Posts Tagged musician birthdays

This Week’s Birthdays (September 16 – 22)

Happy Birthday this week to:

September 16
1913 ● Florence Greenberg → New Jersey housewife who parlayed an unlikely hit record by an unknown teen group, The Shirelles (“I Met Him On A Sunday” #49, 1958) into an improbable career as a music executive and owner of Scepter Records, the leading independent label of the 60s and home to Dionne Warwick, The Isley Brothers, B.J. Thomas and many others, sold out and retired in 1976, died from complications of a stoke on 11/2/1995, age 82
1921 ● Jon Hendricks / (John Carl Hendricks) → NEA Jazz Master, Emmy, Grammy and Peabody award winning jazz-pop singer and songwriter noted as one-third of the 50s-60s vocal trio Lambert, Hendricks & Ross and an originator of “vocalese,” the art of putting lyrics to existing jazz instrumentals, won a Grammy award with Bobby McFerrin for “Another Night In Tunisia” from the Manhattan Transfer album Vocalese, for which he wot all of the lyrics, later taught college-level jazz history courses and wrote a stage show and TV documentary about the genre, died from natural causes on 11/22/2017, age 96
1925 ● Charlie Byrd → Classically-trained acoustic jazz guitarist who brought Brazilian bossa nova music to the mainstream in North America with the album Jazz Samba (#1, 1963) with Stan Getz and the instrumental “Desalinate” (#15, AC #4, 1962), continued to record mostly easy listening jazz-pop and authored a book on guitar instruction, died from cancer on 12/2/1999, age 74
1925 ● B.B. King / (Riley B. King) → The reigning “King of the Blues” and important electric guitarist, “The Thrill Is Gone” (#15, R&B #1,1970), influenced countless electric blues and rock guitarists, #3 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time list, died in his sleep on 5/14/2015, age 89
1934 ● Richard Blandon → Lead singer for early doo-wop The Dubs (“Could This Be Magic,” #23, 1957), left then returned to a reformed group which he fronted into the 80s, died on 12/30/1991, age 57
1941 ● Joe Butler → Drummer for 60s hit making folk-rock quartet The Lovin’ Spoonful, “Summer In The City” (#1, 1966)
1942 ● Bernard Calvert → Bassist for British Invasion pop-rock The Hollies, “Bus Stop” (#5, 1966)
1944 ● Betty Kelly → Vocals for Motown R&B/soul girl group The Velvelettes, “Needle In A Haystack” (#45, 1964), left to join R&B/pop-soul girl group Martha & The Vandellas, “Dancing In The Street”” (#2, 1964)
1944 ● Winston Grennan → The “Master Drummer of Jamaica,” session drummer and bandleader credited with creating the “One Drop” ska and rocksteady-based beat that underlies reggae music and the “Flyers” beat that precursed reggae, worked with Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Desmond Dekker, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, and many other top reggae, ska, soul and pop acts, died from cancer on 10/27/2000, age 56
1948 ● Kenney Jones → Drummer for Brit raunch/psych-pop-rock The Small Faces, “Itchycoo Park” (#16, 1968), hard-rockers The Faces, “Stay With Me” (#17, 1971), replaced deceased Keith Moon in 1979 in The Who, “You Better You Bet” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1981)
1948 ● Ron Blair → Original bassist for Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” (#3, 1981), left in 1982 for session career and rejoined in 2002
1950 ● David Bellamy → With brother Homer, one half of country-pop The Bellamy Brothers, “Let Your Love Flow” (#1, 1976) and 35 other Country Top 40 hits
1953 ● Alan Leslie Barton → Guitarist for Brit pop/rock novelty-party quartet Black Lace, “Agadoo” (UK #2, 1984), joined pop-rock Smokie in 1986 as guitarist and lead vocalist, died when the band’s tour bus crashed in Germany on 3/23/1995, age 41
1954 ● Colin Newman → Vocals, guitar and songwriting for art/punk then post-punk then electronic Wire, “Eardrum Buzz” (Modern Rock #2, 1989), solo artist, producer and co-founder of the Swim Records label
1954 ● Frank Reed / (Frank Kevin Reed) → Joined a reconstituted version of Chicago R&B/smooth soul The Chi-Lites (“Have You Seen Her?”, #3, 1971) in 1988 as lead vocalist and remained with the band until his death on 2/26/2014, age 59
1956 ● Dave Blood / (Dave Schultise) → Ph.D. candidate in economics at Purdue University turned punk rock bassist in punk quartet Dead Milkmen, left the band in 1995 to move to Serbia to work and study, returned to the U.S. in the aftermath of the NATO bombing campaign in 1999, committed suicide by drug overdose on 3/10/2004, age 47
1960 ● Ean Evans / (Donald Evans) → Bass guitarist in multiple rock bands in the Southeastern U.S., joined raunchy Southern rockLynyrd Skynyrdd in 2001, replacing original and deceased bassist Leon Wilkeson, continued with the band until his death from lung cancer on 5/6/2009, age 48
1961 ● Bilinda Butcher → Guitar and vocals for art-prog-rock, “shoe-gazing” pioneers My Bloody Valentine, “Only Shallow” (Modern Rock #27, 1992)
1962 ● Stephen Jones → Founder, guitarist, vocals and frontman of Brit lounge/melodramatic pop group Babybird, “You’re Gorgeous” (UK #3, 1996), solo, novelist
1963 ● Richard Marx → Pop/rock singer and songwriter, “Right Here Waiting” (#1, 1987) turned Grammy-winning adult contemporary balladeer, “Dance With My Father” (Song of the Year 2003)
1964 ● The Snake / (David Sabo) → Co-founder and lead guitar for New Jersey-based hair metal/pop-metal Skid Row (“I Remember You,” #6, 1989), teenage friend of rocker Jon Bon Jovi and original lead guitarist in JBJ‘s band
1968 ● Marc Anthony / (Marco Antonio Muñiz) → Multi-talented, Grammy-winning Latin dance-pop (“tropical salsa”) singer, “I Need To Know” (#3, 1991), film actor
1969 ● Justine Frischmann → Co-founder guitar and vocals for alt rock/Britpop Suede, left for mixed-gender, post-punk alt rock Elastica, “Connection” (Modern Rock #2, 1994), now an abstract painter
1976 ● Shannon Noll → Australian pop-rock singer, runner-up of the first series of Australian Idol (2003), ten consecutive Aussie Top 10 singles, including “What About Me?” (AUS #1, 2004)
1976 ● Tina Barrett → Vocals for pre-fab teen pop S Club 7, “Never Had A Dream Come True” (#10, 2001)
1977 ● Musiq Soulchild / (Talib Johnson) → R&B/neo-soul, funk, blues and gospel fusion hip hop artist, “Halfcrazy” (#16, 2002)
1981 ● Christopher Cester → Drummer and backing vocals for Aussie hard rock/garage punk Jet, “Cold Hard Bitch” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1984 ● Katie Melua / (Ketevan Melua) → Jazz-pop/adult contemporary singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Nine Million Bicycles” (UK #5, 2005), album Piece By Piece (Jazz Albums #3, 2006)
1992 ● Nick Jonas → Singer and songwriter in teen-pop ballad trio the Jonas Brothers, “Burnin’ Up” (#5, 2008), actor

September 17
1923 ● Hank Williams / (Hiram King Williams) → The “Father of Contemporary Country Music” with 35 oft-covered Country Top 10 hits, including “Hey, Good Lookin'” (Country #1, 1951), died in his limo to a show on 1/1/1953, age 29
1923 ● Ralph Sharon → Grammy-winning jazz pianist, composer and arranger known for his 50 year collaboration with Tony Bennett and the signature song “I Left My Heart In San Francisco” (#19, 1962), continued to perform with his own jazz-pop ensemble until his death on 3/31/2015, age 91
1926 ● Bill Black → Early rock ‘n roll bassist in Elvis Presley‘s backing band and his own Bill Black Combo, “Smokie” (1959), died from a brain tumor on 10/21/1965 at age 39
1926 ● Brother Jack McDuff / (Eugene McDuffy) → Hard bop and jazz-soul Hammond B-3 organist and bandleader known for his funky, bluesy style and mentorship to young guitarist George Benson in his mid-60s quartet, continued to record until his death from heart failure on 1/23/2001, age 74
1929 ● Sil Austin / (Silvester “Sil” Austin) → Jazz saxophonist in the 40s, switched to more accessible blues and funk-pop sound in the 50s and scored several hits, including “Slow Walk” (#17, R&B #3, 1956) , continued to record and perform into the 90s before dying from prostate cancer on 9/1/2001
1937 ● Phil Cracolici → Lead vocals for one hit wonder blue-eyed doo wop quintet The Mystics, “Hushabye” (#20, 1959)
1939 ● LaMonte McLemore → Founding member and vocals for R&B/soul-pop The 5th Dimension, “Up, Up And Away” (1967), professional photographer for Playboy, Jet, Ebony, Harper’s Bizarre and others
1947 ● Lol Crème / (Laurence Neill “Lol” Crème) → Guitar, vocals and songwriter for soft pop-rock 10cc, “I’m Not In Love” (#2, 1975), co-founded pop duo Godley & Crème, “Cry” (#16, 1985) and joined art-rock/synth-pop Art Of Noise in 1998, now a music video producer.
1947 ● Jim HodderSteely Dan backing band drummer 1972-74, session drummer for Sammy Hagar and David Soul, drowned in his backyard swimming pool on 6/5/1990, age 42
1950 ● Fee Waybill / (John Waldo Waybill) → Lead singer and songwriter for camp-rock pop-rock satirists The Tubes, “She’s A Beauty” (#10, 1978), producer for Bryan Adams, Richard Marx and others
1952 ● Steve Sanders → Baritone singer and member of country/gospel/folk The Oak Ridge Boys, “Elvira” (#5, Country #1, 1981) replacing original member William Lee Golden from 1987 to 1995, left the band and died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on 6/10/1998, age 45
1953 ● Steve Williams → Drummer for early and influential Welsh heavy metal band Budgie, “Nude Disintegrating Parachutist Woman” (1971)
1959 ● Will Gregory → Vocals and synthesizer with Alison Goldfrapp in Brit electro-dance-pop due Goldfrapp, “Number 1” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)
1961 ● Ty Tabor → Lead guitar, songwriting and vocals for progressive metal/Christian rock King’s X, “It’s Love” (Mainstream Rock #6, 1990)
1962 ● Baz Luhrmann / (Mark Anthony Luhrmann) → Australian screenwriter, film director and one hit wonder novelty-pop/spoken word artist, “Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen)” (#45, Adult Top 40 #10, 1999), directed Romeo + Juliet (1996) and Moulin Rouge! (2001) and Australia (2008)
1962 ● BeBe Winans / (Benjamin Winans) → Grammy-winning R&B/soul and gospel crossover singer in duets with sister CeCe (Priscilla), “Close To You” (R&B/Hip Hop #21, 2009) or solo, “Thank You” (Dance/Club #6, 1998)
1963 ● Jarvis Crocker → Singer for alt rock/Britpop Pulp, “Common People” (UK #2, 1995)
1966 ● Doug E. Fresh / (Douglas E. Davis) → Rapper, producer and pioneering beat boxer known as “The Human Beat Box” for his near-perfect imitations of drum machines and effects using his mouth, lips, gums and throat, frontman for hip hop Get Fresh Crew, “The Show” (Hip Hop #3, 1985) and solo, “Freaks/I-ight (Alright)” (Dance #3, 1994)
1968 ● Anastacia Lyn Newkirk → R&B/dance-pop singer, “One Day In Your Life” (Dance/Club #1, 2002)
1968 ● John Penney → Vocals for indie punk-rock Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, “Not Sleeping Around” (Modern Rock #1, 1992)
1968 ● Lord Jamar / (Lorenzo Dechalus) → DJ and MC for alt hip hop trio Brand Nubian, “Don’t Let It Go To Your Head” (#54, Rap #3, 1998)
1969 ● Adam Devlin / (Adam Tadek Gorecki) → Guitarist and songwriter for indie rock The Bluetones, “Slight Return” (UK #2, 1996)
1969 ● Candy Dulfer → Dutch alto saxophonist, “On & On” (Smooth Jazz #13, 2009), sessions and backing bands for Van Morrison, Prince and others, collaborated with Dave Stewart, “Lily Was Here” (UK #6, 1990)
1969 ● Keith Flint / (Keith Charles Flint) → Vocals for “big beat” electronic dance/rap The Prodigy, “Firestarter” (#30, 1996)
1970 ● Vinnie / (Vincent Brown) → Vocals and sampling for pop-rap crossover trio Naughty By Nature, “O.P.P.” (#6, 1991) and Grammy-winning Poverty’s Property, Best Rap Album for 1995
1971 ● Paul Winterhart → Drummer for post-Britpop psych/mystic rock Kula Shaker, “Hush” (Mainstream Rock #19, 1997)
1973 ● A. Jay Popoff / (Alan Jay Popoff) → Frontman and vocals for post-grunge punk-pop Lit, “My Own Worst Enemy” (#51, Mainstream Rock #6, 1999)
1974 ● Jimmy Fallon → Stand-up comedian, film and TV actor, awards show host, former Saturday Night Live cast member and comedy/satire music singer/songwriter with the Grammy-nominated album The Bathroom Wall (#47, 2002)
1976 ● Maile Misajon → 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
1977 ● Ryan Dusick → Drummer for alt funk-rock Maroon 5, “She Will Be Loved” (#5, 2004)
1979 ● Chuck Comeau → Drummer for French-Canadian pop-punk Simple Plan, “Perfect” (#24, Canada #5, 2003)
1979 ● Flo Rida / (Tramar Lacel Dillard) → People’s Choice award Southern rapper, singer/songwriter and MC, “Low” feat. T-Pain (#1, 2007) and 12 other U.S. Top 20 hits through 2015
1985 ● Jonathan Jacob Walker → Bassist for emo-pop Panic! At The Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (#7, 2006)

September 18
1929 ● Teddi King / (Theodora King) → One hit wonder jazz and pop singer in the 40s and 50s, “Mr. Wonderful” (#18, 1956), faded during Beatlemania but made a brief comeback in the 70s before dying from lupus disease on 11/18/1977, age 48
1933 ● Jimmie Rodgers / (James Frederick Rodgers) → Pop and easy listening singer, “Honeycomb” (#1, 1957) and 13 other Top 40 hits in the late 50s and 1960s
1940 ● Frankie Avalon / (Francis Thomas Avallone) → Pretty-boy teen idol pop singer, “Venus” (#1, 1959) and 11 other Top 40 hits between 1958 and 1962, then film actor, Beach Blanket Bingo (1965)
1945 ● Bam King / (Alan King) → Guitar and vocals for Brit pub rock/blue-eyed soul Ace, “How Long” (#3, 1975)
1945 ● P. F. Sloan / (Philip Gary Schlein) → Folk, pop and rock singer and songwriter known best for co-writing numerous 60s hits with Steve Barri, in particular the protest anthem “Eve Of Destruction” (#1, 1965) for Barry McGuire and “Secret Agent Man” (#3, 1966) for Johnny Rivers, recorded singles and several albums under various pseudonyms and band names, performed until just prior to his death from pancreatic cancer on 11/15/2015, age 70
1949 ● Kerry Livgren → Founding member, guitarist and songwriter for prog/heartland rock Kansas, wrote “Carry On Wayward Son” (#11, 1977) and “Dust In The Wind” (#6, 1978), converted to Christianity and formed religious-tinged hard rock AD with other Kansas bandmates, solo
1951 ● Dee Dee Ramone / (Doug Colvin) → Bassist for seminal punk rock band The Ramones, “Rockaway Beach” (#66, 1978), died of a drug overdose on 6/5/2002, age 50
1955 ● Keith Morris → Frontman and lead vocals for hardcore L.A. punk rockers Black Flag, Circle Jerks and supergroup Off!
1961 ● Frosty Beedle / (Martin Beedle) → Drummer for New Wave pop-rock Cutting Crew, “(I Just) Died In Your Arms Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1962 ● Joanne Catherall → Vocals for late-70s synth-pop pioneers The Human League, “Don’t You Want Me” (#1, 1981)
1962 ● Richard Walmsley → Writer and producer with electro-dance-pop The Beatmasters, “Warm Love” (Dance #16, 1990), the trio also produced hits for Cookie Crew, Yazz and P.P. Arnold, and albums for Erasure, Pet Shop Boys and others
1965 ● John David Dunlop → Canadian guitarist, composer, producer and music recording engineer, lead guitarist for hard rock The Full Nine and, since 2008, power trio Triumph (“All The Way,” Mainstream Rock #2, 1983)
1966 ● Nigel Clark → Lead singer and bassist for goofball Brit power pop trio Dodgy, “Good Enough” (UK #4, 1996)
1966 ● Spike Spice / (Ian Spice) → Co-founder and drummer for Brit pop-rock Breathe, “Hands To Heaven” (#3, 1988)
1967 ● Mike Heaton → Drummer for Brit pop-rock Embrace, “Gravity” (Mainstream Rock #36, UK #7, 2004)
1967 ● Ricky Bell → Vocals for R&B/teen pop then hip hop/new jack swing vocal quartet New Edition, “If It Isn’t Love” (#7, 1988), then Bell Biv Devoe, “Poison” (#3, 1990)

September 19
1921 ● Billy Ward / (Robert L. Williams) → Child prodigy pianist and frontman, vocals and arranger for early R&B/doo wop Billy Ward & The Dominoes, (“Sixty Minute Man,” #17, R&B #1, 1951), the group spawned the careers of soul giants Clyde McPhatter and Jackie Wilson, died in a long-term care hospital on 2/16/2002, age 80
1931 ● Brook Benton / (Benjamin Franklin Peay) → R&B/soul and early rock ‘n’ roll singer, “The Boll Weevil Song” (#2, 1961), plus comeback track “Rainy Night In Georgia” (#4, 1979) and 21 other Top 40 hits, died from complications of spiral meningitis on 4/9/1998, age 56
1934 ● Brian Epstein → Music entrepreneur, record store owner, manager of The Beatles from 1962 until his death, managed other Liverpool acts including Gerry & The Pacemakers, Cilla Black and The Cyrkle, died from an accidental overdose of barbiturates and alcohol on 8/27/1967, age 32
1935 ● Nick Massi / (Nicholas Macioci) → Bass guitarist, arranger and vocalist for Top 40 pop vocal quartet The Four Seasons, “Big Girls Don’t Cry” (#1, 1962), died of cancer on 12/24/2000, age 65
1937 ● Paul Siebel → Greenwich Village folk scene singer/songwriter and guitarist known solely for other artist’s cover versions of his songs, including “Louise” and “Any Day Woman,” dropped out of sight in the 70s after issuing two critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful albums
1940 ● Bill Medley → Blue-eyed soul singer and, with Bobby Hatfield, one half of hugely successful pop-rock duo The Righteous Brothers, “Unchained Melody” (#4, 1965), solo career including the Grammy-winning “(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life” (#1, 1987)
1940 ● Paul Williams → Grammy-winning pop songwriter, wrote “An Old Fashioned Love Song” (#4, 1971) for Three Dog Night, “Rainbow Connection” from The Muppet Movie, and “We’ve Only Just Begun” (#2, 1970) and “Rainy Days And Mondays” (#2, 1971) for the Carpenters, solo act pop singer (“Waking Up Alone,” #60, 1972) and actor
1940 ● Sylvia Tyson / (Sylvia Fricker) → Canadian singer in influential male/female folk harmony vocal duo Ian & Sylvia, wrote “You Were On My Mind” for folk-pop We Five (#32, 1965)
1941 ● Mama Cass / (Ellen Naomi Cohen) → Vocals and percussion for folk-pop quarter The Mamas & The Papas (“Monday Monday,” #1, 1966), enjoyed a brief solo singing (“Dream A Little Dream Of Me,” #12, UK #11, 1968) and early 70s TV acting career before dying of a heart attack in Harry Nilsson‘s London apartment on 7/29/1974, age 32
1942 ● Danny Kalb → Folk- and blues-rock guitarist, composer and songwriter, co-founded jazz/-blues-rock fusion The Blues Project, “Flute Thing” (1966), solo career with numerous albums and collaborations
1942 ● Freda Payne → R&B/soul-pop singer, “Band of Gold” (#3, 1970), TV and film actress
1943 ● Mike Arnone → Vocals for Italian-American doo wop The Duprees, “You Belong To Me” (#7, 1962)
1945 ● David Bromberg → Multi-string instrumentalist and blues-folk and roots rock singer/songwriter, “The Holdup” (1971), now owns a violin sales and repair shop
1946 ● John Coghlan → Drummer for Brit psych-boogie rock Status Quo, “Pictures Of Matchstick Men” (#12, 1968)
1949 ● Twiggy / (Lesley Hornby) → Iconic 60s model and later stage, screen and TV actress, one hit wonder pop singer, “Here I Go Again” (UK #17, 1976)
1951 ● Daniel Lanois → Grammy-winning Canadian record producer, guitarist and composer, best known producing Peter Gabriel‘s So (1986), U2‘s The Joshua Tree (1987) and Achtung Baby (1991), plus albums by Brian Eno, Bob Dylan and others, recorded nearly 20 solo albums beginning with Acadie (1989)
1952 ● Nile Rodgers / (Nile Gregory Rodgers) → Guitarist, co-founder and co-writer for R&B/disco band Chic, “Le Freak” (#1, 1978), influential record producer, composer and arranger, produced albums for David Bowie (Let’s Dance, 1983), Madonna (Like A Virgin, 1984), Mick Jagger (She’s The Boss, 1985) and others, continues to record, perform, write soundtracks and produce albums for others into the 10s
1955 ● Rex Smith → Stage and film actor and brief pop singer, debuted on Broadway in the lead role as Danny Zuko in ,em>Grease (1978), followed with a three-year recording career and the lone hit “You Take My Breath Away” (#10, 1979), returned to screen acting from the 80s through the 00s
1957 ● Rusty Egan → Drummer for New Wave power pop The Rich Kids, “Rich Kids” (UK #24, 1978) and New Romantic synth-pop Visage, “Fade To Grey”(UK #8, 1981), London nightclub DJ
1958 ● Lita Ford / (Carmelita Rosanna Ford) → Guitar, vocals and founding member of teenage all-girl hard rock group The Runaways, “Cherry Bomb” (1976), pop-metal solo career, “Close My Eyes Forever” (#8, 1988)
1964 ● Trisha Yearwood / (Patricia Lynn Yearwood) → Grammy-winning country singer, “How Do I Live” (#23, Country #2, 1996) and 28 other Country Top 40 hits, TV and occasional film actress, cookbook editor

