo wop Little Anthony And The Imperials</strong ("Tears On My Pillow," #4, 1958), left in 1971 to join doo wop/soul The Platters, returned in 1992 and still tours with two other remaining members of the group into the 10s
1940 ● Tony Secunda / (Anthony Michael Secunda) → Businessman, promoter and manager for The Moody Blues (“Go Now!”, #1, 1965), The Move, Procol Harum (“A Whiter Shade Of Pale,” #5, 1967) and T. Rex (“Bang A Gong (Get It On),” #10, 1971), also discovered Chrissy Hynde of The Pretenders, died of a heart attack on 2/12/1995, age 54
1942 ● Marshall Thompson → Founding member of Chicago R&B/smooth soul vocal quartet the Chi-Lites (“Oh Girl,” #1, R&B #1, 1972), continued to record and perform with the group through the 90s, jailed for selling stolen police badges in 2001, returned to the group with his wife, Tara and continues into the 10s
1942 ● Jimmy Soul / (James McCleese) → Teenaged gospel singer turned two hit wonder R&B/soul vocalist with a calypso-tinged, “Twistin’ Mathilda” (#2, 1962) and the rollicking “If You Wanna Be Happy” (#1, 1963), died from a heart attack on 6/25/1988, age 45
1943 ● John Cipollina → Founder and trendsetting lead guitarist for psychedelic folk-rock Quicksilver Messenger Service, “Fresh Air” (#49, 1970), formed hard rock Copperhead and played with numerous other rock bands, #32 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time, died from emphysema on 5/29/1989, age 45
1944 ● James Brady → Singer in light folk sunshine-pop, two hit wonder vocal trio The Sandpipers, “Guantanamera” (#9, 1966) and “Come Saturday Morning” (#17, 1970)
1944 ● Jim Capaldi / (Nicola James Capaldi) → Drummer, songwriter and founding member of folk-psych-rock Traffic, “Paper Sun” (#94, UK #5, 1967), began solo career in 1972 and released “Love Hurts” (UK #4, 1975) and “That’s Love” (#28, 1982), session work and songwriting collaborations, died from stomach cancer on 1/28/2005, age 60
1945 ● Ken Hensley → Keyboards and guitar for hard/prog rock Spice, renamed Uriah Heep, wrote or co-wrote many of their songs, including “Easy Livin'” (#39, 1972), fronted or played with numerous hard rock bands over the past 30 years, composed the rock opera Blood On The Highway (2006) and wrote two books, one about Uriah Heep and the other an autobiography
1945 ● Molly Duncan / (Malcolm Duncan) → Tenor saxophonist and founding member of Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974), sessions and tours with Ray Charles, Eric Clapton, Dire Straits, Tom Petty and others
1945 ● Randy Silverman → Vocals for New York R&B/doo wop one hit wonder Vito & The Salutations, “Unchained Melody” (1963)
1947 ● Jim Fox → Co-founder, drummer and only constant member of underrated hard rock The James Gang, “Funk #49” (#59, 1970) and “Walk Away” (#51, 1971), also played with oldies revival lineups of 60s garage/horn rock The Outsiders, “Time Won’t Let Me” (#5, 1966)
1948 ● Jean-Michel Jarre → Pioneering French electronic synth-pop and ambient music composer, “Oxygene Part IV” (UK #4, 1979) and album Chronologie (#10, UK #9, 1993)
1951 ● Michael DeRosier → Session drummer and later full-time member of hard rock Heart, “Magic Man” (#9, 1976), left in 1982 to join Boston-offshoot AOR/arena rock Orion The Hunter, “So You Ran” (#58, 1984), joined former Heart bandmates in 1988 to co-found AOR/hard rock Alias, “More Than Words Can Say” (#2, 1990)
1951 ● Danny Joe Brown → Lead vocals for Southern rock power-guitar band Molly Hatchet, “Flirtin’ With Disaster” (#42, 1979), died from effects of diabetes and a stroke on 3/10/2005, age 53
1955 ● Jeffrey Daniel → Dancer on Soul Train music TV show, tapped to replace session singers and dancers in pre-fab disco/pop Shalamar, “The Second Time Around” (#8, Dance/Club #1, 1980), now a British TV host
1961 ● Colin Angus → Founding member, bassist and vocals for Scottish electronic psych/dance rock crossover band The Shamen, “Ebeneezer Goode” (UK #1, 1992)
1961 ● Mark Bedford → Bassist for punk/ska revival Madness, “Our House” (#7, 1982) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles
1963 ● John Bush → Lead vocals for L.A. heavy metal Armored Saint, left in 1990 for speed/thrash metal Anthrax, “Only” (Mainstream #26, 1993)
1964 ● Oteil Burbridge → Classical-trained, Grammy-winning jazz and rock bassist for The Allman Brothers Band, his own Oteil & The Pacemakers, Dead & Company, Phish and various permutations of Grateful Dead and Allman Brothers spin-offs
1968 ● Andreas Kisser → Guitarist for Brazilian heavy metal/thrash metal Sepultura, “Roots Bloody Roots” (UK #19, 1996), sessions and film soundtracks
1970 ● Krystyn Robyn Osborn → Vocalist and chief songwriter for country-pop sister trio SHeDAISY, “I Will…But” (#43, Country #2, 1999)

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This Week’s Birthdays (August 11 – 17)

Happy Birthday this week to:

August 11
1922 ● Ronald Erle Grainer → Australian-born, UK-based film and TV soundtrack composer, wrote score for To Sir, With Love (1967) and theme to BBC sci-fi TV show Doctor Who (1963-1986, 2005 to present) plus dozens of other films and programs, died from spinal cancer on 2/21/1981, age 58
1925 ● Mike Douglas / (Michael Delaney Dowd, Jr.) → Successful “Big Band” and pop singer, first with the Kay Kyser Band in the 40s and later in Los Angeles nightclubs, in the 60s became a widely popular talk show host of Emmy-winning, nationally-syndicated The Mike Douglas Show and a staunch supporter of all things Philadelphia, reprised his singing career with “The Men In My Little Girl’s Life” (#6, 1966), died from dehydration on 8/11/2006, his 81st birthday
1937 ● Shel Talmy → Record producer and music arranger with a deep resume in a short period in the mid-60s, including British Invasion guitar rock bands The Kinks (“You Really Got Me,” #7, UK #1, 1964) and The Who (“I Can’t Explain,” #93, UK #8, 1965 and their debut album My Generation, UK #5, 1965), plus cult group The Creation, Aussie rock ‘n’ roller The Easybeats (“Friday On My Mind,” #16, UK #6, 1967), unsuccessful early songs for future star Boston, folk-rock The Pentangle, folk-pop Chad & Jeremy and others, “retired” from producing in the 70s
1939 ● Ronnie Dawson / (Ronald Monroe Dawson) → The “Blond Bomber,” rockabilly and rock ‘n’ roll guitarist and bandleader with several unremarkable 50s singles and extensive session work in the 60s, found relative success in the U.K. n the 80s and 90s and toured extensively, died from throat cancer on 9/30/2003, age 64
1942 ● Guy Villari → Lead vocals for two hit wonder doo wop quartet The Regents, original “Barbara Ann” (#13, 1961) and “Run Around” (#28, 1961)
1942 ● Mike Hugg → Drums, percussion and second longest surviving member of British Invasion pop-rock Manfred Mann, “Do Wah Diddy Diddy” (#1, 1964), film and TV theme composer, advertising jingle writer, solo artist
1943 ● Jim Kale / (Michael James Kale) → Bassist for Canadian rockers The Guess Who, “American Woman” (#1, 1970), has managed and toured with various reincarnations of the band through the 00s
1943 ● Kenny Gamble / (Kenneth Gamble) → With partner Leon Huff in the famed Philadelphia songwriting and production team of Gamble & Huff, crafted the “Philly soul” sound as the founders and chief creative team for Motown-rival Philadelphia International Records, wrote and produced dozens of hits from “Expressway To Your Heart” (The Soul Survivors, #4, R&B #3, 1967) to “Love Train” (The O’Jays, #1, R&B #1, 1872) and “Close the Door” (Teddy Pendergrass, #25, R&B #1, 1978), after the disco era the shine on the label faded but the two continued to write into the 10s
1943 ● Denis Payton / (Denis Archibald West Payton) → Horns and backing vocals for British Invasion pop-rock The Dave Clark Five, “Catch Us If You Can” (#4, 1965) and 13 other Top 20 hits in the US (but only nine in their home UK), died from cancer on 12/17/2006, age 63
1948 ● Bill Hurd → Keyboards for glam rock/rock ‘n roll revival The Rubettes, “Sugar Baby Love” (, US #37, 1974)
1949 ● Eric Carmen → Founding member, keyboards and vocals for Cleveland garage rock quartet The Choir, “It’s Cold Outside” (#68, 1967), then co-founded power pop The Raspberries, “Go All The Way” (#5, 1972), started soft rock solo career in 1975, “All By Myself” (#2, 1976) and six other Top 40 hits
1950 ● Erik Braunn / (Erik Keith Braunn) → Teenaged guitarist for psych-rock Iron Butterfly, “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” (#30, 1970),left in 1969 for session work and production until his death from a birth defect-related heart attack on 7/25/2003, age 53
1952 ● Bob Mothersbaugh → Founding member, lead guitarist and vocalist for quirky 80s pop-rock Devo, “Whip It” (#14, 1980), also produced soundtracks for film and television, including the Rugrats series during the 90s, rejoined Devo bandmates in music production company Mutato Muzika
1954 ● Bryan Bassett → Guitar and vocals for one hit wonder funk-pop Wild Cherry, “Play That Funky Music” (#1, 1976), started music producer career in the 80s, toured with hard rock Foghat and Southern hard rock Molly Hatchet in the 90s and 00s
1954 ● Joe Jackson / (David Ian Jackson) → Punk-challenging British New Wave pop-rock singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, “Steppin’ Out” (#6, 1982), moved into eclectic pop-jazz-classical fusion in the 90s, won Grammy Award – Best Pop Instrumental Album in 2000 for Jackson: Symphony 1
1956 ● Alan Frew → Vocals for Canadian pop-rock Glass Tiger, “Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone)” (#2, 1986), solo
1957 ● Richie Ramone / (Richard Reinhardt) → Drummer and songwriter, joined punk rock The Ramones in 1983, wrote hit song “Somebody Put Something In My Drink” (1986)
1958 ● Jah Wobble / (John Joseph Wardle) → Bassist, vocalist, songwriter and co-founder of punk rock Public Image Ltd., “This Is Not A Love Song” (UK #5, 1983), solo
1960 ● Paul Gendler → Guitarist for Brit dance-pop band Modern Romance, “Can You Move” (Dance/Club #2, 1981) and “Best Years Of Our Lives” (UK #4, 1982)
1962 ● Bragi Ólafsson → Bassist for Icelandic alt pop-rock The Sugarcubes, “Hit” (Modern Rock #1, 1991)
1964 ● Hamish Seelochan → Vocals in Brit R&B/neo-soul-funk The Pasadenas, “Tribute (Right On)” (Dance/Club #27, UK #5, 1988)
1968 ● Charlie Sexton → Blues-rock guitarist, singer, songwriter, bandleader and solo artist, “Beat’s So Lonely” (#17, 1985) from his debut album at age 16, sessions for Bob Dylan, Keith Richards, Ron Wood and others
1970 ● Ali Shaheed Muhammad → DJ/producer for artistic hip hop jazz-rap fusion trio A Tribe Called Quest, “Check The Rhime” (Rap #1, 1991), solo, producer
1970 ● Andy Bell → Guitar and vocals for Brit neo-psych “shoegazing” band Ride, “Twisterella” (Modern Rock #12, 1992), later Hurricane , joined Oasis in 1999
1976 ● Ben Gibbard → Vocals for indie pop/rock Death Cab For Cutie, “Soul Meets Body” (Modern Rock #5, 2005)
1976 ● Brendan Bayliss → Founding member, lead guitarist and vocalist for neo-prog rock jam band Umphrey’s McGee, album Mantis (#62, Indie #6, 2009)
1978 ● Mack Daddy / (Chris Kelly) → Vocals for teen sensation pop-rap duo Kriss Kross, “Jump” (#1, 1992), died from an apparent drug overdose on 5/1/2013, age 34
1981 ● Sandi Thom → Scottish neo-folk-rock singer/songwriter, “I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker (With Flowers In My Hair)”, the first song to reach UK #1 based solely on the strength of downloads
1985 ● Asher Roth → White suburban rapper, “I Love College” (#12, 2009), built an early following through web sites Facebook and MySpace
1985 ● J-Boog / (Jarell Houston) → Vocals for R&B/hip hop urban boy band B2K, “Bump, Bump, Bump” (#1, 2002)

August 12
1918 ● Sid Bernstein → Music producer, promoter and concert impresario best known for bringing The Beatles to New York’s Carnegie Hall in 1964 and Shea Stadium in 1965, also booked shows in New York for The Rolling Stones, Herman’s Hermits, The Moody Blues, The Kinks and other British Invasion bands, managed The Rascals and Laura Nyro in the 60s and early 70s, later arranged tours for Jimi Hendrix, Fleetwood Mac and others, died at age 95 on 8/21/2013, age 95
1918 ● Roy C. Bennett / (Israel Brodsky) → Songwriter and collaborator with Sid Tepper, with whom he wrote over 300 songs, including “Red Roses For A Blue Lady” for Vaughn Monroe (#4, 1948), “The Young Ones” for Cliff Richard (UK #1, 1962) and over 40 for Elvis Presley, died of natural causes on 7/2/2015, age 96
1920 ● Percy Mayfield → R&B balladeer and songwriter, solo artist, “Please Send Me Someone To Love” (R&B #1, 1950), wrote “Hit The Road Jack” for Ray Charles (#1, 1961), died following a heart attack on 8/11/1984, age 63
1926 ● Joe Jones → New Orleans R&B singer, songwriter and arranger, pianist for B. B. King, solo artist, “You Talk To Much” (#3, 1960), record producer and manager for various R&B acts, including girl group The Dixie Cups, died following heart bypass surgery on 11/27/2005, age 79
1927 ● Porter Wagoner → Country-pop megastar known for his rhinestone-encrusted suits, pompadour hairdo, 16 Country Top 10 hits, including “The Carroll County Accident” (#92, Country #2, 1968) and multiple duet albums and hits with protégée Dolly Parton (“Please Don’t Stop Loving Me,” Country #1, 1974), toured and performed at the Grand Ole Opry until just before his death from lung caner on 10/28/2007, age 80
1929 ● Buck Owens / (Alvis Edgar Owens, Jr.) → Country music megastar singer, songwriter and guitarist, pioneer of the “Bakersfield sound” blending country and pop, “I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail” (#25, Country #1, 1965) and 19 other Country #1 hits, The Beatles covered his “Act Naturally” (#47, 1965), bandleader for The Buckaroos, TV host (Hee Haw), died after lengthy illnesses on 3/24/2006 , age 76
1944 ● Larry Troutman → With three of his brothers and two non-family members, co-founder, percussion and backing vocals in underrated but influential funk sextet Zapp, “More Bounce To The Ounce” (R&B #2, 1980), shot and killed his brother and bandmate Roger Troutman in an apparent murder/suicide on 4/25/1999, age 54
1945 ● Joe Rascoff / (Joseph Fishel Rascoff) → New York City accounting firm partner who left in the early 70s to manage road financial affairs for The Rolling Stones, his company later expanded to business management and tour production for The Allman Brothers Band, David Bowie, U2, Paul Simon, Sting and others and advised artists on royalty negotiations and accounting, briefly led electronic dance music producer SFX Entertainment in the 10s before retiring, died firm prostate cancer on 4/6/2017, age 71
1948 ● Ron Mael → With brother Russell Mael, keyboardist 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 ● Mark Knopfler → Frontman, lead guitar, songwriter and vocals for post-punk New Wave rock Dire Straits, “Sultans Of Swing” (#4, 1979), solo, Notting Hillbillies
1950 ● Craig Douglas / (Terence Perkins) → Early Brit pop-rock singer, “Only Sixteen” (UK #1, 1959) plus nine other UK Top 40 singles
1950 ● Kid Creole / (Thomas August Darnell Browder) → Guitarist, songwriter and frontman for multi-genre, big band-style Latin-tinged pop-rock Kid Creole & The Coconuts, “It’s A Wonderful Thing, Baby” (Dance Club #18, UK #4, 1982)
1953 ● Jerry Speiser → Drummer for Scottish-Australian Men At Work, “Down Under” (#1, UK #1, 1983), their Grammy-winning debut album, Business As Usual, was simultaneously the #1 US and UK album in January 1983, gaining them the distinction of being the only Aussie band to hold all four top spots at once
1954 ● Pat Metheny → Seventeen-time Grammy-winning jazz-rock fusion guitarist, composer and bandleader, sessions and side projects with David Bowie, Gary Burton, Chick Corea and many others
1958 ● Jürgen Dehmel → Bassist for German pop-rock band Nena, “99 Luftballons” (#2, 1984)
1961 ● Roy Hay → Guitar and vocals for New Wave synth-pop Culture Club, “Karma Chameleon” (#1, 1984) plus seven other UK top 10 singles
1963 ● Sir Mix-A-Lot / (Anthony Ray) → Hip hop MC, producer and rapper, “Baby Got Back” (#1, 1992) which one a Grammy for Best Rap Performance
1968 ● Paul Tucker → Keyboards for Brit R&B/Northern soul duo Lighthouse Family,”Lifted” (UK #4, 1996) and 9 other UK Top 40 hits
1969 ● Tanita Tikaram → Brit folk-pop singer and songwriter, “Twist In My Sobriety” (Modern Rock #25, UK #22, 1988)

August 13
1921 ● Jimmy McCracklin / (James David Walker, Jr.) → West Coast blues pianist and songwriter with a seven decade recording and performing career and hundreds of songs and over 30 albums, best known for his blues/dance “The Walk” (#7, R&B #5, 1958), died from natural causes on 12/20/2012, age 91
1930 ● Don Ho / (Donald Tai Loy Ho) → Air Force fighter pilot turned iconic Hawaiian pop/island music singer and entertainer with the signature song, “Tiny Bubbles” (#57, 1966), appeared in Honolulu and Vegas nightclubs over a 50-year career, guested on 70s TV sitcoms and briefly hosted his own program, suffered from coronary problems for many years but continued to perform until just before his death from heart failure on 4/14/2007, age 76
1938 ● Baby Cortez / (David Cortez Clowney) → Pop and R&B organist with two Top 10 instrumentals, “The Happy Organ” (#1, 1959), the first instrumental #1 and the first major pop hit to feature an electric organ, and “Rinky Dink” (#10, 1962), faded from view by the late 60s
1939 ● Howard Tate → R&B/soul singer and songwriter with several minor chart hits, including “Ain’t Nobody Home” (#63, R&B #12, 1966) but best known for penning “Get It While You Can” by Janis Joplin (#78, 1971), died from leukemia on 12/2/2011, age 72
1940 ● John Stokes / (Sean James Stokes) → With brothers Con and Dec Cluskey, founding member, vocals, bass guitar and harmonica in Irish beat pop-rock trio The Bachelors, “Diane” (#10, UK #1, 1964) and seven other UK Top 10 hits in 1964-66, following a split in 1984 formed pop-rock Stokes & Coe
1947 ● David Ivor St. Hubbins → Fictional character (lead singer and rhythm guitarist) played by Michael McKean in the “mock-rock” parody band Spinal Tap from the movie This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
1948 ● Tony Santini / (Scott Powell) → Vocals with “greaser” revival parody rock-and-doo-wop Sha Na Na (“(Just Like) Romeo And Juliet,” #55, 1975), TV actor, physician
1949 ● Cliff Fish → Original bassist for pop/rock one hit wonder Paper Lace, “The Night Chicago Died” (#1, UK #3, 1974), a second single “Billy, Don’t Be A Hero” (#96, UK #1, 1974) qualifies them as a two hit wonder in the UK
1949 ● Jonathan Arendt → Bassist for pop/rock one hit wonder Paper Lace, “The Night Chicago Died” (#1, UK #3, 1974), a second single “Billy, Don’t Be A Hero” (#96, UK #1, 1974) qualifies them as a two hit wonder in the UK
1951 ● Dan Fogelberg → Quintessential 70s-80s country-pop-rock singer/songwriter, “Part Of The Plan” (#31, 1975) and “Leader Of The Band” (#9, Adult Contemporary #1, 1982), political and environmental activist, died from prostate cancer on 12/16/2007, age 56
1952 ● Hughie Thomasson / (Hugh Edward Thomasson) → Founding member, lead singer and guitarist for Southern hard rock Outlaws (“Hurry Sundown,” #34, 1975), disbanded the group in 1996 and joined raunchy Southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd (“Sweet Home Alabama,” #8, 1974), reformed Outlaws in 2005 and toured until dying in his sleep from a heart attack on 9/9/2007, age 55
1958 ● Feargal Sharkey → Guitarist for Irish punk/New Wave pop-rock The Undertones, “My Perfect Cousin” (UK #9, 1980), solo, “A Good Heart” (#74, UK #1, 1985)
1959 ● Danny Bonaduce → Vocals and bass guitar in the pre-fab TV show sunshine pop group The Partridge Family, “I Think I Love You” (#1, 1970), producer, reality TV show host and panelist
1959 ● Mark Nevin → Vocals and songwriter for Brit neo-skiffle pop Fairground Attraction, “Perfect” (#80, UK #1, 1988)
1959 ● Michael Bradley → Bassist for Irish punk/New Wave pop-rock The Undertones, “My Perfect Cousin” (UK #9, 1980)
1964 ● Ian Haugland / (Håkan Jan Haugland) → Drummer for Swedish hard rock/glam-metal Europe, “The Final Countdown” (#8, 1986)
1984 ● “Baby Blue” Smith / (Diamond Blue Smith) → Vocals for Miami-based R&B/hip-hop quartet Pretty Ricky, “Grind With Me” (#7, 2005)
1984 ● James Morrison / (James Morrison Catchpole) → Award-winning Brit soul-pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “You Give Me Something” (UK #5, 2006) from his first album Undiscovered, which debuted at #1 on the UK albums chart

August 14
1915 ● Alyce King / (Alice Golda Driggs Clarke) → Vocalist for complex and sophisticated four-part harmony 30s, 40s and 50s Big Band/pop sibling singing group The King Sisters, “The Hut-Sut Song” (Top 30, 1944), recorded with her sisters on hundreds of albums and numerous radio specials over three decades and in the musical-variety TV program The King Family Show (1966-1969) and holiday specials thereafter, died from respiratory problems on 8/23/1996, age 81
1924 ● Lee Adams → Musical theater lyricist best known for his collaborations with Charles Strouse, including Tony-winners Bye Bye Birdie (1960) and Applause (1970), and co-writing the opening theme to the 70s TV sitcom All In The Family (“Those Were The Days”)
1926 ● Buddy Greco / (Armando Joseph Greco) → Jazz-pop pianist and Las Vegas lounge singer, member of Benny Goodman‘s band in the mid-40s and Frank Sinatra‘s “Rat Pack” in the 60s, enjoyed a long and prolific solo career, covered “Mr. Lonely” (#64, 1962) and issued over 60 albums and 100 singles, performed into the 00s and died on 1/10/2017, age 90
1940 ● Dash Crofts / (Darrell Crofts) → Guitar, mandolin, vocals and songwriting for 70s light pop-rock duo Seals & Crofts, “Summer Breeze” (#6, 1972) and “Diamond Girl” (#6, 1973)
1941 ● Connie Smith / (Constance June Meador) → Hugely popular 60s and 70s female country artist with 20 singles in the Country 10 and three #1 albums but extremely limited recognition on the mainstream pop side (“Once A Day” (#101, Country #1, 1964) was her first overall single and her highest charting song on the Billboard Hot 100), continues to persevere as a gospel singer in the 10s
1941 ● David Crosby → Guitarist, singer, songwriter and founding member of seminal folk-country-rock The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man” (#1, 1965) and folk-pop Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, “Just A Song Before I Go” (#7, 1977), collaborated with Graham Nash, “Immigration Man” (#36, 1972), then solo career with albums including Wind On The Water (#6, 1975) and singles including “Drive My Car” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1989)
1941 ● Lionel Morton → Vocals and rhythm guitar for early 60s Brit pop The Four Pennies, “Juliet” (UK #1, 1964), the most important British Invasion era act with no chart presence in the US
1946 ● Larry Graham → Bassist for R&B/soul-funk Sly & The Family Stone, “Family Affair” (#1, 1971), then founder/frontman funk band Graham Central Station
1947 ● Maddy Prior / (Madelaine Edith Prior) → Lead vocals for Brit electric folk-rock revival band Steeleye Span, “All Around My Hat” (UK #5, 1975)
1948 ● Bruce Thomas → Bassist for Elvis Costello‘s backing band The Attractions, “Pump It Up” (UK #24, 1978), session work and author
1951 ● Slim Dunlap / (Bob Dunlap) → Lead guitar for garage punk then alt rock pioneers The Replacements, “I’ll Be You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1989), solo
1956 ● Sharon Bryant → Lead vocals for R&B/soul urban contemporary Atlantic Starr, “When Love Calls” (R&B #5, 1979), solo, sessions
1960 ● Sarah Brightman → Brit classical-pop-Broadway crossover singer and actress, dancer and vocals for disco Hot Gossip “I Lost My Heart To A Starship Trooper” (UK #6, 1978), played Jemima in Cats (1981) and Christine Daaé in Phantom Of The Opera (1986), solo, “Harem” (Dance/Club #1, 2003)
1963 ● Jez Willis → Partner/producer in Brit dance-pop duo Utah Saints, “Something Good” (UK #4, 1992)
1965 ● Mark Collins → Guitarist for “Madchester” alt rock The Charlatans UK, “The Only One I Know” (Mainstream Rock #37, 1991) and three UK #1 albums
1970 ● Kevin Cadogan → Lead guitar for post-grunge indie pop Third Eye Blind, “Semi-Charmed Life” (#4, 1997)
1974 ● Ana Matronic / (Ana Lynch) → Vocals and frontwoman for dance-glam-rock Scissor Sisters, “Filthy Gorgeous” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)
1977 ● Ed Harcourt → Multi-instrumentalist Brit chamber pop singer/songwriter, “All Of Your Days Will Be Blessed” (UK #35, 2003)

