Posts Tagged rock star birthdays this week

This Week’s Birthdays (August 30 – September 5)

[Editor’s Note: This will be the last weekly Dr. Rock’s Blog & Roll – Birthdays which will post on WordPress. Starting September 1, we will no longer parallel post on WordPress and DrRock.com. From then on, all Blog & Roll posts will appear exclusively on DrRock.com. Please note this change and adjust your bookmarks and auto-notifications accordingly. We look forward to welcoming you on DrRock.com.]

Happy Birthday this week to:

August 30
1919 ● Kitty Wells / (Ellen Muriel Deason) → Pioneering country music singer and the first female country star for her barrier-breaking hit “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels (#27, Country #1, 1952), recorded 27 other Country Top 10 hits and received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement award for her 30 year recording career, died from complications of a stroke on 7/16/2012, age 92.
1928 ● Johnny Mann → Composer of film scores and advertising jingles in the 50s, voice of Theodore on the original TV series Alvin & The Chipmunks (1961), music director for the NBC Comedy Hour and The Joey Bishop Show, and frontman for Grammy-winning clean-cut 60s and 70s easy listening Johnny Mann Singers, died of heart failure on 6/18/2014, age 85.
1930 ● Ernie Ball / (Ronald Sherwood Ball) → Musician and business entrepreneur in guitar-related products through his Ernie Ball and Music Man companies, developed and sold the “Slinky” set of guitar strings used by Eric Clapton, Pete Townshend and many current guitarists, continued to be involved with the business until his death after a long illness on 9/9/2004, age 74
1935 ● John Phillips → Known as “Papa John,” singer, songwriter, guitarist, founder and frontman for folk-pop The Mamas & The Papas, “Monday Monday” (#1,1966), died of heart failure on 3/18/2001, age 65
1939 ● John Peel / (John Robert Parker Ravenscroft) → Offshore pirate station Radio London DJ, then from 1967 to 2004 the longest serving BBC Radio 1 and most influential British DJ ever, died in Peru of a heart attack on 10/25/2004, age 65
1941 ● John McNally → Founder, guitarist and singer for Merseybeat band The Searchers, “Needles And Pins” (#13, 1963)
1943 ● Robert Crumb → Artist, comic book and album cover illustrator, founder of the satirical and subversive underground comix movement, developed the “Keep on truckin'” and “Fritz the Cat” characters
1944 ● Chuck Colbert / (Charles Colbert) → Bassist for pop-rock one hit wonder American Breed, “Bend Me Shape Me” (Top 10, 1968)
1945 ● Fred Tackett → Songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, first as a session player for and since 1988 as a full-time member of Southern-fried blues-boogie rock Little Feat, “Dixie Chicken” (1973) and “Hate To Lose Your Lovin'” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1988)
1950 ● Micky Moody → Guitarist in Brit blues-rock Juicy Lucy, covered Bo Diddley‘s classic “Who Do You Love” (UK #14, 1970), left in 1973 for session work, in 1978 joined Whitesnake, “Here I Go Again” (#1, 1987) but left for solo career and sessions
1951 ● Dana / (Rosemary Brown Scallon) → Irish folk-pop singer, won the 1970 Eurovision Song Contest with the worldwide hit “All Kinds Of Everything” (UK #1, 1970), in the 90s shifted to Christian pop music, “As We Lay” (#59, 1997)
1952 ● Kenny Andrews → Singer in Brit doo wop/rock ‘n’ roll revival vocal group Darts, “Don’t Let It Fade Away” (UK #18, 1978)
1953 ● Horace Panter / (Stephen Graham Panter) → Bassist for ska revival/punk rock The Specials, “Ghost Town” (UK #1, 1981), then pop-soul General Public, “I’ll Take You There” (Dance/Club #1, 1994) and The Specials reunion concert, author and special needs teacher
1954 ● Ron Beitle → Drummer with one hit wonder funk-pop Wild Cherry, “Play That Funky Music” (#1, 1976)
1958 ● Martin Jackson → Drummer with post-punk Magazine, “Shot By Both Sides” (UK #41, 1978) and for Brit sophisti-pop Swing Out Sister, “Breakout” (#6, 1987) plus other Manchester New Wave bands
1961 ● Keith McKenzie → Founding member and drummer for Scottish electronic psych/dance rock crossover band The Shamen, “Ebenezer Goode” (UK #1, 1992)
1963 ● Paul Oakenfold → Dance-pop “house” music pioneer and DJ, toured with U2, Perfecto Records founder, producer and remixer for Happy Mondays, Simply Red, M People, New Order, Stone Roses and U2
1964 ● Robert Clivillés → 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)
1966 ● Peter Cunnah → Lead singer for 90s techno-dance-pop D:Ream, “U R The Best Thing” (Dance #1, 1993), solo
1971 ● Lars Frederiksen → Danish-American guitarist and vocalist in punk rock revival Rancid, “Time Bomb” (Modern Rock #8, 1995), producer
1974 ● Rich Cronin → Lead singer and chief songwriter for pop/rap trio LFO (Lyte Funkie Ones or Low Frequency Oscillator), “Summer Girls” (#3, 1999), left the band and attempted a solo career until dying from complications of leukemia on 9/8/2007, age 35
1986 ● George Ross / (George Ryan Ross III) → Lead guitarist and singer for alt rock/pop punk quartet Panic! At The Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (#7, 2006)

August 31
1918 ● Alan Jay Lerner → Grammy-winning stage, screen and pop music lyricist and librettist, songwriting partner of Frederick Loewe, co-wrote dozens of Broadway shows and movies including Brigadoon (1947), My Fair Lady (1956) and Camelot (1960), died from lung cancer on 6/14/1986, age 67
1937 ● Bobby Parker / (Robert Lee Parker) → Electric blues and blues-rock guitarist and songwriter, his lone charting single, “Watch Your Step” (#51, 1961) was covered by The Beatles, Spencer Davis Group, Carlos Santana and others, continued to record and perform regionally until his death from a heart attack on 10/31/2013, age 76
1939 ● Jerry Allison / (Jerry Ivan Allison) → Drummer in rock ‘n’ roll Buddy Holly & The Crickets, co-wrote “That’ll Be The Day” (#1, 1957) and “Peggy Sue” (#3, 1957), after splitting with Holly became de factor leader of The Crickets, but their success was limited
1940 ● Wilton Felder → Founding member and saxophonist with hard bop The Jazz Crusaders (jazz-funk The Crusaders after 1971), “Street Life” (#36, 1979), plus side work as a solo artist and session musician on electric bass for Billy Joel, Steely Dan, Randy Newman and others, died from myeloma on 9/27/2015, age 75
1944 ● Roger Dean → English artist and album cover designer for Asia, Atomic Rooster, Greenslade, Steve Howe, Uriah Heep, Yes and others
1945 ● Van Morrison / (George Ivan Morrison) → Northern Irish singer, songwriter, musician and poet, started as lead singer for Irish garage rock Them, “Here Comes The Night” (#24, UK #2, 1965), then a long and prolific blue eyed soul/rock solo career, “Brown Eyed Girl” (#10, UK #8, 1967) and over 40 albums plus six Grammy Awards
1945 ● Bob Welch → Pop/rock guitarist for pre-superstardom Fleetwood Mac, “Hypnotized” (1973), left in 1974 for largely unsuccessful solo career, “Sentimental Lady” (#8, 1978), committed suicide with a shotgun on 6/7/2012, age 66
1947 ● Peter Gage → Guitarist, pianist, composer and producer, founding member of blue-eyed soul Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band, “Michael (The Lover)” (UK #39, 1966), later co-founded jazz-rock fusion Dada and R&B/horn band Vinegar Joe with Robert Palmer and Elkie Brooks (his future wife), produced songs for Brooks and albums for Joan Armatrading and The Meteors, among others
1948 ● Andy Stein → Classically trained violinist, saxophonist, arranger and composer, started with country-rock/boogie/swing bar band Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen, “Hot Rod Lincoln” (#9, 1972), thereafter in sessions or show bands and recordings with classical greats Itzhak Perlman and Placido Domingo, with pop artists Emmylou Harris, Bob Dylan, Billy Joel and many others, with jazz artists Wynton Marsalis, Manhattan Transfer and multiple others, played with the Prairie Home Companion (PBS-TV) house band for 22 years.
1948 ● Rudolf Schenker → Founder (at age 16), rhythm guitarist and main songwriter for German hard rock/metal Scorpions, “Rock You Like A Hurricane” (#25, 1984)
1955 ● Anthony Thistlethwaite → Multi-instrumentalist for Celtic folk-rock The Waterboys, “Fisherman’s Blues” (Modern Rock #3, 1988), sessions, solo
1957 ● Gina Schock → Drummer for New Wave pop-punk girl group The Go-Go’s, “We Got The Beat”, (#2, 1982), the most successful all-female pop and rock band of all time and the only one to play their own instruments and write their own songs
1957 ● Glenn Tilbrook → Songwriter, guitar and vocals for New Wave pop-rock Squeeze, “Tempted” (#49, 1981)
1959 ● Tony DeFranco → Lead singer for teen bubblegum-pop sibling quintet The DeFranco Family, “Heartbeat-It’s A Lovebeat” (#3, 1973)
1960 ● Chris Whitley / (Christopher Becker Whitley) → Roots and blues-rock guitarist and songwriter with two charting singles in the 90s, “Big Sky Country” (Mainstream Rock #36, 1991) and “Living With The Law” (Mainstream Rock #28, 1991), died from lung cancer on 11/20/2005, age 45
1961 ● Bruce Guthro → Lead vocals and guitar for Scottish Celtic folk-rock Runrig, “An Ubhal As Airde (The Highest Apple)” (UK #18, 1995)
1963 ● Larry Waddell → Keyboards for new jack swing R&B/soul-pop sextet Mint Condition, “What Kind Of Man Would I Be?” (#17, 1996)
1963 ● Reb Beach / (Richard Earl Beach, Jr.) → Berklee College of Music graduate, session guitarist for Chaka Khan, Roger Daltrey and The Bee Gees in the mid-80s, co-founded glam/prog metal Winger (“Headed For A Heartbreak,” #19, Mainstream #8, 1989) in the late 80s, played with several prominent hard rock and metal bands in the 90s, including Alice Cooper, Dokken and Sega, joined reformed Whitesnake in 2002 and currently tours and records with Winger and Whitesnake
1967 ● Gerard Love → Bassist for Scot pre-grunge, then power pop Teenage Fanclub, “Star Sign” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1991)
1969 ● Jeff Russo → Guitarist for Grammy-nominated alt/roots rock Tonic, “If You Could Only See” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1997)
1970 ● Debbie Gibson / (Deborah Ann Gibson) → Teen pop singer-songwriter, “Foolish Beat” (#1, 1988) and seven other Top 25 hits in the late 80s, actress
1977 ● Craig Nicholls → Singer, songwriter, guitarist and frontman for Aussie garage rock revival The Vines, “Get Free” (Mainstream Rock #27, 2002)
1977 ● Del Marquis / (Derek Gruen) → Guitarist for dance-glam-rock Scissor Sisters, “Filthy Gorgeous” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)

September 01
1927 ● Tommy Evans → Bass vocals for R&B/doo wop The Drifters, “Fools Fall In Love” (#69, R&B #10, 1957)
1931 ● Boxcar Willie / (Lecil Travis Martin) → Popular country singer and hobo-garbed persona, regular guest on TV show Hee Haw, charted eight minor Country Top 100 hits, including “Bad News” (Country #36, 1982), perfumed on stage into the 90s and died from leukemia on 4/12/1999, age 67
1932 ● Cherie DeCastro / (Cherie Dawn DeCastro) → Middle of three sisters who formed the 50s Cuban-American pop singing trio The DeCastro Sisters (“Teach Me Tonight,” #2, 1954) and the only one to appear on every recording, TV appearance and stage performance made by the group over several decades, died from pneumonia on 3/14/2010, age 87
1933 ● Conway Twitty / (Harold Lloyd Jenkins) → Early rock ‘n’ roll, R&B and pop singer, “It’s Only Make Believe” (#1, 1958), then 70s and 80s country superstar, “Tight Fittin’ Jeans” (Country #1, 1981) and over 50 other Country #1 hits, died suddenly from an abdominal aneurysm on 6/5/1993, age 59
1933 ● Marshall Lytle → Rock ‘n’ roll bass guitarist and member of Bill Haley & His Comets, played bass on all their hits including “Rock Around The Clock” (#1, 1955), left to form Las Vegas lounge act The Jodimars, died from lung cancer on 5/25/2013, age 79
1944 ● Archie Bell → Frontman for R&B/Philly soul and funk Archie Bell & The Drells, “Tighten Up” (#1, 1968) and twelve additional R&B Top 40 singles
1945 ● Diane Ray → One hit wonder teenaged pop singer, “Please Don’t Talk To The Lifeguard” (#31, 1963)
1945 ● Peter Hewson → Vocals for Brit pop-rock Chicory Tip, “Son Of My Father” (UK #1, 1972), one of the first hit singles to prominently feature a Moog synthesizer
1946 ● Barry Gibb → Vocals and guitar for pop-rock then disco sibling trio The Bee Gees, “Stayin’ Alive” (#1, 1977), as a songwriter wrote or co-wrote dozens of Top 40 hits, including a Number 1 song in each decades from the 60s to the 00s
1946 ● Greg Errico → Drummer for R&B/soul-funk Sly & The Family Stone, “Family Affair” (#1, 1971), toured Weather Report in 1973, played with David Bowie‘s band in 1974, has toured or played with numerous other rock and funk acts, including Santana, the Jerry Garcia Band, Tower of Power, and Journey
1949 ● Russell Field → Guitarist for Brit rock ‘n’ roll revival Showaddywaddy, “Under The Moon Of Love” (UK #1, 1976) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles
1955 ● Bruce Foxton → Bass, vocals and songwriter for Brit punk-rock/mod revival The Jam, “Town Called Malice” (Mainstream Rock #31, 1982) and the reformed late 80s version of Irish punk rock Stiff Little Fingers
1957 ● Gloria Estefan / (Gloria María Milagrosa Fajardo García) → Seven-time Grammy-winning Cuban/American singer and songwriter, lead vocals for Latin dance-pop Miami Sound Machine, “Anything For You” (#1, 1988), solo with multiple Top 10 hits, including salsa/disco revival “Oye!” (Dance/Club #1, 1998)
1960 ● Cass / (Cass Lewis) → Bassist for Brit alt rock/metal Skunk Anansie, “All I Want” (UK #14, 1996)
1965 ● Craig McLachlan → Aussie TV actor and pop singer, covered Bo Diddley‘s “Mona” (UK #2, 1990)
1970 ● Spigg Nice / (Ronald Blackwell) → DJ and rapper for influential 90s gangsta rap The Lost Boyz, “Music Makes Me High” (#51, Dance/Club #3, Rap #5, 1996), tried and sentenced in 2004 to 37 years in prison for multiple bank robberies in New Jersey
1973 ● J.D. Fortune / (Jason Dean Bennison) → Canadian singer and winner of the 2005 CBS reality TV series Rock Star: INXS, since then has fronted Aussie New Wave dance-groove-pop INXS, “Pretty Vegas” (#37, Hot Digital #9, 2005)
1976 ● Babydaddy / (Scot Hofman) → Bassist for dance-glam-rock Scissor Sisters, “Filthy Gorgeous” (Dance/Club #1, 2005)
1976 ● Peter Brown → Drummer for post-grunge Wheatus, “Teenage Dirtbag” (Modern Rock #7, 2001)
1984 ● Joseph Mark Trohman → Guitarist for alt rock/punk-pop Fall Out Boy, “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race” (#2, 2007)

September 02
1914 ● Booker T. Laury / (Lawrence Laury) → Overlooked Memphis blues, gospel and boogie-woogie piano player in the barrelhouse style with a performing and recording career that spanned nearly 60 years, but only got to recorded his own solo album in 1990 at the age of 76 and never achieved fame nor fortune, died of cancer on 9/23/1995, age 81
1925 ● Hugo Montenegro → Composer, arranger and orchestra conductor primarily for film soundtracks, including “The Good, The Bad And The Ugly” (#2, 1968), died from emphysema on 2/6/1981, age 55
1925 ● Russ Conway / (Trevor Herbert Stanford) → Pop music pianist and composer, instrumental “Side Saddle” (UK #1, 1959) plus 17 other UK Top 40 singles, died on 11/16/2000, age 75
1932 ● Emil Richards / (Emilio Joseph Radocchia) → Veteran vibraphonist, percussionist, bandleader and session musician whose finger-snapping kept time on The Addams Family TV theme song, whose bongo playing underscored the Mission Impossible theme, and who performed as part of the Wrecking Crew team of L.A. studio musicians, appearing on thousands of recordings by George Harrison, Quincy Jones, Steely Dan, Frank Zappa and scores of others, issued nine LPs as frontman for the Microtonal Blues Band and other groups, collected over 350 world music instruments and eventually donated or sold the collection before dying from undisclosed causes on 12/13/2019, age 87.
1933 ● Richard Lewis → Tenor vocals for one hit wonder R&B/doo wop quartet The Silhouettes, “Get A Job” (#1, 1958)
1938 ● Judy Clay / (Judith Grace Guions) → R&B/soul and gospel singer best known for her duets with Billy Vera as The Sweet Inspirations, the first interracial singing duo, “Storybook Children” (#54, R&B #20, 1968), recorded several other minor hits as a solo artist and turned to session work for Ray Charles, Van Morrison and others, died from injuries in a car accident on 7/19/2001, age 62
1939 ● Bobby Purify / (Robert Lee Dickey) → With cousin James Purify, R&B/Southern soul duo James & Bobby Purify, “I’m Your Puppet” (#6, 1966)
1939 ● Sam Gooden → Vocals for Chicago soul/doo wop The Impressions, “It’s All Right” (#4, 1963)
1940 ● Jimmy Clanton → Swamp pop teen idol singer and songwriter, “Just A Dream” (#4, 1958), continues today on the oldies circuit
1943 ● Joe Simon → R&B and country-pop crossover baritone singer, “The Chokin’ Kind” (#13, R&B #1, 1969) and 33 other R&B Top 40 singles
1943 ● Roz Ashford-Holmes / (Rosalind Ashford-Holmes) → Founding member and alto vocalist for Motown R&B/gospel-soul girl group Martha & The Vandellas, “(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave” (#4, 1963)
1945 ● Marty Grebb / (Martin Joseph Grebb) → Multi-instrumentalist musician, played keyboard for Chicago-based pop-horn-rock The Buckinghams (“Kind Of A Drag,” #1, 1967) in 1966-1968, later toured with Leon Russell, Elton John, Chicago, and most notably Bonnie Raitt as a member of her band for 25 years, appeared on over 30 albums as a sessionman and issued two of his own in the 90s, most recently played in The Weight Band, a collection of former members of The Band, with whom he cut two albums in the 90s, developed cancer in ca. 2015 and died from an apparent suicide on 1/1/2020, age 74.
1946 ● Billy Preston / (William Everett Preston) → Child prodigy pianist and Grammy-winning gospel-rooted R&B/soul-funk keyboardist, singer and songwriter, “Will It Go Round In Circles” (#1, 1972) and nine other Top 40 hits, in-demand session musician for Little Richard, Ray Charles and others, the only musician to be credited on a Beatles recording other than the band’s four members (“Let It Be” is listed as Beatles with Billy Preston), fell into a coma following a pericarditis attack at a drug rehabilitation center and died seven months later on 6/6/2006, age 59
1951 ● Mik Kaminski / (Michael Kaminski) → Violinist for pop-rock Electric Light Orchestra, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (#4, 1979) and 26 other Top 40 hits, later co-founded one hit wonder pop Violinski, “Clog Dance” (UK #17, 1979)
1952 ● Fritz McIntyre → Keyboards for Brit soul-pop Simply Red, “Holding Back The Years” (#1, 1986)
1953 ● John Zorn → Avant-garde and experimental music composer, arranger and producer, performed on scores of albums as a solo artist or with multiple musicians in a broad range of genres, composed film scores and TV jingles and produced the Filmworks 25-volume collection of movie soundtracks
1957 ● Steve Porcaro / (Steven Maxwell Porcaro) → Founding member, keyboards and songwriter for pop/arena rock Toto (“Africa,” #1, 1982), younger brother of bandmates Jeff and Mike Porcaro, son of jazz/pop drummer Joe, left the band in 1987 for a solo career, songwriting and film score composing, session work for Yes, Michael Jackson and Jefferson Airplane, and producing for and collaborating with his daughter Heather and others, rejoined Toto for tours in 2010 and 2015.
1958 ● Jerry Augustyniak / (Jerome Stanley Augustyniak) → Drummer for folk-pop 10,000 Maniacs, “These Are Days” (Alt-Rock #1, 1992)
1959 ● Paul Deakin → Drummer for Grammy-winning country-rock The Mavericks, “All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down” (Country #13, 1996)
1966 ● Dino Cazares → Co-founder and guitarist for industrial metal Fear Factory (“Shock,” Mainstream Rock #16, 1998) as well as metal bands Nailbomb, Asesino, Brujeria and Divine Heresy, perfected the technique of using digital modeling processors in his guitar work
1969 ● K-Ci Hailey / (Cedric Hailey) → With brother Joel, vocals in R&B/electro-dance “bad boy” quartet Jodeci, “Lately” (#4, 1993), left with Joel to form romantic soul duo K-Ci & JoJo, “All My Life” (#1, 1998)
1975 ● Tony Thompson → Lead vocalist for R&B/New Jack Swing quintet Hi-Five, “I Like The Way (The Kissing Game)” (#1, 1991), died after accidentally inhaling Freon from an air conditioning unit on 6/1/2007, age 31
1987 ● Spencer James Smith → Drummer for alt rock/pop punk quartet Panic! At The Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (#7, 2006)

September 03
1915 ● Memphis Slim / (John Peter Chatman) → Jump blues pianist, singer, composer and bandleader, his blues standard “Everyday I Have The Blues ” (1949) has been a Billboard R&B Chart Top 10 single for four other artists, including B. B. King, died from renal failure on 2/24/1988, age 72
1918 ● Donna King / (Donna Olivia Driggs Conkling) → Vocalist for complex and sophisticated four-part harmony 30s, 40s and 50s Big Band/pop sibling singing group The King Sisters, “The Hut-Sut Song” (Top 30, 1944), recorded with her sisters on hundreds of albums and numerous radio specials over three decades and in the musical-variety TV program The King Family Show (1966-1969) and holiday specials thereafter, died from natural causes on 6/20/2007, age 88
1925 ● Hank Thompson / (Henry William Thompson) → Plaintive-singing country-pop, honky tonk and Western swing singer, songwriter and bandleader with 29 Country Top 10 hits and five crossover hits in a 50-year recording career, including “The Wild Side Of Life” (#27, Country #1, 1952), inspiration for the lead character in the 2009 film Crazy Heart starring Jeff Bridges, performed until a month before he died from lung cancer on 11/6/2007, age 82
1933 ● Tompall Glaser / (Thomas Paul Glaser) → “Outlaw country” singer, guitarist, songwriter and key figure in the 1970s counter-culture movement of country musicians who eschewed mainstream Nashville principles for greater artist control and freedom, co-wrote “The Streets Of Baltimore” (Country #1, 1966) for Bobby Bare, joined with brothers Chuck and Jim in sibling trio The Glaser Brothers for 16 albums and 24 charting singles between 1960 and 1982 (“Lovin’ Her Was Easier (Than Anything I’ll Ever Do Again),” Country #2, 1981), the trio also operated Glaser Sound Studios in Nashville (aka “Hillbilly Central” and a focal point for the movement), best known for teaming with Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Jessi Colter on the groundbreaking 1976 album Wanted! The Outlaws, the first country album to sell over a million copies, his highest charting solo single was a cover of Shel Silverstein‘s “Put Another Log on the Fire (Male Chauvinist National Anthem)” (Country #21, 1973), died after a long illness on 8/13/2013, age 79.
1934 ● Freddie King (Freddy Christian) / (Fred Christian) → Nicknamed the “Texas Cannonball”, legendary electric blues guitarist and singer, “Hide Away” (#29, 1961), died from heart failure on 12/28/1976, age 42
1939 ● Joe Frank Carollo → Bass guitarist in studio instrumental pop-rock The T-Bones (“No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach’s In),” #3, 1966), which morphed into pop-rock trio Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds with the pop-rock hits “Don’t Pull Your Love” (#4, 1971) and “Fallin’ In Love” (#1, 1975)
1940 ● Shadow Morton / (George Francis Morton) → Record producer, songwriter and manager loosely credited with creating the “girl group” sound in the 60s for his pioneering work with then-unknown the Shangri-Las, “Leader Of The Pack” (#1, 1964), also worked with Janis Ian (“Society’s Child,” #14, 1967) and produced several albums for psych-rock Vanilla Fudge (“You Keep Me Hangin’ On,” #1, 1966) and The New York Dolls, among others, died from cancer on 2/14/2013, age 35
1942 ● Al Jardine / (Alan Charles Jardine) → Founding member, guitarist and occasional lead vocals for surf-pop-rock The Beach Boys, “Good Vibrations” (#1, 1966), solo
1942 ● Kenny Pickett → Pop music songwriter and original lead vocalist for underappreciated and little known (except in Germany) Britbeat/power pop The Creation, “Painter Man” (UK #36, GER #8, 1967), after the band’s dissolution continued as a songwriter and became Jimmy Page‘s guitar technician, issued several solo albums and enjoyed a career resurgence in the 90s, died on 1/10/1997, age 54
1943 ● Mick Farren / (Michael Anthony Farren) → Anti-establishment singer, songwriter, journalist, rock music critic and historian, bandleader for proto-punk/acid rock The Deviants and three albums, issued two solo albums, including Vampires Stole My Lunch Money (1978) and several singles, including “Broken Statue” (1978), died following a heart attack on 7/27/2013, age 69
1945 ● George Biondo → Bass and vocals for Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968)
1945 ● Mike Harrison → Lead singer for British Invasion blues-rock The V.I.P.’s, then hard rock/blues rock Art and later Spooky Tooth, solo
1946 ● “Skinny Dennis” Sanchez / (Dennis Sanchez) → Tall and thin journeyman L.A.-area country-rock upright bass session guitarist who played with numerous country-rock and “outlaw” country artists, including Guy Clark, Steve Earle and Townes Van Zandt, wrote “Bus Stop Coffee” (covered by Richard Dobson in 1975) and was referenced in Clark‘s venerable “L.A. Freeway” (Jerry Jeff Walker, #98, 1972), suffered from Marfan syndrome (genetic disease affecting the body’s connective tissue) and died onstage from heart failure on 3/20/1975, age 28.
1947 ● Eric Bell → Founding member and original guitarist for underrated Irish hard rock Thin Lizzy, “The Boys Are Back In Town” (#12, 1976), frontman for the Eric Bell Band
1948 ● Don Brewer → Founding member and drummer for hard rock/early heavy metal power trio Grand Funk Railroad, “We’re An American Band” (#1, 1973)
1950 ● dUg Pinnick / (Doug Pinnick) → Bass guitar, songwriting and vocals for progressive metal/Christian rock King’s X, “It’s Love” (Mainstream Rock #6, 1990)
1952 ● Leroy Smith → Founding member and keyboardist for Philly-style Brit R&B/soul Sweet Sensation, “Sad Sweet Dreamer” (#14, UK #1, 1975), found dead in his apartment from bronchopneumonia on 1/15/2009, age 56.
1955 ● Steve Jones → Guitarist for premier punk rockers the Sex Pistols, “God Save The Queen” (UK #2, 1977), later The Professionals and Neurotic Outsiders, solo plus collaborations and sessions for Thin Lizzy, Joan Jett, Megadeath and others
1957 ● Suzanne Freitag → Keyboards for German synth-pop Propaganda, “p.Machinery” (Dance/Club #10, 1986)
1960 ● Perry Bamonte → Former keyboardist and songwriter for post-punk art-glam-goth rock The Cure, “Friday I’m In Love” (Modern Rock #1, 1992), left in 2005 after being fired inexplicably and now plays bass in London-based rock band Love Amongst Ruin
1962 ● Lester Noel → Vocals for Brit electronic dance-pop Beats International, “Dub Be Good To Me” (Dance/Club #1, UK #1, 1990)
1963 ● Jonathan Segel → French-born multi-instrumentalist and composer for eclectic alt rock pop-ska-punk-folk fusion Camper Van Beethoven, “Take The Skinheads Bowling” (1985) and others
1965 ● Vaden Todd Lewis → Vocals and guitar for post-grunge alt rock Toadies, “Possum Kingdom” (Modern Rock #4, 1995) and Burden Brothers, “Beautiful Night” (Mainstream Rock #33, 2004)
1971 ● Mike Wengren → Drummer for Chicago-based heavy metal Disturbed, “Another Way To Die” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2010)
1973 ● David Mead → Light pop-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Girl On The Roof” (2001)
1973 ● Jennifer Paige → One hit wonder dance-pop diva, “Crush” (#3, 1998)
1975 ● Redfoo / (Stefan Kendal Gordy) → With his nephew, Skyblu (Skyler Austen Gordy), one half the electropop, hip house duo LMFAO, “Party Rock Anthem” (worldwide #1, 2011), youngest son of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, Jr.
1979 ● Tomo Mili?evi? / (Tomislav Milichevich Sarajevo) → Lead guitarist for indie pop-rock 30 Seconds To Mars, “From Yesterday” (Alt Rock #1, 2006)
1980 ● Cone McCaslin / (Jay McCaslin) → Bassist for Canadian indie punk-pop Sum 41, “We’re All To Blame” (Mainstream Rock #36, 2004)
1984 ● Robert Curry → Singer with pre-fab contemporary R&B quintet Day26, “Got Me Going” (#79, 2008), the group was formed at the conclusion of the TV show Making the Band 4 on August 26, 2007