September 20
1911 ● Frank De Vol → Music arranger, theme song composer and actor, arranged music for numerous 40s and 50s hits, including “Nature Boy” (#1, 1948) by Nat King Cole, produced “The Happening” (#1, 1967) for The Supremes from the soundtrack to the movie of the same name he wrote, issued a series of “mood music” albums and led his own radio orchestra, composed the theme songs to dozens of movies and TV shows, including My Three Sons and The Brady Bunch, appeared as a deadpan comic actor on numerous TV sitcoms, died from congestive heart failure on 10/27/1999, age 88
1917 ● Johnny Allen → Grammy-winning arranger, pianist, bandleader and producer, worked with both Motown and Stax Records for artists including The Temptations, Stevie Wonder and The Staple Singers, co-wrote the “Theme From Shaft” (#1, 1971) with Isaac Hayes and shared the Best Instrumental Arrangement award at the 14th Grammy Awards in 1972, continued to perform in various jazz bands into his 90s, died from pneumonia on 1/29/2014, age 96
1924 ● Gogi Grant / (Myrtle Audrey Arinsberg) → Mid-50s pop singer with five albums in two years and two Top 10 hits, “Suddenly There’s A Valley” (#9, 1955) and “The Wayward Wind” (#1, UK #9, 1956), the latter knocking Elvis Presley‘s “Heartbreak Hotel” from the #1 spot, faded from view during Beatlemania, died on 3/10/2016, age 91
1925 ● Bobby Nunn / (Ulyssess B. Nunn, Sr.) → R&B/doo wop singer with The Robins, “Smokey Joe’s Café” (#79, R&B #10, 1955), then as bass vocals for offshoot soul-pop The Coasters, but left before their big hits “Yakety Yak” (#1, 1958) and “Charlie Brown” (#2, 1959) and founded The Dukes in 1959, rejoined a new lineup of The Coasters in the mid-60s and toured and recorded with various versions of group through to his death from a heart attack on 11/5/1986, age 61
1930 ● Eddie Bo / (Edwin Joseph Bocage) → New Orleans-style jazz, blues and funk pianist, singer and prolific songwriter, released over 50 singles, including “Hook And Sling” (R&B #13, 1969) and the seminal funk song “Check Your Bucket,” wrote for and recorded with Art Tatum, Etta James and The Neville Brothers, among others, his “I’m Wise” was covered by Little Richard as “Slippin’ And Slidin'” (#33, R&B #2, 1956), May 22 is “Eddie Bo Day” in New Orleans, died following a heart attack on 3/18/2009, age 78
1938 ● Eric Gale → Jazz and session guitarist with a dozen of his own albums as frontman for various bands, plus appearances on over 500 other albums by Aretha Franklin, Joe Cocker, Billy Joel, Van Morrison, Paul Simon, Grover Washington, Jr. and many others over a 35 year career, died from lung cancer on 5/25/1994, age 55
1945 ● Sweet Pea Atkinson → Vocals for eclectic R&B and rock fusion Was (Not Was), “Walk The Dinosaur” (#7, 1989), solo
1946 ● Mick Rogers / (Michael Oldroyd) → Guitarist and songwriter with Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, “Blinded By The Light” (#1, 1977)
1948 ● Chuck Panozzo → Bassist for prototypical arena rockers Styx, “Too Much Time On My Hands” (#9, 1981)
1948 ● John Panozzo → Drummer for prototypical arena rockers Styx, “Too Much Time On My Hands” (#9, 1981), died from cirrhosis of the liver on 7/16/1996, age 47
1953 ● Ricci Martin / (Ricci James Martin) → Youngest son of actor and singer Dean Martin, collaborated with Beach Boy Carl Wilson (his future brother-in-law) on the 1977 album Beached, replaced his deceased brother, Dino Martin, in the 90s revival of the 60s teen bubblegum pop trio Dino, Desi & Billy with Desi Arnez, Jr. and Billy Hinsche (“I’m A Fool,” #17, 1965), sang his father’s hits and told stories in a long-running Vegas-style tribute show, died at home from unspecified causes on 8/3/2016, age 62
1954 ● Tony Destra → Original drummer for Philly glam-rock Cinderella, “Shelter Me” (Mainstream Rock #5, 1990), left in 1985 to join glam-metal Britny Fox, “Long Way To Love” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1988), died in car accident on 2/8/1987, age 32
1957 ● Alannah Currie → Vocals for New Wave synth-pop Thompson Twins, “Hold Me Now” (#3, 1983), now a sculptural art-furniture artist
1960 ● David Hemingway → Lead vocals for Brit jangle-guitar pop-rock The Housemartins, “Caravan Of Love” (UK #1, 1986), then co-founded alt pop-rock The Beautiful South, “A Little Time” (UK #1, 1990)
1960 ● Cowboy Wiggins / (Robert Wiggins) → MC and vocals for hip hop pioneers Grandmaster Flash And The Furious Five (“The Message,” R&B #4, 1982), the first hip hop group inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, died from complications of cocaine addiction on 9/8/1989, age 28
1966 ● Nuno Bettencourt → Portuguese guitarist and songwriter for funk metal/hard rock Extreme, “More Than Words” (#1, 1991), solo, various collaborations and frontman for several hard rock bands
1967 ● Gunnar Nelson → With twin brother Matthew, one half of the pop-metal sibling act Nelson, “(Can’t Live Without Your) Love And Affection” (#1, 1990), son of deceased pop-rocker Ricky Nelson
1967 ● Matthew Nelson → With twin brother Gunnar, one half of the pop-metal sibling act Nelson, “(Can’t Live Without Your) Love And Affection” (#1, 1990), son of deceased pop-rocker Ricky Nelson
1968 ● Ben Shepherd → Bassist in seminal grunge-rock group Soundgarden, “Black Hole Sun” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1994)
1979 ● Rick Woolstenhulme → Drummer for post-grunge pop-rock Lifehouse, “Hanging On A Moment” (Billboard Song of the Year 2001) and “You And Me” (#5, 2005)
1981 ● Keith Semple → Vocals in teen pop boy band One True Voice, “Sacred Trust / After You’re Gone” (UK #2, 2002)

September 21
1913 ● Janet Ertel / (Janet Ertel Bleyer) → Founding member and vocalist in close-harmony pop music girl group The Chordettes (“Mr. Sandman,” #1, 1954 and “Lollipop,” #2, 1958)), later married Cadence Records (the band’s label) founder and owner Archie Bleyer, with whom she had a daughter who went on to marry Cadence artist Phil Everly of The Everly Brothers, died of cancer on 11/22/1988, age 75
1923 ● Jimmy Young / (Leslie Ronald Young) → Pop singer, “Unchained Melody” (UK #1, 1955) and BBC Radio 2 DJ from 1973 to 2002
1932 ● Don Preston → Keyboards for Frank Zappa-led satirical rock group Mothers of Invention, “Brown Shoes Don’t Make It” (1967), sessions
1932 ● Graeme Goodall → Australian recording engineer, studio designer, record producer, co-founder of Island Records and prominent figure in the development of Jamaican music and its recording industry, worked with dozens of ska, reggae and pop acts, including The Wailers, The Skatalites and Desmond Decker, died from natural causes on 12/3/2014, age 82
1934 ● Leonard Cohen / (Leonard Norman Cohen) → Influential and oft-covered Canadian folk-pop singer/songwriter, “Bird On The Wire” (1969), Grammy-winning Album of the Year River: The Joni Letters (2007)
1936 ● Dickey Lee / (Royden Dickey Lipscomb) → Country-pop singer/songwriter, “Patches” (#6, 1962), then migrated to country music in the 70s and had 16 Country Top 40 hits, including “Rocky” (Country #1, 1975)
1943 ● David Hood → Bassist, session musician and founding member of the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section (also known as The Swampers), the renowned studio musician ensemble that recorded hundreds of songs and albums at Muscle Shoals Studio in Alabama, including hits byAretha Franklin, The Staple Singers, Paul Simon, Lynyrd Skynyrd and countless others, also toured with Traffic in the 70s and produced songs by Cher and Willie Nelson, among others
1944 ● Jesse Davis / (Jesse Ed Davis III) → Native American guitarist with a lone blues-rock solo album (Jesse Davis, 1971) featuring Eric Clapton, Gram Parsons and Leon Russell, performed with George Harrison‘s Concert For Bangladesh (1971) and became a highly-regarded session musician and producer, worked with Gene Clark, John Lennon, Jackson Browne (solo on “Doctor My Eyes,” #8, 1972), Taj Mahal and many others, died from a heroin overdose on 6/22/1988, age 43
1947 ● Don Felder → Lead guitar, vocals and songwriter for country-rock and pop Eagles, composed music to “Hotel California” (#1, 1976), solo and collaborations with former bandmates
1949 ● Colin Gibson → Brit bassist and composer, started with psych-pop band Skip Bifferty in the 60s, later joined Ginger Baker’s Air Force and did session work for Stefan Grossman, Alvin Lee, Steve Howe and others, co-wrote a UK TV sitcom and film soundtracks, collaborates and produces various projects into the 10s
1952 ● David Gregory → Lead guitarist 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
1954 ● Philthy Animal Taylor / (Philip John Taylor) → Drummer for punk-metal Motörhead, “Ace Of Spades” (UK #15, 1980), during periods away from the band did session work and collaborations with thrash metal artists, died from abusive lifestyle liver failure on 11/11/2015, age 61
1959 ● Corinne Drewerey → Vocals for Brit sophisti-pop Swing Out Sister, “Breakout” (#6, 1987)
1967 ● Faith Hill / (Audrey Faith Perry) → Five time Grammy-winning country-pop crossover star, “Breathe” (#2, 1999) and eight Country #1 hits, Billboard magazine’s #1 Adult Contemporary artist for 2009
1967 ● Timmy T / (Timothy Torres) → Rap-dance “freestyle” performer, “One More Try” (#1, 1991)
1967 ● Tyler Stewart → Drummer for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, “One Week” (#1, 1998)
1968 ● Jon Brooks → Drummer for “Madchester” alt rock The Charlatans UK, “The Only One I Know” (Mainstream Rock #37, 1991)
1968 ● Trugoy the Dove / (David Jude Jolicoeur) → MC and vocals for jazz rap and alt hip hop trio De La Soul, “Me Myself And I” (R&B #1, 1989)
1972 ● David Silveria → Drummer for nu metal Korn, “Here To Stay” (Mainstream #4, 2002)
1972 ● Liam Gallagher → Frontman and vocals for Grammy-nominated Brit pop Oasis, “Wonderwall” (#8, 1996), the band had 22 consecutive UK Top 10 hits, now fronts Beady Eye
1973 ● Jimmy Constable → Vocals and co-founding member of Brit teen-dance-pop boy band 911, covered The Bee Gees‘ “More Than A Woman” (UK #2, 1998) and Bobby Gosh‘s “A Little Bit More” (UK #1, 1999), a US #11 hit for Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show in 1976
1977 ● Sam Rivers → Bassist for rap-metal Limp Bizkit, “My Way” (Mainstream Rock #4, 2001)
1977 ● The-Dream / (Terius Youngdell Nash) → Grammy-winning rapper, songwriter and record producer, “Shawty Is A 10” (#17, 2007), co-wrote “Baby” for Justin Bieber (#5, 2010), “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)” for Beyoncé (#1, 2008) and other hit songs
1984 ● Wale / (Olubowale Victor Akintimehin) → Rapper with multiple collaborative singles and albums, including the BET Award-winning “Lotus Flower Bomb” (#38, R&B #1, Rap #3, 2011) featuring Miguel
1989 ● Jason Derülo / (Jason Desrouleaux) → R&B/urban soul singer/songwriter, actor and dancer, “Watcha Say” (#1, 2009)

September 22
1905 ● Pop Lewis / (Roy Lewis Sr.) → With his wife and four of their children in the “First Family of Bluegrass Gospel,” the Dove Award-winning singing and cornball comedy skit group The Lewis Family, toured nationally and issued over 60 albums of gospel music before his death on 3/23/2004, age 98
1913 ● Alvin LeRoy Holmes → Pop instrumental bandleader, film score composer and arranger, Smile (1975) and other films, died on 7/27/1986, age 72
1930 ● Joni James / (Giovanna Carmella Babbo) → Traditional pop vocalist, “You Are My Love” (#6, 1954) and sixteen other Top 40 hits in the 50s
1942 ● Mike Patto → Lead vocals and keyboards for blues-rock Spooky Tooth, “Feelin’ Bad” (#132, 1969), later co-founded hard rock Boxer but died of cancer before the band gained momentum on 3/4/1979, age 36
1943 ● Toni Basil / (Antonia Christina Basilotta) → New Wave one hit wonder singer, “Mickey” (#1, 1982), dancer, choreographer, actress and filmmaker
1944 ● Roger Nichols / (Roger Scott Nichols) → Nuclear power plant physicist turned eight-time Grammy-winning rock and pop music recording engineer for Steely Dan, John Denver, Frank Zappa, Rickie Lee Jones, Gloria Estefan, Bela Fleck and many other major acts, pioneered the now-commonplace technique of “digital drum replacement” by inventing the Wendel sampling computer, died from pancreatic cancer on 4/9/2011, age 66
1944 ● Sam Pace → Tenor vocals in R&B soul vocal group The Esquires (“Get On Up,” #11, 1967), died following a long illness on 1/7/2013, age 68
1951 ● David Coverdale → Songwriter and lead vocals for Deep Purple in 1974-76, recorded two solo albums and formed hard rock/hair metal Whitesnake in 1977, “Here I Go Again” (#1, 1987) and six other Mainstream Rock Top 40 hits
1952 ● Mark Panker → Guitarist for critically acclaimed but light selling alt pop-rock American Music Club (1991 album Everclear)
1953 ● Richard Fairbrass → Vocals for dance-pop Right Said Fred, “I’m Too Sexy” (#1, 1991)
1956 ● Debby Boone → Grammy-winning Christian and inspirational pop music singer, “You Light Up My Life” (#1, 1977), daughter of 50s pop crooner Pat Boone
1956 ● Doug Wimbish → Bassist for prog-funk-metal Living Colour, “Cult Of Personality” (#13, 1988) and Sugarhill Records studio session musician
1957 ● Johnette Napolitano → Singer/songwriter, bassist and founder of post-punk alt rock Concrete Blonde, “Joey” (Modern Rock #1, 1990), toured with Talking Heads as lead singer in 1996, solo
1957 ● Nick Cave → Aussie singer, songwriter and bandleader for goth-rock pioneers The Birthday Party, then alt rock Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds, “Where The Wild Roses Grow” (Australia #2, UK #11, 1995), formed garage rock Grinderman in 2007
1957 ● Peter Jones → Bassist for punk rock Public Image Ltd., “This Is Not A Love Song” (UK #5, 1983), currently owns a ceramic art studio
1958 ● Joan Jett / (Joan Marie Larkin) → Guitar, vocals and founding member of teenage all-girl hard rock group The Runaways, “Cherry Bomb” (1976), then founded and fronted Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, “I Love Rock N’ Roll (#1, 1981)
1958 ● Peter Nelson → Bassist for post-punk/alt rock New Model Army, “No Rest” (UK #28, 1985)
1965 ● Adam Cairns → Guitar and vocals for Irish grunge rock/alt metal Therapy?, “Screamager” (, 1993)
1966 ● Rhett Forrester → Lead vocals for 80s New York-based heavy metal Riot plus solo albums and collaborations with blues-metal guitarist Jack Starr and several second-tier metal bands, murdered in an apparent carjacking/shooting in Atlanta on 1/22/1994, age 27
1975 ● Mystikal / (Michael Tyler) → Dirty South rapper, “Danger (Been So Long)” (#14, Rap #3, 2001) with five solo albums and multiple collaborations as featured artist
1982 ● Billie / (Lianne Piper) → Singer and TV actress, “Because We Want To” (UK #1, 1998), the youngest (age 16) artist to debut at #1 on the UK charts

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This Week’s Birthdays (August 19 – 25)

Happy Birthday this week to:

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)

August 25
1918 ● Leonard Bernstein → Talented composer, conductor, pianist, director of the New York Philharmonic, wrote the music to many Broadway shows, including West Side Story (1957), died from pneumonia on 10/14/1990, age 72
1933 ● Wayne Shorter → Leading jazz and fusion saxophonist and composer, played with the Art Blakey‘s Jazz Messengers, joined the Miles Davis Quintet in 1964, co-founded jazz/rock fusion Weather Report, “Birdland” (1976), solo
1941 ● Christopher Augustine → Drummer for one hit wonder pop-folk Every Mother’s Son, “Come On Down To My Boat” (#6, 1967)
1942 ● Walter Williams → Vocals for R&B/Philly soul giants The O’Jays, “Love Train” (#1, 1973)
1944 ● Alan Parker → Lead guitar and vocals for Brit Invasion pop-rock Dave Clark Five, “Catch Us If You Can” (#4, 1965) and 11 other Top 25 hits in the US
1947 ● Pete Arnesen → Piano for glam rock/rock ‘n roll revival The Rubettes, “Sugar Baby Love” (, US #37, 1974)
1949 ● Gene “The Demon” Simmons / (Chaim Witz) → Bass, vocals and frontman for campy hard/glam-rock Kiss, “Detroit Rock City” (#7, 1976), released two solo albums, producer, talent scout, entrepreneur, author and film and TV actor
1949 ● Henry Paul → Founding member, lead singer and guitarist for Southern hard rock Outlaws (“Hurry Sundown,” #34, 1975), left in 1977 to form and front country-rock Henry Paul Band, in 1991 founded Nashville-based Blackhawk (“I’m Not Strong Enough To Say No,” #2, 1995), reformed Outlaws in 2005 and continues to record and tour
1950 ● Willy De Ville / (William Boray) → Guitar, vocals and frontman for blue-eyed soul/roots rock/punk rock Mink De Ville, “Storybook Love” (1987), solo and collaborations with notable blues and R&B stars, died of pancreatic cancer on 8/7/2009, age 58
1951 ● James Warren → Co-founder, bassist and vocalist for New Wave pop-rock The Korgis, “Everybody’s Got To Learn Sometime” (#18, 1980)
1951 ● Rob Halford → Vocals for influential “New Wave” heavy metal band Judas Priest, “Breaking The Law” (1980)
1952 ● Geoff Downes → Founding member and keyboards for New Wave synth-pop The Buggles, “Video Killed The Radio Star” (#40, 1979), joined prog rock Yes for one album (Drama, 1980), left to form prog/pop-rock Asia, “Heat Of The Moment” (#4, 1982), solo
1954 ● Elvis Costello / (Declan Patrick McManus) → Innovative, eclectic, multi-genre songwriter, singer and pub rock/punk/New Wave guitarist, frontman for The Attractions, “Veronica” (#19, 1989), 17 US Top 40 albums, has recorded classical-, jazz- and adult pop-based albums
1956 ● Matt Aitken → Member of the multi-hit UK songwriting/production trio Stock-Aitken-Waterman (SAW), “Respectable” (#1 for Rick Astley, 1987)
1961 ● Billy Ray Cyrus → Once touted as the “Next Elvis,” country-pop one hit wonder crossover singer, debut single “Achy Breaky Heart” (#4, 1992) spawned the worldwide “line dance” craze, debut album Some Gave All spent 17 weeks on the US album chart, father of actress Miley Cyrus
1962 ● Vivian Patrick Campbell → Guitarist with hard rock/metal Def Leppard, “Love Bites” (#1, 1988), Dio and Whitesnake
1963 ● Candida Doyle → Keyboard and backing vocals for alt rock/Britpop Pulp, “Common People” (UK #2, 1995)
1965 ● Erik Dahlgren → Drummer for Swedish alt rock The Wannadies, “You And Me Song” (UK #18, 1996)
1966 ● Terminator X / (Norman Rogers) → Rapper and DJ for influential early hip hop group Public Enemy, “Fight The Power” (Rap #1, 1989), solo, producer, retired to his South Carolina ostrich stud farm in 2003
1967 ● Jeff Tweedy → Co-founder, singer, songwriter and guitars for seminal roots rock trio Uncle Tupelo, after its breakup founded alt country-rock Wilco, “Outasite (Outta Mind)” (Mainstream Rock #22, 1997)
1969 ● Luke Scott → Guitarist in Brit lounge/melodramatic pop group Babybird, “You’re Gorgeous” (UK #3, 1996)
1970 ● Jo Dee Messina → Country-pop crossover singer with 12 Country Top 10 hits, six of them #1’s, including “That’s The Way” (#25, Country #1, 2000)
1985 ● Wynter Gordon / (Diana Gordon) → Dance-pop singer and songwriter, “Dirty Talk” (Dance #1, 2010), co-wrote “Sugar” for Flo Rida (#5, 2009)
1987 ● Amy MacDonald → Scottish soft folk-pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Don’t Tell Me That It’s Over” (UK #48, 2010)
1988 ● Alexandra Burke → Brit R&B/neo-soul and electro-pop singer, won the 2008 UK talent show The X Factor, debut single “Hallelujah” (UK #1, 2008) plus four other UK Top 10 hits in two years
1988 ● Ray Quinn → English TV soap opera actor, dancer and singer, runner-up in the 2006 UK talent show The X Factor, “Doing It My Way” (UK #1, 2007)

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This Week’s Birthdays (August 12 – 18)

Happy Birthday this week to:

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 → One hit wonder R&B/blues singer and harmonica player, “Fanny Mae” (#38, R&B #1, 1960), 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)

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

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This Week’s Birthdays (July 15 – 21)

Happy Birthday this week to:

July 15
1905 ● Dorothy Fields → Prolific, Oscar-winning stage and screen librettist/lyricist, wrote over 400 Broadway, age 68 tunes, first woman elected to Songwriters Hall of Fame, long-time collaborator with Jimmy McHugh, died of a stroke on 3/28/1974, age 68
1913 ● Cowboy Copas / (Lloyd Estel Copas) → Country music singer in the 40s and 50s with nine Country Top 10 songs and a lone crossover hit, “Alabam” (#63, Country #1, 1960), otherwise known for being killed in the same plane crash that took country star Patsy Cline‘s life on 3/5/1963, age 49
1936 ● H.B. Barnum / (Hidle Brown Barnum) → Child actor turned novelty song singer (as “Pee Wee” Barnum or just “Dudley”), pianist and songwriter for doo wop The Robins (“Quarter To Twelve”, 19578) and instrumental pop solo artist (“Lost Love,” #35, 1961), later produced records for Aretha Franklin, Frank Sinatra, The Supremes and others, and scored TV specials and advertising jingles
1939 ● Tommy Dee → With collaborator Carol Kay, wrote and performed the pop-rock tribute to Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J. P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, “Three Stars” (#11, 1959)
1944 ● Millie Jackson / (Mildred Jackson) → R&B/soul singer “If Loving You Is Wrong I Don’t Want To Be Right” (1975)
1945 ● Peter Lewis → Lead guitar for 60s San Francisco folk-roots-psych rock Moby Grape, “Omaha” (#88, 1967)
1946 ● Linda Ronstadt → Lead vocals for folk-pop Stone Poneys, “Different Drum” (#13, 1967), then prolific and multi-genre, Grammy-winning country-pop-rock solo career, “You’re No Good” (#1, 1975), duet with Aaron Neville, “Don’t Know Much” (#2, 1989) and 17 other Top 40 hits
1947 ● Ian McCredie → Guitarist for Scot bubblegum pop-rock Middle Of The Road, “Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep” (UK #1, 1971)
1947 ● Roky Erickson / (Roger Kynard Erickson) → Singer, songwriter, guitarist, founding member of pioneering psych-rock 13th Floor Elevators (“You’re Gonna Miss Me,” #55, 1966) and early casualty of LSD and other hallucinogens, committed to a mental institution after the band broke up in 1969, returned to recording as a solo artist in the 90s
1947 ● Peter Banks / (Peter William Brockbanks) → Original lead guitarist for prog rock pioneers Yes (1968-70), pushed out and co-founded prog-rock Flash, “Small Beginnings” (#29, 1972), went solo and performed with various bands and Yes offshoots and tribute bands until his death from heart failure on 3/7/2013, age 65
1948 ● Artimus Pyle / (Thomas Delmar Pyle) → Drummer for raunchy Southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Sweet Home Alabama” (#8, 1974), solo and sessions
1949 ● Trevor Horn → Bassist, songwriter and co-founder of New Wave synth-pop The Buggles, “Video Killed The Radio Star” (#40, 1979), producer, lead vocals and bassist for Yes, then full producer for such diverse acts as Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Paul McCartney, Tom Jones, Rod Stewart, Tina Turner and others
1951 ● Cool Ruler Isaacs / (Gregory Anthony Isaacs) → Jamaican superstar reggae singer with a languid, suave and sexy delivery that became known as “lovers rock,” recorded over 70 studio albums of material in his 30-year career, including Night Nurse (Reggae Albums #16, 2002) and many self-penned hit songs, died from lung cancer after years of drug abuse on 10/25/2010, age 59
1952 ● David Pack → Co-founder, guitarist principal songwriter and lead singer for pop-rock Ambrosia (“Biggest Part Of Me,” #3, 1980), also produced albums for multiple rock and pop artists (Phil Collins, Linda Ronstadt, Steve Vai and others) plus various concerts and events, including Bill Clinton‘s presidential inaugurations in 1993 and 1997, continues to tour and perform with Ambrosia and others into the 10s
1952 ● Jeff Carlisli → Founding member and guitarist for Southern arena rockers .38 Special, “Hold On Loosely” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1981)
1952 ● Johnny Thunders / (John Genzale, Jr.) → Hard-living guitarist and vocalist for influential glam-rock/proto-punk New York Dolls (“Personality Crisis,” 1973), also fronted Brit punk The Heartbreakers and released several solo albums, died under suspicious circumstances but of a suspected methadone overdose on 4/23/1991, age 38
1953 ● Alicia Bridges → One hit wonder disco diva, “I Love The Night Life (Disco ‘Round)” (#5, 1978)
1956 ● Marky Ramone / (Marc Bell) → Drummer for seminal punk-rockers The Ramones, “Sheena Is A Punk Rocker” (#81, 1977)
1956 ● Satch Satriani / (Joe Satriani) → Guitar virtuoso, instructor and mentor, solo artist, brief bandmember of Mick Jagger‘s band (1988) and Deep Purple (1984), sessions, currently lead guitarist with blues-funk-rock supergroup Chickenfoot
1956 ● Ian Curtis → Singer, lyricist, guitarist and often frontman for post-punk/synth-pop Joy Division, “Love Will Tear Us Apart” (Dance/Club #42, 1980), hung himself at home after succumbing to depression and epilepsy on 5/18/1980, age 23
1966 ● Jason John Bonham → Rock drummer and son of Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham, performed with Zeppelin members individually and as a band on numerous occasions following his father death in 1980, toured and recorded with Paul Rodgers, UFO, Joe Bonamassa, Foreigner and others
1970 ● Chi Ling Dai Cheng → Bassist for Grammy-winning alt heavy metal Deftones, “Change (In The House Of Flies)” (Mainstream Rock #9, 2000)
1973 ● John Dolmayan → Drummer for Grammy-winning, Armenian-American hard rock/alt metal System Of A Down, “Aerials” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2002)
1977 ● Ray Toro → Lead guitar for 00s alt rock/emo band My Chemical Romance, “Welcome To The Black Parade” (#9, 2006)
1983 ● Mark Anthony Myrie / (Buju Banton (Mark Anthony Myrie)) → Jamaican dancehall reggae singer and Rastafarian, “Champion” (Dance #15, 1995)

July 16
1925 ● Cal Tjader / (Callen Radcliffe Tjader, Jr.) → Highly successful, Grammy-winning non-Latino Latin jazz drummer, vibraphonist and bandleader with eight charting albums in the 60s and 70s, including Soul Sauce (#52, R&B #8, 1965), credited with the early development of Latin rock and acid jazz, died of a heart attack while on tour in the Philippines on 5/5/1982, age 56
1927 ● Mindy Carson → Pre-rock ‘n’ roll traditional pop vocalist, often in duets with Guy Mitchell but with several charting songs of her own, including “Wake The Town And Tell The People” (#13, 1955), stopped recording and moved to Broadway musicals in the 60s
1939 ● Denise LaSalle / (Ora Denise Allen) → Contemporary urban blues singer and songwriter with over a hundred songwriting credits and several self-written hits R&B hits as a singer, including “Now Run And Tell That” (#46, R&B #3, 1972), “Trapped By A Thing Called Love” (#13, R&B #1, 1971) and the zydeco remake “My Tu-Tu” (UK #6, 1985), performed on the gospel and blues festival circuits, inducted to the Rhythm and Blues Hall of Fame in 2015, reigned as the “Queen of the Blues” at her death from complications of leg amputation surgery on 1/8/2018, age 78
1940 ● Tony Jackson → Bass and vocals for Merseybeat band The Searchers, “Needles And Pins” (#13, 1963), died from a variety of ailments related to long-term alcohol abuse on 8/18/2003, age 63
1942 ● Desmond Dekker / (Desmond Dacres) → Influential and first Jamaican ska/reggae star, singer and frontman for The Aces, “The Israelites” (#8, 1968), died of a heart attack on 5/25/2006, age 63
1944 ● Thomas Boggs → Drummer for short-lived blue-eyed soul The Box Tops (“The Letter,” #1, 1967), left the industry in the early 70s for a long career as a restaurateur, died of cancer on 5/5/2008, age 63
1949 ● Ray Major → Guitarist for early Brit glam-rockers Mott The Hoople, “All The Young Dudes” (#37, 1972), which became Mott in 1974 and British Lions in 1976
1952 ● Stewart Copeland → Drummer for Brit prog/avant-garde rock Curved Air, “Back Street Luv” (UK #4, 1974), then co-founded post-punk New Wave pop-rock The Police, “Every Breath You Take” (#1, 1983), solo under the pseudonym Klark Kent, collaborations and session work, classical music and film score composer
1961 ● Mark McEntee → Founder, co-frontman and guitarist for Aussie power pop Divinyls, “I Touch Myself” (#4, 1991)
1964 ● Polly Hancock → Guitar and vocals for Brit indie-folk-pop Popinjays, “Vote Elvis” (Modern Rock #17, 1988)
1971 ● Edward Joel Kowalczyk → Lead vocals for alt rock Live, “Lightning Crashes” (Modern Rock #5, 1995), solo
1978 ● TJ / (Tito Joseph Jackson) → With brothers Tariano Adaryll “Taj” and Taryll Adren Jackson, vocals in R&B/urban soul trio 3T, “Anything” (#15, 1995), sons of Tito and nephews of Michael Jackson

July 17
1928 ● Vince Guaraldi / (Vincent Dellaglio) → Grammy-winning jazz pianist, bandleader and composer noted for penning the music and arrangements for the nearly all of the animated Peanuts television specials and films, including the signature “Linus & Lucy,” died from an aortic aneurysm on 2/6/1976, age 47
1938 ● Stanley Bronstein → Founding member and saxophonist for jazz-psych-rock Elephant’s Memory, “Mongoose” (Top 100, 1969), which became the backing band for John Lennon and Yoko Ono in the early 70s, worked with John Lennon on his 1972 album ‘Some Time In New York City’
1942 ● Gale Garnett / (Gale Zoë Garnett) → New Zealand-born Canadian pre-The Beatles one hit wonder pop singer with the Grammy-winning “We’ll Sing In The Sunshine” (#4, , 1964), later fronted psych-pop The Gentle Reign and became a journalist and TV actress
1942 ● Spencer Davis → Welsh guitarist and frontman for 60s British pop-rock The Spencer Davis Group, “Gimme Some Lovin'” (#7, 1966), producer
1945 ● Eric McCredie → Bassist for Scot bubblegum pop-rock Middle Of The Road, “Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep” (UK #1, 1971), died on 10/6/2007, age 62
1947 ● Abraham Laboriel, Sr. → Mexican-American session and tour bassist with over 4,000 recording s to his credit, including work with George Benson, Barbra Streisand, Chris Isaak, Elton John, Madonna and many others in nearly every genre, issued three solo albums
1947 ● Wolfgang Flür → Electronic percussion for German electro-rock pioneers Kraftwerk, “Autobahn” (#25, 1975)
1947 ● Mick Tucker → Drummer and backing vocals for glam pop-rock Sweet, “Ballroom Blitz” (#5, 1973), died of leukemia on 2/14/2002, age 54
1948 ● Ron Asheton → Guitarist for influential proto-punk The Stooges, “I Wanna Be Your Dog” (1969), #29 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time, found dead in his home on 1/6/2009 having died of a heart attack a day or two earlier, age 60
1949 ● Geezer Butler / (Terence Butler) → Longtime bassist and lyricist for hard rock/gloom metal Black Sabbath, “Paranoid” (#61, 1970) and “Psycho Man” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1998), founding member of heavy metal supergroup Heaven & Hell in 2006
1949 ● Mike Vale → Bassist for bubblegum-pop Tommy James & The Shondells, “Hanky Panky” (#1, 1966) and psych-pop, “Crimson And Clover” (#1, 1968)
1950 ● Phoebe Snow (Phoebe Ann Laub) → Poet, songwriter and folk-pop-jazz singer, “Poetry Man” (#5, 1974), backing vocals and collaborations with multiple other artists, died from complications of a brain hemorrhage on 4/26/2011, age 60
1952 ● Chet McCracken → Drummer for California soul-pop-rock The Doobie Brothers, “Listen To The Music” (#11, 1972)
1952 ● Nicolette Larson → Country-rock backing vocalist and country-pop solo artist, “Lotta Love” (#8, 1979), died from cerebral edema and liver failure on 12/16/1997, age 45
1957 ● Bruce Crump → Drummer for Southern rock power-guitar band Molly Hatchet, “Flirtin’ With Disaster” (#42, 1979), then Gator Country
1963 ● Regina Belle → R&B-jazz-gospel singer/songwriter, Grammy-winning duet with Peabo Bryson, “A Whole New World” (#1, 1993)
1966 ● Lou Barlow → Bassist for influential indie/cult rock Dinosaur Jr., “Start Choppin'” (Modern Rock #3, 1993)
1967 ● Stokely Williams → Lead singer and drummer for new jack swing R&B/soul-pop sextet Mint Condition, “What Kind Of Man Would I Be?” (#17, 1996)
1970 ● Mandy Smith → Dance-pop singer, model, ex-wife of Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman whom she started dating in 1983 at age 13 (he was then 47) and married in 1989, divorced 1992, Wyman‘s son dated Mandy‘s mother.
1971 ● DJ Minute Mix / (Jarrett Cordes) → Innovative brother hip hop, smooth soul, urban R&B and prog rap duo P.M. Dawn, “Set Adrift On Memory Bliss” (#3, Dance/Club #6, 1991), stepson of George Brown, founding member of soul/funk Kool & The Gang
1982 ● Natasha Hamilton → Vocals for Brit dance-pop vocal trio Atomic Kitten, “Whole Again” (UK #1, 2000)
1985 ● Tom Fletcher → Guitar and vocals for Brit pop-rock boy band McFly, “All About You” (UK #1, 2005)
1987 ● Jeremih / (Jeremy Felton) → Contemporary R&B/hip hop singer and songwriter with slow jam “Birthday Sex” (#4, R&B #1, 2009) and three other Top 20 hits

July 18
1909 ● Deek Watson / (Ivory Watson) → Founding member, tenor vocals, trumpet and guitar for pioneering black R&B/doo wop group The Ink Spots, “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” (#2, R&B #1, 1943), continued with various incarnations of the group through the 50s, died on 11/4/1969, age 60
1924 ● Earl Beal → Founding member and baritone vocals for one hit wonder R&B/doo wop vocal quartet The Silhouettes, “Get A Job” (#1, 1958), died on 3/22/2001, age 76
1929 ● Screamin’ Jay Hawkins / (Jelacy Hawkins) → Outrageously flamboyant early rock ‘n’ roll singer, pianist and stage performer, “I Put A Spell On You” (1956), died following surgery for an aneurysm on 2/12/2000, age 70
1931 ● Papa Dee Allen / (Thomas Sylvester Allen) → Percussion and vocals for laid-back R&B/soul-funk War, “Spill The Wine” (#3, 1970), died from a heart attack during a performance on 8/30/1988, age 57
1935 ● Johnny Funches → First tenor and lead vocals for R&B/doo wop, soul-funk and disco The Dells, “Stay In My Corner” (#10, R&B #1, 1968), died 1/23/1998, age 62
1938 ● Ian Stewart → Founding member and first keyboardist for The Rolling Stones, dismissed from the band in 1963 but continued as road manager and session pianist, died of a heart attack in his doctor’s waiting room on 12/12/1985
1939 ● Brian Auger → Underappreciated jazz-rock keyboardist, composer and bandleader The Trinity, Oblivion Express, solo
1939 ● Dion / (Dion DiMucci) → Doo wop, pop and rock ‘n’ roll vocalist, songwriter and bandleader, Dion & The Belmonts, solo, “Runaround Sue” (#1, 1961) and 19 other Top 40 in the 60s
1941 ● Martha Reeves → Vocals and frontwoman for Motown R&B/pop girl group Martha & The Vandellas, “(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave” (#4, 1963), solo, Detroit city councilwoman
1941 ● Lonnie Mack / (Lonnie McIntosh) → Pioneering blues-rock guitarist, early user of the tremolo arm (“whammy bar”) on electric guitar and blue-eyed soul balladeer, his “Memphis” (#5, 1963) was only the fourth instrumental rock single to break the Billboard Top 5 and his album The Wham Of That Memphis Man! (1964) was Guitar World magazine’s #1 of 50 landmark albums of all time, died of natural causes on 4/21/2-016, age 74
1943 ● Robin MacDonald → Guitarist for British Invasion pop-rock Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas, “Little Children” (#7, 1964)
1945 ● Danny McCulloch / (Daniel Joseph McCulloch) → Guitarist for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964)
1946 ● Tim Lynch → Guitar, harmonica and vocals for eclectic rock ‘n’ roll/proto-punk cult band The Flamin’ Groovies, album Shake Some Action reached #142 on the Billboard 200 chart
1948 ● Cesar Zuiderwijk → Drummer for Dutch hard rock Golden Earring, “Radar Love” (#13, 1974), over 40 hits and 30 gold and platinum albums in the Netherlands
1948 ● Phil Harris → Guitar and vocals for Brit pub rock/blue-eyed soul Ace, “How Long” (#3, 1975)
1949 ● Craig Fuller → Singer/songwriter, guitarist and co-founding member of country-rock Pure Prairie League, “Amie” (#27, 1973), left to serve a six month jail sentence for draft evasion, formed California light country-rock American Flyer (Let Me Down Easy,” #80, 1976) in the late 70s with Eric Kaz from Blues Magoos and Steve Katz from Blood, Sweat & Tears, joined Little Feat (“Let It Roll,” Rock #3, 1988) in 1987 and reformed PPL in 1996, continues to perform with variations of both bands
1949 ● Wally Bryson → Guitarist 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) and power pop Fotomaker, “Miles Away” (#63, 1978)
1950 ● Sir Richard Branson → Business magnate, founder and CEO of Virgin Group, which includes the Virgin Records label, Virgin Megastores and Virgin Atlantic Airways
1950 ● Glenn Hughes → Biker character in campy concept disco group The Village People, “Y.M.C.A.” (#2, 1979), died of lung cancer on 3/4/2001, age 50
1954 ● Ricky Scaggs / (Richard Lee Scaggs) → Country-bluegrass megastar singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Highway 40 Blues” (Country #1, 1983), eleven time Grammy winner and 1982 Country Music Association singer of the year
1955 ● Terry Chambers → Co-founder and drummer 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
1957 ● Julian Keith Levene → Roadie for prog rock Yes, then guitarist for an early lineup of influential and acclaimed punk-ska-dance-rock The Clash, “Rock The Casbah” (#8, 1982) and later lead guitar and songwriter for post-punk Public Image Ltd., “This Is Not A Love Song” (UK #5, 1983)
1958 ● Nigel Twist → Drummer for post-punk anthem rockers The Alarm, “Sold Me Down The River” (Mainstream #2, 1989)
1962 ● Jack Irons → Journeyman drummer for funk-rock Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Californication” (Modern Rock #1, 2000), hard rock Eleven, “Reach Out” (Mainstream Rock #40, 1994) and post-grunge/alt rock kings Pearl Jam, “Last Kiss” (#2, 1999), sessions and tours for Neil Young, Joe Strummer and others
1975 ● Daron Malakian → Guitarist for Grammy-winning, Armenian-American hard rock/alt metal System Of A Down, “Aerials” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2002)
1978 ● Tony Fagenson → Drummer for teen punk-pop trio Eve 6, “Inside Out” (#28, Mainstream Rock #5, 1998)
1982 ● Ryan Cabrera → Acoustic pop-rock guitarist and songwriter, “On The Way Down” (#15, 2004)

July 19
1925 ● Sue Thompson / (Eva Sue McKee) → Youthful-voiced, teen-audience novelty pop singer, “Sad Movies (Make Me Cry)” (#5, 1961), then mature country-pop duet and solo artist, “Big Mable Murphy” (Country #50, 1975)
1937 ● Karen J. Dalton / (Karen J. Cariker) → Relatively unknown but influential early 60s Greenwich Village singer/songwriter who interpreted country, pop, Motown, blues and traditional folk songs in a style that was often compared to jazz singer Billie Holiday, contemporary of and occasional collaborator with Fred Neil, Bob Dylan, Tim Hardin and the Holy Modal Rounders, died in obscurity from AIDS on 3/19/1993, age 55
1937 ● George Hamilton IV → Late 50s teen idol pop singer with 10 chart hits in four years, including “A Rose And A Baby Ruth” (#6, 1956), switched to country-pop and rockabilly in the 60s and charted 40 country hits through the 70s, including “Abilene” (#15, Country #1, 1963), toured and performed into the 00s, died following a heart attack on 9/17/2014, age 77
1941 ● Vikki Carr / (Florencia Cardona) → Pop vocalist, “It Must Be Him” (#3, 1966), then successful Latin-pop singer, including Grammy-winning album Cosas Del Amor (1991)
1944 ● Commander Cody / (George Frayne IV) → Vocals, keyboards and frontman for country-rock/boogie/swing bar band Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen, “Hot Rod Lincoln” (#9, 1972)
1946 ● Alan Gorrie → Base and vocals for Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974)
1947 ● Bernie Leadon → Guitar, banjo, mandolin and vocals for country rock Flying Burrito Brothers and Linda Ronstadt‘s backing band, which became country rock/L.A. rock Eagles, “One Of These Nights” (#1, 1975), quit in 1976 to pursue a solo career
1947 ● Brian May → Founding member and guitarist for camp rock/mock-opera/hard pop Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody” (#9, 1976) and “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” (#1, 1980), solo, “Driven By You” (Mainstream Rock #9, 1993), film score composer and astronomy author, #39 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
1948 ● Keith Godchaux → Keyboards and backing vocals for rock’s longest, strangest trip Grateful Dead, “Sugar Magnolia” (#91, 1973), duo with wife Donna, died following a car crash on 7/23/1980, age 32
1952 ● Allen Collins / (Larkin Allen Collins, Jr.) → Hard luck guitarist and founding member of raunchy Southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd (“Sweet Home Alabama,” #8, 1974), survived the October 20, 1977 plane crash that killed several bandmembers and crew, then co-founded Rossington-Collins Band (“Welcome Me Home,” Mainstream Rock #9, 1988), lost his first wife during pregnancy in 1980, became paralyzed from the waist down after a car accident in 1986 that killed his then-girlfriend, died from complications of pneumonia on 1/23/1990, age 37
1956 ● Nikki Sudden / (Adrian Godfrey) → Underrated post-punk songwriter and guitarist, journeyman lead singer for his own bands and side projects, including 80s post-punk Swell Maps and the Jacobites, died from a heart attack on 3/26/22006, age 49
1960 ● Kevin Haskins / (Kevin Michael Dompe) → Drummer for seminal goth-rock Bauhaus, “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” (1979) and goth-pop Love And Rockets, “So Alive” (#3, 1989)
1968 ● Ged Lynch → Drummer for dance-pop Black Grape, “In The Name Of The Father” (UK #8, 1995)
1971 ● Urs Bühler → Tenor for pre-fab Euro-pop vocal quartet Il Divo, “Unbreak My Heart” (Adult Contemporary #33, 2005)
1976 ● Eric Prydz → Swedish DJ and dance-pop producer using a variety of project names, including Pryda, Sheridan, Dirty Funker and Moo, “Call on Me” (Dance/Club #29, 2004)
1979 ● Michelle Heaton → Singer for teen dance-pop Liberty X, “Just A Little” (UK #1, 2002)