August 15
1896 ● Léon Theremin / (Lev Sergeyevich Termen) → Russian inventor of the theremin, one of the first electronic musical instruments and which he debuted with the New York Philharmonic in 1928, died of natural causes on 11/3/1993, age 97
1909 ● Hugo Winterhalter → Orchestral-pop and easy listening arranger with 40 years of credits on Broadway, in films, on TV, and on the Billboard Hot 100, including “Canadian Sunset” (#2, R&B #7, 1956), died from cancer on 9/17/1973, age 64
1911 ● Buster Brown → Rustic R&B/blues singer and harmonica player whose biggest of three hits, “Fannie Mae” (#38, R&B #1, 1960) came when he was 50 year old, died 1/31/1976, age 64
1925 ● Bill Pinkney → Co-founder and first tenor for R&B/soul-doo wop The Drifters, “Up On The Roof” (#5, 1963), was the last surviving member of the group’s original lineup when he died after a heart attack on 7/4/2007, age 81
1930 ● Jackie Brenston → Tenor saxophonist and one hit wonder singer with a legitimate claim to the first rock ‘n’ roll record, “Rocket 88” (R&B #1, 1951), recorded at Sun Studios in Memphis with Ike Turner‘s Kings Of Rhythm as the backing band (credited as the Delta Cats), saw no further chart action and became a session musician and later a truck driver, died following an alcoholism-induced heart attack on 12/15/2007, age 49
1932 ● Johnny Thunder / (Gil Hamilton) → Session backing singer and one hit wonder novelty R&B/soul and pop soloist, “Loop De Loop” (#4, R&B #6, 1963), continued to record through the 60s with no further success, still tours on the oldies circuit
1933 ● Floyd Ashton → Vocals for R&B/soul The Tams, “What Kind Of Fool (Do You Think I Am)” (#9, 1963)
1933 ● Bobby Helms → Country-pop crossover singer with seven Country Top 40 and Five Pop Top 40, but best known as the first to record “Jingle Bell Rock” (#6, Country #13, 1957), the holiday standard since recorded by thousands of artists and now heard millions of times each year, died from emphysema on 6/19/1997, age 63
1933 ● Mike Seeger → Half-brother of folk legend Pete Seeger, award-winning folk musician and important music historian, co-founding member of influential folk revival/string band the New Lost City Ramblers and later the Strange Creek Singers, issued two dozen solo albums and produced dozens of documentary recordings of traditional American music, died from cancer on 8/7/2009, age 75
1934 ● Bobby Howard Byrd → Singer, songwriter and frontman for The Flames, which became James Brown‘s backing band The Famous Flames, later scored a handful of minor R&B and crossover hits as a solo artist, including “I Need Help (I Can’t Do It Alone) Pt. 1” (#69, R&B #14, 1970), just a few months after performing at Brown‘s memorial service died of cancer on 9/12/2007, age 73
1938 ● Shan Palmer / (Sheila Palmer) → Vocals for English pop trio The Kaye Sisters, “Ivory Tower” (UK #20, 1956)
1938 ● Stix Hooper / (Nesbert Hooper) → Jazz-fusion drummer with The Jazz Crusaders (The Crusaders after 1971), “Street Life” (#36, 1979), solo, sessions
1941 ● Don Rich → Country guitarist and pioneer of the “Bakersfield sound” of electrified country and pop crafted during his years as right-hand man to superstar Buck Owens (“I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail” (#25, Country #1, 1965 and 19 other Country #1 hits), played with Owens‘s backing band The Buckaroos and issued several solo albums, died in a motorcycle accident on 7/17/1974, age 32
1942 ● Eddie Phillips → Guitarist for underappreciated and little known (except in Germany) Britbeat/power pop The Creation, “Painter Man” (UK #36, GER #8, 1967)
1942 ● Peter York → Drummer for Brit pop-rock Spencer Davis Group, “Gimme Some Lovin”” (#7, 1967), then Eric Clapton‘s short lived Powerhouse, solo, organized the “Superdrumming” series of shows with different bandmembers
1946 ● Jimmy Webb → Grammy-winning professional rock composer and lyricist, wrote “Up Up and Away” for The 5th Dimension (#7, 1967), “MacArthur Park” for Richard Harris (#2, 1968), “Galveston” for Glen Campbell (#4, 1969), producer and film score arranger
1948 ● Kate Taylor → Folk-rockabilly singer/songwriter and guitarist, covered “It’s In His Kiss (The Shoop Shoop Song)” (#49, 1977), sister of folk-pop legend James Taylor
1950 ● Joey Spampinato → Founding member, bassist, vocals and songwriting for 40-year cult roots rock bar band NRBQ (New Rhythm And Blues Quintet)
1950 ● Tom Aldrich → Journeyman rock drummer for Southern raunch-rock Black Oak Arkansas, “Jim Dandy To The Rescue” (Top 30, 1973), then bluesy hard rock The Pat Travers Band, “New Age Music” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1981), later with Ozzy Osbourne, Gary Moore, Whitesnake and others
1951 ● Bobby Caldwell → Smooth, jazzy blue-eyed soul singer with multiple Top 100 hits, including “What You Won’t Do For Love” (#9, R&B #6, 1979), moved to a Big Band sound in the 90s and continues tour and record into the 10s
1961 ● Matt Johnson → Founder, frontman, vocals, songwriter and only constant member of eclectic alt pop-dance-rock The The, “Dogs Of Lust” (Modern Rock #2, 1993), solo
1962 ● Marcia Schofield → Keyboards from 1987-90 for 35+ year punk and post-punk The Fall, “There’s A Ghost In My House” (UK #30, 1987), left for a career as a palliative care doctor
1972 ● Mikey Graham / (Michael Graham) → Vocals for Irish teen-pop boy band Boyzone, “No Matter What” (Adult Contemporary #12, 1999)
1972 ● Tim Foreman → Bassist for Grammy-winning alt rock/Christian rock Switchfoot, “Meant To Live” (#18, Modern Rock #5, 2004)
1984 ● David Welsh → Lead guitar for mainstream/piano rock The Fray, “How To Save A Life” (#3, 2006)
1984 ● Ted Dwane → Bassist for Grammy-winning Brit folk-rock Mumford & Sons, “I Will Wait” (#12, Alt Rock #1, 2012)
1989 ● Joe Jonas → Lead singer with brothers Nick and Kevin in pre-fab Disney Channel teen-pop ballad trio the Jonas Brothers, “Burnin’ Up” (#5, 2008)

August 16
1915 ● Al Hibbler → Baritone jazz-pop-R&B singer, first with Duke Ellington‘s orchestra in the 40s, “Do Nothin’ Til You Here From Me” (#6, 1944), then solo, “Unchained Melody” (#3, 1955), died 4/24/2001, age 85
1922 ● Ernie Freeman / (Ernest Aaron Freeman) → Pop and early rock ‘n’ roll bandleader, pianist and session musician, worked on hits by The Platters (“The Great Pretender,” #1, 1956), Dean Martin (“Everybody Loves Somebody,” #1, 1964), Frank Sinatra (“That’s Life,” #4, 1966) and others, wrote film scores and served as musical director at Reprise Records, died at home from a heart attack on 5/16/1981, age 58
1923 ● Johnny Reed → Founding member, bass vocals and double bass for doo wop and “bird group” trendsetting R&B vocal group The Orioles (“Crying In The Chapel,” #11, R&B #1, 1953) last surviving original member of the group when he died on 6/18/2005, age 81
1923 ● Eddie Kirkland → Electric blues guitarist, singer and songwriter known as the “Gypsy of the Blues” for his rigorous touring schedule, released over 30 albums on various labels and toured with John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, English blues-rock band Foghat and others, continued to record, write and tour until his death in a car accident on 2/27/2011, age 87
1931 ● Eydie Gormé / (Edith Gormezano) → Broadway and TV actress, nightclub and Vegas showroom entertainer, Grammy-winning traditional pop singer, “Blame It On The Bossa Nova” (#7, 1963), wife and singing partner of crooner Steve Lawrence, died from undisclosed causes on 8/10/2013, age 82
1934 ● Ketty Lester / (Revoyda Frierson) → One hit wonder pop singer and actress with the crossover cover of “Love Letters” (#5, R&B #2, UK #5, 1962), shifted to a more-R&B style in the late 60s with little commercial success, turned to acting in the 70s and appeared in movies and on TV in various roles
1942 ● Barbara George → One hit wonder New Orleans R&B singer with her self-penned crossover hit, “I Know (You Don’t Love Me No More)” (#3, 1961), died from a lung infection on 8/10/2006, age 63
1942 ● Squirrel Lester / (Robert Lester) → Tenor vocals for smooth R&B/Chicago soul The Chi-Lites, “Have You Seen Her?” (#3, 1971), died from liver cancer 1/21/2010, age 67
1945 ● Gary Loizzo → Guitar/vocals and founder, pop-rock one hit wonder American Breed, “Bend Me Shape Me” (Top 10, 1968)
1945 ● Kevin Ayers → Eccentric singer/songwriter and original bassist for Canterbury-scene psych-art-jazz-prog rock fusion Soft Machine, switched to guitar and solo in 1969, has issued more than a dozen albums over 40 years
1946 ● Snowy Fleet / (Gordon Fleet) → Drummer for Aussie-based 60s pop-rock The Easybeats, “Friday On My Mind” (#16, 1967)
1948 ● Barry Hay → Lead vocals and frontman for Dutch hard rock Golden Earring, “Radar Love” (#13, 1974), over 40 hits and 30 gold and platinum albums in the Netherlands
1949 ● Sputnik Spooner / (William Spooner) → Guitarist and founder of camp-rock pop-rock satirists The Tubes, “She’s A Beauty” (#10, 1978), solo
1949 ● Rock Action Asheton / (Scott Asheton) → Drummer for hard rock/proto-punk The Stooges, “I Wanna Be Your Dog” (1969), sessions, died from a heart attack on 3/15/2014, age 64
1953 ● J. T. Taylor / (James Taylor) → Lead singer for jazz-fusion then R&B/funk Kool & The Gang, “Celebration” (#1, 1981), left in 1988 for a largely unsuccessful solo career
1957 ● Tim Farriss → Guitarist for Aussie New Wave dance-groove-pop INXS, “Need You Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1958 ● Madonna / (Madonna Louise Victoria Ciccone) → Film actress, record producer, entrepreneur and dance-pop megastar, “Like A Virgin” (#1, 1984), best selling female rock artist of the 20th century and second (behind Barbra Streisand) top selling US female artist of all time
1960 ● Chris Pedersen → Drummer for eclectic alt rock pop-ska-punk-folk fusion Camper Van Beethoven, “Take The Skinheads Bowling” (1985)
1964 ● Matt Lukin → Bassist for grunge rock Mudhoney, “Suck You Dry” (Modern Rock #23, 1992)
1967 ● MC Remedee / (Debbie Pryce) → Vocals in female rap/house music duo Cookie Crew, “Rok Da House” (UK #5, 1988)
1972 ● Emily Burns Strayer / (Emily Burns Erwin Robison Strayer) → Multi-instrumentalist singer, songwriter and founding member of country-rock girl group Dixie Chicks, “Not Ready To Make Nice” (#4, 2006), formed Court Yard Hounds in 2010 with sister and former Dixie Chicks bandmate Martie Erwin Maguire
1980 ● Bob Hardy → Bassist for Scottish art-pop-rock Franz Ferdinand, “Take Me Out” (Alt Rock #3, 2004)
1980 ● Vanessa Lee Carlton → One hit wonder “new era” female pop-rock singer/songwriter, “A Thousand Miles” (#5, 2002)

August 17
1919 ● Georgia Gibbs / (Frieda Lipschitz) → Jazz-pop and R&B vocalist, first as a radio show singer and later as a widely popular 50s novelty pop artist, covered and bested LaVern Baker‘s “Tweedlee Dee” (#2, 1955), died of leukemia on 12/9/2006, age 87
1933 ● Mark Dinning / (Max Dinning) → One hit wonder pop singer, “Teen Angel” (#1, 1959), died from an alcoholism-related heart attack on 3/22/1986, age 52
1939 ● Ed Saunders → Poet, social activist, environmentalist and bandleader for 60s underground rock The Fugs, author of numerous books including The Family (1971) about Charles Manson and the Tate-LaBianca murders and a nine-volume collection America: A History In Verse (started in 1998)
1939 ● Luther Allison → Distinctive Chicago electric blues guitarist and songwriter with a remarkable career upsurge after signing with Alligator Records in 1994 and returning to the U.S. from France after a 20-year trip abroad, issued two Top 20 Blues albums before being diagnosed with a malignant lung tumor and dying a month later on 8/12/1997, age 57
1942 ● Tommy West / (Thomas Picardo) → Singer/songwriter, producer, and one half of the pop rock songwriting duo and folk-pop group Cashman & West, “American City Suite” (#27, 1972), produced albums for Jim Croce, Mary Travers, Henry Gross and others
1944 ● The Chief Seiter / (John Seiter) → Drums and vocals for folk-sunshine-pop Spanky & Our Gang, “Someday Will Never Be The Same” (#9, 1967)
1944 ● Baby Huey / (James Ramey) → Corpulent rock and soul singer, songwriter and frontman for Baby Huey & The Babysitters whose lone album for Curtis Mayfield‘s Custom label, The Baby Huey Story: The Living Legend (1971) was released posthumously and is considered an early forerunner of hip hop music and a period classic, died from a weight and drug-induced heart attack on 10/28/1970, age 26
1946 ● Drake Levin / (Drake Levinshefski) → Lead guitar and backing vocals for hard-edged rock ‘n roll Paul Revere & The Raiders, “Just Like Me” (#11, 1965) and 14 other Top 30 hits, joined the band at age 16 for their prime hit-making years, left in 1967 in a dispute with bandleader Paul Revere (Dick) and formed power trio Brotherhood with two former Raiders, did session work and performed in Raiderss reunion tours until his death from cancer on 7/4/2009, age 62
1947 ● Gary Talley → Guitar for short-lived blue-eyed soul The Box Tops, “The Letter” (#1, 1967), then session work in Nashville, Memphis and Atlanta
1949 ● Sib Hashian / (John Hashian) → Drummer for 70s-80s arena rock Boston, “More Than A Feeling” (#5, 1976), after leaving the band sued leader Tom Scholz for back royalties and settled out of court
1950 ● Greg Arama → Bassist for Chicago-area garage rock The Gang, which became one hit wonder for psych-rock Amboy Dukes, “Journey To The Centre Of The Mind” (#16, 1968), died in a motorcycle accident on 9/18/1979, age 29
1953 ● Kevin Rowland → Vocals for New Wave pop-rock Dexys Midnight Runners, “Come On Eileen” (#1, 1983), solo career after the band broke up in 1987, reformed in 2003
1955 ● Colin Moulding → Bassist for quirky New Wave synth-pop XTC, “Making Plans For Nigel” (UK #17, 1979) and side project for the band under the pseudonym The Dukes Of Stratosphear
1958 ● Belinda Carlisle → Co-founder and lead vocals for New Wave pop-punk girl group The Go-Go’s, “We Got The Beat”, (#2, 1982), the most successful all-female pop and rock band of all time and the only one to play their own instruments and write their own songs, started a solo career following The Go-Go’s breakup, “Heaven Is A Place On Earth” (#1, 1987), wrote autobiography Lips Unsealed (2010) which reached #27 on the New York Times bestseller list
1962 ● Gilby Clarke / (Gilbert Clarke) → Rhythm guitarist, replaced Izzy Stradlin in 1991 as lead guitar for hard rock Guns N’ Roses, “November Rain” (#3, 1992), left in 1994 for solo career and sessions with Slash’s Snakepit, Heart, MC5 and others
1964 ● Maria McKee → Co-founder and lead vocals for roots rock Lone Justice, “Shelter” (#47, Mainstream Rock #26, 1986), dissolved the band in favor of a solo career, “Show Me Heaven” (Adult Contemporary #28, UK #1, 1990) plus sessions
1965 ● Deen Castronovo → Journeyman rock drummer and session musician, worked with Bad English, Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Social Distortion and many others before joining arena rock Journey as the band’s current drummer and backing vocalist (thru 2013)
1965 ● Steve Gorman → Drummer for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1966 ● Jill Cunniff → Bassist and vocals for all-girl alt rock/hip hop Luscious Jackson, “Naked Eye” (#36, 1996)
1969 ● Donnie Wahlberg → Vocals for early 90s teen-pop boy band New Kids On The Block, “Step By Step” (#1, 1990), TV and film actor, brother of NKOTB bandmate and fellow actor Mark Wahlberg
1969 ● Posdnuos / (Kelvin Mercer) → MC and vocals for jazz rap and alt hip hop trio De La Soul, “Me Myself And I” (R&B #1, 1989)
1977 ● Claire Richards → Vocals and dance routines for pre-fab Brit dance-pop group The Steps, “5, 6, 7, 8” (UK #14, 1997)
1979 ● Mike Lewis → Guitarist for Welsh alt hard rock Lostprophets, “Last Train Home” (Mainstream Rock #10, 2004)

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This Week’s Birthdays (July 28 – August 3)

Happy Birthday this week to:

July 28
1901 ● Rudy Vallée / (Hubert Prior Vallée ) → Hugely popular 1930s crooner and vaudeville entertainer, often singing through a megaphone, “Stein Song” (The University Of Maine)” (#1, 1930), became a film, radio stage and TV performer in the 50s, 60s and 70s, died from cancer on 7/3/1986, age 84
1915 ● Frankie Yankovic → The “King of Polka,” Grammy-winning and hugely popular Slovenian-American polka musician, composer, radio DJ, TV host and bandleader with over 200 albums in a five decade recording and performing career, died from heart failure on 10/14/1998, age 83
1935 ● Simon Dee / (Cyril Nicholas Henty-Dodd) → British TV personality and radio DJ, twice-weekly BBC TV chat show Dee Time during the 60s with musical guests including Jimi Hendrix and Lulu, died of bone cancer on 8/29/2009, age 74
1938 ● George Cummings → Steel guitar for AM pop-rock Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, “Sylvia’s Mother” (#5, 1972) plus nine other Top 40 hits
1940 ● Philip Proctor → Comedian, small-role TV actor, voice actor and member of 60s/70s eclectic, satiric, surrealistic radio-friendly comic quartet The Firesign Theatre, the group’s nearly 40 albums were cult hits, particluarly for college audiences, lent his voice to roles in multiple cartoons, video games and movies, including Toy Story, Rugrats and PlayStation games
1943 ● Michael Bloomfield → Celebrated blues-rock guitarist for urban electric blues The Butterfield Blues Band, formed blues/psych rock/jazz fusion Electric Flag in 1967, played with Al Kooper and Stephen Stills on the remarkable Super Session album, solo and multiple collaborations, #22 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time, died of a heroin overdose on 2/15/1981, age 37
1943 ● Richard Wright → Founding member, keyboards, vocals and songwriter for of space rock Pink Floyd, “Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)” (#1, 1979), dismissed from the band by frontman Roger Waters in 1980 but returned after Waters left in 1987, solo, died of cancer on 9/15/2008, age 65
1946 ● Jonathan Edwards → Light folk-rock and country-pop one hit wonder singer/songwriter, “Sunshine” (#4, 1971)
1948 ● Jerry Casale / (Gerald Casale) → Founding member, bassist, synthesizer player, video director and “chief strategist” for quirky 80s pop-rock Devo, “Whip It” (#14, 1980), also produced videos for The Cars, Rush, Foo Fighters, Soundgarden and others, directed TV commercials for Diet Coke, Miller Lite, Honda and others
1949 ● Simon Kirke → Drummer for proto-metal/hard rock Free, “All Right Now” (#4, 1970) and hard rock Bad Company, “Can’t Get Enough” (#5, 1974), session work for Jim Capaldi, Ringo Starr, Ron Wood and many others
1949 ● Steve Peregrine Took → Founding partner, bass and percussion for psych rock Tyrannosaurus Rex, was fired for drug abuse and bizarre behavior shortly before former partner Marc Bolan and the band hit it big as proto-glam rock T. Rex, “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” (#10, 1971), died after choking on a cocktail cherry on 10/27/1980, age 31
1949 ● Peter Doyle → Guitar and vocals for folk-sunshine pop The New Seekers, “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing” (#7, 1972), died 10/13/2001, age 52
1954 ● Steven J. Morse → Canadian rock and jazz-rock fusion guitarist, founder of acclaimed Southern instrumental rock fusion band Dixie Dregs, issued several solo albums, divided time between hard rock Kansas and hard rock Deep Purple from 1994-2009
1962 ● Rachel Sweet → Teenage rock ‘n’ roll singer who signed to Stiff Records at age 18, “Everlasting Love” (#32, 1981), issued several other singles and became a TV host
1965 ● Nick Banks → Drummer for alt rock/Britpop Pulp, “Common People” (UK #2, 1995)
1972 ● Dan Warton → Drummer for indie punk-rock Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, “Not Sleeping Around” (Modern Rock #1, 1992)
1980 ● Noel Sullivan → Singer for pre-fab mockstar dance-pop Hear’Say, “Pure And Simple” (UK #1, 2001), refocused on musical theater following the group’s disbandment in 2003
1986 ● Jaoby Dakota Shaddix → Lead singer for hard rock/heavy metal Papa Roach, “Scars” (#15, Mainstream Rock #4, 2005)
1990 ● Soulja Boy / (DeAndre Cortez Way) → Rapper, “Crank That (Soulja Boy)” (#1, 2007), record producer

July 29
1916 ● Charlie Christian / (Charles Henry Christian) → Swing, bebop and cool jazz guitarist in the 30s and 40s, early and very important guitarist who influenced the development of the electric guitar as a solo instrument, played with Benny Goodman, Thelonius Monk, Dizzy Gillespie and others, died from tuberculosis on 3/2/1942, age 25
1918 ● Frank Miller → Guitar and vocals in influential but unheralded 50s folk trio The Easy Riders, co-wrote their big hit, the oft-covered “Marianne” (#3, 1957) and continued to write and record as a solo artist and in groups with other folk luminaires until retirement in the late 60s
1923 ● Jim Marshall / (James Charles Marshall) → The “Father of Loud” and pioneer of guitar amplification with iconic products used by Eric Clapton, Pete Townshend, Jimmy Page and countless others from garage bands to superstars, often in a “Marshall stack” or wall of black, vinyl-clad cabinets mounted one atop the other, founded and led his company, Marshall Amplification well into his eighties, now considered one of the four major contributors to the development of rock music equipment along with Leo Fender, Les Paul and Seth Lover, died from cancer on 4/5/2012, age 88
1930 ● Jim Stewart → Part-time country music fiddler who co-founded Stax Records in Memphis with his sister, Estelle Axton, and recorded and published some of the top Southern soul and Memphis soul acts of the 60s and 70s, including house band Booker T. & The MG’s, Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, Sam & Dave, Staple Singers and many others
1933 ● Randy Sparks / (Lloyd A. Sparks) → Folk and pop musician and founder of iconic folk revival band The New Christy Minstrels (“Green, Green,” #14, AC #3, 1963), the group had 12 charting albums in the 60s, including the Grammy-winning Introducing The New Christy Minstrels (#19, 1962), still leads and performs with the band into the 10s
1938 ● Marvin Ingram / (Marvin Inabnett) → Founding member and high tenor singer for clean-cut light pop vocal quartet The Four Preps, “26 Miles (Santa Catalina)” (#2, 1958) and 6 other Top 40 hits between 1958 and 1961, left the group in 1966 and died on 3/7/1999, age 60
1946 ● Neal Doughty → Co-founder, songwriter, keyboards and only constant member of arena rock REO Speedwagon, “Keep On Lovin’ You” (#1, 1980)
1947 ● Carlo Santanna → Guitar for pop/rock one hit wonder Paper Lace, “The Night Chicago Died” (#1, UK #3, 1974), a second single “Billy, Don’t Be A Hero” (#96, UK #1, 1974) qualifies them as a two hit wonder in the UK
1953 ● Geddy Lee / (Gary Lee Weinrib) → Bassist, lead vocals and founding member of Canadian arena rock/power trio Rush, “New World Man” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1982) and 24 other Mainstream Rock Top 20 singles
1953 ● Patty Scialfa / (Vivienne Patricia Scialfa) → Backing vocals for Bruce Springsteen‘s E Street Band, solo, wife of The Boss since 6/8/1991
1959 ● John Sykes → Guitarist for Irish hard rock Thin Lizzy (1982-83), then hard rock Whitesnake, “Here I Go Again” (#1, 1987), then formed hard rock Blue Murder, solo
1962 ● Martin McCarrick → Guitar for Irish grunge rock/alt metal Therapy?, “Screamager” (, 1993)
1966 ● Martina McBride / (Martina Mariea Schiff) → Grammy-winning country/country-pop singer and songwriter known as the “Celine Dion of Country Music, charted twenty Country Top 10, seven Top 40 and five Adult Contemporary hits through 2016, including “I Love You” (#24, Country #1, AC #1, 1999)
1966 ● Miles Hunt → Frontman, guitar and vocals for alt rock The Wonder Stuff, “Welcome To The Cheap Seats” (Modern Rock #28, UK #8, 1992), TV host
1967 ● Chris Gorman → Drummer for alt pop-rock Belly, “Feed The Tree” (#1, Modern Rock, 1993), now a commercial photographer
1972 ● Simon Jones → Bassist for neo-psych-pop The Verve, “Bittersweet Symphony” (#12, 1998)
1973 ● Wanya Jermaine Morris → Lead vocals for R&B/urban soul a cappella Boyz II Men, “End Of The Road” (#1, 1992)
1977 ● Danger Mouse / (Brian Joseph Burton) → Multi-instrumentalist musician, Grammy-winning producer and songwriter, released the mashup album The Grey Album in 2004 combining The BeatlesWhite Album (1968) with rapper Jay-Z‘s The Black Album (2003), co-founded alt. neo-soul Gnarls Barkley, “Crazy” (#2, 2006), produced albums for Gorillaz, Beck, The Black Keys and U2

July 30
1926 ● Christine McGuire → Vocals for immensely popular sibling singing trio the McGuire Sisters, “Sugartime” (#1, 1958)
1936 ● Buddy Guy / (George Guy) → Pioneering and highly influential Chicago blues guitarist and singer, “Stone Crazy” (R&B #12, 1962), #30 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time
1938 ● Kookie Byrnes / (Edward Byrne Breitenberger) → TV actor (played the character Gerald Lloyd Kookson III on 77 Sunset Strip) and one hit wonder novelty-pop singer, “Kookie, Kookie, Lend Me Your Comb” (#4, 1959), a take-off from his character’s constant combing of his pompadour
1940 ● Big Jack Johnson / (Jack N. Johnson) → Contemporary Delta blues guitarist, songwriter and bandleader with a dozen critically acclaimed electric blues albums, many with social activism themes, died from an undisclosed illness on 3/14/2001, age 60
1941 ● Paul Anka → Canadian-born teen idol/contemporary pop/easy listening crooner and songwriter, “Lonely Boy” (#1, 1959), wrote the theme for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and Tom Jones‘ “She’s A Lady” (#2, 1971) and the lyrics to Frank Sinatra‘s “My Way” (#11, 1969)
1944 ● Chris Darrow → Highly-skilled and sought-after multi-instrumentalist L.A. session musician, co-founded 60s American eclectic folk-rock cult band Kaleidoscope, replaced Jackson Browne in country-rock the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (“Mr. Bojangles,” #9, 1971), worked in Linda Ronstadt‘s backing band, recorded several solo albums and did studio work for James Taylor, Helen Reddy and many others, continues to record and produce folk- and country-rock music into the 10s
1945 ● David Sanborn → Influential jazz-pop saxophonist with the blues-rock The Butterfield Blues Band, jazz-rock fusion The Brecker Brothers, “Sneakin’ Up Behind You” (#58, Disco #3, 1975), Grammy-winning solo career, “Bang Bang” (#53, Adult Contemporary #23, 1992), session work for David Bowie, James Taylor, Stevie Wonder and others
1946 ● Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond → Early bass guitarist for long-lived Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973), left the band in 1975 to return to his avocation, painting, but made several appearances with the band over the decades
1949 ● Hugh Nicholson → Guitarist and songwriter for Scottish freakbeat/psych-pop The Poets, “She Blew A Good Thing” (#45, R&B #2, 1966), then Scottish pop-rock Marmalade, “Reflections Of My Life” (#10, 1970) and pop-rock Blue, “Gonna Capture Your Heart” (#88, UK #18, 1977)
1949 ● Joyce Jones → Singer for Philly R&B/disco female vocal group First Choice, “The Player, Part 1” (R&B #7, 1974)
1956 ● Phil Fearon → Jamaican-born guitarist and singer for R&B/funk-pop Galaxy, “Dancing Tight” (1983), independent label record company executive
1957 ● David Joseph → Keyboards and lead vocals for North London-based R&B/disco-funk boy band Hi-Tension, “British Hustle” (UK #8, 1978)
1957 ● Rat Scabies / (Chris Millar) → Founding member and drummer for first-wave punk rockers The Damned, “Eloise” (UK #3, 1986), solo and collaborations
1958 ● Kate Bush / (Catherine Bush) → Hugely successful Brit alt pop-rock singer and songwriter, “Wuthering Heights” (UK #1, 1978) and “Love And Anger” (Modern Rock #1, UK #38, 1990)
1959 ● Vaughn Toulouse / (Vaughn Cotillard) → Lead vocals for New Wave ska-pop Department S, “Is Vic There?” (#67, UK #22, 1981), died from AIDS related illness on 8/22/1991, age 32
1963 ● Tex Axile / (Anthony Doughty) → Keyboards for punk-pop-dance Transvision Vamp, “Baby I Don’t Care” (, 1983)
1966 ● Jyoti Mishra → India-born frontman, composer and multi-instrumentalist for one man band, one hit wonder alt dance-pop White Town, “Your Woman” (#23, UK #1, 1997)
1968 ● Louise Wener → Vocals for Britpop Sleeper, “Sale Of The Century” (UK #10, 1996)
1968 ● Sean Moore → Drummer for Brit alt rock/neo-punk Manic Street Preachers, “The Masses Against The Classes” (UK #1, 2000)
1970 ● MC Trouble / (LaTasha Sheron Rogers) → First female rapper signed to Motown Records, issued one album and a minor hit (“(I Wanna) Make You Mine,” Rap #15, 1990), while recording her second album died in her sleep from heart failure during an epileptic seizure on 6/4/1991, age 20
1971 ● Brad Hargreaves → Drummer for post-grunge indie pop Third Eye Blind, “Semi-Charmed Life” (#4, 1997)
1977 ● Ian Watkins → Singer for Welsh alt hard rock Lostprophets, “Last Train Home” (Mainstream Rock #10, 2004)
1980 ● Seth Avett → With brother Scott, frontman and guitarist in progressive folk-rock quartet The Avett Brothers (Ain’t No Man,” AAA #1, Alt Rock #28, 2016)