September 04
1930 ● Jerry Ragovoy / (Jordan Ragovoy) → Songwriter and record producer, sometimes under the pseudonym Norman Meade, co-wrote “Time Is On My Side” (The Rolling Stones, #6, 1964), “Piece Of My Heart” (Big Brother & The Holding Company, #12, 1968) and dozens of other songs for various artists in different genres, mostly in the 60s and 70s, died following a stroke on 7/13/2011, age 80
1940 ● Sonny Charles / (Charles Hemphill) → R&B/soul singer and frontman for 60s-70s blue-eyed soul Checkmates Ltd. (“Black Pearl,” #13, R&B #8, 1969), left in 1973 for a solo career (“Put It In A Magazine,” #40, R&B #2, 1983), joined the Steve Miller Band (“Abracadabra,” #1, 1982) in 2008
1942 ● Bubba Knight / (Merald Knight, Jr.) → Brother of Gladys Knight, vocals and de facto leader and manager of R&B/soul-pop Gladys Knight & The Pips, “Midnight Train To Georgia” (#1, 1973)
1944 ● Gene Parsons → Drummer for seminal folk-country-rock The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man” (#1, 1965), then country-rock Flying Burrito Brothers, solo
1945 ● Danny Gatton → Grammy-nominated virtuoso rockabilly-rooted session guitarist who blended country, jazz, pop and rock to create a distinctive style, frontman for country-rock the Fat Boys, Rolling Stone magazine’s #63 greatest guitarist of all time, died from an unexplained, self-inflicted gunshot wound in his garage on 10/4/1994, age 49
1946 ● Gary Duncan / (Eugene Duncan, Jr. (Gary Ray Grubb)) → Lead and rhythm guitarist for San Francisco-based psychedelic folk-rock Quicksilver Messenger Service, “Fresh Air” (#49, 1970), formed and fronted his own Quicksilver in the 80s and rejoined QMS in the 00s, suffered a seizure and multiple cardiac arrests after a fall and was in a coma for 10 days before dying on 6/29/2019, age 72.
1946 ● Greg Elmore → Drummer for psychedelic folk-rock Quicksilver Messenger Service, “Fresh Air” (#49, 1970)
1950 ● Ronald LaPread → Bass and vocals for Grammy-winning Motown R&B/soul-funk Commodores, “Three Times A Lady” (#1, 1978)
1951 ● Martin Chambers → Drummer for post-punk New Wave hard pop-rock The Pretenders, “Back On The Chain Gang” (#5, 1982)
1960 ● Kim Thayil → Guitarist for seminal grunge-rock group Soundgarden, “Black Hole Sun” (Mainstream Rock #1,1994)
1969 ● Sasha / (Alexander Coe) → Welsh electronic dance-pop/house music producer and DJ, “Be As One” (UK #17, 1996), remixed tracks for Madonna and The Chemical Brothers, among others
1970 ● Igor Cavalera → Original drummer in Brazilian heavy metal/thrash metal Sepultura, “Roots Bloody Roots” (UK #19, 1996)
1971 ● Ty Longley → Guitarist and songwriter for hard rock/heavy metal Great White, “Once Bitten Twice Shy” (#5, 1989), died along with 100 fans in a Rhode Island night club fire in 2/20/2003, age 31
1972 ● Guto Pryce → Bassist for Welsh electro-psych rock Super Furry Animals, “Northern Lites” (UK #11, 1999)
1974 ● Carmit Bachar → Vocals for burlesque dance-pop girl troupe The Pussycat Dolls, “Don’t Cha” (#2, 2005)
1975 ● Mark Ronson → Brit music producer, DJ, guitarist, co-founder of Allido Records and frontman for Business Intl., “International Affair” (Rhythmic Top 40 #21, 2003), produced albums for Christina Aguilera, Amy Winehouse and others
1977 ● Ian Grushka → Founding member and bassist for pop-punk New Found Glory, “My Friends Over You” (Alt Rock #5, 2002)
1980 ● Dan Miller → Vocals for pre-fab teen idol boy-band O-Town, “All Or Nothing” (#3, 2001)
1981 ● Beyoncé / (Beyoncé Giselle Knowles) → Lead vocals for R&B/dance-pop girl group Destiny’s Child, “Say My Name” (#1, 2000), then 14 Grammy-winning solo career, “Crazy In Love” (#1, 2003), actress and fashion designer

September 05
1912 ● John Cage → Avant-garde artist, experimental music composer and pioneer of numerous non-standard techniques that pushed at the edge of rational forms of musical expression, created electroacoustic music and explored composition derived from Zen Buddhism, professor of music at Ohio Wesleyan University from the late 50s until his death on 8/12/1992, age 79
1936 ● Willie Woods → R&B guitarist who hooked up with his teenage chum Autry DeWalt (Junior Walker) in the 50s and eventually formed R&B/soul Jr. Walker & The All Stars, recording “Shotgun” (#4, 1965) and eleven other Top 40 hits in the 60s through 1972, toured on the oldies circuit until the mid-90s, died of lung cancer on 5/27/97, age 60.
1939 ● John Stewart → Singer, songwriter and guitarist for definitive folk-pop The Kingston Trio, “Tom Dooley” (#1, 1958) and nine other Top 40 hits, solo, “Gold” (#5, 1979), wrote “Daydream Believer” for The Monkees (#1, 1967), died from a brain aneurism on 1/19/2008, age 68
1941 ● Joe Long / (Joseph LaBracio) → Classically-trained bassist best known for playing electric bass guitar for Top 40 pop vocals group The Four Seasons (“Let’s Hang On!,” #3, 1965) between 1965 and the mid-70s when he left to form his own rock and jazz bands
1943 ● Speedo / (Joe Frasier) → Lead singer and only black member of racially-integrated R&B/doo wop The Impalas, “Sorry” (I Ran All The Way Home)” (#2, 1959)
1945 ● Al Stewart → Scottish soft rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Year Of The Cat” (#8, 1977)
1946 ● Dean Ford / (Thomas McAleese) → Founding member and lead vocals for Scottish pop-rock The Marmalade, “Reflections Of My Life” (#10, 1970)
1946 ● Loudon Wainwright III → Folk singer/songwriter, “Dead Skunk” (#16, 1973), won Grammy Award in 2009 for the Best Traditional Folk Album, father of neo-folk singers Rufus and Martha Wainwright
1946 ● Freddie Mercury / (Farrokh Bulsara) → Founder and frontman for camp rock/mock-opera/hard pop Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody” (#9, 1976) and “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” (#1, 1980), solo, producer, died from complications of AIDS on 11/24/1991, age 45
1947 ● Mel Collins / (Melvyn Desmond Collins) → Brit saxophonist, flutist and session musician, played the sax solo on The Rolling Stones‘ “Miss You” (#1, 1978), also worked with King Crimson, Camel, The Alan Parsons Project, Eric Clapton, Bad Company, Dire Straits, Tears For Fears and many others
1947 ● Buddy Miles / (George Allen Miles, Jr.) → Funk-rock drummer in Wilson Pickett‘s band, then Electric Flag with Mike Bloomfield, then Band of Gypsys with Jimi Hendrix, then frontman for the Buddy Miles Express, then solo, “Them Changes” (#62, 1971), then sessions and touring with Santana, Phish and others, died of congestive heart disease on 2/26/2008, age 60
1949 ● Clem Clempson / (Dave Clempson) → Lead guitarist for blues-rock power trio Bakerloo, left in 1969 to join jazz-blues-rock fusion Colosseum, in 1971 succeeded Peter Frampton in blues-rock Humble Pie, “Hot “N’ Nasty” (#52, 1972),sessions and film score work
1954 ● Sal Solo / (Christopher Scott Stephens) → Lead vocals for synth-pop new romantic Classix Nouveaux, “Is It A Dream” (UK #11, 1982), then solo career with Christian music
1964 ● Kevin Saunderson → DJ, mixer and producer for Detroit electro-techno/dance-pop duo Inner City, “Big Fun” (Dance-Club #1, 1984)
1966 ● Terry Ellis → Vocals for Grammy-winning female club-dance group En Vogue, “Hold On” (#2, 1990)
1967 ● Arnel Pineda → Filipino-American pop-rock vocalist, co-founded and worked with several local and Southeast Asian bands with regional success, recruited to arena rock Journey in 2007, sang lead vocals on several albums and singles, including the power ballad “After All These Years” (Hot Adult #9, 2008)
1968 ● Brad Wilk → Drummer for Grammy-winning punk/hip hop/thrash metal Rage Against The Machine, “Guerrilla Radio” (Modern Rock #6, 1999) and alt metal Audioslave, “Doesn’t Remind Me” (Mainstream Rock #2, 2005)
1969 ● Dweezil Zappa → Rock guitarist, bandleader, producer, radio/TV host, MTV VJ, movie actor, sessions, son of art rock legend Frank Zappa
1970 ● Fuzz Kmak / (Steve Kmak) → Former bassist for Chicago-based heavy metal Disturbed, “Another Way To Die” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2010)
1980 ● Kevin Simm → Singer for teen dance-pop Liberty X, “Just A Little” (UK #1, 2002)

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This Week’s Birthdays (August 16 – 22)

Happy Birthday this week to:

August 16
1915 ● Al Hibbler → Baritone jazz-pop-R&B singer, first with Duke Ellington‘s orchestra in the 40s, “Do Nothin’ Til You Here From Me” (#6, 1944), then solo, “Unchained Melody” (#3, 1955), died 4/24/2001, age 85
1922 ● Ernie Freeman / (Ernest Aaron Freeman) → Pop and early rock ‘n’ roll bandleader, pianist and session musician, worked on hits by The Platters (“The Great Pretender,” #1, 1956), Dean Martin (“Everybody Loves Somebody,” #1, 1964), Frank Sinatra (“That’s Life,” #4, 1966) and others, wrote film scores and served as musical director at Reprise Records, died at home from a heart attack on 5/16/1981, age 58
1923 ● Johnny Reed → Founding member, bass vocals and double bass for doo wop and “bird group” trendsetting R&B vocal group The Orioles (“Crying In The Chapel,” #11, R&B #1, 1953) last surviving original member of the group when he died on 6/18/2005, age 81
1923 ● Eddie Kirkland → Electric blues guitarist, singer and songwriter known as the “Gypsy of the Blues” for his rigorous touring schedule, released over 30 albums on various labels and toured with John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, English blues-rock band Foghat and others, continued to record, write and tour until his death in a car accident on 2/27/2011, age 87
1931 ● Eydie Gormé / (Edith Gormezano) → Broadway and TV actress, nightclub and Vegas showroom entertainer, Grammy-winning traditional pop singer, “Blame It On The Bossa Nova” (#7, 1963), wife and singing partner of crooner Steve Lawrence, died from undisclosed causes on 8/10/2013, age 82
1934 ● Ketty Lester / (Revoyda Frierson) → One hit wonder pop singer and actress with the crossover cover of “Love Letters” (#5, R&B #2, UK #5, 1962), shifted to a more-R&B style in the late 60s with little commercial success, turned to acting in the 70s and appeared in movies and on TV in various roles
1939 ● Eric Weissberg → Multi-instrumentalist bluegrass musician as a member of folk-pop The Tarriers (“The Banana Boat Song,” #4, 1956) in the 50s and as a sessionman in the 60s, recorded with Judy Collins, John Denver, Bob Dylan and others, famously arranged and played the banjo solo on a version of Arthur Smith‘s “Dueling Banjos” in the film Deliverance (1972) and on the follow-on single (#2, Country #5, 1973) in his own name, toured as a bandleader and recorded as a session player through the 00s, died in a nursing home from Alzheimer’s disease on 3/22/2020, age 80.
1942 ● Barbara George → One hit wonder New Orleans R&B singer with her self-penned crossover hit, “I Know (You Don’t Love Me No More)” (#3, 1961), died from a lung infection on 8/10/2006, age 63
1942 ● Squirrel Lester / (Robert Lester) → Tenor vocals for smooth R&B/Chicago soul The Chi-Lites, “Have You Seen Her?” (#3, 1971), died from liver cancer 1/21/2010, age 67
1945 ● Gary Loizzo → Guitar/vocals and founder, pop-rock one hit wonder American Breed, “Bend Me Shape Me” (Top 10, 1968)
1945 ● Kevin Ayers → Eccentric singer/songwriter and original bassist for Canterbury-scene psych-art-jazz-prog rock fusion Soft Machine, switched to guitar and solo in 1969, has issued more than a dozen albums over 40 years
1946 ● Snowy Fleet / (Gordon Fleet) → Drummer for Aussie-based 60s pop-rock The Easybeats, “Friday On My Mind” (#16, 1967)
1948 ● Barry Hay → Lead vocals and frontman for Dutch hard rock Golden Earring, “Radar Love” (#13, 1974), over 40 hits and 30 gold and platinum albums in the Netherlands
1949 ● Sputnik Spooner / (William Spooner) → Guitarist and founder of camp-rock pop-rock satirists The Tubes, “She’s A Beauty” (#10, 1978), solo
1949 ● Rock Action Asheton / (Scott Asheton) → Drummer for hard rock/proto-punk The Stooges, “I Wanna Be Your Dog” (1969), sessions, died from a heart attack on 3/15/2014, age 64
1953 ● J. T. Taylor / (James Taylor) → Lead singer for jazz-fusion then R&B/funk Kool & The Gang, “Celebration” (#1, 1981), left in 1988 for a largely unsuccessful solo career
1957 ● Tim Farriss → Guitarist for Aussie New Wave dance-groove-pop INXS, “Need You Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1958 ● Madonna / (Madonna Louise Victoria Ciccone) → Film actress, record producer, entrepreneur and dance-pop megastar, “Like A Virgin” (#1, 1984), best selling female rock artist of the 20th century and second (behind Barbra Streisand) top selling US female artist of all time
1960 ● Chris Pedersen → Drummer for eclectic alt rock pop-ska-punk-folk fusion Camper Van Beethoven, “Take The Skinheads Bowling” (1985)
1964 ● Matt Lukin → Bassist for grunge rock Mudhoney, “Suck You Dry” (Modern Rock #23, 1992)
1967 ● MC Remedee / (Debbie Pryce) → Vocals in female rap/house music duo Cookie Crew, “Rok Da House” (UK #5, 1988)
1972 ● Emily Burns Strayer / (Emily Burns Erwin Robison Strayer) → Multi-instrumentalist singer, songwriter and founding member of country-rock girl group Dixie Chicks, “Not Ready To Make Nice” (#4, 2006), formed Court Yard Hounds in 2010 with sister and former Dixie Chicks bandmate Martie Erwin Maguire
1980 ● Bob Hardy → Bassist for Scottish art-pop-rock Franz Ferdinand, “Take Me Out” (Alt Rock #3, 2004)
1980 ● Vanessa Lee Carlton → One hit wonder “new era” female pop-rock singer/songwriter, “A Thousand Miles” (#5, 2002)

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

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

August 19
1935 ● Earl Gaines → Hard-luck soul-blues and electric blues singer, his top charting song, “It’s Love Baby (24 Hours A Day)” (R&B #2, 1955) was credited to the backing band Louis Brooks & The Hi-Toppers, two decades worth of follow-ups were less than successful, left the industry in the late 70s to work as a truck driver, returned in the 90s and recorded several further albums, died from cancer on 12/31/2009, age 74
1939 ● Ginger Baker / (Peter Edward Baker) → One of the first superstar rock drummers, known equally for his jazz-influenced artistry as for his difficult personality, played in jazz ensembles in London during the 50s, joined early Brit blues-rock Blues Incorporated in 1962 and R&B/blues Graham Bond Organisation in 1963, co-founded blues-rock super-trio Cream (“Sunshine Of Your Love,” #5, 1968) and supergroup Blind Faith (US #1 album Blind Faith, 1969), went solo in 1970 and fronted jazz-rock fusion Ginger Baker’s Air Force for a brief period before dropping out of the mainstream to open a recording studio in Lagos, Nigeria, played with various other artists and in Cream spin-offs and reunions until his death from heart failure on 10/6/2019, age 80.
1940 ● Don Fardon / (Donald Arthur Maughn) → Lead singer for 60s Brit mod scene freakbeat The Sorrows (“Take A Heart,” UK #21, 1965), then one hit wonder pop singer with his cover of “(The Lament Of The Cherokee) Indian Reservation” (#20, 1968), continued to perform into the 00s
1940 ● Johnny Nash → Reggae-pop vocalist who was a major force in the mainstreaming of reggae music in the early 70s, “I Can See Clearly Now” (#1, 1972)
1940 ● Roger Cook → British pop music songwriter and performer, as Jonathan was one half the pop vocal duo David & Jonathan, “Michelle” (#18, Adult Contemporary #3, 1966), collaborated with Roger Greenaway (aka David) to pen dozens of pop-rock hit singles, including “Long Cool Woman In A Black Dress” (The Hollies, #2, 1972) and “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing” (The New Seekers, #7, 1971)
1942 ● Bob Kuban → Drummer and frontman for St. Louis-based one hit wonder horn-rock Bob Kuban & The In-Men (“The Cheater,” #12, 1966), continues to perform with various incarnations the band into the 10s
1943 ● Billy J. Kramer / (William Howard Ashton) → Frontman for British Invasion pop-rock The Dakotas, “Little Children” (#7, 1964) and four other Top 40 singles in 1964
1943 ● Edwin Hawkins / (Edwin Reuben Hawkins) → Multiple Grammy-winning contemporary gospel and R&B singer, composer, keyboardist and leader of the gospel-pop Edwin Hawkins Singers, best known for the catchy, unplanned worldwide hit “Oh Happy Day” (#4, R&B #2, CAN #2, UK #2, 1969) but racked up 19 other Grammy gospel nominations and three other wins over a 30-year music career, inducted into the Christian Music Hall of Fame in 2007, died from pancreatic cancer on 1/15/2018, age 74
1945 ● Ian Gillan → Heavy metal vocalist, joined hard rock/prog rock Deep Purple, “Smoke On The Water” (#4, 1973) in 1969 but left in 1973, sang lead on the Jesus Christ Superstar (1971) concept album and Broadway show soundtrack, solo and frontman for the Ian Gillan Band and Gillan, joined Black Sabbath in 1984, reunited with Deep Purple in late-1984
1947 ● George Newsome → Drums and vocals for Brit blues-rock Climax Blues Band, “Couldn’t Get It Right” (#3, 1977)
1948 ● Elliott Lurie → Co-founder, guitarist and singer/songwriter for one hit wonder pop-rock Looking Glass, “Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl)” (#1, 1972), now a movie music composer and arranger
1948 ● Susan Jacks / (Susan Pesklevits) → Canadian pop singer/songwriter with former husband Terry Jacks in pop-rock duo The Poppy Family, “Which Way You Goin’, Billy? (#2, 1969), then solo and songwriting
1951 ● John Deacon → Bassist and songwriter for camp rock/mock-opera/hard pop Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody” (#9, 1976), wrote or co-wrote “Stone Cold Crazy,” “You’re My Best Fiend,” “Another One Bites The Dust” (#1, 1980) and others, retired from the music business in the 90s
1963 ● Joey Tempest / (Joakim Larsson) → Vocals for Swedish hard rock/glam-metal Europe, “The Final Countdown” (#8, 1986)
1966 ● Lee Ann Womack → Grammy-winning traditional country and pop crossover singer/songwriter, “I Hope You Dance” (#14, Country #1, 2000), actress
1970 ● Fat Joe / (Joseph Cartagena) → Hip hop entertainer and entrepreneur, East Coast/gangsta/Latino rapper, “What’s Luv” (#2, 2002), founder and CEO of hip hop record label Terror Squad Entertainment
1970 ● MC Eric / (Eric Martin) → Vocals for Belgian studio-based electro-dance-pop “house” music Technotronic, “Pump Up The Jam” (#2, 1989), solo, producer, teacher
1976 ● Régine Chassagne → Singer, multi-instrumentalist musician and co-founding member, with her husband Win Butler, of Grammy-winning Canadian alt/indie rock Arcade Fire, “Keep The Car Running” (Alt #32, 2007)
1980 ● Darius Campbell-Danesh → Scottish stage actor, UK TV Popstars contestant in 2001 and folk-pop singer, “Colourblind” (UK #1, 2002)
1983 ● Missy Higgins / (Melissa Higgins) → Australian pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Where I Stood” (Adult Top 40 #6, Aussie #10, 2006)
1989 ● Lil’ Romeo / (Percy Miller, Jr.) → Pre-teen rapper, “My Baby” (#3, Rap #1, 2001), actor and host of his own Nickelodeon TV show Romeo, son of hardcore rapper Master P (Percy Miller)

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

August 21
1904 ● Count Basie / (William Allen Basie) → Renowned nine-time Grammy-winning swing era jazz, blues and swing pianist, composer and bandleader, “April In Paris” (#28, R&B #8, 1956), led his Count Basie Orchestra for nearly 50 years, died of pancreatic cancer on 4/26/1984 , age 79
1907 ● Hy Zaret / (Hyram Harry Zaritsky) → Tin Pan Alley lyricist and composer with multiple hits in the 40s and 50s, best known as the co-author of the Academy Award-winning 1955 hit “Unchained Melody,” one of the 25 most recorded songs of the 20th Century with over 300 versions released by The Righteous Brothers (#4, 1965), Elvis Presley (Country #6, 1978), U2 and many others, also wrote children’s songs, including “Why Does The Sun Shine?” (1959, covered by alt-rock They Might Be Giants in 1993), died from natural causes on 7/2/207, age 99.
1938 ● Kenny Rogers / (Kenneth Ray Rogers) → Grammy-winning singer, songwriter and hugely successful country-pop crossover star with dozens of pop and country Top 10 hits, including a pair of double-#1s, “Lady” (#1, Country #1, 1980) and “Islands In The Stream” (#1, Country #1, 1983), started as a solo artist in the 50s, joined folk-revival The New Christy Minstrels (“Green, Green,” #14, 1963) in the mid-60s, co-founded and fronted country-pop The First Edition (“Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town,” #6, 1969) from 1967-1976, resumed his solo career and scored nine Top 10 pop and 17 #1 country hits, starred in films (Six Pack, 1982) and the 1980-1994 TV series based on his signature song, “The Gambler” (#16, Country #1, 1978), co-founded a chain of fast-food restaurants, recorded and performed until retiring for health reasons in 2017, died from complications related to the COVID-19 virus on 3/20/2020, age 81.
1939 ● Harold Reid / (Harold Wilson Reid) → Bass vocals, songwriter and de facto leader of country-gospel-pop crossover harmony quartet The Statler Brothers (Grammy-winning “Flowers On The Wall,” #4, Country #2, 1965), the group was a force on the country charts for 25 years with 32 Country Top 10 singles between 1965 and 1989 – he and his younger brother, Don, were the only brothers in the group and no one was named Statler – retired after the band’s 38th studio album and farewell tour in 2002, died of kidney failure on 4/24/2020, age 80.
1943 ● Clydie King / (Clydie Mae King) → R&B/pop singer with over 30 singles as a solo artist, the lead singer in various groups and under the pseudonym Brown Sugar, scored a lone pop hit “Loneliness (Will Bring Us Together Again)” (#44, 1973), best known as a backing singer for dozens of major artists such as Steely Dan, The Rolling Stones and Lynyrd Skynyrd, joined Bob Dylan‘s band in 1980 and had a romantic relationship with him through the late 80s, dropped out of the music business for health reasons and died from complications of a blood infection acquired during dialysis treatment on 1/7/2019, age 75.
1944 ● Jackie DeShannon / (Sharon Lee Myers) → Early female rock ‘n’ roll singer/songwriter, toured with The Beatles in 1964, co-wrote songs with Jimmy Page and Randy Newman, moved to folk-pop sounds in the late-60s, wrote and sang “Put A Little Love In Your Heart” (#4, 1969), co-wrote Grammy-winning “Bette Davis Eyes” for Kim Carnes (#1, 1981)
1947 ● Carl Giammarese → Guitarist and co-founder of Chicago-based pop-horn-rock The Buckinghams, “Kind Of A Drag” (#1, 1967), continues to front the band on the oldies circuit
1952 ● Glenn Hughes → Bass and vocals for Brit hard rock Trapeze, left in 1973 to join Deep Purple, “Smoke On The Water” (#4, 1973), sang for Black Sabbath on the Seventh Star album (1986), various solo and collaboration albums, currently fronts hard rock supergroup Black Country Communion
1952 ● Joe Strummer / (John Graham Mellor) → Frontman and principal songwriter of influential and acclaimed punk-ska-dance-rock The Clash, “Rock The Casbah” (#8, 1982), actor, film score composer, radio host, solo and frontman for The Mescaleros, died of a heart attack on 12/22/2002, age 50
1954 ● Steve Smith → Drummer for arena rock Journey, “Who’s Crying Now” (#4, 1981) during the band’s peak years in the late-70s and early 80s, founded fusion group Vital Information in 1983, joined fusion group Steps Ahead in 1986, in 2001 voted into the Top 25 Drummers of All Time list in Modern Drummer magazine
1957 ● Budgie / (Peter Edward Clarke) → Drummer for punk then dance-rock Siouxsie & The Banshees, “Kiss Them For Me”, (#23, 1991), side project The Creatures, “Right Now” (UK #14, 1983), toured with John Cale, sessions
1957 ● Kim Sledge → Lead vocals for family R&B/disco girl-group Sister Sledge and the disco anthem “We Are Family” (#2, 1979) plus ten other R&B Top 10 hits
1971 ● Master H. / (Liam Howlett) → MC and vocals for “big beat” electronic dance/rap The Prodigy, “Firestarter” (#30, 1996), producer and music DJ
1979 ● Kelis / (Kelis Rogers) → Urban contemporary R&B vocalist, “Milkshake” (#3, Dance/Club #1, 2003), former spouse of rapper Nas
1984 ● Melissa Schuman → Vocals for R&B/dance-pop all-girl quartet Dream, “He Loves U Not” (#2, 2000), solo, actress
1986 ● Conor Clapton → Son of rock superstar Eric Clapton and subject of his father’s lamenting, Grammy-winning song “Tears In Heaven” (#1, 1992) about the toddler’s tragic death from a fall out of a 53rd floor apartment window in New York City on 3/20/1991, age 4

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

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This Week’s Birthdays (June 28 – July 4)

[Please note: On June 30, Dr. Rock’s Blog & Roll will no longer be available on WordPress. You will have access via DrRock.com for your dose of great music from the 60s, 70s and 80s, the BEST music ever made! Please make a note of this and switch your bookmarks accordingly.]

Happy Birthday this week to:

June 28
1902 ● Richard Rodgers → Stage, film and TV music composer and lyricist with over 900 titles and 43 musicals, collaborator with Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein III on some of the best-known songs in popular music, died on 12/30/1979, age 77
1936 ● Cathy Carr / (Angelina Catherine Cordovano) → USO-tour and Big Band vocalist, later one hit wonder languid pop singer with her rendition of “Ivory Tower” (#2, 1956), continued to record through the 60s with little notice, died from unspecified causes on 11/22/1988, age 52
1943 ● Bobby Harrison → Drummer for prog/psych rock Procol Harum, “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” (#5, 1967), formed psych rock Freedom in 1968
1945 ● David Knights → Original bass guitarist for prog/psych rock Procol Harum, “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” (#5, 1967), left in 1969
1959 ● Clint Boon → Keyboards for Brit psych-alt rock Inspiral Carpets, “Two Worlds Collide” (Modern Rock #8, 1992), formed The Clint Boon Experience in 1995
1963 ● Beverley Craven → Brit easy listening singer/songwriter and balladeer, “Promise Me” (UK #3, 1991) and “Holding On” (Adult Contemporary #30, 1992)
1963 ● Charles Clouser → Keyboardist and drummer for industrial rock Nine Inch Nails, “The Day The World Went Away” (#17, 1999), producer and sound engineer for DeftonesWhite ZombieMarilyn MansonRammstein and others
1965 ● Saul Davis → Guitar and violin for Brit alt pop-rock James, “Sit Down” (UK #2, 1991) and “Laid” (#61, Modern Rock #3, 1994)
1966 ● Bobby Bare, Jr. → Country and roots rock guitarist, singer and songwriter, at age 8 received a Grammy nomination with his father, Bobby Bare, for the duet “Daddy What If” (#41, Country #2, 1974), frontman for alt country-rock Young Criminals Starvation League and indie rock Bare Jr.
1971 ● Ray Slijngaard → Vocals for Euro dance-pop 2 Unlimited, “Tribal Dance” (Dance/Club #7, 1993)
1977 ● Mark Stoermer → Bass guitarist for pop-alt hard rock The Killers, “Mr. Brightside” (#10, 2005)
1979 ● Tim McCord → Bassist for Grammy-winning goth-pop-metal Evanescence, “Bring Me To Life” (#5, 2003)
1986 ● Kellie Dawn Pickler → American Idol runner-up and contemporary country/country-pop singer with eight Country Top 40 hits, including “Best Days Of Your Life” (Country #12, 2008) from the Country #1 (Pop #9) album Kellie Pickler

June 29
1901 ● Nelson Eddy / (Nelson Ackerman Eddy) → Classically-trained baritone pop and opera crossover singer and movie actor with nearly 300 recordings and 19 films, often with singing partner Jeanette MacDonald, died hours after suffering a cerebral hemorrhage while performing in Florida on 3/6/1967, age 65
1910 ● Frank Loesser / (Frank Henry Loesser) → Tony- and Oscar-winning Broadway and film composer, wrote the lyrics and music to Guys And Dolls and How To Success In Business Without Really Trying, wrote “Baby It’s Cold Outside” (1944), the Academy Awards best song of the year, died from lung cancer on 7/26/1969, age 59
1911 ● Bernard Herrmann / (Max Herrmann) → Innovative, Academy Award-winning film score composer best known for composing the music to PsychoNorth By NorthwestVertigoTaxi Driver and dozens of other films, and the theme songs to The Twilight Zone and Have Gun – Will Travel, died in his sleep on 12/24/1975, age 64
1935 ● Johnnie Richardson → One half of the R&B vocal duo Johnnie & Joe, “Over The Mountain, Across The Sea” (#8, R&B #3, 1957) and two other R&B Top 20 hits in 1957, played the oldies circuit and recorded a 1982 album, died following a stroke on 10/25/1988, age 53
1936 ● Leonard Lee → One half of 50s teen R&B/pop male-female contrasting duet-style Shirley & Lee, “Let The Good Times Roll” (#20, R&B #1, 1956), a solo career following a split from Shirley Goodman met with little success, became a social worker and died of a heart attack on 10/23/1976, age 40
1938 ● Billy Storm / (William Hamlin Jones) → Frontman for 50s-60s rock ‘n’ roll Billy Storm & The Valiants, “I’ve Come Of Age” (#28, 1959)
1940 ● Larry Brown / (Lawrence Russell Brown) → Lyricist and composer, wrote or co-wrote numerous pop hits, including “C’mon Marianne” (#9, 1967) for The Four Seasons, “I Woke Up In Love This Morning” (#13, 1971) for The Partridge Family, and “Knock Three Times” (#1, 1971) and “Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree” (#1, 1973) for Tony Orlando And Dawn
1942 ● Gilberto Gil / (Gilberto Moreira) → Brazilian “tropicalia” samba-salsa-pop-rock fusion singer and guitarist, Grammy-winning album Quanta Gente Veio Ver: Ao Vivo (1998), Minister of Culture for Brazil, 2003-2008
1943 ● Roger Ruskin Spear → Co-founder, kazoo, Jew’s harp, musical toy instrumentalist for Brit comedy-rock Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, “I’m The Urban Spaceman” (UK #5, 1968), died 1/18/1990
1945 ● Little Eva / (Eva Boyd) → Babysitter and maid for songwriters Carole King and Gerry Goffin, who wrote her hit “The Loco-Motion” (#1, 1962) about her dancing while doing housework, died of cervical cancer on 4/10/2003, age 57
1948 ● Bill Kirchen → The “Dieselbilly King,” versatile rockabilly, boogie, Western swing, rock ‘n’ roll and trucking music guitarist with Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen, “Hot Rod Lincoln” (#9, 1972), multiple solo albums including the Grammy-winning Word To The Wise (2010), frontman for several bands and tours/sessions with Nick LoweElvis CostelloEmmylou Harris and others
1948 ● Dervin Gordon → With twin brother Lincoln, Jamaican-born lead vocals for Brit reggae-pop The Equals, “Baby Come Back” (#32, 1968)
1948 ● Ian Paice → Drummer for hard rock/prog rock Deep Purple, “Smoke On The Water” (#4, 1973), the only constant member of the band since it formed in 1968, also played with hard rock Whitesnake, “Here I Go Again” (#1, 1987)
1948 ● Lincoln Gordon → With twin brother Dervin, Jamaican-born guitarist for Brit reggae-pop The Equals, “Baby Come Back” (#32, 1968)
1953 ● Colin Hay → Co-founder, vocals and guitar for Scottish-Australian Men At Work, “Down Under” (#1, UK #1, 1983), their Grammy-winning debut album, Business As Usual, was simultaneously the #1 US and UK album in January 1983, gaining them the distinction of being the only Aussie band to hold all four top spots at once
1954 ● Billy Hinsche → High school classmate and member of teenage bubblegum pop trio Dino, Desi & Billy with Dean Paul Martin and Desi Arnaz Jr., “I’m A Fool” (#17, 1965), later became a session and touring guitarist for The Beach Boys and the brother-in-law of Carl Wilson
1964 ● Steadman Pearson → Vocals for Brit family R&B/dance-pop quintet 5 Star, “Can’t Wait Another Minute” (#41, Dance/Club #7, 1986) and fifteen Top 40 singles in native England
1978 ● Nicole Scherzinger → Vocals for all-girl teen dance-pop quintet Eden’s Crush, “Get Over Yourself” (#1, 2001), the first #1 debut single by an all-female group, then lead singer for dance-pop Pussycat Dolls, “Don’t Cha” (#2, 2005), solo, “Baby Love” (Dance/Club #4, 2007), winner of Dancing With The Stars in 2010
1978 ● Sam Farrar → Bassist for power pop/indie rock Phantom Planet, “California” (Modern Rock #35, 2002), son of John Farrar of The Shadows (“Apache,” Worldwide #1, 1960)
1979 ● Richard Breen → Vocals for Brit dance-pop boy band 5ive (aka Five), “When The Lights Go Out” (#10, 1998)
1983 ● Aundrea Aurora Fimbres → Singer for MTV Making the Band program winner and pre-fab, all-girl dance-pop quintet Danity Kane, “Show Stopper” (#8, 2006)

