Posts Tagged pop star birthdays

This Week’s Birthdays (May 31 – June 6)

Happy Birthday this week to:

May 31

1938 ● Johnny Paycheck (Donald Eugene Lytle) → Gruff-voiced country singer, “Take This Job And Shove It” (Country #1, 1978), died in Nashville on 2/19/2003 from emphysema
1938 ● Peter Yarrow → Vocals and guitar for seminal folk trio Peter, Paul & Mary, “Puff (The Magic Dragon)” (#2, 1963)
1940 ● August “Augie” Meyers → Founding member of early country-rock Sir Douglas Quintet (“She’s About A Mover,” #13, 1965) and later the Tejano (fusion of rock, country and various Mexican styles) supergroupTexas Tornados with Doug Sahm, Freddy Fender and Flaco Jimenez
1947 ● William “Junior” Campbell → Lead guitar for pop/rock the Gaylords, then Marmalade, “Reflections Of My Life” (#10, 1970)
1948 ● John Henry “Bonzo” Bonham → Original drummer for influential hard rock Led Zeppelin, “Whole Lotta Love” (#4, 1970), #1 on Rolling Stone magazine’s readers’ poll of the “best drummers of all time”, died after choking on his own vomit on 9/25/1980
1952 ● Karl Bartos → Percussionist for German electro-rock pioneers Kraftwerk, “Autobahn” (#25, 1975), left in 1990 for solo career and collaborations
1954 ● Vicki Sue Robinson → Theater and film actress turned one hit wonder R&B/disco singer, “Turn The Beat Around” (#10, 1976), died of cancer on 4/27/2000
1959 ● Danny Pearson → Bassist for critically acclaimed but light selling alt pop-rock American Music Club (1991 album Everclear)
1962 ● Corey Hart → Canadian singer/songwriter with 27 Canada Top 40 hits, including “Never Surrender” (#3, Canada #1, 1985)
1963 ● Wendy Smith → Guitar and vocals for Brit pop-rock Prefab Sprout, “If You Don’t Love Me” (Dance/Club #3, 1992)
1964 ● Darryl “D.M.C.” McDaniels → MC and rapper for premier hardcore rap group Run-D.M.C., “Walk This Way” (#4, 1986)
1964 ● Scotti Hill (Scott Lawrence Mulvehill) → Longtime guitarist, vocalist and songwriter for New Jersey-based hair metal/pop-metal Skid Row (“I Remember You,” #6, 1989)
1965 ● Steve White → Drummer for sophisti-pop-soul The Style Council, “My Ever Changing Moods” (#29, UK #5, 1984), then sessions, The Players, Trio Valore and stand-in for drummer/brother Alan White of Oasis for several shows
1980 ● Andrew John Hurley → Drummer for alt rock/punk-pop Fall Out Boy, “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race” (#2, 2007)

Jun 01

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

Jun 02

1924 ● Maurice Kinn → Music promoter who launched The New Musical Express (NME) in 1952, started first UK singles chart, sold the weekly in 1963, died on 8/3/2000
1934 ● John E. “Johnny” Carter → First tenor for sophisticated group harmony R&B/doo wop The Flamingos, “I Only Have Eyes For You”, (#11, R&B #3, 1959), in 1964 joined R&B/Chicago soul vocal group The Dells, “Oh, What A Night” (#10, R&B #1, 1969), died on 8/21/2009
1936 ● Otis Williams → Singer and frontman for R&B/doo wop The Charms, “Ivory Tower” (#11, R&B #5, 1956)
1937 ● Jimmy Jones → African American country and pop singer/songwriter best known for his one hit wonder rock ‘n’ roll single “Handy Man” (#2, 1960)
1939 ● Charles Miller → Saxophone and vocals for funk-blues-jazz-rock War, “Cisco Kid” (#2, 1973), murdered in L.A. on 6/14/1980
1941 ● Charlie Watts → Drummer for Blues Incorporated and since 1963 The Rolling Stones, “Honky Tonk Woman” (#1, 1969), also in boogie-woogie Rocket 88, frontman for various incarnations of the Charlie Watts Band, horse breeder
1941 ● William Guest → Backing vocals in R&B/soul-pop family quartet Gladys Knight & The Pips, “Midnight Train To Georgia” (#1, 1973)
1944 ● Marvin Hamlisch → Grammy-winning film, theater and pop music composer, arranger, “The Entertainer” (#3, 1973), co-wrote “The Way We Were” for Barbra Streisand (#1, 1974)
1947 ● Steve Brookins → Founding member and original drummer for Southern arena rockers .38 Special, “Hold On Loosely” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1981)
1950 ● Antone Lee “Chubby” Tavares → Vocals for five brother R&B/funk-disco Tavares, “Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel” (#15, 1976)
1954 ● Michael Susanne Steele → Bass and vocals for New Wave pop-rock The Bangles, “Going Down To Liverpool” (1985)
1957 ● Simon Phillips → Rock session and backing drummer for Phil Manzanera, Brian Eno,Toto, Judas Priest and others, toured with The Who, co-produced with Mike Oldfield, plus several solo albums
1960 ● Tony Hadley → Vocals for New Romantic pop-rock Spandau Ballet, “True” (#4, 1983), solo
1962 ● Thor Eldon Jonsson → Guitarist for Icelandic alt pop-rock The Sugarcubes, “Hit” (Modern Rock #1, 1991)
1965 ● Jeremy Cunningham → Bassist for alt folk-Celtic rock The Levellers, “Just The One” (UK #12, 1995)
1970 ● B Real (Louis Freese) → Vocals and MC for Latino R&B/hip hop Cypress Hill, “Insane In The Brain” (#19, 1994)
1970 ● Dominic Greensmith → Drummer for hard-edged Brit pop Reef, “Place Your Hands” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1997) from the UK #1 album Glow
1976 ● Tim Rice-Oxley → Keyboards for piano-driven pop/rock Keane, “Somewhere Only We Know” (Adult Top 40 #11, 2004)
1980 ● Fabrizio Moretti → Drummer for early 00s garage rock revival The Strokes, “Juicebox” (Modern Rock #9, 2005)
1980 ● Irish Grinsted → Vocals with sister LeMisha in hip hop R&B/dance-pop trio 702, “Where My Girls At?” (#4, 1999), American Music Awards “Best New Soul/R&B Artist” for 2000

Jun 03

1924 ● Jimmy Rogers (James A. Lane) → Chicago-style blues guitarist, singer and harmonica player in Muddy Waters‘ band and with Little Walter Jacobs plus solo, “Walking By Myself” (R&B #14, 1957) and multiple albums including the posthumous Blues Blues Blues (1998) featuring Eric Clapton, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, Taj Mahal and others, died from colon cancer on 12/19/1997
1926 ● Irwin Allen Ginsburg → Poet, leading figure in the Beat Generation of the 50s and frequent participant in various hippie events in the 60s, author of the epic poem “Howl,” longtime friend of Bob Dylan with whom he often collaborated with poetry set to music, died on 4/5/1997 from liver cancer
1942 ● Curtis Mayfield → R&B/soul giant, singer, songwriter and composer, member of The Impressions, “It’s All Right” (#4, R&B #1, 1963), solo, “Freddie’s Dead” (#4, R&B #2, 1972), wrote dozens of R&B and pop hits for others, died on 12/26/1999 after years of steadily declining health following an on-stage accident in 1980
1943 ● Mike Dennis → Second tenor for doo wop a cappella harmony turned early garage-rock/dance craze The Dovells, “Bristol Stomp” (#2, 1961)
1946 ● Ian Hunter (Patterson) → Founding member, songwriter, keyboards and lead singer for early Brit glam-rockers Mott The Hoople, “All The Young Dudes” (#37, 1972), then solo, “Cleveland Rocks” (1979), wrote the book Diary Of A Rock ‘n’ Roll Star (1974)
1946 ● Michael Clarke (Michael Dick) → Drummer for seminal country-rock The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man” (#1, 1965), then Flying Burrito Bros. and light country rock Firefall, “You Are The Woman” (#9, 1976), died of liver failure on 12/19/1993
1947 ● Dave Alexander → Original bassist for influential proto-punk The Stooges, “I Wanna Be Your Dog” (1969), died from pulmonary edema on 2/10/1975
1947 ● Mickey Finn (Michael Hearne) → Percussion for proto-glam-rock T. Rex, “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” (#10, 1971), died 1/11/2003 from suspected liver and kidney failure
1950 ● Florian Pilkington-Miksa → Original drummer for Brit prog/avant garde rock Curved Air, “Back Street Luv” (UK #4, 1974), played in Kiki Dee‘s band, rejoined Curved Air in 2008
1950 ● Deniece “Niecy” Williams (June Deniece Chandler) → Grammy-winning R&B/soul-funk singer and songwriter, worked as a backing singer with Stevie Wonder‘s group Wonderlove, then solo, “Let’s Hear It For The Boy” (#1, 1984)
1950 ● Suzi Quatro (Susan Kay Quatrocchio) → Bass guitarist, singer, songwriter, bandleader, iconoclastic if not well-known female rocker, “Stumblin’ In” (#4, 1979)
1952 ● Billy Powell → Keyboards for raunchy Southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Sweet Home Alabama” (#8, 1974), died 6/28/2009 after suffering a heart attack
1954 ● Dan Hill → Canadian folk-pop singer/songwriter, “Sometimes When We Touch” (#3, 1978)
1956 ● Danny Wilde → Singer, songwriter and guitarist for legendary power pop bands The Quick, Great Buildings and The Rembrandts, “I’ll Be There For You” (#17, 1995), the theme song from the TV show Friends
1962 ● David Cole → Songwriter, vocals, producer and one half of the R&B/electro-dance-pop team C+C Music Factory, “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)” (#1, 1990), producer for Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklin and others, died on 1/25/1995 from complications of AIDS and spinal meningitis
1964 ● Kerry King → Rhythm guitar for “Big Four” thrash metal Slayer, “Hate Worldwide” (#2, 2009)
1965 ● Mike Gordon → Bass, banjo, piano, harmonica and percussion for improv-rock jam band Phish, “Free” (Mainstream Rock #11, 1996), solo and award-winning filmmaker
1968 ● Samantha Sprackling → Vocals for Brit techno-pop Republica, “Drop Dead Gorgeous” (Modern Rock #39, 1997)
1971 ● Ariel Hernandez → With twin brother Gabriel, vocals in dance-pop trio No Mercy, “Where Do You Go” (#5, 1996)
1971 ● Gabriel Hernandez → With twin brother Ariel, vocals in dance-pop trio No Mercy, “Where Do You Go” (#5, 1996)
1974 ● Kelly Jones → Vocalist for Welsh alt rock/trad rock Stereophonics, “Have A Nice Day” (Modern Rock #26, UK #5, 2001)
1985 ● Tavion La’Corey Mathis → Singer for Miami-based R&B/hip-hop quartet Pretty Ricky, “Grind With Me” (#7, 2005)

Jun 04

1937 ● Freddy Fender (Baldemar Garza Huerta) → Grammy-winning Hispanic country singer/songwriter, “Before The Next Teardrop Falls” (#1, Country #1, 1975)
1940 ● Cliff Bennett → Early beat/rock ‘n’ roll singer and bandleader for The Rebel Rousers, lone hit was a cover of the Lennon/McCartney tune “Got To Get You Into My Life” (UK #6, 1966)
1944 ● Michelle Phillips (Holly Michelle Gilliam) → Vocals for folk-pop The Mamas & The Papas, “Monday Monday” (#1, 1966), wife of late bandmate John Phillips, film and TV actress, solo artist and backing vocals on various songs and albums by Belinda Carlisle, Cheech & Chong, the movie soundtrack to California Dreaming (1979), and others
1944 ● Roger Ball → Saxophonist for Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974)
1945 ● Anthony Braxton → Jazz and experimental jazz fusion multi-reedist, bandleader and composer with over 100 albums in a nearly 50 year career, currently a college music professor
1945 ● Gordon Waller → With Peter Asher, 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, died of a heart attack on 7/17/2009
1953 ● Jimmy McCulloch → Scottish rock guitarist and backing vocalist for one hit wonder Brit psych-pop, Pete Townshend-produced Thunderclap Newman, “Something In The Air” (#37, UK #1, 1969), later gigged with John Mayall and Stone The Crows, sessions for John Entwhistle, Peter Frampton and others, played lead guitar for Paul McCartney‘s Wings 1974-77, died from heart failure due to a heroin overdose on 9/27/1979
1956 ● Reeves Gabrels → Multi-genre American virtuoso guitarist, composer and songwriter, collaborated with David Bowie (1987-2000) in Tin Machine, film score musician/producer, multiple session and other collaborative works
1958 ● Selwyn Brown → Vocals and keyboards for roots reggae Steel Pulse, “Prodigal Son” (UK #35, 1978)
1961 ● Eldra Patrick “El” Debarge → With his sister and three brothers, vocals in R&B/urban contemporary dance-pop sibling quintet Debarge, “All This Love” (#17, 1983)
1962 ● Steve Grimes → Guitarist for Brit synth-pop The Farm, “Groovy Train” (#41, Dance/Club #4, 1991)
1964 ● Chris Kavanagh → Drummer for New Wave glam-punk Sigue Sigue Sputnik, “Love Missile F1-11” (Dance/Club #50, UK #3, 1986)
1974 ● Stefan Lessard → Bassist for pop-funk-rock jam band Dave Matthews Band, “Don’t Drink The Water” (#4, 1998)
1976 ● Kasey Chambers → Australian country-rock crossover singer/songwriter with three successive Australian #1 albums and seven Aussie Top 10 hits, including “Not Pretty Enough” (Australia #1, 2002)
1990 ● Zachary Farro → Drummer for alt rock/pop-punk Paramore, “Misery Business” (#27, 2007)

Jun 05

1926 ● Bill Hayes → Country-pop singer, “The Ballad Of Davy Crockett” (#1, 1955), has played the character Doug Williams on the soap opera Days Of Our Lives continuously since 1970
1941 ● Floyd Lawrence Butler → Vocalist for pop-rock vocal group The Friends Of Distinction, “Grazing In The Grass” (#3, 1969), died after a heart attack on 4/29/1990
1946 ● Freddie Stone → Guitarist with his brother Sly and sisters Rosie and Vet in funk-rock Sly & The Family Stone, “Family Affair” (#1, 1971), now a California pastor
1947 ● Laurie Anderson → Multimedia avant garde performance artist and one hit wonder pop-rock singer, “O Superman” (UK #2, 1981)
1947 ● Tom Evans → Bass, vocals and founding member of Brit beat The Iveys, which evolved into power pop Badfinger, “Day After Day” (#4, 1972), committed suicide amidst the band’s legal and financial troubles on 11/9/1983
1948 ● Frank Eslersmith → Keyboards for Aussie light pop-rock Air Supply, “The One That You Love” (#1, 1981), died 3/1/1991
1950 ● Ronnie Dyson → Lead actor/singer in the Broadway musical Hair, “Good Morning Starshine” (#3, 1969), solo R&B/balladeer, “(If You Let Me Make Love To You Then) Why Can’t I Touch You?” (#8, R&B #9, 1970)
1954 ● Michael Henry “Nicko” McBrain → Drummer for Brit heavy metal Iron Maiden, “Flight Of Icarus” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1983)
1956 ● Kenny G. (Kenneth Gorelick) → Grammy-winning, hugely successful smooth jazz/adult contemporary saxophonist, composer and bandleader, “Songbird” (#4, 1987)
1956 ● Richard Butler → Vocals and frontman for Brit New Wave post-punk The Psychedelic Furs, “Pretty In Pink” (#41, 1981), then formed Love Spit Love, “Am I Wrong?” (#83, 1994)
1964 ● Margaret “Maggie” Dunne → Guitar and vocals for all-girl New Wave pop-punk quartet Fuzzbox (originally We’ve Got A Fuzz Box And We’re Gonna Use It), “International Rescue” (UK #11, 1989)
1965 ● Stefan Schönfeldt → Bassist for Swedish alt rock The Wannadies, “You And Me Song” (UK #18, 1996)
1969 ● Brian McKnight → Multi-instrumentalist producer and R&B/smooth soul singer and songwriter, “Back At One” (#1, 1999), collaborator with Mariah Carey, Vanessa Williams, Rascal Flatts, Christina Aguilera and many others, former talk radio host
1970 ● Clause Noreen → Keyboardist for Danish dance-pop Aqua, “Barbie Girl” (#7, 1997), which drew a lawsuit from Mattel for its sexual content
1971 ● Mark “Marky Mark” Wahlberg → Early member (with brother Donnie) of 90s teen-pop boy band New Kids On The Block, “Step By Step” (#1, 1990), left to front hip hop/pop-rap Marky Mark & The Funky Bunch, “Good Vibrations (#1, 1991), now an acclaimed film actor in Boogie Nights (1997), The Perfect Storm (2000), The Shooter (2007), The Fighter (2010) and others
1974 ● Aaron “P-Nut” Wills → Bassist for alt-rock reggae-rap-metal 311, “All Mixed Up” (Modern Rock #4, 1996), solo, producer
1974 ● Dominic Chad → Lead guitar and backing vocals for post-Brit-pop hard rock Mansun, “Wide Open Space” (Modern Rock #25, 1997)
1979 ● Pete Wentz → Bassist for alt rock/punk-pop Fall Out Boy, “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race” (#2, 2007)
1981 ● Sebastien Lefebvre → Rhythm guitar and backing vocals for French-Canadian pop-punk Simple Plan, “Perfect” (#24, Canada #5, 2003)

Jun 06

1936 ● Levi Stubbs (Stubbles) → Vocals for six decade R&B/soul vocal quartet The Four Tops, “Reach Out (I’ll Be There)” (#1, 1966), died in his sleep on 10/17/2008
1939 ● Gary “U.S.” Bonds (Gary Levone Anderson) → R&B/soul and rock ‘n’ roll singer and songwriter, “Quarter To Three” (#1, 1961) and “This Little Girl” (#11, 1981)
1942 ● Howard Kane (Kirschenbaum) → Vocals for clean cut pop-rock Jay & The Americans, “Cara Mia” (#4, 1965) and nine other Top 30 hits
1944 ● Edgar Froese → Founder, frontman, keyboards and guitarist of atmospheric space/new age electro-synth proto-Kraut rock Tangerine Dream, solo
1944 ● Peter Albin → Guitarist for 60s Janis Joplin-fronted, psych-rock Big Brother & The Holding Company, “Piece Of My Heart” (#12, 1968) and her solo albums
1955 ● Michael Wallace → Keyboards for reggae/R&B-funk fusion band Third World, “Now That We’ve Found Love” (#47, R&B #9, 1979), shot dead on 7/6/1999
1959 ● Robert “Bobby Bluebell” Hodgens → Guitar and frontman for Scottish jangle-pop-rock The Bluebells, “Young At Heart” (UK #1, 1993)
1960 ● Steve Vai → Grammy-winning virtuoso rock guitarist, first with Frank Zappa‘s band, then hard rock Alcatrazz, David Lee Roth‘s band, Whitesnake, “Here I Go Again” (#1, 1987), plus numerous albums as solo and bandleader, “I Would Love To” (Mainstream Rock #38, 1990)
1961 ● Dee C. Lee (Diane Catherine Sealy) → Vocals for New Wave dance-pop Wham!, “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” (#1, 1984), left to join sophisti-pop-soul The Style Council, “My Ever Changing Moods” (#29, UK #5, 1984), then solo “See The Day” (UK #3, 1985)
1961 ● Tomas Enrique “Tom” Araya → Bass and vocals for “Big Four” thrash metal Slayer, “Hate Worldwide” (#2, 2009)
1964 ● Jay Dee Bentley → Co-founder, bassist and songwriter for hardcore punk Bad Religion, “Infected” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1995)
1965 ● David White → Guitar and vocals for Brit soul/pop boy band Brother Beyond, “The Harder I Try” (UK #2, 1988)
1966 ● Gary Newby → Guitar, vocals and songwriting for Brit alt rock/power pop The Railway Children, “Every Beat Of The Heart” (Alt Rock #1, 1990)
1970 ● James “Munky” Shaffer → Guitarist for Nu metal Korn, “Here To Stay” (Mainstream #4, 2002)
1974 ● Uncle Kracker (Matthew Shafer) → Long time vocals and DJ in Kid Rock‘s band, then rock/hip hop fusion solo career, “Follow Me” (#5, 2001), now country-rock, “Smile” (#31, 2009)
1978 ● Carl Barât → Co-founder, vocals, lead guitar and songwriter for indie/punk revival The Libertines, “Can’t Stand Me Now” (UK #2, 2004), solo and pub owner
1987 ● Kyle Falconer → Lead guitarist, songwriter and lead vocalist for Scottish retro-rock/ska punk The View, “Same Jeans” (UK #3, 2007)