July 31
1923 ● Ahmet Ertegun → Turkish immigrant who co-founded and became chief executive of Atlantic Records, a dominant force in jazz, R&B and pop/rock and a prime force in moving Black American music into the mainstream, fell and struck his head on a concrete floor backstage at a Rolling Stones benefit concert for the Clinton Foundation and died seven weeks later on 12/14/2006, age 83
1931 ● Kenny Burrell / (Kenneth Earl Burrell) → Bebop, cool jazz and electric blues guitarist with dozens of solo albums and multiple collaborations with Lena Horne, B. B. King, Maria Muldaur, Jimmy Smith and many others, currently professor and Director of Jazz Studies at UCLA‘s Herb Alpert School of Music
1932 ● Morey Carr → Vocals for novelty pop/rock ‘n’ roll The Playmates, “Beep Beep” (#4, 1958) plus 4 other Top 40 hits
1938 ● Bonnie Brown / (Bonnie Jean Brown) → Vocals for 50s-60s country-folk smooth harmony sibling trio The Browns (“The Three Bells,” #1, Country #1, 1959), retired from the music business in 1967 and died from lung cancer on 7/16/2016, age 77
1939 ● John West → Electric organ (“Cordovox”) for pop-rock Gary Lewis & The Playboys, “This Diamond Ring” (#1, 1965) plus 11 other US Top 40 hits between 1965 and 1968
1942 ● Daniel Boone / (Peter Charles Green) → Britbeat pop singer with a number of minor hits in the 60s as lead vocals for The Beachcombers and The Bruisers, or as a solo artist with the pseudonyms Peter Stirling and Lee Stirling, then became one hit wonder pop-rock singer with “Beautiful Sunday” (#15, UK #21, 1972)
1943 ● Lobo / (Roland Kent Lavoie) → Country-folk-pop singer/songwriter and guitarist with several AM Top 40 hits in the 70s, including “Me And You And A Dog Named Boo” (#5, AC #1, UK #4, 1971) and “I’d Love You To Want Ne” (#2, AC #1, UK #5, 1972), continued to tour and record into the 10s
1946 ● Gary Lewis / (Gary Harold Lee Levitch) → Frontman, drums and vocals for pop-rock Gary Lewis & The Playboys, “This Diamond Ring” (#1, 1965) plus 11 other US Top 40 hits between 1965 and 1968, son of comedian/actor Jerry Lewis
1947 ● Karl Green → Guitarist for British Invasion pop-rock Herman’s Hermits, “Mrs. Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter” (#1. 1965)
1951 ● Carlo Karges → Guitarist for German pop-rock band Nena, “99 Luftballons” (#2, 1984)
1953 ● Hugh McDowell → Cello for pop-rock Electric Light Orchestra, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (#4, 1979) and 26 other Top 40 hits
1957 ● Daniel Ash → Guitarist for seminal goth-rock Bauhaus, “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” (1979) and goth-pop Love And Rockets, “So Alive” (#3, 1989) , solo
1958 ● Bill Berry → Drummer for influential post-punk R.E.M., “The One I Love” (#9, 1987), left the band in 1997 to work his hay farm in Georgia
1960 ● Malcolm Ross → Guitarist for Scot New Wave pop-rock Aztec Camera, “The Crying Scene” (Modern Rock #3, 1990)
1963 ● Fatboy Slim / (Norman Quentin Leo Cook) → Bassist for Brit jangle-guitar pop-rock The Housemartins, “Caravan Of Love” (UK #1, 1986), DJ and remixer for electronic dance-pop Beats International, “Dub Be Good To Me” (Dance/Pop #1, 1990), founder of acid jazz Freak Power, “Turn On, Tune In, Cop Out” (UK #29, 1993), dance-pop Pizzaman and Brit-hop producer and solo artist, “The Rockafeller Skank” (#72, UK #6, 1998)
1964 ● Fuzz Townsend / (Robert Townsend) → Drummer for dance-rock Pop Will Eat Itself, “X, Y & Zee” (Modern Rock #11, 1991)
1964 ● Jim Corr → With three sisters, guitars and keyboards in Irish folk-pop-rock sibling act The Corrs, “Breathless” (Adult Top 40 #7, 2000)
1971 ● John 5 / (John Lowery) → Guitarist for industrial-pop-metal/shock rock Marilyn Manson, “The Dope Show” (Mainstream Rock #12, 1998), five solo instrumental guitar albums, sessions for Garbage, Meat Loaf, Ozzy Osbourne and Lynyrd Skynyrd
1978 ● Will Champion → Drummer for Brit-pop/anthem rock Coldplay, “Speed Of Sound” (#8, 2005)
1981 ● M. Shadows / (Matthew Sanders) → Lead vocalist and songwriter for pop/metal Avenged Sevenfold, “Bat Country” (#60, Mainstream Rock #2, 2005)

August 01
1898 ● Morris Stoloff → Violinist, composer and arranger, wrote and performed “Moonglow” (#1, 1956), the love theme from the film Picnic (1956), arranged film scores for several other movies, including Lawrence Of Arabia (1962), died 4/16/1980, age 81
1929 ● Samuel Charters → Grammy-winning music historian, record producer, musician, poet and widely published author of books on blues and jazz music, his first book, The Country Blues (1959) and accompanying album of the same name are credited with inspiring the folk music revival of the early 60s and injecting forgotten blues artists into the consciousness of dozens of blues-rock artists like The Allman Brothers Band, Cream and The Rolling Stones, died from bone marrow cancer on 3/18/2015, age 85
1930 ● Lionel Bart / (Lionel Begleiter) → Brit pop music songwriter and musical composer, best known for writing the theme song to the James Bond film From Russia With Love (1966) and the hit musical Oliver!, wrote commercial jingles and staged other musicals until his death from cancer on 4/3/1999, age 68
1931 ● Ramblin’ Jack Elliott / (Elliot Charles Adnopoz) → Influential country-folk guitarist, one time protégé of folk legend Woody Guthrie, played in Bob Dylan‘s Rolling Thunder Revue and with Pete Seeger, Jerry Garcia, Grateful Dead and others, Grammy-winning blues album A Stranger Here in 2009
1941 ● Rock Scully / (Rock Robert Scully) → San Francisco rock promoter and manager for psych/folk rock/jam band Grateful Dead (“Truckin’,” #64, 1970) from 1965 to 1985, during which he negotiated the band’s first contract with Warner Brothers and helped orchestrate the transformation from a loose folk and bluegrass outfit to one of rock music’s most memorable and enduring acts, died from lung cancer on 12/16/2014, age 73
1942 ● Jerry Garcia / (Jerome John Garcia) → Founding member, lead guitarist, vocals, songwriter and de facto frontman for rock’s longest, strangest trip Grateful Dead, “Sugar Magnolia” (#91, 1973) and “Touch Of Grey” (#9, 1987), solo and various collaborations, died from a drug-related heart attack on 8/9/1995, age 53
1946 ● Boz Burrell / (Raymond Burrell) → Bassist for prog/space-rock King Crimson, “The Court Of The Crimson King” (#80, 1970), founding member of hard rock supergroup Bad Company, “Can’t Get Enough” (#5, 1974), died following a heart attack on 9/21/2006, age 60
1947 ● Rick Anderson → Bassist for camp-rock pop-rock satirists The Tubes, “She’s A Beauty” (#10, 1978)
1947 ● Rick Coonce → Drummer for AM Top 40 pop-rockers The Grass Roots, “Midnight Confessions” (#5, 1968), left the band in 1971 and moved to Canada to become a farmer and social worker, died from heart failure on 2/25/2011, age 63
1949 ● Jim Carroll → Author, poet, punk rock bandleader, “People Who Died” (#51, 1980), wrote the autobiography The Basketball Diaries, which became a film starring Leonardo DiCaprio (1995), died from a heart attack on 9/11/2009, ager 60
1951 ● Tim Bachman → With his brothers Randy and Robbie, guitarist for Canadian hard rockers Bachman-Turner Overdrive, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” (#1, 1974), left in 1974 to pursue a music production career
1951 ● Tommy Bolin → Underrated and short-lived blues-rock guitarist, first with hard rock Zephyr, then with jazz-rock fusion drummer Billy Cobham on the classic Spectrum album, replaced Joe Walsh in the James Gang, joined Deep Purple in 1972 to replace Ritchie Blackmore, left for solo career, died of a heroin overdose on 12/4/1976, age 25
1953 ● Robert Cray → Grammy-winning contemporary blues guitarist and vocalist , “Smoking Gun” (#22, Mainstream Rock #2, 1986)
1958 ● Michael Penn → Late-80s pop/rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “No Myth” (#13, 1989), brother of actor Sean Penn
1958 ● Robert Buck → Guitarist and songwriter with folk-pop 10,000 Maniacs, “These Are Days” (Alt-Rock #1, 1992), also played in folk-pop John & Mary with other bandmates, died from liver disease on 12/19/2000, age 42
1959 ● Joe Elliott → Vocals for hard rock/Brit New Wave of Heavy Metal band Def Leppard, “Love Bites” (#1, 1988), formed hard rock Down ‘N’ Outz in 2009
1960 ● Chuck D. / (Carlton Douglas Ridenhour) → Rapper and vocals for influential early hip hop group Public Enemy, “Fight The Power” (Rap #1, 1989), author, producer
1960 ● Suzi Gardner → Guitar and vocals for all-girl post-punk/grunge band L7, “Pretend We’re Dead” (Alt Rock #8, 1992)
1963 ● Coolio / (Artis Leon Ivey, Jr.) → Musician, reality TV show actor, producer and rapper, “Gangsta’s Paradise” (#1, 1995)
1964 ● Adam Duritz → Piano, guitar, vocals, songwriting and frontman for alt-rock Counting Crows, “Mr. Jones” (Modern Rock #2, 1994), solo, producer and record company executive
1964 ● Nick Christian Sayer → Guitarist for punk-pop-dance Transvision Vamp, “Baby I Don’t Care” (, 1983)
1968 ● Dan Donegan → Guitarist for Chicago-based heavy metal Disturbed, “Another Way To Die” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2010)
1970 ● Kenwyn House → Guitar for hard-edged Brit pop Reef, “Place Your Hands” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1997) from the UK #1 album Glow
1978 ● Dhani Harrison → Guitarist and son of George Harrison, completed his father’s final album, Brainwashed, after his death in 2001, now founder, lead guitar and vocals for alt rock Thenewno2
1981 ● Ashley Angel / (Ashley Ward Parker) → Vocals for pre-fab teen idol boy-band O-Town, “All Or Nothing” (#3, 2001)

August 02
1935 ● Hank Cochran / (Garland Perry “Hank” Cochran) → Country-pop music songwriter with seven charting hits of his own in the 60s-80s but better known for penning hits for Patsy Cline (“I Fall To Pieces,” #12, AC #6, Country #1, 1961) and Eddy Arnold (“Make The World Go Away,” #6, AC #1, Country #1, 1965), and songs covered by dozens of artists, including Elvis Costello, Linda Ronstadt and Norah Jones, died from pancreatic cancer on 7/15/2010, age 75
1937 ● Garth Hudson / (Eric Garth Hudson) → Canadian organist, keyboardist and saxophonist for seminal roots rockers The Band, “Chest Fever” (1968), sessions and solo
1939 ● Edward Patten → Vocals in R&B/soul-pop family quartet Gladys Knight & The Pips, “Midnight Train To Georgia” (#1, 1973)
1941 ● Doris Coley / (Doris Coley Kenner-Jackson) → Vocals for first 60s girl-group to achieve national prominence, The Shirelles, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (#1, 1961), died of breast cancer 2/4/2000, age 58
1941 ● Andrew Steele → Drummer for Brit psych-rock band The Herd, “I Don’t Want Our Loving To Die” (UK #5, 1968), then Scottish folk-pop-rock Stealers Wheel, “Stuck In The Middle With You” (#6, 1973), died 4/18/2005, age 63
1943 ● Kathy Lennon → With her sisters, vocals in semi-religious pop vocal quartet The Lennon Sisters (“Tonight You Belong To Me,” #15, 1956), performed regularly on TV variety shows, including The Lawrence Welk Show from 1955 to 1968, continues to record and perform as a trio in the 10s
1946 ● John Fleck / (John Fleckenstein) → Bass guitarist (1965-1966) for influential garage/psych rock Love, “7 And 7 Is” (#33, 1966), then briefly with garage/proto-punk The Standells, “Dirty Water” (#11, 1966)
1948 ● Andrew Fairweather Low → Welsh roots rock guitarist, songwriter and singer, founding member of early prog rock septet Amen Corner, “(If Paradise Is) Half As Nice” (UK #1, 1969), then frontman for hard rock Fair Weather, “Natural Sinner” (UK #6, 1970), solo and sessions plus backing bands for The Who, Roger Waters, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Bill Wyman and others
1949 ● “Fat Larry” James / (Larry E. James) → Drummer, singer and frontman for R&B/soul-funk Fat Larry’s Band, “Act Like You Know” (Dance/Club #24, 1982), died on 12/5/1987 of a heart attack
1950 ● Ted Turner / (David Alan Turner) → Dual lead guitar and vocals for Brit prog-rock Wishbone Ash, “Time Was” (1972), session work for George Harrison, Billy Preston, Al Stewart and others
1951 ● Joe Lynn Turner / (Joseph Linquito) → Guitar, vocals for hard rock Fandango, joined Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow in 1981 as lead vocalist, “Stone Cold” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1982), left in 1985 for solo career, “Endlessly” (Mainstream Rock #19, 1985), joined Deep Purple briefly, “King Of Dreams” (Mainstream Rock #6, 1990), solo
1951 ● Andrew Gold → Pop and light rock (L. A. sound) singer/songwriter, “Lonely Boy” (#7, 1977), session musician for James Taylor, Carly Simon, Nicolette Larson and others, died in his sleep on 6/3/2011, age 59
1953 ● Donnie Munro / (Donaidh Rothach) → Lead guitar and vocals for Scottish Celtic folk-rock Runrig, “An Ubhal As Airde (The Highest Apple)” (UK #18, 1995), solo
1957 ● Butch Vig / (Bryan Vigorson) → Founding member and drummer for Scottish-American alt rock Garbage, “Stupid Girl” (Dance/Club #5, 1996), recording engineer and producer for Nirvana‘s Nevermind album (1991), Sonic Youth, The Smashing PumpkinsGish (1991), L7, Soul Asylum and others
1957 ● Mojo Nixon / (Neill Kirby McMillan, Jr.) → Satirical comedy/novelty singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Debbie Gibson Is Pregnant With My Two-Headed Love Child” (Modern Rock #16, 1989)
1959 ● Johnny Kemp → Bahamian R&B/dance-pop singer, songwriter and session vocalist whose biggest hit, “Just Got Paid” (#10, R&B #1, 1988) was nominated for a Grammy Award, found floating off a beach and presumed drowned in an accident on 4/16/2015, age 55
1961 ● Apollonia / (Patricia Kotero) → One of several female singers and musicians associated with Prince, lead actress in the film Purple Rain (1984), replaced singer Vanity in dance-pop trio Vanity 6 which was rechristened Apollonia 6 (“Sex Shooter” Dance/Club #32, 1984) plus solo a mildly successful solo career (“Since I Fell For You,” Dance/Club #6, 1988)
1961 ● Pete De Freitas → Drummer for gloomy post-punk psych-rock Echo & The Bunnymen, “Enlighten Me” (Modern Rock #8, 1990), died in a motorcycle accident on 6/14/1989, age 27
1962 ● Lee Mavers → Guitar and vocals for Brit jangle pop The La’s, “There She Goes” (#49, UK #13, 1991)
1965 ● Al Macaulay → Drummer for Brit folk-pop-soul Tindersticks, “Bathtime” (UK #38, 1997)
1970 ● Zelma Davis → Vocals for dance-pop C+C Music Factory, “Gonna Make You Sweat” (#1, 1991)

August 03
1917 ● Les Elgart → Swing, dance and jazz-pop bandleader, with his brother, Larry, recorded the original version of “Bandstand Boogie,” the theme song long-running teen dance show American Bandstand, withdrew from performing in the late 60s, died from heart failure on 7/29/1995, age 78
1921 ● Richard Adler → Lyricist, composer and producer of acclaimed 50s Broadway shows, with songwriting partner Jerry Ross created several hit songs, among them “Rags To Riches” (Tony Bennett, #1, 1953) and “Whatever Lola Wants” (Sarah Vaughan, #6, 1955), following Ross‘s death in 1955 continued to write and co-write but had little commercial success, died from natural causes on 6/21/2012, age 90
1924 ● Gordon Stoker → Vocals and piano for premier Southern gospel backing group The Jordanaires, worked behind Elvis Presley for 25 years, backed Patsy Cline and other Nashville country stars, died after a long illness on 3/27/2013, age 88
1926 ● Tony Bennett / (Anthony Dominic Benedetto) → Fourteen-time Grammy-winning pop and easy listening singer, “I Left My Heart In San Francisco” (#19, 1962) and eight other Top 40 singles and four other Adult Contemporary Top 10 hits
1929 ● Arthur Wood → Original keyboardist with Brit blues-rock Climax Blues Band, “Couldn’t Get It Right” (#3, 1977)
1936 ● Kenny Hodges → Bass and backing vocals for folk-sunshine-pop Spanky & Our Gang, “Someday Will Never Be The Same” (#9, 1967), died from viral pneumonia on 1/29/2013, age 76
1938 ● Terry Wogan / (Sir Michael Terrence Wogan) → Irish-born BBC radio and TV personality, Radio 2 host of various programs over nearly 40 years, including Wake Up To Wogan and Eurovision Song Contest
1939 ● Jimmy Nicol → Drummer and temporary member of The Beatles for nine Australian gigs in June 1964 at the height of Beatlemania, sitting in after Ringo Starr collapsed and was hospitalized on 6/3/964 with tonsillitis, returned to obscurity when Ringo rejoined the band on 6/14/1964
1941 ● Beverly Lee → Vocals for first 60s girl-group to achieve national prominence, The Shirelles, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (#1, 1961)
1946 ● John Foley York → Bassist for The Byrds replacing departed Chris Hillman in 1968, “Lay Lady Lay” (#132, 1969), solo and various collaborations and Byrds spin-offs
1949 ● B .B. Dickerson / (Morris Dickerson) → Bassist for laid-back R&B/soul-funk War, “Spill The Wine” (#3, 1970), continued with spin-off Lowrider Band
1951 ● John Graham → Guitarist for R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975)
1953 ● Ian Bairnson → Guitarist for soft pop-rock Pilot, “Magic” (#1, 1974)
1953 ● Randy Scruggs → Grammy-winning country singer/songwriter, producer and session player, solo artist, “It’s Only Love” (Country #67, 1998), son of legendary country/bluegrass great Earl Scruggs
1956 ● Kirk Brandon → Co-founder, guitar and vocals for Brit post-punk/goth/indie rock Spear Of Destiny, “Strangers In Our Town” (Dance/Club #40, 1987)
1959 ● Martin Atkins → Session drummer and member of post-punk Public Image Ltd., “This Is Not A Love Song” (UK #5, 1983), fronted industrial music collective Pigface, worked in industrial metal band Ministry, “I Wanted To Tell Her” (Dance/Club #13, 1983), Nine Inch Nails, “The Day The World Went Away” (#17, 1999) and post-punk/gloom-industrial metal Killing Joke, “Follow The Leaders” (#25, 1981), Invisible Records founder and chief executive
1963 ● Ed Roland → Founder, primary songwriter, guitarist and engineer/producer for post-grunge alt rock Collective Soul, “Shine” (#11, Mainstream Rock #1, 1994)
1963 ● James Hetfield → Co-founder, rhythm guitar, chief songwriter and lead vocals for Grammy-winning heavy metal Metallica, “Enter Sandman” (#16, 1991), ranked #24 in Hit Parader magazine’s 100 Greatest Metal Vocalists of All Time
1966 ● Dean Sams → Keyboards and backing vocals for cross-over country-rockers Lonestar, “Amazed” (#1, 1999)
1966 ● Shirley Manson → Scottish lead vocalist for Scottish-American alt rock Garbage, “Stupid Girl” (Dance/Club #5, 1996)
1967 ● Skin / (Deborah Anne Dyer) → Vocals for Brit alt rock/metal Skunk Anansie, “All I Want” (UK #14, 1996)
1971 ● DJ Spinderella / (Deidra Muriel Roper) → Vocals for female hip hop trio Salt-N-Pepa, “Let’s Talk About Sex” (#13, 1991)
1973 ● Stephen Carpenter → Guitar for Grammy-winning alt heavy metal Deftones, “Change (In The House Of Flies)” (Mainstream Rock #9, 2000)
1985 ● Brent Kutzle → Bass guitar and cello for self-proclaimed “genreless” pop-rock OneRepublic, “Apologize” (#1, 2006), most popular digital download/highest airplay song ever to-date
1985 ● Holly Blake-Arnstein → Lead vocals for R&B/dance-pop all-girl quartet Dream, “He Loves U Not” (#2, 2000)

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This Week’s Birthdays (June 30 – July 6)

Happy Birthday this week to:

June 30
1917 ● Lena Horne / (Lena Mary Calhoun Horne) → Grammy-winning contemporary pop singer, stage, film and TV actress and nightclub entertainer with a 70 year career from the Cotton Club in the 30s to Hollywood films in the 40s to blacklisting in the 50s to TV and Broadway in the 70s and 80s, recorded several charting hits, including “Love Me Or Leave Me” (#19, 1955), died from unspecified causes on 5/9/2010, age 92.
1936 ● Dave Van Ronk → Folk and acoustic blues singer/songwriter and guitarist, figurehead in the 60s Greenwich Village folk coffeehouse scene, influenced Bob Dylan and many other young folksters, died from complications of colon cancer surgery on 2/10/2002, age 65
1937 ● Larry Henley / (Lawrence Joel Henley) → Lead vocals for pop-rock trio The Newbeats, “Bread And Butter” (#2, 1964) but better known as a Nashville songwriter with several Country #1 hits and for co-writing “Wind Beneath My Wings” (#1, 1989) for Bette Midler, died from complications of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases on 12/18/2014, age 77
1939 ● Tony Hatch → Composer, pianist, Pye Records staff songwriter, producer for The Searchers, David Bowie, the Montanas and others, wrote “Downtown” for Petula Clark (#1, 1964)
1940 ● Larry Hall / (Lawrence Kendall Hall) → One hit wonder pop singer with the debut hit “Sandy” (#15, 1960), left the industry after several unsuccessful follow-ups and became an Oregon cattle rancher, died from cancer on 9/24/1997, age 57
1943 ● Flo Ballard / (Florence Glenda Ballard Chapman) → Founding member and singer with R&B/soul-pop trio The Supremes, “Where Did Our Love Go” (#1, 1964), left in 1967 when Motown snubbed her and pushed Diana Ross to the front, tried to become a solo act but was largely unsuccessful, died of a heart attack on 2/22/1976, age 32
1944 ● Glenn Shorrock → Songwriter, lead vocals and co-founder of several top-level Aussie pop/rock bands, including Little River Band, “Lonesome Loser” (#6, 1979), solo
1946 ● Billy Brown / (William Brown) → Vocals for R&B/soul trio The Moments, “Love On A Two-Way Street” (#3, 1970), then name change to sweet soul Ray, Goodman & Brown, “Special Lady” (#5, R&B #1, 1979)
1949 ● Andy Scott → Guitar and synthesizer for neo-bubblegum/glam pop-rock Sweet, “Ballroom Blitz” (#5, 1973)
1951 ● Stanley Clarke → Virtuoso electric and acoustic jazz and jazz-rock fusion bassist, bandleader and solo, “Sweet Baby” (#19, R&B #6, 1981), collaborated with Chick Corea in fusion band Return To Forever, session work for Santana, Keith Richards, Quincy Jones, Paul McCartney and others, film score composer
1953 ● Hal Lindes → Guitarist and film score composer, joined post-punk New Wave rock Dire Straits, “Money For Nothing” (#1, 1985) in 1981, solo and session work
1956 ● Philip Adrian Wright → Joined synth-pop pioneers The Human League, “Don’t You Want Me” (#1, 1981) in 1978 as “Director of Visuals”, learned keyboards, left the band in 1986 to pursue graphic design
1957 ● Doug Sampson → Original drummer for Brit heavy metal Iron Maiden, “Flight Of Icarus” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1983), left the band in 1977 to escape the rigors of constant touring and never played professionally again
1962 ● Julianne Regan → Vocals for goth-rock All About Eve, “Martha’s Harbour” (UK #10, 1988)
1963 ● Yngwie Malmsteen → Swedish composer, bandleader and technically accomplished neo-classical heavy metal guitarist, pioneer of the lightning fast “shredding” technique, “Heaven Tonight” (Mainstream Rock #19, 1988)
1967 ● Cammy Camell / (Peter James Camell) → Bass and rhythm guitar for Brit jangle pop The La’s, “There She Goes” (#49, UK #13, 1991)
1968 ● Philip Anselmo → Lead vocals for alt heavy metal Pantera, “Planet Caravan” (Mainstream Rock #21, 1994)
1969 ● Tom Drummond → Bassist for alt pop-rock trio Better Than Ezra, “Good” (#30, Modern Rock #1, 1995)
1979 ● Andrew Burrows → Drummer for Brit-Swede indie pop-rock Razorlight, “America” (UK #1, 2006)
1983 ● Anton Gordon → Vocals in teen pop boy band One True Voice, “Sacred Trust / After You’re Gone” (UK #2, 2002)
1983 ● Cheryl Cole / (Cheryl Ann Tweedy) → Singer in pre-fab all-girl Euro-pop vocal group Girls Aloud, “Sound Of The Underground” (UK #1, 2002), judge on the UK version of The X Factor in 2008, solo, “Fight For This Love” (UK #1, 2009)
1984 ● Fantasia / (Fantasia Barrino) → R&B/soul singer, actress, “I Believe” (#1, 2004), the first debut single to top the Billboard Hot 100 chart
1985 ● T-Pain / (Faheem Rasheed Najm) → R&B/hip hop MC and singer, “Buy U A Drank (Shawty Snappin’)” (#1, 2007)
1992 ● Lamb Lennon Gaede → With fraternal twin sister Lynx, one half of the white supremacist bubblegum teen pop/”hate rock” duo Prussian Blue, “I Will Bleed For You” (2004)
1992 ● Lynx Vaughan Gaede → With fraternal twin sister Lamb, one half of the white supremacist bubblegum teen pop/”hate rock” duo Prussian Blue, “I Will Bleed For You” (2004)