July 20
1933 ● Buddy Wayne Knox → Early rockabilly and “Tex-Mex” sound pioneer, wrote and performed “Party Doll” (#1, 1957), becoming the first artist to pen his own #1 hit in the rock ‘n’ roll era, died of lung cancer on 2/14/11999, age 65
1934 ● Bob Krasnow / (Robert Alan Krasnow) → Music industry executive with a long career at several key labels, started at King Records in the 50s, founded Blue Thumb in the 60s, expanded Warner Brothers into R&B in the 70s, revived Elektra Records in the 80s and 90s at one time or another worked with artists as varied as Captain Beefheart, Chaka Khan, George Benson, Björk and Metallica, died from organ failure on 12/11/2016, age 82
1943 ● Tony Joe White → Country-pop singer and songwriter, “Pork Salad Annie” (#8, 1969), wrote “Rainy Night In Georgia”, covered by Brook Benton (#4, 1970), Ray Charles, Hank Williams, Jr. and others
1943 ● Dennis Yost → Founding member, drummer and lead singer for soft Southern rock The Classics IV (“Spooky,” #3, 1967 and “Stormy,” #5, 1968), kept the band going through the 70s after several band members left to eventually form Atlanta Rhythm Section, continued on the oldies circuit until he suffered a brain injury in a fall and died two years later from respiratory failure on 12/7/2008, age 65
1944 ● T.G. Sheppard / (Billy Neal Browder) → Urban country crossover singer, “I’ve Loved ‘Em Every One” (#37, Country #1, 1981)
1945 ● John Lodge → Bass and vocals for Brit prog rock then pop-rock The Moody Blues, “Nights In White Satin” (#2, 1967) and “Your Wildest Dreams” (#9, 1986)
1945 ● Kim Carnes → Throaty-voiced singer, Grammy-winning “Bette Davis Eyes” (#1, 1981), later country music songwriter
1946 ● Wendy Richard → One hit wonder pop singer, duet with Mike Sarne “Come Outside” (UK #1, 1962), longtime cast member of Brit TV soap opera Eastenders
1947 ● Carlos Santana → Guitarist, vocals, songwriter and frontman for Latin-rock Santana, “Black Magic Woman” (#4, 1970), solo, “Smooth” (#1, 1999), awarded eight Grammys for his Supernatural album (2000)
1947 ● Tony Thorpe → Lead guitar and vocals for glam rock/rock ‘n roll revival The Rubettes, “Sugar Baby Love” (UK #1, US #37, 1974)
1948 ● James Hooker / (James Hooker Brown, Jr.) → Founding member and pianist for Grammy-winning Southern rock Amazing Rhythm Aces (“Third Rate Romance,” #14, Country #11, CAN #1), after breakup in the early 80s joined Steve Winwood‘s touring band as keyboardist and co-wrote “Freedom Overspill” (#20, Main #4, UK #69, 1986), later led country/folk Nanci Griffith‘s backing band for 20 years and self-released several solo albums
1952 ● Jay Jay French / (John French Segall) → Guitarist for heavy metal Twisted Sister, “We’re Not Gonna Take It” (#21, 1983)
1955 ● Jem Finer / (Jemremy Max Finer) → Banjo for Irish folk-punk-rock The Pogues, “Tuesday Morning” (Rock #11, 1993)
1956 ● Paul Cook → Drummer for premier punk rockers the Sex Pistols, “God Save The Queen” (UK #2, 1977) and punk rock supergroup Greedy Bastards
1957 ● Merlina DeFranco → Vocals for teen bubblegum-pop The DeFranco Family, “Heartbeat-It’s A Lovebeat” (#3, 1973)
1958 ● Michael McNeil → Keyboards for Scottish New Wave pop-rock Simple Minds, “(Don’t You) Forget About Me” ($1, 1985)
1959 ● James Irvin → Vocals for Brit New Wave synth-pop Furniture, “Brilliant Mind” (UK #21, 1986)
1961 ● Martin Gore → Keyboards for electro-dance/synth-pop Depeche Mode, “Enjoy The Silence” (#8, 1990)
1962 ● Dig Wayne / (Timothy Wayne Ball) → Lead vocals for Brit dance-pop-rock Jo Boxers, “Boxer Beat” (UK #3, 1983)
1964 ● Tim Kellett → Keyboards and trumpet for Brit soul-pop Simply Red, “Holding Back The Years” (#1, 1986), then trip-hop/electronica trio Olive, “You’re Not Alone” (Dance/Club #5, 1997)
1964 ● Chris Cornell / (Christopher John Boyle) → Frontman, lead vocals and guitar for seminal grunge-rock group Soundgarden (“Black Hole Sun,” Mainstream Rock #1, 1994), Audioslave (“Be Yourself,” #32, Mainstream Rock #1, 2005) plus five solo albums and numerous soundtrack contributions, hanged himself in a Detroit hotel room following a performance by a reformed Soundgarden on 5/17/2017, age 52
1966 ● Andrew Levy → Founding member, bassist, keyboards and songwriter for acid-jazz/funk The Brand New Heavies, “Sometimes” (UK #11, 1997)
1966 ● Craig Gannon → Rhythm guitarist for 80s Scottish New Wave pop-rock Aztec Camera, jangle-pop-rock The Bluebells, “Young At Heart” (UK #1, 1983) and indie rock The Smiths, “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” (UK #10, 1984), now a television and film composer/producer and session guitarist for multiple artists
1966 ● Stone Gossard → Founding member and rhythm guitarist for post-grunge/alt rock kings Pearl Jam, “Last Kiss” (#2, 1999), previously with grunge rock Green River and Mother Love Bone, solo
1969 ● Vitamin C / (Colleen Ann Fitzpatrick) → Co-founder, frontwoman and vocalist for punk-pop Eve’s Plum, “I Want It All” (Modern Rock #30, 1993), solo, “Smile” (#7, 1999), actress
1970 ● Sam Watters → Vocals for a cappella hip hop harmony group Color Me Badd, “I Wanna Sex You Up” (#2, 1991)
1971 ● Alison Krauss → Folk-bluegrass singer, songwriter and fiddler, “When You Say Nothing At All” (#53, Country #3, 1995), frontwoman for Union Station, winner of 1996 Rolling Stone‘s critic’s choice Best Country Artist, Grammy-winning collaboration album with Led Zeppelin‘s Robert Plant, Raising Sand (#2, 2007)
1971 ● DJ Screw / (Robert Earl Davis, Jr.) → Legendary Houston hip hop DJ who created the now-famous “chopped and screwed” mixing and DJ technique involving slowed down music, died of a prescription codeine overdose on 11/12/2000, age 29
1974 ● Andrew Tierney → With his younger brother, Mike, and two schoolmates, co-founder, vocals and keyboards in Motown-inspired Aussie teen-pop boyband Human Nature (“Everytime You Cry,” AUS #3, 1997), currently in residence on the Las Vegas Strip performing in a Motown-themed show
1978 ● Elliott Yamin → One hit wonder R&B/pop-neo-soul singer, “Wait For You” (#13, 2007), fifth season American Idol finalist
1980 ● Mike Kennerty → Rhythm guitar and backing vocals for alt rock/power pop The All-American Rejects, “Swing, Swing” (Modern Rock #8, 2003)

July 21
1922 ● Kay Starr / (Katherine LaVerne Starks) → Successful 30s and 40s Big Band jazz-pop singer who migrated to country-pop and early rock ‘n’ roll during the 50s with even more success, including two #1 hits, “Wheel Of Fortune” (#1, 1952) and “The Rock And Roll Waltz” (#1, UK #1, 1956), continued to record and perform to a loyal following well after her style went out and well into her 80s, died from complications of Alzheimer’s disease on 11/3/2016, age 94
1942 ● Kim Vincent Fowley → Singer-songwriter, producer, disc jockey and band manager, best known for putting together the all-girl punk/hard rock The Runaways (“Cherry Bomb,” 1976), died from bladder cancer on 1/15/2015, age 72
1943 ● Henry McCullough → Irish guitarist in early folk-rock Sweeney’s Men and with Joe Cocker in the 60s, best known for his work with Paul McCartney‘s Wings in the 70s and his guitar solo on “My Love” (#1, 1973), continued to record and perform into the 10s, suffered a heart attack in 2012 and died four years later on 7/14/2016, age 72
1945 ● Mike Wilsh / (Michael Wilshaw) → Bass, keyboards and backing vocals 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
1945 ● Rosie Hamlin / (Rosalie Hamlin) → 15-year old lead singer and principal songwriter in one hit wonder light pop/rock Rosie And The Originals, “Angel Baby” (#5, 1960), left the industry for motherhood in the early 60s but had her song covered by John Lennon and included on his posthumous 1986 album Menlove Avenue, died from “ill health” on 3/30/2017, age 71
1946 ● Bean Whitwam / (Barry “Bean” Whitwam) → Drummer for British Invasion pop-rock Herman’s Hermits, “Mrs. Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter” (#1. 1965)
1948 ● Cat Stevens / (Stephen Demitri Georgiou, now Yusuf Islam) → Singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Peace Train” (#7, 1971) and 10 other US Top 40 hits, converted to Muslim in 1977
1953 ● Eric Bazilian → Co-founder, guitarist and vocals for 80s MTV pop-rock The Hooters, “And We Danced” (#21, Mainstream Rock #3, 1985)
1955 ● Taco / (Taco Ockerse) → Pop-rock one hit wonder singer, “Puttin’ On The Ritz” (#4, 1983)
1955 ● Howie Epstein → Bassist for Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, “Free Fallin'” (#7, 1989), died of a drug overdose on 2/23/2003, age 47
1961 ● Jim Martin / (James Blanco Martin) → Guitarist for influential metal/funk/hip hop/punk fusion band Faith No More, “Epic” (#9, 1990)
1962 ● Lee Aaron / (Karen Lynn Greening) → Award-winning Canadian pop, rock, jazz and singer/songwriter and guitarist with Broken Social Scene, “1 2 3 4” (UK #4, 2007), solo
1969 ● Emerson Hart → Founder, guitar and vocals for Grammy-nominated alt/roots rock Tonic, “If You Could Only See” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1997)
1974 ● Terry Caldwell → Vocalist and rapper for Brit teen dance-pop/hip hop boy band East 17, “Stay Another Day” (UK #1, 1994), plus over 15 other UK Top 40 hits
1981 ● Blake Lewis → Beatboxer and American Idol runner-up, “How Many Words” (Dance/Club #8, 2008)

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This Week’s Birthdays (July 7 – 14)

Happy Birthday this week to:

July 08
1908 ● Louis Jordan → Premier jazz and early R&B saxophonist, bandleader and songwriter, the “King of the Jukebox” and the “Father of Rhythm and Blues,” had an influential run of 18 R&B #1 and nine cross-over-to-pop Top 10 hits between 1949 and ’59, including “G.I. Jive” (#1, R&B #1, 1944), died from a heart attack on 2/4/1975, age 66
1914 ● Billy Eckstine / (William Clarence Eckstine) → Swing bandleader and smooth baritone balladeer, formed the first be bop band in 1944, eventually featuring such future jazz luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Charlie Parker and others, duet with Sarah Vaughan, “Passing Strangers” (#82, 1957), suffered a heart attack and died two months later on 3/8/1993, age 78
1924 ● Johnnie Johnson → Legendary blues and rock ‘n’ roll piano player, sideman to Chuck Berry for over 25 years and co-arranger of many of Berry‘s hits, including “Johnny B. Goode” (#8, R&B #2, 1958), left the band in 1973 and drove a bus in St. Louis before returning to the music business in 1987 to work with Eric Clapton, Keith Richards, Bob Weir‘s Ratdog and others, continued to record and perform until his death from a heart attack on 4/18/2005, age 80
1930 ● Earl Van Dyke → Principal keyboardist in Motown Records‘ house band The Funk Brothers, which provided nearly all instrumentation behind every Motownn hit, died of prostate cancer on 9/18/1992, age 62
1930 ● Jerry Vale / (Genaro Louis Vitaliano) → High-tenor pop crooner with 31 Adult Contemporary Top 40 hits, including “Have You Looked Into Your Heart” (AC #1, 1964), died in his sleep from natural causes on 5/18/2014, age 83
1933 ● Stan Cornyn → The “King of Liner Notes,” long-time Warner Bros. music executive overseeing Frank Sinatra and multiple 50s popular artists, penned or edited the liner notes for countless albums, authored Exploding: The Highs, Hits, Hype, Heroes, and Hustlers of the Warner Music Group (1980), produced several albums and mentored different rock acts, died from cancer on 5/11/2015, age 81
1935 ● Steve Lawrence / (Sidney Liebowitz) → Solo and with wife and singing partner Eydie Gormé in the pop/easy listening/adult contemporary duo Steve And Eydie, “Go Away Little Girl” (#1, 1963), Broadway, TV and film actor
1944 ● Jaimoe Johanson / (Johnny Lee Johnson) → Session and tour drummer with Otis Redding and Sam & Dave, then founding member, drums and percussion for Southern rock The Allman Brothers Band, “Ramblin’ Man” (#2, 1973)
1944 ● Bill Deal → Frontman for blue-eyed soul/surf rock septet The Rhondels, an early “big band rock” outfit in the vein of Blood, Sweat & Tears but with only three significant singles, all in 1969, “What Kind Of Fool Do You Think I Am” (#23), “I’ve Been Hurt” (#35) and “May I” (#39), left the industry in 1983 after the murder of his band manager following a concert in Richmond, VA, died on 12/10/2003, age 59
1945 ● Ricky Wolf → Vocals for one hit wonder psychedelic pop The Flower Pot Men, “Let’s Go To San Francisco” (UK #4, 1967)
1956 ● Russell Christian → Saxophone and vocals for blue-eyed soul sibling trio The Christians, “When Fingers Point” (Dance/Club #29, 1988)
1961 ● Andy Fletcher → Bass, synthesizer, co-founder, constant member and business manager of electro-dance/synth-pop Depeche Mode, “Enjoy The Silence” (#8, 1990)
1961 ● Graham Jones → Guitar and vocals for New Wave funk-pop Haircut 100, “Love Plus One” (#37, 1982)
1961 ● Toby Keith / (Toby Keith Covel) → Neo-traditionalist country singer/songwriter, post-9/11 politically charged “Courtesy Of The Red, White And Blue (The Angry American)” (#25, Country #1, 2002) and 34 other Country Top 10 hits
1962 ● Joan Osborne → Roots and contemporary rock singer/songwriter and solo artist, “One Of Us” (#4, 1995), toured with Dixie Chicks, Grateful Dead and Motown house band The Funk Brothers and appeared in the film Standing In The Shadows Of Motown
1970 ● Beck Hansen / (Bek David Campbell) → Multi-instrumentalist singer and crossover songwriter fusing rock, hip hop, blues and soul, “Loser” (#10, 1994) and later “Where It’s At” (#64, 1996) from the critically-acclaimed and Grammy-winning album Odelay
1971 ● Neil Mavers → Drums for Brit jangle pop The La’s, “There She Goes” (#49, UK #13, 1991)
1985 ● Jamie Cook → Guitar and vocals for Brit teen alt/indie rock Arctic Monkeys, “I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor” (Modern Rock #7, 2005)

July 09
1916 ● Norman Pickering / (Norman Charles Pickering) → Engineer, musician and inventor credited with improving the “pickup” that translates the information in a record groove into an analog signal for sound reproduction via the Pickering cartridge, died from cancer on 11/18/2015, age 99
1925 ● Alan Dale / (Aldo Sigismondi) → Immensely popular traditional pop and light rock ‘n’ roll singer in the 50s, “Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White” (#14, 1955), hosted his own TV and radio shows, died on 4/20/2002, age 76
1927 ● Ed Ames / (Ed Urick) → Vocals for sibling quartet Ames Brothers, “Rag Mop” (#1, 1950), starred in The Ames Brothers Show on TV, then as “Mingo” in the Daniel Boone TV series, then solo singer career, “My Cup Runneth Over” (#8, 1967)
1929 ● Lee Hazelwood → Country-pop singer, songwriter and producer, collaborated with rockabilly guitarist Duane Eddy on a number of hits, including “Rebel Rouser” (#6, 1958), wrote and produced the Nancy Sinatra hit, “These Boots Are Made for Walkin'” (#1, 1966), died of renal cancer on 8/4/2007, age 78
1940 ● John Salvato → Vocals for Italian-American doo wop The Duprees, “You Belong To Me” (#7, 1962)
1941 ● Donald McPherson → Founding member and lead singer for R&B/soul The Main Ingredient, “I’m So Proud” (#49, R&B #13, 1971), died of leukemia on 7/4/1971 before the band’s breakout hit, “Everybody Plays The Fool” (#3, 1972), age 30
1946 ● Joe Micelli → Drums and percussion for blue-eyed soul one hit wonder John Fred & His Playboy Band, “Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)” (#1, 1968)
1946 ● Bon Scott / (Ronald Belford Scott) → Scotland-born original frontman and lead vocals for Aussie power chord hard rock AC/DC, “Highway To Hell” (#47, 1979), drank himself to death on 2/19/1980, age 33
1947 ● Mitch Mitchell / (John Graham Mitchell) → Child actor and accomplished teenage jazz drummer turned rock stickman for pop-rock Georgie Fame (“The Ballad Of Bonnie & Clyde,” #7, CAN #1, UK #1, 1967) and then psych-rock Jimi Hendrix Experience (“Purple Haze,” US #65, UK #3, 1967), later in ITV’s Ready Steady Go! house band and various one-off projects, drummed in Hendrix Experience tribute tours and died in his sleep in a hotel room following one such show on 11/12/2008, age 61
1950 ● Gwen Guthrie → R&B/soul singer and songwriter, solo artist, “Ain’t Nothin’ Goin’ On But The Rent” (#42, Dance/Club #1, 1986), backing vocals for Aretha Franklin, Billy Joel, Madonna, Stevie Wonder and others, died of uterine cancer on 2/3/1999, age 48
1952 ● Carlos Peron → Founding member and multi-instrumentalist for Swiss electronic dance-pop Yello, “Oh Yeah” (#51, 1987), then solo
1953 ● Kate Garner → Vocals for quirky Brit New Wave synth-pop Haysi Fantayzee, “John Wayne Is Big Leggy” (UK #11, 1982)
1954 ● Debbie 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
1959 ● Jim Kerr → Vocals for Scottish New Wave pop-rock Simple Minds, “(Don’t You) Forget About Me” ($1, 1985)
1959 ● Marc Almond → Vocals for New Wave synth-pop duo Soft Cell, “Tainted Love” (#8, 1982), formed euro-disco Marc & The Mambas in 1983 and solo since 1984
1964 ● Courtney Love / (Courtney Michelle Harrison) → Guitar and vocals for post-punk Babes In Toyland, formed and fronted grunge rock Hole in 1989, “Celebrity Skin” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1998), solo, married Kurt Cobain from Nirvana on 2/24/1992, film actress in Sid And Nancy (1986) and The People Vs. Larry Flynt (1999)
1965 ● Frankie Bello / (Frank Joseph Bello) → Bassist for speed/thrash metal Anthrax, “Only” (Mainstream #26, 1993)
1965 ● Tom Hingley → Vocals for Brit psych-alt rock Inspiral Carpets, “Two Worlds Collide” (Modern Rock #8, 1992)
1967 ● Dickon Hinchcliffe → Guitar and violin for Brit folk-pop-soul Tindersticks, “Bathtime” (UK #38, 1997)
1967 ● Owen Paul → Guitar for Welsh indie-alt-rock Catatonia, “Mulder And Scully” (, 1998)
1971 ● Kelvin Grant → Vocals for ska/reggae band Musical Youth, “Pass The Dutchie” (#10, 1982)
1975 ● Isaac Brock / (Isaac Christopher Brock) → Founding member, singer, guitarist and lyricist for indie rock Modest Mouse, “Float On” (Top 40 #32, 2004) and the album We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank (#1, 2007), also fronts a side project, indie rock Ugly Casanova
1975 ● Jack White / (John Anthony Gillis) → With wife Meg White, guitar and vocals in garage rock revival duo The White Stripes, 2007 Grammy-winning song “Icky Thump” (#26, 2007), side projects with power pop The Raconteurs and indie rock Dead Weather, produced country legend Loretta Lynn‘s comeback album Van Lear Rose (2004)
1976 ● Dan Estrin → Guitarist for post-grunge indie pop-rock Hoobastank, “The Reason” (#2, 2004)
1986 ● Kiely Alexis Williams → Vocals in R&B/dance-teen-pop 3LW (aka 3 Little Women), “No More (Baby I’ma Do Right)” (#23, 2001)