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This Week’s Birthdays (September 28 – October 4)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Sep 28

1901 ● Ed Sullivan → Bandleader, entertainment writer and host of his own TV variety show for 23 years, introduced The Beatles to over 70 million American viewers on 2/9/1964, died from esophageal cancer on 10/13/1974
1923 ● Tuli Kupferberg → Counterculture author, poet, cartoonist, pacifist and co-founder of satirical underground rock The Fugs, solo, died from kidney failure on 7/12/2010
1925 ● Billy Grammer → Country guitarist, “Gotta Travel On” (#4, 1959), fronted The Travel On Boys, led businesses which produced guitars under his name, member of the Grand Ole Opry, died after a long illness on 8/10/2011
1935 ● Koko Taylor (Cora Walton) → The “Queen of Chicago Blues”, large-framed and -voiced R&B/blues belter, “Wang Dang Doodle” (#58, R&B #4, 1966), won Grammy Award as part of the compilation album Blues Explosion (1984), died following gastrointestinal surgery on 6/3/2009
1938 ● Ben E. King (Benjamin Earl Nelson) → R&B/smooth soul singer with doo wop The Drifters, “Save The Last Dance For Me” (#1, 1960) and solo, “Stand By Me” (#1, 1961), still touring and recording in 2011
1943 ● Nick St. Nicholas (Klaus Karl Kassbaum) → German-born Canadian bass guitarist, co-founded hard rock The Sparrow, which became Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968), currently leader of supergroup World Classic Rockers
1946 ● Helen Shapiro → Early 60s beehive-hair Brit teen-pop singer, “Walking Back to Happiness” (UK #1, 1961), moved to cabaret and stage musicals in the 70s
1950 ● Paul Burgess → Journeyman Brit drummer for soft pop/art-rock 10cc, “I’m Not In Love” (#2, 1975), The Invisible Girls, Magna Carta, Jethro Tull, Camel, The Icicle Works, Joan Armatrading and others, with Katy Lied as of 2010
1951 ● Norton Buffalo (Phillip Jackson) → Blues and country-rock harmonica player, songwriter, singer and bandleader, toured with ‘Commander Cody, sessions for Bonnie Raitt, The Doobie Brothers, Elvin Bishop and others, member of the Steve Miller Band, “Fly Like An Eagle” (#2, 1977), frontman for The Stampede and later The Knockouts, died on 10/30/2009 from cancer
1952 ● Andy Ward → Drummer and founding member of 70s prog rock Camel, later with prog-rock revival group Marillion, “Kayleigh” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1985) and 90s supergroup Mirage
1953 ● Jim Diamond → Scottish singer, songwriter and guitarist with Gully Foyle, The Alexis Korner Band, Bandit and PhD, “I Won’t Let You Down” (UK #3, 1982), then solo, “I Should Have Know Better” (UK #1, 1984)
1954 ● George Lynch → Guitarist for pop-metal Dokken, “Alone Again” (1984), solo, fronted Lynch Mob, “Tangled In The Web” (Modern Rock #13, 1992) and Souls Of We
1960 ● Jennifer Rush (Heidi Stern) → German-American superstar dance-pop singer, “The Power Of Love” (#57, UK #1, 1985) and multiple other Top 40 hits in various European countries, virtually unknown in the US
1962 ● Peter Hooton → Founder and lead vocals for Brit synth-pop The Farm, “Groovy Train” (#41, Dance/Club #4, 1991)
1966 ● Kenny Wilson (Ginger Fish) → Drummer for industrial-pop-metal/shock rock Marilyn Manson, “The Dope Show” (Mainstream Rock #12, 1998)
1967 ● Moon Unit Zappa → Film and TV actress, MTV and VH-1 VJ, artist, monologue vocals on “Valley Girl” (#32, 1982), daughter of Frank Zappa and spouse of Matchbox Twenty drummer Paul Doucette
1977 ● Young Jeezy (Jay Wayne Jenkins) → Hip hop business entrepreneur turned Southern/gangsta rapper, founded Corporate Thugz Entertainment , solo artist, “Soul Survivor” (#4, 2005), member of Boyz ‘N Da Hood and U.S.D.A.
1984 ● Melody Thorton → Vocals for burlesque dance-pop girl troupe The Pussycat Dolls, “Don’t Cha” (#2, 2005)
1987 ● Hilary Duff → TV actress and star of Lizzie McGuire show, then teen dance-pop, “With Love” (#24, Dance/Club #1, 2007), movie actress, apparel designer and author

Sep 29

1907 ● Orvon Grover “Gene” Autry → The “Singing Cowboy” on radio, TV and in 93 films, cut over 600 records, scored 25 consecutive Top 10 Country hits between 1944 and 1952, including “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” (#1, Country #1, 1949), died of lymphoma on 10/2/1998
1935 ● Jerry Lee Lewis → The “Killer”, iconic and scandalous rock ‘n roll legend, keyboardist, singer and songwriter, “Great Balls Of Fire” (#2, 1957), #24 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, still performing as of 2010
1937 ● Joe “Guitar” Hughes → Texas blues, R&B and shuffle guitarist, played with Little Richard‘s group The Upsetters, Johnny Copeland, T-Bone Walker, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Big Joe Turner and others, solo, died 5/20/2003 after a heart attack
1939 ● Tommy Boyce → In collaboration with Bobby Hart, pop singer, “I Wonder What She’s Doing Tonight” (#8, 1968) and the prolific Boyce & Hart hit songwriting team, “Last Train To Clarksville” (The Monkees, #1, 1966) plus dozens more Top 40 hits and over 300 songs, committed suicide on 11/23/1994 after years of struggle with depression
1942 ● Jean-Luc Ponty → French virtuoso jazz and prog rock fusion electric violinist, album Enigmatic Ocean reached #35 in 1977, switched to synthesizers in the mid-80s and to world music in the 90s
1943 ● Manuel Fernandez → Electric organ 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 ● Mike Post (Leland Michael Postil) → Prolific, well-known and highly regarded TV and film theme composer, wrote cop show theme song “Hill Street Blues” (#10, 1981) and other popular shows, five-time Grammy Award winner
1947 ● Peter Hope-Evans → Harmonica and Jew’s harp in Brit folk-rock duo Medicine Head, “One And One Is One” (UK #3, 1973)
1948 ● Mike Pinera → Guitarist and singer with pop-rock Blues Image, “Ride Captain Ride” (#4, 1970), later solo and with Iron Butterfly, Cactus and Classic Rock All Stars
1948 ● Mark Farner → Lead singer and guitarist for hard rock/early heavy metal power trio Grand Funk Railroad, “We’re An American Band” (#1, 1973), toured with Ringo Starr’s Allstars in mid-90s
1956 ● Suzzy Roche → Singer/songwriter in critically-acclaimed but commercially-marginal female folk-pop harmony vocal sister trio The Roches, backed Paul Simon, solo
1957 ● Mari Wilson → Retro-60s beehive-hairdo R&B-pop-quiet storm singer, “Just What I Always Wanted” (UK#8, 1982)
1958 ● Mick Harvey → Multi-instrumentalist, long association with alt rock Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds, “Where The Wild Roses Grow” (Australia #2, UK #11, 1995)
1963 ● Les Claypool → Bassist with funk-metal Primus, “N.I.B.” (Mainstream Rock #2, 2000), solo, film producer
1965 ● Ian Baker → Keyboards for techno-electronic pop-dance Jesus Jones, “Right Here, Right Now” (#2, 1991)
1966 ● Tony “Doggen” Foster → Guitarist in Julian Cope‘s backing band, with trip hop Olive, “You’re Not Alone” (Dance/Club #5, UK #1, 1996), power trio Brain Donor and space rock Spiritualized
1968 ● Brad Smith → Bass, flute and backing vocals for roots-psych-alt rock Blind Melon, “No Rain” (Modern Rock #1, 1993), solo, later alt rock Unified Theory, rejoined Blind Melon in 2006
1968 ● Luke Goss → With twin brother Matt, drummer in Brit teen idol pop boy band Bros, “I Owe You Nothing” (UK#1, 1988), solo and film acting credits
1968 ● Matthew Goss → With twin brother Luke, lead singer in Brit teen idol pop boy band Bros, “I Owe You Nothing” (UK#1, 1988), solo and currently performing in Las Vegas
1969 ● DeVante Swing (Donald DeGrate, Jr.) → Vocals and songwriter in R&B/electro-dance “bad boy” quartet Jodeci, “Lately” (#4, 1993), founded Swing Mob Records, producer
1969 ● Jonathan Auer → Guitarist, singer and songwriter for power pop The Posies, “Dream All Day” (Mainstream Rock #17, 1993), toured and recorded with power pop Big Star and The Squirrels, solo
1981 ● Suzanne Shaw → Singer for pre-fab mockstar dance-pop Hear’Say, “Pure And Simple” (UK #1, 2001), stage actress and TV host
1987 ● Joshua Farro → Guitarist for alt rock/pop-punk Paramore, “Misery Business” (#27, 2007)

Sep 30

1933 ● Cissy Houston (Emily Drinkard) → R&B/soul singer in gospel-soul family group The Drinkard Singers, then vocal team The Group backed Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Luther Vandross and others, fronted soul-pop The Sweet Inspirations, solo, “Think It Over” (Dance/Club #5, 1978), mother of Whitney Houston
1935 ● Johnny Mathis → Jazz-pop adult contemporary vocalist, “Chances Are” (#1, 1957) and “Too Much Too Little Too Late (#1, 1978) plus 18 other Top 40 hits, Greatest Hits album remained on the US chart for over nine years
1940 ● Dewey Martin (Walter Milton Dwayne Midkiff) → Canadian drummer with country-rock The Dillards, then co-founded folk-rock Buffalo Springfield, “For What It’s Worth” (#7, 1967) and stayed with the band through various incarnations into the 90s, died 2/1/2009 from unknown causes
1942 ● Franklin Joseph “Frankie” Lymon → Teenage lead singer and frontman for The Teenagers, “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” (#6, 1956), died from a drug overdose on 2/28/1968
1942 ● Gus Dudgeon → Record producer, primarily for The Beach Boys, Elton John, David Bowie, The Zombies, Kiki Dee, Strawbs, XTC and Joan Armatrading, died with his wife in a car accident on 7/21/2002
1943 ● Marilyn McCoo → Lead vocals for mainstream R&B/soul-pop The 5th Dimension, “Wedding Bell Blues” (#1, 1969), then Grammy-winning solo career, including duet with spouse Billy Davis Jr., “You Don’t Have To Be A Star (To Be In My Show)” (R&B #6, 1976), now TV host and stage actress
1947 ● Marc Bolan (Mark Field) → Guitarist, songwriter and frontman for proto-glam-rock T. Rex, “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” (#10, 1971), released several solo albums, died in a car accident on 9/16/1977
1952 ● John Lombardo → Co-founder, guitarist and songwriter for folk-pop 10,000 Maniacs, left to form duo John & Mary, returned with partner Mary Ramsey in 1994, “More Than This” (#25, 1997)
1954 ● Lesley Beach → Saxophone for Brit reggae-pop-ska band Amazulu, “Too Good To Be Forgotten” (UK #5, 1986)
1954 ● Patrice Rushen → Grammy-winning R&B/jazz-pop pianist, producer, composer and vocalist, “Forget Me Nots” (#23, R&B #4, 1982), music professor, sessions and touring bands
1956 ● Basia Trzetrzelewska → Polish jazz-pop female vocalist in the Latin dance-pop jazz trio Matt Bianco, then solo, “Time And Tide” (#26, 1988) and “Drunk On Love” (Dance/Club #1, 1994)
1962 ● Brian Bonhomme → Guitar and vocals for New Wave swing/pop Roman Holliday, “Don’t Try To Stop It” (#68, UK #14, 1983)
1964 ● Ernest Joseph “Trey” Anastasio III → Guitarist, songwriter and de facto frontman for improv-rock jam band Phish, “Free” (Mainstream Rock #11, 1996), solo
1964 ● Robby Takac → Bassist for alt-rock Goo Goo Dolls, “Iris” (#1, 1998)
1984 ● Keisha Buchanan → Singer in Brit multi-racial pop girl group Sugababes, “Hole In The Head” (Dance/Club #1, 2004)

Oct 01

1930 ● Richard Harris → Irish actor, film director, theatrical producer and adult contemporary singer/songwriter, “Macarthur Park” (#2, 1968), died of cancer on 10/25/2002
1932 ● Albert Collins → The “Master of the Telecaster,” influential electric blues singer and guitarist, “Get Your Business Straight” (R&B #46, 1972) and Grammy-winning album Live ’92/93 (1993), died from liver cancer on 11/24/1993
1935 ● Julie Andrews (Julia Elizabeth Wells) → Film and stage actress, author and Grammy-winning singer, “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” (#66, 1965)
1942 ● Herb Fame (Herbert Feemster) → Male vocalist and only constant member of R&B/soul-pop duo Peaches & Herb, “Reunited” (#1, 1978), now a Washington, DC police officer
1943 ● Jerry Martini → Co-founder and saxophone for R&B/funk Sly & The Family Stone, “Everyday People” (#1, 1969), played with Rubicon and Prince‘s backing band
1944 ● Barbara Parritt → Singer for R&B/pop girl trio The Toys, “A Lover’s Concerto” (#2, 1965)
1944 ● Herbert “Toubo” Rhoad → Baritone vocals for a cappella The Persuasions, “Chain Gang” (1971), died on 12/8/1988 while on tour with the group
1945 ● Donny Hathaway → Rising star smooth R&B/soul singer best known for duets with Roberta Flack, including “Where Is The Love?” (#5, 1972), jumped from New York City hotel window 1/13/1979
1947 ● Martin Turner → Founding member, bass and vocals for prog/hard rock, twin lead guitar pioneers Wishbone Ash, “Time Was” (1972)
1947 ● Rob Davis → Guitarist for Brit “good time” glam-rock ‘n’ roll Mud, “Tiger Feet” (UK #1, 1974), songwriter who co-wrote “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” for Kylie Minogue (#7, 2002)
1948 ● Mariska Veres → Lead vocals and frontgal for Dutch pop-rock one hit wonder Shocking Blue, “Venus” (#1, 1970), died from cancer on 12/2/2006
1948 ● Michael “Cub” Koda → Guitarist, founder, frontman and songwriter for hard rock Brownsville Station, “Smokin’ In The Boys Room” (#3, 1973), solo career, disc jockey and music journalist, died on 7/5/2000 from kidney failure
1955 ● Howard Hewett → Lead vocalist and frontman for R&B-urban contemporary Shalamar, solo “I’m For Real” (R&B #2, 1986), solo
1957 ● Andy Walton → Drummer for glam pop-rock Kenny, “The Bump” (UK #3, 1975)
1958 ● Martin Cooper → Saxophonist and occasional songwriter for New Wave synth-pop Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, “If You Leave” (#4, 1986), painter
1959 ● Youssou N’Dour → Senegalese dance-pop percussionist and singer, vocals on Paul Simon‘s “Graceland” (1986), solo, “7 Seconds” (#98, UK #3, 1994), worked with Peter Gabriel, Wyclef Jean, Bruce Springsteen, Sting and others
1968 ● Kevin Griffin → Founder, guitarist, songwriter and lead vocalist for alt pop-rock Better Than Ezra, “Good” (#30, Modern Rock #1, 1995)
1973 ● LaTocha Scott → Vocals for female R&B/dance-pop quartet Xscape, “Understanding” (#8, 1993)
1974 ● Keith Duffy → Vocals for Irish teen-pop boy band Boyzone, “No Matter What” (Adult Contemporary #12, 1999), TV actor
1985 ● Dizzee Rascal (Dylan Kwabena Mills) → British garage songwriter, record producer and rapper, “Holiday (UK #1, 2009)

Oct 02

1938 ● Nick Gravenites → Blues, rock and folk guitarist, vocalist, songwriter and producer, worked with Quicksilver Messenger Service and Janis Joplin‘s Kozmic Blues Band, joined The Butterfield Blues Band and founded blues-rock Electric Flag with Mike Bloomfield, wrote the score to the film The Trip (1967) and produced the music to the film Steelyard Blues = (1973), inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2003
1939 ● Lolly Vasquez → With brother Patrick, co-founder, guitar and vocals for Native American rockers Redbone, “Come And Get Your Love” (#5, 1974), died 3/4/2010
1941 ● Ron Meagher → Co-founder and bassist in pop-rock The Beau Brummels, “Laugh, Laugh” (#15, 1964)
1945 ● Don McLean → Folk-rock singer/songwriter best known for his 8 minute epic, “American Pie” (#1, 1971), the song inspired by and a tribute to the death of Buddy Holly
1946 ● Ron Griffiths → Bassist, vocals and songwriter for power pop quartet The Iveys, “Maybe Tomorrow” (#67, 1968), left before the band changed its name and became Badfinger
1949 ● Richard Hell (Meyers) → Bassist, singer and songwriter, one of the original New York punk rockers, co-founded punk-rock Television, then fronted The Voidoids, “Blank Generation” (1977), now an author
1950 ● Mike Rutherford → Bass, backing vocals and one of two constant members of prog-rock turned pop-rock Genesis, “Invisible Touch” (#1, 1986), fronts side project Mike + The Mechanics, “All I Need Is A Miracle” (#5, 1986)
1951 ● Sting (Gordon Matthew Sumner) → Lead vocals, bass guitar and songwriter for post-punk The Police, “Every Breath You Take” (#1, 1983), then highly successful solo career, “Fortress Around Your Heart” (#1, 1985) and five other Top 20 hits and 11 Grammy Awards
1952 ● John Otway → Novelty folk-rock cult singer/songwriter, “Really Free” (UK #27, 1977) with Wild Willy Barrett and “Bunsen Burner” (UK #9, 2002)
1955 ● Philip Oakey → Vocals for late-70s synth-pop pioneers The Human League, “Don’t You Want Me” (#1, 1981)
1956 ● Freddie Jackson → R&B/urban soul balladeer, “You Are My Lady” (#12, R&B #1, 1985) and nine other R&B #1 hits
1958 ● Robbie Nevil → Songwriter, guitarist and pop-rock solo singer, “C’est La Vie” (#2, 1987), producer and writer for Babyface, Jessica Simpson, Destiny’s Child, Smash Mouth and others
1960 ● Al Connelly → Guitarist for Canadian pop-rock Glass Tiger, “Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone)” (#2, 1986)
1962 ● Claude V. McKnight, III → Vocals in a cappella gospel Take 6, “I L-O-V-E U” (R&B #19, 1990)
1962 ● Sigtryggur “Siggi” Baldursson → Drummer in Icelandic alt pop-rock The Sugarcubes, “Hit” (Modern Rock #1, 1991)
1965 ● Floyd I. “Bud” Gaugh IV → Drums and percussion for California ska-punk revivalist trio Sublime, “What I Got” (#29, 1997)
1969 ● Badly Drawn Boy (Damon Gough) → Alternative rock singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, “You Were Right” (UK #9, 2002)
1970 ● Dion Allen → Backing vocals in hip hop/urban rap quintet Az Yet, “Last Night” (#9, R&B #1, 1996)
1971 ● Tiffany Renee Darwish → Late 80s teen queen and bubblegum pop singer, “Could’ve Been” (#1, 1987) and “I Think We’re Alone Now” (#1, 1987)
1973 ● Lene Grawford Nystrøm Rasted → Vocals for Danish dance-pop Aqua, “Barbie Girl” (#7, 1997), which drew a lawsuit from Mattel for its sexual content