July 01
1915 ● Willie Dixon → The “Poet Laureate of the Blues,” vital Chicago blues pioneer, singer, songwriter and guitarist, composed over 500 songs, including recognized standards such as “Spoonful,” “Back Door Man,” “Hoochie Coochie Man,” “Little Red Rooster” and many others, major influence on blues-rockers, including The Allman Brothers Band, Cream, The Doors, Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones, died of heart failure on 1/29/1992, age 76
1928 ● Bobby Day / (Robert James Byrd) → R&B/doo wop vocals and songwriter with The Hollywood Flames, “Buzz Buzz Buzz” (#11, R&B #5, 1957), then solo, “Rockin’ Robin” (#2, R&B #1, 1958), later one half of the duo Bob & Earl, “Harlem Shuffle” (#44, 1963), died of cancer on 1/27/1990, age 62
1933 ● Eddie Bond → Pioneer rockabilly star, singer and guitarist, “Rockin’ Daddy” (1956), toured on the Louisiana Hayride with Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Johnny Horton and others, radio DJ
1939 ● Delaney Bramlett → Accomplished guitarist and songwriter, member of house band The Shindogs for TV pop music variety show Shindig, one half of husband/wife front for rock/soul revue Delaney & Bonnie & Friends, “Never Ending Song Of Love” (#13, 1971), worked with Eric Clapton, Dave Mason and George Harrison died from complications of gall bladder surgery on 12/27/2008, age 69
1942 ● Andraé Crouch → The “Father of Modern Gospel,” Grammy-winning, renowned and respected pioneer of contemporary gospel, singer, writer, producer, solo artist, “I’ll Be Thinking Of You” (R&B #69, 1980), collaborated with Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Madonna and others, film score composer and pastor, died following a heart attack on 1/8/2015, age 72
1945 ● Debbie Harry → Singer and frontwoman for New Wave pop-rock Blondie, “Heart Of Glass” (#1, 1979), solo, “In Love With Love” (#70, Dance/Club #1, 1987)
1946 ● June Monteiro → Singer for pop girl trio The Toys, “A Lover’s Concerto” (#2, 1965)
1948 ● John Ford → Bass and acoustic guitar for Brit folk-prog-rock The Strawbs, “Part Of The Union” (UK #2, 1973), formed rock duo Hudson Ford with bandmate/drummer Richard Hudson, “Pick Up The Pieces” (UK #8, 1973), then punk rock The Monks, “Nice Legs Shame About Her Face” (UK #19, 1979)
1949 ● John Farnham → Hugely popular solo pop-rock singer and songwriter in his native Australia, “You’re The Voice” (#82, UK #6, 1987)
1951 ● Fred Schneider → Vocals and frontman for New wave alt-dance-rock The B-52’s, “Love Shack” (#3, 1989)
1951 ● Victor Willis → Original member, lead singer, songwriter and policeman or naval officer character for campy, suggestive gay pop-rock vocal man band The Village People, “Y.M.C.A.” (#2, 1978), co-wrote most of the band’s hit songs and became embroiled in a copyright dispute after leaving in 1980, released a solo album in 2015 that had been recorded in 1979
1952 ● Dan Akroyd → TV and film actor, singer, portrayed “Elwood Blues” in the Saturday Night Live skit and spin-off band The Blues Brothers, “Soul Man” (#14, 1979)
1952 ● Ndugu Chancler / (Leon Chancler) → Grammy-winning jazz-funk drummer, percussionist and sought-after sessionman, worked The Crusaders, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Michael Jackson (drummed on “Billie Jean,” #1, 1983), Carlos Santana, Frank Sinatra, Donna Summer, Weather Report and many others on hundreds of albums, died from prostate cancer on 2/3/2018, age 65
1956 ● Phil Solem → Singer, songwriter, co-founder of power pop Great Buildings, which became The Rembrandts, “I’ll Be There For You” (#17, 1995), the theme song to the TV situation comedy Friends
1959 ● Edem Ephraim → With Dennis Fuller, one half of Brit/Austrian dance-europop London Boys, “London Nights” (UK #2, 1989), died with Fuller in a car collision on 1/21/1996, age 36
1960 ● Champagne King / (Evelyn King) → R&B/disco and post-disco singer, “Love Come Down” (#17, Dance/Club #1, 1982)
1960 ● Ted Key → Bassist for Brit jangle-guitar pop-rock The Housemartins, “Caravan Of Love” (UK #1, 1986)
1963 ● Roddy Bottum → Keyboards for influential metal/funk/hip hop/punk fusion band Faith No More, “Epic” (#9, 1990)
1964 ● Pol Burton → Drummer for punk-pop-dance Transvision Vamp, “Baby I Don’t Care” (, 1983)
1971 ● Adam MacDougall → Keyboards for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1971 ● Missy Elliott / (Melissa Elliott) → Hugely successful, four time Grammy-winning female rapper and songwriter, “Work It” (#2, 2002), producer, wrote “If Your Girl Only Knew” (#11, Dance/Club #6, 1996) for Aaliyah

July 02
1917 ● Murry Wilson / (Murry Gage Wilson) → Tough-love patriarch, business manager, co-producer and publisher for Brian, Carl and Dennis Wilsonn in the formative years of sunshine pop/surf rock The Beach Boys (“I Get Around,” #1, 1964), dismissed as manager by Brian in 1964 and died from a heart attack on 6/4/1973, age 55
1925 ● Marvin Rainwatef / (Marvin Percy) → One quarter Cherokee country, rockabilly and pop singer, “Gonna Find Me A Bluebird” (#18, Country #3, 1957) and “Whole Lotta Woman” (#60, UK #1, 1958), age 88
1927 ● Lee Allen → Early rock ‘n’ roll tenor saxophonist and session musician in New Orleans in the 50s, played on many hits by Fats Domino (“I’m Walking,” #4, R&B #1, 1957), Little Richard (“Tutti Frutti,” #14, R&B #2, 1956) and others but found little success on his own except for “Walkin’ With Mr. Lee” (#54, 1958), performed with Fats Domino through the 70s, and with Stray Cats and The Blasters in the 80s, died on 10/18/1994, age 67
1936 ● Tom Springfield / (Dion O’Brien) → Vocals and songwriting with sister Dusty Springfield in light folk-pop trio The Springfields, “Silver Threads And Golden Needles” (#20, 1962)
1937 ● Dee Palmer / (David Palmer) → Classically-trained composer, arranger and keyboardist with long-lived Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973), underwent male-to-female sex change operation in 2004
1939 ● Paul Williams → Vocals for R&B giants The Temptations, “My Girl” (#1, 1965) and Grammy-winning “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” (#1, 1972), shot himself to death on 8/17/1973, age 34
1942 ● Leapy Lee / (Graham Pulleybank) → One hit wonder Brit comedian and stage actor turned country-pop crossover singer, “Little Arrows” (#16, Country #11, 1968)
1945 ● Peter Cruikshank → Bassist for blues-rock power trio The Groundhogs, which had three UK Top 10 albums in the early 70s, including Split (1971)
1949 ● The Professor / (Roy Bittan) → Keyboards and synthesizer for Bruce Springsteen‘s E Street Band, session work for David Bowie, Jackson Browne, Dire Straits, Peter Gabriel, Meat Loaf, Stevie Nicks, Bob Seger, others
1950 ● Duncan Mackay → Keyboards for glam rock Cockney Rebel, “Make Me Smile (Come Up And See Me)” (UK #1, 1975)
1952 ● Johnny Colla → Saxophone and guitar for pop-rock bar band Huey Lewis & The News, “The Power Of Love” (#1, 1985)
1954 ● Pete Briquette → Bass and vocals for Irish pop-punk Boomtown Rats, “I Don’t Like Mondays” (#73, 1979) and “Rat Trap” (UK #1, 1979), the first rock song by an Irish band to reach #1 in the UK
1955 ● Jerry Hall → Fashion model and sometime actress known chiefly for her marriage to Rolling Stone Mick Jagger in November 1990, ending in divorce in 1999
1956 ● Jeffrey Cooper → Backing vocals for synth-dance-funk Midnight Star, “Operator” (#18, R&B #1, 1990)
1957 ● Mike Anger → Bassist in New Wave pop-rock Blow Monkeys, “Digging Your Scene” (#14, 1986)
1961 ● Annie Ruddock / (Ann-Marie Teresa Antoinette Ruddock) → Vocals and saxophone for Brit reggae-pop-ska band Amazulu, “Too Good To Be Forgotten” (UK #5, 1986)
1964 ● Roy Boulter → Drummer for Brit synth-pop The Farm, “Groovy Train” (#41, Dance/Club #4, 1991)
1965 ● Dave Parsons → Bassist for punk-pop-dance Transvision Vamp, “Baby I Don’t Care” (, 1983), joined alt-rock Bush, “Glycerine” (Mainstream #4, 1995) in 1992
1970 ● Monie Love / (Simone Wilson) → Former protégé of Queen Latifah and member of Native Tongues hip hop collective, solo rapper, “It’s A Shame, My Sister” (#26, Dance/Club #2, 1991)
1974 ● Rocky Gray → Drummer for Grammy-winning goth-pop-metal Evanescence, “Bring Me To Life” (#5, 2003), played lead guitar for Christian metal Living Sacrifice and drums for other metal bands in his native Arkansas
1983 ● Michelle Branch → Teen pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “All You Wanted” (#6, 2002) and duet with Carlos Santana, “The Game Of Love” (#5, 2002), then formed country-pop The Wreckers, “Leave The Pieces” (#34, Country #1, 2006)
1985 ● Ashley Michelle Tisdale → Model, actress and singer in High School Musical movies (most watched cable TV movies ever), solo, “It’s Alright, It’s OK” (Dance/Club #20, 2009)

July 03
1878 ● George M. Cohan / (George Michael Cohan) → Heralded composer, playwright and entertainer known as the “Father of American musical comedy” and for publishing more than 300 songs, including enduring favorites “Give My Regards To Broadway” (1904), “The Yankee Doodle Boy” (1904) and “You’re A Grand Old Flag” (1906), created and produced over 50 Broadway musicals in the 10s and 20s, acted in and produced movie musicals in the 30s, died from cancer on 11/5/1942, age 64
1893 ● “Mississippi” John Hurt / (John Smith Hurt) → Dexterous country-blues guitarist and songwriter who might have passed in obscurity but for the 60s blues-folk revival, his 1964 recordings for the Library of Congress touched off a brief period in the spotlight that continued after his death from a heart attack on 11/2/1966, age 73
1929 ● David Lynch → Vocals for hugely successful R&B/doo wop The Platters, “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” (#1, 1958) and 13 other Top 20 hits between 1955 and 1967, died of cancer on 1/2/1981, age 51
1930 ● Tommy Tedesco → Top session guitarist, billed by Guitar Player magazine as the most recorded guitarist in history, worked on TV and film scores and recorded with The Association, The Beach Boys, Cher, Sam Cooke, The Everly Brothers, Ella Fitzgerald, The Monkees, Elvis Presley, Nancy and Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, The Supremes, Frank Zappa and numerous others, died from lung cancer on 11/10/1997, age 67
1934 ● Hot Dog Rog / (Roger Christian) → Songwriter and popular Los Angeles radio DJ in the 60s and 70s, co-wrote several surf-rock and hot rod songs and ballads, including “Little Deuce Coup” (#15, 1963) and “Don’t Worry Baby” (#24, 1964) with Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys and “The Little Old Lady From Pasadena” (#3, 1964) and “Dead Man’s Curve” ((#8, 1964) with Jan Berry of Jan & Dean, died from kidney and liver failure on 7/11/1991, age 57
1936 ● Frederick Tupper Saussy III → American composer, musician, advertising executive, watercolor painter, author, high school English teacher, jazz recording artist and Nashville Symphony contributor best known as the songwriter and keyboardist for psych-pop The Neon Philharmonic, “Morning Girl” (#17, 1969), later convicted of tax evasion and spent nearly 10 years as a fugitive before surfacing and turning himself in, became chapel music director and piano instructor for prisoners while serving his sentence in a California correctional facility, upon release wrote several books and resumed recording, died from a heart attack on 3/16/2007, two days before the release of his first CD and first new music album in 37 years, The Chocolate Orchid Piano Bar (2007), age 70
1940 ● Maureen Kennedy → Vocals for 60s all-girl Brit-pop ensemble The Vernon Girls, “Lover Please” (UK #16, 1962)
1940 ● Fontella Bass → Gospel-rooted R&B/soul diva and pianist, “Rescue Me” (#4, R&B #1, 1965), left the music business in the mid-70s to raise her children, successfully sued for back royalties in the 90s, died following a heart attack on 12/26/2012, age 72
1943 ● Garland Jeffreys → African-American/Puerto Rican American rock, reggae and blues singer and songwriter, “Wild In The Street” (1973) and several solo albums
1943 ● Judith Durham → Vocals for Aussie folk-sunshine pop The Seekers, “Georgy Girl” (#2, 1967), solo
1946 ● Victor Unitt → Guitarist with Brit blues then prog-rock Edgar Broughton Band, “Apache Dropout” (UK #33, 1970), joined blues-rock The Pretty Things and appeared on the album Parachute (1970)
1947 ● Betty Buckley → Film (Carrie, 1976), TV (Eight Is Enough, 1977) and Broadway (Cats, 1983) actress, traditional pop and show tunes singer with 14 solo albums, plus cast recording of multiple Broadway shows
1948 ● Paul Barrere → Guitarist and songwriter for Southern-fried blues-boogie rock Little Feat, “Dixie Chicken” (1973) and “Hate To Lose Your Lovin'” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1988)
1949 ● John Verity → Guitarist for hard/art rock Argent, “Hold Your Head Up” (#5, 1972), formed Phoenix and later Charlie, “It’s Inevitable” (Mainstream Rock #13, 1983), solo, producer
1949 ● Johnnie Wilder, Jr. → Co-founder and Lead vocals in multinational, sophisticated disco-funk Heatwave, “Boogie Nights” (#2, 1977), died in his sleep on 5/13/2006, age 56
1950 ● Damon Harris → Joined Motown R&B/soul legends The Temptations as tenor vocalist in 1971, Grammy-winning “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” (#1, 1972), left in 1975 and formed disco Impact, “Give A Broken Heart A Break” (Disco #5, 1976), solo
1952 ● Laura Branigan / (Laura Ann Branigan) → Grammy-winning 80s pop-rock singer, songwriter and actress with a pair of hits, “Gloria” (#2, 1982) and “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You” (#12, AC #1, 1983) plus writing credits for soundtracks to Flashdance (1983) and Ghostbusters (1984) and TV and stage acting, died of a brain aneurysm on 8/26/2004, age 52
1952 ● Andy Fraser → Bassist and songwriter, briefly with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers before co-founding power rock Free (“All Right Now,” #4, 1970) at age 16, wrote “Obama (Yes We Can)” for Barack Obama’s 2009 presidential campaign, his songs have been covered by Joe Cocker, Robert Palmer, Rod Stewart and others, died from cancer and AIDS on 3/16/2015, age 62
1955 ● Mike Corby → Keyboards and guitars for mainstream pop-rock The Babys, “Isn’t It Time” (#13, 1977), left in 1978
1955 ● Neil Clark → Guitar for Brit pop-rock Lloyd Cole & The Commotions, “Lost Weekend” (UK #17, 1985)
1956 ● Stephen Pearcy → Lead vocalist for hard rock/glam and hair metal Ratt, “Round And Round” (#12, 1984)
1960 ● Vince Clarke / (Vincent John Martin) → Keyboards, synthesizer and founding member of electro-dance/synth-pop Depeche Mode, “Just Can’t Get Enough” (Dance/Club #26, 1982), left to form synth-pop duo Yaz (Yazoo in the UK), “Nobody’s Diary” (Dance/Club #1, 1983), then co-founded synth-pop duo The Assembly, “Never Never” (UK #4, 1983), then synth-dance duo Erasure, “Chains Of Love” (#12, Dance/Club #4, 1988) plus over 20 other Dance/Club hits
1968 ● Martyn Walsh → Bassist for Brit psych-alt rock Inspiral Carpets, “Two Worlds Collide” (Modern Rock #8, 1992)
1969 ● Butterfly / (Ishmael Butler) → Vocals and producer for hip hop rap-jazz fusion trio Digable Planets, “Reachin’ (A New Refutation Of Time And Space)” (#15, R&B #5, 1993)
1969 ● Kevin Hearn → Keyboards, accordion and guitar for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, “One Week” (#1, 1998)
1975 ● Javier Weyler → Drummer for Welsh alt rock/trad rock Stereophonics, “Have A Nice Day” (Modern Rock #26, UK #5, 2001), replacing Richard Cable who departed in 2003
1976 ● Shane Lynch → Vocals for Irish teen-pop boy band Boyzone, “No Matter What” (Adult Contemporary #12, 1999)

July 04
1826 ● Stephen Foster → The “Father of American Music,” enduring 19th century popular music composer whose works are at the core of the American Songbook, his hundreds of titles include lasting standards such as “Oh, Susanna” (1849), “Camptown Races” (1850) and “Beautiful Dreamer” (1864), died following an accidental fall on 1/13/1864, age 37
1889 ● Joe Young → Tin Pan Alley and popular music lyricist, co-wrote “I’m Sitting On Top Of The World” (1925) and the oft-covered pop standard “I’m Going to Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter,” a #5 hit for Fats Waller in 1935 and a #3 hit for Billy Williams in 1957, among others, died 4/21/1939, age 49
1911 ● Mitch Miller / (William Mitchell Miller) → Classical musician, then pop bandleader, arranger and singer, “The Yellow Rose Of Texas” (#1, 1955), later head of A&R (artists and repertory) for Columbia Records pop division and host of his own TV program that featured the “Sing Along With Mitch” concept based on the success of 20 such albums he released in the early 60s, died after a short illness on 7/31/2010, age 99
1934 ● Gilbert Lopez → Vocals in R&B/doo wop The Tune Weavers, “Happy, Happy Birthday Baby” (#5, 1957)
1938 ● Bill Withers → Three-time Grammy-winning R&B/soul singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Lean On Me” (#1, 1972) and “Just The Two Of Us” (#2, 1981)
1940 ● Dave Rowberry → Keyboards for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964), died from a bleeding ulcer on 6/6/2003, age 62
1941 ● Dick Addrisi → With his older brother, Don, one-half the pop vocal duo The Addrisi Brothers, scored several minor hits in the 60s and 70s but found greater success as a songwriting team, including “Never My Love” for The Association (#2, 1967) which they recorded for themselves and reached #80 (AC #28) in 1977, continued to write and perform together until his brother’s death in 1984
1943 ● Annette Beard Sterling Helton → Original member and vocalist for Motown R&B/pop girl group Martha & The Vandellas, “(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave” (#4, 1963), left the group in 1964 for her family
1943 ● Fred Wesley → Jazz and funk trombonist, music director and bandleader for James Brown‘s backing band, The J.B.’s, “Doing It To Death” (#22, R&B #1, 1973), also recorded and toured with funk Parliament and Funkadelic, Count Basie, Maceo Parker, De La Soul and others, currently a visiting artist/adjunct professor at Berklee College of Music and other schools
1943 ● Blind Owl Wilson / (Alan Wilson) → Guitar, harmonica and vocals for blues-rock/boogie-rock Canned Heat, “Going Up The Country” (#11, 1968), died of a drug overdose on 9/3/1970, age 27
1947 ● Jacques Morali → French producer and songwriter, produced over 65 albums, formed and managed gay disco troupe Village People, “YMCA” (#2, 1979), died of AIDS on 11/15/1991, age 44
1948 ● Jeremy Spencer → Early member and slide guitarist for blues-rock Fleetwood Mac, “Albatross” (UK #1, 1969), left the band abruptly during a 1971 tour to join the Children of God religious sect
1949 ● Gene Gunnels → Early drummer in 60s psych-pop-rock Strawberry Alarm Clock, “Incense And Peppermints” (#1, 1967), but left before the song became a hit
1950 ● Kid Jensen / (David ‘Jensen) → Canadian-born, Danish descent radio DJ and TV personality, first for Radio Luxembourg in the late 60s and the BBC Radio 1 beginning in 1976, later Capital FM and other London stations
1951 ● Ralph Johnson → Drummer for R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975)
1952 ● John Waite → Singer, songwriter and bassist for mainstream pop-rock The Babys, “Everytime I Think Of You” (#13, 1979), then arena rock Bad English, “When I See You Smile” (#1, 1989), then pop-rock balladeer solo, “Missing You” (#1, 1984)
1958 ● Kirk Pengilly → Guitar and vocals for Aussie New Wave dance-groove-pop INXS, “Need You Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1963 ● Matt Malley → Bassist for alt-rock Counting Crows, “Mr. Jones” (Modern Rock #2, 1994)
1964 ● Mark Slaughter → Vocals, guitar, keyboards, songwriter and frontman for pop-glam metal Slaughter, “Fly To The Angels” (#19, 1990), currently a voice-over actor and TV music composer
1970 ● Andy McClure → Drummer for Britpop Sleeper, “Sale Of The Century” (UK #10, 1996)
1971 ● Andrew Creeggan → Piano for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, “One Week” (#1, 1998)
1972 ● William Goldsmith → Drummer for post-grunge alt rock Foo Fighters, “Learn To Fly” (Modern Rock #1, 1999) quit the band in 1997
1978 ● Stephen McNally → Vocals and guitar for short-lived teen pop-rock trio BBMak, “Back Here” (#13, 2000)

July 05
1912 ● Mack David → Elder brother of composer Hal David, film and TV lyricist and songwriter with credits to over 1,000 songs, particularly those from the Disney films Cinderella (1950) and Alice In Wonderland (1951), plus Walk On The Wild Side (1963), Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte (1964) and Cat Ballou (1966) among others, co-wrote “Baby It’s You” (The Shirelles, #8, R&B #3, 1961), died from natural causes on 12/30/1993, age 81
1920 ● Smiley Lewis / (Overton Amos Lemons) → New Orleans R&B guitarist, songwriter and booming-voiced singer, “I Hear You Knocking” (R&B #2, 1955), wrote “One Night” covered by Elvis Presley (#4, 1958), died from stomach cancer on 10/7/1966, age 46
1930 ● Mitch Jayne / (Mitchell Franklin Jayne) → Bluegrass radio DJ, then founding member, bassist and lyricist for influential, progressive bluegrass and country-rock pioneers The Dillards, “It’s About Time” (#92, 1971)
1938 ● Snuff Garrett / (Thomas Lesslie Garrett) → Record label executive, DJ, TV host, producer and arranger, as A&R man for Liberty Records produced “This Diamond Ring” (#1, 1965) for Gary Lewis & The Playboys and other hits in the 60s, left Liberty and started his own production company with acts including Sonny & Cher, Eddie Rabbitt, Vicki Lawrence, Tanya Tucker and others, died from cancer on 12/16/2015, age 76
1941 ● Terry Cashman / (Dennis Minoque) → The “Balladeer of Baseball,” one-time minor league player turned singer/songwriter with doo wop The Chevrons, “Lullabye” (1960) and pop duo Cashman & West, “American City Suite” (#27, 1972), co-produced several of Jim Croce‘s hits, then solo and best known for his minor hit “Talkin’ Baseball” (1981), which he has since recorded with custom lyrics for nearly every Major League Baseball franchise
1943 ● Robbie Robertson / (Jaime Royal Robertson) → Guitar, vocals and chief songwriter for seminal roots rock The Band, “Up On Cripple Creek” (#25, 1970), solo, “Showdown At Big Sky” (Mainstream Rock #2, 1987)
1945 ● Dick Scoppettone → Vocals for folk and sunshine-pop Harper’s Bizarre, “Feelin’ Groovy” (#13, 1967)
1949 ● Doug Grassel / (Douglas Martin Grassel) → Rhythm guitarist in the Jerry Kasenetz/Jeffrey Katz ever-changing team of session musicians whose recordings were marketed as Ohio Express (“Yummy Yummy Yummy,” #4, 1968) and other fictional pop acts, continued to perform in various oldies-circuit groups until he died from fibrosis of the lungs on 9/21/2013, age 64
1950 ● Andy Ellison → Guitar, vocals and frontman for Brit pop art/mod rock John’s Children, “Desdemona” (1967), the band occasionally recognized as a punk and glam-rock precursor
1950 ● Huey Lewis / (Hugh Anthony Craig III) → Leader and lead vocalist for pop-rock bar band Huey Lewis & The News, “The Power Of Love” (#1, 1985)
1950 ● Michael Monarch → Original guitarist for Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968)
1956 ● Terry Chimes → Original drummer for influential and acclaimed punk-ska-dance-rock The Clash, “Rock The Casbah” (#8, 1982), played with Hanoi Rocks and toured with Black Sabbath before becoming a chiropractor
1959 ● Marc Cohn → Folk-rock singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, “Walking In Memphis” (#13, 1991), Grammy winner for Best New Artist of 1991
1964 ● Toni Halliday / (Antoinette Halliday) → Vocalist, lyricist. occasional guitarist and one half of the alt pop-rock duo Curve, “Coast Is Clear” (Modern Rock #12, 1991)
1969 ● Aled Richards → Drummer for Welsh indie-alt-rock Catatonia, “Mulder And Scully” (UK #3, 1998)
1973 ● Bengt Fredrik Lagerberg → Drummer for Swedish pop-rock The Cardigans, “Lovefool” (#1, 1996)
1973 ● Joe / (Joseph Lewis Thomas) → Gospel-based R&B/smooth soul singer, “Stutter” (#1, 2001), producer
1973 ● Roisin Murphy → Irish singer with dance/funk trip hop duo Moloko “Sing It Back” (Dance/Club #1, 1999), now solo, “Movie Star” (Dance #8, 2008)
1979 ● Shane Filan → Vocals for Irish pop boy band Westlife, “Swear It Again” (#20, 2000) and 17 UK Top 10 hits
1980 ● Jason Wade → Guitar and vocals for post-grunge pop-rock Lifehouse, “Hanging On A Moment” (Billboard Song of the Year 2001) and “You And Me” (#5, 2005)
1982 ● Dave Haywood → Guitar, mandolin and songwriter for country-rock harmony group Lady Antebellum, “Need You Now” (#2, Country #1, 2009)
1985 ● Nick O’Malley → Bassist for Brit teen alt/indie rock Arctic Monkeys, “I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor” (Modern Rock #7, 2005)
1986 ● Adam Young → Keyboards, vocals and founder/frontman for electronic emo-pop one man band Owl City, “Fireflies” (#1, 2009)