July 10
1900 ● Mitchell Parish → Pop music lyricist and collaborator with Duke Ellington and numerous other top composers for multiple hits from the 20s to 50s, known best for penning the lyrics to Hoagy Carmichael‘s music for the American pop classic “Stardust,” one of the most recorded songs in history (originally “Star Dust,” 1927), died from natural causes on 3/31/1993, age 92
1933 ● Jumpin’ Gene Simmons / (Morris Eugene Simmons) → One hit wonder rockabilly singer and songwriter with the novelty song “Haunted House” (#11, 1964), Kiss frontman Gene Simmons (born Chiam Witz) took the name as a tribute to the singer, died after a long illness on 8/29/2006, age 73
1936 ● Johnny Griffith → Piano and keyboard session musician, member of The Funk Brothers, Motown Record‘s house band which provided nearly all instrumentation behind every Motown hit, died from a heart attack on 11/10/2002, age 66
1939 ● Mavis Staples → Lead vocalist for four-sister R&B/soul-gospel act The Staple Singers, “I’ll Take You There” (#1, 1972)
1941 ● Ian Whitcomb → One hit wonder Brit singer/songwriter, “You Turn Me On” (#8, 1965), author of pre-rock history book After The Ball
1942 ● Ronnie James Dio / (Ronald James Padavona)) → Heavy metal vocalist and songwriter, frontman for Rainbow, “Since You’ve Been Gone” (#57, 1979) and “Stone Cold” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1982), Black Sabbath (1979-82), “Turn Up The Night” (Mainstream Rock #24, 1982), founded heavy metal quintet Dio, “Rainbow In The Dark” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1983), died from stomach cancer on 5/16/2010, age 67
1943 ● Jerry Miller → Guitarist for 60s San Francisco folk-roots-psych rock Moby Grape, “Omaha” (#88, 1967)
1944 ● Beaky Dymond / (John Dymond) → Rhythm guitar for Brit 60s pop-rock two hit wonder quintet Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich, “The Legend Of Xanadu” (UK #1, 1968), left in 1989 but rejoined the band on the oldies circuit in 2013
1947 ● Arlo Guthrie → Folk/rock singer/songwriter with three notable songs, the comic-monologue-song “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree” (1967), “Coming Into Los Angeles” from the Woodstock festival and movie, and “The City Of New Orleans” (#18, 1972), son of folk legend Woody Guthrie
1948 ● John Whitehead → With Gene McFadden, one-half the soul music songwriting duo for Philadelphia International Records, co-wrote “Back Stabbers” for The O’Jays (#3, R&B #1, 1972) and other hits, including the disco smash “Ain’t’ No Stopping Us Now” (#13, R&B #1, 1979) for their own album McFadden & Whitehead (1979), died from in an unsolved but apparently mistaken-identity murder outside his home on 5/11/2004, age 55
1949 ● Dave Smalley → Founding member and lead 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)
1950 ● Greg Kihn → Pop/rock singer, songwriter and bandleader, Greg Kihn Band, “Jeopardy” (#2, 1983)
1953 ● Rik Emmett / (Richard Gordon Emmett) → Lead guitar and vocals for Canadian power rock trio Triumph (“All The Way,” Mainstream Rock #2, 1983), left the band in 1988 to pursue a moderately successful solo career, rejoined in 2008, contributes to Guitar Player magazine and teaches music business at Humber College in Toronto
1954 ● Neil Tennant → Vocals for synth-pop dance Pet Shop Boys, “West End Girls” (#1, 1986)
1958 ● Béla Anton Leoš Fleck → Innovative jazz-bluegrass (“blu-bop”) banjo player, first with New Grass Revival, “Callin’ Baton Rouge” (Country #37, 1989) then as bandleader for Grammy-winning progressive folk-bluegrass Béla Fleck And The Flecktones, “The Sinister Minister” (Best Pop Instrumental, 1997), session work and tours with Asleep At The Wheel, Dave Matthews Band, Phish and others
1959 ● Sandy West / (Sandra Sue Pesavento) → Drummer, singer, songwriter and founding member of teenage all-girl hard rock group The Runaways, “Cherry Bomb” (1976), died from cancer on 10/21/2006, age 47
1960 ● Martyn P. Casey → Keyboards for alt rock Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds, “Where The Wild Roses Grow” (Australia #2, UK #11, 1995)
1962 ● Play Martin / (Christopher Martin) → With Christopher “Kid” Reid, one half of the positive-attitude hip hop musical duo Kid ‘N Play, “Ain’t Gonna Hurt Nobody” (#51, Rap #1, 1991), the duo branched into acting with film appearances and their own short-lived TV program
1964 ● Graham Lambert → Guitarist for Brit psych-alt rock Inspiral Carpets, “Two Worlds Collide” (Modern Rock #8, 1992)
1965 ● Peter DiStefano → Guitarist for alt rock/post-punk Jane’s Addiction, “Been Caught Stealing” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1990), then co-founded hard art-rock Porno For Pyros, “Pets” (Mainstream Rock #25, 1993), solo
1970 ● Gary LeVox → Vocals for country-pop Rascal Flatts, “Here Come Goodbye” (#11, Country #1, 2009)
1970 ● Jason Orange → Vocals for teen pop quintet Take That, “Back For Good” (#7, UK #1, 1995) and seven other UK #1 hits including “Patience” (UK #1, 2006)
1974 ● Imelda May / (Imelda Clabby Higham) → Irish-born jazz-pop and neo-burlesque singer and guitarist, “Mayhem” (Ireland #24, 2010), plus sessions and backing vocals for Jeff Beck, Elvis Costello, Elton John and others
1976 ● Elijah Blue Allman → Guitarist, vocalist and songwriting for industrial/nu metal Deadsy, “The Elements” (1997), also worked with Orgy, Sugar Ray, Korn and others, son of Cher and Gregg Allman, currently a contemporary artist in L.A.
1980 ● Jessica Simpson → Tabloid-fodder film and reality TV actress, 90s dance-pop and 00s contemporary country-pop singer, “Irresistible” (#15, 2001), featured on MTV’s Newlyweds show with her husband and 98 Degrees member Nick Lachey

July 11
1929 ● Danny Flores → Rock ‘n’ roll saxophonist and songwriter, wrote the Latin-flavored instrumental classic “Tequila” (#1, R&B #1, 1958) for one hit wonder The Champs, left the band in the early 60s and recorded sporadically until his death from pneumonia on 9/19/2006, age 77
1931 ● Tab Hunter / (Arthur Kelm Gelien) → Actor in more than 40 movies and one hit wonder teen idol singer, “Young Love” (#1, 1957)
1931 ● Thurston Harris → One hit wonder rock ‘n’ roll singer “Little Bitty Pretty One” (#6, R&B #2, 1957), the song also charted with versions by Frankie Lymon and The Jackson 5, died from a heart attack on 4/14/1990, age 58
1932 ● Billy Davis / (Roquel Billy Davis) → Detroit R&B singer in an early version of The Four Tops and songwriter with several hits recorded by others, including “Lonely Teardrops” by Jackie Wilson (#7, R&B #1, 1959), produced “Rescue Me” for Fontella Bass (#4, R&B #1, 1965) among other hits, turned to advertising and produced the jingles “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony),” “”Things Go Better With Coke” and other jingles for Coca-Cola, died of natural causes on 9/2/2004, age 72
1938 ● Terry Garthwaite → With collaborator Toni Brown, co-frontwoman, guitar and vocals in folk-rock Joy Of Cooking, “Brownsville” (#66, 1971), solo
1946 ● John Lawton → Vocals for German prog rock and early heavy metal cult band Lucifer’s Friend, joined Brit prog rock Uriah Heep in 1976 as lead singer but returned to Lucifer’s Friend and other bands starting in 1980
1947 ● Jeff Hanna → Guitar and vocals for country-folk-bluegrass-rock The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, “Mr. Bojangles” (#9, 1971)
1947 ● John Holt / (Winston Holt) → Jamaican singer and prolific songwriter with ska and rocksteady vocal quartet The Paragons, wrote “The Tide Is High” (1969), which became a US and UK #1 for Blondie in 1980, died from colon cancer on 10/19/2014, age 67
1950 ● Bonnie Pointer / (Patricia Eva Pointer) → Vocals for R&B/soul-pop-disco-dance sister act The Pointer Sisters, “Slow Hand” (#2, 1981)
1953 ● Benjamin DeFranco → Vocals for teen bubblegum-pop sibling act The DeFranco Family, “Heartbeat-It’s A Lovebeat” (#3, 1973)
1953 ● Peter Brown → Electronic, disco, funk and dance-pop singer, songwriter and producer with seven charting hits between 1977 and 1982, including disco-funk “Dance With Me” (#88, R&B #5, 1977), co-wrote “Material Girl” for Madonna (#2, 1985), left the industry in the late 80s due to hearing loss
1957 ● Peter Murphy → Vocals for seminal goth-rock Bauhaus, “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” (1979), co-founded alt goth Dali’s Car, then solo, “Cuts You Up” (Mainstream Rock #10, 1990)
1959 ● Richie Sambora / (Richard Stephen Sambora) → Guitarist for pop-metal superstars Bon Jovi, “Living On A Prayer” (#1, 1987)
1959 ● Suzanne Vega → Folk-pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Luka” (#3, 1987)
1961 ● Adrian York → Piano for New Wave swing/pop Roman Holliday, “Don’t Try To Stop It” (#68, UK #14, 1983)
1965 ● Scott Shriner → Bass and vocals for post-grunge alt pop-rock Weezer, “Beverly Hills” (#10, 2005)
1966 ● Melanie Susan Appleby → Singer and actress, with older sister Kim in R&B/dance-pop duo Mel & Kim, “Respectable” (Dance/Club #1, 1986), died from pneumonia during cancer treatments on 6/18/1990, age 23
1969 ● Al Sobrante / (John Kiffmeyer) → Drummer for California punk rock Sweet Children, left the band in 1990 during its transition to post-grunge alt rock/punk revival Green Day, “Boulevard Of Broken Dreams” (#2, 2004)
1975 ● Lil’ Kim / (Kimberly Denise Jones) → Hip hop actress, model and rapper, member of rap group Junior M.A.F.I.A., “Player’s Anthem” (#13, Rap #2, 1995), solo, “Not Tonight” (#6, Rap #2, 1997)
1975 ● Rick McMurray → Founding member, drummer and backing vocals for Irish neo-punk/pop-rock Ash, “Goldfinger” (UK #5, 1996)
1975 ● Samer El Nahhal → Bassist for Finnish heavy metal monster-masked Lordi, winners of 2006 Eurovision Song Contest with “Hard Rock Hallelujah”
1978 ● Kathleen Edwards → Critically-acclaimed Canadian-born light country and roots rock singer and songwriter, “The Cheapest Key” (2008), toured with Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones

July 12
1895 ● Oscar Hammerstein II → Stage, film and TV music lyricist/librettist with over 800 titles, many of which are included in the Great American Songbook, collaborator with Richard Rogers on some of the best-known songs in popular music, died from stomach cancer on 8/23/1960, age 65
1928 ● Barbara Russell Cowsill → Matriarch and vocals for family pop band The Cowsills, “The Rain, The Park And Other Things” (#2, 1967) and theme song from Broadway musical Hair, (#2, 1969), inspiration for the TV show The Partridge Family, died from emphysema on 1/31/1985, age 56
1939 ● Kenny Dino / (Kenneth J. Diono) → One hit wonder pop singer, “Your Ma Said You Cried In Your Sleep Last Night” (#24, 1961), died from a heart attack while driving on Interstate 95 in Florida on 12/10/2009, age 70
1942 ● Swamp Dogg / (Jerry Williams, Jr.) → Self-proclaimed “musical genius” rock & soul songwriter, producer, soul artist, “Mama’s Baby, Daddy’s Maybe” (R&B #33, 1970)
1943 ● Christine McVie → Vocals and songwriter for Chicken Shack, then huge pop-rock Fleetwood Mac, “Go Your Own Way” (#10, 1977), solo
1946 ● Jeff Christie → Frontman, lead vocals, bassist and chief songwriter for one hit wonder Brit light pop-rock Christie, “Yellow River” (#23, UK #1, 1970), continued to tour on the oldies circuit with various lineups through the 10s
1946 ● Peter Pye → Rhythm guitarist for one hit wonder English beat/pop-rock The Honeycombs, “Have I The Right?” (#5, 1964)
1947 ● Wilko Johnson / (John Wilkinson) → Founding member and first lead guitar for Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, “Milk And Alcohol” (UK #9, 1979), then founding member of blues-rock Solid Senders
1948 ● Walter Egan → One hit wonder singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Magnet And Steel” (#8, 1978), now a high school teacher
1949 ● Malcolm Jones → Bassist for one hit wonder pop-rock Blues Image, “Ride Captain Ride” (#4, 1970), then Scottish Celtic folk-rock Runrig, “An Ubhal As Airde (The Highest Apple)” (UK #18, 1995)
1950 ● Eric “The Fox” Carr / (Paul Caravello) → Drummer for campy hard/glam-rock Kiss, “Detroit Rock City” (#7, 1976), died from cancer on 11/24/1991, age 41
1952 ● Liz Mitchell → West Indian vocalist for R&B/disco Euro-dance Boney M, “Rivers Of Babylon” (#30, UK #1, 1978)
1952 ● Philip Taylor Kramer → Bass guitar for Iron Butterfly, “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” (#30, 1970), presumed a suicide when his body and wrecked car were discovered in a Malibu canyon four years after he disappeared on 2/12/1995, age 42
1953 ● Billy Alessi / (William Alessi) → With identical twin brother Bobby, vocals in one hit wonder pop-rock duo Alessi Brothers, “Oh, Lori” (UK #8, 1977)
1953 ● Bobby Alessi / (Robert Alessi) → With identical twin brother Billy, vocals in one hit wonder pop-rock duo Alessi Brothers, “Oh, Lori” (UK #8, 1977)
1956 ● Sandi Patty / (Sandra Faye Patty) → Often referred to as “The Voice”, Grammy-winning contemporary Christian music (CCM) and new age singer and pianist
1959 ● Ray Gillen → Journeyman rock vocalist for hard rock Black Sabbath, all-star project Phenomena II, blues-rock Badlands, “Dreams In The Dark” (Mainstream Rock #39, 1989), Tariff, and Sun Red Sun, died from AIDS on 12/1/1993, age 34
1962 ● Dan Murphy → Guitarist for garage rock superstar group Soul Asylum, “Runaway Train” (#5, 1993)
1964 ● Tim Gane → Guitar and keyboards for experimental/electronic pop-rock Stereolab, “Ping Pong” (UK #45, 1994)
1967 ● John Petrucci → Virtuoso metal/”shredder” guitarist, songwriter and occasional singer, founding member and producer for progressive metal Dream Theater, “Pull Me Under” (Mainstream Rock #10, 1992), included in GuitarOne magazine’s Top 10 greatest guitar shredders of all time
1972 ● Brett A. Reed → Original drummer in punk rock revival Rancid, “Time Bomb” (Modern Rock #8, 1995), left in 2010 to concentrate on side project psychobilly Devils Brigade
1976 ● Tracie Spencer → Teen pop singer, “In This House” (#3, 1990) and “It’s All About You (Not About Me)” (#18, 1999)
1984 ● Gareth Gates → Brit teen pop singer, TV’s Pop Idol runner up in 2002, “Unchained Melody” (#1, 2002)

July 13
1915 ● Hucklebuck Williams / (Paul Williams) → Saxophonist, composer and 40s bandleader with the first big R&B hit, “The Hucklebuck” (R&B #1, 1949) among eight other R&B Top 20 singles, became a member of the Atlantic Records house band and music director of James Brown‘s backing band in the 60s, opened a music booking business in the late 60s, died of natural causes on 9/14/2002, age 87
1923 ● Norma Zimmer → The last and best-known “Champagne Lady” from the Lawrence Welk Show and a Christian music singer on radio and TV and in various groups from the 50s through the 70s, including with Billy Graham, died on 5/10/2011, age 87
1935 ● Pete Escovedo → Mexican-American jazz and fusion percussionist with Latin-rock Santana, “Black Magic Woman” (#4, 1970), solo and leader of Latin big band Azteca
1942 ● Jay Uzzell → With brothers James and Moses and cousin George Wooten, vocals for R&B/doo wop The Corsairs, “Smoky Places” (#12, 1962)
1942 ● Roger McGuinn / (James Joseph McGuinn III) → Twelve-string Rickenbacker jingle-jangle guitarist, songwriter, singer and founding member of seminal folk-country-rock The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man” (#1, 1965), McGuinn-Clark & Hillman, “Don’t You Write Her Off” (#33, 1979), solo
1942 ● Stephen Bladd → Drummer for boogie-blues-rock ‘n roll bar band J. Geils Band, “Centerfold” (#1, 1982)
1942 ● Tom King / (Thomas R. King) → Founder, frontman, songwriter and lead guitarist for garage/horn rock The Outsiders, “Time Won’t Let Me” (#5, 1966), producer and manager, died from heart failure on 4/23/2011, age 68
1946 ● Cheech Marin / (Richard Anthony Marin) → Mexican-American comedian, TV actor (Nash Bridges, 1996-2001), Disney voice artist and one half the stoner comedy team Cheech & Chong (album Big Bambu, #2, 1972), released two albums of bilingual children’s music, My Name Is Cheech, The School Bus Driver (1992) and Coast To Coast (1997)
1954 ● Thelma Louise Mandrell → Country-pop bassist and singer, played in sister Barbara Mandrell‘s band, The D-Rights, then solo, “Save Me” (Country #5, 1985)
1955 ● Mark “The Animal” Mendoza / (Mark Glickman) → Bassist for proto-punk The Dictators, joined heavy metal Twisted Sister in 1978, “We’re Not Gonna Take It” (#21, 1983)
1958 ● Danny Gayol / (Rafael Bernardo Gayol) → Drummer for roots rock and adult pop BoDeans, “Closer To Free” (#16, 1993)
1961 ● Lawrence Donegan → Bassist for Scottish jangle-pop-rock The Bluebells, “Young At Heart” (UK #1, 1983), then Brit pop-rock Lloyd Cole & The Commotions, “Lost Weekend” (UK #17, 1985), author and golf journalist
1966 ● Gerald Levert → Vocals and frontman for R&B/smooth soul trio LeVert, “Casanova” (#5, R&B #1, 1987), son of O’Jays vocalist Eddie Levert, died of a heart attack on 11/10/2006, age 40
1969 ● Barney Greenway / (Mark Greenway) → Extreme metal singer for punk/grindcore Napalm Death, Extreme Noise Terror and Benediction
1974 ● Deborah Cox → Canadian R&B singer/songwriter, “Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here” (#2, 1998)

July 14
1912 ● Woody Guthrie / (Woodrow Wilson Guthrie) → Legendary and highly influential American music giant, folk singer and songwriter, “This Land Is Your Land” (1940) and hundreds of others, died from complications of Huntington’s disease on 10/3/1967, age 55
1926 ● Lowman Pauling → Guitarist, singer and songwriter for gospel, jump blues and doo wop fusion quintet The “5” Royales, “Tears Of Joy” (R&B #9, 1957), co-wrote “Dedicated To The One I Love” (#81, 1961) which was covered by The Shirelles (#3, 1961) and The Mamas & The Papas (#2, 1967), also wrote or co-wrote hits for James Brown, Ray Charles and others, died while at work as a janitor in a Brooklyn, NY synagogue on 12/26/1973, age 47
1932 ● Del Reeves / (Franklin Delano Reeves) → Country music singer and songwriter with 25 Country Top 40 hits in the 60s and 80s, including “Girl On The Billboard” (Country #1, 1965), moved into music and artist management and discovered Billy Ray Cyrus in the 90s, continued to perform until just prior to his death from emphysema on New Year’s Day 2007, age 74
1938 ● Bob Scholl → Lead vocals for R&B/doo wop one hit wonder quintet The Mello-Kings, “Tonite, Tonite” (#77, 1957), died in a boating accident on 8/27/1975, age 37
1939 ● Vince Taylor / (Brian Maurice Holden) → Early and flamboyant Brit rock ‘n’ roll singer with The Playboys and solo, career cut short by drug and alcohol abuse and erratic behavior, served as the inspiration for David Bowie‘s Ziggy Stardust character and the Golden Earring song “Just Like Vince Taylor,” died from cancer on 8/28/1991, age 52
1945 ● Jim Gordon → Top session drummer in the 60s and 70s, co-wrote “Layla” (#10, 1972) with Eric Clapton, worked with The Byrds, The Everly Brothers, The Monkees, Steely Dan, Frank Zappa and others, diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic serving a prison sentence since 1984 for murdering his mother
1948 ● Tommy Mottola → CEO of Sony Music Entertainment and Columbia Records, mentored Hall & Oates, John (Cougar) Mellencamp, Diana Ross, Jessica Simpson and Jennifer Lopez, among others, ex-husband of dance-pop diva Mariah Carey
1952 ● Chris Cross / (Christopher St. John) → Bass and synthesizer for New Wave electro-synth-pop pioneers Ultravox, “Vienna” (UK #2, 1980) and 15 other UK Top 40 singles
1952 ● Bob Casale, Jr. → Guitarist and keyboardist for quirky 80s pop-rock Devo, “Whip It” (#14, 1980), left in the mid-80s for a career in music and TV sound engineering and production, worked with Police guitarist ‘Andy Summers and others, rejoined Devo bandmates in Mutato Muzika, died of heart failure on 2/17/2014, age 61
1965 ● Igor Khoroshev → Keyboardist replacing Rick Wakeman in archetypal, pioneer progressive rock band Yes, “Roundabout” (#13, 1971), solo
1966 ● Ellen Reid → Keyboards and backing vocals for Canadian alt pop-rock Crash Test Dummies, “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” (#4, 1993)
1966 ● Tanya Donelly → Grammy-nominated singer, songwriter and guitarist, co-founder of alt rock Throwing Muses, “Dizzy” (Modern Rock #8, 1989), guitar and vocals for alt rock The Breeders, “Cannonball” (#44, 1993) and alt pop-rock Belly, “Feed The Tree” (#1, Modern Rock, 1993), solo
1971 ● Nick McCabe → Lead guitar for neo-psych-pop The Verve, “Bittersweet Symphony” (#12, 1998), session work, now founder of The Black Ships
1975 ● Taboo / (Jaime Luis Gómez) → Rapper and singer with Black Eyed Peas, “Don’t Phunk With My Heart” (#3, 2005)
1975 ● Tiny Cottle-Harris / (Tameka Cottle-Harris) → Vocals for female R&B/dance-pop quartet Xscape, “Understanding” (#8, 1993)
1987 ● Dan Reynolds → Frontman for Las Vegas-based indie pop-rock Imagine Dragons (“Radioactive,” #3, Rock #1, 2012)

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This Week’s Birthdays (June 17 – 23)

Happy Birthday this week to:

June 17
1902 ● Sammy Fain / (Samuel E. Feinberg) → Broadway show songwriter and film score composer, penned the music for endearing popular songs, including “I Can Dream, Can’t I?” (1937) and “Tender Is The Night” (1962), won Oscars for “Secret Love” (1953) and “Love Is A Many Splendored Thing” (1955), scored film soundtracks for Alice In Wonderland (1951), Peter Pan (1953), April Love (1957) and the Broadway shows Hellzapoppin’ (1938), Christine (1960) and others, died from a heart attack on 12/6/1989, age 87
1910 ● Red Foley / (Clyde Julian Foley) → Pioneer country-pop crossover star in the post-WWII era with 56 Country Top 10 hits and 13 Pop Top 40 hits from 1944 to 1956, including “Chattanooga Shoe Shine Boy” (#1, Country #1, 1950), continued to record and perform until his death from a heart attack after a show in Indiana on 9/19/1968, age 58
1916 ● Terry Gilkyson / (Hamilton H. Gilkyson III) → Folk-pop singer and songwriter, wrote “The Cry Of The Wild Goose” (#1, 1950) for Frankie Lane and songs used by other artists, sang with The Weavers on “On Top Of Old Smokey” (#2, 1953), formed influential but unheralded folk trio The Easy Riders in the mid-50s and co-wrote their big hit, the oft-covered “Marianne” (#3, 1957), wrote songs that were used in Disney films, died from complications of an aneurysm on 10/15/1999 , age 83
1918 ● Billy Garland / (William Jefferson Garland) → Blues guitarist, singer and songwriter in the 40s, “Got Nothing On Me” (1945), died in a car accident on 3/16/1960, age 41
1930 ● Cliff Gallup → Guitarist for rockabilly Gene Vincent And His Blue Caps, “Be-Bop-A-Lula” (#7, 1956), died of a heart attack on 10/9/1988, age 58
1937 ● Edward Farran → With his identical twin brother, Fred and brothers Tom and Scott Herrick, singer in pop cover quartet The Arbors (“The Letter,” #20, 1969), coached rock and pop singers with voice lessons and wrote and sang commercial jingles for three decades thereafter, died of kidney failure on 1/2/2003, age 65
1937 ● Fred Farran → With his identical twin brother, Ed and brothers Tom and Scott Herrick, singer in pop cover quartet The Arbors (“The Letter,” #20, 1969), stayed as a group after their fame ran out and wrote and recorded commercial jingles for three decades thereafter, died of pneumonia on 8/29/2011, age 74
1939 ● Dave Alldred → Drummer in 50s Tex-Mex rockabilly The Rhythm Orchids with Buddy Knox, “Party Doll” (#1, 1957), co-wrote “Click Clack” (#28, 1958) and performed the song and others in the pop band Dickey Doo & The Don’ts, continued to perform in the 90s
1940 ● Chuck Rainey → Jazz and R&B/soul-funk bassist for King Curtis‘ band, “Memphis Soul Stew” (#33, 1967), session work with Aretha Franklin and many others
1942 ● Norman Kuhlke → Drummer for British Invasion pop-rock The Swinging Blue Jeans, “Hippy Hippy Shake” (#21, 1964)
1943 ● Barry Manilow / (Barry Alan Pincus) → Highly successful adult contemporary/MOR singer, “I Write The Songs” (#1, 1976), songwriter, producer, conductor and stage performer
1944 ● Chris Spedding / (Peter Robinson) → Brit rock and jazz guitarist with several solo albums and a lone single, “Motorbikin'” (UK Top 20, 1975), but mainly known for sessions and touring with Harry Nilsson, John Cale, Roxy Music, Elton John and others, Greedy Bastards
1947 ● Gregg Rolie → Keyboardist and founding member of Latin-rock Santana, “Black Magic Woman” (#4, 1970) , then original lead singing for arena rock Journey, “Who’s Crying Now” (#4, 1981), currently frontman for the Gregg Rolie Band
1947 ● Paul Young → Singer and percussionist for Brit soft pop-rock Sad Café, “Every Day Hurts” (UK #3, 1979), then pop-rock Mike + The Mechanics, “All I Need Is A Miracle” (#5, 1986), died of a heart attack on 7/15/2000, age 53
1949 ● Russell Smith → Founding member, lead singer, guitarist and somgwriter for Grammy-winning Southern rock Amazing Rhythm Aces (“Third Rate Romance,” #14, Country #11, CAN #1), left the group in 1985 for a country music career as a solo artist (“I Wonder What She’s Doing Tonight,” Country #37, 1989) and songwriter with four County #1 hits, including “Look Heart, No Hands” (Country #1, 1993) for Randy Travis
1951 ● Lenny LeBlanc → Guitarist, session musician, songwriter and one half of the light pop-rock duo LeBlanc & Carr (“Falling,” #13, 1977), as part of the Muscle Shoals Studios (Alabama) house band recorded with numerous top artists, including The Supremes, Ricky Scaggs, Roy Orbison, Amy Grant and others, switched to Christian music in the 80s and continues to record and produce music
1957 ● Philip Chevron → Guitarist for Irish folk-punk-rock The Pogues, “Tuesday Morning” (Rock #11, 1993)
1958 ● Jello Biafra / (Eric Boucher) → Lead singer and songwriter for controversial hard core punk rock Dead Kennedys, “Too Drunk To F**k” (UK #31, 1980), leading figure of the Green Party in the US
1960 ● Michael Monroe / (Matti Fagerholm) → Vocals for Finnish glam-punk-metal Hanoi Rocks, “Up Around The Bend” (1984)
1965 ● Richard Hynd → Drummer for Scottish blues-rock Texas, “In My Heart” (Alt Rock #14, 1991)
1969 ● Kevin Thornton → Vocals in a cappella hip hop harmony group Color Me Badd, “I Wanna Sex You Up” (#2, 1991)
1972 ● Rikrok / (Ricardo George Ducent) → London-born, Jamaican descent reggae singer and songwriter, “It Wasn’t Me” (#1, 2000)
1981 ● Ben Kweiler → Former teenage frontman for 90s post-grunge Radish, then solo, “Wasted & Ready” (Modern Rock #29, 2002) and two acclaimed Indie Top 10 albums, Ben Kweiler (#1, 2006 and Changing Horses (#8, 2009)
1983 ● Lee Ryan → Vocals in Brit R&B/soul-dance boy band Blue, “Too Close” (UK #1, 2001)
1987 ● Kendrick Lamar Duckworth → Grammy-winning hip hop solo artist (“Swimming Pools (Drank),” #17, Rap #1, 2012) and member of West Coast rap collaborative supergroup Black Hippy
1989 ● Simone Battle / (Simone Sherise Battle) → Actress and singer, The X Factor finalist in 2011 and member of pop girl group G.R.L. (“Ugly Heart,” #107, UK #11, 2014), committed suicide by hanging on 9/5/2014, age 25

June 18
1913 ● Sammy Cahn / (Samuel Cohen) → LA-based musician, songwriter and Tin Pan Alley-style lyricist for romantic films and Broadway shows, wrote or co-wrote dozens of popular songs, including the enduring and oft-covered “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!” (Vaughan Moore, #1, 1946), collaborated on multiple hits by Frank Sinatra, including “All The Way” (#1, 1957), died from congestive heart failure on 1/15/1993, age 79
1938 ● Sugarcane Harris / (Don Francis Bowman Harris) → Guitarist, pianist and half the 50s rock ‘n’ roll duo Don & Dewey, switched to electric violin and did session work for Little Richard, John Mayall, Frank Zappa and others, died from pulmonary disease on 11/30/1999, age 61
1942 ● Paul McCartney → The most successful rock composer of all time, with John Lennon co-wrote 21 US #1 and has over 30 US #1 singles as a solo artist and frontman for his band Wings
1942 ● Richard Perry → Highly successful and popular record producer with twelve gold discs, label owner (Planet Records, 1978-83), worked with Captain Beefheart, The Pointer Sisters, Diana Ross, Leo Sayer, Carly Simon, Ringo Starr, Barbra Streisand and others
1942 ● Carl Radle → Bass guitarist for Derek & The Dominos, Eric Clapton band, Delaney & Bonnie, sessions for George Harrison, died of kidney failure on 5/30/1980, age 37
1944 ● Sandy Posey → Session vocalist for Elvis Presley, Percy Sledge (backing vocals on “When A Man Loves A Woman,” #1, 1966) and others, then pop singer, “Born A Woman” (#12, 1966) and three more Top 40 hits in the 60s, turned to countrypolitan pop in the 70s and scored six Country Top 40 hits, continued to record and perform into the 00s
1944 ● Rick Griffin / (Richard Alden Griffin) → Cartoonist, graphic artist and pioneering designer of psychedelic posters and album covers, including work for the Grateful Dead, the Fillmore West, Jimi Hendrix and others, frequent contributor to Zap Comix magazine, died in a motorcycle accident on 8/18/1991, age 47
1952 ● Ricky Gazda → Trumpets for New Jersey rock ‘n roll bar band Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes (“Talk To Me,” 1978) and later as a member of The Miami Horns, the touring and session recording horn section that backed Bruce Springsteen, Little Steven, <, Sheryl Crow and many others
1953 ● Jerome Smith → Rhythm guitar for R&B/soul-disco-funk kings KC & The Sunshine Band, “That’s The Way (I Like It)” (#1, 1975) and five other #1 hits, died in a construction site accident on 7/28/2000, age 47
1961 ● Alison Moyet → Bluesy-voiced Brit pop-rock singer in synth-pop duo Yazoo, “Nobody’s Diary” (Dance/Club #1, 1983), solo, “Invisible” (#31, 1985)
1963 ● Dizzy Reed / (Darren Arthur Reed) → Keyboards for hard rock Guns N’ Roses, “Sweet Child O’ Mine” (#1, 1988)
1969 ● Sice / (Simon Rowbottom) → Guitarist and vocals for 90s Brit guitar-pop The Boo Radleys, “Barney (…And Me)” (Alt Rock #30, 1994)
1971 ● Nathan Morris → Baritone for R&B/urban soul a cappella Boyz II Men, “End Of The Road” (#1, 1992)
1973 ● Gary Stringer → Vocals for hard-edged Brit pop Reef, “Place Your Hands” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1997) from the UK #1 album Glow
1973 ● Ray LaMontagne → Folk, folk-rock and folk-blues singer, songwriter and guitarist with five studio LPs, including Gossip In The Grain (#3, 2008), and multiple singles (“Beg, Steal Or Borrow,” AAA #1, 2010)
1975 ● Sikk The Shocker / (Vyshonne King Miller) → Vocals for gangsta rap trio The Real Untouchables (TRU), “I Always Feel Like” (#71, Rap #11, 1997), solo, “It Ain’t My Fault” (#18, R&B #5, Rap #1, 1998)
1976 ● Blake Shelton → Country-pop crossover singer, songwriter and TV show star, “Austin” #18, Country #1, 2001) and 19 other Country #1 hits plus 13 other Pop Top 40 hits, judge of music competition shows Nashville Star, Clash Of The Choirs and The Voice

June 19
1902 ● Guy Lombardo / (Gaetano Alberto Lombardo) → Canadian-American easy listening violinist and bandleader, formed big band The Royal Canadians with three brothers and several other musicians in the 20s and became known for nearly 50 years of New Years Eve radio and then TV broadcasts, moonlighted as a hydroplane speedboat racer, won the Gold Cup and every other trophy in the field, died from a heart attack on 11/5/1977, age 75
1914 ● Lester Flatt → Legendary and musically prodigious bluegrass guitarist, cohort of Earl Scruggs in the Foggy Mountain Boys and in duo Flatt & Scruggs, died of heart failure on 5/11/1979, age 64
1925 ● Charlie Drake / (Charles Edward Spungall) → Brit comedian, children’s songwriter, TV actor and BBC program host, and (in the U.S.) one hit wonder novelty song singer, “My Boomerang Won’t Come Back” (#21, UK #14, 1962), died in his sleep on 12/23/2006, age 81
1936 ● Tommy DeVito → Founding member, guitarist and singer for Top 40 pop vocal quartet The Four Seasons, “Big Girls Don’t Cry” (#1, 1962), left in 1971 and sold his stake in the group to cover gambling and tax debts
1936 ● Shirley Goodman → One half of 50s teen R&B/pop male-female contrasting duet-style Shirley & Lee, “Let The Good Times Roll” (#20, R&B #1, 1956), resurfaced as lead singer for one hit wonder, pre-disco dance-pop Shirley & Company, “Shame Shame Shame” (#12, 1974), died on 7/5/2005, age 69
1939 ● Al Wilson → R&B/smooth soul vocalist, “Show and Tell” (#1, 1973), died of kidney failure on 4/21/2008, age 68
1942 ● Spanky McFarlane / (Elaine McFarlane) → Frontwoman and lead vocals for sunny folk-pop Spanky & Our Gang, “Sunday Will Never Be The Same” (#9, 1967), joined the reformed The Mamas & The Papas in 1982
1944 ● Robin Box → Lead guitar for Brit pre-fab pop White Plains, “My Baby Loves Lovin'” (#13, 1970)
1945 ● Robert Palmer, Jr. / (Robert Franklon Palmer, Jr.) → Musician, journalist, author and rock music critic, played clarinet in 60s jazz-rock The Insect Trust, covered rock music for the New York Times and Rolling Stone magazine in the 70s and 80s, produced blues albums and published books in the 80s and 90s, died from liver disease on 11/20/1997, age 52
1948 ● Nick Drake → Dark-themed, multi-instrumentalist Brit folk-rock singer/songwriter, notable album Pink Moon (1972), committed suicide on 11/25/1974, age 26
1950 ● Ann Wilson → With younger sister Nancy, co-frontwoman for hard AOR rock Heart, “These Dreams” (#1, 1986)
1953 ● Larry Dunn / (Larry Dunn (Lawrence Dunhill)) → Keyboards, synthesizer and musical director for R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975)
1954 ● Lou Pearlman / (Louis Jay Pearlman) → Record producer, band manager and fraudster known first as the manager of 90s boy bands Backstreet Boys (“Quit Playing Games )With My Heart),” #2, UK #2, 1996) and NSYNC (“Bye Bye Bye,” $1, UK #3, 2000), later achieved infamy as the perpetrator of a $300 million Ponzi scheme, tried and convicted in 2008, sentenced to 25 years in prison, where he died from a heart attack on 8/19/2016, age 62
1957 ● Maxi Jazz / (Maxwell Fraser) → Rapper in electronic house-pop club quartet Faithless, “Insomnia” (Dance/Club #1, 1997)
1959 ● Marty DeBarge / (Mark DeBarge) → With his sister and three brothers, vocals in R&B/urban contemporary dance-pop sibling quintet Debarge, “All This Love” (#17, 1983)
1960 ● Dennis Fuller → With Edem Ephraim, one half of Brit/Austrian dance-europop London Boys, “London Nights” (UK #2, 1989), died with Ephraim in a car collision on 1/21/1996, age 36
1962 ● Paula Abdul → Former L. A. Laker cheerleader and rock/pop stage and video dance choreographer turned hugely successful dance-pop diva, “Opposites Attract” (#1, 1989) and five other US #1 hits, producer and judge on the TV show American Idol
1963 ● Simon Wright → Drummer for hard rock AC/DC starting in 1983, left in 1989 to join heavy metal Dio
1964 ● Brian Vander Ark → Frontman, guitar and vocals for alt/indie pop-rock The Verve Pipe, “The Freshmen” (#5, 1997)
1970 ● Brian “Head” Welch / (Brian Welch) → Guitarist for Nu metal Korn, “Here To Stay” (Mainstream #4, 2002), solo
1976 ● Scott Avett / (Scott Yancey Avett) → With brother Seth, frontman and guitarist in progressive folk-rock quartet The Avett Brothers (Ain’t No Man,” AAA #1, Alt Rock #28, 2016), also paints and runs an art gallery in North Carolina
1983 ● Macklemore / (Ben Haggerty) → Rapper and songwriter, both as a solo artist and in collaboration with Ryan Lewis as the duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, the pair had back-to-back debut singles, “Can’t Hold Us” (#1, 2011) and “Thrift Shop” (#1, 2013), and four Grammy Awards in 2014

June 20
1907 ● Jimmy Driftwood / (James Corbitt Morris) → Legendary and prolific country, folk-pop and roots rock songwriter, wrote thousands of songs (of which some 300 were recorded), often with American history themes such as the oft-covered “The Battle Of New Orleans” (Johnny Horton, #1, 1959), died of a heart attack on 7/12/1998, age 91
1920 ● Danny Cedrone / (Donato Joseph Cedrone) → Rock ‘n’ roll guitarist with Bill Haley & His Comets, played lead on all their hits including “Rock Around The Clock” (#1, 1955), died instantly from a broken neck after falling down a staircase on 6/7/1954 at age 34 and never knew his role in the birth of rock ‘n’ roll
1924 ● Chet Atkins / (Chester Burton Atkins) → Eleven-time Grammy-winning country-pop guitarist, songwriter, sessionman, producer and solo artist, “Yakety Axe” (Country #4, 1965), created the smoother “Nashville Sound” blending country and pop, died from a brain tumor on 6/30/2001, age 77
1928 ● Eric Dolphy → avant-garde “free jazz” flute, alto sax and clarinet musician, influenced jazz-rock fusionists, died suddenly from a diabetic coma on 6/29/1964, age 36
1936 ● Billy Guy → Bass singer for R&B/doo wop/soul-pop The Coasters, “Yakety Yak” (#1, 1958), solo comedy album plus producer, died in his sleep of a probable heart attack on 11/5/2002, age 66
1936 ● Mickie Most / (Michael Peter Hayes) → Producer for The Animals, Herman’s Hermits, The Nashville Teens, Lulu and Jeff Beck, formed RAK Records in 1969 and issued hits for Hot Chocolate, Mud and Suzi Quatro, died of cancer on 5/30/2003, age 66
1937 ● Jerry Keller → One hit wonder pop singer/songwriter, “Here Comes Summer” (#14, UK #1, 1959), wrote several minors hit for others and soundtracks, TV commercial jingle vocalist
1942 ● Brian Wilson → Leader, keyboards, bass guitar, lead and backing harmony vocals and chief songwriter for surf-pop-rock The Beach Boys, “Good Vibrations” (#1, 1966), referred by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as “one of the few undisputed geniuses in popular music”
1945 ● Anne Murray → Grammy-winning, Nova Scotia-born country-pop and adult contemporary singer, “You Needed Me” (#1, 1978)
1948 ● Alan Longmuir → Bassist for Scottish teen-pop Bay City Rollers, “Saturday Night” (#1, 1976)
1948 ● Don Airey → Long and varied journeyman career as keyboard sessionman and bandmember for Hammer, Rainbow, Gary Moore, Ozzy Osbourne, Jethro Tull, Colosseum II, Whitesnake, Judas Priest and others, with Deep Purple since 2002
1949 ● Lionel Richie → Saxophone and vocals for R&B/soul-funk The Commodores, “Three Times A Lady” (#1, 1978), then hugely successful R&B-pop/adult contemporary solo career beginning with “Endless Love” (#1, 1981), the first of 13 straight Top 10 hits, five of which were #1
1954 ● Michael Anthony / (Michael Anthony Sobolewski) → Founding member and only bassist for hard rock megastars Van Halen, “Jump” (#1, 1984), co-founded blues-funk-rock supergroup Chickenfoot in 2008, markets a line of hot sauces and related products named Mad Anthony
1958 ● Simon Underwood → Bassist for post-punk Pigbag, “Papa’s Got A Brand New Pigbag” (Dance/Club #56, UK #3, 1981)
1958 ● Kelly Johnson → Founding member, vocals and lead guitar for early all-girl heavy metal group Painted Lady, which became Girlschool, “Hit And Run” (UK #32, 1981), died of spinal cancer on 7/15/2007, age 49
1960 ● Chris Gibson → Percussion and vocals with brothers Patrick and Alex in R&B/disco-salsa The Gibson Brothers, “Cuba” (Dance/Club #9, 1979)
1960 ● John Taylor → Bassist for New Wave pop-rock Duran Duran, “Hungry Like The Wolf” (#3, 1982) and “(Reach Up For The) Sunrise” (Dance/Club #1, 2001), co-founded The Power Station, “Some Like It Hot” (#6, 1985) and mid-90s supergroup Neurotic Outsiders, “Jerk” (Mainstream Rock #31, 1996), plus solo, ” I Do What I Do” (Theme from 9-1/2 Weeks) (#23, 1986)
1967 ● Jerome Fontamillas → Guitars, keyboards and vocals with several industrial and alt rock bands in the 90s, in 2000 joined Grammy-winning alt rock/Christian rock Switchfoot, “Meant To Live” (#18, Modern Rock #5, 2004)
1968 ● Murphy Karges → Bassist for funk-pop-rock Sugar Ray, “Fly” (#1, 1997)
1971 ● Twiggy Ramirez / (Jeordie Osbourne White) → Bassist for industrial-pop-metal/shock rock Marilyn Manson, “The Dope Show” (Mainstream Rock #12, 1998), later Nine Inch Nails touring band, A Perfect Circle and Goon Moon
1972 ● Chino Moreno → Vocals for Grammy-winning alt heavy metal Deftones, “Change (In The House Of Flies)” (Mainstream Rock #9, 2000), ranked #51 in Hit Parader magazine’s Top 100 Metal Vocalists of All Time
1977 ● Amos Lee / (Ryan Anthony Massaro) → School teacher and bartender turned folk, rock and soul singer-songwriter, toured as an opening act for numerous top artists, including Bob Dylan, Norah Jones, Merle Haggard and Van Morrison, his Mission Bell album debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart in 2011
1979 ● Charlotte Hatherly → Founding member, guitar and backing vocals for Irish neo-punk/pop-rock Ash, “Goldfinger” (UK #5, 1996)