Oct 03

1938 ● Eddie Cochran → Rockabilly pioneer singer, songwriter and influential power chord guitarist, “Summertime Blues” (#8, 1958), died in a car crash while on tour in England on 4/17/1960
1941 ● Chubby Checker (Ernest Evans) → Grammy-winning R&B/pop singer and early 60s dance-craze instigator, “The Twist” (#1, 1960 and 1962), the only song to hit #1 in the US singles charts twice, plus 17 other Top 40 hits
1941 ● Lenny Waronker → Record producer and former CEO of Warner Bros. Records, worked with Maria Muldaur, Gordon Lightfoot, Randy Newman, The Doobie Brothers and multiple other 70s rock bands, partner with DreamWorks development team
1945 ● Antonio Martinez → Guitarist for Spanish rock ‘n roll band Los Bravos, “Black Is Black” (US #4, 1966), the first US Top 10 hit by a Spanish band
1949 ● Lindsey Buckingham → Guitar, vocals and songwriter for pop duo Buckingham Nicks, joined pop-rock Fleetwood Mac in 1974, wrote “Go Your Own Way” (#10, 1977), then solo, “Trouble” (#9, 1981), producer
1950 ● Ronnie Laws → Jazz, blues and funk saxophonist and singer, first with R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975), then solo, “Every Generation” (R&B #12, 1980), sessions for Ramsey Lewis, Hugh Masekela, Sister Sledge and others
1954 ● Stevie Ray Vaughan → Grammy-winning Texas blues-rock guitar master, “Crossfire” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1983), died in a helicopter crash on 8/27/1990 following a show in Wisconsin
1961 ● Robbie Jaymes → Keyboards for Brit dance-pop band Modern Romance, “Can You Move” (Dance/Club #2, 1981) and “Best Years Of Our Lives” (UK #4, 1982)
1962 ● Tommy Lee (Bass) → Drummer in hair-metal Mötley Crüe, “Dr. Feelgood” (#6, 1989), founded rap-metal band Methods of Mayhem, “Get Naked” (2000) and other solo work, former spouse of actresses Heather Locklear and Pamela Anderson
1965 ● Neil Sims → Drummer for Brit indie rock/shoegazing band Catherine Wheel, “Black Metallic” (Modern Rock #9, 1991)
1966 ● Dan Miller → Guitarist for at pop-rock They Might Be Giants, “Birdhouse In Your Soul” (#3, Modern Rock, 1990)
1967 ● Chris Collingwood → Singer, songwriter, rhythm guitarist and founding member of power pop band Fountains Of Wayne, “Stacy’s Mom” (#21, 2003)
1969 ● Gwen Stefani → Lead vocals for rock/ska No Doubt, “Underneath It All” (#3, 2002), then solo, “Hollaback Girl” (#1, 2005) from the 2004 worldwide Top 10 album Love, Angel, Music, Baby, fashion designer
1971 ● Kevin Richardson → Vocals in pop-dance-hip hop Backstreet Boys, “Quit Playing Games With My Heart” (#2, 1997)
1975 ● India.Aire Simpson → Grammy-winning neo-classic R&B/soul singer and songwriter, “Little Things” (Song of the Year, 2000)
1978 ● Jake Shears (Jason Sellards) → Vocals dance-glam-rock Scissor Sisters, “Filthy Gorgeous” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)
1979 ● Nate Wood → Drums, percussion and backing vocals for post-grunge alt rock The Calling, “Wherever You Will Go” (#5, 2001)
1983 ● Danny O’Donoghue → Irish singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in teen-pop boy band Mytown, “Body Bumpin'” (Canada #12, 2000) then Celtic folk-pop-rock The Script, “Breakeven” (#12, 2010)
1984 ● Ashlee Simpson → Reality TV series actress and teen-dance-pop singer, “Pieces Of Me” (#5, 2004), fodder for tabloid magazines

Oct 04

1929 ● Leroy Van Dyke → Country-pop singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Walk On By” (#5, Country #1, 1961), named by Billboard magazine as the most popular country song of all time
1937 ● Pirkle Lee Moses, Jr. → Lead vocals for Chicago doo wop The El Dorados, “At My Front Door” (#17, R&B #1, 1955), fronted various incarnations of the group until his death on 12/6/2000
1944 ● Marlena Davis → Vocals in mixed gender R&B doo-wop quartet The Orlons, “The Wah-Watusi” (#2, R&B #5, 1962)
1947 ● Jim Fielder → Bassist for jazz-rock/pop-rock fusion band Blood, Sweat & Tears, “Spinning Wheel” (#2, 1969), sessions
1952 ● Jody Stevens → Drummer and last surviving original member of power pop cult band Big Star, “September Gurls” (1974, Rolling Stone #178), currently a studio engineer
1957 ● Barbara K. MacDonald (Kooyman) → With husband Pat MacDonald, one half of one hit wonder alt country-folk-pop duo Timbuk 3, “The Future’s So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades” (#19, 1986), solo
1959 ● Chris Lowe → Keyboards for synth-pop dance Pet Shop Boys, “West End Girls” (#1, 1986)
1962 ● Juan “Jon” Secada → Cuban-American R&B and pop singer and songwriter, “Just Another Day” (#5, 1992), two albums have won Grammy Awards for Best Latin Pop Performance
1965 ● Leo Barnes → Saxophone for Irish rockers Hothouse Flowers, “Don’t Go” (Modern Rock #7, 1988)
1984 ● Lena Katina (Elena Sergeevna Katina) → Singer in Russian teen pop duo t.A.T.u., “All The Things She Said” (#20, UK #1, 2003), solo

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This Week’s Birthdays (February 24 – March 2)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Feb 24

1941 ● Joanie Sommers (Drost) → One hit wonder 60s teen pop vocalist, “Johnny Get Angry” (#7, 1962), then Pepsi commercial jingles
1942 ● Paul Jones (Paul Pond) → Harmonica and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock Manfred Mann, “Do Wah Diddy Diddy” (#1, 1964) and Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, “Blinded By The Light” (#1, 1977), solo, actor and BBC radio presenter
1944 ● Nicky Hopkins → Session pianist for Quicksilver Messenger Service, Jeff Beck, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, John Lennon, Steve Miller, Small Faces, The Who and others, died on 9/6/1994 from complications following intestinal surgery
1947 ● Lonnie Turner → Bassist for blues-rock then psych-rock then pop-rock Steve Miller Band, “The Joker” (#1, 1973)
1947 ● Rupert Holmes → Pop-rock singer/songwriter, “Escape (The Pina Colada Song)” (#1, 1979), wrote the 1985 Tony Award-winning musical Drood
1948 ● Dennis Waterman → Brit TV and film actor and singer with the theme from UK TV show Minder, “I Could Be So Good For You” (UK #3, 1980)
1959 ● Colin Farley → Bassist for New Wave pop-rock Cutting Crew, “I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1962 ● Michelle Shocked (Karen Michelle Johnston) → Urban/indie folk singer, songwriter and guitarist, “If Love Was A Train” (Modern Rock #20, 1988)
1973 ● Chris “3” Fehn → Percussionist and backing vocals for Grammy-winning alt metal/rap-metal Slipknot, “Duality” (Mainstream Rock #5, 2004), now bassist with noise metal Will Haven
1974 ● Charles Edward “Chad” Hugo → Multi-instrumentalist and one half of the funk-dance-rock hip hop band N.E.R.D., “She Wants To Move” (Dance #6, 2004) and hip hop production and writing duo The Neptunes, produced numerous #1 hits for Mystikal, Jay-Z, *NSYNC, Britney Spears and Nelly
1974 ● Noah “Wuv” Bernardo, Jr. → Founding member and drummer of Grammy-nominated Christian metal band P.O.D., “Alive” (Modern Rock #2, 2001)
1978 ● John Nolan → Lead vocals and guitar for punk-pop Taking Back Sunday, “Makedamnsure” (#48, 2006), left to form emo-pop quartet Straylight Run
1983 ● Matt McGinley → Co-founder and drummer for alt hip hop/rap rock Gym Class Heroes, “Intramurals: Cupid’s Chokehold” (#4, 2007), solo

Feb 25

1932 ● Faron Young → The “Hillbilly Heartthrob”, country singer/songwriter, “Hello Walls” (#12, 1961), committed suicide on 12/10/1996
1942 ● Loy Bones (Roy Michaels) → With Stephen Stills and Richie Furay in the Au Go Go Singers, then co-founded alt country rock Cat Mother & The All Night Newsboys, “Good Old Rock ‘N’ Roll” (#21, 1969)
1943 ● George Harrison → Lead guitarist (Rolling Stone #21), singer and songwriter for The Beatles, wrote their hit “Something” (#1, 1969), then solo, “My Sweet Lord” (#1, 1970), died of cancer on 11/29/2001
1945 ● Elkie Brooks (Elaine Bookbinder) → Pop-rock singer in Vinegar Joe with Robert Palmer, then solo, “Pearl’s A Singer” (UK #8, 1977)
1947 ● David Stensen → Original bassist for AM Top 40 pop-rockers The Grass Roots, “Midnight Confessions” (#5, 1968)
1957 ● Dennis Diken → Drummer for alt pop-rock The Smithereens, “Only A Memory” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1988)
1957 ● Stuart “Woody” Wood → Bass guitar for Scottish teen-pop Bay City Rollers, “Saturday Night” (#1, 1976)
1959 ● Mike Peters → Lead singer, songwriter and guitarist for post-punk anthem rockers The Alarm, “Sold Me Down The River” (Mainstream #2, 1989), then solo and Dead Men Walking
1962 ● Pia Maiocco → Founding member and original bassist for critically-panned but huge selling 80s all-female glam metal quartet Vixen, “Cryin'” (#22, 1989), wife of influential guitar virtuoso Steve Vai
1965 ● Brian Baker → Bassist and sometime rhythm guitar for punk rock Minor Threat, then hardcore punk Bad Religion, “Infected” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1995)
1973 ● Justin Jeffre → Vocals for American adult contemporary pop-rock boy band 98 Degrees, “Give Me Just One Night (Una Noche)” (#2, 2000)
1976 ● Daniel Powter → Canadian folk-pop singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Bad Day” (#1, 2005)
1982 ● Robert Edward “Bert” McCracken → Lead vocals and songwriter for indie rock/screamo punk quartet The Used, “Under Pressure” (#41, 2005)

Feb 26

1928 ● Antoine “Fats” Domino → Rock ‘n’ roll singer, pianist, bandleader and songwriter, best-selling black artist of the 50s starting with “Ain’t That A Shame” (#10, R&B #1, 1955) and 33 Top 40 hits through 1962
1930 ● Chic Hetti (Carl Cicchetti) → Vocals and piano for novelty pop/rock ‘n’ roll The Playmates, “Beep Beep” (#4, 1958) plus 4 other Top 40 hits
1932 ● Johnny Cash → The “Man in Black,” super-legendary traditional and outlaw country singer, songwriter and guitarist with dozens of top country hits plus “A Boy Named Sue” (#2, 1969), died from respiratory failure 9/12/2003
1943 ● Paul Cotton → Stalwart member, guitarist, songwriter and vocals for country-rock Poco, wrote “The Heart Of The Night” (#20, Adult Contemporary #5, 1979)
1945 ● Bob “The Bear” Hite → Harmonica and vocals for blues-rock/boogie-rock Canned Heat, “Going Up The Country” (#11, 1968), died 4/6/1981 from a heart attack
1945 ● Mitch Ryder (William Levise, Jr.) → Frontman and vocals for classic rock ‘n’ roll garage band The Detroit Wheels, “Devil With A Blue Dress On/Good Golly Miss Molly” (#4, 1966) and 25 albums as a solo artist since 1967
1947 ● Sandie Shaw (Sandra Goodrich) → Brit girl-group style pop singer, “(There’s) Always Something There To Remind Me” (#52, UK #1, 1967)
1950 ● Jonathan Cain → Keyboards for arena rock Journey, “Who’s Crying Now” (#4, 1981), mainstream pop-rock The Babys, “Everytime I Think Of You” (#13, 1979), then Bad English, “When I See You Smile” (#1, 1989)
1953 ● Michael Bolton (Bolotin) → Solo pop-rock singer, then lead vocals for heavy metal Blackjack, then Grammy-winning solo soft pop-rock balladeer, “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You” (#1, 1990) and five Top 10 albums
1958 ● Steve Grant → Singer for Brit synth-dance-pop trio Tight Fit, covered “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” (UK #1, 1982)
1960 ● Jaz Coleman → Vocals and keyboards for post-punk/gloom-industrial metal Killing Joke, “Follow The Leaders” (#25, 1981)
1961 ● John Jon (Jonathan Hellyer) → Founding member and keyboards for early-out gay synth-pop Bronski Beat, “Smalltown Boy” (#48, Dance/Pop #1, 1984)
1968 ● Tim Commerford → Bassist for Grammy-winning punk/hip hop/thrash metal Rage Against The Machine, “Guerrilla Radio” (Modern Rock #6, 1999), then alt metal Audioslave, “Doesn’t Remind Me” (Mainstream Rock #2, 2005)
1969 ● Timothy Brown → Bassist for 90s Brit guitar-pop The Boo Radleys, “Barney (…And Me)” (Alt Rock #30, 1994)
1971 ● Erykah Badu → Smooth R&B/neo-soul songwriter and vocalist, “On & On” (#12, Hot Dance #3, 1997)
1971 ● Martin Karl “Max Martin” Sandberg → Swedish music songwriter and producer for Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, Kelly Clarkson, *NSYNC and Pink
1979 ● Corinne Bailey Rae → Grammy-winning R&B/neo-soul songstress, “Your Love Is Mine” (Dance/Club #4, 2007)

Feb 27

1927 ● Guy Mitchell (Albert Cernick) → International 50s pop singing star with multiple hits, last was “Heartaches By The Number” (#1, 1959), died of cancer on 7/1/1999
1948 ● Eddie Gray → Guitarist for bubblegum-pop Tommy James & The Shondells, “Hanky Panky” (#1, 1966), later psych-pop, “Crimson And Clover” (#1, 1968)
1950 ● Robert Balderrama → Guitarist for garage rock ? and the Mysterians, “96 Tears” (#1, 1966)
1951 ● Steve Harley (Stephen Nice) → Frontman and lead singer for glam-rock Cockney Rebel, then solo, “Ballerina (Prima Donna)” (UK #51, 1983)
1954 ● Neil Schon → Guitarist for Latin-tinged rock Santana, “Everybody’s Everything” (#12, 1971), then lead guitar and frontman for arena rock Journey, “Who’s Crying Now” (#4, 1981), sessions and stints with Bad English and Hardline
1955 ● Garry Christian → Lead vocals for blue-eyed soul sibling trio The Christians, “When Fingers Point” (Dance/Club #29, 1988)
1957 ● Adrian Smith → Guitarist for Brit heavy metal Iron Maiden, “Flight Of Icarus” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1983)
1959 ● Johnny Van Zant → Lead vocals and frontman for his own band, then replaced his older, deceased brother Ronnie in the reformed Southern rock Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1987, issued solo “Brickyard Road” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1990), plays with older brother Donnie (formerly .38 Special) in hard Rock Van Zant
1960 ● Paul Humphreys → Keyboards and vocals for New Wave synth-pop Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, “If You Leave” (#4, 1986)
1963 ● Nasty Suicide (Jan Stenfors) → Guitarist for Finnish glam-punk-metal Hanoi Rocks, covered Creedence Clearwater Revival‘s “Up Around The Bend” (UK #61, 1984)
1964 ● Derek McKenzie → Scottish electronic psych/dance rock crossover band The Shamen, “Ebeneezer Goode” (UK #1, 1992), died 5/22/1991
1964 ● Ewen Vernal → Bassist for Scottish indie pop-rock Deacon Blue, “Real Gone Kid” (UK #8, 1988), now with folk-rock Capercaillie
1965 ● David Boulter → Keyboards for Brit folk-pop-soul Tindersticks, “Bathtime” (UK #38, 1997)
1971 ● Chilli (Rozonda Ocelean Thomas) → Vocals for R&B/urban soul-dance-pop girl trio TLC, “Creep” (#1, 1994)
1972 ● Jeremy Dean → Keyboards for indie power pop band Nine Days, “Absolutely (Story Of A Girl)” (#6, 2000)
1973 ● Peter Andre (Andrea) → Greek Cypriot, Australia-raised blue-eyed R&B/soul revivalist singer and former actor, “Gimme Little Sign” (Aussie #3, 1992), then urban dance-pop “I Feel You” (UK #1, 1995)
1981 ● Josh Groban → Adult-oriented pop and classical singer, “Believe” (Adult Contemporary #1, 2004), top selling US artist in 2007