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

July 01
1915 ● Willie Dixon → The “Poet Laureate of the Blues,” vital Chicago blues pioneer, singer, songwriter and guitarist, composed over 500 songs, including recognized standards such as “Spoonful,” “Back Door Man,” “Hoochie Coochie Man,” “Little Red Rooster” and many others, major influence on blues-rockers, including The Allman Brothers BandCreamThe DoorsGrateful DeadLed Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones, died of heart failure on 1/29/1992, age 76
1928 ● Bobby Day / (Robert James Byrd) → R&B/doo wop vocals and songwriter with The Hollywood Flames, “Buzz Buzz Buzz” (#11, R&B #5, 1957), then solo, “Rockin’ Robin” (#2, R&B #1, 1958), later one half of the duo Bob & Earl, “Harlem Shuffle” (#44, 1963), died of cancer on 1/27/1990, age 62
1933 ● Eddie Bond / (Eddie James Bond) → Rockabilly Hall of Fame singer and radio DJ who appeared on the TV music program Louisiana Hay Ride and toured with Johnny CashJerry Lee LewisRoy OrbisonCarl Perkins and others, famously rejected the then 18-year-old Elvis Presley, three years his younger, after the future superstar auditioned for his band, telling Elvis he should stick to driving a truck because he’d “never make it as a singer,” died from complications of Alzheimer’s disease on 3/20/2013, age 79.
1939 ● Delaney Bramlett → Accomplished guitarist and songwriter, member of house band The Shindogs for TV pop music variety show Shindig, one half of husband/wife front for rock/soul revue Delaney & Bonnie & Friends, “Never Ending Song Of Love” (#13, 1971), worked with Eric ClaptonDave Mason and George Harrison died from complications of gall bladder surgery on 12/27/2008, age 69
1942 ● Andraé Crouch → The “Father of Modern Gospel,” Grammy-winning, renowned and respected pioneer of contemporary gospel, singer, writer, producer, solo artist, “I’ll Be Thinking Of You” (R&B #69, 1980), collaborated with Elvis PresleyMichael JacksonQuincy JonesMadonna and others, film score composer and pastor, died following a heart attack on 1/8/2015, age 72
1945 ● Debbie Harry → Singer and frontwoman for New Wave pop-rock Blondie, “Heart Of Glass” (#1, 1979), solo, “In Love With Love” (#70, Dance/Club #1, 1987)
1946 ● June Monteiro → Singer for pop girl trio The Toys, “A Lover’s Concerto” (#2, 1965)
1948 ● John Ford → Bass and acoustic guitar for Brit folk-prog-rock The Strawbs, “Part Of The Union” (UK #2, 1973), formed rock duo Hudson Ford with bandmate/drummer Richard Hudson, “Pick Up The Pieces” (UK #8, 1973), then punk rock The Monks, “Nice Legs Shame About Her Face” (UK #19, 1979)
1949 ● John Farnham → Hugely popular solo pop-rock singer and songwriter in his native Australia, “You’re The Voice” (#82, UK #6, 1987)
1951 ● Fred Schneider → Vocals and frontman for New wave alt-dance-rock The B-52’s, “Love Shack” (#3, 1989)
1951 ● Victor Willis → Original member, lead singer, songwriter and policeman or naval officer character for campy, suggestive gay pop-rock vocal man band The Village People, “Y.M.C.A.” (#2, 1978), co-wrote most of the band’s hit songs and became embroiled in a copyright dispute after leaving in 1980, released a solo album in 2015 that had been recorded in 1979
1952 ● Dan Akroyd → TV and film actor, singer and portrayer “Elwood Blues” in the Saturday Night Live skit, movie and spin-off band The Blues Brothers, “Soul Man” (#14, 1979).
1952 ● Ndugu Chancler / (Leon Chancler) → Grammy-winning jazz-funk drummer, percussionist and sought-after sessionman, worked The CrusadersMiles DavisHerbie HancockMichael Jackson (drummed on “Billie Jean,” #1, 1983), Carlos SantanaFrank SinatraDonna SummerWeather Report and many others on hundreds of albums, died from prostate cancer on 2/3/2018, age 65
1956 ● Phil Solem → Singer, songwriter, co-founder of power pop Great Buildings, which became The Rembrandts, “I’ll Be There For You” (#17, 1995), the theme song to the TV situation comedy Friends
1959 ● Edem Ephraim → With Dennis Fuller, one half of Brit/Austrian dance-europop London Boys, “London Nights” (UK #2, 1989), died with Fuller in a car collision on 1/21/1996, age 36
1960 ● Champagne King / (Evelyn King) → R&B/disco and post-disco singer, “Love Come Down” (#17, Dance/Club #1, 1982)
1960 ● Ted Key → Bassist for Brit jangle-guitar pop-rock The Housemartins, “Caravan Of Love” (UK #1, 1986)
1963 ● Roddy Bottum → Keyboards for influential metal/funk/hip hop/punk fusion band Faith No More, “Epic” (#9, 1990)
1964 ● Pol Burton → Drummer for punk-pop-dance Transvision Vamp, “Baby I Don’t Care” (, 1983)
1971 ● Adam MacDougall → Keyboards for roots/raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991)
1971 ● Missy Elliott / (Melissa Elliott) → Hugely successful, four time Grammy-winning female rapper and songwriter, “Work It” (#2, 2002), producer, wrote “If Your Girl Only Knew” (#11, Dance/Club #6, 1996) for Aaliyah

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

July 03
1878 ● George M. Cohan / (George Michael Cohan) → Heralded composer, playwright and entertainer known as the “Father of American musical comedy” and for publishing more than 300 songs, including enduring favorites “Give My Regards To Broadway” (1904), “The Yankee Doodle Boy” (1904) and “You’re A Grand Old Flag” (1906), created and produced over 50 Broadway musicals in the 10s and 20s, acted in and produced movie musicals in the 30s, died from cancer on 11/5/1942, age 64
1893 ● “Mississippi” John Hurt / (John Smith Hurt) → Dexterous country-blues guitarist and songwriter who might have passed in obscurity but for the 60s blues-folk revival, his 1964 recordings for the Library of Congress touched off a brief period in the spotlight that continued after his death from a heart attack on 11/2/1966, age 73
1929 ● David Lynch → Vocals for hugely successful R&B/doo wop The Platters, “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” (#1, 1958) and 13 other Top 20 hits between 1955 and 1967, died of cancer on 1/2/1981, age 51
1930 ● Tommy Tedesco → Top session guitarist, billed by Guitar Player magazine as the most recorded guitarist in history, worked on TV and film scores and recorded with The AssociationThe Beach BoysCherSam CookeThe Everly BrothersElla FitzgeraldThe MonkeesElvis PresleyNancy and Frank SinatraBarbra StreisandThe SupremesFrank Zappa and numerous others, died from lung cancer on 11/10/1997, age 67
1934 ● Hot Dog Rog / (Roger Christian) → Songwriter and popular Los Angeles radio DJ in the 60s and 70s, co-wrote several surf-rock and hot rod songs and ballads, including “Little Deuce Coup” (#15, 1963) and “Don’t Worry Baby” (#24, 1964) with Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys and “The Little Old Lady From Pasadena” (#3, 1964) and “Dead Man’s Curve” ((#8, 1964) with Jan Berry of Jan & Dean, died from kidney and liver failure on 7/11/1991, age 57
1936 ● Frederick Tupper Saussy III → American composer, musician, advertising executive, watercolor painter, author, high school English teacher, jazz recording artist and Nashville Symphony contributor best known as the songwriter and keyboardist for psych-pop The Neon Philharmonic, “Morning Girl” (#17, 1969), later convicted of tax evasion and spent nearly 10 years as a fugitive before surfacing and turning himself in, became chapel music director and piano instructor for prisoners while serving his sentence in a California correctional facility, upon release wrote several books and resumed recording, died from a heart attack on 3/16/2007, two days before the release of his first CD and first new music album in 37 years, The Chocolate Orchid Piano Bar (2007), age 70
1940 ● Maureen Kennedy → Vocals for 60s all-girl Brit-pop ensemble The Vernon Girls, “Lover Please” (UK #16, 1962)
1940 ● Fontella Bass → Gospel-rooted R&B/soul diva and pianist, “Rescue Me” (#4, R&B #1, 1965), left the music business in the mid-70s to raise her children, successfully sued for back royalties in the 90s, died following a heart attack on 12/26/2012, age 72
1943 ● Garland Jeffreys → African-American/Puerto Rican American rock, reggae and blues singer and songwriter, “Wild In The Street” (1973) and several solo albums
1943 ● Judith Durham → Vocals for Aussie folk-sunshine pop The Seekers, “Georgy Girl” (#2, 1967), solo
1946 ● Victor Unitt → Guitarist with Brit blues then prog-rock Edgar Broughton Band, “Apache Dropout” (UK #33, 1970), joined blues-rock The Pretty Things and appeared on the album Parachute (1970)
1947 ● Betty Buckley → Film (Carrie, 1976), TV (Eight Is Enough, 1977) and Broadway (Cats, 1983) actress, traditional pop and show tunes singer with 14 solo albums, plus cast recording of multiple Broadway shows
1948 ● Paul Barrere → Multi-genre guitarist and songwriter, most prominently with Southern-fried blues/boogie rock Little Feat for three decades, wrote or co-wrote some of the band’s best-known songs, including “All That You Dream” (1975), “Time Loves A Hero” (1977), “Down On The Farm” (1979) and “Hate To Lose Your Lovin’” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1989), during breaks from the band issued three solo albums and performed with Taj MahalCarly SimonPhil Lesh And FriendsBob DylanRobert Palmer and others, and as a duo with bandmate Fred Tackett, died from liver disease on 10/26/2019, age 71.
1949 ● John Verity → Guitarist for hard/art rock Argent, “Hold Your Head Up” (#5, 1972), formed Phoenix and later Charlie, “It’s Inevitable” (Mainstream Rock #13, 1983), solo, producer
1949 ● Johnnie Wilder, Jr. → Co-founder and Lead vocals in multinational, sophisticated disco-funk Heatwave, “Boogie Nights” (#2, 1977), died in his sleep on 5/13/2006, age 56
1950 ● Damon Harris → Joined Motown R&B/soul legends The Temptations as tenor vocalist in 1971, Grammy-winning “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” (#1, 1972), left in 1975 and formed disco Impact, “Give A Broken Heart A Break” (Disco #5, 1976), solo
1952 ● Laura Branigan / (Laura Ann Branigan) → Grammy-winning 80s pop-rock singer, songwriter and actress with a pair of hits, “Gloria” (#2, 1982) and “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You” (#12, AC #1, 1983) plus writing credits for soundtracks to Flashdance (1983) and Ghostbusters (1984) and TV and stage acting, died of a brain aneurysm on 8/26/2004, age 52
1952 ● Andy Fraser → Bassist and songwriter, briefly with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers before co-founding power rock Free (“All Right Now,” #4, 1970) at age 16, wrote “Obama (Yes We Can)” for Barack Obama’s 2009 presidential campaign, his songs have been covered by Joe CockerRobert PalmerRod Stewart and others, died from cancer and AIDS on 3/16/2015, age 62
1955 ● Mike Corby → Keyboards and guitars for mainstream pop-rock The Babys, “Isn’t It Time” (#13, 1977), left in 1978
1955 ● Neil Clark → Guitar for Brit pop-rock Lloyd Cole & The Commotions, “Lost Weekend” (UK #17, 1985)
1956 ● Stephen Pearcy → Lead vocalist for hard rock/glam and hair metal Ratt, “Round And Round” (#12, 1984)
1960 ● Vince Clarke / (Vincent John Martin) → Keyboards, synthesizer and founding member of electro-dance/synth-pop Depeche Mode, “Just Can’t Get Enough” (Dance/Club #26, 1982), left to form synth-pop duo Yaz (Yazoo in the UK), “Nobody’s Diary” (Dance/Club #1, 1983), then co-founded synth-pop duo The Assembly, “Never Never” (UK #4, 1983), then synth-dance duo Erasure, “Chains Of Love” (#12, Dance/Club #4, 1988) plus over 20 other Dance/Club hits
1968 ● Martyn Walsh → Bassist for Brit psych-alt rock Inspiral Carpets, “Two Worlds Collide” (Modern Rock #8, 1992)
1969 ● Butterfly / (Ishmael Butler) → Vocals and producer for hip hop rap-jazz fusion trio Digable Planets, “Reachin’ (A New Refutation Of Time And Space)” (#15, R&B #5, 1993)
1969 ● Kevin Hearn → Keyboards, accordion and guitar for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, “One Week” (#1, 1998)
1975 ● Javier Weyler → Drummer for Welsh alt rock/trad rock Stereophonics, “Have A Nice Day” (Modern Rock #26, UK #5, 2001), replacing Richard Cable who departed in 2003
1976 ● Shane Lynch → Vocals for Irish teen-pop boy band Boyzone, “No Matter What” (Adult Contemporary #12, 1999)

July 04
1826 ● Stephen Foster / (Stephen Collins Foster) → The “Father of American Music” and likely the country’s first widely-renowned music star and a now-enduring 19th century pop music composer whose works are at the core of the American Songbook, his hundreds of titles include lasting standards such as “Oh, Susanna” (1849), “Camptown Races” (1850) and “Beautiful Dreamer” (1864), died at a very young age following an accidental fall on 1/13/1864, age 37.
1889 ● Joe Young → Tin Pan Alley and popular music lyricist, co-wrote “I’m Sitting On Top Of The World” (1925) and the oft-covered pop standard “I’m Going to Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter,” a #5 hit for Fats Waller in 1935 and a #3 hit for Billy Williams in 1957 in 1957, among several others, died from undisclosed causes on 4/21/1939, age 49.
1911 ● Mitch Miller / (William Mitchell Miller) → Classical musician, then pop bandleader, arranger and singer, “The Yellow Rose Of Texas” (#1, 1955), later head of A&R (artists and repertory) for Columbia Records pop division and host of his own TV program that featured the “Sing Along With Mitch” concept based on the success of 20 such albums he released in the early 60s, died after a short illness on 7/31/2010, age 99
1934 ● Gilbert Lopez → Vocals in R&B/doo wop The Tune Weavers, “Happy, Happy Birthday Baby” (#5, 1957)
1938 ● Bill Withers / (William Harrison Withers Jr.) → Son of a West Virginia coal miner, self-taught guitarist and three-time Grammy-winning R&B/soul singer/songwriter for “Ain’t No Sunshine” (#3, R&B #6, 1971), “Lean On Me” (#1, R&B #1, 1972) and “Just The Two Of Us” (#2, R&B #3, 1981), stopped recording and performing in 1985 out of frustration with the music business and, except for occasional appearances at induction ceremonies, stayed out of the spotlight until dying from heart disease on 3/30/2020, age 81.
1940 ● Dave Rowberry → Keyboards for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964), died from a bleeding ulcer on 6/6/2003, age 62
1941 ● Dick Addrisi → With his older brother, Don, one-half the pop vocal duo The Addrisi Brothers, scored several minor hits in the 60s and 70s but found greater success as a songwriting team, including “Never My Love” for The Association (#2, 1967) which they recorded for themselves and reached #80 (AC #28) in 1977, continued to write and perform together until his brother’s death in 1984
1943 ● Annette Beard Sterling Helton → Original member and vocalist for Motown R&B/pop girl group Martha & The Vandellas, “(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave” (#4, 1963), left the group in 1964 for her family
1943 ● Fred Wesley → Jazz and funk trombonist, music director and bandleader for James Brown‘s backing band, The J.B.’s, “Doing It To Death” (#22, R&B #1, 1973), also recorded and toured with funk Parliament and FunkadelicCount BasieMaceo ParkerDe La Soul and others, currently a visiting artist/adjunct professor at Berklee College of Music and other schools
1943 ● Blind Owl Wilson / (Alan Wilson) → Guitar, harmonica and vocals for blues-rock/boogie-rock Canned Heat, “Going Up The Country” (#11, 1968), died of a drug overdose on 9/3/1970, age 27
1947 ● Jacques Morali → French producer and songwriter, produced over 65 albums, formed and managed gay disco troupe Village People, “YMCA” (#2, 1979), died of AIDS on 11/15/1991, age 44
1948 ● Jeremy Spencer → Early member and slide guitarist for blues-rock Fleetwood Mac, “Albatross” (UK #1, 1969), left the band abruptly during a 1971 tour to join the Children of God religious sect
1949 ● Gene Gunnels → Early drummer in 60s psych-pop-rock Strawberry Alarm Clock, “Incense And Peppermints” (#1, 1967), but left before the song became a hit
1950 ● Kid Jensen / (David ‘Jensen) → Canadian-born, Danish descent radio DJ and TV personality, first for Radio Luxembourg in the late 60s and the BBC Radio 1 beginning in 1976, later Capital FM and other London stations
1951 ● Ralph Johnson → Drummer for R&B/soul-dance-pop Earth, Wind & Fire, “Shining Star” (#1, 1975)
1952 ● John Waite → Singer, songwriter and bassist for mainstream pop-rock The Babys, “Everytime I Think Of You” (#13, 1979), then arena rock Bad English, “When I See You Smile” (#1, 1989), then pop-rock balladeer solo, “Missing You” (#1, 1984)
1958 ● Kirk Pengilly → Guitar and vocals for Aussie New Wave dance-groove-pop INXS, “Need You Tonight” (#1, 1987)
1963 ● Matt Malley → Bassist for alt-rock Counting Crows, “Mr. Jones” (Modern Rock #2, 1994)
1964 ● Mark Slaughter → Vocals, guitar, keyboards, songwriter and frontman for pop-glam metal Slaughter, “Fly To The Angels” (#19, 1990), currently a voice-over actor and TV music composer
1970 ● Andy McClure → Drummer for Britpop Sleeper, “Sale Of The Century” (UK #10, 1996)
1971 ● Andrew Creeggan → Piano for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, “One Week” (#1, 1998)
1972 ● William Goldsmith → Drummer for post-grunge alt rock Foo Fighters, “Learn To Fly” (Modern Rock #1, 1999) quit the band in 1997
1978 ● Stephen McNally → Vocals and guitar for short-lived teen pop-rock trio BBMak, “Back Here” (#13, 2000)

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This Week’s Birthdays (June 7 – 13)

Happy Birthday this week to:

June 07

1917 ● Dean Martin / (Dino Paul Crocetti) → Film, TV and stage actor, singer, “Memories Are Made Of This” (#1, 1956) and 15 other Top 40 singles, cultural icon and member of the Rat Pack, died of lung cancer on 12/25/1995, age 78

1925 ● Alan Pearlman / (Alan Robert Pearlman) → NASA sound engineer, inventor and founder of ARP Instruments, Inc. in 1969, the company became the leading producer of music synthesizers for the rock, pop, jazz, electronic and avant-garde genres, his full-sized ARP2600 and the smaller ARP Odyssey were preferred instruments in the progressive rock movement of the 70s and the synth-pop wave of the 80s, an earlier model was featured in the classic film Close Encounters Of The Third Kind (1977) and as the voice of R2D2 in the Star Wars film series, later founded a computer graphics company and consulted on various sound engineering projects, died from natural causes on 1/5/2019, age 93.

1938 ● Michael Goldstein → Rock music publicist and artist PR agent who represented and promoted multiple top acts in the late 60s and early 70s, including Jimi Hendrix, Sly & The Family Stone, Jefferson Airplane and Grateful Dead (and claimed to have 10 different acts as clients at the 1969 Woodstock festival), left PR to found The Soho Weekly News in New York City in 1973 as a competitor to The Village Voice, folded the paper in 1982 and tried numerous entrepreneurial ventures over the years until his death from pancreatic cancer on 5/19/2018, age 79

1940 ● Tom Jones / (Tom Woodward) → Grammy-winning, Welsh heartthrob vocalist “She’s A Lady” (#2, 1971) plus 15 other Top 40 singles and, in the 80s, nine Country Top 40 hits

1942 ● Gary Burger → With four other American G.I.’s stationed in Germany, lead guitar for 60s avant-garde garage rock/proto-punk The Monks (1966 LP Black Monk Time), the band broke up in 1968 but reformed in 1999 when their album became a cult classic, died of pancreatic cancer on 3/17/2014, age 71

1944 ● Clarence White / (Clarence LeBlanc) → Acadian guitarist for progressive bluegrass sibling group Kentucky Colonels, then seminal country-pop-rock The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man” (#1, 1965), session work for Jackson Browne, Randy Newman and others, killed by a drunken driver on 7/15/1973, age 29

1948 ● Dave Torbert → Bass guitarist, vocalist and songwriter for Bay Area country-rock New Riders Of The Purple Sage, co-wrote “Contract” and many other NRPS songs, co-founded country-rock Kingfish with Matthew Kelly and Bob Weirr (Grateful Dead), died of a heart attack on 12/7/1982, age 34

1953 ● Johnny Clegg / (Jonathan Paul Clegg) → British-born, South African guitarist and songwriter known as the “White Zulu” for his writings against the white minority rule of apartheid, co-founder and frontman for multiracial Afro-Euro-dance pop band Juluka and Zulu-dance-pop Savuka, his song “Scatterlings Of Africa” was his only entry on the UK Singles Chart (UK #44, 1983 with Juluka and UK #75, 1987 as Johnny Clegg & Savuka) and was featured on the soundtrack to the Oscar-winning film Rain Man (1988), continued to perform with his bands and release solo albums through 2018, died from pancreatic cancer on 7/16/2019, age 66.

1955 ● Joey Scarbury → One hit wonder Canadian pop singer, “Theme From The Greatest American Hero (Believe It Or Not)” (#2, 1981)

1957 ● Paddy McAloon / (Patrick Joseph McAloon) → Guitar and vocals for Brit indie pop Prefab Sprout, “If You Don’t Love Me” (Dance/Club #3, 1992)

1958 ● Prince / (Prince Rogers Nelson) → Mega-talented, multi-instrumentalist songwriter, singer, actor, producer and pop-rock/soul-funk bandleader, “When Doves Cry” (#1, 1984) and 30 other Top 40 singles, seven Grammy Awards, an Academy Ward-winning movie, Purple Rain (1984) and multiple hits for others, including “Manic Monday” by The Bangles (#2, 1986), collapsed at home and died from a prescription painkiller overdose on 4/21/2016, age 57

1964 ● Ecstasy / (John Fletcher) → Vocals for rap/R&B “new jack swing” Whodini, “Five Minutes Of Funk” (1984) from the acclaimed album Escape

1966 ● Eric Kretz → Drummer for alt hard rock Stone Temple Pilots, “Interstate Love Song” (#18, 1994)

1967 ● Dave Navarro / (David Michael Navarro) → Founding member and lead guitarist for alt rock/post-punk Jane’s Addiction, “Been Caught Stealing” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1990), in mid-90s joined funk-rock Red Hot Chili Peppers, released two solo albums with one Top 10 hit, “Rexall” (Mainstream Rock #9, 2001), in 2012 began as celebrity judge on the tattoo competition reality TV show Ink Master

1974 ● T-Low / (Terry Brown) → Vocals in contemporary R&B/smooth soul brother duo Next, “Too Close” (#1, 1998)

1985 ● Chaz Simo / (Charles Robert Simpson) → Guitar and vocals for Brit pop-punk boyband Busted, “You Said No” (UK #1, 2003)

1990 ● Iggy Azalea / (Amethyst Amelia Kelly) → Australian rapper, songwriter and fashion model, “Fancy” (#1, 2014) and three other US Top 40 hits

June 08

1918 ● Robert Preston / (Robert Meservy) → Tony-winning Broadway stage and screen (mostly Westerns) actor who landed the role of a lifetime as the lead in The Music Man on stage in 1957 and film in 1962, died of lung cancer on 3/21/87, age 68

1936 ● James Darren / (James William Ercolani) → Early pop-rock teen idol singer, “Goodbye Cruel World” (#3, 1961), film actor (Gidget, 1959, Venus In Furs, 1969 and others), TV actor in The Time Tunnel (1966-67) and T. J. Hooker (1982-85)

1940 ● Nancy Sinatra → Sultry, sexy MOR pop singer, “These Boots Were Made for Walking” (#1, 1966), duet with father Frank “Somethin’ Stupid” (#1, 1967), the only father/daughter #1 hit ever

1940 ● Sherman Garnes → Bass vocals for R&B/doo wop Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers, “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” (1956), died during open heart surgery on 2/26/1977, age 36

1941 ● Fuzzy Haskins / (Clarence Haskins) → Guitar and vocals for R&B/soul-funk (“P-Funk”) Parliament-Funkadelic, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#31, 1978)

1942 ● Chuck Negron → Co-founder and one of three lead vocalists for top-tier pop-rock k Three Dog Night, “Joy To The World” (#1, 1971) and ten other Top 10 hits between 1969 and 1974

1944 ● Boz Scaggs / (William Royce Scaggs) → Guitarist, songwriter and vocalist, first with early Steve Miller Band, then a long solo career starting with “Lowdown” (#3, 1976) and “Lido Shuffle” (#11, 1977)

1944 ● Don Grady / (Don Louis Agrati) → TV actor, musician, singer and songwriter starting as a Mouseketeer on The Mickey Mouse Show and then as Robbie Douglas, the teenage heart-throb and oldest of three brothers on the 60s wholesome sitcom My Three Sons (1960-1972), joined short-lived, one hit wonder sunshine pop band The Yellow Balloon (“Yellow Balloon,” #25, 1967) and later wrote TV themes and soundtracks, died of bone cancer on 06/27/2012, age 68

1947 ● Annie Haslam / (Anne Haslam) → Vocalist and songwriter best known for her 45 year tenure as lead singer for Brit folk/prog rock Renaissance (“Northern Lights,” UK #10, 1978), plus 18 solo albums and an annual Christmas concert in Sellersville near Philadelphia, PA

1947 ● Julie Driscoll → Brit pop diva with Brian Auger & The Trinity, “This Wheel’s On Fire” (UK #5, 1968), solo prog rock albums, now jazz-improv vocals

1949 ● Jimmie King → Guitarist and founding member of soul/funk The Bar-Kays, “Soul Finger” (#17, R&B #3, 1967), which also served as Stax Records‘ in-house session group and Otis Reddingg’s backing band, died in the Wisconsin plane crash that killed Redding and four Bar-Kays bandmates on 12/10/1967, age 18

1951 ● Bonnie Tyler / (Gaynor Hopkins) → Welsh-born raspy-voiced pop-rock solo singer, “Total Eclipse of the Heart” (#1, 1983), plus session backing vocals for Cher and others

1953 ● Jeff Rich → Drummer for blues-rock Climax Blues Band and psych-boogie rock Status Quo, “Pictures Of Matchstick Men” (#12, 1968)

1954 ● Greg Ginn → Founder, frontman, lead singer and principal songwriter for 80s nihilistic L.A. hardcore punk-rock Black Flag (“Thirty And Miserable,” 1981), ranked #99 on Rolling Stone magazine’s Top 100 guitarists of all time

1956 ● Steve Walwyn / (Stephen Martin Walwyn) → Lead guitarist since 1989 for Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, “Milk And Alcohol” (UK #9, 1979)

1960 ● Mick Hucknall / (Michael James Hucknall) → Frontman, singer and songwriter for Brit soul-pop Simply Red, “Holding Back The Years” (#1, 1986), solo

1962 ● Nick Rhodes / (Nick Bates) → Keyboards for New Wave pop-rock Duran Duran, “Hungry Like The Wolf” (#3, 1982)

1965 ● Rob Pilatus → Singer and one half of the scandalous, lip-synching dance-pop vocal duo Milli Vanilli, the pair were stripped of their 1989 Grammy Award when in 1990 it was revealed that they never actually sang on their albums or in concert, committed suicide on 4/2/1998, age 32

1966 ● Doris Pearson → Vocals for Brit family R&B/dance-pop quintet 5 Star, “Can’t Wait Another Minute” (#41, Dance/Club #7, 1986) and fifteen Top 40 singles in native England

1967 ● Neil Mitchell → Keyboards for Scottish pop-rock Wet Wet Wet, “Love Is All Around” (#41, UK #1, 1994)

1970 ● Nicci Gilbert / (Nichole Gilbert) → Vocals in urban contemporary R&B girl trio Brownstone, “If You Love Me” (#8, 1994), solo

1971 ● Jef Streatfield → Guitarist for Brit hard/raunch rock The Wildhearts, “Sick Of Drugs” (UK #14, 1995)

1973 ● Gabe Ford / (Gabriel Ford) → Current drummer for Southern-fried blues-boogie rock Little Feat, “Dixie Chicken” (1973) and “Hate To Lose Your Lovin'” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1988) replacing founding drummer Richie Hayward, who left in 2009 with liver cancer

1977 ● Kanye West → Hip hop producer for Jay-Z and others, then solo rap star, “Gold Digger” (#1, 2005), five-time Grammy winner in 2007

1979 ● Derek Trucks → Blues-rock and world music guitarist and songwriter, nephew of Allman Brothers drummer Butch Trucks, frontman for Grammy-winning The Derek Trucks Band, member of The Allman Brothers Band since 1999, formed the Tedeschi Trucks Band in 2010 with wife Susan Tedeschi

1981 ● Alex Band → Founder, vocals and leader of post-grunge alt rock The Calling, “Wherever You Will Go” (#5, 2001), solo

1985 ● Jamie Shaw → Vocals in teen pop boy band One True Voice, “Sacred Trust / After You’re Gone” (UK #2, 2002)

1989 ● Richard Fleeshman → English TV actor (Craig Harris on the long-running Coronation Street) and singer-songwriter, “Coming Down” (UK #78, 2007)

June 09

1891 ● Cole Porter → Grammy-winning singer and composer, one of America’s greatest songwriters, wrote countless classic songs, including “Night And Day” (1932), “I Get A Kick Out Of You” (1934) and “Begin The Beguine” (1935), died of kidney failure on 10/15/1964, age 73

1915 ● Les Paul / (Lester William Polsfuss) → Immensely influential jazz and country-pop guitarist, singer and songwriter, recorded solo and with wife Mary Ford, “Hummingbird” (#7, 1955), inventor of the Gibson Les Paul solid-body electric guitar and developer of various playing and recording techniques, including “close miking,” overdubbing, echo delay and multitrack recording, died from severe pneumonia on 8/12/2009, age 94

1921 ● Dick Rowe / (Richard Paul Rowe) → Brit music producer and talent scout for Decca Records in the 50s and 60s, signed The Rolling Stones, The Moody Bluess, The Zombies, Tom Jones and many other top artists but famously declined to sign The Beatles following an audition in January 1962, produced multiple hits in the 60s before bowing out at the peak of his career, died from diabetes on 6/6/1986, age 65

1926 ● CeDell Davis / (Ellis CeDell Davis) → Delta blues guitarist who overcame childhood polio and constricted hands to play slide guitar with a butter knife, spent decades on the juke joint circuit in the South before being “discovered” by music writer Robert Palmer in the 80s, toured nationally and recorded several albums with his unique style and gritty singing, including a final album, Even The Devil Gets The Blues (2016) featuring Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, suffered a heart attack and died three days later on 9/27/2017, age 91

1929 ● Johnny Ace / (John Marshall Alexander, Jr.) → Young, gifted and promising R&B/blues balladeer with a posthumous hit (“Pledging My Love,” #17, R&B #1, 1955) and epitaph (Billboard magazine’s “most played artist of 1955”) after he shot himself to death playing Russian roulette backstage after a show in Houston on Christmas night, 12/25/1954, age 25