July 06
1892 ● Jack Yellen / (Jack Selig Yellen) → Lyricist and screenwriter best known for penning the lyrics to pop music standards “Ain’t She Sweet” (1927) and “Happy Days Are Here Again” (1929) plus several Hollywood musicals, board member of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) from 1951 to 1969, died from natural causes on 4/17/1991, age 99
1911 ● LaVerne Sophia Andrews → Vocals and dance routines in hugely popular pre-60s all-girl sibling pop vocal trio The Andrews Sisters, “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” (#6, 1941), died on 5/8/1967, age 55
1924 ● Louie Bellson / (Luigi Paulino Alfredo Francesco Antonio Balassoni) → Influential jazz drummer, composer, bandleader, industry executive and music educator credited with developing the use of two base drums, performed with Louis Armstrong, Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman and others, fronted his own bands and recorded extensively through the 00s, died from complications of Parkinson’s disease on 2/14/2009, age 84
1925 ● Bill Haley / (William John Clifton Haley) → Early rock ‘n’ roll guitarist, singer, songwriter and bandleader (Bill Haley & The Comets) whose “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around The Clock” (#1, 1955) was the first rock ‘n’ roll song to reach #1 on the pop chart thus is considered the birth of the rock ‘n’ roll era, died from alcoholism and a brain tumor on 2/9/1981, age 55
1927 ● Fluff Freeman / (Alan Freeman, MBE) → Australian radio DJ, relocated to London in 1957 and became a popular on-air personality for the BBC and other stations over the next five decades, including as host of the Pick Of The Pops program from 1961 to 2000, died from pneumonia on 11/27/2006, age 79
1931 ● Della Reese / (Delloreese Patricia Early) → Gospel, jazz, blues and pop singer, “Don’t You Know?” (#2, 1959), TV game show panelist, talk-show host and ordained minister
1931 ● Della Reese / (Delloreese Patricia Early) → Ordained minister with California congregation, R&B/jazz-pop diva with several Top 40 hits, including “Don’t You Know?” #2, R&B #1, 1959), TV talk show host (Della, 1969-70), guest host on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, guest appearances on dozens of TV sitcoms, film star in multiple films with Redd Foxx, Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor and others, star of the TV religious supernatural drama Touched By An Angel (1994-2003), died from undisclosed causes (but likely complications of diabetes) on 11/19/2017, age 86
1932 ● Big Dee Irwin / (DiFosco T. Ervin Jr.) → Pop singer and songwriter with doo wop The Pastels (“Been So Long,” #24, R&B #4, 1958), then one hit wonder solo career and a duet version of “Swinging On A Star” with Little Eva (#38, UK #7, 1963), wrote songs for Ray Charles, Bobby Vinton, The Hollies and others, died from heart failure on 8/27/1995, age 63
1937 ● Gene Chandler / (Eugene Dixon) → R&B/doo wop and soul-pop singer with The Dukays, whose “Duke Of Earl” (#1, 1962) was credited to him as a solo artist, then solo, “Get Down” (R&B #3, 1979)
1939 ● Jet Harris / (Terence Harris) → Bassist for instrumental pop-rock The Shadows, “Apache” (Worldwide #1, 1960), then pop-rock duo with Tony Meehan, “Diamonds” (UK #1, 1963), died from throat cancer on 3/18/2011, age 71
1942 ● Izora Armstead / (Izora Rhodes Armstead) → One half of the plus-sized, late 70s R&B backing vocal duo Two Tons O’ Fun, which became one hit wonder disco-pop duo The Weather Girls and recorded the Hi-NRG, gay club anthem “It’s Raining Men” (#46, Dance #1, UK #2, 1982), continued to record and perform until her death from heart failure on 9/16/2004, age 62
1943 ● Jan BradleyChess Records one hit wonder R&B/soul singer with the Curtis Mayfield song “Mama Don’t Lie” (#14, R&B #8, 1963), wrote her own songs with marginal success and left the industry to raise a family and become a social worker
1945 ● Rik Elswit → Guitarist for AM pop-rock Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, “Sylvia’s Mother” (#5, 1972) plus nine other Top 40 hits
1947 ● Libby Titus / (Elizabeth Jurist) → Singer/songwriter with two unnoticed solo albums but with multiple credits as a writer and co-writer of numerous pop hits, including the now-standard “Love Has No Pride” by Linda Ronstadt (Adult Contemporary #23, 1973), worked with Burt Bacharach in the 70s, provided backing vocals for Martin Mull, Bonnie Raitt and others, produced albums with and for Dr. John and Donald Fagen of Steely Dan and had relationships with both, co-founded the New York Rock And Soul Review with Fagen and married him in 1993
1949 ● Michael Shrieve → Drummer and composer for Latin-rock Santana (“Black Magic Woman,” #4, 1970), known for his “electrifying” drum solo on “Soul Sacrifice” at Woodstock when he was age 20, contributed music and lyrics to four songs on the Caravanserai album (#8, 1972), left in 1974 for solo career and various jazz and fusion projects, plus session work, including The Rolling Stones‘ album Emotional Rescue (#1, 1980), later composed soundtracks for several movies, among them Apollo 13 (1995)
1949 ● Phylis Hyman → Silky voiced R&B/quiet storm ballad and light dance singer, “Can’t We Fall In Love Again” (R&B #9, 1981), committed suicide via a drug overdose hours before a scheduled performance at New York’s Apollo Theater on 6/30/1995, age 46
1952 ● David Smith → Singer for Brit Northern soul/funk The Real Thing, “You To Me Are Everything” (UK #1, 1976)
1952 ● Graham Oliver → Guitarist for early and influential New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) band Saxon, “Power And The Glory” (#32, 1983), solo
1953 ● Nanci Griffith → Grammy-winning country-folk (“folkabilly”) singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Lone Star State Of Mind” (Country #36, 1987)
1959 ● John Keeble → Drummer for New Romantic pop-rock Spandau Ballet, “True” (#4, 1983)
1961 ● Robert Heaton → Drummer and songwriter for post-punk/alt rock New Model Army, “No Rest” (UK #28, 1985), died from pancreatic cancer on 11/4/2004, age 43
1963 ● Tim Bricheno → Guitarist for goth-rock All About Eve, “Martha’s Harbour” (UK #10, 1988), goth-metal The Sisters of Mercy, “Temple Of Love” (UK #3, 1992), later XC-NN and The Mission
1965 ● Eddie Campbell → Keyboards for Scottish blues-rock Texas, “In My Heart” (Alt Rock #14, 1991)
1969 ● Michael Grant → Vocals for ska/reggae band Musical Youth, “Pass The Dutchie” (#10, 1982)
1975 ● 50 Cent / (Curtis J. Jackson III) → Controversial rapper, survived 2000 murder attempt to release “In Da Club” (#1, 2003) and 12 other Top 40 hits, Grammy-winning song “Crack A Bottle” with Eminem and others in 2009
1979 ● Nic Cester / (Nicholas John Cester) → Guitarist, lead vocals and songwriter for Aussie hard rock/garage punk Jet, “Cold Hard Bitch” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1984 ● D. Woods / (Wanite Woodgett) → Singer for MTV Making the Band program winner and pre-fab, all-girl dance-pop quintet Danity Kane, “Show Stopper” (#8, 2006)
1987 ● Kate Nash → Brit indie pop singer, songwriter and pianist, “Foundations” (UK #2, 2007)

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This Week’s Birthdays (May 26 – June 1)

Happy Birthday this week to:

May 26
1886 ● Al Jolson / (Asa Yoelson) → Pre-eminent traditional and Tin Pan Alley pop singer, Broadway actor, radio host, comedian, early sound-era movie star and self-proclaimed “World’s Greatest Entertainer,” recorded dozens of still-popular songs, including “Swanee” (1921), “April Showers” (1924) and “I’m Sitting On Top Of The World” (1927), starred in he first “talkie” film, The Jazz Singer (1927), continued to perform and record until his death from a heart attack on 10/23/1950, age 64
1904 ● George Formby / (George Hoy Booth) → Widely popular Brit stage/screen actor, singing comedian and ukulele player, recorded more than 200 albums and appeared in 20 films, best known for the song “Leaning On A Lamp Post,” died after a heart attack on 3/6/1961, age 56
1909 ● Papa Charlie McCoy / (Charles McCoy) → Delta blues guitarist and songwriter, frontman for The Mississippi Hot Footers and partner is several bands with his older brother, Kansas Joe McCoy, with whom he recorded the earliest version of the now-standard “Sweet Home Chicago,” died from paralytic brain disease on 7/26/1950, age 41
1920 ● Peggy Lee / (Norma Deloris Egstrom) → Sultry, distinctive singer, pop-jazz-big band songwriter and actress, “Fever” (#8, 1958), Grammy-winner, worked with Benny Goodman, Randy Newman, Quincy Jones and others, died from complications of diabetes and a heart attack on 1/21/2002, age 81
1922 ● Frank Guida → Sicilian-American record store owner turned songwriter and record producer credited with crafting the 60s lo-fi, dance-party “Norfolk Sound,” discovered and produced hits for doo-wop/soul Gary U.S. Bonds, including “Quarter To Three” (#1, 1961), also co-wrote and produced “If You Wanna Be Happy” for Jimmy Soul (#1, 1963), died on 5/19/2007, age 85
1926 ● Miles Davis / (Miles Dewey Davis III) → Jazz bandleader, trumpeter and composer, major influence on jazz and fusion music, 8-time Grammy winner, including his 1970 album Bitches Brew, died on 9/28/1991, age 65
1938 ● Jaki Liebezeit / (Hans Liebezeit) → Quietly influential, minimalist rock drummer and core member of early Kraut rock, experi-pop/avant-garde Can, “I Want More” (UK #26, 1976), died from pneumonia on 1/22/2017, age 78
1940 ● Levon Helm / (Mark Lavon Helm) → Arkansas farm boy, drummer and vocalist with four Canadian bandmates in seminal roots rock The Band (“Up On Cripple Creek,” #25, 1970), issued seventeen solo albums, produced albums for others, acted in nearly two dozens films, including Coal Miner’s Daughter (1980), and hosted the weekly Midnight Ramble music revue at his home near Woodstock, NY, from the late 90s until his death from cancer on 4/19/2012.
1941 ● Art Sharp → Guitar and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964)
1942 ● Ray Ennis → Vocals and guitar for British Invasionn pop-rock The Swinging Blue Jeans, “Hippy Hippy Shake” (#24, 1964)
1944 ● Verden Allen / (Terence Allen) → Keyboards for early Brit glam-rockers Mott The Hoople, “All The Young Dudes” (#37, 1972)
1945 ● Garry Peterson → Long-time drummer for Canadian rockers The Guess Who, “American Woman” (#1, 1970) and Bachman-Turner Overdrive, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” (#1, 1974)
1946 ● Ronnie Harkai → Drummer for garage/horn rock The Outsiders, “Time Won’t Let Me” (#5, 1966), now a recording engineer, producer and music consultant
1946 ● Mick Ronson / (Michael Ronson) → Guitarist, songwriter and producer, worked with David Bowie as one of the Spiders from Mars, session work for Bob Dylan, Ian Hunter, Morrissey and others, Rolling Stone magazine’s 64th greatest guitarist of all time, died of liver cancer on 4/29/1993, age 46
1948 ● Stevie Nicks / (Stephanie Lynn Nicks) → Hugely successful female rock/pop vocalist, achieved fame with blues-rock turned mega-star band Fleetwood Mac, “Go Your Own Way” (#10, 1977), successful solo career, “Talk To Me” (#4, 1985)
1949 ● Hank Williams, Jr. / (Randall Hank Williams, Jr.) → Country-rock singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Honky Tonkin'” (1982), son of country music legend Hank Williams, Sr.
1958 ● Wayne Hussey / (Jerry Lovelock) → Guitarist for New Wave dance-pop Hi-NRG group Dead Or Alive, “You Spin Me ‘Round (Like A Record)” (#11, 1985), then goth-metal The Sisters of Mercy, “Temple Of Love” (UK #3, 1992), and The Mission, “Deliverance” (Mainstream Rock #27, 1990)
1962 ● Colin Vearncombe → Frontman and singer/songwriter for Brit pop-rock Black, “Wonderful Life” (UK #8, 1987), solo
1964 ● Lenny Kravitz / (Leonard Albert Kravitz) → Grammy-winning multi-instrumental singer, songwriter, “Fly Away” (#12, 199), session musician and singer with Mick Jagger, Madonna, David Bowie and others
1966 ● Tommy Stewart → Drummer for funk metal/hard rock Extreme, “More Than Words” (#1, 1991), also with Everclear, Fuel, Halloween and other bands
1967 ● Kristen Pfaff → Bass guitarist for Minneapolis post-hardcore Janitor Joe, recruited to Seattle grunge rock girl group Hole in 1993, planned to return to Janitor Joee but died from a suspected but unconfirmed opium overdose on 6/16/1994, age 27
1968 ● Phillip Rhodes → Drummer for power-pop Gin Blossoms, “Found Out About You” (Modern Rock #1, 1994), solo
1971 ● Joey Kibble → Vocals in a cappella gospel Take 6, “I L-O-V-E U” (R&B #19, 1990)
1972 ● Alan White → Drummer (1994-2005, replacing Tony McCarroll) in Grammy-nominated Britpop Oasis, “Wonderwall” (#8, 1996), the band had 22 consecutive UK Top 10 hits
1978 ● Jaheim Hoagland → R&B/dance-pop singer, “My Place” with Nelly (#4, Rap #4, 1992)
1981 ● Isaac Slade → Co-founder, lead singer, pianist and chief songwriter of mainstream/piano rock The Fray, “How To Save A Life” (#3, 2006)

May 27
1922 ● Christopher Lee → Decorated World War II RAF veteran, 70-year film actor (mostly villainous roles or in horror films) and singer with a late-in-life career as a heavy metal vocalist, often interpreting classical pieces in a hard rock mode, issued several “symphonic metal” albums and, at age 91, became the oldest living performer to score a chart hit with his seasonal “Jingle Hell” (#18, 2013) from the album A Very Metal Christmas (2013), continued to record until just before his death on 6/7/2015, age 93
1932 ● Junior Parker / (Hermon Parker, Jr.) → Memphis blues/soul vocalist, “Driving Wheel” (R&B #5, 1961), co-wrote Elvis Presley‘s “Mystery Train” (Country #11, 1956), died during surgery to remove a brain tumor on 11/18/1971
1935 ● Ramsey Lewis → Grammy-winning jazz/pop pianist, bandleader and composer, “The In Crowd” (#5, 1965)
1939 ● Don Williams / (Donald Ray Williams) → Country’s “Gentle Giant,” mild-mannered, deep baritone mainstream countrypolitan singer and songwriter with 17 Country #1 hits, including “I Believe In You” (#24, Country #1, 1980), his songs have been covered by Eric Clapton (“Tulsa Time,” #30, 1980), Bonnie Raitt, Pete Townshend and multiple others, died from emphysema on 9/8/2017, age 78
1943 ● Cilla Black / (Priscilla Maria Veronica White) → Working-girl-made-good Swinging Sixties light pop Brit singer, actress and TV/radio personality with a 50-year career in music and entertainment, recorded 11 UK Top 10 singles, including “You’re My World” (#26, UK #1, 1964), hosted or guested on various BBC TV programs through the early 10s, died following a fall and stroke on 8/1/2015, age 72
1944 ● Billy Adamson → Drummer for Merseybeat band The Searchers, “Needles And Pins” (#13, 1963), retired from the band in 1998 and died from undisclosed causes on 11/11/2013, age 69
1945 ● Bruce Cockburn → Canadian folk-rock singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Wondering Where The Lions Are” (#21, 1980)
1947 ● Marty Kristian → Guitar and vocals for folk-sunshine pop The New Seekers, “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing” (#7, 1972)
1947 ● Peter Knight → Violin for Brit electric folk-rock revival band Steeleye Span, “All Around My Hat” (UK #5, 1975)
1948 ● Pete Sears → Journeyman bassist and keyboardist, session work for Rod Stewart in 70s, 1974-1987 with Jefferson Starship, “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us” (#1, 1987), then Hot Tuna, David Nelson Band, Moonalice and session work
1949 ● James Mitchell → Vocals for R&B/soul quartet The Detroit Emeralds, “Baby Let Me Take You (In My Arms)” (#24, R&B #4, 1972), left to co-found R&B/quiet storm The Floaters, “Float On” (#2, 1977)
1957 ● Eddie Harsch → Keyboards for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1957 ● Siouxsie Sioux / (Susan Dallion) → Vocals and frontwoman for punk then dance-rock Siouxsie & The Banshees, “Kiss Them For Me”, (#23, 1991), side project The Creatures, “Right Now” (UK #14, 1983)
1958 ● Neil Finn → Guitar, vocals and songwriting for Aussie New Wave pop-rock Split Enz, “I Got You” (#53, UK #12, 1980), left to form Crowded House, “Don’t Dream It’s Over” (#2, 1987), solo and Finn Brothers, “Won’t Give In” (UK #6, 2004)
1966 ● Sean Kinney → Drummer in alterna-metal/hard rock Alice In Chains, “No Excuses” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1994)
1971 ● Left Eye Lopes / (Lisa Nicole Lopes) → Vocals for R&B/urban soul-dance-pop girl trio TLC, “Creep” (#1, 1994), died in a car accident on 4/25/2002, age 30
1975 ● André 3000 / (André Benjamin) → Half of hip hop duo OutKast, “Ms. Jackson” (#1, 2001) and “Hey Ya” (#1, 2004), solo

May 28
1910 ● T. Bone Walker / (Aaron Thibeaux Walker) → Electric blues pioneer, “Stormy Monday” (1947), influenced Albert Collins, B. B. King, Buddy Guy, Freddie King and many others, #47 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists list, died of bronchial pneumonia following a stoke on 3/16/1975, age 64
1917 ● Papa John Creach / (John Henry Creach) → Fiddler for 60s psych-rock Jefferson Airplane, “Somebody To Love” (#5, 1967), then folk-rock Hot Tuna and mainstream arena rock Jefferson Starship, “Miracles” (#3, 1975), died after suffering a heart attack during the Northridge earthquake on 2/22/1994, age 76
1929 ● Sonny Burgess / (Albert Austin Burgess) → The “Arkansas Wild Man,” freewheeling Sun Records boogie woogie and rockabilly singer, guitarist and frontman for The Pacers (“We Wanna Boogie,” 1956), chart success eluded him but he performed and recorded for four decades (except for a stint as a sewing supplies salesman in the 70s), hosted a weekly rockabilly nostalgia radio show in Arkansas in the 90s, fell in his home and died a month later on 8/18/2017, age 88
1943 ● Tony Mansfield → Drummer for 60s British Invasion pop-rock Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas, “Little Children” (#7, 1964)
1944 ● Billy Vera / (William McCord, Jr.) → Rock historian, songwriter and singer, duet with Judy Clay, “Storybook Children” (#20, 1968) and solo as frontman for pop-rock The Beaters, “At This Moment” (#1, 1986), featured on the TV show Family Ties
1944 ● Gladys Knight → The “Empress of Soul”, Grammy-winning R&B vocals and frontwoman for The Pips, “Midnight Train To Georgia” (#1, 1973), solo
1944 ● Gary Stewart → Outlaw country singer and songwriter mixing honky tonk and Southern rock sounds for nine Country Top 20 among nearly 30 charting songs, including “She’s Actin’ Single (I’m Drinkin’ Doubles)” (Country #1, 1975), collaborated with Gregg Allman and Dicky Betts on Cactus And A Rose (1980), committed suicide a month after the death of his wife of 43 years on 12/16/2003, age 59
1945 ● John Fogerty → Frontman, songwriter, guitar and vocals for roots rock/”swamp” rock Creedence Clearwater Revival, “Down On The Corner” (#3, 1969), Grammy-winning solo career (album Centerfield, #1, 1985) and bandleader for The Blue Ridge Rangers
1946 ● Stacy Sutherland / (Stacy Keith Sutherland) → Guitarist and songwriter in legendary Austin, Texas acid/garage rock The 13th Floor Elevators (the first band to use the term to describe their music – and their LSD/stoner lifestyle), the band’s 3-year stint led to four albums, seven singles and a lone charting hit (“You’re Gonna Miss Me,” #55, 1966), left in 1969 to form his own group (Ice), spend times behind bars and fall deeper into drug and alcohol addiction, his estranged wife Bunny accidentally shot and killed him during a domestic dispute on 8/24/1978, age 32.
1948 ● Ray Laidlaw → Drummer for Brit folk-rock Brethren, which became Lindisfarne, “Lady Eleanor” (UK #3, 1971)
1949 ● Wendy O. Williams → Mohawk hairdo-sporting, controversial singer and frontwoman for outrageous punk/heavy metal Plasmatics, “Butcher Baby” (UK #55, 1980), solo, actress in sexploitation film Reform School Girls (1986), committed suicide on 4/6/1998, age 48
1952 ● JoJo Billingsley / (Deborah Jo Billingsley White) → Backing vocals for raunchy Southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Sweet Home Alabama” (#8, 1974), only bandmember not aboard the fatal flight on 10/20/1977, claimed to have been born again by the event and turned to Christian music, died from cancer on 6/24/2010, age 58
1955 ● Eddie Jobson / (Edwin Jobson) → Respected journeyman violinist and synthesizer player with Frank Zappa‘s band, long-lived Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973), Roxy Music, U.K., Yes, solo
1955 ● John McGeoch → Scottish guitarist, singer and co-founder of post-punk Magazine, “Shot By Both Sides” (UK #41, 1978), then with punk then dance-rock Siouxsie & The Banshees, “Kiss Them For Me”, (#23, 1991), Armoury Show and Public Image Ltd., died in his sleep ion 3/4/2004, age 48
1959 ● Steve Strange / (Stephen Harrington) → Frontman and vocals for New Romantic synth-pop Visage, “Fade To Grey” (UK #8, 1980), nightclub host and promoter
1961 ● Roland Gift → Lead singer for Fine Young Cannibals, “She Drives Me Crazy” (#1, 1989)
1964 ● Wes Burt-Martin → Guitarist for folk-pop Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians, “What I Am” (# , 1989)
1965 ● Chris Ballew → Co-founder, bass and vocals for post-grunge alt rock The Presidents Of The United States Of America, “Lump” (Mainstream Rock #7, 1995), currently performs children’s music under the pseudonym Caspar Babypants
1968 ● Kylie Minogue → Grammy-winning, widely-popular Aussie pop singer, songwriter and actress, “The Loco-Motion” (#3, 1988)
1970 ● Jimi Goodwin → Vocals, bass and guitar for dance-pop/house music Sub Sub, “Ain’t No Love (Ain’t No Use)” (UK #3, 1993), disbanded and reformed as alt rock Doves, “There Goes The Fear” (UK #3, 2002)
1970 ● Mark Richardson → Drummer for Brit alt rock/metal Skunk Anansie, “All I Want” (UK #14, 1996)
1981 ● Mark Feehily → Vocals for Irish pop boy band Westlife, “Swear It Again” (#20, 2000) and 17 UK Top 10 hits
1985 ● Colbie Caillat → Pop singer and guitarist, “Bubbly” (2007), daughter of Ken Caillat who co-produced Fleetwood Mac‘s Rumours and Tusk albums

May 29
1939 ● Sir Monti Rock III / (Joseph Montanez Jr.) → Flamboyant Puerto Rican-American performer, musician and 60s TV entertainment show guest, opened the disco era with the LP Disco Tex And His Sex-O-Lettes (1975) with producer Bob Crewe (The Four Seasons), scored the hit “Get Dancin'” (#10, 1975) and several others, performed on the Vegas club circuit through the 00s
1941 ● Roy Crewsdon → Guitarist for British Invasion novelty/comedy pop-rock ‘n’ roll Freddie & The Dreamers, “I’m Telling You Now” (#1, 1965), now operates a bar in Tenerife
1945 ● Gary Brooker → Chief songwriter, keyboardist and vocals for prog/psych rock Procol Harum, “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” (#5, 1967), solo plus session work for Eric Clapton
1947 ● Joey Levine → Unabashed bubblegum pop music songwriter, record producer and vocalist, as part of the Jerry Kasenetz/Jeffrey Katz team sang lead vocals for studio group Ohio Express (“Yummy Yummy Yummy,” #4, 1968) and other groups comprised of studio musicians, wrote and produced multiple pop hits by The 1910 Fruitgum Company, The Music Explosion and others, formed his own branding company and wrote jingles for national or global brands including Pepsi, Chevrolet and Anheuser-Busch
1947 ● Junior Campbell / (William Campbell, Jr.) → Lead guitar for pop/rock the Gaylords, then Marmalade, “Reflections Of My Life” (#10, 1970)
1947 ● Larry Harris / (Larry Alan Harris) → Music industry executive and co-founder of Casablanca Records with his second cousin, Neil Bogart, signed and launched the careers of Kiss, Donna Summer, Village People and others, plus less flamboyant acts as Cher, funk band Parliament, and comedians Robin Williams and Rodney Dangerfield, left after the disco craze ended and the label fell into decline to work for other labels and open a comedy club in Seattle, died from an abdominal aneurysm on 122/18/2017, age 70
1949 ● Francis Rossi → Co-founder and lead guitarist for Brit psych-boogie rock Status Quo, “Pictures Of Matchstick Men” (#12, 1968), solo
1950 ● Rebbie Jackson / (Maureen Reillette Jackson Brown) → Eldest of the Jackson family of musicians, performed with her brothers beginning in 1974 on stage and on the TV variety show The Jacksons, issued four solo albums and charted several singles, including “Centipede” (#24, R&B #4, 1984)
1952 ● Karl Bartos → Percussionist for German electro-rock pioneers Kraftwerk, “Autobahn” (#25, 1975), left in 1990 for solo career and collaborations
1953 ● Danny Elfman → Grammy-winning TV and film score composer, frequently in collaboration with Tim Burton (Batman, 1989), singer/songwriter and leader of New Wave ska-pop/alt rock Oingo Boingo, “Weird Science” (#45, Dance/Club #21, 1985)
1955 ● Mike Porcaro → Session musician who joined his brothers Jeff and Steve Porcaro in 1982 as bassist in pop/arena rock Toto (“Africa,” #1, 1982), retired from the band in 2007 and died from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, on 3/15/2015, age 59
1956 ● La Toya Jackson → Background vocals for her brothers’ band The Jackson 5, then largely unsuccessful and unnoticed solo singing career
1959 ● Danny Pearson / (Daniel Pearson) → Bassist for critically acclaimed but light selling alt pop-rock American Music Club (1991 album Everclear)
1959 ● Mel Gaynor → Drummer for Scottish New Wave pop-rock Simple Minds, “(Don’t You) Forget About Me” (#1, 1985)
1960 ● Jesse Johnson → Guitarist for R&B/soul-funk The Time, wrote “Jungle Love” (#20, Dance/Club #9, 1984), then solo, “Crazay” (Dance/Club #12, 1986)
1961 ● David Palmer → Drummer for New Wave synth-pop ABC, “Be Near Me” (#9, 1982)
1961 ● Melissa Etheridge → Grammy-winning alt-heartland rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “I’m The Only One” (#8, 1993), gay activist
1962 ● John Pedder → Bassist in Brit lounge/melodramatic pop group Babybird, “You’re Gorgeous” (UK #3, 1996)
1963 ● Blaze Bayley / (Bayley Alexander Cooke) → Lead vocalist for heavy metal Wolfsbane from 1984 to 1994, Iron Maiden (“The Angel And The Gambler”, Mainstream Rock #24, 1998) from 1994 to 1999, solo and frontman for Blaze
1964 ● Fresh Kid Ice / (Christopher Wong Won) → Asian-American rapper of Trinidadian and Chinese decent, founding member of notorious hip hop group 2 Live Crew (“Banned In The USA,” #20, Rap #1, 1990), their sexually-explicit lyrics resulted in arrests and sparked a national debate about obscenity and the legal limits of artistic expression, died from an unspecified “medical condition” at a Veterans Administration hospital on 7/13/2017, age 53
1967 ● Noel Gallagher → Singer, songwriter and guitarist for Grammy-nominated Brit pop Oasis, “Wonderwall” (#8, 1996), the band had 22 consecutive UK Top 10 hits
1969 ● Chad Kinchla / (Chandler Kinchla) → Guitarist for blues-rock jam band Blues Traveler, “Run-Around” (#8, 1995)
1975 ● Melanie Brown → Vocals and “Scary Spice” in pop-rock girl-group Spice Girls, “Wannabe” (#1, 1997)
1976 ● Dave Buckner → Founding member and original drummer for alt metal/rap metal Papa Roach (“Scars, #15, Alt Rock #2, 2004), left the band in 2007 for rehabilitation
1978 ● Daniel Pearce → Vocals in teen pop boy band One True Voice, “Sacred Trust / After You’re Gone” (UK #2, 2002)
1980 ● Andrew John Hurley → Drummer for alt rock/punk-pop Fall Out Boy, “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race” (#2, 2007)

May 30
1909 ● Benny Goodman → The “King of Swing” and most popular figure of the early Swing Era bandleaders, clarinetist, film actor (playing himself), died from a heart attack on 6/13/1986, age 77
1915 ● Maxine Powell → African American child actress turned finishing school owner who became the etiquette and style coach for Berry Gordy‘s Motown Records in the 60s, the only such training program offered at any record label at any time, died after a long period of declining health on 10/14/2013, age 98
1926 ● Johnny Gimble → Grammy-winning virtuoso country and Western swing fiddler, played with Bob Wills And His Texas Playboys in the 50s, as a session musician appeared on numerous albums by Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Chet Atkins and others in the 60s, toured with Willie Nelson, worked with Asleep At The Wheel and acted in films and on TV in the 70s and 80s, died following a stroke on 5/9/2015, age 88
1928 ● Herb Oscar Anderson / (Herbert Oscar Anderson) → Beloved, crooning Top 40 music radio DJ, member of the “Swingin’ 7” team of announcers on world-famous WABC-am in New York City during the 60s, left when 60s pop turned to 70s harder rock, continued to host music radio programs in different markets, including a weekly show on a Vero Beach, Florida station until his death from kidney failure on 1/29/2017, age 88
1944 ● Lenny Davidson → Guitarist and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock Dave Clark Five, “Catch Us If You Can” (#4, 1965) and 11 other Top 25 hits in the US
1944 ● Gladys Horton → Founder and lead vocals for Motown pop-soul girl group The Marvelettes, “Please Mr. Postman” (#1, 1961) and nine other Top 40 singles, died following a stroke on 1/26/2011, age 66
1955 ● Topper Headon / (Nicholas Bowen Headon) → Drummer and occasional vocals for influential and acclaimed punk-ska-dance-rock The Clash, wrote “Rock The Casbah” (#8, 1982)
1958 ● Marie Fredriksson → Vocals for Swedish pop-rock duo Roxette, “The Look” (#1, 1989), solo
1960 ● Stephen Duffy → Founding member, guitarist, vocals and songwriting for New Wave synth-pop Duran Duran, “Hungry Like The Wolf” (#3, 1982)
1964 ● Tom Morello → Guitarist for Grammy-winning punk/hip hop/thrash metal Rage Against The Machine, “Guerrilla Radio” (Modern Rock #6, 1999)
1964 ● Wynonna Judd / (Christina Ciminella) → Country singer/songwriter in duo The Judds (with mother Naomi), “Girl’s Night Out” (Country #1, 1984) and 17 other Top 10 country hits, solo, “To Be Loved By You” (Adult Contemporary #25, Country #1, 1996)
1967 ● Sven Pipien → Bassist for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1968 ● Tim Burgess → Vocals for “Madchester” alt rock The Charlatans UK, “The Only One I Know” (Mainstream Rock #37, 1991), solo
1971 ● Patrick Dalheimer → Bassist for alt rock Live, “Lightning Crashes” (Modern Rock #5, 1995) and The Gracious Few
1974 ● Cee Lo Green / (Thomas Callaway) → Singer, rapper, songwriter and record producer, member of pioneering Dirty South rap group Goodie Mob, “Cell Therapy” (#13, Rap #1, 1995), then Gnarls Barkley, “Crazy” (#2, 2006) and solo, “F**k You” (#2, 2010)