June 21
1926 ● Nick Noble / (Nicholas Valkan) → Pop and easy listening singer with several Top 40 hits in the 50s and 60s, including “A Fallen Star” (#22, 1957) and a minor but near-career reviving country-pop crossover hit, “Stay With Me” (AC #38, Country #40, 1978), died on 3/24/2012, age 85
1932 ● Lalo Schifrin → Argentinean-born, Grammy-winning pianist, conductor, composer and arranger of TV and film soundtracks, including “Mission: Impossible” (Adult Contemporary #7, 1968), “Jaws” (Disco #5, 1976) and the theme song to Mannix (1967-1975), also worked with Clint Eastwood to compose the scores to several films in the Dirty Harry series
1932 ● Carl White → Lead vocals and songwriter for 60s R&B/doo wop two hit wonder quartet The Rivingtons, co-wrote their novelty pop classics “Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow” (#48, 1962) and “The Bird’s The Word” (#52, 1963), died from acute tonsillitis on 1/7/1980, age 47
1942 ● O.C. Smith / (Ocie Lee Smith) → Jazz vocalist in Count Basie‘s band, then country-R&B-pop solo singer, “Little Green Apples” (#2, 1968), later became a pastor and church leader, died on 11/23/2001, age 59
1944 ● Philip John Hiseman / (Jon Hiseman) → British jazz-, blues- and progressive rock drummer, recording engineer, producer and prolific music publisher, often in collaboration with his wife, saxophonist and composer Barbara Thompson, replaced Ginger Baker (who joined with Jack Bruce and Eric Clapton in Cream) in 1966 in John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers, left to form prog rock Colosseum, (album Valentyne Suite, UK #15, 1969) and Tempest in 1971, formed Colosseum II in 1976, after 1979 worked with various jazz-rock ensembles until reuniting the original Colosseum in 1994 for two decades, continued to record and perform up to his suffering complications from brain tumor surgery and dying several weeks later on 6/12/2018, age 73
1944 ● Miquel Vicens Danus → Bassist for Spanish rock ‘n roll band Los Bravos, “Black Is Black” (US #4, 1966), the first US Top 10 hit by a Spanish band
1944 ● Ray Davies → Founding member, frontman, guitar, vocals and songwriter for British Invasion pop-rock The Kinks, “Lola” (#9, 1970) and “Come Dancing” (#6, 1983)
1946 ● Brenda Holloway → Second-tier Motown Records R&B/soul singer, “Every Little Bit Hurts” (#13, 1964), left the label in the late 60s for “religious reasons” and to raise a family, released a one-off gospel album in 1980, returned to recording and performing on the revival circuit and continues as of 2015
1947 ● Joey Molland / (Joseph Charles Molland) → Guitar, vocals and songwriter for Brit power pop Badfinger, “Come And Get It” (#7, 1970), has performed in various incarnations of the band for four decades
1949 ● Greg Munford → Lead vocals for 60s psych-pop-rock Strawberry Alarm Clock, “Incense And Peppermints” (#1, 1967)
1950 ● Joey Kramer / (Joseph Michael Kramer) → Long-time drummer for Grammy-winning, venerable hard rockers Aerosmith, “Dream On” (#6, 1976), “Angel” (#3, 1988), “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” (#1, 1998), “Baby, Please Don’t Go” (Mainstream Rock #7, 2004)
1951 ● Alan Silson → Lead guitar and vocals for pop-rock Smokie, “Living Next Door To Alice” (#25, UK #3, 1977)
1951 ● Nils Lofgren → Rock guitarist, pianist, songwriter and vocals, joined Neil Young‘s Crazy Horse in 1968, from 1971 to 1974 recorded four albums with his own band, Grin, solo, “Valentine”, (Mainstream Rock #37, 1991), joined Bruce Springsteen‘s E Street Band in 1984 and is a two-time member with Ringo Starr’s All-Starr Band
1957 ● Mark Brzezicki → Drummer for Scottish art-folk-rock Big Country, “In A Big Country” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1983), also stints with The Cult, Ultravox and Procol Harum, plus session work for The Pretenders, Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey and others
1959 ● Kathy Mattea → Grammy-winning bluegrass and country-pop singer/songwriter, “Goin’ Gone” (Country #1, 1987) and 13 other Country Top 10 singles
1959 ● Marcella Detroit / (Marcella Levy) → Back-up singer for Eric Clapton, then vocalist and songwriter in R&B/synth-pop duo Shakespear’s Sister, “Stay” (#4, 1992), sessions, solo
1967 ● Tim Simenon → Hip hop producer, co-produced for Neneh Cherry and Seal, composer and frontman for one man electronic/sampladelic Bomb The Bass, “Beat Dis” (Dance/Club #1, 1988)
1968 ● Sonique / (Sonia Clarke) → Brit dance-pop diva and DJ, first with dance-pop acid house S’Express, “Theme From S’Express” (Dance/Club #1, 1988), then solo, “Feels So Good” (#8, Dance/Club #1, 2000)
1969 ● Pat Sansone → Multi-instrumentalist for alt country-rock Wilco, “Outtasite (Outta Mind)” (Mainstream Rock #22, 1997)
1975 ● Justin Cary → Bassist for Christian pop-rock Sixpence None The Richer, “Kiss Me” (#2, 1998)
1976 ● Michael Aaron Einziger → Guitarist for alt-metal Incubus, “Drive” (#9, 2001)
1981 ● Brandon Flowers → Vocals and keyboards for pop-alt hard rock The Killers, “Mr. Brightside” (#10, 2005)
1985 ● Lana Del Ray / (Elizabeth Grant) → Model, guitarist and trip hop/house singer, “Summertime Sadness” (#6, 2012)

June 22
1913 ● Dotty Todd / (Doris Dabb) → With her husband in one hit wonder pop singing duo Art & Dotty Todd, “Chanson D’Amour” (“Love Song”) (#6, 1958), continued to perform on radio and in Las Vegas cabarets until retiring in 1980, died from natural causes on 10/10/2007, age 87
1927 ● Remo Delmo Belli → Creator of the less expensive, more durable synthetic drumhead cover in the late 50s, which launched thousands of 60s garage bands and fueled the rock ‘n’ roll boom, died from pneumonia on 4/25/2016, age 88
1930 ● Roy Drusky → Countrypolitan music singer and songwriter with twelve Country Top 10 hits in the 60s and 70s but only one crossover single, “Three Hearts In A Triangle” (#35, Country #2, 1961), died from lung cancer on 9/23/2004, age 74
1936 ● Kris Kristofferson → Grammy-winning country singer/songwriter, wrote “Me & Bobby McGee” (Janis Joplin, #1, 1971), solo artist, “Why Me” (#16, Country #1, 1973), film actor in many top films and roles, including A Star Is Born (1976) opposite Barbra Streisand, husband of folkie Rita Coolidge from 1973 to 1980
1937 ● Chris Blackwell → Highly-influential Brit music executive and producer, founder of fiercely independent Island Records, which forged the early careers of Traffic, Bob Marley, Grace Jones, U2 and countless other rock acts, founded Mango Records and Palm Records, currently oversees Jamaican resort properties and philanthropic organizations
1942 ● Deodato / (Eumir Deodato de Almeida) → Brazilian multi-instrumentalist producer and arranger known for mixing rock, R&B/funk and heavy Latin influences in a crossover orchestral jazz sound, scored several instrumental pop and disco dance-pop hits in the 70s and 80s, including a rendition of “Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001)” (#2, 1973), also arranged and produced hundreds of albums for multiple artists over three decades through the 00s
1944 ● Peter Asher → With Gordon Waller, one half of the acclaimed British Invasion pop-rock duo Peter & Gordon, “A World Without Love” (#1, 1964) and nine other Top 30 hits in the mid-60s, manager, record producer and one-time head of Apple Records
1944 ● Bill Thompson → Manager for psychedelic rock Jefferson Airplane (“Somebody To Love,” #5, 1967) through successful but turbulent times from 1968 to 1972, stayed with the band members for various solo projects, including folk-rock Hot Tuna (LP Burgers, 1972) and reformation as electric folk/pop-rock Jefferson Starship (“Miracles,” #3, 1975) and spinoff pop-rock Starship (“We Built This City,” #1, 1985), died of a heart attack on 1/12/2015, age 70
1947 ● Howard Kaylan / (Howard Kaplan) → With long-time collaborator Mark Vollman, co-founder and vocals for pop-rock The Turtles, “Happy Together” (#1, 1967), then Frank Zappa-led satirical rock group The Mothers Of Invention, “Brown Shoes Don’t Make It” (1967), formed Flo & Eddie with Vollman, continues with him in TV, film, radio and reconstituted Turtles projects
1948 ● Todd Rundgren → Guitarist, singer/songwriter, bandleader for pop-rock The Nazz, “Hello It’s Me” (#71, 1969) and Utopia, “Set Me Free” (#27, 1980), solo, “I Saw The Light” (#16, 1972), member of The New Cars, “Not Tonight” (2006) and producer of albums by Meat Loaf, The Band, Badfinger and Grand Funk Railroad, among others
1949 ● Alan Osmond → Vocals for family-oriented light pop-rock The Osmonds, ten US Top 40 singles including “One Bad Apple” (#1, 1971)
1953 ● Cyndi Lauper → Nasally-voiced, rag-tag early MTV star pop-rock girl solo singer, “Time After Time” (#1, 1983)
1956 ● Derek Forbes → Bassist for Scottish New Wave pop-rock Simple Minds, “(Don’t You) Forget About Me” ($1, 1985)
1956 ● Green Gartside / (Paul Julian Strohmeyer) → Wales-born founding member, frontman, songwriter, vocals and only constant member of left-wing post-punk then pop-punk Scritti Politti, “Perfect Way” (#11, Dance/Club #6, 1985)
1957 ● Gary Beers → Bassist for Aussie New Wave dance-groove-pop INXS, “Need You Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1958 ● Ruby Turner → Jamaican-born R&B/soul singer, backing vocals for R&B/reggae UB40 and Culture Club, then solo, “It’s Gonna Be Alright” (R&B #1, Dance/Club #5, 1989)
1959 ● Alan Anton / (Alan Alizojvodic) → Bassist for Canadian alt-art-country-blues-rock Cowboy Junkies, “Sweet Jane” (Modern Rock #5, 1989)
1961 ● Jimmy Somerville → Lead vocals and songwriter for early-out gay synth-pop Bronski Beat, “Smalltown Boy” (#48, Dance/Pop #1, 1984), then vocals for outwardly gay dance-pop The Communards, “Don’t Leave Me This Way” (#40, Dance/Club #1, 1986)
1962 ● Stephen Vaughan → Bassist for alt rock/punk-revival trio PJ Harvey, “Sheela-Na-Gig” (Alt Rock #9, 1991)
1964 ● Bobby Gillespie → Drummer for Scottish alt-pop-rock Jesus And Mary Chain, “Sometimes Always” (Modern Rock #4, 1994), then founding member, guitar and vocals for jangle pop/dance fusion Primal Scream, “Movin’ On Up” (Modern Rock #2, 1992)
1964 ● Dicky Barrett / (Richard Michael Barrett) → Frontman and lead vocals for ska punk The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, “The Impression That I Get” (Top 40 #17, Modern Rock #1, 1997), radio DJ, TV voice-over artist and announcer for the Jimmy Kimmel Show
1964 ● Mike Edwards → Vocals for techno-electronic pop-dance Jesus Jones, “Right Here, Right Now” (#2, 1991)
1965 ● Tommy Cunningham → Drummer for Scottish pop-rock Wet Wet Wet, “Love Is All Around” (#41, UK #1, 1994)
1970 ● Steven Page → Guitar and vocals for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, “One Week” (#1, 1998)
1973 ● Chris Traynor → Guitarist and co-founder of post-hardcore Orange 9mm, then joined alt heavy metal Helmet, “Exactly What You Wanted” (Mainstream Rock #19, 1997), worked with alt-rock Bush, “The People That We love” (Mainstream Rock #10, 2001), studio soundtrack sessions for Blue Man Group, touring and sessions with Blur, Rival Schools, Katy Perry and others
1976 ● Sally Polihronas → Singer in pre-fab Aussie all-girl pop vocal quintet Bardot, “Poison” (Aus. #1, 2000)
1981 ● Chris Urbanowicz → Guitarist for 00s punk revival/indie rock Editors, “Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors” (UK #7, 2007)

June 23
1907 ● Eddie Pola / (Sydney Edward Pollacsek) → Radio and TV program producer, actor and songwriter best known for co-writing several enduring pop tunes with George Wyle, including “It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year” (1963), retired from the industry and taught elementary school music, died on 111/3/1995, age 88
1929 ● June Carter Cash / (Valerie June Carter) → Singer, songwriter, actress and country music matriarch, The Carter Family, solo, “Jackson” (Country #2, 1967), duets with her husband Johnny, the “Man in Black”, died on 5/15/2003, age 73
1937 ● Niki Sullivan → Original member, rhythm guitar and backing vocals for Buddy Holly‘s backing group, The Crickets, co-wrote and/or sang on many of Holly‘s hit songs before leaving the band in 1957, died of a heart attack on 4/6/2004, age 66
1938 ● Alan Vega / (Boruch Alan Bermowitz) → Singer and guitarist with Martin Rev in highly influential, confrontational, proto-punk/minimalist duo Suicide, their eponymous debut album (1977) is considered a landmark of electronic music and a precursor to post-punk industrial rock, died in his sleep on 7/16/2016, age 78
1940 ● Stuart Sutcliffe / (Stuart Fergusson Victor Sutcliffe) → First Beatles bassist for 18 months in 1960-61, left the band when the others returned to England in July 1961 and remained in Hamburg, Germany where he died from a brain hemorrhage on 4/10/1962, age 21
1940 ● Adam Faith / (Terence Nelhams-Wright) → Brit teen-idol pop singer, “What Do You Want” (UK #1, 1959) and 10 other UK Top 10 hits, successful TV, film and stage actor with multiple roles, later became a largely unsuccessful financial advisor, died of a heart attack on 3/8/2003
1941 ● Robert Hunter → Folk-bluegrass musician, singer, songwriter and poet best known as the Grateful Dead‘s lyricist, solo folk-country-rock artist
1944 ● Rosetta Hightower / (Rosetta Jeanette Hightower) → Lead vocals for mixed gender R&B doo-wop quartet The Orlons, “The Wah-Watusi” (#2, R&B #5, 1962), left the group in the late 60s for session work in England with Joe Cocker, John Lennon and others, died from a brain hemorrhage on 8/2/2014, age 70
1945 ● Paul Goddard → Founding member and bassist for Southern rock Atlanta Rhythm Section (“Imaginary Lover, #7, 1978), died from cancer on 4/29/2014, age 68
1955 ● Glenn Danzig / (Glenn Allen Anzalone) → Multi-instrumentalist singer, songwriter and founder/bandleader for hardcore “horror” punk The Misfits, “Dig Up Her Bones” (1997), left in 1983 to form heavy/death metal Samhain and later blues-metal Danzig, now runs an adult-entertainment comics magazine
1956 ● Randall Darius Jackson → Session bass guitarist, bandmember for Carlos Santana and Jerry Garcia, record producer, label executive, solo artist and now judge on popular TV show American Idol
1957 ● Lee John / (John Leslie McGregor) → Vocals for R&B/electro-dance-soul Imagination, “Just An Illusion” (Dance/Club #15, 1982)
1960 ● Brendan O’Brien → Former Atlanta Rhythm Section guitarist and sessionman turned highly regarded and successful record producer and music company executive, worked with Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Red Hot Chili Peppers and others, won a Grammy Award for Bruce Springsteen‘s The Rising (2002) and produced thirteen other Billboard #1 albums
1962 ● Richard Coles → Multi-instrumentalist for outwardly gay dance-pop The Communards, “Don’t Leave Me This Way” (#40, Dance/Club #1, 1986), now an ordained priest and BBC radio host
1962 ● Steve Shelley → Drummer for alt rock/avant-garde Sonic Youth, “100%” (Modern Rock #4, 1992)
1965 ● Bonehead Arthurs / (Paul Arthurs) → Guitar for Grammy-nominated Brit pop Oasis, “Wonderwall” (#8, 1996), the band had 22 consecutive UK Top 10 hits, left the band in 1999
1966 ● James MacPherson → Drummer for alt rock The Breeders, “Cannonball” (#44, 1993)
1966 ● Mark Chadwick → Guitar and vocals for alt folk-Celtic rock The Levellers, “Just The One” (UK #12, 1995)
1975 ● KT Tunstall / (Kate Victoria Tunstall) → Scottish singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Black Horse & The Cherry Tree” (#20, Adult Top 40 #9, 2006)
1977 ● Jason Mraz → Grammy-winning contemporary pop-rock singer/songwriter, “I’m Yours” (#6, 2008)
1980 ● Jessica Taylor → Singer for teen dance-pop Liberty X, “Just A Little” (UK #1, 2002)
1981 ● Antony Costa → Vocals in Brit R&B/soul-dance boy band Blue, “Too Close” (UK #1, 2001)
1984 ● Duffy / (Aimée Ann Duffy) → Grammy-winning Welsh singer-songwriter, “Mercy” (Adult Top 40 #9, 2008)

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This Week’s Birthdays (May 20 – 26)

Happy Birthday this week to:

May 20
1901 ● Jimmy Blythe / (James Louis Blythe) → Chicago R&B/blues and boogie woogie piano player credited with over 200 piano roll tunes and for recording one of the first full-length boogie-woogie songs (“Chicago Stomp,” 1924), died from meningitis on 6/14/1931, age 30
1925 ● Vic Ames / (Victor Urick) → Chicago R&B/blues and boogie woogie piano player credited with over 200 piano roll tunes and for recording one of the first full-length boogie-woogie songs (“Chicago Stomp,” 1924), died from meningitis on 6/14/1931, age 30
1940 ● Shorty Long / (Frederick Earl Long) → Overlooked Motown R&B/pop singer, “Here Comes The Judge” (#8, R&B #4, 1968), producer and song craftsman, drowned in a Detroit River boating accident on 6/29/1969
1942 ● Jill Jackson → Vocals in pop duo Paul & Paula, “Hey Paula” (#1, 1963)
1944 ● Joe Cocker / (John Robert Cocker) → Gravelly-voiced, blue-eyed soul pub-rock/blues-pop-rock vocalist and hard partying rock star, “A Little Help From My Friends” (#68, UK #1, 1968), “The Letter” (#7, 1970) and duet with Jennifer Warnes, “Up Where We Belong” (#1, 1982), died from lung cancer on 12/22/14, age 70
1946 ● Cher / (Cherilyn Sarkisian LaPierre) → Singer and TV and film actress, first with husband Sonny Bono in pop-rock duo Sonny & Cher, “I Got You Babe” (#1, 1965) and later as a five-decade solo act with 33 charting singles (22 in the Top 4), including “Believe” (#1, 1999)
1950 ● Stephen Alex Broughton → Drummer for Brit blues-rock then prog rock Edgar Broughton Band, “Apache Dropout” (UK #33, 1970)
1950 ● Andy Johns → Brit sound engineer and record producer, worked on albums by Free (Highway, 1970), The Rolling Stones (Exile On Main Street, 1972), Television (Marquee Moon, 1977) and many others, died from complications of a stomach ulcer on 4/7/2013, age 62
1952 ● Warren Cann → Drummer for New Wave electro-synth-pop pioneers Ultravox, “Vienna” (UK #2, 1980) and 15 other UK Top 40 singles
1954 ● Guy Hoffman / (Guy Edward Hoffman) → Drummer for roots rock The BoDeans, “Closer To Free” (#16, 1993)
1954 ● Jimmy Henderson → Guitarist for Southern raunch-rock Black Oak Arkansas, “Jim Dandy To The Rescue” (Top 30, 1973)
1955 ● Steve George → Keyboardist for 80s atmospheric pop-rock quartet Mr. Mister, “Kyrie” (#1, 1985)
1958 ● Jane Wiedlin → Guitar, songwriting and vocals for top New Wave pop-rock all-girl group The Go-Go’s, “We Got The Beat (#2, 1982) and solo, “Rush Hour” (#9, 1988)
1959 ● Susan Cowsill → Sub-teen vocalist for family pop band The Cowsills, “The Rain, The Park And Other Things” (#2, 1967) and theme song from Broadway musical Hair, (#2, 1969), inspiration for the TV show The Partridge Family, backing vocalist for various artists in the 80s, then formed alt country-rock supergroup Continental Drifters in 1991, solo
1961 ● Dan Wilson → Guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter for post-grunge alt rock Semisonic, wrote “Closing Time” (Modern Rock #4, 1998), producer
1961 ● Nick Heyward → Guitar and vocals for New Wave funk-pop Haircut 100, “Love Plus One” (#37, 1982)
1963 ● Nasher / (Brian Nash) → Backing vocals and guitarist for Brit New Wave pop/rock Frankie Goes To Hollywood, “Relax” (#10, 1984)
1964 ● Patti Russo → Singer/songwriter and actress best known as the female lead vocalist with Meat Loaf‘s touring band, Neverland Express
1966 ● Tom Gorman → Guitarist for alt pop-rock Belly, “Feed The Tree” (#1, Modern Rock, 1993)
1967 ● Kit Clark → With brother Gary Clark, founding member and vocals for Scottish pop-rock Danny Wilson, “Mary’s Prayer” (#23, Adult Contemporary #6, 1987)
1972 ● Busta Rhymes / (Trevor Smith, Jr.) → Grammy-nominated, idiosyncratic speed rapper, first with Leaders Of The New School, “What’s Next” (Rap #1, 1993), then solo, “Woo-Hah!! Got You All In Check ” (#8, Rap #1, 1996)
1981 ● Sean Conlon → Vocals for Brit dance-pop boy band 5ive (aka Five), “When The Lights Go Out” (#10, 1998)
1984 ● Naturi Naughton → Vocals for R&B/dance-teen-pop 3LW (aka 3 Little Women), “No More (Baby I’ma Do Right)” (#23, 2001)