1934 ● Jackie Wilson / (Jack Leroy Wilson) → Prolific and important R&B-to-soul singer with 13 R&B Top 10 singles from 1957-75, including “Lonely Teardrops” (#7, 1959), suffered a massive heart attack on 9/29/1975 during a Dick Clark nightclub show, fell from the stage and lived 8 years in a coma until he died on 1/21/1984, age 49

1941 ● Billy Hatton → Drummer and singer for Merseybeat pop-rock The Fourmost, “A Little Loving” (UK #6, 1964)

1941 ● Jon Lord → Classically-trained keyboardist and session player, co-founded hard rock/prog rock Deep Purple, “Smoke On The Water” (#4, 1973), solo and Whitesnake, “Here I Go Again” (#1, 1987), age 71

1946 ● Stuart Edwards → Lead guitar for studio-only pop-rock Edison Lighthouse, “(Love Grows) Where My Rosemary Goes” (#5, 1970)

1947 ● Mick Box → Guitarist for hard rock Uriah Heep, “Easy Livin'” (#39, 1972), the only original member still active with the band

1949 ● Billy C. Farlow → Rockabilly, Western swing and country rock guitarist, singer, harmonica player and songwriter, formed Billy C. & The Sunshine in the 60s, joined country-rock/boogie/swing bar band Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen, “Hot Rod Lincoln” (#9, 1972), left in 1976 to front his own bands and collaborate with others through to the 00s, including The Butterfield Blues Band drummer Sam Lay, continues to tour and record regularly

1949 ● Francis Monkman → Multi-instrumental rock and classical composer, film score writer and co-founder of Brit prog/avant-garde rock Curved Air, “Back Street Luv” (UK #4, 1974)

1949 ● George Bunnell → Bassist for 60s psych-pop-rock Strawberry Alarm Clock, “Incense And Peppermints” (#1, 1967)

1950 ● Trevor Bolder → Bassist for David Bowie‘s early 70s glam-rock backing band, which became hard rock The Spiders From Mars, replaced John Wetton in Uriah Heep (1976-81), then replaced Wetton in Wishbone Ash, returned to Uriah Heep in 1983

1951 ● Peter Gill → Drummer for Brit heavy metal Son Of A Bitch which became Saxon, “Power And The Glory” (#32, 1983) and punk-metal Motörhead, “Ace Of Spades” (UK #15, 1980)

1951 ● Terry Uttley → Bass and vocals for pop-rock Smokie, “Living Next Door To Alice” (#25, UK #3, 1977)

1953 ● Errol Kennedy → Vocals for R&B/electro-dance-soul Imagination, “Just An Illusion” (Dance/Club #15, 1982)

1954 ● Peter Byrne → Songwriter and co-founder of New Wave synth-pop Naked Eyes, “(There’s) Always Something There To Remind Me” (#10, 1983), then formed Britpop duo Climie Fisher, “Love Changes (Everything)” (#23, 1988)

1962 ● Eddie Lundon → Guitar and vocals for New Romantic/dance-pop China Crisis, “Wishful Thinking” (UK #9, 1984) and “Working With Fire And Steel” (Dance/Club #27, 1984
1967 ● Dean Dinning → Bassist for alt pop-rock Toad The Wet Sprocket, “All I Want” (#15, 1992), nephew of 50s pop-rocker Mark Dinning, “Teen Angel” (#1, 1960)

1967 ● Dean Felber → Bass and vocals for 90s pop-rock quartet Hootie & The Blowfish, “Only Wanna Be With You” (#6, 1995), solo

1970 ● Ed Simons → DJ and keyboards for dance-rock-rap fusion duo The Chemical Brothers, “It Began In Afrika” (Dance/Club #1, 2001)

1972 ● Wesley Reid Scantlin → Co-founder, singer, songwriter and guitarist for post-grunge Puddle Of Mudd, “Blurry” (#5, 2001)

1978 ● Matthew Bellamy → Guitar, vocals and keyboards for prog-glam-electronic rock Muse, “Uprising” (#37, 2009)

1980 ● James Walsh → Singer, guitarist, pianist and frontman for post-Britpop Starsailor, “Silence Is Easy” (UK #9, 2003)

1983 ● Frankee / (Nicole Francine Aiello) → Hip hop/R&B urban contemporary singer, “F.U.R.B. (Fuck You Right Back)” (#63, Top 40 #29, 2004), a response to ex-boyfriend Eamon‘s single “Fuck It (I Don’t Want You Back)” (#16, 2004)

June 10

1910 ● Howlin’ Wolf / (Chester Arthur Burnett) → Highly influential blues guitarist, harpist and songwriter, “Smokestack Lightning” (R&B #8, 1956), died from cancer on 1/10/1976, age 65

1922 ● Judy Garland / (Frances Ethel Gumm) → Grammy-winning singer and film actress, “(Somewhere) Over The Rainbow” (1939), played Dorothy in the Wizard Of Oz (1939), released the comeback album Judy At Carnegie Hall (Billboard #1, 1961), died 7/22/1969 from a barbiturate overdose, age 47

1931 ● João Gilberto / (João Gilberto Prado Pereira de Oliveira) → The “Father of Bossa Nova,” Brazilian bandleader, songwriter, guitarist and pioneer of the “new thing” music blending Brazilian samba with American jazz and pop in the late 50s, his 78 rpm album Chega de Saudade (1959) is considered the first bossa nova record and its follow-on siblings in 1960-1961 launched the early 60s bossa nova dance craze in North America, in all his oeuvre is over 30 albums, including the widely-acclaimed, two-time Grammy-winning Getz/Gilberto (1964) with jazz saxophonist Stan Getz and featuring then-wife Astrud Gilberto on vocals and the hit “The Girl From Ipanema” (#5, AC #1, 1964), continued to record and perform for decades until declining mental and physical health forced his retirement, died from undisclosed causes on 7/6/2019, age 88.

1941 ● Shirley Alston Reeves / (Shirley Owens) → Vocals for first rock-era girl group The Shirelles, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (#1, 1960), solo

1941 ● Mickey Jones → Session and tour drummer for Kenny Rogers, Johnny Rivers, Trini Lopez and Bob Dylan‘s first electric band on the 1966 world tour, left music in the mid-70s and became a successful film and TV character actor, best known for his roles on ABC’s Home Improvement (1991-99) and FX’s Justified (2011-14), died following a long, unspecified illness on 2/7/2018, age 76

1942 ● Janet Vogel → Vocals in R&B/doo wop quintet The Skyliners, “Since I Don’t Have You” (#12, 1959), committed suicide on 2/21/1980, age 37

1961 ● Kelley Deal → Lead guitar and backing vocals for alt rock The Breeders, “Cannonball” (#44, Modern Rock #2, 1993), solo, identical twin of bandmate Kim Deal

1961 ● Kimberly Anne Deal → Bass guitar and backing vocals for influential alt rock Pixies, “Velouria” (Modern Rock #4, 1990), then co-founder, rhythm guitar and vocals for alt rock The Breeders, “Cannonball” (#44, Modern Rock #2, 1993), identical twin of bandmate Kelley Deal

1961 ● Mark Shaw / (Mark Robert Tiplady) → Vocals for New Wave synth-pop-soul Then Jerico, “The Motive” (UK #18, 1987)

1961 ● Maxi Priest / (Max Alfred Elliott) → The “King of Lovers Rock”, Jamaican-born Brit contemporary R&B and reggae star, “Close To You” (#1, 1990)

1964 ● Emma Anderson → Guitarist for alt pop/shoegazing band Lush, “Sweetness & Light” (Modern Rock #4, 1990)

1964 ● Jimmy Chamberlain → Drummer for alt/prog rock/metal band Smashing Pumpkins, “1979” (#12, 1996)

1965 ● Joey Santiago → Filipino-American lead guitarist and songwriter for influential alt rock Pixies, “Velouria” (Modern Rock #4, 1990), following the band’s breakup formed alt rock The Martinis with his wife, Linda Mallari and composed film scores until the Pixies reformed in 2004

1967 ● Human Beat Box / (Darren Robinson) → Oversized vocalist in hip hop/beatbox pioneers The Fat Boys “Wipe Out” (#12, 1987), died of an obesity-induced heart attack on 12/10/1995, age 28

1968 ● The D.O.C. / (Tracy Lynn Curry) → Gangsta rapper with hip hop group Fila Fresh Crew, co-wrote songs for gangsta rap group N.W.A., then solo, “It’s Funky Enough” (Rap #1, 1988) from the #20 album No One Can Do It Better

1969 ● Dan Lavery → Bass and background vocals for Grammy-nominated alt/roots rock Tonic, “If You Could Only See” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1997)

1971 ● JoJo Hailey / (Joel “JoJo” Hailey) → With brother Cedric, vocals in R&B/electro-dance “bad boy” quartet Jodeci, “Lately” (#4, 1993), left with Cedric to form romantic soul duo K-Ci & JoJo, “All My Life” (#1, 1998)

1973 ● Faith Renée Evans → R&B/contemporary soul-pop singer with 11 singles in the R&B Top 10, including “Love Like This” (#7, 1998), widow of rapper Christopher “The Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace, her tribute to him, “I’ll Be Missing You” (#1, 1997) with Puff Daddy and 112 won a 1997 Grammy Award

1973 ● LeMisha Grinsted → Vocals with sister Irish 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

1987 ● Tinchy Stryder / (Kwasi Danquah) → Garage/grime rap singer, “Number 1” (UK #3, 2009)

June 11

1934 ● “Pookie” Hudson / (James Hudson) → Frontman and lead vocals for pioneer R&B/doo wop The Spaniels, “Goodnight, Sweetheart, Goodnight” (R&B #5, 1954), died of cancer on 1/16/2007, age 72

1936 ● Jud Strunk / (Justin Strunk, Jr.) → One hit wonder country-pop singer, comedian and humorous songwriter with the novelty hit “Daisy A Day” (#14, AC #4, 1973), semi-regular on TV comedy show Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In in the 70s, died when he suffered a heart attack while piloting a small plane which crashed on takeoff on 10/15/1981, age 45

1940 ● Joey Dee / (Joseph DiNicola) → Frontman and lead vocals for early rock ‘n’ roll Joey Dee & The Starlighters, the house band at New York’s Peppermint Lounge, “The Peppermint Twist” (#1, 1962) and “Shout” (#6, 1962)

1947 ● Glenn Leonard → Vocals for R&B giants The Temptations, “My Girl” (#1, 1965) and Grammy-winning “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” (#1, 1972), solo

1947 ● Richard Palmer-James → Lyricist for prog/space-rock King Crimson, “The Court Of The Crimson King” (#80, 1970), lyricist and guitar for prog-art-pop-rock Supertramp, “The Logical Song” (#6, 1979)

1948 ● Skip Alan / (Alan Ernest Skipper) → Drummer for raunchy R&B/blues-rock British Invasion band The Pretty Things, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (UK #10, 1964)

1949 ● Frank Beard → Drummer for venerable Texas blues/boogie rock trio ZZ Top, “Legs” (#8, 1984)

1950 ● Pedro Bell → Graphic artist and musician known for his several dozen album cover illustrations for George Clinton‘s Funkadelic and its offshoot band, Parliament, the core bands in the musicians’ collective known as “P-Funk” that pioneered the unique blend of heavy funk and psychedelic rock also called P-Funk, wrote the liner notes to several P-Funk albums under the pseudonym “Sir Lleb” (Bell spelled backwards), participated in several production studio, comic book, e-magazine and start-up band projects before going legally blind in 1996, died following years of declining health on 8/27/2019, age 69.

1951 ● Lynsey De Paul / (Lyndsey Monkton Rubin) → Brit R&B/disco singer and songwriter, “Sugar Me” (UK #5, 1972), first woman to win an Ivor Novello award for songwriting, “Won’t Somebody Dance With Me?” (Best Ballad, 1974)

1952 ● Donnie Van Zant / (Donald Newton Van Zant) → Lead vocals and frontman for Southern arena rockers .38 Special, “Hold On Loosely” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1981), then Van Zant, brother of deceased Lynyrd Skynyrd frontman Ronnie Van Zant

1960 ● David Baerwald → One-half of New wave synth-pop duo David & David, “Welcome To The Boomtown”(Top Rock #8, 1986)

1960 ● Nick “The Head” Hallam / (Nick Hallam) → Producer, co-founder of Gee Street Records and co-leader of Brit hip hop/electro-dance Stereo MCs, “Step It Up” (#58, Dance/Club #25, 1992)

1961 ● Rob B. / (Robert Charles Birch) → Co-founder of Gee Street Records and co-leader/vocals for Brit hip hop/electro-dance Stereo MCs, “Step It Up” (#58, Dance/Club #25, 1992)

1976 ● Tai Anderson → Bassist in Grammy-winning Christian rock quartet Third Day, “Born Again” (Hot Christian Songs #3, 2009)

June 12

1909 ● Archie Bleyer / (Archibald Martin Bleyer) → Songwriter, bandleader, musical director for Arthur Godfrey‘s radio and TV programs from 1946 to 1953, pop recording artist (“The Naughty Lady Of Shady Lane”, #26, 1954), producer (The Everly Brothers), Cadence Records owner (Andy Williams, The Chordettes, Johnny Tillotson, Lenny Welch and others), husband of Chordette Janet Ertel and father-in-law of Phil Everly, died from the effects of Parkinson’s disease on 3/20/1989, age 79

1914 ● Bill Kenny / (William Francis Kenny, Jr.) → The “Godfather of Doo-Wop,” guitarist and tenor vocals for pioneering early 30s black R&B/doo wop group The Ink Spots, “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” (#2, R&B #1, 1943), continued with various incarnations of the group through the 50s and followed with a successful solo career and host of his own musical variety show, died from respiratory illness on 3/23/1978, age 63

1928 ● Vic Damone / (Vito Rocco Farinola) → Prototypical Italian/American pop and Big Ban crooner with a smooth, resonant baritone and several Top 10 hits, including “You’re Breaking My Heart” (#1, 1949) and “On The Street Where You Live” (#4, 1958), made a highly successful transition to TV variety shows, movies and Las Vegas nightclubs when rock ‘n’ roll eclipsed pop balladeers, continued to perform until 2001, died from respiratory failure on 2/11/2018, age 89

1930 ● Jim Nabors / (James Thurston Nabors) → Opera, gospel and pop singer with a booming baritone voice and dozens of albums, including six gold or platinum awards and a lone minor hit, “Love Me With All Your Heart” (CB #111, 1966), better known as the lovable, bumbling bumpkin Gomer Pyle on The Andy Griffith Show (1962-1964) and Gomer Pyle M.C. (1964-1969), and for singing the unofficial state anthem “Back Home In Indiana” before the start of the Indianapolis 500 auto race in nearly every year from 1972 to 2014, died from auto-immune system complications on 11/30/2017, age 87

1932 ● Charlie Feathers / (Charles Arthur Feathers) → Influential but unheralded blues, country and rockabilly singer and songwriter, early fixture at Sun Records where he recorded several singles and co-wrote Elvis Presley‘s “I Forgot To Remember To Forget” (Country #1, 1955), left for rivals Meteor and King Records in the late 50s and cut several now-classic rockabilly singles, died following a stroke on 8/29/1998, age 66

1937 ● Chips Moman / (Lincoln Wayne Moman) → Grammy-winning songwriter, producer and music executive, left Stax Records in 1964 to found American Sound Studios, produced over 100 hits in the 60s and 70s, including “Keep On Dancing” by The Gentrys (#4, 1965), “The Letter” by The Box Tops (#1, 1967) and “In The Ghetto” by Elvis Presley (#3, 1969), co-wrote the Grammy-winning “(Hey Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song” for B.J. Thomas (#1, 1975), moved to Nashville and country music and recorded hits for many top artists, including “You Were Always On My Mind” for Willie Nelson (#5, Country #1, 1982), died from emphysema on 6/13/2016, age 79.

1941 ● Chick Corea / (Armando Anthony Corea) → Grammy-winning jazz and electric jazz fusion pianist/synthesizer musician, composer, bandleader, played with Miles Davis, Stanley Clarke, Bobby McFerrin and others, solo

1941 ● Roy Harper → Brit songwriter and folk-psych-rock singer, lead vocals on Pink Floyd‘s “Have A Cigar” (1975), Led Zeppelin‘s “Hat’s Of To Roy Harper” is a tribute to him

1942 ● Len Barry / (Leonard Borisoff) → Lead and tenor vocals for doo wop a cappella harmony turned early garage-rock/dance craze The Dovells, “Bristol Stomp” (#2, 1961), then blue-eyed Philly soul singer, “1-2-3” (#2, R&B #11, 1965)

1943 ● Reg Presley / (Reginald Maurice Ball) → Lead singer for 60s garage/proto-punk/”caveman rock” The Troggs, “Wild Thing” (#1, 1966), used royalties from his composition “Love Is All Around” (Wet Wet Wet, Adult Contemporary #8, 1994) to fund research into crop circles and other paranormalities and publish a book, Wild Things They Don’t Tell Us, in 2002, died from lung cancer on 2/4/2013, a age 69

1944 ● Howard Cowart → Blue-eyed soul one hit wonder John Fred & His Playboy Band, “Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)” (#1, 1968)

1948 ● Barry Bailey → Lead guitarist for Southern rock Atlanta Rhythm Section, “Imaginary Lover” (#7, 1978)

1949 ● John Wetton / (John Kenneth Wetton) → Bassist, songwriter and vocals for blues/art rock Family, “In My Own Time” (UK #4, 1971), “In My Own Time” (UK #4, 1971), then joined a revamped prog rock King Crimson in 1972 and appeared on three albums, played with Roxy Music, Uriah Heep, U.K. and Wishbone Ash before co-founding mainstream pop-rock Asia (“Heat Of The Moment,” #4, UK #46, 1982), collaborated with others and issued 20-odd solo albums in the 90s and 00s, died from colon cancer on 1/31/2017, age 67

1951 ● Bun E. Carlos / (Brad Carlson) → Drummer for power pop Cheap Trick, “I Want You To Want Me” (#7, 1979) and “The Flame” (#1, 1988)

1951 ● Brad Delp → Lead vocals for 70s-80s arena rock Boston, “More Than A Feeling” (#5, 1976), committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning in at his home in New Hampshire on 3/9/2007, age 55

1952 ● Junior Brown / (Jamieson Brown) → Country-rock bandleader and guitarist known for playing a “gut-steel” hybrid of electric and lap steel guitars, played with Asleep At The Wheel, solo albums since 1990

1952 ● Peter Farndon → Bassist for post-punk New Wave hard pop-rock The Pretenders, “Back On The Chain Gang” (#5, 1982), fired from the band in late 1982, died from a drug overdose on 4/14/1983, age 30

1953 ● Rocky Burnette / (Jonathan Burnette) → Rowdy, high energy rockabilly revival singer and songwriter, “Tired Of Toein’ The Line” (#8, 1980), son of legendary Johnny

1959 ● John Linnell / (John Sidney Linnell) → Keyboards, accordion and saxophone for alt pop-rock They Might Be Giants, “Birdhouse In Your Soul” (#3, Modern Rock, 1990)

1960 ● Meredith Ann Brooks → Pop-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Bitch” (#2, 1997)

1960 ● Michael Hausman → Drummer for New Wave synth-pop-rock ‘Til Tuesday, “Voices Carry” (#8, 1985), artist manager

1962 ● Grandmaster Dee / (Drew Carter) → Vocals for rap/R&B “new jack swing” Whodini, “Five Minutes Of Funk” (1984) from the acclaimed album Escape

1965 ● Robin Wilson → Vocals and guitar for power-pop Gin Blossoms, “Found Out About You” (Modern Rock #1, 1994), solo

1968 ● Bobby Sheehan / (Robert Vaughan Sheehan) → Bassist for blues-rock jam band Blues Traveler, “Run-Around” (#8, 1995), died of a drug overdose on 8/20/1999, age 31

1969 ● Bardi Martin → Bassist for grunge-rock Candlebox, “Far Behind” (#18, 1994)

1972 ● Bounty Killer / (Rodney Basil Price) → Jamaican reggae and dancehall singer, “Deadly Zone” (#79, Rap #8, 1998)

1977 ● Kenny Wayne Shepherd / (Kenny Wayne Brobst) → Self-taught blues-rock guitarist and singer/songwriter, “Blue On Black” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1997)

1979 ● Robyn / (Robin Miriam Carlsson) → Swedish dance/pop singer, “Do You Know (What It Takes)” (#7, 1997)

June 13

1913 ● Ben Raleigh → Prolific pop lyricist, wrote “Tell Laura I Love Her” for Ray Peterson (#7, 1960) and the theme song “Scooby Doo, Where Are You?” to the Hanna-Barbera cartoon show, died in a home fire on 2/26/1997, age 83

1934 ● Uriel Jones → Drummer in Motown house band The Funk Brothers, which provided nearly all instrumentation behind every Motown hit, died from a heart attack on 3/24/2009, age 74

1940 ● Bobby Freeman / (Robert Thomas Freeman) → Dance craze R&B/soul-pop singer and songwriter who wrote and recorded the enduring hit, “Do You Want To Dance” (#5, 1958) while still a teenager, the song has been covered in multiple variations by The Beach Boys, John Lennon, The Ramones, Bette Midler and others, died following a heart attack on 1/23/2017, age 76

1941 ● Marv Tarplin / (Marvin Tarplin) → Session guitarist and songwriter for Motown Records, collaborated with Smokey Robinson, co-wrote and played on many R&B hits, including “Tracks Of My Tears” (#16, R&B #2, 1965) for The Miracless, left Motown in 1973 to work with Robinson in his solo career for the next 35 years, died from unspecified causes on 9/30/2011 , age 70

1942 ● James Carr → Underappreciated R&B/Southern soul singer, “Dark End Of The Street” (#77, R&B #10, 1967), died of lung cancer on 1/17/2001, age 58

1943 ● Esther Ofarim → One half of Israeli folk-pop-rock vocal duo Esther & Abi, “Cinderella Rockafeller” (UK #1, 1968)

1943 ● Dyke Christian / (Arlester Christian) → Bassist, singer and frontman for 60s R&B/funk Dyke And The Blazers, the early backing band for The O’Jays, wrote “Funky Broadway” for Wilson Pickett (#8, Soul #1, 1967), had several minor hits with his band until he was shot to death on a Phoenix, AZ street on 3/13/1971, age 27
1946 ● Paul Buckmaster / (Paul John Buckmaster) → Composer, conductor and arranger best known for a nearly 50 year career creating the orchestral arrangements to well-known pop, rock, jazz and country hits by multiple artists, including David Bowie‘s “Space Oddity” (#124, UK #5, 1969), Elton John‘s “Your Song” (#8, UK #7, 1970), Carly Simon‘s “You’re So Vain” (#1, UK #1, 1972) ), plus albums by Grateful Dead (Terrapin Station, 1977), Counting Crows (Recovering The Satellites, 1996), Guns ‘N Roses (Chinese Democracy, 2008), Heart (Beautiful Broken, 2016) and many others, died from undisclosed causes on 11/7/2017, age 71

1947 ● John Kahn → Bass guitarist and session musician in the 60s and 70s for Mike Bloomfield, Brewer & Shipley, Maria Muldaur and others, best known for his 25 year collaboration with the Grateful Dead‘s Jerry Garcia in multiple projects, including The Jerry Garcia Band, bluegrass Old & In The Way, acoustic duo Garcia & Kahn plus other efforts with Merle Saunders and Howard Wales, died in his sleep on 5/30/1996, age 48

1949 ● Dennis Locorriere → Guitarist for AM pop-rock Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, “Sylvia’s Mother” (#5, 1972) plus nine other Top 40 hits

1951 ● Howard Leese → Guitar and keyboards for hard rock Heart, “These Dreams” (#1, 1986)

1951 ● Jorge Santana. / (Guillermo Jorge Santana) → Guitarist, bandleader and younger brother of Latin rock superstar Carlos Santana, joined R&B/horn-rock Malibus in the late 60s and helped transform the band into influential, smooth Chicano rock Malo (“Suavecito,” #18, AC #8, 1972), went solo in 1976 and issued five albums in his name over 35 years, plus one with Latin rock supergroup Fania All-Stars, one as a sideman to his brother, and one in full collaboration (Santana Brothers, 1994), continued to tour with Malo on the oldies circuit until dying from natural causes on 5/14/2020, age 68.

1954 ● Bo Donaldson / (Robert Donaldson) → Pop-rock singer, keyboardist, trumpeter and frontman for The Heywoods, “Billy Don’t Be a Hero” (#1, 1974)

1957 ● Rolf Brendel → Drummer for German pop-rock band Nena, “99 Luftballons” (#2, 1984)

1963 ● Paul DeLisle → Bassist for neo-garage/quirky Smash Mouth, “Walkin’ On The Sun” (Adult Top 40 #1, 1997)

1963 ● Robbie Merrill → Bassist for hard rock Godsmack, “Straight Out Of Line” (Mainstream #1, 2003)

1968 ● David Gray → Brit singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Babylon” (Adult Top 40 #8, 2000)

1968 ● Deneice Pearson → Vocals for Brit family R&B/dance-pop quintet 5 Star, “Can’t Wait Another Minute” (#41, Dance/Club #7, 1986) and fifteen Top 40 singles in native England

1969 ● Søren Rasted → Co-founder, keyboards and drum machine for Danish dance-pop Aqua, “Barbie Girl” (#7, 1997), which drew a lawsuit from Mattel for its sexual content, solo, producer, actor

1970 ● Rivers Cuomo → Singer, songwriter, guitarist and leader for post-grunge alt rock Weezer, “Beverly Hills” (#10, 2005)

1978 ● J Brown / (Jason Paul Brown) → Vocals for pre-fabricated hip hop dance-pop boy band quintet Five, “When The Lights Go Out” (#10, UK #4, 1998)

1981 ● Kymberley Marsh → Singer for pre-fab mockstar dance-pop Hear’Say, “Pure And Simple” (UK #1, 2001), quit the group in 2002 to pursue an acting career

1985 ● Raz-B / (De’Mario Monte Thornton) → Vocals for R&B/hip hop urban boy band B2K, “Bump, Bump, Bump” (#1, 2002)

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This Week’s Birthdays (April 26 – May 2)

Happy Birthday this week to:

April 26
1886 ● Ma Rainey / (Gertrude Pridgett) → The “Mother of the Blues,” early female blues singer known for risqué lyrics, often about her own bi-sexuality, issued over 100 songs in the 1920s, many of which were national hits, recorded several with Louis Armstrong, including the earliest version of the now-blues standard “See See Rider” (1924), toured with gospel legend Thomas Dorsey in the Wildcats Jazz Band in the late 20s, retired from music and spent her final years operating theaters in Columbus, Georgia, died from a heart attack on 12/22/1939, age 53.
1919 ● Johnny Shines / (John Ned Shines) → Top slide guitarist and Delta blues singer, performed with Robert Johnson, Big Walter Horton, Willie Dixon and Robert Lockwood, Jr., died on 4/20/1992, age 72
1925 ● Jorgen Ingmann → Danish jazz guitarist turned one hit wonder instrumental pop Jorgen Ingmann & His Guitars, covered “Apache” (#2, 1961)
1938 ● Duane Eddy → Influential electric guitar pioneer, rockabilly star and “twangy” instrumental rocker with fifteen Top 40 hits between 1958 and 1963, including “Rebel Rouser” (#6, 1958), continues to perform into the 10s
1938 ● Maurice Williams → Frontman and lead vocals for R&B/doo wop The Zodiacs, “Stay” (#1, 1960), solo
1940 ● Giorgio Moroder / (Hansjörg Moroder) → Disco and synth-pop producer including Donna Summer, “Love To Love You Baby” (#1, 1976), film soundtrack composer for Midnight Express (1978), Flashdance (1983), Top Gun (1986) and others
1941 ● Claudine Clark → One hit wonder singer and composer who, unlike most 60s female pop stars, wrote her own hit song, “Party Lights” (#5, R&B #3, 1962)
1942 ● Bobby Rydell / (Robert Ridarelli) → Former teen idol pop singer, “Wild One” (#2, 1960), plus 17 other Top 40 hits, now successful nightclub and concert performer
1943 ● Gary Wright → Keyboards and vocals for Brit blues-rock Spooky Tooth, then synth-rock solo, “Dream Weaver” (#2, 1976)
1945 ● Tony Murray → Bassist for 60s garage/proto-punk/”caveman rock” The Troggs, “Wild Thing” (#1, 1966)
1946 ● Bucky Wilkin / (John Wilkin) → Guitarist, vocals and songwriting for country-tinged surf rock Ronny & The Daytonas, “G.T.O.” (#4, 1964)
1946 ● Vito Balsamo → Vocals for New York R&B/doo wop one hit wonder Vito & The Salutations, “Unchained Melody” (1963)
1951 ● Nick Garvey → Bassist and songwriter for early pub rock Ducks Deluxe, then power pop/rock The Motors, “Airport” (UK #4, 1978)
1952 ● Neol Davies → Founder and guitarist for multi-racial 2 Tone ska revival The Selecter, “On My Radio” (UK #8, 1979)
1959 ● John Corabi → Journeyman heavy metal guitar and vocals, hair-metal Mötley Crüe, “Dr. Feelgood” (#6, 1989), Ratt, others
1960 ● Roger Taylor → Drummer for New Wave pop-rock Duran Duran, “Hungry Like The Wolf” (#3, 1982) and “(Reach Up For The) Sunrise” (Dance/Club #1, 2001)
1961 ● Chris Mars → Drummer for alt-rock pioneers The Replacements, “I’ll Be You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1989)
1970 ● Ruth-Ann Boyle → Vocals for Brit breakbeat/trip-hop trio Olive, “You’re Not Alone” (Dance/Club #5, 1997)
1970 ● T-Boz / (Tionne Tenese Watkins) → Vocals for R&B/urban soul-dance-pop girl trio TLC, “Creep” (#1, 1994)
1971 ● Jay DeMarcus / (Stanley Wayne DeMarcus, Jr.) → Bassist and harmony vocals for country-pop Rascal Flatts, “Here Come Goodbye” (#11, Country #1, 2009)
1975 ● Joey Jordison → Drummer for Grammy-winning alt metal/rap-metal Slipknot, “Duality” (Mainstream Rock #5, 2004)
1976 ● Jose Antonio Pasillas II → Drummer for alt-metal Incubus, “Drive” (#9, 2001)
1981 ● Ms. Dynamite / (Niomi McLean Daley) → Brit R&B/hip hop/garage singer and rapper, “It Takes More” (UK #7, 2002)
1982 ● Jonathan Lee → Vocals for pre-fab teen pop S Club 7, “Never Had A Dream Come True” (#10, 2001)