May 31
1930 ● Clint Eastwood / (Clinton Eastwood, Jr.) → Wannabe jazz pianist turned globally-acclaimed actor, film director, politician and film score composer, wrote the music to Mystic River (2003), Flags Of Our Fathers (2006) and J. Edgar (2011), among other films, co-wrote “Why Should I Care” (1999) for Diana Krall, nominated for or won numerous awards for other music compositions
1935 ● Herb Alpert / (Herbert Alpert) → Nine time Grammy-winning trumpeter, composer and bandleader for The Tijuana Brass, the only artist to top the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart with a vocal single (“This Guy’s In Love With You,” #1, 1968) and an instrumental song (“Rise,” #1, 1979), founder and former executive of A&M Records with partner Jerry Moss
1936 ● Gayle Shepherd / (Joyce Gayle Shepherd) → With three of her sisters, vocals in 50s-60s one hit wonder girl group The Shepherd Sisters, “Alone (Why Must I Be Alone)” (#18, 1957) was their lone charting song despite multiple appearances on American Bandstand and several years touring with Alan Freed‘s America’s Greatest Teenage Recording Stars show, retired from the music industry in the mid-60s to start a family, died from dementia on 5/7/2018, age 81
1938 ● Peter Yarrow → Vocals and guitar for seminal folk trio Peter, Paul & Mary, “Puff (The Magic Dragon)” (#2, 1963)
1938 ● Johnny Paycheck / (Donald Eugene Lytle) → Gruff-voiced “outlaw” country music singer with 21 Country Top 20 hits, mostly in the 70s, best known for rendition of “Take This Job And Shove It” (Country #1, 1978), his career was cut short by drug, alcohol and prison troubles, died in Nashville from emphysema on 2/19/2003, age 64
1940 ● Augie Meyers / (August Meyers) → Founding member of early country-rock Sir Douglas Quintet (“She’s About A Mover,” #13, 1965) and later the Tejano (fusion of rock, country and various Mexican styles) supergroupTexas Tornados with Doug Sahm, Freddy Fender and Flaco Jimenez
1943 ● Wayne Carson / (Wayne Head) → Grammy-winning country and pop songwriter, musician and record producer, wrote “Somebody Like Me” (#53, Country #1, 1966) for Eddy Arnold and “The Letter” (#11, 1967) for The Box Tops, co-wrote “Always On My Mind” which has been recorded over 300 times, most notably by Willie Nelson (#5, Country #1, 1982), died from congestive heart failure on 7/20/2015, age 72
1948 ● Bonzo Bonham / (John Henry Bonham) → Original drummer for influential hard rock Led Zeppelin, “Whole Lotta Love” (#4, 1970), #1 on Rolling Stone magazine’s readers’ poll of the “best drummers of all time”, died after choking on his own vomit on 9/25/1980, age 32
1954 ● Vicki Sue Robinson → Theater and film actress turned one hit wonder R&B/disco singer, “Turn The Beat Around” (#10, 1976), died of cancer on 4/27/2000, age 45
1962 ● Corey Hart → Canadian singer/songwriter with 27 Canada Top 40 hits, including “Never Surrender” (#3, Canada #1, 1985)
1963 ● Wendy Smith → Guitar and vocals for Brit pop-rock Prefab Sprout, “If You Don’t Love Me” (Dance/Club #3, 1992)
1964 ● D.M.C. / (Darryl McDaniels) → MC and rapper for premier hardcore rap group Run-D.M.C., “Walk This Way” (#4, 1986)
1964 ● Scotti Hill / (Scott Lawrence Mulvehill) → Longtime guitarist, vocalist and songwriter for New Jersey-based hair metal/pop-metal Skid Row (“I Remember You,” #6, 1989)
1965 ● Steve White → Drummer for sophisti-pop-soul The Style Council, “My Ever Changing Moods” (#29, UK #5, 1984), then sessions, The Players, Trio Valore and stand-in for drummer/brother Alan White of Oasis for several shows

June 01
1921 ● Nelson Riddle → Jazz, blues, swing and pop composer, orchestrator, bandleader, producer and arranger for Frank Sinatra, Linda Ronstadt and others, died from liver failure on 10/6/1985, age 64
1925 ● Hazel Dickens → Bluegrass singer, songwriter and guitarist known for her pro-union and feminist songs and activism in support of coal miners, one of the first women to release a bluegrass album, appeared in the documentary film Harlan County, USA and contributed four songs to the film’s soundtrack, died from complications of pneumonia on 4/22/2011, age 85
1934 ● Pat Boone → Adult contemporary pop and later gospel singer, TV host, author, Billboard magazine’s second biggest charting artist of the 1950s behind Elvis Presley, “Love Letters In The Sand (#1, 1957)
1945 ● James William McCarty → Blues-rock and rock ‘n’ roll guitarist with Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels, Jenny Take A Ride” (#10, 1966), funk-rock Buddy Miles Express, hard/boogie rock supergroup Cactus, blues-rock The Rockets, formed Mystery Train
1945 ● Linda Scott / (Linda Joy Sampson) → Brill Building early 60s pop singer, “I’ve Told Ev’ry Little Star” (#3, 1961)
1947 ● Ron Wood → Guitarist for Jeff Beck Group, then raunch-rock The Faces, “Stay With Me” (#17, 1971), in 1975 joined The Rolling Stones, “Miss You” (#1, 1978)
1949 ● Michael Stephen Levine → Bassist and keyboardist for Canadian power rock trio Triumph (“All The Way,” Mainstream Rock #2, 1983), left the band to pursue other interests in 1993, returned in 2008 and still tours
1950 ● Charlene Marilyn D’Angelo → One hit wonder R&B/soul-pop singer, “I’ve Never Been To Me” (#3, 1982)
1950 ● Graham Russell → Guitar and vocals for Aussie light pop-rock Air Supply, “The One That You Love” (#1, 1981)
1950 ● Tom Robinson → Bassist, bandleader, singer and songwriter, first acoustic folk-rock Café Society, then fronting the punk/hard politicized rock Tom Robinson Band, “2-4-6-8 Motorway” (UK #5, 1977) and “Glad To Be Gay” (1978), then Sector 27 and solo, “War Baby” (UK #6, 1983)
1952 ● John Ellis → Guitarist for punk-rock The Vibrators, “Automatic Lover” (UK #35, 1978)
1953 ● Ronnie Dunn → Singer and songwriter, one-half of astronomically successful country-pop vocal duo Brooks & Dunn, “Ain’t Nothing ‘Bout You” (#25, Country #1, 2001), solo
1958 ● Barry Adamson → Bassist for post-punk Magazine, “Shot By Both Sides” (UK #41, 1978), New Romantic synth-pop Visage, “Fade To Grey” (UK #8, 1980), alt rock Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds, “Where The Wild Roses Grow” (Australia #2, UK #11, 1995), solo
1959 ● Alan Wilder → Vocals and keyboards for electro-dance/synth-pop Depeche Mode, “Enjoy The Silence” (#8, 1990), then founder and frontman for experimental electro-synth art rock Recoil, producer
1960 ● Simon Gallup → Bassist for post-punk art-glam-goth rock The Cure, “Friday I’m In Love” (Modern Rock #1, 1992)
1963 ● Mike Joyce → Drummer for definitive Brit indie rock The Smiths, “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” (UK #10, 1984)
1967 ● Roger Sanchez → Grammy-winning House music DJ, “Lost” (Dance/Club #1, 2006), producer
1968 ● Jason Donovan → Aussie TV soap opera actor and teen idol singer, “Especially For You” (Australia #2, UK #1, 1988)
1968 ● Stefani Sargent → Founding member and guitarist for Seattle grunge/punk girl group 7 Year Bitch (“Antidisestablishmentarianism,” 1992), died at the onset of the band’s peak potential after asphyxiating on her own vomit while passed out from alcohol and heroin on 6/27/1992, age 24
1969 ● Damon Minchella → Bassist for Britpop/trad rock Ocean Colour Scene, “The Day We Caught The Train” (UK #4, 1996) plus 16 other UK Top 40 singles
1974 ● Alanis Morissette → Canadian-American teenage dance-pop singer turned Grammy-winning alt rock singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Ironic” (#4, Mainstream Rock #1, 1996) from the album Jagged Little Pill, the #1 selling album of the 90s

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This Week’s Birthdays (May 12 – 18)

Happy Birthday this week to:

May 12
1928 ● Burt Bacharach → Pianist, arranger, producer and songwriter, wrote 70 Top 40 hits, often in collaboration with lyricist Hal David, including “(They Long To Be) Close To You” for the Carpenters (#1, 1970), “Walk On By” for Dionne Warwick (#6, 1964), won two Oscars for film score to Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid (1969) and for “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head” from the soundtrack (B. J. Thomas, #1, 1969)
1935 ● Steve Knight → Keyboards in pioneering hard rock/heavy metal band Mountain (“Mississippi Queen,” #21, 1970), after the band broke up in 1972 he returned to traditional jazz, songwriting and miscellaneous projects until his death from complications of Parkinson’s disease on 1/19/2013, age 77
1936 ● Klaus Doldinger → German jazz-rock fusion saxophonist, composer and bandleader (Passport)
1937 ● George Carlin → Five-time Grammy-winning counterculture stand-up comedian, film and TV actor, sociopolitical commentator and author, his landmark “Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television” routine was central to the 1978 Supreme Court case upholding the FCC’s right to regulate indecent material on public airwaves, appeared in films and on TV, and issued albums of new material until his death from heart failure on 6/22/2008, age 71
1940 ● Norman Whitfield → Songwriter and producer, best known for his work with Motown Records, collaborated with Barrett Strong on “I Heard It Through The Grapevine”, “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg”, “(I Know) I’m Losing You”, “Cloud Nine”, “War”, “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” and “Car Wash,” died from complications of diabetes on 9/16/2008, age 68
1942 ● Billy Swan / (William Lance Swan) → Country-pop singer/songwriter, touring band member for Kris Kristofferson, producer, solo artist, “I Can Help” (#1, 1974), joined ex-Eagles Randy Meisner in country-rock Black Tie
1942 ● Ian Dury → Cult-favorite singer, songwriter, poet, actor, bandleader (The Blockheads), solo, “Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll” (1977) and “Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick” (UK #1, 1978), died of colorectal cancer on 3/27/2000, age 57
1943 ● David Walker → Guitarist with pop-rock Gary Lewis & The Playboys “This Diamond Ring” (#1, 1965) plus 11 other US Top 40 hits between 1965 and 1968
1944 ● James Purify → With cousin Robert Lee Dickey, R&B/Southern soul duo James & Bobby Purify, “I’m Your Puppet” (#6, 1966)
1945 ● Jayotis Washington → Vocalist with a cappella The Persuasions, “Chain Gang” (1971), session work for Don McLean, Joni Mitchell, Stevie Wonder and others
1945 ● Ian McLagan → Keyboardist for Brit raunch/psych-pop-rock The Small Faces, “Itchycoo Park” (#16, 1968), after Steve Marriott departed and Rod Stewart and Rod Wood joined, renamed The Faces, “Stay With Me” (#17, 1971), session work for Joe Cocker, Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Lucinda Williams and others, died after a stroke on 12/3/2014, age 69
1946 ● Bob MacVittie → Rhythm guitar for one hit wonder pop-rock Sugarloaf, “Green-Eyed Lady” (#3, 1970)
1948 ● Steve Winwood → Keyboards, vocals and songwriter, teenaged lead singer for Brit pop-rock Spencer Davis Group, “Gimme Some Lovin”” (#7, 1967), then folk-psych-rock Traffic, “Paper Sun” (#94, UK #5, 1967), then super-trio Blind Faith (US #1 album Blind Faith, 1969), solo, “Higher Love” (#1, 1986)
1950 ● Billy Squier → 80s hard pop-rock anthem and balladeer guitarist and singer, “The Stroke” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1981)
1950 ● Jocko Marcellino / (John Marcellino) → Vocals for “greaser” revival parody rock-and-doo-wop Sha Na Na (“(Just Like) Romeo And Juliet,” #55, 1975)
1954 ● Barry Borden → Brief stint in the 80s as drummer for Southern rock power-guitar band Molly Hatchet, “Flirtin’ With Disaster” (#42, 1979)
1955 ● Kix Brooks / (Leon Eric Brooks) → Singer and songwriter, one-half of astronomically successful country-pop vocal duo Brooks & Dunn, “Ain’t Nothing ‘Bout You” (#25, Country #1, 2001), solo
1958 ● Eric Singer / (Eric Mesinger) → Hard rock journeyman drummer for Lita Ford, Black Sabbath, Badlands, Paul Stanley‘s touring band, Kiss and Alice Cooper
1961 ● Billy Duffy → Vocalist, guitarist and songwriter for punk-rock Theater Of Hate, then co-founded hard rock/metal revival The Cult, “Fire Woman” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1989)
1962 ● Brett W. Gurewitz → Co-founder, guitarist and songwriter for hardcore punk Bad Religion, “Infected” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1995), owner of Epitaph Records
1972 ● Mark Morrison → German-born electro-dance-pop singer, “Moan And Groan” (#2, 1997)

May 13
1912 ● Gil Evans → Grammy-winning Canadian jazz pianist, innovator, arranger and bandleader best known for his extensive work with Miles Davis and the development of free jazz and jazz-rock fusion, died while recovering from peritonitis surgery on 3/20/1988, age 75
1926 ● Daddy-O Phillips / (Dewey Phillips) → The “King of Memphis Radio” and one of the earliest rock ‘n’ roll DJ’s on par with Cleveland’s Alan Freed, played black and white music, R&B, pop and jazz punctuated with frenetic, demented-hillbilly delivery that kept him on top for a decade, could not make the transition to Top 40 in the 60s, died from years of drug and alcohol abuse on 9/28/1968, age 42
1927 ● Fred Hellerman → Folk singer, guitarist, songwriter and producer, suspected McCarthy-era Communist sympathizer, founding member of left-leaning, influential, successful folk-pop The Weavers (“Goodnight Irene,” #1, 1950) and key figure in the folk revival movement of the 50s, produced several albums for others, including Arlo Guthrie‘s Alice’s Restaurant (1967), issued his only solo album, Caught In The Act in 2005, died from natural causes on 9/1/2016, age 89
1935 ● Teddy Randazzo / (Theodore Alexander Randazzo) → Singer, songwriter and pop music arranger best known for co-writing “Going Out Of My Head” for Little Anthony & The Imperials (#6, 1964) and “Hurts So Bad” (#8 , 1980) for Linda Ronstadt, died of natural causes on 11/21/2003, age 68
1938 ● John Smith → Bass vocals for one hit wonder R&B/doo wop sextet The Monotones, “(Who Wrote) The Book Of Love” (#5, 1958)
1941 ● Joe Brown → Stage and TV actor, BBC radio host, early Brit rock ‘n’ roll singer and guitarist, “A Picture Of You” (UK #2, 1962), still performs after nearly 60 years of rocking
1941 ● Ritchie Valens / (Ricardo Valenzuela Reyes) → Singer, songwriter, guitarist, promising early rock ‘n’ roller and the first Latino pop star, released the Top 5 hit “Donna” (#2, 1958) and the enduring “La Bamba” (#22, 1959) just months before he died along with Buddy Holly and J. R. “The Big Bopper” Richardson in an Iowa plane crash on the night of 2/3/1959, age 17
1943 ● Mary WellsMotown R&B/soul-pop singer, “My Guy” (#1, 1964) and 17 other R&B Top 20 singles (five of which made the Pop Top 20), died of cancer on 7/26/1992, age 49
1945 ● Blue Lou Mairini / (Louis Marini, Jr. ) → Jazz, blues and rock saxophonist with Blood, Sweat & Tears, the Saturday Night Live house band, The Blues Brothers, “Soul Man” (#14, 1979), solo
1945 ● Magic Dick / (Richard Salwitz) → Harmonica and organ for boogie-blues-rock ‘n roll bar band J. Geils Band, “Centerfold” (#1, 1982)
1947 ● Peter Watts / (Peter Overend Watts) → Bassist for early Brit glam-rockers Mott The Hoople, “All The Young Dudes” (#37, 1972), producer
1950 ● Danny Kirwan / (Daniel David Kirwan) → Guitarist and songwriter with early lineups of Fleetwood Mac (1968-72) and during the band’s transition from blues-rock stalwarts to pop-rock megastars, left before the band achieved superstardom and enjoyed a moderately successful solo career before fading into obscurity outside the music industry, died from undisclosed causes on 06/10/2018, age 68
1950 ● Johnny Logan / (Seán Patrick Michael Sherrard) → Aussie-born Irish singer, songwriter, three-time Eurovision winner and guitarist, “What’s Another Year” (UK #1, 1980)
1950 ● Stevie Wonder / (Stevland Hardaway Judkins) → Teenaged Motown R&B/soul singer (“Fingertips,” #1, 1963) turned Grammy-winning soul-pop singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist with 15 #1 albums and over 30 Top 40 singles (nine #1 hits) including “Superstition” (#1, 1973)
1951 ● Paul Thompson → Drummer for prog rock Roxy Music, “Love Is The Drug” (#30, 1976) and post-punk alt rock Concrete Blonde, “Joey” (Modern Rock #1, 1990)
1959 ● Kim McAuliffe → Founding member, vocals and rhythm guitar for early all-girl heavy metal group Painted Lady, which became Girlschool, “Hit And Run” (UK #32, 1981)
1963 ● Julian Brookhouse → Guitarist for Brit teen-pop blue-eyed soul Curiosity Killed The Cat, “Down To Earth” (UK #3, 1986)
1964 ● Lorraine McIntosh → Vocalist for Scottish indie pop-rock Deacon Blue, “Real Gone Kid” (UK #8, 1988), married to lead singer Ricky Ross
1966 ● Alison Goldfrapp → Vocals and synthesizer with Will Gregory in Brit electro-dance-pop due Goldfrapp, “Number 1” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)
1966 ● Darius Rucker → Vocals, rhythm guitar and harmonica for 90s pop-rock quartet Hootie & The Blowfish, “Only Wanna Be With You” (#6, 1995), solo
1967 ● Melanie Thornton → African American R&B/gospel and dance-pop singer with very little attention in the U.S. but with a moderately successful and growing career in Europe, particularly in Germany, died in a commercial plane crash in Switzerland on 11/24/2001, age 34
1979 ● Michael Madden → Bassist for alt funk-rock Maroon 5, “She Will Be Loved” (#5, 2004)

May 14
1916 ● Skip Martin / (Lloyd Martin) → Jazz and Big Band saxophonist, music arranger and orchestrator, played in the Glenn Miller Orchestra and other big band’s and became a studio musician and arranger for Hollywood films in the 50s, including Judy Garland‘s comeback movie A Star Is Born (1954), died on 2/12/1976, age 59
1932 ● Bob Johnston → Rockabilly and pop-rock songwriter, co-wrote numerous songs for Elvis Presley in the mid-60s, then produced a string of classic albums in the late 60s and 70s, including Bob Dylan‘s Blonde On Blonde and Johnny Cash‘s At Folsom Prison, fell into relative obscurity in the 80s and 90s but continued to produce independent albums, died from heart failure on 8/14/2015 , age 83
1936 ● Charlie Gracie / (Charles Graci) → Rockabilly and pop-rock guitarist and songwriter, Philadelphia’s first rock ‘n roll star and an American Bandstand regular, “Butterfly” (#1, 1957)
1936 ● Bobby Darin / (Walden Robert Cassotto) → Film actor (Come September, 1961), musician, adult pop vocalist, “Mack The Knife” (#1, 1959) and 20 other Top 40 singles, husband of actress/singer Sandra Dee,, died after open heat surgery to repair damaged valves on 12/20/1973, age 37
1938 ● Mike Preston / (Jack Davies) → Boxer turned pop singer, “Mr. Blue” (UK #12, 1959) turned Aussie and US TV/film actor, The A-Team and The Ghost And Mrs. Muir
1940 ● Troy Shondell / (Gary Shelton) → Transatlantic one hit wonder rock ‘n’ roll/pop singer, “This Time” (#6, 1961), his stage name was the inspiration for Tommy James & The Shondells, later with Acuff-Rose Music in Nashville and ASCAP as a regional music publishing executive
1943 ● Jack Bruce / (John Symon Asher Bruce) → Renowned Scottish bass guitarist, songwriter and vocalist for John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, Manfred Mann, “Pretty Flamingo” (#29, UK #1, 1966) and Cream, co-wrote “Sunshine Of Your Love” (#5, 1968), “White Room” (#6, 1968) and “I Feel Free”, later with supertrio West Bruce & Laing and 14 solo albums through 2014, died from liver failure on 10/25/2014, age 71
1943 ● Clive Palmer / (Clive Harold Palmer) → Founding member and principal in Scottish psych-folk and early world music duo The Incredible String Band, 1968 album The Hangman’s Beautiful Daughter reached #161 in the US, died after a long illness on 11/23/2014, age 71
1945 ● Gene Cornish → Guitar and vocals for blue-eyed soul-pop The Rascals, “Groovin'”, (#1, 1967), then power pop Fotomaker, “Miles Away” (#63, 1978), solo
1945 ● Lek Leckenby / (Derek Leckenby) → Guitar, banjo and songwriting for British Invasion pop-rock British Invasion pop-rock Herman’s Hermits (“Mrs. Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter,” #1, 1965), continued with various incarnation sof the band until his death lymphoma on 6/4/1994, age 49
1947 ● Al Ciner → Guitarist for pop-rock one hit wonder American Breed, “Bend Me Shape Me” (Top 10, 1968), Three Dog Night, “Joy To The World” (#1, 1971) and R&B/funk-dance Rufus, “Tell Me Something Good” (#3, 1974)
1950 ● Arthur James Grant → Drummer for Brit blues then prog-rock Edgar Broughton Band, “Apache Dropout” (UK #33, 1970)
1952 ● David Byrne → Guitar, vocals, songwriting and de facto frontman for art-pop-rock Talking Heads, “Take Me To The River” (#26, 1978), Grammy-winning solo artist and composer
1953 ● John Rutsey → Drummer and founding member of Canadian arena rock/power trio Rush, “New World Man” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1982) and 24 other Mainstream Rock Top 20 singles, died from complications of diabetes on 5/11/2008, age 54
1956 ● H / (Steve Hogarth) → Lead vocals for Brit prog-rock revival group Marillion, “Kayleigh” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1985)
1962 ● C.C. DeVille / (Bruce Johannesson)) → Guitarist for hair metal/power ballad Poison, “Every Rose Has It’s Thorn” (#1, 1988)
1962 ● Ian Astbury → Singer and guitarist for punk-rock Southern Death Cult, which evolved into hard rock/metal revival The Cult, “Fire Woman” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1989)
1964 ● Shelley Preston → Joined Brit mixed-gender euro-pop/disco Bucks Fizz as lead vocalist in 1985, “New Beginning (Mamba Seyra)” (UK #8, 1986), left in 1990 for a modeling and backing vocals career
1966 ● Fabrice Morvan → Singer and one half of the scandalous, lip-synching dance-pop vocal duo Milli Vanilli, the pair were stripped of their 1989 Grammy award when in 1990 it was revealed that they never actually sang on their albums or in concert, resurrected a solo career in the early 00s
1966 ● Mike Inez → Bassist for alterna-metal/hard rock Alice In Chains, “No Excuses” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1994)
1966 ● Raphael Saddiq / (Charles Ray Wiggins) → Old school R&B/soul singer, songwriter and bass guitarist, with brother Dwayne and cousin Timothy Christian in R&B/dance Tony! Toni! Toné! (“Feels Good,” #9, R&B #1, 1990), then solo (“Ask Of You,” #19, R&B #2) and the critically-acclaimed album Stone Rollin (#14, 2011)
1969 ● Danny Wood → Singer, songwriter and choreographer for early 90s teen-pop boy band New Kids On The Block, “Step By Step” (#1, 1990), solo
1969 ● Steve Hellier → Keyboards and vocals for electro-dance-dream pop Dubstar, “Stars” (UK #15, 1996)
1971 ● Freaky Tah / (Raymond Rogers) → MC, hype man and vocals for 90s rap quartet The Lost Boyz, “Music Makes Me High” (#51, Rap #5, 1996) plus three R&B Top 10 albums, murdered by gun fire in a hotel lobby on 3/28/1999, age 27
1973 ● Natalie Appleton → Canadian singer in Brit dance-pop-rock all-girl quartet All Saints, “Never Ever” (#4, 1998), then dance-pop sister duo Appleton, “Never Ever” (UK #2, 2003)
1973 ● Shanice / (Shanice Wilson) → Motown R&B/dance-pop singer/songwriter, “I Love Your Smile” (#2, 1991)
1976 ● Hunter Burgan → Multi-instrumentalist and current bass guitarist for alt-punk-rock AFI (A Fire Inside), “Miss Murder” (#24, Modern Rock #1, 2006)
1976 ● Martine McCutcheon / (Martine Kimberley Sherrie Ponting) → Brit actress who gained stardom after playing Tiffany Mitchell on BBC TV’s EastEnders (1995-1998), then pop singer, “Perfect Moment” (UK #1, 1999)
1979 ● Dan Auerbach / (Daniel Quine Auerbach) → Grammy-winning blues-rock songwriter, producer and songwriter, frontman for 00s neo-blues-rock The Black Keys (“Lonely Boy,” #64, Alt Rock #1, 2010) along with other side projects and collaborations
1984 ● Olly Murs / (Oliver Stanley Murs) → Brit singer, songwriter, TV actor and program host with multiple UK hits, including “Troublemaker” (#25, UK #1, 2016)