Feb 28

1939 ● John Fahey → Steel string acoustic folk guitarist (Rolling Stone #35), Takoma Records owner, died after open heart surgery on 2/22/2001
1940 ● Joe South (Souter) → Country-pop singer and songwriter, “Games People Play” (#12, 1969), session guitarist for Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, Bob Dylan and Simon & Garfunkel, wrote Deep Purple‘s “Hush” (#4, 1968) and Lynn Anderson’s “(I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden” (Adult Contemporary #5, 1970)
1941 ● Marty Sanders → Vocals for clean cut pop-rock Jay & The Americans, “Cara Mia” (#4, 1965), plus nine other Top 30 hits
1942 ● Brian Jones → Founding member, first band leader and original guitarist for The Rolling Stones, “Paint It Black” (#1, 1966), left the band and drowned in his swimming pool on 7/3/1969 while under the influence of drugs and alcohol
1943 ● Barbara Acklin → R&B/Chicago soul vocalist and songwriter, “Love Makes A Woman” (#15, R&B #3, 1968), co-wrote “Have You Seen Her” for The Chi-Lites (#3, R&B #1, 1971) and MC Hammer (#4, 1990), died from pneumonia on 11/27/1998
1943 ● Donnie Iris (Dominic Ierace) → Guitarist, vocals and songwriter for pop-rock The Jaggerz, “The Rapper” (#2, 1970), then briefly with one hit wonder funk-pop Wild Cherry, “Play That Funky Music” (#1, 1976), then solo, “Ah! Leah!” (#29, 1981)
1945 ● Ronnie Rosman → Keyboards for bubblegum-pop Tommy James & The Shondells, “Hanky Panky” (#1, 1966) and psych-pop, “Crimson And Clover” (#1, 1968)
1952 ● Eddie “Kingfish” Manion → Saxophonist for New Jersey rock ‘n roll bar band Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes, “Talk To Me” (1978), then with Bruce Springsteen‘s Seeger Sessions Band
1957 ● Cindy Wilson → Frontgal and vocals for New Wave alt-dance-rock The B-52’s, “Love Shack” (#3, 1989)
1957 ● Ian Stanley → Keyboards for New Wave synth-pop Tears For Fears, “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” (#1, 1085)
1957 ● Phil Gould → Drummer for jazz-funk-pop fusion Level 42, “Lessons In Love” (#12, 1987)
1967 ● Marcus Lillington → Guitarist for Brit pop-rock Breathe, “Hands To Heaven” (#3, 1988)
1969 ● Pat Monahan → Lead vocals for Grammy-winning roots rock/folk-pop Train, “Drops Of Jupiter (Tell Me)”, (#5, 2001), solo and songwriting with Guy Chambers
1971 ● Nigel Godrich → Grammy-winning recording engineer and producer for Radiohead, Beck, U2, R.E.M. and others, plus lead singer with Thom Yorke‘s Atoms For Peace
1972 ● Danny McCormack → Bass and vocals for Brit hard/raunch rock The Wildhearts, “Sick Of Drugs” (UK #14, 1995)

Feb 29

1904 ● Jimmy Dorsey → Reed player and Swing era Big Band leader with brother Tommy and on his own with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, multiple Top 40 hits including his last, “So Rare” (#2, 1957), died from throat cancer on 6/12/1957
1916 ● Dinah Shore (Francis Rose Shore) → Immensely popular 1940s big band then 50s pop singer with 80 consecutive charting hits, including “Whatever Lola Wants” (#12, 1955), film actress and four decade TV music variety and talk show host, died from ovarian cancer on 2/24/1994
1940 ● Gretchen Christopher → Vocals in pop/blue-eyed soul/doo wop trio The Fleetwoods, “Come To Me Softly” (#1, 1959)
1944 ● David Briggs → Rock album producer known primarily for his work with Neil Young and Young‘s backing band Crazy Horse from the 60s to the 90s, produced many of Young‘s albums, including Tonight’s The Night (1975), also worked with Spirit, Nils Lofgren and others, died on 11/26/1995 from lung cancer
1972 ● Saul Williams → Spoken-word rapper known for his blend of poetry and hip-hop, “NiggyTardust” (2007)
1976 ● Ja Rule (Jeffrey Atkins) → Murder, Inc. label rapper, “Always On Time” (#1, 2002), actor and convicted felon

Mar 01

1927 ● Harry Belafonte (Belafonete) → The “King of Calypso,” entertainer, social activist, humanitarian and 50s pop and adult contemporary singer, “Banana Boat Song” (#5, 1956) plus five other Top 20 hits
1939 ● Warren Davis → Vocals for one hit wonder R&B/doo wop sextet The Monotones, “(Who Wrote) The Book Of Love” (#5, 1958)
1942 ● Jerry Fisher → Vocals for jazz-rock/pop-rock fusion band Blood, Sweat & Tears, “Spinning Wheel” (#2, 1969)
1944 ● Mike D’Abo → Singer, songwriter and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock Manfred Mann, “Do Wah Diddy Diddy” (#1, 1964), wrote The Foundations‘ “Build Me Up Buttercup” (#3, 1969) and Rod Stewart‘s “Handbags & Gladrags” (#42, 1972)
1944 ● Roger Daltrey → Lead singer for venerable hard rock The Who, “Who Are You” (#14, 1978) and solo, “After The Fire” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1985)
1946 ● Tony Ashton → Vocals and keyboards for art rock Ashton, Gardner & Dyke, “Resurrection Shuffle” (#40, UK #3, 1971)
1947 ● Burning Spear (Winston Rodney) → Two-time Grammy-winning roots-reggae singer, songwriter, Rastafarian preacher and bandleader with eleven Top 20 charting world and reggae music albums
1957 ● Jon Carroll → Singer in one hit wonder folk-pop Starland Vocal Band, “Afternoon Delight” (1976)
1958 ● Nik Kershaw → Singer, songwriter, jazz-funk guitarist and 80s teen idol, “Wouldn’t It Be Good” (#46, UK #4, 1984), producer
1962 ● Bill Leen → Bassist and co-founder of power-pop Gin Blossoms, “Found Out About You” (Modern Rock #1, 1994)
1962 ● Peter Stephenson → Keyboards in Scottish electronic psych/dance rock crossover band The Shamen, “Ebeneezer Goode” (UK #1, 1992), died 5/22/1991
1963 ● Christina Bergmark → Keyboards and vocals for Swedish alt rock The Wannadies, “You And Me Song” (UK #18, 1996)
1963 ● Rob Affuso → Drummer for New Jersey-based hair metal/pop-metal Skid Row, “I Remember You” (#6, 1989)
1969 ● Davydd Leuan → Drummer for Welsh electro-psych rock Super Furry Animals, “Northern Lites” (UK #11, 1999)
1973 ● Ryan Peake → Rhythm guitar and vocals for Canadian post-grunge hard rock Nickelback, “How You Remind Me” (#1, 2001)
1987 ● Kesha Rose Sebert → Dance-pop rapper with Flo Rida, “Right Round”, (#1, 2009) and solo, “Tik Tok” (#1, 2010)
1994 ● Justin Bieber → Canadian teen idol pop singer and the first artist to have seven songs from a debut album chart on the Billboard Hot 100, including “Baby” (#5, 2010)

Mar 02

1938 ● Lawrence Payton → Six decade R&B/soul vocal quartet The Four Tops, “Reach Out (I’ll Be There)” (#1, 1966), died 6/20/1997
1941 ● Keith Potger → Founding member, guitar and vocals for Aussie folk-sunshine pop The Seekers, “Georgy Girl” (#2, 1967) and The New Seekers, “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing” (#7, 1972)
1942 ● Lou Reed (Lewis Allen Rabinowitz) → Founding member, singer, songwriter and guitarist for proto-punk The Velvet Underground, “White Light, White Heat” (1968), then 4 decade solo career, “Walk On The Wild Side” (#16, 1973)
1943 ● Tony Meehan → Drummer for instrumental pop-rock The Shadows, “Apache” (Worldwide #1, 1960), died after an accidental fall at home in London on 11/28/2005
1948 ● Larry Carlton → Grammy-winning jazz-rock fusion guitarist with The Crusaders (1971-76), session work for Steely Dan, Billy Joel, Michael Jackson and others, composed the theme to the TV show Hill Street Blues and recorded several acclaimed solo albums
1948 ● Rory Gallagher → Hugely underrated Irish blues-rock guitarist, songwriter and vocalist with eleven solo studio albums plus sessions work, died from complications of a liver transplant on 6/14/1995
1950 ● Karen Carpenter → Vocals and drums for pop sibling act The Carpenters, three US #1 hits including “Close To You” (#1, 1970), died from anorexia nervosa on 2/4/1983
1955 ● Dale Bozzio (Consalvi) → Former Playboy bunny and lead singer for New Wave pop-rock Missing Persons, “Walking In L.A.” (Mainstream Rock #12, 1983)
1955 ● Jay Osmond → Vocals for family-oriented light pop-rock The Osmonds, ten US Top 40 singles including “One Bad Apple” (#1, 1971)
1956 ● John Cowsill → Drums 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, member of 80s one hit wonder pop-rock Tommy Tutone (“867-5309/Jenny,” #4, 1982), currently touring with The Beach Boys
1956 ● Mark Evans → Original bassist for power rock AC/DC, “Let There Be Rock” (#154, 1977), quit in 1977 after becoming tired of tour schedule
1962 ● Jon Bon Jovi (John Francis Bongiovi, Jr.) → Vocals and frontman for pop metal/hard rock Bon Jovi, “Living On A Prayer” (#1, 1987), then solo, “Blaze Of Glory” (#1, 1990), then reformed Bon Jovi, “Always” (#4, 1994) and moved into country-Heartland rock, “Who Says You Can’t Go Home” (Adult Top 40 #6, 2006)
1967 ● Dennis Seaton → Lead vocals for ska/reggae band Musical Youth, “Pass The Dutchie” (#10, 1982)
1977 ● Chris Martin → Guitar, vocals and piano for Brit-pop/anthem rock Coldplay, “Speed Of Sound” (#8, 2005)
1985 ● Luke Pritchard → Lead vocalist and guitarist with Brit-pop-rock The Kooks, “Always Where I Need To Be” (Alt Rock #22, 2008)

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This Week’s Birthdays (January 13 – 19)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Jan 13

1930 ● Bobby Lester → Lead vocals and founding member of important 50s R&B/doo wop The Moonglows, “Sincerely” (R&B #1, 1955)
1948 ● John Lees → Founder, guitarist and songwriter for underappreciated Brit prog-folk-rock Barclay James Harvest, “Mockingbird” (1971), solo, continues with incarnations of the band in the 00s
1954 ● Trevor Rabin → South African born guitarist and frontman for power pop Rabbitt, then with seminal prog-rock band Yes, “Owner Of A Lonely Heart” (#1, 1983), left in 1995 to score movie soundtracks for over three dozen mainstream films
1955 ● Fred White → Drummer for R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975)
1957 ● Don Snow → Keyboards for New Wave synth-pop Squeeze, “Tempted” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1981)
1957 ● Jim Parris → Founding member and bassist for Brit jazz-pop-rock Carmel, “Bad Day” (UK #15, 1983)
1961 ● Graham “Suggs” McPherson → Vocals for Brit punk/ska revival Madness, “Our House” (#7, 1982) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles, solo, “I’m Only Sleeping” (UK #7, 1995)
1961 ● Wayne Coyne → Guitar and vocals for neo-psych alt rock The Flaming Lips, “She Don’t Use Jelly” (#55, 1995)
1962 ● Tony Rebel (Patrick Barrett) → Jamaican roots reggae/dancehall singer, songwriter and DJ with over 10 solo albums and several singles, founder and CEO of Flames Records and organizer of the annual Rebel Salute music festival
1963 ● Tim Kelly → Guitarist, singer and songwriter for pop-glam metal Slaughter, “Fly To The Angels” (#19, 1990), died in a car crash on 2/5/1998
1964 ● David McCluskey → Drummer for Scottish jangle-pop-rock The Bluebells, “Young At Heart” (UK #1, 1983)
1970 ● Zach de la Rocha → Vocals for Grammy-winning punk/hip hop/thrash metal Rage Against The Machine, “Guerrilla Radio” (Modern Rock #6, 1999)
1971 ● Lee Agnew → Scottish drummer and son of Pete Agnew, co-founder and bassist for hard rock Nazereth, “Love Hurts” (#8, 1976), joined the band in 1999 to replace deceased drummer Darrell Sweet

Jan 14

1936 ● Clarence Carter → Blind from birth, gritty Muscle Shoals R&B/soul singer and guitarist, “Slip Away” (#6, 1968) and the Grammy-winning “Patches” (#4, 1970) plus five other R&B Top 10 hits
1937 ● Billie Jo Spears → Female bluesy-voiced trad-country balladeer, “Blanket On The Ground” (Country #1, 1975)
1938 ● Allen Toussaint → Highly influential New Orleans R&B songwriter, performer and producer, worked with Joe Cocker, The Band, Neville Brothers, Paul Simon and others
1938 ● John Allan “Jack” Jones → Grammy-winning jazz and contemporary-pop singer, “Wives And Lovers” (#14, 1963)
1948 ● Joseph Henry “T-Bone” Burnett → Rootsy singer, songwriter, session guitarist and producer for Roy Orbison, Elvis Costello, BoDeans, Alison Krauss and Robert Plant, and many others
1948 ● Tim Harris → Drummer in Brit R&B/soul-pop The Foundations, “Baby Now That I’ve Found You” (#11, 1967)
1949 ● Lamar Williams → Bassist for Southern rock giants The Allman Brothers Band, joining after the death of original bassist Berry Oakley in 1972, left in 1976 to co-found jazz-rock fusion Sea Level, “That’s Your Secret” (#50, 1978), died of lung cancer on 1/21/1983
1956 ● Bob Bradbury → Vocals for Brit teenage glam rockers Hello, “Tell Him” (UK #6, 1975)
1959 ● Chas Smash (Cathal Smyth aka Carl Smyth) → Horns for Brit punk/ska revival Madness, “Our House” (#7, 1982) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles
1959 ● Geoff Tate → Vocals for progressive pop-metal Queensrÿche, “Silent Lucidity” (#9, 1991)
1961 ● Mike Tramp → Vocals for Danish-American heavy/hair metal White Lion, “When The Children Cry” (#3, 1987)
1962 ● Patricia Morrison → Heavy metal bassist for The Gun Club, goth-metal The Sisters of Mercy, “Temple Of Love” (UK #3, 1992) and reformed punk-rock The Damned
1965 ● Slick Rick (Richard Walters) → British-American “Golden Age” rapper, “Children’s Story” (Rap #2, 1989)
1967 ● Steve Bowman → Founding member and first drummer for alt-rock Counting Crows, “Mr. Jones” (Modern Rock #2, 1994), left in 1994 to join Third Eye Blind and later John Wesley Harding and Luce
1967 ● Zakk Wylde (Jeffrey Phillip Wiedlant) → Long-time friend of and guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne‘s band, left in 1994 to form power trio Pride & Glory, then Black Label Society, “Stillborn” (Mainstream Rock #20, 2003)
1968 ● LL Cool J (James Todd Smith) → Prolific and long-lived East Coast rap-pop artist, “Hey Lover” (#3, 1995) and 12 other Top 40 and nine Rap Top 10 hits
1969 ● Dave Grohl → Vocals and drummer for grunge rock Nirvana, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (#6, 1992), then founded hard rock Foo Fighters, “All My Life” (#5, 1995)
1974 ● Denise Van Outen → TV host, stage actress and adult contemporary pop singer, “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You” (UK #23, 2002), a duet with Andy Williams who was 45 years her senior
1981 ● Pitbull (Armando Christian Perez) → Cuban-American Southern rap (crunk) artist, “I Know You Want Me” (#2, 2009)
1982 ● Anthony Caleb Followill → Lead vocals and rhythm guitar for Southern blues-indie rock Kings Of Leon, “Sex On Fire” (Modern Rock #1, 2008)
1989 ● Frankie Sandford → Brit R&B and pop singer, songwriter, occasional actress and member of pre-fab teen dance-pop S Club 8, “Fool No More” (UK #4, 2003), left in 2007 to join electro-pop girl-group The Saturdays, “Missing You” (UK #3, 2010)

Jan 15

1893 ● Ivor Novello (David Ivor Davies) → Welsh composer, singer, stage and screen actor and popular entertainer, namesake for annual British music awards, died 3/6/51
1909 ● Gene Krupa → Renowned jazz and big band drummer, composer, bandleader, drum kit developer, mentor and influencer, died from leukemia and heart failure 10/16/1973
1929 ● Earl Hooker → Non-singing, commercially less successful but heralded blues slide guitar virtuoso, both as a sideman and on numerous instrumental albums under his own name, died from tuberculosis on 4/21/1970
1941 ● Captain Beefheart (Don Glen Vliet, later Don van Vliet) → Innovative, offbeat, satirical, visionary and influential art rock multi-instrumentalist, composer, frontman for The Magic Band and solo, album Trout Mask Replica (1969), died 12/17/2010 of complications from multiple sclerosis
1942 ● Edward “Sonny” Bivins → Vocals for R&B/doo wop then sweet soul The Manhattans, “Kiss And Say Goodbye” (#1, 1976)
1945 ● Joan Marie Johnson → Vocals for 60s R&B/pop girl-group The Dixie Cups, “Chapel Of Love” (#1, 1964)
1947 ● Pete Waterman → Member of the multi-hit UK songwriting and production trio Stock-Aitken-Waterman (SAW), wrote “Respectable” (#1 for Rick Astley, 1987)
1948 ● Ronnie Van Zant → Lead singer and primary lyricist for raunchy Southern rock Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Sweet Home Alabama” (#8, 1974), died in a plane crash along with other bandmembers on 10/20/1977
1951 ● Martha Davis → Vocalist and frontwoman for L.A.-based New Wave smooth pop-rock The Motels, “Only The Lonely” (#9, 1982)
1952 ● Melvyn Gale → Strings for pop-rock Electric Light Orchestra, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (#4, 1979) and 26 other Top 40 hits
1953 ● Boris Blank → Founding member, composer and multi-instrumentalist for Swiss electronic dance-pop Yello, “Oh Yeah” (#51, 1987)
1953 ● Douglas Elwin “Duke” Erickson → Founding member and guitarist for Scottish-American alt rock Garbage, “Stupid Girl” (Dance/Club #5, 1996)
1959 ● Peter Trewavas → Bassist and backing vocals for Brit prog-rock revival group Marillion, “Kayleigh” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1985)
1961 ● Stephen Damian O’Neill → Guitarist for Irish punk/New Wave pop-rock The Undertones, “My Perfect Cousin” (UK #9, 1980), co-founded hard/alt rock That Petrol Emotion, “Groove Check” (Dance/Club #12, 1989)
1965 ● Adam Jones → Grammy-winning Welsh-American songwriter and guitarist (Rolling Stone #75) for Tool, “Schism” (Mainstream Rock #2, 2001), visual artist
1967 ● Lisa Velez → Vocals and frontwoman for 80s dance-pop/proto-hip hop Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam, “Head To Toe” (#1, 1987)
1974 ● Edith Bowman → Scottish music critic, TV hostess and BBC 1 weekend morning radio DJ
1975 ● Belinda Chapple → Singer in pre-fab Aussie all-girl pop vocal quintet Bardot, “Poison” (Aus. #1, 2000)