April 27
1904 ● Syd Nathan → Music executive who contributed to the development of R&B and rock ‘n’ roll music through his ownership of King Records and its subsidiaries, which he founded in 1943 and brought obscure young artists to the national stage, including Hank Ballard & The Midnighters (“Work With Me Annie,” R&B #1, 1954) and James Brown (“Please, Please, Please,” R&B #6, 1956), who recorded on King through the 60s (“I Got You (I Feel Good),” #3, R&B #1, 1965), the label became the sixth largest record company in the US before the mid-60s payola scandal impacted sales, died from heart disease on 5/5/1968, age 63
1932 ● Maxine Brown / (Ella Maxine Brown Russell) → With her younger siblings, Jim Ed and Bonnie, vocals in 50s-60s country-folk harmony trio The Browns, the group started in 1954 and performed regularly on the Louisiana Hayride radio and TV show, toured with then 20-year-old Elvis Presley in 1955 and had the huge crossover hit “The Three Bells” (#1, Country #1, 1959), retired in 1967 to raise a family but returned for a brief solo career in 1969 and for Browns reunions over the years, published her autobiography, Looking Back to See in 2005, died from complications of heart and kidney disease on 1/21/2019, age 87.
1932 ● Casey Kasem / (Kemil Amen Kasem) → Legendary and iconic radio DJ who confessed to not loving rock ‘n’ roll but built a long and lucrative career from it , creator and long-time host of one of the most popular syndicated music programs on radio, American Top 40, voice-over artist for TV commercials and shows (“Shaggy” of Scooby-Do cartoons), died from a degenerative neurological and muscular disease on 6/15/2014, age 82
1944 ● Cuba Gooding, Sr. → Lead vocals for R&B/romantic soul The Main Ingredient, “Everybody Plays The Fool” (#3, 1972) and eight other R&B Top 40 hits, found dead in his car on a busy street in a Los Angeles neighborhood on 4/20/2017, age 72
1947 ● Anne Peebles → R&B/Southern soul singer, “I Can’t Stand The Rain” (#38, R&B #6, 1973)
1947 ● Gordon Haskell → Folk-pop singer/songwriter, briefly with King Crimson, then sessions and solo, resurfaced in 2001 with “How Wonderful You Are” (UK #2, 2001) and a UK #2 album, Harry’s Bar
1947 ● Peter Ham → Guitar, vocals, chief songwriter 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 4/24/1975, age 27
1947 ● Bob Esty / (Robert Malcolm Esty II) → Songwriter, producer and arranger best known for hit collaborations with Donna Summer, Cher and Barbra Streisand during the height of the disco era at disco-king Casablanca Records, produced and arranged Summer‘s Grammy-winning “Last Dance” (#3, 1978) and co-wrote most tracks and produced Cher‘s album Take Me Home (#25, 1979), died after a short battle with metastatic cancer on 9/27/2019, age 72.
1948 ● Kate Pierson → Bouffant-haired vocalist and frontwoman for campy alt-dance-rock The B-52’s, “Love Shack” (#3, 1989)
1949 ● Clive Taylor → Bassist for Welsh pop-rock Amen Corner, “(If Paradise Is) Half As Nice” (UK #1, 1969)
1949 ● Herb Murrell → Vocals for R&B/Philly soul The Stylistics, “You Make Me Feel Brand New” (#2, 1974) plus 15 R&B Top 40 singles
1951 ● Ace Frehley / (Paul “Ace” Frehley) → Influential hard rock guitarist and vocals for campy hard/glam-rock Kiss, “Detroit Rock City” (#7, 1976), solo, “New York Groove” (#13, 1979)
1954 ● Wally Palmar / (Volodymyr Palamarchuk) → Ukrainian-American founding member and lead vocalist for New Wave pop-rock The Romantics, “What I Like About You” (#49, 1980) and “Talking In Your Sleep” (#3, 1984), later played with Ringo Starr‘s All-Star Band and co-founded garage rock supergroup The Empty Hearts
1959 ● Marco Pirroni → Guitarist for post-punk New Wave glam-pop Adam & The Ants, “Goody Two Shoes” (#12, 1982)
1959 ● Sheena Easton / (Sheena Shirley Orr) → Grammy-winning pop singer, “Morning Train (Nine To Five)” (#1, 1980) and James Bond movie theme song “For Your Eyes Only” (#4, 1981) and 11 other Top 40 singles, stage and TV actress
1960 ● Jake Black / (John Black) → Scottish musician with the pseudonym “The Very Reverend D. Wayne Love” in quirky, country-blues-acid-house fusion band Alabama 3, best known for co-writing “Woke Up This Morning” (UK #78, 1997), the memorable opening theme to the cutting-edge, hugely popular TV drama The Sopranos, hospitalized with an acute respiratory illness days after performing at a festival in Lancashire, England, and died on 5/21/2019, age 59.
1969 ● Mica Paris / (Michelle Wallen) → Brit R&B/soul-pop singer, “My One Temptation” (#97, Adult Contemporary #8, 1989)
1972 ● Bob Coombes → Keyboards for Brit punk-pop trio Supergrass, “Alright/Time” (Modern Rock #1, 1995)
1979 ● Will Boyd → Bassist for Grammy-winning goth-pop-metal Evanescence, “Bring Me To Life” (#5, 2003)
1984 ● Patrick Stump → Lead singer, rhythm guitarist and songwriter for alt rock/punk-pop Fall Out Boy, “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race” (#2, 2007), solo
1984 ● Yonah Higgins → Vocals for Brit R&B/dance-pop teen sibling girl-group Cleopatra, “Cleopatra’s Theme” (#26, 1998)

April 28
1941 ● Ann-Margret / (Ann-Margret Olsson) → Swedish-American pop singer and stage, film and TV actress known more for her performances in Bye Bye Birdie (1963), Viva Las Vegas (1964) with Elvis Presley, Tommy (1975) as “Mrs. Walker” and over 60 other roles, also charted seven songs, including “I Just Don’t Understand” (#17, 1961) and “Love Rush” (Dance #8, 1979), continues to appear in movies and on TV into her late 70s
1941 ● Peter Anders / (Peter Andreoli) → Vocals and guitar for pop-rock trio The Videls, “Mr. Lonely” (#73, 1960), changed name to surf-pop The Trade Winds, “New York’s A Lonely Town” (#32, 1965), then to pop-rock The Innocence, “There’s Got To Be A Word!” (#34, 1966), also wrote songs in collaboration with Phil Spector
1943 ● Fantastic Johnny C. / (John Corley) → Gospel turned R&B/soul one hit wonder singer, “Boogaloo Down Broadway” (#7, R&B #5, 1968)
1945 ● John Wolters → Drummer for AM pop-rock Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, “Sylvia’s Mother” (#5, 1972) plus nine other Top 40 hits, died of liver cancer on 6/16/1997, age 52
1946 ● Beverly Ann Bivens → Co-founder and lead singer for folk-pop harmony group We Five (“You Were On My Mind,” #3, AC #1, 1965), left the music industry when the group broke up in 1967
1947 ● Peaches Barker / (Francine Hurd “Peaches” Barker) → One half of R&B/soul-pop vocal duo Peaches & Herb, “Let’s Fall In Love” (R&B #11, 1966), died on 8/13/2005, age 58
1949 ● Steve Gilpin → Co-founder and lead vocalist for Mi-Sex, one of the most popular New Wave bands in Australia and New Zealand from the 70s to the late 90s, “Computer Games (AUS #1, 1979), died following a car accident on 1/6/1992, age 42
1952 ● Chuck Leavell / (Charles Alfred Leavell) → Piano and keyboards for Southern rock giants The Allman Brothers Band, left in 1976 to co-found jazz-rock fusion Sea Level, “That’s Your Secret” (#50, 1978), session musician and keyboardist for Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones and others
1953 ● Kim Gordon → Bassist for alt rock/avant-garde Sonic Youth, “100%” (Modern Rock #4, 1992)
1955 ● Eddie Jobson → Violin for Brit prog/avant-garde rock Curved Air, “Back Street Luv” (UK #4, 1974) and prog rock Roxy Music, “Love Is The Drug” (#30, 1976)
1956 ● Jimmy Barnes → Lead vocals for hugely popular Aussie pub rock/blues-rock Cold Chisel, “My Baby” (Mainstream Rock #32, 1981), then successful solo career with seven Australia #1 albums
1958 ● Enid Williams → Founding member, vocals and bass guitar for early all-girl heavy metal group Painted Lady, which became Girlschool, “Hit And Run” (UK #32, 1981)
1966 ● Too Short / (Todd Shaw) → Successful solo 80-90s West Coast rap star, “The Ghetto” (Rap #3, 1990), came out of “early retirement” with “More Freaky Tales” (Rap #3, 1999) and subsequent solo and collaboration hits
1968 ● Daisy Berkowitz / (Scott Mitchell Putesky) → Guitarist and co-founder of industrial-pop-metal Marilyn Manson, “The Dope Show” (Mainstream Rock #12, 1998), later collaborated with alt rock Jack Off Jill
1968 ● Howard Donald → Drummer, pianist, singer and dancer for Brit teen new jack R&B/soul-pop Take That, “Back For Good” (#7, 1995), solo work, then reformed Take That, “Patience” (UK #1, 2006)
1973 ● Big Gipp / (Cameron Gipp) → Southern rapper, member of Goodie Mob, solo album plus collaborative work with Ali, Nelly, Outkast and others

April 29
1899 ● Duke Ellington / (Edward Kennedy Ellington) → Jazz composer, 50-year bandleader, film score and stage musical writer/producer, unquestioned giant of American popular music, “Take The ‘A’ Train” (1941), died from lung cancer and pneumonia on 5/24/1974, age 75.
1915 ● Donald Mills → Lead tenor vocals in six-decade jazz and pop quartet The Mills Brothers (“Cab Driver,” #23, Adult #3, 1968), best known for approximating instrument sounds with vocals, first as a novelty act in the vaudeville era of the 20s and later as the music behind their singing, continued to perform until he was the last remaining brother, then toured with his son until his death on 11/13/1999, age 84
1927 ● Big Jay McNeely / (Cecil James McNeely) → Early and influential tenor saxophonist whose “honking” style and flamboyant stage presence helped place the saxophone front and center in the earliest days of rock ‘n’ roll before the electric guitar took over in the mid-50s, issued two dozen albums and several charting singles, including the instrumental “Deacon’s Hop” (R&B #1, 1949) and the ballad “There Is Something On Your Mind” (R&B Top 10, 1959), continued to record and tour, mostly in Europe, into the 10s, died from prostate cancer on 9/16/2018, age 91
1928 ● Carl Gardner → Lead tenor and 50-year soul vocalist, first for R&B/soul-doo wop The Robins, “Smokey Joe’s Café” (#79, R&B #10, 1955), then with offshoot soul-pop The Coasters as lead singer, “Yakety Yak” (#1, 1958) and “Charlie Brown” (#2, 1959), fronted the group until his death from a heart attack on 6/12/2011, age 83
1931 ● Lonnie Donegan / (Anthony James Donegan) → English rock ‘n’ roll pioneer singer who launched the skiffle craze, “Rock Island Line” (#8, 1956), plus over 30 UK Top 40 singles, died from a heart attack shortly before a scheduled appearance with The Rolling Stones in a memorial to George Harrison on 11/3/2002, age 71
1933 ● Willie Nelson / (Willie Hugh Nelson) → Country-pop songwriter turned Grammy-winning “outlaw” country superstar, “On The Road Again” (#20, Country #1, 1980)
1933 ● Rod McKuen / (Rodney Marvin McKuen) → The “unofficial poet laureate of America,” poet, lyricist, songwriter and bridge between the 50s Beat generation and the 70s New Age movement, released dozens of books of poetry and over 100 albums of vocal and spoken-word music, most of which was commercially successful if not critically-acclaimed, his over 1,500 songs were covered by Johnny Cash, The Kingston Trio, Barbara Streisand and many others, died from respiratory failure caused by pneumonia on 1/29/2015, age 81
1935 ● Otis Rush / (Otis Rush, Jr.) → Innovative and influential “West Side” Chicago blues guitarist, tenor singer and songwriter (“I Can’t Quit You Baby,” R&B #6, 1956), penned the oft-covered masterpiece “Double Trouble” (1958), from which Stevie Ray Vaughan derived his band’s name, inducted into the Blue Hall of Fame in 1984, won a Grammy Award in 1999 and named #53 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Guitarists in 2015, died from complications of a 2003 stroke on 9/29/2018, age 83
1936 ● Albee Cracolici → Baritone vocals for blue-eyed soul/doo wop The Mystics, “Hushabye” (1959)
1936 ● April Stevens / (Carol LoTempio) → Grammy-winning pop singer, duet with Nino Tempo (her brother Antonio), “Deep Purple” (#1, 1963)
1942 ● Emma Pought / (Emma Pought Patron) → With her teenage sister, Jannie and three other teens from her Spanish Harlem housing complex, founding member and lead/alto vocals in rare 50s R&B girl group The Bobbettes (“Mr. Lee,” #6, R&B #1, 1957), the first all-girl group to have a Top 10 hit (and an R&B #1), continued to record and perform into the 70s
1942 ● Klaus Voorman → Grammy-winning German musician, producer and artist, bassist for Manfred Mann, “Do Wah Diddy Diddy” (#1, 1964), session musician for the Plastic Ono Band, George Harrison, John Lennon, Ringo Starr, Carly Simon, Lou Reed, Harry Nilsson and others, designed album covers for The Beatles (Revolver) and others
1942 ● Vincent Poncia, Jr. → Vocals and guitar for pop-rock trio The Videls, “Mr. Lonely” (#73, 1960), changed name to surf-pop The Trade Winds, “New York’s A Lonely Town” (#32, 1965), then to pop-rock The Innocence, “There’s Got To Be A Word!” (#34, 1966), also wrote songs in collaboration with Phil Spector
1943 ● Duane Allen → Vocals for long-running country/gospel/folk harmony quartet The Oak Ridge Boys, “Elvira” (#5, Country #1, 1981)
1944 ● June LeBell / (June Wendie LeBell) → Professional concert soprano who became one of the first women to be hired as an on-air announcer and interviewer in the male-dominated commercial classical music radio industry, over a 30-year career became a revered and respected personality on WQXR in New York, died from ovarian cancer on 4/30/2017, age 73
1945 ● Tammi Terrell / (Thomasina Winifred Montgomery) → R&B/soul vocalist for Motown, performed solo and frequently in duets with Marvin Gaye, including “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” (1967), died from a brain tumor on 3/16/1970, age 24
1945 ● Hugh Hopper → Founding member and bass guitarist for Canterbury-scene psych-art-jazz-prog rock fusion Soft Machine and other related bands in the 60s and 70s, collaborated with multiple artists in various progressive and experimental music projects, issued two obscure solo albums, died from leukemia on 6/7/2009, age 64
1946 ● Lorraine Chandler / (Ermastine Lewis) → Detroit R&B/soul and funk singer, songwriter and one of the first black female producers, in the mid-60s teamed with famed musician and producer Jack Ashford to form production company Pied Piper, writing songs for Eddie Parker, the O’Jays, Billy Sha-Rae and others, recorded several singles in the 70s, “rediscovered” in the late 70s by the British Northern soul revival movement and enjoyed a second career recording in Detroit and performing at festivals in the UK, died from undisclosed causes on 1/2/2020, age 73.
1947 ● Joel Larson → Session drummer with The Turtles, Lee Michaels and others, played with AM Top 40 pop-rockers The Grass Roots “Midnight Confessions” (#5, 1968)
1947 ● Tommy James / (Thomas Gregory Jackson) → Frontman and lead vocals for bubblegum-pop Tommy James & The Shondells, “Hanky Panky” (#1, 1966), later psych-pop, “Crimson And Clover” (#1, 1968)
1948 ● Michael Karoli → Founding member, guitarist and violinist for influential experimental/kraut rock Can, “I Want More” (UK #26, 1976), died from cancer on 11/17/2001, age 53
1953 ● King Boy D / (Bill Drummond) → South African-born, Scottish-raised experimental/ambient music composer and producer, record company executive and A&R man, writer, musician with punk-rock Big In Japan, formed art rock KLF, “3 A.M. Eternal” (#5, 1990)
1958 ● Simon Edwards → Guitarrón player for Brit neo-skiffle pop Fairground Attraction, “Perfect” (#80, UK #1, 1988)
1960 ● Phil King → Bass guitar and backing vocals for alt pop/shoegazing band Lush, “Sweetness & Light” (Modern Rock #4, 1990)
1968 ● Carnie Wilson → Vocals for pop-rock all-girl offspring trio Wilson Phillips, “Release Me” (#1, 1990), daughter of The Beach BoysBrian Wilson
1969 ● Master P / (Percy Miller) → New Orleans-based hip hop/gangsta rap star, No Limit record company founder, “I Got The Hook Up” (#16, Rap #1, 1998)
1973 ● Mike Hogan → Bass and rhythm guitars for Irish jangle/dream pop-rock The Cranberries, “Linger” (#8, 1993)
1979 ● Joanne Velda O’Meara → Vocals for pre-fab teen pop S Club 7, “Never Had A Dream Come True” (#10, 2001)
1979 ● Matt Tong → Drums and backing vocals for Brit indie rock Bloc Party, “The Prayer” (UK #4, 2007)
1980 ● Kian Egan → Vocals for Irish pop boy band Westlife, “Swear It Again” (#20, 2000) and 17 UK Top 10 hits
1981 ● Tom Smith → Bass guitar for 00s punk revival/indie rock Editors, “Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors” (UK #7, 2007)

April 30
1896 ● Rev. Gary Davis / (Gary D. Davis) → Highly-regarded ragtime, folk, gospel and blues guitarist with a unique thumb-and-index-finger style, influenced Bob Dylan, Donovan and Taj Mahal, mentor to David Bromberg, Ry Cooder and Jorma Kaukonen, died following a heart attack on 5/5/1972, age 76.
1917 ● Bea Wain / (Beatrice Ruth Wain) → Big Band-era singer with The Larry Clinton Orchestra, recorded four Number 1 hits, including “Heart And Soul” (1939) and “Deep Purple” (1939), left for a solo career after being voted most popular female vocalist in a Billboard college poll, hosted radio talk and music show “Mr. And Mrs. Music” with her husband, radio announcer André Baruch, in New York and Florida from the 40s to the 70s, died from congestive heart failure on 8/19/2017, age 100
1925 ● Johnny Horton → Country/honky tonk historical singer and songwriter, “The Battle of New Orleans” (#1, 1958), died in a car crash while returning home from a concert performance on 11/4/1960, age 35
1929 ● Will Holt → Singer, songwriter, lyricist and librettist, best known for a variety of Broadway shows, including Over Here!, Me And Bessie and Music Is, and for penning the Latin-tinged folk-pop song “Lemon Tree,” which was recorded by Peter, Paul & Mary (#35, AC #12, 1962), among others, and use as an advertising jingle by aerosol furniture polish Lemon Pledge, died from Alzheimer’s disease on 5/31/2015, age 86
1930 ● Bill Buchanan → With partner Dickie Goodman, one half of the pioneering novelty “break in” song genre (prototype of later “sampling” technique) Buchanan & Goodman, “Flying Saucer, Pt. 1-2” (#3, 1956), songwriter and producer, died from cancer on 8/1/1996, age 34
1931 ● Peter La Farge / (Oliver Albee La Farge) → Native American-descendant 50s and 60s Greenwich Village folk singer/songwriter, contemporary of Bob Dylan, wrote or co-wrote numerous songs with Johnny Cash, including “The Ballad Of Ira Hayes” (Country #3, 1964), died of a Thorazine overdose on 10/27/1965, age 34
1936 ● Bobby Gregg / (Robert J. Grego) → Frontman for one hit wonder instrumental rock group Bobby Gregg And His Friends (“The Jam – Part I,” #29, R&B #14, 1962) and session drummer best known for playing on multiple Bob Dylan hits, including “Like A Rolling Stone” (#2, 1965), died of natural causes on 5/3/2014, age 78
1941 ● Johnny Farina → Electric guitar for pop-rock brother duo Santo & Johnny, best known for the guitar instrumental “Sleepwalk” (#1, 1959)
1943 ● Bobby Vee / (Robert Thomas Velline) → Early 60s teen idol pop singer with thirty-eight charting singles, ten of which reached the Top 20, including “Take Good Care Of My Baby” (#1, 1961), his career started when his garage band filled-in at a Fargo, ND dance for the deceased Buddy Holly the night after the Iowa plane crash that killed Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.R. “The Big Bopper’ Richardson in February 1959, continued to perform until contracting Alzheimer’s disease in 2011, died from complications of the disease on 10/24/2016, age 73
1944 ● Richard Shoff → Singer in light folk sunshine-pop, two hit wonder vocal trio The Sandpipers, “Guantanamera” (#9, 1966) and “Come Saturday Morning” (#17, 1970)
1945 ● Mimi Fariña / (Margarita Baez) → Folk singer/songwriter, duets with husband Richard Fariña in the early 60s, then solo after his death in a motorcycle accident, social activist, younger sister of Joan Baez, died of cancer on 7/18/2001, age 56
1947 ● Colonel Bruce Hampton / (Bruce Hampton) → Energetic guitarist, singer and frontman for several eclectic rock bands, widely recognized as an innovator in the creation of improvisational, genre-crossing jam-band music while fronting the Hampton Grease Band, Aquarium Rescue Unit, Code Talkers and others, over the decades his bands opened for jam band leaders The Allman Brothers Band, Grateful Dead, Phish, Dave Matthews Band and many others, collapsed on stage toward the end of a 70th birthday concert in Atlanta and was pronounced dead on 5/1/2017, age 70
1948 ● Wayne Kramer → Guitarist for Detroit proto-punk/garage rockers MC5, “Kick Out The Jams” (#82, 1969), solo
1951 ● Des Tong → Bassist for Brit soft pop-rock Sad Cafe, “Every Day Hurts” (UK #3, 1979)
1953 ● Merrill Osmond → Vocals for family-oriented light pop-rock The Osmonds, ten US Top 40 singles including “One Bad Apple” (#1, 1971)
1958 ● Wonder Mike / (Michael Anthony Wright) → Old school rapper and member of the hip hop trio The Sugarhill Gang, whose “Rapper’s Delight” (#36, R&B #4, 1980) became the first hip hop song to reach the Billboard Top 40
1962 ● Robert Reynolds → Founding member and bassist for Grammy-winning country-rock The Mavericks, “All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down” (Country #13, 1996)
1967 ● Turbo B / (Durron Maurice Bulter) → Frontman and rapper for electronic/beatbox Snap!, “The Power” (#2, Rap #1, 1990), then solo and co-founder of Centory
1968 ● Ben Ayres → Guitar and vocals for mixed-race, Indian/Brit dance-pop Cornershop, “Brimful Of Asha” (Dance #35, UK #1, 1998)
1969 ● Paulo “Destructor”, Jr. / (Paulo Xisto Pinto, Jr.) → Bassist and only remaining original member of Brazilian heavy metal/thrash metal Sepultura, “Roots Bloody Roots” (UK #19, 1996)
1971 ● Choc Dalyrimple / (Christopher Dalyrimple) → Vocals for urban R&B/dance-club brother quartet Soul For Real, “Candy Rain” (#2, 1995)
1971 ● Christopher Henderson → Guitarist for post-grunge alt rock 3 Doors Down, “Kryptonite” (#3, 2000)
1971 ● Darren Emerson → DJ, keyboards and tranceman for electro/trance/dance-pop Underworld, “Two Months Off” (Dance/Club #2, 2002)
1972 ● J.R. Richards → Songwriter and lead singer for melodic hard rock Dishwalla, “Counting Blue Cars” (#15, 1996), solo
1973 ● Jeff Timmons → Vocals for American adult contemporary pop-rock boy band 98 Degrees, “Give Me Just One Night (Una Noche)” (#2, 2000)
1981 ● Justin Vernon → Singer, songwriter and founding member of Grammy-winning indie folk-pop Bon Iver, the 2012 Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album Bon Iver, Bon Iver
1982 ● Cleopatra Madonna Higgins → Vocals and songwriter for Brit R&B/dance-pop teen sibling girl-group Cleopatra, “Cleopatra’s Theme” (#26, 1998)
1982 ● Lloyd Banks / (Christopher Lloyd) → Rapper and vocals with 50 Cent and Tony Yayo in rap trio G-Unit, “Stunt 101” (#13, Rap #5, 2003), later solo, “On Fire” (#8, Rap #3, 2004)
1987 ● Nikki Webster → Aussie pop singer and model, “Strawberry Kisses” (Australian #2, 2001), sang at the 2000 Sydney Summer Olympics opening ceremony
1989 ● Baauer / (Harry Bauer Rodrigues) → Emo, dance and trap and bass music one hit wonder producer, “Harlem Shake” (#1, 2013)

May 01
1891 ● Charley Patton → The “Father of Delta Blues,” influential Mississippi Delta blues guitarist, singer and songwriter, his “Pony Blues” (1929) is included in the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress, died on 4/28/1934, age 43
1907 ● Kate Smith / (Kathryn Elizabeth Smith) → The “First Lady of Radio,” a contrello singer and media star in the 40s and 50s, best known for her booming renditions of “God Bless America”, died from diabetes-related respiratory arrest on 6/17/1986, age 79
1924 ● Big Maybelle / (Mabel Louise Smith) → R&B singer known for her early version of “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” (1955) and the hit “Candy” (R&B #11, 1956), died in a diabetic coma on 1/23/1972, age 47
1929 ● Sonny James / (James Hugh Loden) → The “Southern Gentleman”, country-pop crooner/songwriter, “Young Love” (#1, Country #1, 1957), scored a five-year run of 16 back-to-back #1 country hits (among 23 total #1’s and 72 country chart hits from the late 50s through the early 80s), died of natural causes on 2/22/2016, age 87
1930 ● Little Walter / (Marion Walter Jacobs) → Innovative blues harpist (“My Babe,” R&B #1, 1955) and the first to amplify the harmonica, developed the distorted echoing sound and became the only Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee specifically for work with the harmonica, died from a coronary blood clot on 2/15/1968, age 37
1939 ● Judy Collins / (Judith Marjorie Collins) → Interpretative folk singer and occasional songwriter best known for her version of Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now” (#8, 1968)
1945 ● Rita Coolidge → Versatile Grammy-winning singer/songwriter, “(Your Love Has Lifted Me) Higher And Higher” (#2, 1977), backing vocals for Joe Cocker, Delaney & Bonnie and others, married to singer/actor Kris Kristofferson (1973 – 1980)
1945 ● Carson Whitsett → Keyboardist, songwriter and record producer, Stax and Malaco Records session musician, worked with or wrote songs for Paul Simon, Wilson Pickett, Etta James and many others, including the adult Contemporary hit “Why Not Me” for Fred Knobloch (#18, AC #1, 1980), died from brain cancer on 5/8/2007, age 62
1945 ● Reather Dixon / (Reather Dixon Turner) → With four other teens from her Spanish Harlem housing complex, founding member and lead/alto vocals in rare 50s R&B girl group The Bobbettes (“Mr. Lee,” #6, R&B #1, 1957), the first all-girl group to have a Top 10 hit (and an R&B #1), continued to record and perform into the 70s, died from cardiac arrest on 1/7/2014, age 69
1946 ● Jerry Weiss → Trumpet and flugelhorn player and founding member of jazz-rock/pop-rock fusion band Blood, Sweat & Tears, “Spinning Wheel” (#2, 1969), left by 1970 for an unsuccessful solo career
1946 ● Nick Fortuna → Bassist for Chicago-based pop-horn-rock The Buckinghams, “Kind Of A Drag” (#1, 1967)
1954 ● Ray Parker, Jr. → Guitarist, songwriter, producer and bandleader, sessions with The Spinners, Barry White, Stevie Wonder and others, formed Raydio in 1977, “Jack And Jill” (#8, 1978), wrote and performed the movie theme song “Ghostbusters” (#1, 1984)
1957 ● Rick Driscoll → Guitar and vocals for glam pop-rock Kenny, “The Bump” (UK #3, 1975)
1957 ● Steve Farris → Guitarist for 80s atmospheric pop-rock quartet Mr. Mister, “Kyrie” (#1, 1985)
1959 ● Phillip Smith → Saxophone for New Wave funk-pop Haircut 100, “Love Plus One” (#37, 1982)
1962 ● Owen Paul / (Owen Paul McGee) → Scottish pop-rock singer, “My Favourite Waste Of Time” (UK #3, 1986), sessions and touring with Mike + The Mechanics
1966 ● Johnny Colt → Original bassist for raunch rock The Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1990), left to form rock trio Brand New Immortals, then modern rock Train, “Drops Of Jupiter” (#5, 2001)
1967 ● Tim McGraw / (Samuel Timothy Smith) → Hugely popular Grammy-winning neo-traditional country star with 22 country #1 hits, including “It’s Your Love” (Country #1, 1997), husband of Faith Hill and son of former baseball pitcher Tug McGraw
1968 ● D’Arcy Wretsky-Brown → Bass guitar for alt/prog rock/metal band Smashing Pumpkins, “1979” (#12, 1996)
1970 ● Bernard Butler → Guitar and vocals for Britpop indie rock Suede, “Trash” (UK #3, 1996), solo, duet with David McAlmont, “Yes” (UK #8, 1995)
1977 ● Dan Regan → Trombone and vocals for “Third Wave” ska/punk revival Reel Big Fish, “Set Out” (Alternative Rock #10, 1997), currently in hip hop side project under the pseudonym Black Casper
1978 ● Nick Traina / (Nicholas John Steel Toth) → Son of author Danielle Steel and lead singer for punk band Link 80, died from a self-administered morphine overdose on 9/20/1997, age 19
1978 ● Chris Kelly → Vocals for teenage rap sensation Kris Kross, “Jump” (#1, 1992), partner Chris Smith and he were 12 and 13 when they recorded the song, died from a suspected drug overdose on 5/1/2013, age 35

May 02
1924 ● Theodore Bikel → Austrian-American actor and respected folk singer/songwriter, appeared in numerous West End London and Broadway shows, feature films and TV shows, co-founded the Newport Folk Festival and issued multiple albums of mostly Jewish folk songs, current president of the Associated Actors and Artistes of America and former president of the Actor’s Equity
1924 ● Lynn Evans / (Lynn Evans Maud) → Amateur barbershop harmony singer recruited to all-girl pop vocal The Chordettes in 1953, sang lead on their mega-hits “Mr. Sandman (#1, 1954) and “Lollipop” (#2, R&B #3, 1958) plus six other Top 20 songs, after the group dissolved in 1964 earned a master’s degree and taught special education for 25 years in the Long Island (NY) public schools, retired in 1989 and toured with a reformed Chordettes in the 90s, died following a stoke on 2/6/2020, age 95.
1929 ● Link Wray / (Frederick Lincoln Wray) → Rock and rockabilly guitarist and bandleader, “fuzz” and power chord guitar pioneer, “Rumble” (#16, 1958), Rolling Stone magazine’s 67th greatest guitarist of all time, died of heart failure on 11/5/2005, age 76
1933 ● Bunk Gardner / (John Gardner) → Reeds and woodwinds for Frank Zappa-led satirical rock group The Mothers Of Invention, “Brown Shoes Don’t Make It” (1967), backing band for Zappa‘s solo albums, reformed as Grandmothers in 80s
1936 ● Engelbert Humperdinck / (Arnold George Dorsey) → The “King of Romance”, MOR crooner and balladeer with 13 Adult Contemporary Top 10 hits, “After The Lovin'” (#8, 1977)
1944 ● Bob Henrit → Journeyman Brit drummer for art/hard rock Argent, “Hold Your Head Up” (#5, 1972), joined The Kinks in 1984, “Do It Again” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1984), session work for Dave Davies, Leo Sayer and others
1945 ● Bianca Jagger / (Bianca Perez-Morena De Macias Jagger) → Wife of Mick Jagger, social activist, actress, fashion icon
1945 ● Goldy McJohn / (John Raymond Goadsby) → Keyboards for Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968)
1945 ● Judge Dread / (Alexander Minto Hughes) → Blue-eyed ska and reggae singer with six UK Top 15 singles, including “Big Six” (UK #1, 1972) and a record 11 songs banned from the BBC, collapsed and died from a heart attack while leaving the stage following a performance in Canterbury, England on 3/13/1998, age 52
1945 ● Randy Cain → Vocals for “Philadelphia Sound” smooth R&B/soul The Delfonics, “La-La (Means I Love You)” (#4, 1968), formed pop-soul Blue Magic, “Sideshow” (#8, R&B #1, 1974), died at home from undisclosed causes on 4/9/2009, age 63
1946 ● Lesley Gore / (Lesley Sue Goldstein) → Girl Group-era solo pop singer/songwriter who had four Top 10 hits of teenage romance by her 18th birthday, “It’s My Party” (#1, 1963), “Judy’s Turn To Cry” (#5, 1963), “She’s A Fool” (#5, 1963) and the feminist anthem “You Don’t Own Me” (#2, 1964), continued to record and write songs into the 00s, hosted the 80s PBS television series In The Life promoting LGBT issues, died from lung cancer on 2/16/2015, age 68.
1948 ● Larry Gatlin / (Larry Wayne Gatlin) → Country-pop solo star in the 70s with 10 Country Top 40 hits, then frontman for Grammy-winning sibling trio The Gatlin Brothers, “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer To You)” (Country #1, 1983) and 16 other Country Top 10 hits in the 80s and 90s, toured and performed as a trio into the 00s, continues to tour as a solo acoustic act in the 10s
1950 ● Lou Gramm / (Louis Grammatico) → Vocals for arena rock Foreigner, “Double Vision” (#2, 1978), then formed Christian-rock Lou Gramm Band
1951 ● John Glascock → Bassist in prog rock quintet Carmen, left in 1975 to join Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973), died from complications of a genetic heart valve condition on 11/17/1979, age 28
1954 ● Prescott Niles → Bassist for pop-rock The Knack, “My Sharona” (#1, 1979)
1955 ● Jo Callis / (John William Callis) → Synthesizer, keyboards and guitar for punk rock Rezillos, wrote “Top Of The Pops” (UK #17, 1978), then joined New Wave synth-pop Human League, “Don’t You Want Me” (#1, 1981)
1961 ● Dr. Robert / (Bruce Robert Howard) → Lead singer, guitar, piano and songwriter for New Wave pop-rock Blow Monkeys, “Digging Your Scene” (#14, 1986)
1962 ● Alain Johannes / (Alain Johannes Moschulski) → Multi-instrumentalist musician and founding member of 90s alt rock Eleven (“Rainbows End,” 1991), later producer for hard rock Queens Of The Stone Age, Chris Cornell, Arctic Monkeys and others
1967 ● David McAlmont → Brit pop-rock singer/songwriter, duet with Bernard Butler, “Yes” (UK #8, 1995)
1969 ● Ben Leach → Keyboards and synthesizer for Brit synth-pop The Farm, “Groovy Train” (#41, Dance/Club #4, 1991), then joined electro-dance club Happy Mondays, “Stinkin Thinkin” (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1984 ● Rose Falcon → Singer and songwriter who wrote songs recorded by Faith Hill, country-rock harmony group Lady Antebellum (“Need You Now,” #2, Country #1, 2009) and others, her songs have been used in films, TV show and advertising commercials
1985 ● Lily Allen → Brit pop-rock singer and songwriter, “Smile” (#49, UK #1, 2006)