May 15
1918 ● Eddy Arnold / (Richard Edward Arnold) → Most popular country music entertainer of the 20th century with 14 Country Top 10 albums, 147 charting singles and 28 Country #1 hits, including “Make The World Go Away” (#6, Country #1, 1965), died of natural causes on 5/8/2008, age 89
1931 ● James Mitchell → Saxophone for Stax Records’ house band The Memphis Horns, played sessions for The Doobie Brothers, Aretha Franklin, Al Green, Elvis Presley, Otis Redding, Sam And Dave and many other notables, died from heart failure on 12/18/2000, age 69
1932 ● Baba Oje → Spiritual leader for progressive rap, funk-soul-blues-hip-hop Arrested Development, “Mr. Wendal” (#6, 1992)
1937 ● Trini Lopez / (Trinidad Lopez) → Chicano folk-pop singer and guitarist, “If I Had A Hammer” (#3, 1963)
1938 ● Lenny Welch / (Leon Welch) → MOR/pop balladeer, “Since I Fell For You” (#4, 1963)
1942 ● K.T. Oslin / (Kay Toinette Oslin) → Grammy-winning country singer and songwriter with anthemic “80s Ladies” (#7, 1987) plus 6 other Country Top 10 hits
1944 ● Tich Amey / (Iam Frederick Amey) → Lead guitar for Brit 60s pop-rock two hit wonder quintet Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich, “The Legend Of Xanadu” (UK #1, 1968)
1946 ● Bob Garner → Bass guitar for underappreciated and little known (except in Germany) Britbeat/power pop The Creation, “Painter Man” (GER #8, UK #36, 1967), left the band in 1968 but participated in various reunion performances through the early 00s, died on 6/16/2016, age 70
1947 ● Graham Goble → Guitar and vocals for Aussie pop/rockers Little River Band, “Lonesome Loser” (#6, 1979) and 12 other Top 40 singles
1947 ● Jimy Rogers / (James Rogers) → Vocals for Chicago blue-eyed soul/garage rockers Mauds, “Hold On” (1967), sessions, most recently fronted Blue Road, died 12/4/2010, age 63
1948 ● Brian Eno → Synthesizers and keyboards with glam/prog rock Roxy Music, “Love Is The Drug” (#30, 1976), then pub-rock The Winkies and solo, producer for David Bowie, U2, Talking Heads, John Cale and others, ambient and world music pioneer, multimedia artist
1948 ● Gary Thain → Bassist for Brit jazz-pop-rock Keef Hartley Band, then hard rock Uriah Heep, “Easy Livin'” (1972) , died of a drug overdose 12/8/1975, age 27
1951 ● Fergie / (Dennis Fredericksen) → Lead vocals for pomp-rock MSFunk and Trillion, hard pop-rock Survivor, “American Heartbeat” (#17, 1982), AOR pop-rock Le Roux, “Carrie’s Gone” (#79, 1982), then replaced Bobby Kimball in arena rock Toto, “Stranger In Town” (#30, Mainstream Rock #7, 1984), solo, sessions
1952 ● Phil Seymour → Power pop drummer, singer, guitarist, songwriter and partner in pop/rock Dwight Twilley Band, “I’m On Fire” (#16, 1975), session work including backing vocals for Tom Petty, released three solo albums and several singles, including “Precious To Me” (#22, 1981), died from lymphoma on 8/17/1993, age 41
1953 ● Mike Oldfield → Multi-instrumentalist, new age electronic prog rock composer and bandleader, “Tubular Bells” (#7, 1974), the title track from the first album issued by Virgin Records
1955 ● Kevin John Morris → Drummer since 1983 for Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, “Milk And Alcohol” (UK #9, 1979)
1959 ● Andrew Eldritch → Vocals for goth-metal The Sisters of Mercy, “Temple Of Love” (UK #3, 1992)
1965 ● Jon Sevink → Violin for alt folk-Celtic rock The Levellers, “Just The One” (UK #12, 1995)
1965 ● Mark Colwill → Bass guitar for Brit folk-pop-soul Tindersticks, “Bathtime” (UK #38, 1997)
1966 ● Peter Wiggs → Keyboardist and songwriter for indie dance-pop Saint Etienne, “Nothing Can Stop Us” (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1970 ● Prince Be / (Attrell Cordes) → Vocals in innovative brother hip hop duo P.M. Dawn melding smooth soul, urban R&B and prog rap, “Set Adrift On Memory Bliss” (#3, Dance/Club #6, 1991), stepson of George Brown, founding member of soul/funk Kool & The Gang, died from renal failure on 6/17/2016, age 46
1982 ● Jessica Sutta → Dancer, singer, model, actress and vocalist for burlesque dance-pop girl troupe The Pussycat Dolls, “Don’t Cha” (#2, 2005), then solo, “Show Me” (Dance #1, 2011)
1983 ● Devin Bronson → Lead guitarist with Avril Lavigne band, Kelly Osbourne band, Black List Club and Canadian rock band Treble Charger

May 16
1919 ● Liberace / (Wladziu Valentino Liberace) → Campy, sequin-suited easy listening/pop pianist, Vegas showman and TV host (with a candelabra on his piano), died from complications of AIDS and emphysema on 2/4/1987, age 67
1932 ● Red Holt / (Isaac Holt) → Drummer in 50s and 60s jazz ensemble Ramsey Lewis Trio, then formed one hit wonder jazz-pop Young-Holt Unlimited, “Soulful Strut” (#3, 1969)
1936 ● Kripp Johnson / (Corinthian Johnson) → Vocals in R&B/doo wop The Del-Vikings, “Come Go With Me” (#4, 1957), died on 6/22/1990
1944 ● Billy Cobham → Jazz-rock fusion drummer for Miles Davis, founded Mahavishnu Orchestra, backed James Brown and Santana, played with Grateful Dead and offshoot Bobby & The Midnights, solo and bandleader as Spectrum
1945 ● Nicky Chinn / (Nicholas Barry Chinn) → Novello Award-winning songwriter and producer, co-wrote with Michael Chapman as the “Chinnichap” songwriting and production team over fifty Top 40 hits, worked with Sweet (“The Ballroom Blitz,” #5, UK #2, 1973), Suzi Quatro (“Devil Gate Drive,” UK #1, 1974) and Smokie (“Living Next Door Too Alice,” #25, UK #5, 1976), produced albums for Blondie and The Knack
1946 ● Robert Fripp → Avant-garde and experimental pop-rock composer, guitarist and bandleader, only constant member of prog/space-rock King Crimson, “The Court Of The Crimson King” (#80, 1970), solo albums and multiple side and collaboration projects
1946 ● Roger Earl → Drummer for blues-rock Savoy Brown, then co-founded blues-rock Foghat, “Slow Ride” (#20, 1975) and constant bandmember in the 40-plus year history of the band
1947 ● Barbara Lee Jones → Vocals for top-tier 60s New York girl group The Chiffons, “He’s So Fine” (#1, 1963), died from a heart attack on 5/15/1992, age 44
1947 ● Darrell Sweet → Co-founder and drummer for Scottish hard rock Nazareth, “Love Hurts” (#8, 1976), died from a fatal heart attack before a show in Indiana on 4/30/1999, age 52
1951 ● Jonathan Richman → Guitarist, singer and songwriter, founded and fronted proto-punk The Modern Lovers, “Roadrunner” (, 1977), solo and collaborations, appeared in the film There’s Something About Mary (1998)
1953 ● Richard Page → Bass guitarist and vocals for 80s atmospheric pop-rock quartet Mr. Mister, “Kyrie” (#1, 1985)
1955 ● Hazel O’Connor → Brit singer/songwriter and actress, starred in the film Breaking Glass (1980) which launched her pop singing career, “Will You” (UK #8, 1981),
1958 ● Glenn Gregory → Vocals for 80s synth-pop Heaven 17, “Temptation” (UK #2, 1983) and “Contenders” (Dance/Club #6, 1987)
1960 ● Lovebug Starski / (Kevin Smith) → Teenage gang member turned rapper, MC, record producer and self-styled creator of the term “hip-hop” for which he was widely-recognized as a key player in the development of hip-hop music in the South Bronx in the mid-70s, issued a single album and a dozen singles in the 80s, was attempting a career reboot in Las Vegas but died following a heart attack on 2/8/2018, age 57
1964 ● Boyd Tinsley → Violinist for pop-funk-rock jam band Dave Matthews Band, “Don’t Drink The Water” (Modern Rock #4, 1998)
1965 ● Chris Novoselic / (Krist Anthony Novoselic) → Croatian-American bass guitarist and co-founder of premier grunge rock Nirvana, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (#6, 1992), played in variety of bands since Nirvana broke up in 1994, music columnist and founder of JAMPAC
1966 ● Janet Jackson → Youngest of the ten Jackson children, R&B/soul-pop superstar, “Miss You Much” (#1, 1989), TV and film actress
1968 ● Ralph Tresvant → Vocals for R&B/teen pop then hip hop/new jack swing vocal quartet New Edition, “If It Isn’t Love” (#7, 1988)
1971 ● Simon Katz → Percussion in Grammy-winning Brit acid jazz-funk-pop Jamiroquai, “Canned Heat” (Dance #1, 1999)
1973 ● Will White → DJ, vocals and mixmaster for techno-dance Propellerheads, “History Repeating” (Dance/Club #10, 1998), remixed 808 State, Luscious Jackson

May 17
1921 ● Bob Merrill / (Henry Merrill Levan) → Pop and Broadway songwriter, wrote multiple hits, including “(How Much Is) That Doggie In The Window” for Patti Page (#1, 1953) and “People” for Barbra Streisand (Adult Contemporary #1, 1964), died after a long illness on 2/17/1998, age 76
1934 ● Sonny Knight / (Joseph Coleman Smith) → R&B singer (“Confidential,” #17, R&B #8, 1956) and author of the novel The Day The Music Died (1981) about racism in the music industry, suffered a massive stroke in 1996 and died two years later on 9/5/1998, age 64
1938 ● Pervis Jackson → Original member and bass vocals for Grammy-winning Motown and later Atlantic R&B/soul The Spinners, “Then Came You” (#1, 1974) plus eleven other Top 20 hits in the 70s, continued touring with the group until his death from cancer on 8/18/2008, age 70
1941 ● Malcolm Hale → Guitar, horns and vocals for sunny folk-pop Spanky & Our Gang, “Sunday Will Never Be The Same” (#9, 1967), died from carbon monoxide poisoning due to a faulty home furnace on 10/30/1968, age 27
1942 ● Taj Mahal / (Henry St. Clair Fredericks) → Prominent multi-instrumentalist acoustic and electric folk-blues-country-reggae guitarist and songwriter, founded roots folk-rock Rising Sons with Ry Cooder, prolific solo career with over 30 studio and live albums, composer of film soundtracks, Grammy-winning best contemporary blues album Señor Blues (1997)
1944 ● Richard Schwartz → Vocals for white R&B/doo wop quartet The Quotations, “Imagination” (Top 40, 1961)
1944 ● Jesse Winchester / (James Ridout Winchester) → Draft-dodging American folk-pop singer/songwriter, “Say What” (#2, 1981), moved to Canada in 1967 and received citizenship in 1973, continued to record and perform until his death from bladder cancer on 4/11/2014, age 69
1949 ● Bill Bruford → Inimitable rock drummer, composer, bandleader, producer and record company executive, founding member of prog/art rock Yes, briefly with prog rock Genesis in early 70s, then prog/space-rock King Crimson, “Heartbeat” (Mainstream Rock #57, 1982) for 25 years, solo albums and side projects including UK, ABWH and Earthworks
1950 ● Howard Ashman → With songwriting team partner/composer Alan Menken, Academy Award-winning lyricist and producer for stage and screen, co-wrote “Under The Sea” from Disney‘s The Little Mermaid (1989), the title song to Beauty And The Beast (1991) and “Friend Like Me” from Aladdin (1992), died of AIDS on 3/14/1991, age 40
1952 ● Roy Adams → Drummer for Brit blues-rock Climax Blues Band, “Couldn’t Get It Right” (#3, 1977)
1953 ● Lightnin’ Licks Johnson / (George Johnson) → Vocals and guitar for R&B/soul-disco-funk sibling group The Brothers Johnson, “Stomp!” (#7, R&B #1, 1980), solo
1955 ● David Townsend → EMI staff songwriter turned smooth soul singer and guitarist in the “quiet storm” trio Surface, “The First Time” (#1, R&B #1, 1990), found dead in his home on 10/26/2005, age 50
1958 ● Alan Rankine → Guitarist for post-punk New Romantic art-glam-dance-pop The Associates, “Party Fears Two” (UK #9, 1982), now college music lecturer
1959 ● Paul Di’Anno / (Paul Andrews) → Vocalist for Brit heavy metal Iron Maiden, “Flight Of Icarus” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1983), was fired in 1981 and pursued a moderately successful solo career and as a member of several hard rock project groups, including Gogmagog, Battlezone, Praying Mantis and Killers
1960 ● Simon Fuller → Record and TV producer, manager for the Spice Girls, Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Chris Daughtry, Fantasia, Will Young, Emma Bunton and others, creator of the Idol TV variety/contest series, first in the U.K. as Pop Idol and now with over 50 other versions including American Idol, Canadian Idol, and World Idol
1961 ● Enya / (Eithne Ni Bhraonain) → Vocals for Celtic folk-pop sibling group Clannad, then solo new age dreamy synth-pop, “Orinoco Flow” (#24, 1989) and “Only Time” (#10, 2001)
1962 ● Tracey Bryn → With sister Melissa Belland, frontgal and vocals in college rock/indie pop-rock Voice Of The Beehive, “Scary Kisses” (Mainstream Top 40 #32, 1996), daughter of Bruce Belland of 50s pop vocal quartet The Four Preps
1963 ● Page McConnell → Keyboards, vocals and songwriting for improv-rock jam band Phish, “Free” (Mainstream Rock #11, 1996) plus solo and side projects
1965 ● Homer O’Dell → Guitarist for new jack swing R&B/soul-pop sextet Mint Condition, “What Kind Of Man Would I Be?” (#17, 1996)
1965 ● Trent Reznor → Founder, leader and songwriter for industrial rock Nine Inch Nails, “The Day The World Went Away” (#17, 1999)
1966 ● Jan Kincaid → Founding member, drums and keyboards for acid-jazz/funk The Brand New Heavies, “Sometimes” (UK #11, 1997)
1967 ● Simon Friend → Guitarist for alt folk-Celtic rock The Levellers, “Just The One” (UK #12, 1995)
1968 ● Dave Abbruzzese → Drummer (1991-94) for post-grunge/alt rock kings Pearl Jam, “Even Flow” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1992), solo
1970 ● Darnell Van Rensalier → Vocals for R&B/urban contemporary soul quartet Shai, “If I Ever Fall In Love” (#2, 1992)
1970 ● Jordan Knight → Singer in early 90s teen-pop boy band New Kids On The Block, “Step By Step” (#1, 1990)
1971 ● Vernie Bennett / (Vernette Bennett) → Vocals for Brit R&B/dance-pop singer for girl-group Eternal, “Stay” (#19, UK #3, 1993)
1973 ● Joshua Homme → Founding member, vocalist, guitarist and primary songwriter for stoner metal Queens Of The Stone Age, “No One Knows” (#51, Mainstream Rock #5, 2002), later with supergroup Them Crooked Vultures, “New Fang” (Alt Rock #10, 2009)
1974 ● Andrea Corr → With two sisters and brother, lead vocals in Irish folk-pop-rock sibling act The Corrs, “Breathless” (Adult Top 40 #7, 2000), solo and actress
1976 ● Kandi Burruss → Vocals for female R&B/dance-pop quartet Xscape, “Understanding” (#8, 1993)

May 18
1911 ● Big Joe Turner / (Joseph Vernon Turner) → Premier blues “shouter” and boogie-woogie, jump blues and early rock ‘n’ roll vocalist, “Shake, Rattle And Roll” (#22, R&B #1, 1954), died from a kidney failure on 11/24/1985, age 74
1912 ● Perry Como / (Pierino Ronald Como) → Small town barber turned pre-rock ‘n’ roll crooner, then Grammy-winning smooth easy listening/pop singer, “Catch A Falling Star” (#1, 1958) and 19 other Pop Top 25 singles plus nine Adult Contemporary Top 10 hits, died in his sleep on 5/12/2001, age 88
1922 ● Kai Winding / (Kai Chresten Winding) → Danish-American jazz trombonist who played with every major jazz and be bop artist in small and large groups over a 40-year career, from Benny Goodman and Stan Kenton in the 40s to Quincy Jones and Chuck Mangione in the 70s, founded several of his own groups and collaborated with J. J. Johnson in the 50s, was the first to record “Time Is On My Side,” which later became the first US Top 10 hit for The Rolling Stones (#6, 1964), died following a heart attack during surgery for a brain tumor on 5/6/1983, age 60.
1933 ● Fred Smith / (Fred Sledge Smith) → R&B songwriter and record producer, co-wrote several 50-60s hits for doo wop The Olympics, including novelty song “Western Movies” (#8, R&B #7, 1958) and dance-craze “(Baby) Hully Bully” (#72, 1960), produced hits for Bob & Earl (“Harlem Shuffle,” #44, 1964) and Jackie Lee (“The Duck,” #14, 1965), formed his own label, MoSoul, in 1967 and produced two albums for Bill Cosby, worked briefly for Stax Records until it closed in 1975, left the music industry thereafter and died from undisclosed causes on 7/29/2005, age 72
1939 ● Gary Paxton / (Larry Wayne Stevens) → Grammy-winning, eccentric gospel musician whose career opened as a teenage pop singer with Clyde “Skip” Battin (later in The Byrds) in the duo Skip & Flip (“It Was I,” #11, 1959), later recorded with the Hollywood Argyles (“Alley-Oop,” #1, 1960) and produced “Monster Mash” (#1, 1962) for
Bobby “Boris” Pickett, converted to Christianity in the 70s, won Best Inspirational Album award in 1975, survived an assassination attempt by hitmen in 1980, retired in 1999 and died at home on 7/16/2016, age 77
1942 ● Rodney Dillard → Progressive and influential bluegrass guitar and dobro player with brother Doug in duo country-rock The Dillards
1944 ● Albert Hammond → Brit-Gibraltarian pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “It Never Rains In Southern California” (#5, 1973)
1945 ● Scar Lopez / (Richard Lopez) → Founding member and vocals for pioneering “East Side Sound” of L.A., Mexican-American one hit wonder, brown-eyed-soul/garage rock quartet Cannibal And The Headhunters (“Land Of A Thousand Dances,” #30, 1965), died from lung cancer on 7/30/2010, age 65
1946 ● Bruce Gilbert → Guitarist for long-lived post-punk Wire, “Eardrum Buzz” (Modern Rock #2, 1989)
1946 ● George Alexander → Bassist for eclectic rock ‘n’ roll/proto-punk cult band The Flamin’ Groovies, album Shake Some Action reached #142 on the Billboard 200 chart
1949 ● Bill Wallace → Bassist for Canadian rockers The Guess Who, “American Woman” (#1, 1970), now college music instructor
1949 ● Rick Wakeman → Renowned keyboardist and composer, started as sessionman for Black Sabbath, David Bowie and others in the 60s, joined folk-prog-rock The Strawbs in 1970, moved to archetypal prog rock Yes, “Roundabout” (#13, 1971), successful solo career and film score composing
1950 ● Mark Mothersbaugh → Multi-instrumental musician, composer, singer and founding member of quirky 80s pop-rock Devo, “Whip It” (#14, 1980), also wrote musical scores for dozens of films and television shows in the 90s and 00s in music production company Mutato Muzika with his former Devo bandmates
1952 ● George Strait → The “King of Country,” traditionalist country, honky tonk and Western swing singer, songwriter and guitarist with more (57) Country #1 hits than any other artist, including “All My Ex’s Live In Texas” (Country #1, 1987)
1953 ● Butch Tavares / (Feliciano Tavares) → Vocals for five brother R&B/funk-disco Tavares, “Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel” (#15, 1976)
1954 ● Wreckless Eric / (Eric Goulden) → Singer, songwriter and Stiff Records artist, had the punk classic UK airplay hit “I’d Go The Whole Wide World” (1978)
1956 ● Jim Moginie / (James Moginie) → Australian singer and musician best known for founding politically-outspoken Aussie rock Midnight Oil (“Beds Are Burning,” #17, Mainstream Rock #6, 1988), the band’s album Diesel And Dust (1987) ranked #13 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Best Albums of the 80s
1957 ● Michael Cretu → Romanian-born founder, frontman, composer and creative genius behind new age electronic/world music Enigma, “Return To Innocence” (#4, 1994)
1958 ● Toyah Ann Wilcox → Brit actress and singer, appeared in the punk film Jubilee (1977) and in The Who‘s mod film Quadrophenia (1979), fronted punk-rock Toyah, “It’s A Mystery” (1981)
1961 ● Hugh Whittaker → Drummer for Brit jangle-guitar pop-rock The Housemartins, “Caravan Of Love” (UK #1, 1986)
1961 ● Russell Senior → Guitar and violin for alt rock/Britpop Pulp, “Common People” (UK #2, 1995), left in 1997 to pursue other projects and sell antique glassware
1969 ● Martika / (Martika Marta Marrero) → Cuban-American teen-pop/bubblegum singer, “Toy Soldiers” (#1, 1989)
1970 ● Billy Howerdel → Guitar technician for alt rock Tool, “Schism” (Mainstream Rock #2, 2001), then founded alt-metal-fused-with-art rock A Perfect Circle, “Weak And Powerless” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1975 ● Jack Johnson → Hawaii born professional surfer turned acoustic soft beach rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Upside Down” (#38, Adult Top 40 #11, 2006)
1982 ● Eric West → 90s hip hop singer turned model and actor, returned to music with a 2010 solo album and the single “Gone” featuring Kanye West

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This Week’s Birthdays (May 5 – 11)

Happy Birthday this week to:

May 05
1901 ● Blind Willie McTell / (William Samuel McTier) → Piedmont blues slide guitarist and ragtime singer of the 40s and 50s, wrote the oft-covered “Statesboro Blues” (1928) and influenced numerous 60s folk revival musicians including Bob Dylan, died from a stroke on 8/19/1959, age 58
1928 ● Marshall Grant → Bassist and original member of The Tennessee Two, Johnny Cash‘s backing band, helped define the “boom-chicka-boom” sound behind many of Cash‘s hits, including “Ring Of Fire” (#17, Country #1, 1963) and “The Man In Black” (#58, Country #1, 1971), served as road manager Cash‘s larger touring company until 1980 when they had a falling out and subsequent legal dispute, reconciled and rejoined Cash in 1999, died from natural causes on 8/7/2011, age 83
1934 ● Ace Cannon / (John Cannon) → Pop-rock saxophonist with a dozen charting singles, including the self-penned debut hit “Tuff” (#17, 1962) and several instrumental covers of other, then-current hits
1937 ● Johnnie Taylor / (Johnnie Harrison Taylor) → Gospel star, R&B/soul balladeer, funk-soul and disco man, “Disco Lady” (#1, 1968), died after a heart attack on 5/31/2000, age 63
1937 ● Delia Derbyshire → Early pioneer and composer of electric music and electroacoustic “musique concrète,” best known for creating the electronic sounds on the theme music to the Doctor Who TV program, died from renal failure on 7/3/2001, age 64
1942 ● Jim King / (Alec Woodburn) → Saxophone for blues/art rock Family, “In My Own Time” (UK #4, 1971)
1948 ● Bill Ward → Founding member and long-serving drummer for hard rock/gloom metal Black Sabbath, “Paranoid” (#61, 1970) and “Psycho Man” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1998)
1950 ● Doug Gray → Keyboards and lead vocals for long-lived Southern country-rock The Marshall Tucker Band, “Heard It In A Love Song” (#14, 1977), still performs with the latest incarnation of the band after 40 years
1950 ● Eddy Amoo → Guitar and vocals for Brit Northern soul/funk The Real Thing, “You To Me Are Everything” (R&B #28, UK #1, 1976)
1951 ● Rex Goh → Guitar for Aussie light pop-rock Air Supply, “The One That You Love” (#1, 1981)
1959 ● Ian McCulloch → Founding member, vocals and frontman for gloomy post-punk psych-rock Echo & The Bunnymen, “The Killing Moon” (UK #4, 1984), left in 1988 for solo career, “Proud To Fall” (Modern Rock #1, 1990), rejoined Echo & The Bunnymen in 1997
1961 ● Sean McLuskey → Drummer for Brit dance-pop-rock Jo Boxers, “Boxer Beat” (UK #3, 1983)
1962 ● Gary Daly → Vocals for new romantic/dance-pop China Crisis, “Wishful Thinking” (UK #9, 1984) and “Working With Fire And Steel” (Dance/Club #27, 1984)
1962 ● Kevin Mooney → Bassist for post-punk New Wave glam-pop Adam & The Ants, “Goody Two Shoes” (#12, 1982)
1981 ● Craig David → Brit neo-R&B/smooth pop singer/songwriter, “Fill Me In” (#15, UK #1, 2001)
1981 ● Jesse Colburn → Guitarist for Canadian punk rock Closet Monster and Avril Lavigne‘s backing band from 2002 to 2004
1988 ● Adele / (Adele Adkins) → Grammy-winning indie pop Brit singer/songwriter, “Chasing Pavements” (#2, 2010)
1988 ● Brooke Hogan / (Brooke Bollea) → Daughter of professional wrestler Hulk Hogan, TV reality show actress, socialite and one hit wonder pop singer, “About Us” (#33, 2006)
1988 ● Skye Sweetnam / (Skye Alexandra Sweetnam) → Canadian teen pop singer, “Split Personality” (Top 40 Mainstream #37, 2004) and “Billy S.” (Canada #15, 2003)
1989 ● Chris Brown → R&B/urban-pop singer whose debut single, “Run It” (#1, 2005) was the first Billboard #1 debut single in over a decade

May 06
1939 ● Herbie Cox → Lead vocals for R&B/doo wop The Cleftones, “Heart And Soul” (#18, R&B #10, 1961)
1942 ● Colin Earl → Pianist for novelty pop-rock one hit wonder Mungo Jerry, “In The Summertime” (#3, 1970), briefly played with Foghat, “Slow Ride” (#20, 1975), with Mungo Jerry bandmate Paul King formed the King Earl Band, brother of Foghat drummer Roger Earl
1943 ● Mike Ratledge → Founding member and keyboardist for Canterbury-scene psych-art-jazz-prog rock fusion Soft Machine, left in 1976 to pursue a solo career, wrote several film scores, composed and produced music for commercials and theater productions
1943 ● Sandra Tilley → Vocals for Motown pop girl group The Velvettes, left to join The Orlons and Martha & The Vandellas in 1969, “Bless You” (#53, R&B #29, 1971), died of a brain aneurysm on 9/9/1981, age 38
1945 ● Bob Seger → Roots rock guitarist, singer/songwriter and bandleader, “Night Moves” (#4, 1976) and “Shakedown” (#1, 1986) from the film Beverly Hills Cop II (1986)
1945 ● Jimmie Dale Gilmore → Founding member, guitarist, singer and chief songwriter for renowned but underrated Texan alt country-rock The Flatlanders, solo
1948 ● Mary MacGregor → Pop singer/songwriter, “Torn Between Two Lovers” (#1, 1976)
1950 ● Robbie McIntosh → Scottish drummer with Brian Auger’s Oblivion Express, then founding member of blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974), died from a heroin overdose on 9/23/1974, age 24
1951 ● Davey Johnstone / (David William Logan Johnstone) → Scottish guitarist in folk-prog rock Magna Carta from 1970-1971, then joined The Elton John Band and has performed on dozens of albums and in over 2,000 live shows with EJ, currently serves as music director for the band
1960 ● John Flansburgh → Guitar and vocals for alt pop-rock They Might Be Giants, “Birdhouse In Your Soul” (#3, Modern Rock, 1990)
1960 ● Larry Steinbachel → Guitar and vocals for early-out gay synth-pop Bronski Beat, “Smalltown Boy” (#48, Dance/Pop #1, 1984)
1964 ● Tony Scalzo → Bass and vocals for alt rock/power pop Fastball, “Out Of My Head” (#20, Adult Top 40 #3, 1999)
1966 ● David Narcizo → Drummer for alt rock Throwing Muses, “Dizzy” (Modern Rock #8, 1989)
1967 ● Mark Bryan → Guitarist for 90s pop-rock quartet Hootie & The Blowfish, “Only Wanna Be With You” (#6, 1995)
1968 ● Tony Wright → Vocals and guitarist for hard rock/heavy metal Terrorvision, “Tequila” (UK #2, 1999)
1971 ● Chris Shiflett → Guitarist for post-grunge alt rock Foo Fighters, “Learn To Fly” (Modern Rock #1, 1999)
1971 ● Sarah Blackwood → Vocals for electro-dance-dream pop Dubstar, “Stars” (UK #15, 1996)