Jan 16

1934 ● Bob Bogle → Founding member and lead guitarist for seminal rock ‘n roll instrumental group The Ventures, “Walk – Don’t Run” (#2, 1960), died from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma on 6/14/2009
1939 ● Ramon “Ray” Phillips → Lead vocals and bass for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964)
1942 ● Barbara Lynn (Ozen) → Southern R&B guitarist, bandleader, singer and solo artist, “You’ll Lose A Good Thing” (#8, 1962)
1942 ● William Francis → Keyboards for AM pop-rock Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, “Sylvia’s Mother” (#5, 1972) plus nine other Top 40 hits
1943 ● Ronnie Milsap → Six-time Grammy-winning blind country-pop 70s/80s superstar singer and pianist, “Any Day Now” (#14, Country #1, 1982) plus 35 other Country #1 hits
1944 ● Jim Stafford → Country-pop comic singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, “Spiders & Snakes” (#3, 1974) and five other Top 40 hits, also a TV and radio entertainer
1944 ● Katherine Anderson Schaffner → Vocals for Motown pop-soul girl group The Marvelettes, “Please Mr. Postman” (#1, 1961) and nine other Top 40 singles
1948 ● John Carpenter → Film score composer, producer, director and screenwriter, including the soundtrack to his film Halloween (1978)
1950 ● Kenji “Damo” Suzuki → Japanese lead vocalist for pioneer Kraut rock group Can, now avant garde/improv group Damo Suzuki’s Network
1957 ● Yan Style (Ian Stile) → Guitarist for glam pop-rock Kenny, “The Bump” (UK #3, 1975)
1959 ● Sade (Helen Folasade Adu) → Silky-smooth R&B/quiet storm singer, “Smooth Operator” (#5, 1984)
1962 ● Paul Webb → Bassist for Brit New Romantic synth-pop Talk Talk, “It’s My Life” (#31, 1984)
1966 ● Maxine Jones → Vocals in Grammy-winning female club-dance group En Vogue, “Hold On” (#2, 1990)
1970 ● Brendan O’Hare → Drummer for Scot pre-grunge, then power pop Teenage Fanclub, “Star Sign” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1991), now solo
1976 ● Stuart Fletcher → Bassist for Britpop/indie rock The Seahorses, “Love Is The Law” (UK #3, 1997)
1979 ● Aaliyah Dana Haughton → Actress, model and teen R&B/club-dance star, “Try Again” (#1, 2000), killed in a plane crash in the Bahamas on 8/25/2001
1980 ● Luke Alex Broughton → Nephew and current bandmate of Brit blues then prog-rock Edgar Broughton Band, “Apache Dropout” (UK #33, 1970)
1981 ● Nick Valensi → Guitarist for early 00s garage rock revival The Strokes, “Juicebox” (Modern Rock #9, 2005)
1982 ● Samuel Dylan Murray Preston → Lead singer and guitarist in post-punk/indie pop-rock The Ordinary Boys, “Boys Will Be Boys” (UK ##, 2006)

Jan 17

1927 ● Eartha Kitt → Slinky actress, 40s/50s cabaret star and multi-decade throaty-purr singer, “Where Is My Man” (Dance/Club #7, 1983), died from colon cancer on 12/25/2008
1943 ● Chris Montez (Ezekiel Christopher Montanez) → One hit wonder rock ‘n roll singer, “Let’s Dance” (#4, 1962), then MOR-pop balladeer, “Call Me” (Easy Listening #2, 1966)
1944 ● Francoise Hardy → French MOR-pop singer, songwriter and actress, “All Over The World” (UK #16, 1965)
1945 ● William “Poogie” Hart → Vocals in R&B/Philly soul The Delfonics, “La-La Means I Love You” (#4, 1968), formed The Three Tenors of Soul in mid-00s
1948 ● Michael Kevin “Mick” Taylor → Guitarist for John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, joined The Rolling Stones (“Brown Sugar”, #1, 1971) in 1969, left in 1974, session work with Jack Bruce, Bob Dylan, Mike Oldfield and Ron Wood
1953 ● Sheila Hutchinson → Vocals in R&B/soul-gospel sister trio The Emotions, “Best Of My Love” (#1, 1977)
1954 ● Cheryl Bentyne → Vocals in Grammy-winning jazz-pop fusion vocal group Manhattan Transfer, “Boy From New York City” (#7, 1981)
1955 ● Steve Earle → Oft-covered, rough-edged country-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Guitar Town” (Mainstream Rock #20, 1989)
1956 ● Paul Young → Manchesterian R&B/blue-eyed soul-pop interpretive singer, “Everytime You Go Away” (#1, 1985)
1958 ● Jeremy “Jez” Strode → Drummer for one hit wonder New Wave light synth-bubblegum-pop Kajagoogoo, “Too Shy” (#5, 1983), independent music equipment lessor
1959 ● Susanna Hoffs → Guitar and vocals for New Wave girl-group The Bangles, “Walk Like An Egyptian” (#1, 1986)
1960 ● John Crawford → Bass and keyboards for New Wave synth-pop Berlin, “Take My Breath Away” (#1, 1986)
1961 ● Dave Collard → Keyboards for Brit dance-pop-rock Jo Boxers, “Boxer Beat” (UK #3, 1983)
1964 ● Andy Rourke → Bassist for definitive Brit indie rock The Smiths, “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” (UK #10, 1984)
1966 ● Shabba Ranks → Grammy-winning R&B/dance hall reggae and hip hop singer, “Mr. Loverman” (Dance #2, Hot 100 #40, 1992)
1971 ● Jon Wysocki → Drummer for post-grunge/alt metal Staind, “It’s Been A While” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2001)
1971 ● Kid Rock (Robert James Ritchie) → White-trash rap-rock superstar, “Picture” (#4, 2003) and ten other Mainstream Rock Top 40 hits
1972 ● Aqualung (Matt Hales) → Contemporary/indie pop singer and songwriter, “Brighter Than Sunshine” (Adult Top 40 #32, UK #37, 2006)
1978 ● Ricky Wilson → Vocals for Britpop/indie rock Kaiser Chiefs, “Ruby” (UK #1, 2007)
1982 ● Alex Varkatzas → Vocals and lyrics for rap-metal Atreyu, “Ex’s And Oh’s” (Mainstream Rock #27, 2006)
1984 ● Calvin Harris (Adam Richard Wiles) → Scottish electropop singer and songwriter, “The Girls” (UK ##, 2007), producer for Kylie Minogue and Dizzee Rascal

Jan 18

1941 ● Bobby Goldsboro → Country-pop singer and songwriter, “Honey” (#1, 1968), children’s TV producer, The Swamp Critters of the Lost Lagoon (1995)
1941 ● David Ruffin → Vocals for R&B giants The Temptations, “My Girl” (#1, 1965) and Grammy-winning “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” (#1, 1972), died from drug overdose 6/1/1991
1943 ● Dave Greenslade → Keyboards and vocals for jazz-blues-rock fusion Colosseum, (album Valentyne Suite, 1969), then founded prog-rock Greenslade, solo
1944 ● “Legs” Larry Smith → Drummer for Brit comedy-rock Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, “I’m The Urban Spaceman” (UK #5, 1968)
1953 ● Brett Hudson (Salerno) → Member of sibling musical trio The Hudson Brothers, “So You Are A Star” (#21, 1974), TV producer and script writer
1954 ● Tom Bailey → Frontman, songwriter, vocals and keyboards for New Wave synth-pop Thompson Twins, “Hold Me Now” (#3, 1983), then Babble
1959 ● Bob Rosenberg → Founder and leader of dance-pop/mix music Will To Power, “Baby I Love Your Way/Freebird” (#1, 1988)
1962 ● Jeremy Healey → Guitar for quirky Brit New Wave synth-pop Haysi Fantayzee, “John Wayne Is Big Leggy” (UK #11, 1982)
1970 ● DJ Quik (David Martin Blake) → Premier West Coast DJ and rapper, “Tonite” (Hot Rap #3, Hot 100 #49, 1991), producer for Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Snoop Dogg and many others
1971 ● Jonathan Davis → Vocals for hard rock/”nu metal” Korn, “Here To Stay” (Mainstream #4, 2002)
1973 ● Crispian “Dodge” Mills (Crispian Boulting) → Frontman, guitar and vocals for post-Britpop psych/mystic rock Kula Shaker, “Hush” (Mainstream Rock #19, 1997)
1973 ● Luther Dickinson → Founder (with brother Cody Dickinson), lead vocals and guitar for Grammy-winning Southern blues/rock North Mississippi Allstars, now lead guitar for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Good Morning Captain” (Mainstream Rock #30, 2009)
1974 ● Christian Burns → Guitar and vocals for Brit teen pop-rock BBMak, “Back Here” (#8, 2000)
1977 ● Richard Archer → Singer and guitarist for indie rock Hard-Fi, “Cash Machine” (Modern Rock #15, 2005)
1980 ● Estelle Swaray → Grammy-winning Brit R&B/hip-hop singer, songwriter and producer, “American Boy” featuring Kanye West (#9, 2008)
1982 ● Quinn Allman → Guitarist in screamo-tinged, post-hardcore punk The Used, “Under Pressure” (#48, 2005)
1983 ● Samantha Mumba → Irish singer, songwriter and actress, “Gotta Tell You” (#4, 2000)

Jan 19

1926 ● Frederick James “Bob” Wooler → Resident DJ, booking agent and later compère at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, booked The Beatles there in 1961, declined to manage them but introduced them to Brian Epstein, died after a long illness on 2/8/2002
1935 ● Johnny “The Wild One” O’Keefe → Canadian-born singer, became “Australia’s King of Rock ‘n’ Roll” with dozens of Top 10 hits, including “She’s My Baby” (Australia #1, 1960), died of prescription drug overdose and subsequent heart attack on 10/6/1978
1939 ● Phil Everly → Singer with older brother Don in folk-rock duo The Everly Brothers, “All I Have To Do Is Dream” (#1, 1958) plus more than 25 other Top 40 hits
1942 ● Michael Crawford (Dumble-Smith) → Actor and singer best known for lead roll in The Phantom Of The Opera, “The Music Of The Night” (Brit Top 10, 1987)
1943 ● Janis Lynn Joplin → Vocals and frontwoman for psych-rock Big Brother & The Holding Company, then solo, “Me And Bobby McGee” (#1, 1971), died form accidental heroin overdose on 10/4/1970
1944 ● Lawrence “Laurie” London → Brit folk-pop 13-year-old one hit wonder, “He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands” (#1, 1958)
1944 ● Michelle Ann Marie “Shelley” Fabares → TV actress (The Donna Reed Show, 1958-63, Coach, 1989-97), film star (Girl Happy with Elvis Presley, 1965) and one hit wonder pop singer, “Johnny Angel” (#1, 1962)
1946 ● Dolly Parton → Five-time Grammy-winning country-pop superstar singer, songwriter, actress, TV host and business entrepreneur, “Nine To Five” (#1, 1981), wrote “I Will Always Love You” for herself (Country #1, 1974) and Whitney Houston (#1, 1992)
1947 ● Rod Evans → Early lead vocals for hard rock/prog rock Deep Purple, sang “Hush” (#4, 1968)
1948 ● Harvey Hinsley → Guitarist for Brit mixed race R&B/soul-funk-disco Hot Chocolate, “You Sexy Thing” (#3, 1976) and 27 other UK Top 40 hits, including one in every year from 1970 to 1984
1949 ● Robert Palmer → Underrated rock singer, songwriter, guitarist and bandleader with country-blues-rock Vinegar Joe, then supergroup Power Station, “Some Like It Hot” (#6, 1985) and solo, “Addicted to Love” (#1, 1986)
1952 ● Dewey Bunnell → Brit-born guitarist and backing singer for folk-pop trio America, “A Horse With No Name” (#1, 1972), continues to tour and release albums with America bandmate Gerry Beckley in the 10s
1952 ● Eric Leeds → Jazz/funk session saxophonist and flutist, worked with Prince on nine albums as a member of his backing band The Family (now fDeluxe), solo
1953 ● Clive Edwards → Session or full member drummer for numerous hard rock bands, including Medicine Head, UFO, Pat Travers, Wirehead and others
1953 ● Michael Boddicker → Film score composer and electronic music sessionman, played synthesizer on Michael Jackson albums Thriller, Bad and Dangerous
1955 ● Tony Mansfield → Founding member, singer and guitarist for underrated New Wave electronic synth-pop New Musik, “Living By Numbers” (UK #13, 1980), then producer for Naked Eyes, A-Ha, The B-52’s, others
1957 ● Mickey Virtue → Keyboards for multiracial reggae-pop UB40, “Red Red Wine” (#1, 1988) and over 30 other Top 40 hits
1963 ● Caron Wheeler → Vocals for R&B/soul-dance-disco-hip hop Soul II Soul, “Back To Life” (#4, 1989 )
1969 ● Trey Lorenz (Lloyd Lorenz Smith) → Back-up singer for Mariah Carey, duet “I’ll Be There” (#1, 1992), then solo, “Someone To Hold” (#19, 1992)
1971 ● John Wozniak → Guitar and vocals for post-grunge/indie rock Marcy Playground, “Sex And Candy” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1997)
1978 ● John Parker → Double bass, human beatbox and vocals for Brit folk-rock-hip hop one hit wonder Nizlopi, “JCB Song” (UK #1, 2005)

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This Week’s Birthdays (December 23 – 29)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Dec 23

1935 ● Johnny Kidd (Frederick Heath) → Pre-Beatles top Brit rock ‘n roll singer and frontman for Johnny Kidd & The Pirates, “Shakin’ All Over” (UK #1, 1960), died in a car crash on 10/7/1966
1935 ● Little Esther Phillips (Esther Mae Jones) → Versatile R&B/soul-pop-country-jazz-blues singer, “Release Me” (#8, R&B #1, 1962) and seven other R&B Top 40 hits, died from alcohol-related liver and kidney failure on 8/7/1984
1940 ● Eugene Record → Vocals for smooth R&B/Chicago soul The Chi-Lites, “Have You Seen Her?” (#3, 1971), died of cancer on 7/22/2005
1940 ● Jorma Kaukonen → Guitarist for 60s psych-rock Jefferson Airplane, “Somebody To Love” (#5, 1967), then folk-rock Hot Tuna, still touring and recording in 2011
1941 ● Tim Hardin → Folk singer-songwriter, wrote and recorded the oft-covered classic “Reason To Believe” (1965), died of a heroin overdose on 12/29/1980
1943 ● Harry Shearer → Actor who portrayed bassist Derek Smalls in the “mock-rock” parody band Spinal Tap from the movie This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
1945 ● Ron Bushy → Drummer for psych rock Iron Butterfly, “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” (#30, 1970)
1946 ● Luther Grosvenor (aka Ariel Bender) → Guitarist for Brit blues-rock Spooky Tooth, then early glam-rockers Mott The Hoople, “All The Young Dudes” (#37, 1972)
1946 ● Robbie Dupree (Robert Dupuis) → Light pop-rock one hit wonder vocalist, “Steal Away” (#6, 1980)
1949 ● Robert Steven “Adrian” Belew → Session and touring guitarist and singer for Frank Zappa, David Bowie, Talking Heads and King Crimson, with whom he records and tours in the 00s, solo
1951 ● Johnny Contardo → Vocals for rock ‘n roll revival “greaser” group Sha Na Na
1958 ● Dave Murray → Guitarist for Brit heavy metal Iron Maiden, “Flight Of Icarus” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1983)
1958 ● Victoria Williams → Idiosyncratic country-folk singer and songwriter, “Crazy Mary” (1994), career limited by multiple sclerosis, subject of the tribute/benefit album Sweet Relief (1993) featuring Pearl Jam, Lou Reed, Soul Asylum, Vanessa Williams and others
1960 ● Will Sinnott → Bassist in Scottish electronic psych/dance rock crossover band The Shamen, “Ebeneezer Goode” (UK #1, 1992), drowned while swimming in the Canary Islands on 5/22/1991
1964 ● Eddie Vedder (Edward Louis Severson III) → Lead vocals and guitars for post-grunge/alt rock kings Pearl Jam, “Last Kiss” (#2, 1999), solo
1966 ● Bobby Schayer → Drummer for hardcore punk Bad Religion, “Infected” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1995) from 1991 to 2001, resigned from the band after suffering a shoulder injury which left him unable to drum professionally
1974 ● Montsho Eshe → Vocals for Grammy-winning, progressive Afrocentric rap, funk-soul-blues-hip-hop group Arrested Development, “Mr. Wendal” (#6, 1992)
1975 ● Katie Underwood → Singer in pre-fab Aussie all-girl pop vocal quintet Bardot, “Poison” (Aus. #1, 2000)
1985 ● Harry Judd → Drummer for Brit pop-rock boy band McFly, “All About You” (UK #1, 2005)

Dec 24

1920 ● Dave Bartholomew → Prominent and expansive New Orleans R&B producer, arranger, composer, with Fats Domino co-wrote “Ain’t That A Shame” (#10, 1955)
1924 ● Lee Dorsey → R&B/soul-pop singer, “Working In The Cole Mine” (#8, 1966), died from emphysema on 12/1/1986
1944 ● Mike Curb → Musician, producer, record label executive with MGM, Bizarre and Curb records, former Lt. Governor of California, NASCAR racing team owner
1945 ● Lemmy (Ian Frasier Kilminster) → Bass and vocals for space rock pioneers Hawkwind, “Silver Machine” (1972), founded punk-metal Motörhead, “Ace Of Spades” (UK #15, 1980)
1946 ● Jan Akkerman → Founding member and guitarist for Dutch prog rock band Focus, “Hocus Pocus” (#9, 1971), solo, music journalist
1957 ● Ian Burden → Keyboards for late-70s synth-pop pioneers The Human League, “Don’t You Want Me” (#1, 1981)
1963 ● Mary Ramsey → Vocals in folk-pop John & Mary, then joined 10,000 Maniacs as lead vocalist in 1994 after Natalie Merchant‘s departure, “More Than This” (#25, 1997)
1968 ● Doyle Bramhall II → Guitarist and songwriter in Texas blues-rock The Arc Angels and Smokestack, played second guitar for Eric Clapton‘s band from 2004 to 2009, solo
1971 ● Ricky Martin (Enrique Martin Morales) → Puerto Rican teen-pop and later adult-pop superstar singer, “Livin’ La Vida Loca” (#1, 1999), TV actor in daytime soap opera General Hospital
1975 ● Joseph Washbourne → Keyboards and vocals for alt pub rock/white soul Toploader, covered “Dancing In The Moonlight” (UK Top 10, 2000)