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This Week’s Birthdays (October 13 – 19)

Happy Birthday this week to:

October 13
1937 ● Bruce “Cousin Brucie” Morrow / (Bruce Meyerowitz) → Beloved 60s and 70s pop-rock Top 40 radio DJ (WABC-am New York), then media businessman and currently Sirius XM satellite radio host
1940 ● Chris Farlowe / (John Henry Deighton) → Rock, blues and blue-eyed soul singer, covered the Jagger/Richards song, “Out of Time” (UK #1, 1966), session work for Colosseum, Atomic Rooster, Jimmy Page and others
1941 ● Paul Simon → Highly acclaimed and ten-time Grammy-winning folk-pop-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, one half the 60 folk-pop duo Simon & Garfunkel, “Bridge Over Trouble Water” (#1, 1970), solo, “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover” (#1, 1975) and 12 other Top 40 hits plus the 1986 Grammy Album of the Year, Graceland (#3, 1987)
1944 ● Robert Lamm → Founding member, vocals, keyboards and songwriter for horn-pop-rock Chicago, wrote “25 Or 6 To 4” (#4, 1970) and “Saturday In The Park” (#3, 1972), solo with seven albums plus a 2000 collaboration album with Gerry Beckley (America) and Carl Wilson (The Beach Boys)
1947 ● Sammy Hagar → Hard rock guitarist and lead singer with early heavy metal band Montrose, “Bad Motor Scooter” (1973), solo, “Your Love Is Driving Me Crazy” (#13, 1983), replaced David Lee Roth in Van Halen, “When It’s Love” (#5, 1988), resumed solo career in 1995
1948 ● John Ford Coley / (John Edward Colley) → Guitar and vocals in folk-pop duo England Dan & John Ford Coley, “I’d Really Love To See You Tonight” (#2, 1976)
1948 ● Peter David Spencer → Drums and vocals for pop-rock Smokie, “Living Next Door To Alice” (#25, 1977)
1950 ● Simon Nicol → Guitarist for renowned Brit folk-rock Fairport Convention, “Si Tu Dos Partir” (UK #21, 1969)
1959 ● Gerry Darby → Founding member and drummer for Brit jazz-pop-rock Carmel, “Bad Day” (UK #15, 1983)
1959 ● Marie Osmond → Youngest sibling of family-oriented light pop-rock The Osmonds, ten US Top 40 singles including “One Bad Apple” (#1, 1971), country-pop solo career, “Paper Roses” (#5, Country #1, 1973) and seven other Country Top 40 hits, TV host
1962 ● Rob Marche → Guitarist for dance-pop-rock Jo Boxers, “Boxer Beat” (UK #3, 1983)
1968 ● Carlos Marin → Baritone for pre-fab Euro-pop vocal quartet Il Divo, “Unbreak My Heart” (Adult Contemporary #33, 2005)
1970 ● Paul Potts → Welsh crossover opera singer and winner of the first series of ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent, debut album One Chance (#21, UK #1, 2007)
1977 ● Justin Peroff / (Justin Papadimitriou) → Canadian drummer for jazz/pop/rock Broken Social Scene, “1 2 3 4” (UK #4, 2007), TV and film actor
1980 ● Ashanti / (Ashanti Shequoiya Douglas) → R&B/contemporary urban singer, songwriter, dancer and actress, “Foolish” (#1, 2002)
1981 ● Kele / (Kelechukwu Rowland Okereke) → Lead singer and rhythm guitarist for indie pop-punk revival Bloc Party, “Helicopter” (Dance #5, 2006), solo

October 14
1926 ● Bill Justis / (William Everett Justis, Jr.) → Record company music director, arranger and film score composer (Smokey And The Bandit, 1977), co-wrote and played saxophone on his one hit wonder pioneer instrumental rock n’ roll song “Raunchy” (#2, 1957), died of cancer on 7/15/1982, age 55
1930 ● Robert Parker → New Orleans R&B/soul and rock ‘n’ roll singer and saxophonist, sessions for Fats Domino, Ernie K-Doe and others, then one hit wonder solo career, “Barefootin'” (#7, 1966)
1940 ● Cliff Richard / (Harry Rodger Webb) → The “Brit Elvis” and biggest selling artist of all time in the UK, early rock n’ roll star, “Move It” (UK #2, 1958) credited as the first rock ‘n’ roll song from outside the U.S., then migrated to MOR pop and light rock, “Devil Woman” (#6, UK #9, 1976) plus over 100 UK Top 40 hits, TV actor
1942 ● Billy Harrison → Backing vocals and guitar for the early lineups of Irish garage-rock, proto-punk Them, “Gloria” (#71, 1966)
1945 ● Bomber Hodgkinson / (Colin Hodgkinson) → Jazz-rock bassist, co-founded 70s bass-centric fusion trio Back Door, session work for Jan Hammer, Alexis Korner, the Spencer Davis Group, Whitesnake and others
1946 ● Dan McCafferty → Founding member and lead singer of Scottish hard rock Nazareth, “Love Hurts” (#8, 1976), has appeared on all Nazareth albums plus two solo LPs
1946 ● Justin Hayward / (David Justin Hayward) → Guitar and vocals for prog rock then pop-rock The Moody Blues, wrote “Nights In White Satin” (#2, 1967) and “Your Wildest Dreams” (#9, 1986), still touring in 2011
1947 ● Norman Harris → R&B/Philly soul guitarist, founding member of MFSB, producer for multiple R&B/soul groups including The Delfonics and The Trammps, co-wrote hits for Gloria Gaynor, Wilson Pickett, the Spinners and others as part of the Baker-Harris-Young songwriting team, died of a heart attack on 3/20/1987, age 39
1948 ● Ivory Tilmon → Vocals in R&B/soul brother act The Detroit Emeralds, “Feel The Need In Me” (R&B #22, 1973)
1948 ● Marcia Barrett → West Indian vocalist in R&B/disco Euro-dance Boney M, “Rivers Of Babylon” (#30, UK #1, 1978)
1952 ● Chris Amoo → Vocals for Brit Northern soul/funk quartet The Real Thing, “You To Me Are Everything” (#64, UK #1, 1976)
1958 ● Thomas Dolby / (Thomas Morgan Robertson) → Multi-instrumentalist New Wave synth-pop singer and composer, “She Blinded Me With Science” (#5, 1982), also member of Camera Club and the Lene Lovich band, producer for Joni Mitchell, Prefab Sprout and others, developed the RMF downloadable file format and Beatnik mobile phone software
1959 ● Antimo Rivetti → Manager for Brit teen-pop blue-eyed soul Curiosity Killed The Cat, “Down To Earth” (UK #3, 1986)
1959 ● A.J. Pero / (Anthony Jude Pero) → Drummer for heavy metal Twisted Sister, “We’re Not Gonna Take It” (#21, 1983), continued to perform with the band until his death from a heart attack on 3/20/2015, age 55
1965 ● Karyn White → Contemporary R&B/pop singer, “Superwoman” (#8, 1988), now an interior design and real estate consultant
1974 ● Natalie Maines / (Natalie Maines Pasdar) → Singer, songwriter and guitarist for country-rock girl group Dixie Chicks, “Not Ready To Make Nice” (#4, 2006) plus Grammy Album of the Year Taking The Long Way (2006)
1975 ● Shaznay Lewis → Singer in Brit dance-pop-rock all-girl quartet All Saints, “Never Ever” (#4, 1998)
1978 ● Usher Raymond → The reigning “King of R&B,” Grammy-winning pop-soul singer, songwriter, dancer and actor, “Nice & Slow” (#1, 1998) plus 13 other Top 10 singles and three #1 albums

October 15
1925 ● Mickey “Guitar” Baker / (McHouston Baker) → Highly influential but little known 50s session guitarist at Atlantic Records, bridged R&B and rock ‘n’ roll as a backing guitarist, plus solo and duo Mickey & Sylvia, “Love Is Strange” (#11, 1957)
1935 ● Barry McGuire → One hit wonder folk-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Eve Of Destruction” (#1, 1965), switched to Christian/gospel in the 70s
1938 ● Marv Johnson → Early Motown R&B/soul vocalist, “You Got What It Takes” (#10, 1959) and three other Top 40 hits between 1959 and 1961, moved into sales and promotion with Motown and sister labels, died from a stroke on 5/16/1993, age 54
1938 ● Fela Kuti / (Olufela Ransome-Kuti) → Nigerian multi-instrumentalist singer, arranger, political activist and pioneer World music artist as inventor of the Afro-beat, used his influence and music to criticize his homeland’s authoritarian regimes while introducing a blend of James Brown funk with jazz and traditional African rhythms, sold millions of records in Africa and elsewhere despite near-constant government repression, died from complications of AIDS on 8/3/1997, age 58
1939 ● Tommy Gough / (Talmadge Gough) → Vocals for biracial R&B/doo wop The Crests, “Sixteen Candles” (#2, 1959), quit the group about 1970 and faded into obscurity, died of throat cancer on 8/24/2014. age 74
1942 ● Chris Andrews / (Christopher Frederick Andrews) → Pop-rock singer and songwriter, “Yesterday Man” (UK #3, 1965), wrote six UK Top 10 hits for Adam Faith and Sandie Shaw in the mid-60s,
1942 ● Don Stevenson → Drummer, singer and songwriter for 60s San Francisco folk-roots-psych rock Moby Grape, “Omaha” (#88, 1967), continues to appear with the band, issued his first solo album (King Of The Fools) in 2010
1946 ● Richard Carpenter → Keyboards and vocals with sister Karen in AM pop/adult contemporary duo The Carpenters, “Close To You” (#1, 1970)
1948 ● Chris De Burgh / (Christopher John Davison) → Light pop-rock/adult contemporary singer, songwriter and keyboardist, “Lady in Red” (#3, 1986)
1948 ● Yo Yo Jaramillo / (Joe Jaramillo) → Founding member and vocals for pioneering “East Side Sound” of L.A. Mexican-American one hit wonder brown-eyed-soul/garage rock quartet Cannibal And The Headhunters (“Land Of A Thousand Dances,” #30, 1965), died from liver disease on 5/24/2000, age 51
1948 ● Lance Dickerson → Drummer for country-rock/boogie/swing bar band Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen, “Hot Rod Lincoln” (#9, 1972), worked with various incarnations of the band through the 90s, died on 11/10/2003, age 55
1951 ● Frank DiMino → Lead vocals for flamboyant, mostly-image glam-rock Angel, a Kiss-wannabe band with eight studio and live albums and a cult following but little commercial success, left in 1981, reunited with several original members in the 90s and currently plays in classic rock cover bands in Las Vegas
1953 ● Tito Jackson / (Toriano Jackson) → Vocals and lead guitarist in R&B/pop-soul sibling act The Jackson 5, “I Want You Back” (#1, 1970)
1955 ● Vanessa Briscoe Hay → Co-founding member and lead vocalist for Athens, GA-based seminal post-punk college rock Pylon, “Gyrate” (Dance/Club #41, 1981), later with other local groups
1956 ● Chris Lacklison → Keyboards for glam pop-rock Kenny, “The Bump” (UK #3, 1975)
1962 ● David Stead → Drummer in alt pop-rock The Beautiful South, “A Little Time” (UK #1, 1990)
1962 ● Mark Reznicek → Drummer in post-grunge alt rock Toadies, “Possum Kingdom” (Modern Rock #4, 1995)
1963 ● Jay Bennett → Guitarist, songwriter and producer for alt country-rock Wilco, “Outtasite (Outta Mind)” (Mainstream Rock #22, 1997), solo, sessions and collaborations, died from an accidental overdose of painkillers on 5/24/2009, age 45
1966 ● Douglas Vipond → Drummer in Scottish indie pop-rock Deacon Blue, “Real Gone Kid” (UK #8, 1988)
1970 ● Ginuwine / (Elgin Baylor Lumpkin) → Hip-hop soul crooner, “Differences” (#4, 2001) and five other Top 40 singles
1984 ● Shayne Ward → Contemporary pop singer and winner of the 2005 UK TV series The X Factor, “That’s My Goal” (UK #1, 2005)

October 16
1903 ● Big Joe Williams / (Joe Williams) → Delta blues guitarist and songwriter best known for being the first to adapt and record “Baby, Please Don’t Go” (1935), which has since become a blues standard with recordings by The Orioles (R&B #8, 1952), Themm (UK #10, 1964), Paul Revere & The Raiders (1966), Amboy Dukes (#106, 1968), AC/DC (AUS #10, 1973) and Aerosmith (2004), among others, died on 12/17/1982, age 79
1922 ● Max Bygraves / (Walter William Bygraves) → Brit comedian, actor, variety show performer and pop singer with 12 UK Top 10 hits in the 50s, including “Meet Me On The Corner” (UK #2, 1955), but couldn’t withstand the onslaught of Beatlemania in the 60s and turned to hosting TV programs though the 80s, died from complications of Alzheimer’s disease on 8/31/2012, age 89
1923 ● Bert Kaempfert / (Berthold Kämpfert) → German easy listening/adult pop orchestra leader and composer, “Wonderful By Night” (#1, 1961), wrote songs covered by Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and many others, produced the first Beatles recording session with Tony Sheridan,, died after a stroke on 6/21/1980, age 56
1937 ● Emile Ford / (Emile Sweetman) → West Indian-born singer, musician and frontman for pre-Beatles pop-rock The Checkmates, “What Do You Want To Make Those Eyes At Me For?” (UK #1 ,1959), short solo career and then record producer
1938 ● Nico / (Christa Päffgen) → German singer, model and vocals for proto-punk The Velvet Underground, “Femme Fatale” (1967), then proto-goth/folk-rock solo career, suffered a brain hemorrhage in a bicycling accident and died on 7/18/1988, age 49
1942 ● Dave Lovelady → Drummer and singer for Merseybeat pop-rock The Fourmost, “A Little Loving” (UK #6, 1964)
1943 ● C.F. Turner / (Charles Frederick Turner) → Bass and vocals for Canadian pop-rockers Bachman-Turner Overdrive, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” (#1, 1974), the only member to play on every album the band released over 25 years
1945 ● Roger Hawkins → Drummer, session musician and founding member of the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section (also known as The Swampers), the renowned studio musician ensemble that recorded hundreds of songs and albums at Muscle Shoals Studio in Alabama, including hits by The Staple Singers, Paul Simon, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Wilson Pickett and countless others
1947 ● Bob Weir / (Robert Hall Oparber) → Founding member, rhythm guitarist, singer and songwriter for rock’s longest, strangest trip Grateful Dead, “Sugar Magnolia” (#91, 1973) and “Touch Of Grey” (#9, 1987), solo, bandleader for Kingfish, Ratdog and Bobby & The Midnites, member of Grateful Dead spinoff The Other Ones
1952 ● Boogie Mosson / (Cordell Mosson) → Bassist for the Parliament-Funkadelic (“P-Funk”) collective of soul/funk bands and their flamboyant costumes, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#31, 1978), toured with P-Funk variations through 2011, died from liver failure on 4/18/2013, age 60
1953 ● Tony Carey → Keyboardist in early lineup of hard rock Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow, founder and frontman for space rock Planet P Project, “Why Me?” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1983) and solo, “A Fine, Fine Day” (#22, 1984), producer for Jennifer Rush, Joe Cocker, Mark Knopfler and others
1955 ● Mimi Lennon / (Miriam Theresa Lennon) → Joined her older sisters in 1999 to replace a retiring Peggy in semi-religious pop vocal quartet The Lennon Sisters (“Tonight You Belong To Me,” #15, 1956), continues to record and perform as a trio in the 10s
1956 ● “Chaka B” / (Brinsley Forde) → Child TV actor (Here Come The Double Deckers and Please Sir! in the early 70s) turned founding member, guitarist and vocalist in long-lived roots reggae Aswad (Arabic for “black”), “Don’t Turn Around” (UK #1, 1988), one of the most popular and successful Brit reggae bands, left the band in 1996 but continued to perform with other accts and on BBC television
1959 ● Gary Kemp → Guitar and keyboards for New Romantic pop-rock Spandau Ballet, “True” (#4, 1983) plus 16 other UK top 40 singles
1960 ● Bob Mould → Frontman, guitarist and songwriter for post-punk alt rock trio Hüsker Dü, “Makes No Sense At All” (1985), light rock solo career, “See A Little Light” (Modern Rock #4, 1989), founded and fronted alt rock Sugar, “If I Can’t Change Your Mind” (UK #30, 1992)
1962 ● Flea / (Michael Peter Balzary) → Bass and vocals for funk-rock Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Californication” (Modern Rock #1, 2000)
1965 ● Simon Bartholomew → Founding member, guitar and vocals for acid-jazz/funk The Brand New Heavies, “Sometimes” (UK #11, 1997)
1967 ● Jason Everman → Rock guitarist and vocalist with brief stints in 1989 as second guitarist for premier grunge rock Nirvana, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (#6, 1992) and 1990 as interim bassist in seminal grunge rock group Soundgarden, “Black Hole Sun” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1994) before both groups became superstars, left to join other marginally successful grunge bands, eventually joined the U.S. Army Special Forces and became a decorated Afghan and Iraqi war hero, now a G.I. Bill graduate of Columbia University with a B.A. in Philosophy
1969 ● Wendy Wilson → Vocals for pop-rock all-girl offspring trio Wilson Phillips, “Release Me” (#1, 1990), daughter of The Beach Boys Brian Wilson
1977 ● John Mayer → Light pop-rock singer/songwriter and guitarist, won 2003 Grammy Award for “Your Body Is A Wonderland” (#18, Adult Top 40 #3, 2002)

October 17
1909 ● Cozy Cole / (William Randolph Cole) → Journeyman but highly regarded jazz-pop and swing drummer from 1930 through the 70s, his instrumental “Topsy, Pt. 2” (#3, R&B #1, 1958) was the first drum solo recording to chart, died from cancer on 1/29/1981, age 71
1923 ● Barney Kessel → Highly accomplished, in-demand jazz-pop-rock guitarist and sessionman over a 50 year career, first as a member of several Big Bands, later as a touring guitarist with several big-name ensembles, and as a member of the acclaimed Wrecking Crew group of first call L.A. studio musicians, played behind The Beach Boyss, The Monkees, Simon & Garfunkel, John Denver, Natalie Cole and many others, sidelined by a stroke in 1992 and died from an inoperable brain tumor on 5/6/2004, age 80
1933 ● Soeur Sourie / (Jeanne-Paule Marie Deckers) → Belgian-born one hit wonder folk-pop singer and guitarist, as the “Singing Nun” recorded “Dominique” (#1, 1963), died after ingesting an overdose of sleeping pills in a suicide pact with a girlfriend on 3/29/1985, age 51
1934 ● Rico Rodriguez / (Emmanuel Rodriguez) → Jamaican trombonist with ska revival The Specials, “Ghost Town” (UK #1, 1981), solo and sessions
1935 ● Michael Eavis → English dairy farmer who founded the Glastonbury Festival in 1970 and on whose land the music festival has occurred annually for over 40 years
1941 ● Alan Howard → Bassist for British Invasion pop-rock The Tremeloes, “Silence Is Golden” (#11, UK #1, 1967)
1941 ● Jim Seals → Guitar, violin, vocals and songwriting in 70s light pop-rock duo Seals & Crofts, “Summer Breeze” (#6, 1972) and “Diamond Girl” (#6, 1973)
1942 ● Gary Puckett → Lead vocals and frontman for pop-rock Gary Puckett & The Union Gap, “Young Girl” (#2, 1968), followed with a modest solo career and now tours with a new lineup of the band
1944 ● Carole Cookie Cole / (Carole “Cookie” Cole) → Music producer, stage, film and TV actress, adopted daughter of jazz-pop singer Nat King Cole and adopted sister of soul-pop diva Natalie Cole, starred in multiple motion pictures including The Silencers (1967) and The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three (1974), co-starred on TV sitcoms Sanford And Son and Grady, as CEO of King Cole Productions oversaw the use and licensing of her father’s catalogue, name and likeness, died of lung cancer on 5/19/2009, age 64
1946 ● James Tucker → First rhythm guitarist for pop-rock The Turtles, “Happy Together” (#1, 1967), left in 1967 following a European tour
1946 ● Mike Hossack → Drummer for California soul-pop-rock The Doobie Brothers during their heyday in the early 70s (“Listen To The Music,” #11, 1972), played in other rock bands and co-owned a recording studio, rejoined the Doobies in 1985 and performed with the band until prior to his death from cancer on 3/12/2012, age 65
1947 ● Michael McKean → Actor and comedian, portrayed David St. Hubbins in the “mock-rock” parody band Spinal Tap from the movie This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
1949 ● Bill Hudson / (William Hudson) → Vocals for sibling trio The Hudson Brothers, “So You Are A Star” (#21, 1974), ex-spouse of Goldie Hawn, father of actress Kate Hudson
1958 ● Alan Jackson → Honky tonk/new traditionalist country star singer and songwriter with 17 Country Top 10 albums and 24 Country #1 hits, including the Grammy-winning “Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning)” (#38, Country #1, 2001)
1962 ● Anne Rogers → Bassist for Brit indie-folk-pop Popinjays, “Vote Elvis” (Modern Rock #17, 1988)
1967 ● René Dif → Vocals for Danish dance-pop Aqua, “Barbie Girl” (#7, 1997), which drew a lawsuit from Mattel for its sexual content
1968 ● Ziggy Marley / (David Nesta Marley) → Five-time Grammy-winning guitarist, singer and songwriter, solo and as frontman for reggae-pop sibling group The Melody Makers, “Tomorrow People” (#39, 1988), son of reggae legend Bob Marley
1969 ● Wyclef Jean → Haitian musician, member of R&B/jazz-rap The Fugees, “Killing Me Softly” (#1, 1996), solo, “Gone Till November” (#7, 1998), record producer, announced plans to run in the 2010 Haitian presidential election but withdrew when his bid for candidacy was rejected over residency requirements
1971 ● Christopher Kirkpatrick → Founding member and counter tenor vocals for teen dance-pop harmony boy band *NSYNC, “It’s Gonna Be Me” (#1, 2000)
1971 ● Derrick Plourde → Drummer for mainstream pop-punk The Ataris, “The Boys Of Summer” (#20, Modern Rock #2, 2003) and other bands, died from a suicide gunshot on 3/30/2005, age 38
1972 ● Eminem / (Marshall Bruce Mathers III) → Grammy-winning blue-eyed rapper, worldwide #1 album The Marshall Mathers LP (2000) and worldwide hit “Lose Yourself” (#1, 2002), producer for Jay-Z, Nas, 50 Cent, DMX, 2Pac and others, award-winning film actor

October 18
1926 ● Chuck Berry / (Charles Edward Berry) → Early breakthrough rock ‘n’ roll pioneer, enduring and immortal guitarist, singer and songwriter, “Johnny B. Goode” (#8, 1958) and 13 other Top 40 hits, major influence on The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and countless other rock and pop artists, found unresponsive in his home and pronounced dead on 3/18/2017, age 90
1938 ● Ronnie Bright → R&B/doo wop bass singer with The Valentines, The Cadillacs and the Deep River Boys, plus session work including a duo with Johnny Cymbal, “Mr. Bass Man” (#16, 1963), now with The Coasters
1940 ● Cynthia Weil → Grammy-winning Brill Building songwriter, often as collaborator with her husband, Barry Mann, wrote or co-wrote dozens of hits for varied artists, including “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin'” (#1, 1965) for The Righteous Brothers and “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place” (#13, UK #2, 1965) for The Animals
1943 ● Russ Giguere → Vocals, percussion and guitar in light pop-rock vocal group The Association, “Along Comes Mary” (#7, 1966), left briefly for solo career but returned and still tours with the band in 2011
1947 ● Laura Nyro / (Laura Nigro) → Light folk-jazz-pop singer, guitarist and composer with several acclaimed solo albums, wrote “Eli’s Coming” for Three Dog Night (#10, 1969), “Wedding Bell Blues” for The 5th Dimension (#1, 1969), “And When I Die” for Blood, Sweat & Tears (#2, 1969) and “Stoney End” for Barbra Streisand (#6, 1971), died of ovarian cancer on 4/8/1997, age 49
1949 ● Joe Egan → Co-founder, keyboards and vocals in Scottish folk-pop-rock Stealers Wheel, co-wrote “Stuck In The Middle With You” (#6, 1973), left the music industry in the early 80s for a career in book publishing
1949 ● Gary Richrath → Guitarist and principal songwriter for arena rock REO Speedwagon, wrote “Take It On The Run” (#5, 1981) and others songs, left in 1989 for an unsuccessful solo career, rejoined the band for a single benefit concert in 2013, died from unspecified causes on 9/13/2015, age 65
1956 ● Dick Crippen → Bassist in oddball Brit punk-rock Tenpole Tudor, “Who Killed Bambi” (UK #6, 1979)
1958 ● Denise Dufort → Founding member, vocals and drums for early all-girl heavy metal group Painted Lady, which became Girlschool, “Hit And Run” (UK #32, 1981)
1961 ● Wynton Marsalis → Virtuoso jazz trumpeter, composer and bandleader, one of the “Young Lions” and a major figure in jazz since the 1980s, his album Standard Time, Vol. 1 (1987) is one of five Grammy-winning albums
1966 ● Tim Cross → Bassist in post-grunge alt rock Sponge, “Molly (16 Candles Down The Drain)” (Modern Rock #3, 1995)
1971 ● Mark Morriss → Lead singer for indie rock The Bluetones, “Slight Return” (UK #2, 1996), solo
1974 ● Peter Svensson → Guitarist for Swedish pop-rock The Cardigans, “Lovefool” (#1, 1996)
1975 ● Baby Bash / (Ronald Ray Bryant) → Mexican-American smooth rapper, “Suga Suga” (#7, 2003)
1977 ● Simon Rix → Bassist for indie rock Kaiser Chiefs, “Ruby” (UK #1, 2007)
1982 ● Ne-Yo / (Shaffer Smith) → Urban contemporary R&B/pop singer, “So Sick” (#1, 2005) and “Miss Independent” (#7, 2008), the 2009 Grammy Award for Best R&B song
1984 ● Esperanza Spalding / (Esperanza Emily Spalding) → Child-prodigy violinist, 15-year-old concertmaster for the Chamber Music Society of Oregon, Berklee College of Music graduate and four-time Grammy-wining jazz bassist and singer with a growing catalogue of solo albums, including Radio Music Society (#10, Jazz #1, 2012) and collaborations with others
1987 ● Zachary Efron → Actor and singer, “Troy Bolton” in High School Musical movies (most watched cable TV movies ever)

October 19
1910 ● John C. Mills, Jr. → Bass vocals and guitar in six-decade jazz and pop quartet The Mills Brothers (“Cab Driver,” #23, Adult #3, 1968), best known for approximating instrument sounds with vocals, first as a novelty act in the vaudeville era of the 20s and later as the music behind their singing, died while on tour in England on 1/23/1936, age 25
1911 ● George Cates → Big band and easy listening orchestrator, composer and record producer with the instrumental medley hit “Moonglow And Theme From Picnic” (#31, 1956) but known best as the musical director for The Lawrence Welk Show and his successful 50s and 60s TV program, composed Welk‘s theme song “Champagne Fanfare” and led the on air orchestra through 1982, died from heart failure on 5/10/2002, age 90
1934 ● Dave Guard / (Donald David Guard) → Founding member, guitar, banjo, vocals, songwriter and arranger for influential folk-pop The Kingston Trio, “Tom Dooley” (#1, 1958) plus nine other Top 40 hits, left the band in acrimony in 1961, issued solo albums, authored books and participated in occasional reunions until his death from lymphoma on 3/22/1991, age 56
1937 ● Jerry Jaye / (Gerald Hatley) → Singer and guitarist with the rockabilly-tinged Top 30 hit “My Girl Josephine” (#29, 1967) and the country “Honky Tonk Women Love Redneck Men” (Country #32, 1976), continued to record and perform with little impact into the 00s
1940 ● Larry Chance / (Larry Figueiredo) → Lead vocals and frontman for white R&B/doo wop The Earls, “Remember Then” (#24, 1963), still performing on the oldies circuit
1944 ● George McCrae → R&B/soul-disco singer and songwriter, “Rock Your Baby” (#1, 1974), Rolling Stone magazine’s #1 song for 1974
1944 ● Peter Tosh / (Winston Hubert McIntosh) → Guitar and vocals in legendary reggae group The Wailers, left in 1974 for solo career, “(You Gotta Walk) Don’t Look Back” (1978), murdered by intruders in his home on 9/11/1987, age 42
1945 ● Jeannie C. Riley / (Jeanne Carolyn Stephenson) → Grammy-winning country-pop singer, “Harper Valley PTA” (#1, 1968) and six Country Top 10 hits, switched to gospel music in the late 70s
1945 ● Divine / (Harris Glenn Milstead) → Drag queen, cult-movie star (Pink Flamingos, 1972, and others) and campy disco/dance singer, “Native Love (Step By Step)” (Dance #21, 1982), died from obesity-related cardiomegaly on 3/7/1988, age 42
1946 ● Keith Reid → Chief lyricist with prog/psych rock Procol Harum, “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” (#5, 1967), theater management executive
1947 ● Wilbert Hart → Vocals in pioneering “Philadelphia Sound” smooth R&B/soul The Delfonics, “La-La (Means I Love You)” (#4, 1968), still tours and records with various lineups
1948 ● Patrick Simmons → Guitar and vocals for California soul-pop-rock The Doobie Brothers, “Listen To The Music” (#11, 1972), only consistent member during the band’s 40-plus year history
1955 ● Nino DeFranco → Vocals for teen bubblegum-pop sibling act The DeFranco Family, “Heartbeat-It’s A Lovebeat” (#3, 1973)
1957 ● Karl Wallinger → Keyboardist for pop-rock The Waterboys, then guitar and vocals for World Party, “Way Down Now” (Modern Rock #1, 1990), wrote “She’s The One” for Robbie Williams (UK #1, 1999)
1960 ● Jennifer-Yvette Holliday → R&B/pop singer and Tony-winning actress in the stage version of Dreamgirls (1981), won Grammy Award for “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” (#22, R&B #1, 1982)
1960 ● Woody Woodgate / (Daniel Woodgate) → Drummer for punk/ska revival Madness, “Our House” (#7, 1982) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles
1965 ● Todd Park Mohr → Namesake, frontman, lead singer, guitarist and chief lyricist for 90s pop/rock Big Head Todd & The Monsters, “Bittersweet” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1993)
1966 ● Sinitta Renay Malone → Anglo-American R&B/dance-pop singer, “Toy Boy” (Dance/Club #19, UK #4, 2005), sometime stage actress
1972 ● Pras Michel / (Prakazrel Michel) → Rapper with R&B/jazz-rap The Fugees, “Killing Me Softly” (#1, 1996), solo, “Ghetto Supastar (That Is What You Are)” featuring Ol’ Dirty Bastard and Mýa (#15, 1998)
1976 ● Pete Loeffler → Lead guitarist and lead singer in alt metal sibling trio Chevelle, “The Clincher” (Mainstream Rock #3, 2005)