May 21
1904 ● Fats Waller / (Thomas Wright Waller) → Jazz and ragtime pianist, co-wrote “Ain’t Misbehavin'” (1929), the oft-covered classic now included in the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress, died 12/15/1943 from pneumonia, age 39
1926 ● Al Grossman / (Albert Bernard Grossman) → Chicago folk club owner and later promoter and manager for Bob Dylan (1962-70), Peter, Paul & Mary, The Band, Paul Butterfield, Janis Joplin and others, built Bearsville Studios near Woodstock, NY and founded Bearsville Records, died of a heart attack while flying to London on the Concorde to sign unknown British rock singer on 1/25/1986, age 59
1928 ● Tom Donahue → Rock Hall of Fame-inducted pioneering “free format” FM rock DJ on KSAN (San Francisco) and other stations, night club owner, concert producer/promoter, record label executive, died of a heart attack on 4/28/1975
1940 ● Tony Sheridan / (Anthony McGinnity) → Britbeat pop-rock bandleader, frontman for The Beat Brothers and collaborator with The Beatles in Hamburg in the early 60s, recorded several tracks with the Fab Four, including “My Bonnie” in June 1961, which reached #5 in West Germany, retired from the music business in the mid-70s, died following heart surgery on 2/16/2013, age 72
1941 ● Ronald Isley → Vocals for six-decade, multi-generation R&B/soul family group The Isley Brothers, “That Lady, Pts. 1-2” (#6, 1973)
1943 ● Hilton Valentine → Guitarist for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964)
1943 ● John Dalton → Bass guitarist for British Invasion pop-rock The Kinks, “Lola” (#9, 1970), replaced Pete Quaiffe in 1969, left the band in 1976 and periodically appears with the Kast Off Kinks
1943 ● Vincent Crane / (Vincent Cheesman) → Keyboards and songwriter for Brit psych-rock The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, “Fire” (#12, 1987), left with bandmate Carl Palmer to form prog/art rock Atomic Rooster, “The Devil’s Answer” (UK #4, 1971), died from an overdose of painkillers on 2/14/1989, age 45
1944 ● Marcie Blaine / (Marcia Blank) → One hit wonder pop singer, “Bobby’s Girl” (#3, 1962)
1947 ● Bill Champlin → Singer, songwriter, guitarist, keyboardist and frontman for psych-rock Sons Of Champlin, joined pop-rock/horn band Chicago, “You’re The Inspiration” (#3, 1984) in 1981 and has played and toured with the band since, also solo and side projects
1948 ● Leo Sayer / (Gerard Hugh Sayer) → Grammy-winning blue-eyed R&B/pop-disco singer, “You Make Me Feel Like Dancing” (#1, 1977)
1954 ● Marc Ribot → Multi-genre guitarist and composer, session work for dozens of artists from Norah Jones to Elvis Costello to Tom Waits, member of New York City avant-garde The Lounge Lizards
1955 ● Stan Lynch → Drummer for Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, “Free Fallin'” (#7, 1989)
1963 ● Kevin Shields → Founding member and guitarist for art-prog-rock, “shoe-gazing” pioneers My Bloody Valentine, “Only Shallow” (Modern Rock #27, 1992)
1963 ● Tim Lever → Keyboards for New Wave dance-pop Hi-NRG group Dead Or Alive, “You Spin Me ‘Round (Like A Record)” (#11, 1985)
1964 ● Martin Blunt → Bass for “Madchester” alt rock The Charlatans UK, “The Only One I Know” (Mainstream Rock #37, 1991)
1972 ● The Notorious B.I.G. / (Christopher Wallace) → Street hustler turned East Coast hip hop star, “Mo Money Mo Problems” (#1, 1997), murdered in a drive-by shooting in L.A. on 3/9/1997, age 24
1975 ● Lee Gaze → Lead guitarist for Welsh alt hard rock Lostprophets, “Last Train Home” (Mainstream Rock #10, 2004)
1978 ● Adam Wade Gontier → Lead singer and guitarist in Canadian punk/metal Three Days Grace, “Just Like You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1985 ● Mutya Buena → Singer in Brit multi-racial pop girl group Sugababes, “Hole In The Head” (Dance/Club #1, 2004), quit the group in 2005 for solo, “Real Girl” (UK #2, 2006)

May 22
1924 ● Charles Aznavour / (Shahnour Aznavourian) → The “French Frank Sinatra”, world-known French-Armenian music hall singer, songwriter, actor and diplomat, “She” (UK #1, 1974)
1930 ● Jimmy Keyes → Founding member and first tenor vocals for one hit wonder R&B/doo wop The Chords, one of the earliest black groups to cross over to the pop charts with “Sh-Boom” (#9, R&B #3, 1954), died on 7/22/1995, age 65
1937 ● Kenny Ball → Brit traditional jazz trumpeter and bandleader, Kenny Ball & His Jazzman, “Midnight In Moscow” (#2, 1962)
1941 ● Bruce Rowlands → Drummer in Joe Cocker‘s backing group The Grease Band, then joined renowned Brit folk-rock Fairport Convention, “Si Tu Dos Partir” (UK #21, 1969)
1941 ● Jackie Jackson / (Jackie Landry Jackson) → Vocals for early R&B/pop girl group trio The Chantels, “Maybe” (#15, R&B #2, 1958), one of the definitive songs of the genre, became a stenographer in the Bronx (NY) court system following her music career, died from breast cancer on 12/23/1997, age 56
1942 ● Calvin Simon → Vocals for R&B/doo wop The Parliaments, “(I Wanna) Testify” (#20, R&B #3, 1967), then R&B/soul-funk (“P-Funk”) giants Parliament-Funkadelic, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#31, 1978)
1949 ● Chris Butler → Lead guitarist and chief songwriter for New Wave pop-rock The Waitresses, “I Know What Boys Like” (Mainstream Rock #23, 1982), solo and record producer/executive
1950 ● Bernie Taupin → Lyricist and renowned songwriting partner of Elton John with dozens of collaborative hits, also co-wrote Jefferson Starship‘s “We Built This City” (#1, 1985), Heart‘s “These Dreams” ( #1, 1986), and songs for Rod Stewart, Cher, The Motels, John Waite, Alice Cooper and multiple others
1954 ● Jerry Dammers → Founding member and keyboard play for ska revival/punk rock The Specials, “Ghost Town” (UK #1, 1981), producer and co-founder of 2 Tone Records
1955 ● Iva Davies → Welsh singer/songwriter, guitarist, producer and film score composer, frontman for Aussie New Wave synth-pop/pub rock Icehouse, “Electric Blue” (#7, 1987)
1955 ● Mary Black → Irish folk and contemporary pop-rock-blues singer and songwriter, “Columbus” (1989)
1959 ● Morrissey / (Steven Patrick Morrissey) → Vocalist and lyricist, frontman for definitive Brit indie rock The Smiths, “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” (UK #10, 1984), solo, “Suedehead” (UK #5, 1988) and over 15 other UK Top 40 singles
1962 ● Jesse Valenzuela → Vocals and guitar for power-pop Gin Blossoms, “Found Out About You” (Modern Rock #1, 1994), solo
1966 ● Johnny Gill → R&B/hip hop “new jack swing” singer, “Super Love” (#29, 1983), joined New Edition, “If It Isn’t Love” (#7, 1988), returned to solo recording, “Rub You The Right Way” (#3, 1990)
1967 ● Dan Roberts → Bassist for Canadian alt pop-rock Crash Test Dummies, “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” (#4, 1993)
1979 ● Russell Pritchard → Bass guitarist for Brit indie rock The Zutons, “Valerie” (UK #9, 2006)
1981 ● Su-Elise Nash → Vocals in “UK urban” R&B/dance-pop trio Mis-Teeq, “One Night Stand” (Dance/Club #4, 2004), now a performing arts school director

May 23
1910 ● Artie Shaw / (Arthur Jacob Arshawsky) → Big Band-era bandleader, composer and one of the most-renowned clarinetists of all time, his version of Cole Porter‘s “Begin The Beguine” (#3, 1938) is one of the most popular and enduring songs of the Swing Era, retired from touring in the early 50s, returned briefly in the mid-80s and died of natural causes on 12/30/2004, age 94
1918 ● Bumps Blackwell / (Robert Blackwell) → Early rock ‘n’ roll and soul music producer, Specialty Records executive, managed Little Richard and co-wrote several hits, including “Long Tall Sally” (#6, R&B #1, 1956), guided multiple other R&B/soul acts including Ray Charles, Sam Cooke and Sly & The Family Stone, died of pneumonia on 1/27/1985, age 66
1921 ● Humphrey Lyttleton → Jazz bandleader, trumpeter, composer and BBC Radio 4 host, I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue, died of an aortic aneurysm on 4/25/2008, age 86
1928 ● Rosemary Clooney → Immensely popular 40s-50s adult pop singer, “Mangos” (#10, 1957), stage and film actress, died of lung cancer on 7/29/2002, age 74
1933 ● Gary Burden → Grammy-winning designer of music album covers for many rock and pop luminaries, including The Doors, the Eagles, Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne, as well as 40 covers for Neil Young beginning with After The Gold Rush (1970) and continuing for over 35 years, died from undisclosed causes on 3/7/2018, age 84
1934 ● Robert Moog → Keyboard musician and inventor of the synthesizer, built his first electronic instrument – the Theremin – at age 14 and in 1970 produced the MiniMoog “the first compact, easy-to-use synthesizer,” died on 8/21/2005 four months after being diagnosed with brain cancer, age 71
1941 ● General Norman Johnson → Frontman and lead singer for R&B/soul-pop Chairmen Of The Board, “Give Me Just A Little More Time” (#3, 1970), left for a successful songwriting career, including the Grammy-winning “Patches” for Clarence Carter (#4, R&B #2, 1971) and “Want Ads” for Honey Cone (#1, R&B #1, 1971), died from lung cancer on 10/13/2010, age 69
1944 ● Tiki Fulwood / (Raymond Fulwood) → Drummer for R&B/soul-funk (“P-Funk”) giants Parliament-Funkadelic, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#31, 1978), died from stomach cancer on 10/29/1979, age 35
1945 ● Misty Morgan → With husband Jack Blanchard, 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
1946 ● Danny Klein → Bassist for boogie-blues-rock ‘n roll bar band J. Geils Band, wrote “Centerfold” (#1, 1982)
1946 ● Ruth Underwood / (Ruth Komanoff) → Marimba, vibraphone, xylophone and general percussionist for Frank Zappa and his backing band, The Mothers Of Invention (“Brown Shoes Don’t Make It,” 1967) in the 60s and 70s, also did session work for pop-rock Ambrosia, jazz-fusion George Duke and others, retired from music in the 80s
1947 ● Bill Hunt → Horns and keyboards for pop-rock Electric Light Orchestra, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (#4, 1979) and 26 other Top 40 hits
1953 ● Rick Fenn → Guitarist and vocals for soft pop-rock 10cc, “I’m Not In Love” (#2, 1975), session work with Mike Oldfield, Rick Wakeman and others
1955 ● Jim Mankey → Guitarist with post-punk alt rock Concrete Blonde, “Joey” (Modern Rock #1, 1990)
1955 ● Thereza Bazar → Singer for Brit cabaret-pop Guys N’ Dolls, “There’s A Whole Lot Of Loving” (UK #2, 1975), then formed pop duo Dollar with David Van Day, “Mirror, Mirror” (UK #4, 1981), solo
1957 ● Jimmy McShane → Irish-born frontman and lead singer for Italian New Wave synth-pop Baltimora, “Tarzan Boy” (#13, UK #6, 1985), died from AIDS-related causes on 3/29/1995, age 37
1965 ● Simon Gilbert → Drummer in Britpop indie rock Suede, “Trash” (UK #3, 1996)
1967 ● Junior Waite / (Frederick Waite, Jr.) → Vocals for ska/reggae band Musical Youth, “Pass The Dutchie” (#10, 1982)
1967 ● Phil Selway → Drummer for alt/indie rock Radiohead, “There There” (Modern Rock #14, 2003)
1970 ● Matt Flynn → Drummer for alt funk-rock Maroon 5, “She Will Be Loved” (#5, 2004) since 2006, previously played with The B-52’s, Chicago and others
1973 ● Maxwell / (Gerald Maxwell Rivera) → Leading R&B/neo-soul singer, “Fortunate” (#4, R&B #1, 1999)
1974 ● Jewel / (Jewel Kilcher) → Singer/songwriter and guitarist, “You Were Meant For Me” (#3, 1997)
1974 ● Richard Jones → Bassist for Welsh alt rock/trad rock Stereophonics, “Have A Nice Day” (Modern Rock #26, UK #5, 2001)
1978 ● Mad Dog / (Scott Raynor) → Drummer for pop-punk Blink-182, “All The Small Things” (#6, 2000)
1983 ● Heidi Range → Original member and vocalist for Brit dance-pop vocal trio Atomic Kitten, “Whole Again” (UK #1, 2000), then multi-racial pop girl group Sugababes, “Hole In The Head” (Dance/Club #1, 2004)

May 24
1928 ● Max Bennett → Jazz and rock bass guitarist, session musician and bandleader, member of the acclaimed Wrecking Crew group of L.A. studio musicians, played on numerous albums by The Monkees, The Partridge Family, Frank Zappa and many others, co-founded the jazz-rock L.A. Express in the 70s and currently fronts Private Label
1938 ● Tommy Chong → Canadian-American comedian, TV and film actor, voice artist, director and one-half the groundbreaking stoner duo Cheech & Chong, “Santa Claus And His Old Lady” (#3, 1972), performed in various venues with and without his comedic partner through to their reunion in the 00s, became the oldest contestant to make the semi-finals on Dancing With The Stars in September 2014
1938 ● Prince Buster / (Cecil Bustamonte Campbell) → One of the most important figures in the development of ska and rocksteady music in Jamaica and beyond, hugely influential reggae/ska perfumer, producer and solo artist over a nearly 40 year career, scored UK (“Al Capone,” UK #18, 1967) and US hits (“Ten Commandments Of Man,” #81, R&B #17, 1967), dropped out of the industry in the late 70s and recorded and performed only sporadically up to his death following a stroke on 9/8/2016, age 78
1941 ● Bob Dylan / (Robert Allen Zimmerman) → Vastly influential and popular folk-rock singer/songwriter and guitarist with 29 Top 20 albums and five Top 20 singles, including “Like A Rolling Stone” (#2, 1965)
1941 ● Tony Valentino / (Emilio Bellissimo) → Co-founding member, vocals and guitar for garage/proto-punk The Standells, “Dirty Water” (#11, 1966), toured and performed with the band into the 80s, now an L.A.-area restaurateur
1942 ● Derek Quinn → Guitar and harmonica for British Invasion novelty/comedy pop-rock ‘n’ roll Freddie & The Dreamers, “I’m Telling You Now” (#1, 1965)
1944 ● Patti LaBelle (Patricia Holt) / (Patricia Holt) → Soul diva and the “Queen of Rock and Soul”, first with R&B/gospel-doo wop The Blue Belles, “Down The Aisle (The Wedding Song)” (#37, R&B #14, 1963), then as frontwoman for LaBelle, “Lady Marmalade” (#1, 1975), then a long solo career, including a duet with Michael McDonald, “On My Own” (#1, 1986) and a comeback single “New Day” (Dance/Club #11, 2004)
1945 ● Dave Peacock → Bass and vocals for Brit pop-“rockney” duo Chas & Dave, “Gertcha” (UK #20, 1979)
1946 ● Steve Upton → Drummer (1970-1989) for Brit prog-rock Wishbone Ash, “Time Was” (1972)
1947 ● Albert Bouchard → Drummer, guitarist and songwriter for hard rock/pop metal Blue Öyster Cult, “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” (#12, 1976)
1947 ● Plaster Caster / (Cynthia Caster) → Rock groupie known for making plaster casts of rock star’s penises and breasts, including Jimi Hendrix and members of MC5, Television, The Kinks, various road managers and other rock stars
1947 ● Waddy Wachtel / (Robert Wachtel) → High-profile L.A. session musician, composer and record producer, worked in the studio and on tour with Linda Ronstadt, Stevie Nicks, Keith Richards, James Taylor, Iggy Pop, Jackson Browne and many others, composed scores for multiple films, wrote or co-wrote dozens of songs and produced dozens of records by artists from Bryan Ferry to Warren Zevon
1955 ● Rosanne Cash → Country-pop singer/songwriter, “Seven Year Ache” (#22, Country #1, 1981), daughter of country music legend Johnny Cash
1956 ● Larry Blackmon → Leader, drummer, producer and principal songwriter for R&B/funk Cameo, “Word Up” (#6, 1986)
1960 ● Guy Fletcher → Multi-instrumentalist with prog rock Roxy Music, “Love Is The Drug” (#30, 1976), session work for Bryan Ferry, Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler and others
1962 ● Gene Anthony Ray → Actor, dancer and choreographer, played “Leroy’ in the movie and TV series Fame, danced on The Weather Girls‘ video of “It’s Raining Men,” died from a stroke related to HIV on 11/14/2003, age 41
1967 ● Heavy D / (Dwight Myers) → Rapper, singer and MC for R&B/hip hop The Boyz, “Now That We Found Love” (#11, 1991), moved to reggae-rap fusion, died after collapsing outside his L.A. condo on 11/8/2011, age 44
1969 ● Rich Robinson → Guitarist for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1969 ● Tommy Page → Twelve-album, one hit wonder dance-teen-pop singer, “I’ll Be Your Everything” (#1, 1990), producer
1976 ● Alessandro Cortini → Keyboards for industrial rock Nine Inch Nails, “The Day The World Went Away” (#17, 1999)
1988 ● Billy Gilman → Country-pop singer and youngest Country Top 20 artist in history, “One Voice” (#38, Country #20, 2000)

May 25
1921 ● Hal David → Pop/MOR lyricist, co-wrote dozens of hits, often in collaboration with composer Burt Bacharach, 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), died from a stroke on 9/1/2012, age 91
1922 ● Kitty Kallen / (Katherine Kalinsky) → Pop vocalist with 21 Top 40 hits in the 40s and 50s, including “Little Things Mean A Lot” (#1, 1954), retired from singing in 1955 to nurse paralyzed vocal cords but returned in 1959 to score two additional hits before Beatlemania sank her career
1927 ● Norman Petty → Musician and record producer best known for his work in the 50s with Buddy Holly and his backing band, The Crickets, as coach, recording engineer, producer, band manager and occasional co-writer of numerous hit songs, including “Peggy Sue” (#3, 1957), also fronted his own band and produced albums for Roy Orbison, Waylon Jennings, Jimmy Gilmer & The Fireballs and others, died from leukemia on 8/15/1984, age 57
1927 ● Paul Oliver / (Paul Hereford Oliver) → Brit architectural historian whose sideline interest in blues music led him to author several early and authoirtative books on the subject, including “The Story Of The Blues” (1969), wrote multiple biographies and narratives about indigenous American music over 40 years, left an unfinished 1,400 page manuscript on Texas blues when he died from natural causes on 8/15/2017, age 90
1936 ● Tom T. Hall → Grammy-winning country storytelling songwriter and singer, wrote “Harper Valley P.T.A.” for Jeannie C. Riley (#1, 1968) and as a solo artist recorded 21 Country Top 10 hits, including “I Love” (#12, Country #1, 1973)
1936 ● Donnie Elbert → R&B/Northern soul singer with a lone 50s minor hit, “What Can I Do?” (#61, R&B #12, 1957), left for the UK and recorded there with some success in the 60s, returned to the US in 1970 and had eight charting singles in eight years, including “Where Did Our Love Go” (#15, R&B #6, 1971), died of a stroke on 1/26/1989, age 52
1942 ● Blinky Davison / (Brian Davison) → Drummer for 60s Brit prog rock The Nice, “America” (1968), prog rock Refugee and space-rock Gong, died 4/15/2008, age 65
1943 ● Jessi Colter / (Miriam Johnson) → Singer/songwriter and lone female star from the “outlaw country” genre, “I’m Not Lisa” (#4, Country #1, 1975), wife of Waylon Jennings, teamed with Waylon, Willie Nelson and Tompall Glaser on the 1976 album Wanted! The Outlaws, the first country music album to sell over a million copies
1943 ● Poli Palmer / (John Michael Palmer) → Piano and vibraphone for blues/art rock Family, “In My Own Time” (UK #4, 1971)
1945 ● Dave Lee Travis / (David Patrick Griffin) → BBC Radio 1 and TV host, with fellow DJ Paul Burnette released “Convoy GB” (UK #4, 1976) as Laurie Lingo & The Dipsticks, a parody of . McCall‘s “Convoy” (#1, Country #1, 1975)
1947 ● Mitch Margo / (Mitchell Stuart Margo) → Tenor vocals and piano for blue-eyed R&B/doo-wop group The Tokens, was just 14 years old when the band released it’s biggest hit, “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” (#1, 1961), later helped produce albums for the Chiffons and Tony Orlando & Dawn, wrote songs for others, including “Laugh ” (1967) for The Monkees and “Slow Dance” (1989) for The Carpenters, performed with various Tokens lineups, composed TV scores and painted for album covers and children’s books until his death from natural causes on 11/24/2017, age 70
1948 ● Klaus Meine → Lead vocals and frontman for German hard rock/metal Scorpions, “Rock You Like A Hurricane” (#25, 1984)
1949 ● Clarence Burke Jr. → With his four siblings, lead singer in the “First Family of Soul,” Chicago R&B/soul The Five Stairsteps “O-o-h Child” (#7, R&B #14, 1970), worked with Billy Preston and George Harrison‘s Dark Horse label, reformed the Stairsteps with two brothers as R&B/disco The Invisible Man’s Band (“All Night Thing,” Dance/Club #10, 1980), continued to perform until just before his death from undisclosed causes on 5/26/2013, age 64
1950 ● Jean Millington → Vocals and bassist with sister June in pioneering all-girl rock quartet Fanny, “Butter Boy” (#29, 1975), early women-only rock band and first to sign with a major record label, still playing as Slammin’ Babes
1950 ● Robby Steinhardt / (Robert Eugene Steinhardt) → Co-lead singer and violinist for prog/heartland rock Kansas, “Carry On Wayward Son” (#11, 1977), solo
1951 ● Chuck Ruff / (Charles Frederick Carson Ruff) → Rock drummer best known as a founding member of hard rock Edgar Winter Group (“Frankenstein,” #1, 1973 and “Free Ride,” #14, 1973), later played on albums by Sammy Hagar (“Your Love Is Driving Me Crazy” (#13, 1983) and worked in various solo and collaboration bands, died after a long illness on 10/14/2011, age 60
1955 ● John Grimaldi → Guitarist for hard/art rock Argent, “Hold Your Head Up” (#5, 1972)
1958 ● Paul Weller / (John William Weller) → Co-founder, lead singer, guitarist and songwriter for punk rock/modcon trio The Jam, “Going Underground” (UK #1, 1980), then co-founded sophisti-pop-soul The Style Council, “My Ever Changing Moods” (#29, UK #5, 1984), then solo “Peacock Suit” (UK #5, 1996) and 28 other UK Top 40 singles
1959 ● Rick Smith / (Richard Smith) → Keyboards for electro/trance/dance-pop Underworld, “Two Months Off” (Dance/Club #2, 2002)
1975 ● Lauryn Hill → Grammy-winning singer, guitarist and songwriter with R&B/jazz-rap The Fugees, “Killing Me Softly” (#1, 1996), solo, “Doo Wop (That Thing” (#1, 1998)
1980 ● Joe King → Co-founder, guitar, backing vocals and songwriter of mainstream/piano rock The Fray, “How To Save A Life” (#3, 2006)

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 ● Leon Helm / (Mark Lavon Helm) → Arkansas farm boy, drummer and vocals for seminal roots rock The Band, “Up On Cripple Creek” (#25, 1970), solo, producer, bandleader, hosts weekly Midnight Ramble revue near Woodstock, NY, died 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)

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