Dec 25

1907 ● Cabell “Cab” Calloway III → Popular jazz and scat singer, pianist, songwriter and bandleader, “Minnie The Moocher” (1931 and R&B #91, 1978), continued to perform up to his death following a stroke on 11/18/1994
1929 ● Chris Kenner → New Orleans R&B and early rock ‘n roll singer and songwriter, “I Like It Like That” (#2, 1961), his “Land Of A Thousand Dances” was covered by Wilson Pickett, Patti Smith and others, died from a heart attack on 1/25/1976
1929 ● William Franklin “Billy” Horton → Lead singer for R&B/doo wop vocal quartet The Silhouettes, “Get A Job” (#1, 1958)
1937 ● O’Kelly Isley, Jr. → Vocals for six-decade, multi-generation R&B/soul family group The Isley Brothers, “That Lady, Pts. 1-2” (#6, 1973), died on 3/31/1986 following as heart attack
1939 ● Bob James → Jazz-pop crossover keyboardist, composer, arranger and bandleader, “Feel Like Making Love” (#88, 1974) and two Grammy-winning albums, One On One (1980) and Double Vision (1986)
1940 ● Pete Brown → Poet and co-lyricist for blues-rock Cream, co-wrote “I Feel Free” (1966) and “White Room” (#6, 1968) with Jack Bruce and “Sunshine Of Your Love” (#5, 1968) with Bruce and Eric Clapton
1940 ● Phil Spector → Musician, songwriter, record producer and originator of the “Wall of Sound” recording technique, pioneer of 60s girl groups and former husband of Ronnie Bennett Spector of The Ronettes, “Be My Baby” (#2, 1963)
1943 ● Trevor Lucas → Guitarist and vocalist with renowned Brit folk-rock Fairport Convention, “Si Tu Dos Partir” (UK #21, 1969) and Fotheringay, producer for Al Stewart, The Strawbs and others, died of a heart attack on 2/4/1989
1944 ● Henry “The Sunflower” Vestine → Guitarist for folk-blues-rock Canned Heat, “”Let’s Work Together” (1970) and Frank Zappa-led satirical rock group The Mothers Of Invention, “Brown Shoes Don’t Make It” (1967)
1944 ● Kenny Everett (Maurice James Cole) → BBC Radio DJ, Thames Television host, comedian and musician, “Snot Rap” (1983), died from an AIDS-related illness on 4/4/1995
1945 ● David Noel Redding → Bassist for psych-rock Jimi Hendrix Experience, “Purple Haze” (US #65, UK #3, 1967), solo, died from complications of cirrhosis of the liver on 5/11/2003
1946 ● Jimmy Buffett → Country-folk-pop-rock singer, songwriter, perpetual beach bum and chief Parrothead, “Margaritaville” (#8, 1977)
1948 ● Barbara Mandrell → Country singer, songwriter and three-time CMA Entertainer of the Year, “Sleeping Single In A Double Bed” (Country #1, 1977)
1948 ● Merry Clayton → Soul and gospel touring and session singer, recorded with Ray Charles, Elvis Presley, Neil Young and others, duet with Mick Jagger on The Rolling Stones‘ “Gimme Shelter”, solo
1954 ● Annie Lennox → Vocals for New Wave pop-rock The Tourists, “I Only Want To Be With You” (#83, 1980), co-founder and one-half the synth-pop duo Eurythmics, “Sweet Dreams” (#1, 1983), Grammy-winning solo career, “Walking On Broken Glass” (#14, 1992) and three other Top 40 hits
1954 ● Robin Campbell → Guitar and vocals for multiracial reggae-pop UB40, “Red Red Wine” (#1, 1988) and over 30 other Top 40 hits
1957 ● Shane MacGowan → Guitar and vocals for Irish folk-punk-rock The Pogues, “Tuesday Morning” (Rock #11, 1993)
1958 ● Alannah Myles → Sultry, smoky and sensual Canadian pop singer and songwriter, “Black Velvet” (#1, 1990)
1964 ● Bob Stanley → Guitars and songwriter for indie dance-pop Saint Etienne, “Nothing Can Stop Us” (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1971 ● Noel Hogan → Guitarist for Irish jangle/dream pop-rock The Cranberries, “Linger” (#8, 1993)
1972 ● Dido (Armstrong) → Electro-dance-pop singer and songwriter, “Thank You” (#3, 2001)
1972 ● Josh Freese → Drummer for industrial rock Nine Inch Nails, “The Day The World Went Away” (#17, 1999), also with The Vandals, Devo and others

Dec 26

1935 ● Abdul “Duke” Fakir → Ethiopian-American tenor vocalist in six decade R&B/soul vocal quartet The Four Tops, “Reach Out (I’ll Be There)” (#1, 1966), last surviving member of the group that performed together for over 40 years from 1953 without a change in lineup
1946 ● Bob Carpenter → Pianist (from 1977) for country-folk-bluegrass-rock The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and simply The Dirt Band, backed Steve Martin on “King Tut” (#17, 1978)
1951 ● Paul Anthony Quinn → Early and influential New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) band Saxon, “Power And The Glory” (#32, 1983)
1953 ● Henning Schmitz → Sound engineer then keyboardist for German electro-rock Kraftwerk, “Autobahn” (#25, 1975)
1953 ● Steve Witherington → Drummer for Brit pub rock/blue-eyed soul Ace, “How Long” (#3, 1975)
1963 ● Dana Baldinger → Bassist for Brit indie-folk-pop Popinjays, “Vote Elvis” (Modern Rock #17, 1988)
1963 ● Lars Ulrich → Drummer for heavy metal Metallica, “Enter Sandman” (#10, 1991)
1967 ● J. (Jay Noel Yuenger) → Guitarist for groove/alt metal White Zombie, “More Human Than Human” (#10, 1995)
1969 ● Peter Klett → Founding member and guitarist for grunge-rock Candlebox, “Far Behind” (#18, 1994)
1971 ● Jared Joseph Leto → Lead vocals, guitar and songwriter for indie pop-rock 30 Seconds To Mars, “From Yesterday” (Alt Rock #1, 2006), actor
1979 ● Chris Daughtry → Fifth season American Idol finalist, bandleader and guitarist for rock Daughtry “It’s Not Over” (#4, 2006)

Dec 27

1931 ● William “Scotty” Moore → Sun Records sessionman and longtime Elvis Presley backing band guitarist, Rolling Stone magazine #29 Greatest Guitarist of All Time
1941 ● Leslie Maguire → Piano and saxophone for Merseybeat pop-rock Gerry & The Pacemakers, “How Do You Do It?” (#9, 1964)
1941 ● Mike Pinder → Keyboards and vocals for Brit prog rock then pop-rock The Moody Blues, “Nights In White Satin” (#2, 1967), left in 1978 for a solo career
1943 ● Peter Sinfield → Early member of prog/space-rock King Crimson, “The Court Of The Crimson King” (#80, 1970), then solo and songwriter
1944 ● Michael Leslie “Mick” Jones → Rock guitarist for Spooky Tooth and founding member of hard/arena rock Foreigner, “Double Vision” (#2, 1978)
1944 ● Tracy Nelson → Founder, frontwoman and lead vocals for underappreciated 60s psych-blues-rock Mother Earth, then solo
1948 ● Larry Byrom → Guitar for Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968), solo, sessions
1950 ● Terry Bozzio → Drummer for Frank Zappa‘s band, then founded New Wave pop-rock Missing Persons, “Walking In L.A.” (Mainstream #12, 1982)
1952 ● David Knopfler → Rhythm guitar and vocals for post-punk New Wave rock Dire Straits, “Sultans Of Swing” (#4, 1979), solo, songwriter, younger brother of Mark Knopfler
1952 ● Karla Bonoff → L.A. pop-rock singer and songwriter, backing vocalist in Linda Ronstadt‘s band, solo “Personally” (#19, 1982)
1957 ● Jerry Gaskill → Drummer for progressive metal/Christian rock King’s X, “It’s Love” (Mainstream Rock #6, 1990)
1960 ● Martin “Youth” Glover → Founding member and bassist for post-punk New Wave dance-rock Killing Joke, “Follow The Leaders” (Club-Dance #25, 1981)
1972 ● Matt Slocum → Lead guitar and principal songwriter for Christian pop-rock Sixpence None The Richer, “Kiss Me” (#2, 1998)
1988 ● Hayley Nichole Williams → Lead vocals and keyboards for alt rock/pop-punk Paramore, “Misery Business” (#27, 2007)

Dec 28

1903 ● Earl Kenneth “Fatha” Hines → Early and influential modern jazz pianist and orchestra leader, Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Sarah Vaughan played in his band, died 4/22/1983
1910 ● Harold Rhodes → Inventor of the Rhodes electric piano, which became the most successful piano of its kind and dominated rock, pop, soul and jazz music in the 60s and 70s until succumbing to Japanese competition and digital synthesizers in the 80s but enjoys a resurgence of use in the 00s, died from complications of pneumonia on 12/17/2000
1915 ● Roebuck “Pops” Staples → Patriarch and manager of four-sister R&B/soul-gospel act The Staple Singers, “I’ll Take You There” (#1, 1972), died on 12/19/2000
1921 ● Johnny Otis (Ioannis Veliotes) → Swing-era bandleader, R&B record producer, record company A&R executive, rock band manager, songwriter and 50s and 60s R&B/soul singer, “Willie And The Hand Jive” (R&B #3, 1958)
1932 ● Dorsey Burnette → Country-pop and rockabilly singer with his brother in the Johnny Burnette Trio, solo, “(There Was A) Tall Oak Tree” (#23, 1962), prolific songwriter with over 350 titles covered by Glen Campbell, Jerry Lee Lewis, Rick Nelson, Stevie Wonder and others, died of a coronary arrest on 8/19/1979
1938 ● Charles Neville → Saxophonist for Joey Dee & The Starlighters, “Peppermint Twist” (#1, 1962) and New Orleans R&B/soul sibling act The Neville Brothers, “Yellow Moon” (1989)
1943 ● Charles “Chas” Hodges → Guitar, banjo, piano and vocals for Brit country-rock Head Hands & Feet, then pop-“rockney” duo Chas & Dave, “Gertcha” (UK #20, 1979)
1946 ● Edgar Winter → Straight blues and blues-rock keyboardist and saxophonist, songwriter and bandleader, The Edgar Winter Group, “Frankenstein” (#1, 1973), younger brother of Johnny Winter
1947 ● Dick Diamonde (Dingeman Ariaan Henry van der Sluijs) → Bassist in Aussie-based 60s pop-rock The Easybeats, “Friday On My Mind” (#16, 1967)
1948 ● Mary Weiss → Lead vocals for quintessential girl group quartet The Shangri-Las, “Leader Of The Pack” (#1, 1964), resurfaced with a solo album in 2007
1950 ● Alex Chilton → Frontman for short-lived blue-eyed soul The Box Tops, “The Letter” (#1, 1967), then power-pop cult band Big Star, “September Gurls” (1974, Rolling Stone #178), died on 3/17/2010 from heart failure
1951 ● Louis A. McCall, Sr. → Drummer, songwriter, singer and co-founder of R&B/soul-funk Con Funk Shun, “Ffun” (#23, R&B #1, 1978), murdered in a home invasion robbery on 6/25/1997
1953 ● Richard Clayderman (Philipe Pages) → The Guinness Book of World Records‘ “most successful pianist in the world,” French easy listening/instrumental pop composer and pianist with over 400 albums and 70 million in unit sales, compositions include original works, covered materials, film scores and easy listening renditions of classical works
1954 ● Rosie Vela → Model, actress, pop-rock singer and songwriter, “Magic Smile” (Adult #29, 1986)
1958 ● Mike McGuire → Drummer for neo-trad country Shenandoah, “The Church On Cumberland Road” (Country #1, 1989)
1960 ● Marty Roe → Founder, rhythm guitar and lead vocals for country-pop-bluegrass Diamond Rio, “One More Day” (Country #1, 2000)
1964 ● Paul Wagstaff → Guitarist for Madchester electro-dance club septet Paris Angels, “Perfume” (UK #55, 1990), then Happy Mondays, “Stinkin Thinkin” (Dance/Club #1, 1992) and Black Grape, “In The Name Of The Father” (UK #8, 1995)
1969 ● Joey Shuffield → Drummer for alt rock/power pop Fastball, “Out Of My Head” (#20, Adult Top 40 #3, 1999)
1971 ● Anita Dels → Vocals for Euro dance-pop 2 Unlimited, “Tribal Dance” (Dance/Club #7, 1993)
1978 ● John Legend (Stephens) → Neo-soul singer, pianist and songwriter, “Ordinary People” (#24, 2005)
1979 ● Akon (Aliaune Thiam) → Senegalese-American R&B/hip hop artist, “I Wanna Love You” (#1, 2006) plus 10 other Top 40 hits, has recorded as a guest on over 300 other Top 40 singles

Dec 29

1935 ● Virgil Johnson → Lead singer for R&B/doo wop The Velvets, “Tonight (Could Be The Night)” (#26, 1961)
1941 ● Ray Thomas → Founding member, harmonica and vocals for prog rock then pop-rock The Moody Blues, “Nights In White Satin” (#2, 1967)
1942 ● Jerry Summers (Gross) → Lead and first tenor for doo wop a cappella harmony turned early garage-rock/dance craze The Dovells, “Bristol Stomp” (#2, 1961)
1942 ● Rick Danko → Canadian-born bassist, vocalist and occasional songwriter for seminal roots rock The Band, “Up On Cripple Creek” (#25, 1970), solo, committed suicide on 12/10/1999
1946 ● Marianne Faithfull → Pop-rock singer and songwriter, former paramour of Mick Jagger, co-wrote The Rolling Stones‘ “Sister Morphine,” solo vocalist, “As Tears Go By” (#22, 1964), continues to record and release albums into the 10s
1947 ● Cozy Powell (Colin Flooks) → Journeyman but sought after and influential rock drummer with the Jeff Beck Group, Rainbow, Whitesnake, Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy and others, died in a one-car crash in the UK on 4/5/1998
1948 ● Charlie Spinosa → Trumpeter in blue-eyed soul one hit wonder John Fred & His Playboy Band, “Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)” (#1, 1968)
1951 ● Yvonne Elliman → Hawaii-born pop-rock singer and songwriter, acted in the Broadway stage production of Jesus Christ Superstar (1971), member of Eric Clapton‘s band and solo “If I Can’t Have You” (#1, 1977)
1955 ● Neil “Spyder” Giraldo → Lead guitarist for Pat Benatar‘s band, “Love Is A Battlefield” (#5, 1983)
1961 ● Jim Reid → Co-founder and lead singer in Scottish alt-pop-rock Jesus And Mary Chain, “Sometimes Always” (Modern Rock #4, 1994)
1961 ● Mark “Cow” Day → Guitarist for Madchester electro-dance club Happy Mondays, “Stinkin Thinkin” (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1963 ● Alex Gifford → Keyboards, bass and DJ for techno-dance Propellerheads, “History Repeating” (Dance/Club #10, 1998)
1966 ● Bryan Keith “Dexter” Holland → Frontman, guitar and vocals for 90s punk revival The Offspring, “Gone Away” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1997)
1968 ● Sadat X (Derek Murphy) → DJ and MC for alt hip hop trio Brand Nubian, “Don’t Let It Go To Your Head” (#54, Rap #3, 1998)
1970 ● Glen Phillips → Founder, lead vocals and songwriter for alt pop-rock Toad The Wet Sprocket, “All I Want” (#15, 1992), solo

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This Week’s Birthdays (December 16 -22)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Dec 16

12/16/1899 ● Noel Coward → Multi-talented author, poet, playwright, actor, stage, film and television producer and director, songwriter and pop/cabaret singer, “Mad About The Boy” (1932), died of a heart attack on 3/26/1973
1931 ● Karl Denver (Angus Murdo McKenzie) → Scottish one hit wonder pop-rock singer, “Wimoweh” (UK #4, 1961), died on 12/21/1998 from a brain tumor
1945 ● Tony Hicks → Guitar and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock The Hollies, “Bus Stop” (#5, 1966) and “Long Cool Woman In A Black Dress” (#2, 1972)
1946 ● Benny Andersson → Keyboards and vocals for internationally successful Scandinavian pop group ABBA, “Dancing Queen” (#1, 1976)
1949 ● Billy “Reverend Willie G.” Gibbons → Guitar and vocals for venerable Texas blues/boogie rock trio ZZ Top, “Legs” (#8, 1984)
1959 ● Steven Irvine → Drummer for Brit pop-rock Lloyd Cole & The Commotions, “Lost Weekend” (UK #17, 1985)
1968 ● Christopher Thorn → Guitarist for roots-psych-alt rock Blind Melon, “No Rain” (Modern Rock #1, 1993)
1968 ● Eulaulah Donyll “Lalah” Hathaway → The “First Daughter of Soul,” contemporary R&B and jazz-pop singer, “Heaven Knows” (R&B/Hip Hop #3, 1990), daughter of R&B/soul legend Donny Hathaway, member of the Daughters Of Soul supergroup with Nona Hendryx and others
1971 ● Michael McCary → Former bass vocals for R&B/urban soul a cappella Boyz II Men, “End Of The Road” (#1, 1992)

Dec 17

1936 ● Tommy Steele (Thomas William Hicks) → Early Brit rock ‘n roll teen idol vocalist, “Rock With The Caveman” (UK #13, 1956) and more than 20 other UK Top 40 hits, actor
1937 ● Art Neville → Vocalist and pianist with New Orleans soul-funk sibling group The Neville Brothers, “Yellow Moon” (1989)
1938 ● Carlo Little (Carl O’Neil Little) → First Rolling Stones drummer, replaced by Charlie Watts in 1963, session work including “Let’s Go To San Francisco” by The Flower Pot Men (UK #1, 1967)
1939 ● Eddie Kendricks → Founding member and lead vocals for R&B giants The Temptations, “My Girl” (#1, 1965), left in 1971 for solo career, “Keep On Truckin” (#1, 1973) plus 18 other R&B Top 40 hits, died from lung cancer on 10/5/1992
1942 ● Paul Butterfield → Blues-rock singer, harmonica player and bandleader with the legendary and biracial Butterfield Blues Band, later fronted Better Days and issued solo albums, died 5/4/1987 from a drug-related heart attack
1943 ● David Dee (David John Harman) → Lead vocals for Brit 60s pop-rock two hit wonder quintet Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich, “The Legend Of Xanadu” (UK #1, 1968), died of cancer on 1/9/2009
1946 ● Martin Smith → Jazz and blues rock drummer for Brit prog-rockers Simon Dupree & The Big Sound and Gentle Giant, died on 3/2/1997 from internal hemorrhaging
1947 ● Simon Bates → Brit radio DJ and music show host for the BBC Radio 1, Classic FM and The Breakfast Show on Smooth Radio
1948 ● Jim Bonfanti → Drummer 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), reunited in the 00s
1949 ● Paul Rodgers → Guitar and vocals for proto-metal/hard rock Free, “All Right Now” (#4, 1970), hard rock Bad Company, “Can’t Get Enough” (#5, 1974), supergroup The Firm and rock duo The Law with Kenney Jones of The Who, solo
1950 ● Carlton “Carlie” Barrett → Drummer for early reggae band The Upsetters and roots reggae Bob Marley & The Wailers, “Buffalo Soldier” (1983), murdered on 4/17/1987
1951 ● Wanda Hutchinson → Vocals in R&B/soul-gospel and disco sister trio The Emotions, “Best Of My Love” (#1, 1977)
1958 ● Mike Mills → Bassist for influential post-punk R.E.M., “The One I Love” (#9, 1987)
1959 ● Bob Stinson → Guitarist for garage punk then alt rock pioneers The Replacements, “I’ll Be You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1989), died of an accidental drug overdose on 2/18/1995
1961 ● Sarah Dallin → Singer for pop-rock Bananarama, “Venus” (#1, 1986) and 11 Dance/Club Top 40 hits
1964 ● David “Ginger” Walls → Founder, guitarist, singer and songwriter for Brit hard rock The Wildhearts, “Sick Of Drugs” (UK #14, 1995)
1969 ● Micky Quinn → Bassist for Brit punk-pop trio Supergrass, “Alright/Time” (Modern Rock #1, 1995)
1972 ● Craig “DJ Homicide” Bullock → DJ for funk-pop-rock Sugar Ray, “Fly” (#1, 1997), solo
1973 ● Eddie Fisher → Drums and percussion for self-proclaimed “genreless” pop-rock OneRepublic, “Apologize” (#1, 2006), most popular digital download/highest airplay song ever to-date
1978 ● Neil Christopher Sanderson → Co-founder, drummer and backing vocals for Canadian punk/metal Three Days Grace, “Just Like You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1989 ● Taylor York → Guitarist for alt rock/pop-punk Paramore, “Misery Business” (#27, 2007)