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This Week’s Birthdays (September 22 – 28)

Happy Birthday this week to:

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

September 23
1926 ● John Coltrane → Highly influential jazz saxophonist, composer and pioneer of the free jazz movement of jazz without limits, played in others’ bands before forming his own quartet in the 60s and creating innovative and expressive albums such as Giant Steps (1960), My Favorite Things (1961) and A Love Supreme (1965), won a posthumous Grammy Award in 1981 for the 1962 album recording Bye Bye Blackbird, died from liver disease on 1/17/1967, age 40
1930 ● Ray Charles / (Ray Charles Robinson) → Soul music pioneer who fused R&B, gospel and blues in the 50s and country, R&B and pop in the 60s, won twelve Grammy Awards and scored over thirty Top 40 hits, including “Hit The Road Jack” (#1, 1961), his posthumous album Genius Loves Company (#1, 2004) became Grammy “Album of the Year” for 2004 voted #10 on Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Greatest Artists of All Time,” died from lung cancer on 6/10/2004, age 73
1935 ● Les McCann / (Leslie Coleman McCann) → Jazz pianist and singer known for his cool piano jazz in the early 60s, easily crossed over to R&B, soul, funk and jazz-rock fusion in the late 60s and 70s with “Compared To What” (#85, 1970) and several multi-chart albums, including Swiss Movement (#29, R&B #2, Jazz #1, 1970), suffered a stroke in the 90s but continued to record into the 00s
1939 ● Roy Buchanan → The “best unknown guitarist in the world,” influential but commercially underappreciated blues-rock guitarist, session musician and solo artist with two gold records among over 15 studio and live albums, pioneered the “Telecaster sound” on the iconic electric guitar, one of Guitar Player magazine’s “50 Greatest Tones of All-Time,” hanged himself in a Virginia jail cell after being arrested for public drunkenness on 8/14/1988, age 48
1940 ● Tim Rose → Influential folk-rock singer and songwriter who found greater commercial success in the UK than in his native US, best known for his version of the post-apocalyptic folk-rock standard “Morning Dew” (1967), died from a heart attack during intestinal surgery on 9/24/2002, age 62
1942 ● Jeremy Steig → Acclaimed jazz flutist, artist, graphic designer and early force in jazz-rock fusion as frontman for Jeremy & The Satyrs and on dozens of solo albums featuring Jan Hammer, Eddie Gomez and others,, his “Howlin’ For Judy” (1970) was sampled by the Beastie Boys on “Sure Shot” (Dance #48, 1994), died from cancer on 4/13/2016, age 73
1943 ● Julio Iglesias → Grammy-winning Spanish smooth romantic crooner, “Begin The Beguine” (#1, 1981), one of the top 10 best selling artists in history
1943 ● Steve Boone → Bassist for folk-pop-rock The Lovin’ Spoonful, “Summer In The City” (#1, 1965), record producer and studio owner
1943 ● Wallace Scott → With twin brother Walter, leaders of R&B/soul-dance quintet The Whispers, “And The Beat Goes On” (#19, R&B #1, 1980)
1943 ● Walter Scott → With twin brother Wallace, leaders of R&B/soul-dance quintet The Whispers, “And The Beat Goes On” (#19, R&B #1, 1980)
1943 ● John Banks → Drummer for Britbeat pop-rock The Merseybeats, “Mr. Moonlight'” (UK #5, 1964) and seven other UK Top 40 hits but no chart presence in the US, died on 4/20/1988
1945 ● Paul Petersen → TV actor (mouseketeer on The Mickey Mouse Club and Jeff Stone on The Donna Reed Show) and moonlighting pop singer, “My Dad” (#6, 1962)
1945 ● Ron Bushy → Drummer for psych rock Iron Butterfly, “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” (#30, 1970)
1946 ● Duster Bennett / (Anthony Bennett) → British blues-rock harmonica player and one man band, “Jumping At Shadows” (1968), session musician and early 70s member of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, died in a car crash on 3/26/1976, age 29
1947 ● Jerry Corbetta → Co-founder, guitar and vocals for one hit wonder pop-rock Sugarloaf, “Green-Eyed Lady” (#3, 1970)
1947 ● Dan Grolnick → Jazz and pop pianist, member of jazz-rock fusion bands Steps Ahead and Dreams in the 70s and 80s, as a session musician played on numerous albums by top 80s artists, including The Brecker Brothers, Steely Dan and Linda Ronstadt, continued to record and perform with his own bands and as a sessionman until his death from non-Hodgkin Lymphoma on 6/1/1996, age 48
1948 ● Dangerous Dan Toler / (Dan Toler) → Rhythm and lead guitarist as a member of his own bands and with Dickie Betts & Great Southern in the 70s, the Gregg Allman Band and The Allman Brothers Band in the 80s, joined supergroup The Renegades of Southern Rock in the 90s and collaborated with John Townsend in several projects in the 90s and 00s, died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) on 2/25/2013, age 64
1949 ● Bruce Springsteen → The Boss, Grammy-winning heartland rock singer, songwriter, guitarist and bandleader for The E Street Band, “Glory Days” (#5, 1985), #23 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time
1970 ● Ani DeFranco → Vocals for teen bubblegum-pop sibling act The DeFranco Family, “Heartbeat-It’s A Lovebeat” (#3, 1973)
1972 ● Jermaine Dupri / (Jermaine Dupri Mauldin) → Producer, songwriter and rapper, “The Party Continues” (#29, Rap #6, 1998), discovered and managed teen hip hop duo Kris Kross, founder of So So Def Recordings, producer for Xscape, Da Brat, Mariah Carey and others
1979 ● Erik-Michael Estrada → Vocals for pre-fab teen idol boy-band O-Town, “All Or Nothing” (#3, 2001)
1985 ● Diana Ortiz → Vocals for R&B/dance-pop all-girl quartet Dream, “He Loves U Not” (#2, 2000)

September 24
1893 ● “Blind Lemon” Jefferson / (Henry Jefferson) → The “Father of Texas Blues,” pioneering blues singer, guitarist and composer, “See That My Grave Is Kept Clean” (1927) has been covered by Bob Dylan, the Grateful Dead, B. B. King, Peter, Paul & Mary and others, died from a heart attack on 12/15/1929
1909 ● Carl Sigman → Songwriter best known for penning the English lyrics and title to “What Now My Love” (Sonny & Cher, #4, UK #13, 1966), for adding the lyrics to the theme music to the movie Love Story (1970) to create the hit “Where Do I Begin?’ (Andy Williams, #9, AC #1, UK #4, 1971) and for co-writing the swing jazz and pop standard “Pennsylvania 6-5000” (Glenn Miller Orchestra, #4, 1940), died at home from natural causes on 9/26/2000, age 91
1919 ● Jack Costanzo / (Jack James Costanzo) → Chicago-born Italian-American drummer, composer and bandleader known as “Mr. Bongo” for his decades-long contributions to Afro-Cuban jazz and Latin jazz-pop, played and toured with Stan Kenton, Nat King Cole, Perez Prado and other Big Band and jazz-pop bands in the 40 and 50s, formed his own band in the 50s and recorded multiple albums through to 2005, appeared in the Elvis Presley movie Harum Scarum (1965), died from an aortic aneurysm on 8/18/2018, age 98
1931 ● Anthony Newley → Stage, screen and TV actor, singer, pop songwriter, “What Kind Of Fool Am I?” (Grammy Award Song of the Year 1963), co-wrote the lyrics to “Goldfinger” from the James Bond movie, co-wrote and starred in the stage musical Stop The World – I Want To Get Off, died from renal cancer on 4/14/1999, age 67
1933 ● Mel Taylor → Longtime drummer for rock ‘n roll instrumental combo The Ventures, “Walk – Don’t Run” (#2, 1960), died of lung cancer on 8/11/1996, age 62
1935 ● Shep Sheppard / (James Sheppard) → Founder and frontman for early 60s R&B doo wop, one hit wonder trio Shep And The Limelites (“Daddy’s Home,” #2, 1961), died from gunshot wounds during a possible carjacking on the Long Island Expressway on 1/24/1970, age 34
1938 ● Steve Douglas / (Steve Kreisman) → Reed instrument session musician for Phil Spector, member of the acclaimed Wrecking Crew group of L.A. studio musicians and best known for his saxophone on albums by Aretha Franklin, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, The Ramones and others, produced Mink DeVille‘s Le Chat Bleu (1980) album, died from a heart attack on 4/19/1993, age 54
1940 ● Bibbs Allbut / (Barbara Allbut) → Singer with pop girl group The Angels, “My Boyfriend’s Back” (#1, 1963), the first all-white girl group with a #1 hit
1941 ● Linda McCartney / (Linda Louise Eastman) → Photographer, animal rights activist, vegetarian food company founder, keyboardist for pop-rock Wings and solo albums with her husband Paul McCartney, died from breast cancer on 4/17/1998, age 56
1942 ● Gerry Marsden → Frontman and vocals for British Invasion pop-rock Gerry & The Pacemakers, “How Do You Do It?” (#9, 1964)
1942 ● Jiggs Allbut / (Phyllis Allbut) → Singer with pop girl group The Angels, “My Boyfriend’s Back” (#1, 1963), the first all-white girl group with a #1 hit
1944 ● Rosa Lee Hawkins → Vocals for 60s R&B/pop girl-group The Dixie Cups, “Chapel Of Love” (#1, 1964)
1946 ● Carson Osten → Co-founder and bassist in psych/garage rock band The Nazz, “Hello It’s Me” (#66, 1970), left to become a writer, artist, product and character design manager for The Walt Disney Company
1946 ● Jerry Donahue → Guitarist for Brit folk-rock quintet Fotheringay, then renowned folk-rock Fairport Convention, “Si Tu Dos Partir” (UK #21, 1969), sessions and tours with Robert Plant, Elton John, George Harrison, Warren Zevon, The Beach Boys and others, solo albums
1946 ● Kjell Asperud → Drummer for Anglo-Norwegian one hit wonder rock band Titanic, instrumental “Sultana” (UK #5, 1971)
1962 ● Cedric Dent → Vocals in a cappella gospel Take 6, “I L-O-V-E U” (R&B #19, 1990)
1969 ● Clown Crahan / (Shawn Crahan) → Co-founder, DJ, turntablist and backing vocals for Grammy-winning alt metal/rap-metal Slipknot, “Duality” (Mainstream Rock #5, 2004)
1971 ● Marty Cintron → Vocals in dance-pop trio No Mercy, “Where Do You Go” (#5, 1996)
1971 ● Peter Salisbury → Drummer for neo-psych-pop The Verve, “Bittersweet Symphony” (#12, 1998)

September 25
1925 ● Russ Solomon / (Russell Malcolm Solomon) → High school drop-out and founder of Tower Records, which grew from a neighborhood storefront in Sacramento, CA to a $1 billion-plus, 200 store, industry-dominant global empire selling music, books and videos with a club-like buying “experience,” the chain succumbed to Internet piracy, discounters and a crushing debt load and liquidated in 2006, died while reportedly drinking whisky and watching the Academy Awards program on TV on 3/4/2018, age 92
1930 ● Shel Silverstein / (Sheldon Allan Silverstein) → Novelty songwriter, comedian, film and TV actor, cartoonist and prolific author of children’s books, penned several hits for others, including “A Boy Named Sue” for Johnny Cash (#2, 1969) and “The Cover Of The Rolling Stone” for Dr. Hook (#6, 1972), plus songs covered by outlaw country star Tompall Glaser, former Go-Go Belinda Carlisle, roots rock My Morning Jacket and others, died of a heart attack on 5/10/1999, age 68
1933 ● Ian Tyson / (Ian Dawson Tyson) → Canadian singer and guitarist in influential male/female folk harmony vocal duo Ian & Sylvia, solo with several acclaimed albums, now a rancher in Alberta
1933 ● Erik Darling → Folk-pop multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter and influential figure on the Greenwich Village folk revival scene of the late 50s and early 60s, member of folk-pop The Tarriers (“The Banana Boat Song,” #4, R&B #14, 1957), The Weavers and The Rooftop Singers (“Walk Right In,” #1, AC #1, Country #23, R&B #4, 1963), continued to record and perform in various folk-related projects until his death from complications due to lymphoma on 8/3/2008, age 74
1939 ● Sweet Joe / (Jesse Russell) → Vocals in a cappella The Persuasions, “Chain Gang” (1971), backing vocals for Joni Mitchell, Stevie Wonder, Don McLean and others
1942 ● Dee Dee Warwick / (Delia Mae Warwick) → Sister of Dionne Warwick, cousin of Whitney Houston and two-time Grammy nominee R&B/soul singer with a dozen minor pop hits and two R&B Top 10 from 1963 to 1975, including “I Want to Be with You” (#41, R&B #9, 1966) and “She Didn’t Know (She Kept On Talking)” (#70, R&B #9, 1970), performed sporadically with her sister after the 80s, died following a long illness on 10/18/2008, age 66
1943 ● Jules Alexander / (Gary Alexander) → Guitar and vocals for light pop-rock vocal group The Association, “Along Comes Mary” (#7, 1966)
1943 ● John Locke / (John Tilden Locke) → Keyboards for jazz-rock Spirit, “I Got A Line On You” (#25, 1969), left to join hard rock Nazareth, “Love Hurts” (#8, 1976), died from cancer on 8/4/2006, age 62
1945 ● Onnie McIntyre → Rhythm guitar and vocals for Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974)
1946 ● The Bear / (Jerry Penrod) → Early bassist for psych rock Iron Butterfly, “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” (#30, 1970), left to join overpublicized, underperforming pre fab hard rock supergroup Rhinoceros, “Apricot Brandy” (#46, 1969)
1946 ● Bryan MacLean → Guitar, vocals and songwriting for folk/psych-rock Love, “7 And 7 Is” (#33, 1966), wrote “Alone Again Or” (#99, 1967), solo, died of a heart attack on 12/25/1998, age 62
1947 ● John Fiddler → Vocals and multiple instruments for Brit folk-rock duo Medicine Head, “One And One Is One” (UK #3, 1973)
1947 ● Cecil Womack → R&B/soul and gospel singer, songwriter and record producer, scored a R&B Top Ten hit with his brothers as soul/pop The Valentinos, “Lookin’ For A Love” (#72, R&B #8, 1962) on Sam Cooke‘s SAR Records, later recorded duets with second wife Linda Womack (daughter of Sam Cooke) as Womack & Womack (“Baby I’m Scared Of You,” R&B #25, 1984) and co-wrote songs for others, including “Love T.K.O.” for Teddy Pendergrass (#44, R&B #2, 1980) and “I Just Want To Satisfy” for The O’Jays (#101, R&B #15, 1982), died from unknown causes on 2/1/2013, age 65
1955 ● Steve Severin → Bassist for punk then dance-rock Siouxsie & The Banshees, “Kiss Them For Me”, (#23, 1991), solo
1955 ● Zucchero / (Adelmo Fornaciari) → Italian boogie-blues-rocker, “Donne” (1985) and “Senza Una Donna (Without A Woman)” with Paul Young (Italy #1, UK #4, 1991), has performed collaborations with Eric Clapton, Brian Wilson, Bono and others
1968 ● The Fresh Prince / (William Carroll Smith) → Rapper in PG-rated pop-rap duo DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, “Summertime” (#4, Rap #1, 1991), then Grammy-winning solo career, “Getting’ Jiggy Wit It” (#1, 1998), TV and film star
1974 ● Wamma Edwards / (Richie Edwards) → Guitar technician turned full-time bassist for glam-rock The Darkness, “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” (#35, UK #2, 2003) and successor band Stone Gods
1975 ● Dec Donnelly / (Declan Donnelly) → Actor, singer and one half the pop music duo PJ & Duncan (later renamed Ant & Dec), “Lets Get Ready To Rhumble” (UK #9, 1994), TV host
1980 ● T.I. / (Clifford Joseph Harris, Jr.) → Grammy-winning MC, rapper, songwriter, “Live Your Life” (#1, 2008), co-CEO of Grand Hustle Records, producer, film actor, convicted felon

September 26
1898 ● George Gershwin / (Jacob Gershvin) → One of the greatest songwriters of the early 20th century, Tin Pan Alley stage, film and opera composer and lyricist, best known for his jazz-influenced classical composition “Rhapsody In Blue” (1924) and the opera Porgy And Bess (1934), died from a brain tumor on 7/11/1937, age 38
1918 ● The Cool Ghoul / (John Zacherle) → TV and radio host for shows broadcasting horror movies, voice actor and one hit wonder pop-rock novelty singer, “Dinner With Drac” (Top Ten, 1958)
1925 ● Marty Robbins / (Martin David Robertson) → Country music legend and crossover phenomenon, “El Paso” (#1, Country #1, 1960) plus 11 other Top 40 pop singles and 39 other Country Top 10 hits, died following a heart attack on 12/8/1982, age 57
1926 ● Julie London / (Nancy Peck) → Film and TV actress and sultry jazz-pop vocalist, “Cry Me A River” (#9, 1956), released 32 albums of pop and jazz covers but is better known as an actress and co-star of TV drama Emergency! (1972-77), suffered a stroke in the late 90s, lived in declining health for several years before dying on 10/18/2000, age 74
1931 ● George Chambers → Bassist for psychedelic soul-rock sibling group The Chambers Brothers, “Time Has Come Today” (#11, 1968)
1940 ● Red Jones / (Creadel Jones) → Original member and bass vocals in Chicago R&B/smooth soul The Chi-Lites (“Have You Seen Her?,” #, R&B #1, 1972), left the group in 1982 and died on 8/25/1994, age 53
1941 ● Joseph Bauer → Drummer in light country-rock The Youngbloods, “Get Together” (#5, 1969), died from a heart attack in September 1982, age 40
1945 ● Bryan Ferry → Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, first as frontman with art rock Roxy Music, “Love Is The Drug” (#30, 1975), then solo, “Kiss And Tell” (#31, 1988) and 13 UK Top 20 albums through 2010
1947 ● Lynn Anderson / (Lynn Rene Anderson) → Country-pop vocalist best known for the Grammy-winning “(I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden” (#3, Country #1, 1970), plus 17 other Country Top 10 hits among over 50 overall Top 40 singles, died from cardiac arrest on 7/30/2015, age 67
1948 ● Olivia Newton-John → Grammy-winning country-pop then soft rock singer, “You’re The One That I Want” with John Travolta (#1, 1978) and “Physical” (#1, 1981), film actress
1951 ● Stuart Tosh / (Stuart MacIntosh) → Drummer for Scottish soft pop-rock Pilot, “Magic” (#5, 1974), also recorded and toured with 10cc, The Alan Parsons Project, and Camel
1954 ● César Rosas → Singer, songwriter, guitarist and de facto frontman for Grammy-winning Chicano/roots rock Los Lobos, “La Bamba” (#1, 1987) and Los Super Seven, sessions and side projects
1954 ● Craig Chaquico → Teenage lead guitarist in the last incarnations of Jefferson Airplane, stayed on with pop-rock Jefferson Starship, “Miracles (#3, 1975), co-wrote “Jane” (#14, 1980), now performs and records New Age world music
1955 ● Carlene Carter / (Rebecca Carlene Smith) → Country and roots-rock singer and songwriter, “Every Little Thing” (Country #3, 1993), daughter of Johnny Cash‘s wife June Carter Cash
1958 ● Darby Crash / (Jan Paul Beahm) → Lead singer for early L.A. punk rock The Germs, “Lexicon Devil” (1979), died from a suicidal heroin overdose on 12/7/1980, age 22
1961 ● Cindy Herron / (Cynthia Ann Herron) → Vocals in Grammy-winning female club-dance group En Vogue, “Hold On” (#2, 1990)
1962 ● Tracey Thorn → Lead singer and guitarist in Brit pop-dance-club duo Everything But The Girl, “Missing” (#2, 1995), solo
1964 ● Nikki French / (Nicola French) → Brit pop and adult contemporary one hit wonder singer and dancer, “Total Eclipse Of The Heart” (#2, UK #5, 1995)
1967 ● Shannon Hoon → Frontman and lead vocals for roots-psych-alt rock Blind Melon, “No Rain” (Modern Rock #1, 1993), died from a heroin overdose on 10/21/1995, age 28
1972 ● Paul Draper → Lead singer, songwriter and rhythm guitarist for post-Brit-pop hard rock Mansun, “Wide Open Space” (Modern Rock #25, 1997)
1972 ● Shawn Stockman → Singer and songwriter in hugely successful R&B/urban soul a cappella quartet Boyz II Men, “End Of The Road” (#1, 1992)
1981 ● Christina Milian / (Christina Flores) → Cuban-American R&B dance-pop singer and songwriter, “Dip It Low” (#5, 2004)

September 27
1898 ● Vincent Millie Youmans → Broadway and film composer who worked with every major lyricist of his day and composed the music to dozens of enduring hit songs, including “Tea For Two” (1925) and “Carioca” (1933), retired after contracting tuberculosis in 1934 and died from the disease on 4/5/1946, age 48
1922 ● Raymond Edwards → Bass vocals in R&B/doo wop vocal quartet The Silhouettes, “Get A Job” (#1, 1958), continued to tour with the group until his death on 3/4/1997, age 74
1936 ● Don Cornelius / (Donald Cortez Cornelius) → R&B/soul music promoter and producer, created and hosted the highly influential dance/music TV show Soul Train from 1971 to 1993, the first and most successful TV show featuring African-American musicians, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on 2/1/2012, age 75
1937 ● Buddy Emmons / (Buddy Gene Emmons) → Influential, virtuoso peddle steel guitarist, popularized the instrument for jazz, swing, folk and country-rock genres, recorded with a diverse number of top artists, including Linda Ronstadt, The Everly Brothers, Willie Nelson, Ray Charles, Jerry Lee Lewis and Bob Dylan, performed on NPR’s “Prairie Home Companion” broadcasts, fronted the Redneck Jazz Explosion in the 70s and issued several solo albums, died on 7/21/2015, age 77
1941 ● Don Nix → Songwriter, musician, arranger and author, saxophonist in Stax Records first house band The Mar-Keys (later Booker T. & The MG’s), wrote blues-rock standard “Going Down”, producer for Leon Russell, George Harrison, John Mayall, Eric Clapton and others
1942 ● Alvin Stardust / (Bernard William Jewry) → Assumed the name of deceased frontman Shane Fenton (born John Theakstone) and led early 60s Britpop Shane Fenton And The Fentones, “Cindy’s Birthday” (UK #19, 1962), changed his name and reemerged as glam rock Alvin Stardust in the early 70s, “Jealous Mind” (UK #1, 1974) and 10 other UK Top 40 hits, continued to perform until just before his death from prostate cancer on 10/23/2014
1943 ● Randy Bachman → Founding member, songwriter and lead guitarist for Canadian hard rock Guess Who, “American Woman” (#1, 1970), then formed Bachman-Turner Overdrive with his brothers Robbie and Tim, “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet” (#1, 1974), then Ironhorse, “Sweet Lui-Louise” (#36, 1979) and Union, solo plus CBC radio host
1947 ● Barbara Dickson → Scottish folk-pop singer, “Answer Me” (UK Top 10, 1976) and a duet with Elaine Paige, “I Know Him So Well” (UK #1, 1985), TV and stage actress
1947 ● Meat Loaf / (Marvin Lee “Michael” Aday) → Hard-edged iconic pop-rock singer and occasional actor, “Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad” (#11, 1978) and Grammy-winning “I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That)” (#1, 1993), released the phenomenally successful Bat Out Of Hell album trilogy
1953 ● Robbie Shakespeare / (Robert Shakespeare) → Reggae bassist and, with Sly Dunbar, one half of the studio duo Riddim Twins, produced albums for Peter Tosh, Jimmy Cliff, Bunny Wailer and others, recorded with Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Grace Jones and others
1953 ● Greg Ham → Saxophone, flute and keyboards for Scottish-Australian Men At Work, “Down Under” (#1, UK #1, 1983), their Grammy-winning debut album, Business As Usual, was simultaneously the #1 US and UK album in January 1983, gaining them the distinction of being the only Aussie band to hold all four top spots at once, found dead in his Melbourne home on 4/19/2012, age 58
1958 ● Shaun Cassidy → TV actor, 70s teen idol singer, “Hey Deanie” (#7, 1978), half brother of TV actor and Partridge Family character David Cassidy
1966 ● Stephan Jenkins → Guitar, vocals and songwriting for post-grunge indie pop Third Eye Blind, “Semi-Charmed Life” (#4, 1997)
1970 ● Mark Calderon → Vocals in a cappella hip hop harmony group Color Me Badd, “I Wanna Sex You Up” (#2, 1991)
1975 ● Bradley Kirk Arnold → Vocals for post-grunge alt rock 3 Doors Down, “Kryptonite” (#3, 2000)
1975 ● Lee Brennan → Vocals and co-founding member of Brit teen-dance-pop boy band 911, covered The Bee Gees‘ “More Than A Woman” (UK #2, 1998) and Bobby Gosh‘s “A Little Bit More” (UK #1, 1999), a US #11 hit for Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show in 1976
1982 ● Lil Wayne / (Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr.) → Self-proclaimed “best rapper alive,” teenaged member of hip hop groups The B.G.’z and Hot Boys, Grammy-winning solo career, “Lollipop” (#1, 2008)
1984 ● Avril Lavigne → Canadian teen-pop singer and “skatepunk” icon , “Complicated” (#2, 2002) and “Girlfriend” (#1, 2007), fashion designer, actress

September 28
1901 ● Ed Sullivan / (Edward Vincent 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, age 73
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, age 86
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, age 85
1935 ● Koko Talor / (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, age 73
1937 ● Guitar Hughes / (Joe 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 after a heart attack on 5/20/2003, age 65
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), toured and performed until shortly before his death from coronary problems on 4/30/2015, age 76
1939 ● Tommy Boyce / (Sidney Thomas 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, struggled with depression for years before committing suicide on 11/23/1994, age 55
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 ● 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
1943 ● Manuel Fernandez → Founding member and electric organ for Spanish rock ‘n roll band Los Bravos, “Black Is Black”(#4, UK #2, 1966), the first US Top 10 hit by a Spanish band, at the peak of the band’s popularity and after his new bride’s death in a car accident, committed suicide on 5/20/1967, age 23
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
1944 ● Tommy Tate → Southern R&B/soul singer with the Imperial Show Band and Stax RecordsThe Nightingales in the 60s, thereafter a modest solo career, his lone hit being “School Of Life” (R&B #22, 1972) but continued to record and perform in cult status through the 00s
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
1947 ● Peter Hope-Evans → Harmonica and Jew’s harp in Brit folk-rock duo Medicine Head, “One And One Is One” (UK #3, 1973)
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 from cancer on 10/30/2009, age 58
1952 ● Andy Ward / (Andrew John 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)
1953 ● Kenie Burke / (Kenneth Burke) → With his four siblings, backing singer in the “First Family of Soul,” Chicago R&B/soul The Five Stairsteps, “O-o-h Child” (#7, R&B #14, 1970), after disbandment in 1977 session work for Dark Horse Records and worked with Billy Preston and George Harrison, issued several solo albums and R&B/disco singles in the 80s, continued to record into the 90s
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
1957 ● Mari Wilson / (Mari Macmillan Ramsay Wilson) → Retro-60s beehive-hairdo R&B-pop-quiet storm singer, “Just What I Always Wanted” (, 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)
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 ● Doggen / (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
1966 ● Ginger Fish / (Kenneth Robert Wilson) → 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
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” (, 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” (, 1988), solo and currently performing in Las Vegas
1968 ● Sean Levert → Vocals for R&B/smooth soul trio LeVert, “Casanova” (#5, R&B #1, 1987), son of O’Jays vocalist Eddie Levert, died from sarcoidosis while in jail on child support charges on 3/30/2008, age 39
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
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.
1981 ● Suzanne Shaw → Singer for pre-fab mockstar dance-pop Hear’Say, “Pure And Simple” (UK #1, 2001), stage actress and TV host
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
1987 ● Joshua Farro → Guitarist for alt rock/pop-punk Paramore, “Misery Business” (#27, 2007)

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This Week’s Birthdays (June 2 – 8)

Happy Birthday this week to:

June 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, age 76
1930 ● Vic Firth / (Everett Joseph Firth) → Principal timpanist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra from 1956 to 2002 and founder (in his garage workshop in the early 60s) and former CEO of the Vic Firth Company, the world’s largest maker of drumsticks and percussion mallets, died at home from natural causes on 7/26/2015, age 85
1932 ● Sammy Turner / (Samuel Black) → Smooth R&B/soul singer known for two remakes of classics, “Lavender-Blue” (#3, 1959) and “Always” (#19, R&B #2, 1959), recorded with Motown starting in the late 60s with limited success
1934 ● Johnny Carter / (John E. 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 from lung cancer on 8/21/2009, age 75
1936 ● Otis Williams → Lead vocals and frontman for R&B/doo-wop The Charms, “Ivory Tower” (#11, R&B #5, 1956), left the industry after being drafted in 1960, returned in the 70s as a country music singer, reformed The Charms in the 90s
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, age 41
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)
1946 ● Ian Hunter / (Ian 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)
1947 ● Steve Brookins → Founding member and original drummer for Southern arena rockers .38 Special, “Hold On Loosely” (Mainstream Rock #3, 1981)
1950 ● Chubby Tavares / (Antone Lee Tavares) → Vocals for five brother R&B/funk-disco Tavares, “Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel” (#15, 1976)
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
1954 ● Michael Steele / (Susan Nancy Thomas) → Bass and vocals for New Wave pop-rock The Bangles, “Manic Monday” (#2, 1986)
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
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)
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 from complications of AIDS and spinal meningitis on 1/25/1995, age 32
1964 ● Kerry King → Rhythm guitar for “Big Four” thrash metal Slayer, “Hate Worldwide” (#2, 2009)
1965 ● Jeremy Cunningham → Bassist for alt folk-Celtic rock The Levellers, “Just The One” (UK #12, 1995)
1968 ● Samantha Sprackling → Vocals for Brit techno-pop Republica, “Drop Dead Gorgeous” (Modern Rock #39, 1997)
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
1974 ● Kelly Jones → Vocalist for Welsh alt rock/trad rock Stereophonics, “Have A Nice Day” (Modern Rock #26, UK #5, 2001)
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
1985 ● Tavion La’Corey Mathis → Singer for Miami-based R&B/hip-hop quartet Pretty Ricky, “Grind With Me” (#7, 2005)