May 07
1923 ● Jim Lowe / (James Elsworth Lowe) → Country-pop singer with four Top 40 hits in the mid-50s among seven total Billboard 100 charting songs, including “The Green Door” (#1, R&B #5, 1956), then became a beloved and respected New York City radio personality for over 50 years at WNEW-AM and WNBC-AM and nationally, retired in 1977 and died from natural causes on 12/12/2016, age 93
1931 ● Teresa Brewer / (Teresa Breuer) → Novelty pop singer with hundreds of 50s recordings, including “A Tear Fell” (#5, 1956), reemerged in the 70s as jazz-pop singer, recorded with Count Basie, Duke Ellington and others, died from progressive supranuclear palsy on 10/17/2007, age 76
1931 ● Jerry Chesnut / (Jerry Donald Chesnut) → Nashville-based country music songwriter with a deep oeuvre of songs recorded by many dozens of others, including George Jones (“If Not For You,” Country #6, 1969), Elvis Presley (“T-R-O-U-B-L-E,” #35, Country #11, 1975), Elvis Costello (“Good Year For The Roses,” UK #6, 1981), Loretta Lynn, Del Reeves and many others, retired from songwriting in 1980 and died from respiratory failure on 12/15/2018, age 87.
1932 ● Derek Taylor → Journalist and publicist, Beatles’ PR manager, worked for Apple Corps, record company executive with Warner Bros. Records, died from cancer on 9/8/1997, age 65
1939 ● Johnny Maestro / (John Mastrangelo) → Tenor vocals for biracial R&B/doo wop The Crests, “Sixteen Candles” (#2, 1959), went solo in 60s, then formed pop-rock The Brooklyn Bridge, “The Worst That Could Happen” (#3, 1969), died of cancer on 3/24/2010, age 70
1939 ● Jimmy Ruffin → R&B/soul singer for Motown, “What Becomes Of The Broken-Hearted” (#7, 1966), older brother of The TemptationsDavid Ruffin, died in a Las Vegas intensive care unit on 11/17/2014, age 75
1940 ● JC Connors / (Jim “JC” Connors) → Renowned radio DJ with WMEX (Boston), among others, and inspiration for Harry Chapin‘s “W O L D” (#36, 1974), died in a car crash on 2/24/1987, age 46
1942 ● Lorrie Collins / (Lawrencine May Collins) → Brassy rockabilly singer and guitarist, one of the first female rock ‘n’ roll singers, with her younger brother, Larry, one half of the teen rockabilly duo The Collins Kids, their flashy Western wear and stage antics were well-suited to early TV variety shows in the 50s and earned them a spot on Tex Ritter‘s weekly Town Hall Party, in the late 50s briefly dated teen idol Ricky Nelson and twice appeared with him on his parents’ sitcom The Adventures Of Ozzie And Harriet (1958), recorded multiple rockabilly and country-pop songs that did not chart but are nonetheless appreciated by enthusiasts and still available, reunited in 1992 and performed with Larry at rockabilly festivals until her death from complications of a fall on 8/4/2018, age 76
1943 ● Rick Westfield → Keyboards for jazz-fusion then R&B/funk Kool & The Gang, “Jungle Boogie” (#4, 1973), left in 1976 for solo career
1943 ● Ricky West / (Richard Westwood) → Original member, guitar and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock quintet The Tremeloes, sang lead on “Silence Is Golden” (US #11, UK #1, 1967), left the band in 2012 after more than 50 years
1943 ● Thelma Houston → One hit wonder R&B/soul singer, “Don’t Leave Me This Way” (#1, 1977), session vocals, TV and film appearances
1945 ● Christy Moore → Contemporary Irish roots-folk singer/songwriter, lead vocals and guitar for folk-pop Planxty, “Three Drunken Maidens” (1972), frontman for Moving Hearts, solo
1945 ● Cornelius Bumpus → Woodwind and keyboard player, played saxophone for Bobby Freeman in the 60s and Moby Grape in the 70s, joined The Doobie Brothers (“What A Fool Believes,” #1, 1979) for the late 70s and 80s and Steely Dan (“Cousin Dupree,” #30, 2000) from 1993 to 2004, died from a heart attack aboard a flight from New York to Los Angeles on 2/3/2004, age 58
1946 ● Arcelio Garcia → Guitarist for Latin funk-rock Malo, “Sauvecito” (#18, 1972)
1946 ● Bill Kreutzmann → Drummer for rock’s longest, strangest trip Grateful Dead, “Sugar Magnolia” (#91, 1973) and “Touch Of Grey” (#9, 1987), plus Dead spinoff The Other Ones
1946 ● Ray Monette → 40-year guitarist for Motown blue-eyed soul Rare Earth, “Get Ready” (#4, 1970)
1946 ● William Danoff → Singer and songwriter for AM pop one hit wonder Starland Vocal Band, “Afternoon Delight” (#1, 1976), co-wrote “Take Me Home, Country Roads” with John Denver (#2, 1971)
1946 ● Jerry Nolan → Drummer for glam-punk New York Dolls, “Personality Crisis” (1973), left to form The Heartbreakers with Johnny Thunders and Richard Hell, died from a stroke on 1/14/1992, age 45
1948 ● Pete Wingfield → Singer and session pianist, backing bands, producer, solo one hit wonder faux-doo wop “Eighteen With A Bullet” (#15, 1971)
1949 ● Keith / (James Barry Keefer) → One hit wonder pop singer, “98.6” (#7, 1967)
1950 ● Prairie Prince / (Charles L’Empereur Prince) → Drummer for early 70s line up of Journey, then co-founded camp-rock pop-rock satirists The Tubes, “She’s A Beauty” (#10, 1978), later with the New Cars
1955 ● Steve Diggle → Guitarist and vocalist with punk rock Buzzcocks, wrote numerous songs for the band, including “Harmony In My Head” (UK #32, 1979), formed post-punk Flag Of Convenience in 1982 and appeared in the film Vinyl as himself in 2013
1956 ● Anne Dudley / (Anne Jennifer Beckingham) → Academy-award winning film score composer (The Full Monty, 1998) and founding member of avant-garde synth-pop Art Of Noise, “Kiss” featuring Tom Jones (#31, Dance/Club #18, UK #5, 1988)
1958 ● Marty Willson / (Marty Willson-Piper) → Rhythm guitar for Aussie New Wave psych-pop then prog rock The Church, “Under The Milky Way” (#30, 1989)
1961 ● Phil Campbell → Lead guitarist for punk-metal Motörhead, “Ace Of Spades” (UK #15, 1980)
1971 ● Eagle-Eye / (Eagle-Eye Cherry) → One hit wonder alt pop-rock singer/songwriter, “Save Tonight” (#5, 1998), son of avant-garde jazz trumpeter Don Cherry and half-brother of alternative rap pioneer Neneh Cherry
1974 ● Lynden David Hall → Award-winning, up-and-coming singer, songwriter and producer in the Brit neo-soul movement of the 90s with six UK Top 50 singles, including his debut “Sexy Cinderella” (UK #45, 1997), died from complications of a stem cell transplant he received to combat lymphoma on 2/14/2006, age 31
1986 ● Matt Helders → Drums and vocals for Brit teen alt/indie rock Arctic Monkeys, “I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor” (Modern Rock #7, 2005)

May 08
1911 ● Robert Johnson → Highly-influential, legendary and oft-covered blues singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Cross Road Blues” (1937), his songs were performed by many artists and groups, including Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Cream (“Crossroads”, 1968), Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones (“Love In Vain”, 1969), died from unknown causes on 8/16/1938, age 27
1940 ● Ricky Nelson / (Eric Hillard Nelson) → Teen idol and rockabilly/country-pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Travellin’ Man” (#1, 1961) plus 18 other Top 10 singles, played himself on his parent’s TV show The Adventures Of Ozzie and Harriet, died in a plane crash on 12/31/1985, age 45
1941 ● John Fred / (John Fred Gourier) → Singer, songwriter, guitarist and bandleader for one hit wonder novelty pop-rock John Fred & His Playboy Band, “Judy In Disguise” (#1, 1968), died after a long battle with kidney disease on 4/15/2005, age 63
1942 ● Jack Blanchard → With wife Misty Morgan, one-half of the country-pop vocal duo Jack & Misty, scored two crossover hits, including the Grammy-nominated “Tennessee Bird Walk” (#23, Country #1, 1970) among 15 country chart hits, continued to record and perform without chart success into the 00s
1943 ● Jon Mark / (Jon Michael Biurchell) → Grammy-winning singer, songwriter and guitarist, one half of jazz-pop/prog rock duo Mark-Almond with Johnny Almond, prior founding member of Influential but short-lived Brit pop-rock Sweet Thursday, also played with Marianne Faithfull, John Mayall and others
1943 ● Paul Samwell / (Paul Samwell-Smith) → Bassist for blues-rock The Yardbirds, “For Your Love” (#6, 1965), left in the late 60s and became a producer for Jethro Tull, Renaissance, Carly Simon, Cat Stevens and others
1943 ● Toni Tennille / (Cathyrn Antoinette Tennille) → Singer with husband Daryl Dragon in Grammy-winning pop duo The Captain & Tennille, “Love Will Keep Us Together” (#1, 1975)
1943 ● Danny Whitten → Singer, guitarist and frequent songwriter, member of Neil Young‘s Crazy Horse, wrote “I Don’t Wanna Talk About It” (covered by Rod Stewart, Rita Coolidge and Everything But The Girl), Young‘s “The Needle and the Damage Done” (1972) is about Whitten’s heroin abuse, from which he died of an overdose on 11/18/1972, age 29
1944 ● Bill Legend / (William Fifield) → Drummer for proto-glam-rock T. Rex, “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” (#10, 1971)
1944 ● Gary Glitter / (Paul Francis Gadd) → Brit glam-rock singer/songwriter and guitarist, best known in US for “Rock & Roll, Pt. 2” (#7, 1972), had 17 UK Top 40 singles, convicted of child pornography in England in 1999
1945 ● Keith Jarrett → Jazz and classical pianist and composer, played with Miles Davis and Art Blakely, fronted several of his own bands
1951 ● Chris Frantz → Drummer for New Wave art-pop-rock Talking Heads, “Take Me To The River” (#26, 1978), co-founder Tom Tom Club (with wife/bassist Tina Weymouth)
1951 ● Philip Bailey → Vocals for R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975), solo, including duet with Phil Collins, “Easy Lover” (#2, 1990)
1953 ● Alex Van Halen → Drummer for hard rock megastars Van Halen, “Jump” (#1, 1984), brother of Eddie, now a clean-and-sober ordained minister
1953 ● Billy Burnette → Pop-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist in sessions and tours, solo “Don’t Say Know” (#68, 1980), joined Fleetwood Mac in 1985 and left in 1995, still sessions, tours and occasional solo works
1955 ● Henry Priestman → Founding member, keyboards and vocals for Brit New Wave power pop The Yachts, “Suffice To Say” (1977), then blue-eyed soul sibling trio The Christians, “When Fingers Point” (Dance/Club #29, 1988) and alt rock It’s Immaterial
1964 ● Dave Rowntree → Drummer for alt rock then Britpop Blur, “Girls & Boys” (Alt Rock #4, 1994)
1972 ● Darren Hayes → Vocalist and one-half of Australian dance-pop duo Savage Garden, “Truly Madly Deeply” (#1, 1998), solo, “Insatiable” (#77, UK #8, 2002)
1975 ● Enrique Iglesias → Latin pop megastar singer, “Be With You” (#1, 2000), son of Julio
1976 ● H / (Ian Watkins) → Vocals for pre-fab Brit dance-pop group The Steps, “5, 6, 7, 8” (UK #14, 1997)
1976 ● Martha Wainwright → Canadian/American folk-rock singer/songwriter, daughter of Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle, sister of Rufus Wainwright, backing vocals on recordings by her family members, released full length eponymous debut in 2006
1977 ● Joe Bonamassa → Virtuoso blues-rock guitarist, songwriter and bandleader, at age 14 formed Bloodline with Waylon Krieger (Robby Krieger‘s son), Erin Davis (Miles Davis‘ son) and Berry Oakley, Jr. (Allman Brothers bassist’s son) for one album, then solo career with 12 Top 10 Blues albums, some featuring guest spots by Eric Clapton, B. B. King and others, currently in Black Rock Communion
1978 ● Ana Maria Lombo → Vocals for all-girl teen dance-pop quintet Eden’s Crush, “Get Over Yourself” (#1, 2001), the first #1 debut single by an all-female group
1985 ● Matt Jay / (Matthew James Willis) → Singer/songwriter and founding member of Brit pop-punk boyband Busted, “You Said No” (UK #1, 2003), solo, “Up All Night” (UK #7, 2006)

May 09
1914 ● Hank Snow / (Clarence Eugene Snow) → Canadian-born country singer, “The Singing Ranger”, released over 100 albums and had 35 Country Top 40 singles between 1955 and 1980, including “Ninety Miles An Hour (Down A Dead-End Street)” (Country #2, 1963), died from heart failure on 12/20/1999, age 86
1935 ● Nokie Edwards / (Nole Floyd Edwards) → Founding member and first bassist for seminal surf rock instrumental combo The Ventures (“Walk – Don’t Run,” #2, 1960 and remake “Walk – Don’t Run ’64,” #8, 1964), switched to lead guitar and perfected the twangy,, staccato riffs that characterized the surf rock genre in the mid-60s, left the band in the 80s but continued to perform and record with his own bands – including occasional gigs with reconstituted versions of The Ventures – until his death from complications of hip reconstruction surgery on 3/12/2018, age 82
1937 ● Sonny Curtis → Country-pop and rock ‘n’ roll singer, songwriter and guitarist, played in an early version of Buddy Holly & The Crickets, wrote “I Fought The Law” and “Love Is All Around” (the theme song to the Mary Tyler Moore Show)
1937 ● David Prater / (David Prater, Jr.) → One half of top R&B/soul duo Sam & Dave, “Soul Man” (#2, 1967), died in a single-car accident on 4/9/1988, age 50
1940 ● John Hawken → Keyboards for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964)
1941 ● Peter Birrell → Bassist for British Invasion novelty/comedy pop-rock ‘n’ roll Freddie & The Dreamers, “I’m Telling You Now” (#1, 1965), became a taxi driver and sometime bit-part TV actor
1941 ● Danny Rapp / (Daniel Earl Rapp) → Frontman and singer for early rock ‘n’ rollers Danny & The Juniors, “At The Hop” (#1, 1958), committed suicide on 4/5/1983, age 41
1942 ● Tommy Roe → Rockabilly singer and songwriter turned archetypal bubblegum popster, “Dizzy” (#1, 1969)
1942 ● Mike Millward → Rhythm guitar for Merseybeat pop-rock The Fourmost, “A Little Loving” (UK #6, 1964), died from complications of leukemia on 3/7/1966, age 23
1943 ● Bruce Milner → Piano and organ for one hit wonder pop-folk Every Mother’s Son, “Come On Down To My Boat” (#6, 1967)
1944 ● Don Dannemann → Co-founder, guitar and vocals for two hit wonder folk-pop The Cyrkle, “Red Rubber Ball” (#2, 1966) and “Turn Down Day” (#16, 1966), signed by Brian Epstein and supported The Beatles on their 1966 US tour, became a successful commercial “jingle” writer, including the “Uncola” song for 7Up
1944 ● Richie Furay / (Paul Richard Furay) → Guitar and vocals, founding member of folk-rock Buffalo Springfield (“For What It’s Worth”, #17, 1967) and country-rock Poco (“You Better Think Twice”, #72, 1970), left in 1974 to co-found country-rock Souther Hillman Furay Band with Chris Hillman of The Byrds and J. D. Souther (“Fallin’ In Love”, #27, 1974), solo bandleader, became a Christian minister, reunited with Buffalo Springfield in 2010
1945 ● Steve Katz → Guitarist and vocalist, founding member of jazz/-blues-rock fusion The Blues Project, “The Flute Thing” (1968), then founded Blood, Sweat & Tears, “Spinning Wheel” (#2, 1969), producer
1946 ● Clint Holmes → One hit wonder novelty pop singer, “Playground In My Mind” (#2, 1973), briefly a TV personality with Joan Rivers’ The Late Show and on Entertainment Tonight, performed in Las Vegas and Atlantic City night clubs since the 70s
1949 ● Billy Joel → Superstar pop-rock singer/songwriter and keyboardist with 17 US #1 albums and 35 Top 40 singles, including “It’s Still Rock And Roll To Me” (#1, 1980)
1950 ● Tom Petersson → Bass and vocals for power pop Cheap Trick, “I Want You To Want Me” (#7, 1979) and “The Flame” (#1, 1988)
1953 ● John Edwards → Bassist since 1986 for long-lived Brit psych-boogie rock Status Quo, “Pictures Of Matchstick Men” (#12, 1968) plus 58 UK Top 40 singles including “Come On You Reds” (UK #1, 1994)
1960 ● Marc Duncan → Bassist for punk-rock The Vibrators, “Automatic Lover” (UK #35, 1978)
1962 ● David Gahan → Lead vocals for electro-dance/synth-pop Depeche Mode, “Enjoy The Silence” (#8, 1990), went solo after 22 years, “Kingdom” (Dance/Pop #1, 2007)
1962 ● P.D. Heaton / (Paul Heaton) → Vocals for Brit jangle-guitar pop-rock The Housemartins, “Caravan Of Love” (UK #1, 1986), then alt pop-rock The Beautiful South, “A Little Time” (UK #1, 1990), solo
1969 ● Peter Wilkinson → Co-founder, backing vocals and bass guitar for 90s alt rock Brit-pop Cast, “Flying” (UK #4, 1996), left in 2002 for sessions work, rejoined Cast in 2010
1971 ● Guigsy McGuigan / (Paul McGuigan) → Bassist for Grammy-nominated Brit pop Oasis, “Wonderwall” (#8, 1996), the band had 22 consecutive UK Top 10 hits, left the band in 1999
1975 ● Nik Vikedal / (Ryan Vikedal) → Drummer for Canadian post-grunge hard rock Nickelback, “How You Remind Me” (#1, 2001), left the band in 1995
1979 ● Pierre Bouvier → Lead singer for French-Canadian pop-punk Simple Plan, “Perfect” (#24, Canada #5, 2003)

May 10
1888 ● Max Steiner → Austrian-American child-prodigy musician turned three-time Oscar-winning film score composer for over 300 films from the 30s through the 60s, including King Kong (1933), Gone With The Wind (1939), Casablanca (1942) and The Caine Mutiny (1954), died from heart failure on 12/28/1971, age 83
1899 ● Fred Astaire / (Frederick Austerlitz) → Grammy-winning, renowned film and Broadway stage dancer, actor, vocalist and choreographer, appeared in 31 musical movies, often with dance partner Ginger Rogers, sang multiple, enduring popular songs without a charting single, died of pneumonia on 6/22/1987, age 88
1920 ● Bert Weedon → Virtuoso Brit pop-instrumental guitarist, “Guitar Boogie Shuffle” (UK #10, 1959), published the Play In A Day guitar manual, session work for Tommy Steele, Cliff Richard, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and others
1930 ● Scott Muni / (Donald Allen Munoz) → Deep, gravel-voiced AM Top 40, then FM rock DJ and program director for WNEW-fm (New York) during the heyday of free-format, progressive rock radio in the 70s and 80s, died from complications following a stroke on 9/28/2004, age 74
1934 ● Gary Owens / (Gary Altman) → Los Angeles radio DJ, TV announcer and film voice actor best known for his droll, deadpan narration and announcements on the sketch-comedy series Rowan & Martin’s Laugh In from 1968 to 1973 , later issued several comedy albums, hosted The Gong Show and various radio programs, died from complications of diabetes on 2/12/2015, age 80
1935 ● Larry Williams → Early R&B/rock & roll guitarist, singer and songwriter, “High School Dance” (#5, R&B #1, 1957), his classic songs have been covered by The Beatles “Dizzy, Miss Lizzy” (1965), The Jam and others, died from gunshot wounds in a suspected but unproven suicide on 1/2/1980, age 44
1938 ● Henry Fambrough → Original member, lead and baritone vocals for Grammy-winning Motown and later Atlantic R&B/soul quintet The Spinners, “Then Came You” (#1, 1974) plus eleven other Top 20 hits in the 70s, continues to front the band on tours into the 10s
1940 ● Arthur Alexander → Country and soul genre-melding songwriter and singer, “Anna (Go To Him),” #68, R&B #10, 1962) and other songs covered by The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley and others, wrote and recorded sporadically through the 80s, continued to perform with his own band until his death from a heart attack on 6/9/1993, age 53
1944 ● Jacki” Lomax / (John Richard Lomax) → Star-crossed Liverpudlian blue-eyed soul singer and guitarist, friend of George Harrison and Eric Clapton, co-founded and sang lead vocals for Merseybeat pop-rock The Undertakers, one of the strongest Britbeat groups that never charted on any Top 40 in the U.S. or U.K., first act to be signed to The Beatles‘ Apple Records, received support from Paul McCartney and George Harrison, who wrote his single “Sour Milk Sea” (1970), but he never achieved the expected stardom, played with various bands, toured intermittently and did session work until his death from cancer of 9/15/2013, age 69
1946 ● Dave Mason / (David Thomas Mason) → Guitar, vocals and songwriter for folk-psych-rock Traffic, “Paper Sun” (#94, UK #5, 1967), then solo, “We Just Disagree” (#12, 1977), session work Eric Clapton, Delaney & Bonnie, George Harrison and others
1946 ● Donovan / (Donovan Phillip Leitch) → Brit psych-folk-pop singer/songwriter, “Mellow Yellow” (#2, 1966), once labeled Britain’s answer to Bob Dylan
1946 ● Graham Gouldman → Bubblegum-pop songwriter, wrote hits for Herman’s Hermits, The Hollies and others, then co-founder, guitar and vocals for soft pop/art-rock 10cc, “I’m Not In Love” (#2, 1975) and 10 UK Top 30 hits, later formed pop-rock Wax, “Bridge To Your Heart” (UK #12, 1987)
1947 ● Jay Ferguson / (John Arden Ferguson) → Vocals, keyboards and songwriting for jazz-rock Spirit, “I Got A Line On You” (#25, 1969), left and co-founded hard rock Jo Jo Gunne, “Run Run Run” (#27, 1972), went solo, “Thunder Island” (#9, 1978), now composes film scores
1951 ● Ronald Banks → Vocals for R&B/soul The Dramatics, “In The Rain” (#5, R&B #1, 1972), died of a heart attack on 3/4/2010, age 58
1952 ● Sly Dunbar / (Lowell Fillmore Dunbar) → Reggae drummer, with session partner Robbie Shakespeare as The Riddim Twins and later Sly & Robbie worked with Peter Tosh, Robert Palmer, Jimmy Cliff, Grace Jones, Joe Cocker, The Rolling Stones and others
1952 ● Lee Brilleaux / (Lee Collinson) → Founding member, lead vocals and harmonica for Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, “Milk And Alcohol” (UK #9, 1979), died of cancer on 4/7/1994, age 41
1957 ● Karl Hyde → Vocals and guitar for electro/trance/dance-pop Underworld, “Two Months Off” (Dance/Club #2, 2002)
1957 ● Sid Vicious / (John Simon Ritchie) → Vocals and bass guitar for renowned and reviled punk-rock The Sex Pistols, “God Save The Queen” (UK #2, 1977), died of a heroin overdose on 2/2/1979, age 21
1960 ● Bono / (Paul Hewson) → Vocalist and guitarist for Irish mega-star rockers U2, “With Or Without You” (#1, 1987) plus five consecutive US #1 albums between 1987 and 1997, poet, peace activist
1962 ● Gary Daley → Vocals and keyboards for new romantic/dance-pop China Crisis, “Wishful Thinking” (UK #9, 1984) and “Working With Fire And Steel” (Dance/Club #27, 1984)
1967 ● Young M.C. / (Marvin Young)) → Pop-rap rhymer and singer, “Bust A Move” (#7, Rap #2, 1989)
1968 ● Richard Patrick → Guitarist for alt rock/industrial group Filter, “Take A Picture” (Alt Rock #3, 1999), then alt rock/post-grunge supergroup Army of Anyone, “Goodbye” (Mainstream Rock #3, 2006), also worked with Nine Inch Nails
1980 ● Jason Dalyrimple → Vocals for urban R&B/dance-club brother quartet Soul For Real, “Candy Rain” (#2, 1995)
1985 ● Ashley Poole → Vocals for R&B/dance-pop all-girl quartet Dream, “He Loves U Not” (#2, 2000)
1991 ● Ray Dalton → Gospel and R&B singer and songwriter best known for his lead vocal contribution to Macklemore & Ryan Lewis‘ 2011 hit song “Can’t Hold Us” (Worldwide #1, 2013)

May 11
1888 ● Irving Berlin / (Israel Isidore Baline) → Siberian-born lyricist, pianist and composer of dozens of enduring pop, stage show and film hits including “White Christmas” (1940), the best selling single of all time, died in his sleep on 9/22/1989, age 91
1905 ● “Kansas” Joe McCoy / (Joseph McCoy) → Delta and Chicago blues slide guitarist and songwriter, recorded often with his younger brother, Charlie, wrote the now-standard jazz-pop “Why Don’t You Do Right?” (1941), his songs have been covered by Led Zeppelin, John Mellencamp and others, died from heart disease on 1/28/1950, age 44
1931 ● Marilyn King → Vocalist for complex and sophisticated four-part harmony 30s, 40s and 50s Big Band/pop sibling singing group The King Sisters, “The Hut-Sut Song” (Top 30, 1944), recorded with her sisters on hundreds of albums and numerous radio specials over three decades and in the musical-variety TV program The King Family Show (1966-1969) and holiday specials thereafter, died from cancer on 8/7/2013, age 82
1934 ● Bobby Black / (Robert Lee Black) → Pedal steel guitar for country-rock/boogie/swing bar band Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen, “Hot Rod Lincoln” (#9, 1972), later played with New Riders Of The Purple Sage, Dolly Parton, the Texas Tornados and many others, released two albums of steel guitar Hawaiian music in the 00s
1935 ● Kit Lambert / (Christopher Lambert) → Assistant film director (The Guns of Navarone and From Russia With Love), record producer, record executive (Track Records, which signed Jimi Hendrix and John Lennon), band manager for The Who until 1971, eccentric but drug-abusing impresario, died from a cerebral hemorrhage after falling down a set of stairs at his mother’s house on 4/7/1981, age 45
1936 ● Tony Barrow / (Anthony F. J. Barrow) → Brit journalist and record company publicist, represented The Beatles for Decca Records in 1962 and, until 1968 with Brian Epstein‘s NEMS Enterprises, coining the term “Fab Four”, later formed his own firm and was chief PR man in Europe during the 70s for The Kinks, Bay City Rollers, The Monkees and others, returned to journalism in the punk era, died from natural causes on 5/14/2016, age 80
1938 ● Carla Bley / (Carla Borg) → 60s Free Jazz composer, keyboardist and bandleader
1938 ● Bruce LanghorneGreenwich Village folk revival guitarist and songwriter, session musician for multiple 60s folk acts but best known for playing with Bob Dylan on several mid-60s albums central to the emergence of electric folk-rock, and as the inspiration for the title character on Dylan‘s “Mr. Tambourine Man” (1965), later became a macadamia nut farmer in Hawaii and creator of Brother Bru-Bru’s Hot Sauce, a salsa-style condiment, died of kidney failure on 2/14/2017, age 78
1941 ● Eric Burdon → Vocals and eventual frontman for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964), then funk-blues-jazz-rock War, “Cisco Kid” (#2, 1973)
1943 ● Arnie Silver / (Arnie Satin (Silver)) → Baritone vocals for doo wop a cappella harmony turned early garage-rock/dance craze The Dovells, “Bristol Stomp” (#2, 1961)
1943 ● Les Chadwick → Bassist for British Invasion/Merseybeat pop-rock Gerry & The Pacemakers, “How Do You Do It?” (#9, 1964)
1947 ● Butch Trucks / (Claude Hudson Trucks) → Founding member and drummer for Southern rock The Allman Brothers Band, “Ramblin’ Man” (#2, 1973), died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head on 1/24/2017, age 69
1955 ● J.J. Jeczalik / (Jonathan Jeczalik) → Record producer, sessionman and founding member of avant-garde synth-pop The Art Of Noise, “Kiss” featuring Tom Jones (#31, Dance/Club #18, UK #5, 1988)
1955 ● Mark Herndon → Drummer for country-pop-rock Alabama, “Love In The First Degree” (#15, 1982)
1955 ● Susan Stenger → Bass and vocals for guitar-centric, “noise” rock quartet Band Of Susans, “Where Have All The Flowers Gone” (1988)
1965 ● Avtar Singh → Founding member and bassist for mixed-race, Indian/Brit dance-pop Cornershop, “Brimful Of Asha” (Dance #35, UK #1, 1998)
1966 ● Doom Schneider / (Christoph Schneider) → Drummer for heavy metal/industrial Kraut rock Rammstein, “Sehnsucht” (Mainstream Rock #20, 1998)
1983 ● Holly Rachel Vukadinovi?) / (Holly Rachel Vukadinovi?) → Yugoslavian-Australian TV actress and pop singer, “Kiss Kiss” (UK #1, 2002)
1986 ● Kieren Webster → Bass guitarist, songwriter and vocalist for Scottish retro-rock/ska punk The View, “Same Jeans” (UK #3, 2007)

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