Dec 18

1917 ● Eddie “Cleanhead” Vincent → Jump blues, jazz bebop and R&B alto saxophonist, blues shouter and bandleader, “Old Maid Boogie” (R&B #1, 1947), toured and recorded regularly through four decades before dying of a heart attack on 7/2/1988
1931 ● Allen Klein → Businessman, talent agent, film producer, record label executive and manager for Sam Cooke, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and others, died from Alzheimer’s disease on 7/4/2009
1938 ● Bryan James “Chas” Chandler → Bassist for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964), producer and manager for Jimi Hendrix and Slade, died of heart failure on 7/17/1996
1941 ● Sam Andrew → Founding member, guitarist and singer for 60s psych-rock Big Brother & The Holding Company, “Piece Of My Heart” (#12, 1968), Janis Joplin‘s Kozmic Blues Band, “Me And Bobby McGee” (#1, 1971), film score composer, reunited Big Brother in 1987 and continues
1942 ● Les Cauchi → Tenor vocal for R&B/doo wop The Del-Satins, which became The Brooklyn Bridge, “Worst That Could Happen” (#3, 1968)
1943 ● Keith Richards → The “Human Guitar Riff,” founding member, lead guitarist, and co-songwriter for The Rolling Stones, “Honky Tonk Woman” (#1, 1969), solo, Rolling Stone magazine’s #10 Great Guitarist of All Time
1948 ● Bill Nelson → Prog rock, electropop, experimental and ambient music composer, guitarist and songwriter, founded and fronted prog rock Be Bop Deluxe, “Modern Music” (1977), prolific solo career since the late 70s
1950 ● Martha Johnson → Vocals and leader of Canadian post-punk Martha & The Muffins, “Echo Beach” (Juno Single of the Year, 1980)
1953 ● Elliot Easton → Lead guitar for The Cars, “My Best Friend’s Girl” (#35, 1978), The New Cars, power pop Click Five and roots rock Creedence Clearwater Revisited
1958 ● Kevin “Geordie” Walker → Guitarist in post-punk/gloom-industrial metal Killing Joke, “Follow The Leaders” (#25, 1981)
1959 ● Grantley Evan “Daddy G” Marshall → Vocals and songwriter in pioneering trip-hop collaborative duo Massive Attack, “Teardrop” (UK #10, 1998), producer
1963 ● Greg D’Angelo → Drummer for Danish-American heavy/hair metal White Lion, “When The Children Cry” (#3, 1987)
1964 ● Robson Green → Brit singer, songwriter, TV host and actor, covered “Unchained Melody” (UK #1, 1995)
1966 ● Steve Dullaghan → Bassist for indie “blonde” pop-rockers The Primitives, co-wrote “Crash” (Modern Rock #3, 1988), died from a cannabis overdose on 2/4/2009
1968 ● Andy Miller → Guitarist for goofball Brit power pop trio Dodgy, “Good Enough” (UK #4, 1996)
1970 ● DMX (Earl Simmons) → Vocalist, songwriter and drum machine rap pioneer, “Party Up (Up In Here)” (#27, 1999), screen actor, Reality TV host
1972 ● DJ Lethal (Leor Dimant) → Latvian-born producer and DJ/turntablist for House Of Pain and rap-metal Limp Bizkit, “My Way” (Mainstream Rock #4, 2001)
1980 ● Christina Aguilera → Dance-pop singer, “Genie In A Bottle” (#1, 1999), collaborated with Mya, Lil’ Kim and Pink on remake of “Lady Maramalade” (#1, 2001)
1980 ● Lyndsay Armaou → Vocals in Irish one hit wonder girl-group B*Witched, “C’est La Vie” (#9, 1999)

Dec 19

1915 ● Edith Piaf (Edith Giovanna Gassion) → Widely popular French-born opera and adult pop singer, “Milord” (#88, 1959), died on 10/11/1963 from liver cancer
1918 ● Professor Longhair (Henry Roeland Byrd) → Influential and pioneering New Orleans R&B singer and pianist, switched to blues and rock ‘n’ roll and later jazz, won a posthumous Grammy for the collection House Party New Orleans Style (1987), died of a heart attack on 1/30/1980
1940 ● Phil Ochs → 60s folk “outlaw” singer and songwriter, “I Ain’t Marching Anymore” (1965), committed suicide by hanging himself at his sister’s home in Queens, NY on 4/9/1976
1941 ● Maurice White → Seven-time Grammy-winning drummer, singer, songwriter, founder and frontman of R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975), producer for Deniece Williams, The Emotions and others
1944 ● Alvin Lee (Graham Barnes) → Underrated British blues-rock guitarist, founding member, lead vocals and lead guitar for Ten Years After, “I’d Love To Change The World” (Top 40, 1971)
1944 ● Zalman “Zal” Yanovsky → The “Zany One,” guitarist for folk-pop-rock The Lovin’ Spoonful, “Summer In The City” (#1, 1965), restaurateur in Kingston, Ontario, died 12/13/2002 after a heart attack
1945 ● John McEuen → Singer, songwriter, guitar, banjo and mandolin for country-folk-bluegrass-rock The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, “Mr. Bojangles” (#9, 1971), solo and Grammy-winning producer
1957 ● Doug Johnson → Keyboards for Canadian hard/pop-rockers Loverboy, “Turn Me Loose” (Mainstream Rock #6, 1981)
1958 ● Limahl (Christopher Hamill) → Lead singer for one hit wonder New Wave light synth-bubblegum-pop Kajagoogoo, “Too Shy” (#5, 1983), solo, “Never Ending Story” (Adult Contemporary #6, 1984)
1961 ● John Eascott → Trumpet for New Wave swing/pop Roman Holliday, “Don’t Try To Stop It” (#68, UK #14, 1983)
1968 ● Kevin Shepard → Original drummer for Grammy-nominated alt/roots rock Tonic, “If You Could Only See” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1997)

Dec 20

1944 ● Bobby Colomby → Drummer for jazz-rock/pop-rock fusion band Blood, Sweat & Tears, “Spinning Wheel” (#2, 1969)
1945 ● Peter Criss (Criscoula) → Drummer and “Catman” character in campy hard/glam-rock Kiss, “Detroit Rock City” (#7, 1976), solo
1948 ● Stephen “Little Stevie” Wright → Lead vocals for Aussie-based 60s pop-rock The Easybeats, “Friday On My Mind” (#16, 1967), then solo
1949 ● Alan Parsons → Brit studio engineer, part-producer for The BeatlesAbbey Road (1969) and Let It Be (1970), plus Pink Floyd‘s The Dark Side Of The Moon (1973), songwriter, musician and bandleader for prog-pop-rock The Alan Parsons Project, “Games People Play” (#16, 1981)
1956 ● Guy Babylon → Keyboardist and contributor in the Elton John band, died in a swimming accident in his L.A. home pool on 9/2/2009
1957 ● Anita Ward → One hit wonder R&B/soul-disco singer, “Ring My Bell” (#1, 1979)
1957 ● Michael Watt → Seminal post-punk bassist and founder of Minutemen, dos, fiREHOUSE, also with The Stooges and Banyan
1957 ● Stephen William “Billy” Bragg → Brit alt rock singer, songwriter and left-wing activist, “Sexuality” (Modern Rock #2, 1991) and “She’s Leaving Home” (UK #1, 1988), wrote “A New England” for Kirsty MacColl (UK #7, 1985)
1966 ● Chris Robinson → Founder, guitarist and songwriter for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1971 ● Roger J. Beaujard → Guitarist and drum machine programmer for death metal/deathgrind duo Mortician, “Chainsaw Dismemberment” (1999)
1975 ● Graham Hopkins → Former drummer for Irish grunge rock Therapy?, then solo, now sessions and touring bands
1980 ● Christopher “Dibs” Edwards → Bassist for Brit indie rock Kasabian, “Club Foot” (Modern Rock #27, 2004)
1982 ● David Cook → Multi-instrumentalist post-grunge pop-rock singer and songwriter, “The Time Of My Life” (#3, 2008), winner of the seventh season of American Idol (2008)
1990 ● JoJo (Joanna Noelle Levesque) → R&B/dance-pop singer and songwriter, “Too Little Too Late” (#3, 2006), actress

Dec 21

1920 ● Luigi Creatore → Songwriter, producer, record label executive, teamed with Hugo Peretti to write dozens of hit songs for multiple artists, including Sam Cooke’s “Twistin’ The Night Away” (#9, 1962) and The Isley Brothers’ “Shout” (#49, 1959)
1940 ● Frank Zappa → Multi-instrumentalist, musical satirist, rock/classical fusion composer, film score writer and producer, bandleader, frontman for The Mothers Of Invention, solo, “Valley Girl” (#32, 1982), died from prostate cancer on 12/4/1993
1940 ● Ray Hildebrand → With Jill Jackson, vocals in early pop-rock two hit wonder duo Paul & Paula, “Hey Paula” (#1, 1963) and “Young Lovers” (#6, 1963), left the music industry in the late 60s but returned in the 80s as a Christian music artist
1942 ● Carla Thomas → The “Queen of Memphis Soul,” Stax Records R&B/Southern soul belter, “B-A-B-Y” (#14, R&B #3, 1966) and 14 other R&B Top 40 hits, daughter of soul-funker Rufus Thomas
1943 ● Albert Lee → Brit country-folk-blues-rock guitarist, co-founded Head Hands & Feat, session work with Jackson Browne, Joe Cocker, Emmylou Harris, Eric Clapton and others, solo
1946 ● Carl Wilson → Guitars and vocals for sunny-pop/surf-rockers The Beach Boys, “Good Vibrations” (#1, 1966), died from brain cancer 2/6/1998
1951 ● Nick Gilder → Brit-born frontman for Canadian glam-rock Sweeney Todd, then solo, “Hot Child In The City” (#1, 1978)
1953 ● Betty Wright → Grammy-winning R&B/Miami soul and quiet storm vocalist, “Clean Up Woman” (#6, 1972)
1964 ● Emmett J. “Murph” Murphy III → Drummer for influential indie/cult rock Dinosaur Jr., “Start Choppin'” (Modern Rock #3, 1993), left in 1993 to join The Lemonheads, “Into Your Arms” (Modern Rock #1, 1993), rejoined Dinosaur Jr. in 2005
1965 ● Gabrielle “Gabby” Glaser → Guitarist and vocals for all-girl alt rock/hip hop Luscious Jackson, “Naked Eye” (#36, 1996)
1971 ● Brett Scallions → Guitar, bass and vocals for post-grunge/alt rock Fuel, “Falls On Me” (Mainstream Rock #9, 2004)

Dec 22

1939 ● James Gurley → Guitarist for 60s Janis Joplin-fronted, psych-rock Big Brother & The Holding Company, “Piece Of My Heart” (#12, 1968), performed with the band into the 00s, died on 12/20/2009 from a heart attack
1944 ● Colin Ernest “Barrie” Jenkins → Founding member and drummer for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964) and hard/blues-rock The Animals, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (#12, 1966), now manages a music store
1946 ● Pamela Susan Courson → Long-time companion of Jim Morrison, frontman for The Doors, “Hello, I Love You” (#1, 1968), inherited his estate over the objection of his family following a California court decision that theirs was a “common law marriage,” died from a heroin overdose on 4/25/1974
1946 ● Rick Nielsen → Vocals and guitar for power pop Cheap Trick, “I Want You To Want Me” (#7, 1979) and “The Flame” (#1, 1988)
1949 ● Maurice Gibb → Singer, songwriter, producer in pop-rock then disco sibling trio The Bee Gees, “Stayin’ Alive” (#1, 1977), solo and producer, younger twin of Robin Gibb, died on 1/12/2003 from a twisted intestine
1949 ● Robin Gibb → Singer, songwriter, producer in pop-rock then disco sibling trio The Bee Gees, “Stayin’ Alive” (#1, 1977), older twin of Maurice Gibb, died from liver and colon cancer on 5/20/2012
1950 ● Alan Williams → Vocals for glam rock/rock ‘n roll revival The Rubettes, “Sugar Baby Love” (UK#1, US #37, 1974)
1955 ● Barry Sless → Six-string and peddle steel guitarist for country-rock David Nelson Band, Kingfish, Phil Lesh & Friends and others
1957 ● Ricky Ross → Lead singer in Scottish indie pop-rock Deacon Blue, “Real Gone Kid” (UK #8, 1988), solo, now a DJ on BBC Radio Scotland
1966 ● Danny Saber → Producer, remixer, trip-hop DJ and former bassist with alt Brit-pop Black Grape, “England’s Irie” (UK #6, 1996)
1968 ● Richard James Edwards → Rhythm guitar, songwriter and vocals for Brit alt rock/neo-punk Manic Street Preachers, “The Masses Against The Classes” (UK #1, 2000), disappeared on 2/1/1995 and officially presumed dead in a 2008 court ruling
1972 ● Vanessa Paradis → French teen-pop singer and actress, “Joe Le Taxi” (UK #3, France #1, 1998)
1984 ● Basshunter (Jonas Erik Altberg) → Swedish musician, DJ and dance-pop singer, “Now You’re Gone” (Dance Airplay #1, UK #1, 2008)
1989 ● Jordin Briana Sparks → R&B/pop-soul singer and songwriter, American Idol 2007 winner and youngest to date, “No Air” (#3, 2008) and four other Top 20 hits

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This Week’s Birthdays (December 9 -15)

Happy Birthday this week to:

Dec 09

1934 ● Junior Wells (Amos Wells Blakemore, Jr.) → Chicago blues harmonica player and singer, “Little By Little” (R&B #23, 1960), worked with Buddy Guy, toured in front of The Rolling Stones in the 70s, issued occasional albums in the 80s and 90s, appeared in the sequel movie Blues Brothers 2000 (1998), died from lymphoma on 1/15/1998
1941 ● Dan Hicks → Eccentric roots-folk-rock songwriter and guitarist for The Charlatans, frontman for folk-pop Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks, solo
1941 ● Sam Strain → Vocals for doo wop/novelty The Chips, “Rubber Biscuit” (1956), then doo wop Little Anthony & The Imperials, “Tears On My Pillow” (#4, 1958) and R&B/Philly soul giants The O’Jays, “Love Train” (#1, 1973)
1943 ● Kenny Vance (Kenneth Rosenberg) → Original member of AM pop-rock vocals for Jay & The Americans, “Cara Mia” (#4, 1965), music supervisor for several films including Animal House (1978) and Eddie And The Cruisers (1983), music director for Saturday Night Live, producer and bandleader
1944 ● Neil Innes → Founding member, guitar and vocals for Brit comedy-rock Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, “I’m The Urban Spaceman” (UK #5, 1968)
1944 ● Shirley Brickley → Vocals in mixed gender R&B doo-wop quartet The Orlons, “The Wah-Watusi” (#2, R&B #5, 1962), shot to death by an intruder in her Philadelphia home on 10/13/1977
1950 ● Joan Armatrading → St. Kitts-born Grammy-nominated soul-reggae-folk singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Drop The Pilot” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1983)
1954 ● Jack Sonni → Rhythm guitarist for Dire Straits in mid-80s, including “Money For Nothing” (#1, 1985)
1955 ● Randy Murray → Guitarist for latest line-up of Canadian pop-rockers Bachman-Turner Overdrive, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” (#1, 1974)
1957 ● Donny Osmond → Teenybopper lead vocals and center of sibling pop vocal group The Osmonds, “One Bad Apple” (#1, 1971), then solo, “Soldier Of Love” (#2, 1989), TV actor and host
1957 ● Steve Askew → Former guitarist for one hit wonder New Wave light synth-bubblegum-pop Kajagoogoo, “Too Shy” (#5, 1983), now a stained glass artist
1958 ● Nick Seymour → Bassist for Aussie New Wave pop-rock Crowded House, “Don’t Dream It’s Over” (#2, 1987)
1964 ● Paul H. Landers → Rhythm guitar for heavy metal/Kraut rock Rammstein, “Sehnsucht” (Mainstream Rock #20, 1998)
1966 ● Michael Foster → Drummer for pop-metal FireHouse, “When I Look Into Your Eyes” (#8, 1992) and on albums by FireHouse bandmate and guitarist Bill Leverty
1968 ● Brian Bell → Rhythm guitarist and songwriter for post-grunge alt pop-rock Weezer, “Beverly Hills” (#10, 2005)
1969 ● Jakob Dylan → Singer, songwriter and guitarist for roots rock The Wallflowers, “One Headlight” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1996), solo, son of folk-rock icon Bob Dylan
1970 ● Kara DioGuardi → Grammy-nominated dance-pop and pop-rock songwriter, music video producer, American Idol judge and record company A&R executive, wrote or co-wrote nearly 50 charting singles, including “Ooh Ooh Baby” for Britney Spears
1970 ● Zachary Foley → Original bassist for Brit dance-rock quintet EMF (“Epsom Mad Funkers“), “Unbelievable” (#1, 1990), died 1/3/2002 of drug overdose
1971 ● Geoff Barrow → Remix producer and co-founder of avant-garde electronica and trip-hop group Portishead, “Sour Times” (#53, 1995)
1972 ● Tre Cool (Frank Edwin Wright III) → Drummer for post-grunge alt rock/punk revival Green Day, “Boulevard Of Broken Dreams” (#2, 2004)

Dec 10

1910 ● John Henry Hammond II → Influential Columbia Records executive and A&R scout, responsible for starting or furthering the careers of Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, Janis Joplin, Stevie Ray Vaughan and many others, died 7/10/1987 following a stroke
1926 ● Eddie “Guitar Slim” Jones → Flamboyant and oft-covered New Orleans blues guitarist, “The Things That I Used To Do” (R&B #1, 1954), included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs That Shaped Rock ‘n’ Roll, died penniless from pneumonia on 2/7/1959
1941 ● Chad Stewart (David Stuart Chadwick) → Vocals and guitar in strings-backed British Invasion light folk-pop duo Chad & Jeremy, “A Summer Song” (#7, 1964)
1946 ● Christopher John “Ace” Kefford → Bassist and founding member of Brit psych-rock The Move, “Blackberry Way” (UK #1, 1968), solo
1946 ● Walter “Clyde” Orange → Drummer and backing vocals for Grammy-winning Motown R&B/soul-funk Commodores, “Three Times A Lady” (#1, 1978) and “Nightshift” (#3, 1985)
1948 ● Jessica Cleaves → Lead singer for pop-rock vocal group The Friends Of Distinction, “Grazing In The Grass” (#3, 1969), backing vocals for Earth, Wind & Fire and Parliament/Funkadelic
1948 ● Ralph Vierra Tavares → Vocals in five brother R&B/funk-disco Tavares, “Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel” (#15, 1976)
1951 ● Juan Raul David “Johnny” Rodriguez → Latin-American outlaw country singer and songwriter, “Ridin’ My Thumb To Mexico” (#70, Country #1, 1973) and five other Country #1 hits and 23 other Country Top 40 singles
1954 ● Geoff Deane → Vocalist for Brit dance-pop band Modern Romance, “Can You Move” (Dance/Club #2, 1981) and “Best Years Of Our Lives” (UK #4, 1982)
1957 ● Paul Hardcastle → Session keyboard player in the 70s, then solo synth-dance-pop music composer and producer, “19” (#20, Dance #1, 1985), now produces TV soundtracks and remixes for others
1958 ● Helen “Pepsi” DeMacque → Backing vocals for New Wave dance-pop Wham!, “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” (#1, 1984), left to form pop duo Pepsi & Shirlie, “Heartache” (#78, Dance #2, 1987)
1965 ● Joseph Donald “J” Mascis → Singer, songwriter and lead guitar for influential indie/cult rock Dinosaur Jr., “Start Choppin'” (Modern Rock #3, 1993)
1966 ● Timothy Christian Riley → Drummer for R&B/new jack swing soul-funk Tony! Toni! Tone!, “If I Had No Loot” (#7, 1993)
1972 ● Brian Molko → Scottish-American singer, songwriter and guitarist for alt glam-rock/punk revival Placebo, “Pure Morning” (Mainstream Rock #40, 1999)
1972 ● Scot Alexander → Bassist for melodic hard rock Dishwalla, “Counting Blue Cars” (#15, 1996)
1974 ● Meg White → Drummer with husband Jack in alt rock duo The White Stripes, “Seven Nation Army” (Mainstream Rock #12, 2004)

Dec 11

1916 ● Perez Prado → The “King of the Mambo,” Cuban-born bandleader, pianist and composer, “Cherry Pink And Apple Blossom White” (#1, 1955), died from a stroke on 9/14/1989
1926 ● Big Mama Thornton (Willie Mae Thornton) → Early blues singer and songwriter, recorded “Hound Dog” (R&B #1, 1952) before Elvis, wrote and recorded “Ball And Chain” (1968) which was covered by Janis Joplin, died 7/25/1984 from liver failure
1934 ● Curtis Williams → Bass-baritone singer for R&B/doo wop vocals The Penguins, “Earth Angel” (#8, 1954), died on 8/10/1979
1940 ● David Gates → Singer, songwriter, guitarist, producer and co-founder of soft MOR pop-rock Bread, “Make It With You” (#1, 1970), sessions and solo, “Goodbye Girl” (#15, 1978)
1944 ● Brenda Lee (Brenda Mae Tarpley) → Pop, country and rockabilly singer, “I’m Sorry” (#1, 1960) and 27 other Top 40 hits between 1960 and 1967
1951 ● Philip “Spike” Edney → Keyboardist and session musician for Queen, The Rolling Stones, Duran Duran, Boomtown Rats, Dexy’s Midnight Runners, Haircut 100 and others, bandleader for Spike’s All-Stars
1954 ● Jermaine Jackson → Bass and vocals in R&B/pop-soul sibling act The Jackson 5, “I Want You Back” (#1, 1970), then solo, “Let’s Get Serious” (#9, 1978) and six other Top 40 hits, occasional film producer and director
1957 ● Mike Mesaros → Bass and vocals for alt pop-rock The Smithereens, “Only A Memory” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1988)
1958 ● Nikki Sixx (Franklin Carlton Serafino Ferrana, Jr.) → Co-founder, songwriter and bassist for hair-metal Mötley Crüe, “Dr. Feelgood” (#6, 1989) and Brides Of Destruction, session work, producer, collaborator, fashion designer and author
1961 ● Darryl “The Munch” Jones → Bassist for The Rolling Stones since Bill Wyman’s departure in 1993, session work with Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Sting, Peter Gabriel, Madonna, Eric Clapton, Joan Armatrading and others
1962 ● Curtis Williams → Keyboards for jazz-fusion then R&B/funk Kool & The Gang, “Jungle Boogie” (#4, 1973), producer
1964 ● Justin Currie → Founding member, bass, vocals and songwriting for pop and country-rock Del Amitri, “Roll To Me” (#10, 1995)
1967 ● DJ Yella (Antoine Carraby) → Longest-lasting member of controversial and influential gangsta rap quintet N.W.A., “Express Yourself” (Hot Dance #38, 1989)
1972 ● Easther Bennett → Brit R&B/dance-pop singer for girl-group Eternal, “Stay” (#19, 1994), collaborated with Aswad, songwriter
1972 ● Mos Def (Dante Terrell Smith) → Actor and hip hop MC, first with Talib Kweli in rap duo Black Star, then solo, “Oh No” (#83, Rap #1, 2000), Emmy-nominated TV and film actor
1981 ● Zacky Vengeance (Zachary James Baker) → Rhythm guitar and backing vocals for pop/metal Avenged Sevenfold, “Bat Country” (#60, Mainstream Rock #2, 2005)

Dec 12

1915 ● Francis Albert “Frank” Sinatra → Film actor, “Rat Pack” founding member and nine-time Grammy-winning swing, pop and adult contemporary singer, “That’s Life” (#4, 1966) and 26 other Top 40 singles
1938 ● Connie Francis (Conetta Rosa Maria Franconera) → Hugely successful 50s and 60s pop singer and one of the top selling female pop artists of all time, “Where The Boys Are” (#4, 1961) plus 32 other Top 40 hits
1940 ● Dionne Warwick (Marie Dionne Warrick) → Grammy-winning, sweet-voiced pop and soul diva, “Walk On By” (#6, 1964), “Then Came You” (#1, 1974) and “That’s What Friends Are For” (#1, 1985) and 28 other Top 40 hits
1941 ● Terry Kirkman → Founding member, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter for light pop-rock vocal group The Association, wrote “Cherish” (#1, 1966)
1942 ● Declan “Dec” Cluskey → Vocals and multiple instruments in Irish pop-rock trio The Bachelors, “Diane” (#10, 1964)
1942 ● Mike Heron → Guitar, keyboards and vocals in esoteric Scottish psych-Celtic-folk/early World music duo The Incredible String Band
1942 ● Tim Hauser → Singer in Grammy-winning jazz-pop fusion vocal group Manhattan Transfer, “Boy From New York City” (#7, 1981)
1943 ● Dave Munden → Drummer with British Invasion pop-rock The Tremeloes, “Silence Is Golden” (US #11, UK #1, 1967)
1943 ● Forrest Richard “Dickey” Betts → Singer, songwriter and lead guitarist for Southern rock The Allman Brothers Band, wrote “Ramblin’ Man” (#2, 1973), solo and frontman for Great Southern, Rolling Stone magazine #58 Greatest Guitarist of All-Time
1943 ● Grover Washington Jr. → Grammy-winning R&B/jazz-soul fusion saxophonist, composer and bandleader, “Just The Two Of Us” (#2, 1981), died on 12/17/1999 of a heart attack
1944 ● Rob Tyner (Robert Derminer) → Lead vocals for Detroit proto-punk rockers MC5, “Kick Out The Jams” (1969), died 9/17/1991 of a heart attack
1945 ● Alan Ward → Lead guitarist for one hit wonder English beat/pop-rock The Honeycombs, “Have I The Right?” (#5, 1964)
1945 ● Tony Williams → Respected jazz-fusion drummer with the Miles Davis band, then fronted his own band Lifetime, member of V.S.O.P., died 2/23/1997 from a heart attack following gall bladder surgery
1946 ● Clive Bunker → Drummer for early line-up of Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973)
1947 ● Ralph Scala → Organ and vocals for early psychedelic rock quintet Blues Magoos, “(We Ain’t Got) Nothin’ Yet” (#5, 1967)
1947 ● Vin Scelsa → Long-time and beloved New York City area progressive FM radio DJ, WFMU (Upsala College, New Jersey), WLIR (Long Island), WABC, WPLJ and WNEW (New York)
1948 ● Ray Jackson → Vocals, mandolin and harmonica for Brit folk-rock Lindisfarne, “Lady Eleanor” (UK #3, 1971)
1953 ● Bruce Kulik → Session and touring band guitarist for Meat Loaf, Kiss, Grand Funk Railroad, Michael Bolton and others
1957 ● Cy Curnin → Founder and lead vocals of New Wave pop-rock The Fixx, “One Thing Leads To Another” (#4, 1983)
1957 ● Sheila E. (Sheila Escovedo) → R&B/dance-pop singer and drummer, “The Glamorous Life” (#7, 1984), session work with Prince, Stevie Wonder, Mariah Carey, Phil Collins, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion and others
1959 ● Belouis Some (Neville Keighley) → New Wave electronic/synth-dance-pop singer, “Some People” (#67, Dance/Club #8, 1985)
1961 ● Daniel O’Donnell → Irish country-pop crooner and songwriter, “Give A Little Love” (#7, 1998)
1963 ● Claudia Brücken → Vocals and frontwoman with German synth-pop Propaganda, “p:Machinery” (Dance/Club #10, 1986)
1963 ● Eric Schenkman → Guitarist for alt blues-rock jam band Spin Doctors, “Two Princes” (#7, 1993)
1967 ● Nick Dimichino → Bassist for indie power pop band Nine Days, “Absolutely (Story Of A Girl)” (#6, 2000)
1968 ● Daniel “Danny Boy” O’Connor → Vocals in white hip-hop one hit wonder trio House Of Pain, “Jump Around” (#3, 1992)
1971 ● Johnny Dean → Vocals for short-lived, super-hyped 90s Britpop Menswear, “Being Brave” (UK #10, 1996)
1976 ● Dan Hawkins → Guitarist and vocals for Brit hard rock The Darkness, “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” (Mainstream #35, 2004)
1977 ● Dino Meneghin → Guitarist for post-grunge alt rock The Calling, “Wherever You Will Go” (#5, 2001)
1980 ● Carl Dalemo → Bassist for Brit-Swede indie pop-rock Razorlight, “America” (UK #1, 2006)

Dec 13

1940 ● Tony Gomez → Vocals for Brit R&B/soul-pop The Foundations, “Baby Now That I’ve Found You” (#11, 1967)
1945 ● Robert Martinez → Drummer for garage rock legends ? And The Mysterians, “96 Tears” (#1, 1966)
1948 ● Andy Peebles → BBC Radio DJ and the last person to interview John Lennon
1948 ● Jeff “Skunk” Baxter → Guitarist for Steely Dan, “Reeling In The Years” (#11, 1973), joined The Doobie Brothers in 1974, “Black Water” (#1, 1975), now a missile defense consultant and government contractor
1948 ● Ted Nugent → The “Motor City Madman,” guitarist for psych-rock Amboy Dukes, “Journey To The Centre Of The Mind” (#16, 1968), solo, “Cat Scratch Fever” (#30, 1977) and supergroup Damn Yankees, “High Enough” (#3, 1991)
1949 ● Randy Owen → Founder and lead vocals for country-pop-rock Alabama, “Love In The First Degree” (#15, 1982)
1949 ● Tom Verlaine → Guitar and vocals for punk-rock Television, “Marquee Moon” (Rolling Stone 500 #128, 1977)
1950 ● Davy O’List → Journeyman Brit guitarist for prog rock The Attack, The Nice, Pink Floyd, Roxy Music, Jet and others, solo
1952 ● Berton Averre → Guitarist for power pop The Knack, “My Sharona” (#1, 1979), now a stage and screenplay writer
1958 ● Dana Strum (Strumwasser) → Bassist in pop-glam metal Slaughter, “Fly To The Angels” (#19, 1990), died in a car crash on 2/5/1998
1967 ● Jamie Foxx (Eric Marlon Bishop) → Actor, pianist and singer, “Gold Digger” (#1, 2005), won Academy Award for his portrayal of soul great Ray Charles in the film Ray (2005)
1970 ● Daniel Patrick → Session and touring band guitars and keyboards for Nine Inch Nails, Tapeworm, Methods of Mayhem and others
1974 ● Nick McCarthy → Rhythm guitar and keyboards for Scottish art-pop-rock Franz Ferdinand, “Take Me Out” (Alt Rock #3, 2004)
1975 ● Tom DeLonge → Lead guitar and vocals for pop-punk Blink-182, “All The Small Things” (#6, 2000)
1981 ● Amy Lynn Lee Hartzler → Founder, lead vocals, songwriter and pianist for Grammy-winning goth-pop-metal Evanescence, “Bring Me To Life” (#5, 2003)
1989 ● Taylor Alison Swift → Country-pop singer and songwriter, “You Belong With Me” (#2, 2009), actress

Dec 14

1911 ● Lindley Armstrong “Spike” Jones → Multi-instrumentalist, musical comedian and satirist, bandleader for The City Slickers and their unique parodies of popular hits of all eras and genres, died on 5/1/1965 from the effects of emphysema
1915 ● Jerry Daniels → Founding member, tenor vocals and string instruments for pioneering black R&B/doo wop group The Ink Spots, “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” (#2, R&B #1, 1943), left the group in 1936 before they achieved popularity, died 11/7/1995
1932 ● Charlie Rich → The “Silver Fox,” Grammy-winning country-pop-blues singer and musician, “The Most Beautiful Girl” (#1, 1974) plus eight other Country #1 singles and seven other Top 40 hits, died on 7/25/1995 from a blood clot in his lung
1937 ● Warren Ryanes → Baritone vocals for one hit wonder R&B/doo wop sextet The Monotones, “(Who Wrote) The Book Of Love” (#5, 1958), died 6/16/1982
1938 ● Gary Usher → California surf rock songwriter and record producer, co-wrote The Beach Boys‘ “In My Room” (#23, 1963) and others songs with Brian Wilson, produced two albums for The Byrds, died on 5/25/1990
1943 ● Frank Allen (Francis Renaud McNeice) → Bassist for Merseybeat band The Searchers, “Needles And Pins” (#13, 1963)
1944 ● Linda Jones → R&B/soul-gospel singer, “Hypnotized” (R&B #4, 1967), died 3/14/72 after collapsing into a diabetic coma after performing at Harlem’s Apollo Theater in New York
1946 ● Jackie McAuley → Keyboards for Irish garage-rock, proto-punk Them, “Gloria” (#71, 1966), solo and co-founder of The Belfast Gypsies
1946 ● Jane Birkin → Ingénue, film actress and pop singer, steamy duet with Serge Gainsbourg, “Je T’Aime… Moi Non Plus” (#69, 1970), the only French language US Top 100 hit
1946 ● John Du Prez (Trevor Jones) → Trumpeter for Brit dance-pop band Modern Romance, “Can You Move” (Dance/Club #2, 1981) and “Best Years Of Our Lives” (UK #4, 1982)
1946 ● Joyce Vincent-Wilson → Light pop vocalist in Tony Orlando & Dawn, “Knock Three Times” (#1, 1971)
1947 ● Anna Marie “Patty” Duke → Pop singer and TV actor, “Don’t Just Stand There” (#8, 1965), star of The Patty Duke Show, actors’ union executive
1949 ● Cliff Williams → Bassist for AC/DC replacing Mark Evans in 1977, “Back In Black” (#37, 1981)
1954 ● Ray Stephens → TV actor and later lead singer for gay disco troupe Village People, “YMCA” (#2, 1979), died from drug abuse on 10/4/1990
1958 ● Mike Scott → Singer, songwriter and leader of Celtic folk-rock The Waterboys, “Fisherman’s Blues” (Modern Rock #3, 1988)
1958 ● Peter “Spider” Stacy → Founding member, vocals, guitar and tin whistle in Irish folk-punk-rock The Pogues, “Tuesday Morning” (Rock #11, 1993)
1966 ● Mark Gillespie → Vocals for Brit electronic dance-pop boy band Big Fun, “Stomp!” (#12, 1994)
1966 ● Tim Sköld → Former bassist for industrial-pop-metal Marilyn Manson, “The Dope Show” (Mainstream Rock #12, 1998)
1975 ● Brian Dalyrimple → Vocals for urban R&B/dance-club brother quartet Soul For Real, “Candy Rain” (#2, 1995)
1979 ● Sophie Monk → Singer in pre-fab Aussie all-girl pop vocal quintet Bardot, “Poison” (Aus. #1, 2000), solo
1988 ● Vanessa Hudgens → American actress and singer in High School Musical movies (most watched cable TV movies ever)

Dec 15

1919 ● Max Yasgur → Bethel, NY dairy farmer on whose property the 1969 Woodstock Music and Arts Festival was held, died of a heart attack on 2/8/1973
1921 ● Alan “Moondog” Freed (Albert James Freed) → Superstar radio DJ, coined term “rock & roll”, TV and film cameo actor, died from liver failure 1/20/1965.
1928 ● Jerry “Mr. Smooth” Wallace → Mildly successful pop crooner, “Primrose Lane” (#8, 1959), switched to country in the late 60s and scored four Country Top 25 hits, died of heart failure on 5/5/2008
1932 ● Jesse Belvin → Early and underappreciated R&B/soul singer and songwriter, “Goodnight My Love” (R&B #7, 1956), co-wrote “Earth Angel” for The Penguins (#8, 1955), killed in a car crash on 2/6/1960 during a career upswing
1939 ● Cindy Birdsong → R&B/soul vocals for Patti LaBelle & The Bluebelles, “I Sold My Heart To The Junkman” (#15, 1962), replaced Flo Ballard in The Supremes in 1967, “River Deep, Mountain High” (#14, 1971), participates in reunions of both bands
1942 ● Dave Clark → Frontman and drummer for Brit Invasion pop-rock Dave Clark Five, “Catch Us If You Can” (#4, 1965) and 11 other Top 25 hits in the US
1946 ● Carmine Appice → Drummer for hard psych rock/proto-metal Vanilla Fudge, “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” (#6, 1968), formed boogie-rock Cactus in 1972, then “super” trio Beck, Bogert & Appice, “Superstition” (1973) and the Rod Stewart band
1946 ● Harry Ray → Vocals in R&B/soul trio The Moments, “Love On A Two-Way Street” (#3, 1970), then name change to Ray, Goodman & Brown, “Special Lady” (#5, 1979), died on 10/1/1992
1949 ● Don Johnson → Star of the 80s cop show Miami Vice and one hit wonder pop singer, “Heartbeat” (#5, 1986)
1955 ● Paul Simonon → Bassist for influential and acclaimed punk-ska-dance-rock The Clash, “Rock The Casbah” (#8, 1982)
1957 ● Tim Reynolds → Multi-instrumental musician and songwriter, sessions and tours with the Dave Matthews Band (“Space Between” #22, 2002) and permanent lead guitarist since 2008
1960 ● Anthony “Tich” Critchlow → Drummer in Brit dance-pop-funk Living In A Box, “Living In A Box” (#17, 1987)
1961 ● Nick Beggs → Bassist for one hit wonder New Wave light synth-bubblegum-pop Kajagoogoo, “Too Shy” (#5, 1983)
1979 ● Edele Lynch → Vocals in Irish one hit wonder girl-group B*Witched, “C’est La Vie” (#9, 1999)
1979 ● Keavy Lynch → Vocals in Irish one hit wonder girl-group B*Witched, “C’est La Vie” (#9, 1999)
1980 ● Sergio Pizzorno → Guitar and vocals for Brit alt rock Kasabian, “Club Foot” (Modern Rock #27, 2004)

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