June 03
1906 ● Josephine Baker / (Freda Josephine McDonald) → Legendary chanson-singing dancer and actress of the 20s and 30s, one of the most successful African American entertainers of her time, left the demeaning U.S. vaudeville circuit for the open-minded Parisian cabaret scene, became a French citizen, a star and a voice against prejudice while performing exotic dances in risqué costumes (or none at all), starred in movies alongside Bob Hope, Fanny Brice and others, became an outspoken figure in the American Civil Rights movement of the 60s, died from a cerebral hemorrhage on 4/12/1975, age 68
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, age 73
1926 ● Allen Ginsburg / (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 from liver cancer on 4/5/1997, age 70
1927 ● Boots Randolph / (Homer Randolph III) → Tenor saxophonist and major contributor to the “Nashville Sound” of pop flavoring within country music in the 50s, 60s and 70s, as a solo artist scored 14 Billboard Top 200 albums and the Top 40 single “Yakety Sax” (#35, 1963), died following a brain hemorrhage a month after the release of his final studio album on 7/3/2007, age 80
1940 ● Charles Fizer → Tenor vocals for 50s/60s doo wop quartet The Olympics (“Western Movies,” #8, R&B #7, 1958), the band’s string of hits largely dried up after he was shot and killed by police during the Watts Riots in Los Angeles on 8/14/1965, age 25
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, age 57
1943 ● Mike Dennis → Second tenor for doo wop a cappella harmony turned early garage-rock/dance craze The Dovells, “Bristol Stomp” (#2, 1961)
1946 ● Eddie Holman → Philly soul, pop and gospel tenor vocalist best known for “Hey There Lonely Girl” (#2, R&B #4, 1970), largely disappeared from the music business in the 80s, became an ordained Baptist minister and occasionally performed into the 00s
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, age 47
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, age 27
1947 ● Mickey Finn / (Michael Hearne) → Percussion for proto-glam-rock T. Rex, “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” (#10, 1971), died from suspected liver and kidney failure on 1/11/2003, age 55
1950 ● 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 after suffering a heart attack on 6/28/2009, age 56
1954 ● Dan Hill → Canadian folk-pop singer/songwriter, “Sometimes When We Touch” (#3, 1978)
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
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)

June 04
1937 ● Freddy Fender / (Baldemar Garza Huerta) → Grammy-winning Hispanic country, rockabilly and rock ‘n’ roll crossover singer and songwriter, his biggest hit “Before The Next Teardrop Falls” (#1, Country #1, 1975) came after a near career-ending stint in prison for marijuana possession, in the 90s joined supergroups The Texas Tornados and Los Super Seven, died from lung cancer on 10/14/2006, age 69
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, age 64
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, age 26
1954 ● Raphael Ravenscroft → Welsh session saxophonist, composer and author, recorded the sax break on Gerry Rafferty‘s “Baker Street” (#2, 1975), receiving only an hours’ union wages and no royalties, later worked with Pink Floyd, ABBA, Robert Plant, America and many other artists, and composed film scores and advertising jingles until his death from a heart attack on 10/19/2014, age 60
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 ● Gordon Russell → Lead guitar for the mid-80s lineup of Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, “Milk And Alcohol” (UK #9, 1979)
1958 ● Selwyn Brown → Vocals and keyboards for roots reggae Steel Pulse, “Prodigal Son” (UK #35, 1978)
1961 ● El Debarge / (Eldra Patrick 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)
1987 ● Mollie King / (Mollie Elizabeth King) → Singer, songwriter and member of electro-pop girl-group The Saturdays, “Missing You” (UK #3, 2010), signed a solo contract with Island Records in 2015
1990 ● Zachary Farro → Drummer for alt rock/pop-punk Paramore, “Misery Business” (#27, 2007)

June 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, age 48
1942 ● Gary DeCarlo / (Gary Richard DeCarlo) → Lead singer on the one hit wonder but enduring sports anthem “Na Na Hey Hey (Kiss Him Goodbye)” (#1, 1969), a song attributed to the non-existent pop-rock band Steam, died from metastatic lung cancer on /28/2017, age 75
1943 ● Michael Davis → Punk rock and heavy metal bass guitarist best known as an original member of Detroit proto-punk rockers MC5 (“Kick Out The Jams,” 1969), spent time in the 70s in a federal corrections facility on drug charges, paroled and wrote and performed with art noise Destroy All Monsters and other bands, became a visual and design artist, died of liver failure on 2/17/2012, age 68
1945 ● Don Reid → Lead vocals in country-gospel-pop crossover harmonic quartet The Statler Brothers (“Flowers On The Wall,” #4, Country #2, 1965), he and his older brother, Harold were the only brothers in the group and no one was named Statler, following the band’s retirement in 2002 began writing fiction novels and autobiographies
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
1946 ● John Du Cann → Progressive rock guitarist, played with several hard rock bands and founded psych-rock Andromeda in the 60s, joined Atomic Rooster (“The Devil’s Answer,” UK #4, 1971) in 1970, then tried a solo career (“Don’t Be A Dummy,” UK #33, 1979) in between stints for Thin Lizzy and a reformed Atomic Rooster, died from a heart attack on 9/21/2011, age 65
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, age 36
1948 ● Frank Eslersmith → Keyboards for Aussie light pop-rock Air Supply, “The One That You Love” (#1, 1981), died on 3/1/1991, age 42
1950 ● Ronnie Dyson / (Ronald Dyson) → Lead actor/singer in the Broadway musical Hair, “Good Morning Starshine” (#3, 1969) and then Philly soul balladeer, “(If You Let Me Make Love To You Then) Why Can’t I Touch You?” (#8, R&B #9, 1970), died from heart failure on 11/10/1990, age 40
1954 ● Nicko McBrain / (Michael Henry McBrain) → Drummer for Brit heavy metal Iron Maiden, “Flight Of Icarus” (Mainstream Rock #8, 1983)
1954 ● Pete Erskine / (Peter Erskine) → Session percussionist and journeyman jazz and jazz-rock fusion session drummer, worked with Stan Kenton, Maynard Ferguson, Weather Report and the Brecker Brothers, among others
1956 ● Kenny G. / (Kenneth Bruce 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 ● Maggie Dunne / (Margaret 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 ● Marky Mark / (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 ● Dominic Chad → Lead guitar and backing vocals for post-Brit-pop hard rock Mansun, “Wide Open Space” (Modern Rock #25, 1997)
1974 ● P-Nut Wills / (Aaron “P-Nut” Wills) → Bassist for alt-rock reggae-rap-metal 311, “All Mixed Up” (Modern Rock #4, 1996), solo, producer
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)
1990 ● Richard Sohl → Keyboardist, songwriter and arranger known for his long-time association with punk-rock Patti Smith Group (“Because The Night,” #13, 1978), also session work with Iggy Pop, Nina Hagen and others, composed the score to the punk-rock docudrama Final Reward (1978)

June 06
1936 ● Levi Stubbs / (Levi 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) / (Gary Levone Anderson) → R&B/soul and rock ‘n’ roll singer and songwriter, “Quarter To Three” (#1, 1961) and “This Little Girl” (#11, 1981), age 72
1942 ● Howard Kane / (Howard Kirschenbaum) → Vocals for clean cut pop-rock Jay & The Americans, “Cara Mia” (#4, 1965) and nine other Top 30 hits
1943 ● Joe Stampley → Louisiana blues-rock singer, songwriter and bandleader turned country star, fronted swamp rock The Uniques in the late 60s and sang lead on two minor hits, “Not Too Long Ago” (#66, 1965) and “All These Things” (#97, 1966), converted to honky tonk country with a recut of “All These Things” (Country #1, 1976) and 28 other Country Top 10 hits between 1971 and 1989
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
1951 ● Dwight Twilley → Power pop bandleader, singer and songwriter best known for his Top 20 hit “I’m On Fire” (#16, 1975) and an otherwise unremarkable career leading the Dwight Tilley Band plus solo efforts
1955 ● Mikel 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, age 44
1959 ● Bobby Bluebell / (Robert 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 ● Tom Araya / (Tomas Enrique 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 ● Munky Shaffer / (James 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
1978 ● Jeremy Gara → Drummer for Grammy-winning Canadian alt/indie rock Arcade Fire, “Keep The Car Running” (Alt #32, 2007)
1984 ● Chris Tomson → Drummer for New York indie Afro-pop/rock Vampire Weekend, “Cousins” (Alt Rock #18, 2009)
1987 ● Kyle Falconer → Lead guitarist, songwriter and lead vocalist for Scottish retro-rock/ska punk The View, “Same Jeans” (UK #3, 2007)

June 07
1917 ● Dean Martin / (Dino Paul Crocetti) → Film, TV and stage actor, singer, “Memories Are Made Of This” (#1, 1956) and 15 other Top 40 singles, cultural icon and member of the Rat Pack, died of lung cancer on 12/25/1995, age 78
1938 ● Michael Goldstein → Rock music publicist and artist PR agent who represented and promoted multiple top acts in the late 60s and early 70s, including Jimi Hendrix, Sly & The Family Stone, Jefferson Airplane and Grateful Dead (and claimed to have 10 different acts as clients at the 1969 Woodstock festival), left PR to found The Soho Weekly News in New York City in 1973 as a competitor to The Village Voice, folded the paper in 1982 and tried numerous entrepreneurial ventures over the years until his death from pancreatic cancer on 5/19/2018, age 79
1940 ● Tom Jones / (Tom Woodward) → Grammy-winning, Welsh heartthrob vocalist “She’s A Lady” (#2, 1971) plus 15 other Top 40 singles and, in the 80s, nine Country Top 40 hits
1942 ● Gary Burger → With four other American G.I.’s stationed in Germany, lead guitar for 60s avant-garde garage rock/proto-punk The Monks (1966 LP Black Monk Time), the band broke up in 1968 but reformed in 1999 when their album became a cult classic, died of pancreatic cancer on 3/17/2014, age 71
1944 ● Clarence White / (Clarence LeBlanc) → Acadian guitarist for progressive bluegrass sibling group Kentucky Colonels, then seminal country-pop-rock The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man” (#1, 1965), session work for Jackson Browne, Randy Newman and others, killed by a drunken driver on 7/15/1973, age 29
1948 ● Dave Torbert → Bass guitarist, vocalist and songwriter for Bay Area country-rock New Riders Of The Purple Sage, co-wrote “Contract” and many other NRPS songs, co-founded country-rock Kingfish with Matthew Kelly and Bob Weirr (Grateful Dead), died of a heart attack on 12/7/1982, age 34
1953 ● Johnny Clegg → The “White Zulu”, guitarist, songwriter, co-founder and frontman for multiracial Afro-Euro-dance pop World music band Juluka and Zulu-dance-pop Savuka
1955 ● Joey Scarbury → One hit wonder Canadian pop singer, “Theme From The Greatest American Hero (Believe It Or Not)” (#2, 1981)
1957 ● Paddy McAloon / (Patrick Joseph McAloon) → Guitar and vocals for Brit indie pop Prefab Sprout, “If You Don’t Love Me” (Dance/Club #3, 1992)
1958 ● Prince / (Prince Rogers Nelson) → Mega-talented, multi-instrumentalist songwriter, singer, actor, producer and pop-rock/soul-funk bandleader, “When Doves Cry” (#1, 1984) and 30 other Top 40 singles, seven Grammy Awards, an Academy Ward-winning movie, Purple Rain (1984) and multiple hits for others, including “Manic Monday” by The Bangles (#2, 1986), collapsed at home and died from a prescription painkiller overdose on 4/21/2016, age 57
1964 ● Ecstasy / (John Fletcher) → Vocals for rap/R&B “new jack swing” Whodini, “Five Minutes Of Funk” (1984) from the acclaimed album Escape
1966 ● Eric Kretz → Drummer for alt hard rock Stone Temple Pilots, “Interstate Love Song” (#18, 1994)
1967 ● Dave Navarro / (David Michael Navarro) → Founding member and lead guitarist for alt rock/post-punk Jane’s Addiction, “Been Caught Stealing” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1990), in mid-90s joined funk-rock Red Hot Chili Peppers, released two solo albums with one Top 10 hit, “Rexall” (Mainstream Rock #9, 2001), in 2012 began as celebrity judge on the tattoo competition reality TV show Ink Master
1974 ● T-Low / (Terry Brown) → Vocals in contemporary R&B/smooth soul brother duo Next, “Too Close” (#1, 1998)
1985 ● Chaz Simo / (Charles Robert Simpson) → Guitar and vocals for Brit pop-punk boyband Busted, “You Said No” (UK #1, 2003)
1990 ● Iggy Azalea / (Amethyst Amelia Kelly) → Australian rapper, songwriter and fashion model, “Fancy” (#1, 2014) and three other US Top 40 hits

June 08
1918 ● Robert Preston / (Robert Meservy) → Tony-winning Broadway stage and screen (mostly Westerns) actor who landed the role of a lifetime as the lead in The Music Man on stage in 1957 and film in 1962, died of lung cancer on 3/21/87, age 68
1936 ● James Darren / (James William Ercolani) → Early pop-rock teen idol singer, “Goodbye Cruel World” (#3, 1961), film actor (Gidget, 1959, Venus In Furs, 1969 and others), TV actor in The Time Tunnel (1966-67) and T. J. Hooker (1982-85)
1940 ● Nancy Sinatra → Sultry, sexy MOR pop singer, “These Boots Were Made for Walking” (#1, 1966), duet with father Frank “Somethin’ Stupid” (#1, 1967), the only father/daughter #1 hit ever
1940 ● Sherman Garnes → Bass vocals for R&B/doo wop Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers, “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” (1956), died during open heart surgery on 2/26/1977, age 36
1941 ● Fuzzy Haskins / (Clarence Haskins) → Guitar and vocals for R&B/soul-funk (“P-Funk”) Parliament-Funkadelic, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#31, 1978)
1942 ● Chuck Negron → Co-founder and one of three lead vocalists for top-tier pop-rock k Three Dog Night, “Joy To The World” (#1, 1971) and ten other Top 10 hits between 1969 and 1974
1944 ● Boz Scaggs / (William Royce Scaggs) → Guitarist, songwriter and vocalist, first with early Steve Miller Band, then a long solo career starting with “Lowdown” (#3, 1976) and “Lido Shuffle” (#11, 1977)
1944 ● Don Grady / (Don Louis Agrati) → TV actor, musician, singer and songwriter starting as a Mouseketeer on The Mickey Mouse Show and then as Robbie Douglas, the teenage heart-throb and oldest of three brothers on the 60s wholesome sitcom My Three Sons (1960-1972), joined short-lived, one hit wonder sunshine pop band The Yellow Balloon (“Yellow Balloon,” #25, 1967) and later wrote TV themes and soundtracks, died of bone cancer on 06/27/2012, age 68
1947 ● Annie Haslam / (Anne Haslam) → Vocalist and songwriter best known for her 45 year tenure as lead singer for Brit folk/prog rock Renaissance (“Northern Lights,” UK #10, 1978), plus 18 solo albums and an annual Christmas concert in Sellersville near Philadelphia, PA
1947 ● Julie Driscoll → Brit pop diva with Brian Auger & The Trinity, “This Wheel’s On Fire” (UK #5, 1968), solo prog rock albums, now jazz-improv vocals
1949 ● Jimmie King → Guitarist and founding member of soul/funk The Bar-Kays, “Soul Finger” (#17, R&B #3, 1967), which also served as Stax Records‘ in-house session group and Otis Reddingg’s backing band, died in the Wisconsin plane crash that killed Redding and four Bar-Kays bandmates on 12/10/1967, age 18
1951 ● Bonnie Tyler / (Gaynor Hopkins) → Welsh-born raspy-voiced pop-rock solo singer, “Total Eclipse of the Heart” (#1, 1983), plus session backing vocals for Cher and others
1953 ● Jeff Rich → Drummer for blues-rock Climax Blues Band and psych-boogie rock Status Quo, “Pictures Of Matchstick Men” (#12, 1968)
1954 ● Greg Ginn → Founder, frontman, lead singer and principal songwriter for 80s nihilistic L.A. hardcore punk-rock Black Flag (“Thirty And Miserable,” 1981), ranked #99 on Rolling Stone magazine’s Top 100 guitarists of all time
1956 ● Steve Walwyn / (Stephen Martin Walwyn) → Lead guitarist since 1989 for Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, “Milk And Alcohol” (UK #9, 1979)
1960 ● Mick Hucknall / (Michael James Hucknall) → Frontman, singer and songwriter for Brit soul-pop Simply Red, “Holding Back The Years” (#1, 1986), solo
1962 ● Nick Rhodes / (Nick Bates) → Keyboards for New Wave pop-rock Duran Duran, “Hungry Like The Wolf” (#3, 1982)
1965 ● Rob Pilatus → Singer and one half of the scandalous, lip-synching dance-pop vocal duo Milli Vanilli, the pair were stripped of their 1989 Grammy Award when in 1990 it was revealed that they never actually sang on their albums or in concert, committed suicide on 4/2/1998, age 32
1966 ● Doris Pearson → Vocals for Brit family R&B/dance-pop quintet 5 Star, “Can’t Wait Another Minute” (#41, Dance/Club #7, 1986) and fifteen Top 40 singles in native England
1967 ● Neil Mitchell → Keyboards for Scottish pop-rock Wet Wet Wet, “Love Is All Around” (#41, UK #1, 1994)
1970 ● Nicci Gilbert / (Nichole Gilbert) → Vocals in urban contemporary R&B girl trio Brownstone, “If You Love Me” (#8, 1994), solo
1971 ● Jef Streatfield → Guitarist for Brit hard/raunch rock The Wildhearts, “Sick Of Drugs” (UK #14, 1995)
1973 ● Gabe Ford / (Gabriel Ford) → Current drummer for Southern-fried blues-boogie rock Little Feat, “Dixie Chicken” (1973) and “Hate To Lose Your Lovin'” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1988) replacing founding drummer Richie Hayward, who left in 2009 with liver cancer
1977 ● Kanye West → Hip hop producer for Jay-Z and others, then solo rap star, “Gold Digger” (#1, 2005), five-time Grammy winner in 2007
1979 ● Derek Trucks → Blues-rock and world music guitarist and songwriter, nephew of Allman Brothers drummer Butch Trucks, frontman for Grammy-winning The Derek Trucks Band, member of The Allman Brothers Band since 1999, formed the Tedeschi Trucks Band in 2010 with wife Susan Tedeschi
1981 ● Alex Band → Founder, vocals and leader of post-grunge alt rock The Calling, “Wherever You Will Go” (#5, 2001), solo
1985 ● Jamie Shaw → Vocals in teen pop boy band One True Voice, “Sacred Trust / After You’re Gone” (UK #2, 2002)
1989 ● Richard Fleeshman → English TV actor (Craig Harris on the long-running Coronation Street) and singer-songwriter, “Coming Down” (UK #78, 2007)

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This Week’s Birthdays (April 21 – 27)

Happy Birthday this week to:

April 21
1919 ● Don Cornell → Smooth baritone pre-rock ‘n’ roll pop and easy listening singer with over 30 Top 40 hits between 1942 and 1955, including “Hold My Hand” (#2, UK #1, 1954) , died from emphysema and diabetes on 2/23/2004, age 84
1939 ● Ernie Maresca / (Ernest Peter Maresca) → 60s doo wop and rock ‘n’ roll songwriter whose résumé includes several hits for Dion, including “Runaround Sue” (#1, 1961), and a brief one hit wonder solo career, “Shout Shout (Knock Yourself Out)” (#6, 1962)
1943 ● Mars Bonfire / (Dennis Eugene McCrohan Edmonton) → Guitar and vocals for Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, wrote “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968)
1947 ● Alan Warner → Founding member, guitars and backing vocals for Brit R&B/soul-pop The Foundations, “Baby Now That I’ve Found You” (#11, 1967), later wrote dozens of musical instrument instructions books
1947 ● Iggy Pop / (James Newell Osterberg) → Frontman and vocals for hard rock/proto-punk The Stooges, solo, Lust For Life (1977, Rolling Stone Top 500 Albums #147)
1947 ● John Weider → Guitar and violin for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, “House Of The Rising Sun” (#1, 1964), then bassist for blues/art rock Family, “In My Own Time” (UK #4, 1971), sessions and solo as a jazz-new age guitarist and singer/songwriter
1948 ● Paul Davis → Pop-rock and country-pop singer/songwriter (“I Go Crazy, #7, 1977), guest vocalist with Marie Osmond and Tanya Tucker, wrote several country hits for others, died of a heart attack on 4/22/2008, age 60
1951 ● Nicky Barclay / (Nicole Barclay) → Vocals, keyboards and songwriter in pioneering all-girl rock quartet Fanny (“Butter Boy,” #29, 1975), one of the earliest women-only rock bands and the first to release an album on a major record label (Fanny, Reprise, 1970), left the band in 1974 for an unsuccessful solo career but eventually played on albums by Barbra Streisand and Keith Moon and recorded and performed in the U.K. with former members of prog rock Procol Harum and blues-rock Rory Gallagher‘s band.
1958 ● Mike Barson → Keyboards for Brit punk/ska revival Madness, “Our House” (#7, 1982) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles, continues to record and perform with the band into the 10s
1959 ● Michael Timmins → Guitarist and songwriter for Canadian alt-art-country-blues-rock Cowboy Junkies, “Sweet Jane” (Modern Rock #5, 1989)
1959 ● Robert Smith → Founder, frontman, guitarist, vocals, songwriter and only constant member of gloomy post-punk-pop The Cure, “Love Song” (#2, 1989), plus over 20 other Top 40 singles in his native UK
1960 ● John Maher → Drummer in early and seminal punk-pop Buzzcocks, “Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t’ve)” (UK #12, 1978), now sells and races Volkswagen cars
1963 ● Johnny McElhone / (John Francis McElhone) → Bassist for Scottish teen-aged post-punk alt rock Altered Images, “Happy Birthday” (UK #2, 1981), then joined Scottish blues-rock Texas, “In My Heart” (Alt Rock #14, 1991)
1966 ● Michael Franti → Creator, frontman, chief poet, lead vocals and guitar for politically and socially active hip hop-funk-rock fusion Michael Franti & Spearhead (“Say Hey (I Love You),” #18, R&B #1, 2009)
1978 ● Brandon Steineckert → Drummer in screamo-tinged, post-hardcore punk The Used, “Under Pressure” (#48, 2005), left in 2006 to join punk rock revival Rancid, “Time Bomb” (Modern Rock #8, 1995)

April 22
1922 ● Charles Mingus → Universally-lauded jazz bassist, bandleader and composer, in his last months collaborated with Joni Mitchell on her tribute album Mingus, died from complications of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) on 1/5/1979, age 56
1927 ● Laurel Aitken / (Lorenzo Aitken) → The “Godfather of Ska,” Cuban-Jamaican singer whose 1958 single “Boogie In My Bones” was the first Jamaican popular music record released in the UK, became one of ska music’s leading artists in the 70s and continued to record and perform until his death from a heart attack on 7/17/2005, age 78
1931 ● Joe Cuba (Gilberto Miguel Calderón) / (Gilberto Miguel Calderón) → The “Father of Latin Boogaloo,” Puerto Rican-American conga drummer widely regarded as one of the creators of the Latin soul fusion of R&B and Cuban salsa instrumentation called “boogaloo,” which originated in New York City and became briefly popular in the late 60s, “Bang, Bang” (#63, 1966), died from a bacterial infection on 2/15/2009, age 77
1932 ● Isao Tomita → Analog synthesizer musician, composer and pioneer of space and electronic music, used electronic music sequencers to combine classical pieces with sci-fi themes, won four Grammy Awards for his 1974 album Snowflakes Are Dancing, died from cardiac failure on 5/5/2016, age 84
1936 ● Glen Campbell / (Glen Travis Campbell) → 60s session musician with the Wrecking Crew of top-notch musicians, recorded with The Monkees, Elvis Presley, Bobby Darin, Frank Sinatra, The Velvet Underground, The Mamas & the Papas and others, member of the touring band for The Beach Boys in place of Brian Wilson in 1964-65, then Grammy-winning country-pop guitarist and singer/songwriter with dozens of Country Top 10 and Pop Top 40 hits, including “Rhinestone Cowboy” (#1, 1975), occasional actor and TV host throughout his music career, died after a long and publicized battle with Alzheimer’s disease on 8/8/2017, age 81
1937 ● Jack Nitzsche / (Bernard Alfred “Jack” Nitzsche) → Producer, arranger, session musician, solo singer/songwriter, “The Lonely Surfer” (#39, 1963), worked with Phil Spector in the early 60s, with Buffy Sainte-Marie co-wrote “Up Where We Belong” (#1, 1982) from the film An Officer And A Gentleman (1982), produced albums for The Rolling Stones, Neil Young and others, died after a heart attack on 8/25/2000, age 63
1939 ● Mel Carter → Soul-pop and Easy Listening singer with several minor hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart but with eight Adult Contemporary Top 40 hits, including “Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me” (#8, AC #1, 1965)
1939 ● Simon Napier-Bell → Music industry journeyman bandmember, session musician, producer, songwriter, journalist and author, at one time or another served as manager for The Yardbirds, John’s Children, Marc Bolan, Japan, London, Asia, Ultravox, Boney M., Wham! and others
1944 ● Howard Wyeth → Session drummer for Bob Dylan, Don McLean, Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell, Robert Gordon, Link Wray and others, grandson of painter Noel Wyeth, died of a heart attack 3/27/1996, age 51
1944 ● Alan Gordon → Songwriter and musician noted for co-writing “Happy Together” by The Turtles (#1, 1967) and “Celebrate” by Three Dog Night (#15, 1970), and writing “My Heart Belongs To Me” by Barbra Streisand (#4, 1977), died from cancer on 11/22/2008, age 64
1946 ● Frankie Cannibal / (Francisco “Frankie Cannibal” Garcia) → Lead vocals for pioneering L.A. “East Side Sound” Mexican-American one hit wonder brown-eyed-soul/garage rock quartet Cannibal And The Headhunters (“Land Of A Thousand Dances,” #30, 1965), died from AIDS on 1/21/1996, age 49
1948 ● Larry Groce → Folk and children’s music singer/songwriter, radio DJ and voice-over artist remembered for his one hit wonder single “Junk Food Junkie” (#9, 1976), appeared on nine Disney albums between 1979 and 1990, founded and continues as host and music director of Mountain Stage, the live music program produced by West Virginia Public Radio and aired nationally on NPR
1950 ● Pete Carr / (Jesse Willard Carr) → Guitarist, session musician, producer and member of early Southern rock The Hour Glass with Gregg and Duane Allman, member of the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section (also known as The Swampers), the renowned studio musician ensemble that recorded hundreds of songs and albums at Muscle Shoals Studio in Alabama, including hits by Aretha Franklin, The Staple Singers, Paul Simon, Lynyrd Skynyrd and countless others, recorded with Lenny LeBlanc in the soft rock duet LeBlanc & Carr (“Falling,” #13, 1977), played lead guitar on many hits songs, including Bob Seger‘s “Mainstreet” and Paul Simon‘s “Kodachrome”
1950 ● Peter Frampton → Blues-rock and pop-rock guitarist, songwriter, vocalist and bandleader for The Herd, “I Don’t Want Our Loving To Die” (UK #5, 1968), Humble Pie, “Hot ‘N’ Nasty” (#52, 1972), Frampton’s Camel, 70s-80s solo superstar, “Show Me The Way” (#6, 1976), toured in 90s with Bill Wyman & The Rhythm Kings and Ringo Starr’s All-Star Band
1951 ● Paul Carrack → Journeyman keyboards, guitar and vocals for Brit pub rock/blue-eyed soul Ace, “How Long” (#3, 1975), then New Wave pop-rock Squeeze, “Tempted” (#49, 1981) and pop-rock Mike + The Mechanics, “All I Need Is A Miracle” (#5, 1986), plus a single solo hit, “Don’t Shed A Tear” (#9, 1987)
1955 ● Arthur Baker → Club DJ and early hip-hop producer, including New Edition‘s “Candy Girl” (Dance/Club #17, R&B #1, 1983) and New Order‘s “Confusion” (Dance/Club #5, 1983), then Afrika Bambaataa‘s “Planet Rock” (#48, R&B #4, 1986), plus a solo hit, “Let There Be Love” (Dance/Club #14, 1991)
1956 ● Kenny Lyon → Guitarist and music producer, toured and recorded with multiple bands, most notably post-punk rock then teen-pop The Lemonheads (“Into Your Arms,” Modern Rock #1, 1993) and indie pop Brazzaville, produced albums for numerous indie groups, issued two solo albums and authored a novel, short stories and screenplays
1966 ● Kimberley Dahme → Current bassist (since 2002) for reunited 70s-80s arena rock Boston, “More Than A Feeling” (#5, 1976), record producer
1969 ● Craig Logan → Bassist in Brit teen idol pop boy band Bros, “I Owe You Nothing” (UK #1, 1988), left in 1989 for a career as a producer, manager and EMI Records executive, worked with Tina Turner, Sade, Joe Cocker, Pink and others, founded Logan Media Entertainment in 2006
1974 ● Shavo Odadjian → Bassist for Grammy-winning, Armenian-American hard rock/alt metal System Of A Down, “Aerials” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2002)
1978 ● Jason Stollsteimer → Vocals, guitar, principle songwriter and producer for indie rock The Von Blondies, “C’mon C’mon” (Modern Rock #25, UK #21, 2004), since 2011 with The Hounds Below
1979 ● Daniel Johns → Frontman, guitarist, vocalist and songwriter for Aussie alt-grunge-rock Silverchair, “Tomorrow” (Modern Rock #1, 1994)
1984 ● Amelle Berrabah → Vocalist who replaced co-founding member Mutya Buena in Brit multi-racial pop girl group Sugababes, “Hole In The Head” (Dance/Club #1, 2004)

April 23
1936 ● Roy Orbison → Rockabilly-rooted, country-pop/rock ‘n’ roll quavering singer/songwriter, “(Oh) Pretty Woman” (#1, 1964) plus 22 more Top 40 hits, joined supergroup The Traveling Wilburys with Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne and Tom Petty in 1988 (“Handle With Care”, Mainstream Rock #2, 1988), died of a heart attack at the height of a career revival on 1/25/2005, age 52
1939 ● Ray Peterson → Four-octave pop-rock singer, “Tell Laura I Love Her” (#7, 1960), became Baptist minister in the 70s, died from cancer on 1/25/2005, age 65
1940 ● Dale Houston → With performing partner Grace Broussard in two hit wonder Dale & Grace (“I’m Leaving It Up To You,” #1, 1963 and “Stop And Think It Over,” #6, 1964), died from heart failure on 9/27/2007, age 67
1944 ● Sandra Dee / (Alexandra Zuck) → Occasional singer best known as the ingénue-playing, Golden Globe-winning film actress, star of the teen beach film Gidget (1959) and former wife of pop crooner Bobby Darin, died of renal failure on 2/20/2005, age 60
1945 ● John Allen → Lead guitar for British Invasion pop-rock The Nashville Teens, “Tobacco Road” (#16, 1964)
1949 ● John Miles → Brit singer/songwriter and guitarist, “Slow Down” (Dance/Club #2, UK #10, 1977), managed Tina Turner‘s tours and did session work for Alan Parsons Project, Jimmy Page and Joe Cocker
1951 ● Cliff Hugo / (Clifford Clyde Hugo) → Bass guitarist for Brit art/prog rock Supertramp, “The Logical Song” (#6, 1979), also worked with Ray Charles, The Beach Boys, Melissa Manchester and others
1952 ● Narada Michael Walden → Drummer, vocalist, songwriter and producer, performed with the Mahavishnu Orchestra, session work for Jeff Beck, produced and/or wrote/co-wrote songs for Aretha Franklin, Jefferson Starship, Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, solo career includes “I Shoulda Loved You” (R&B #4, 1980)
1953 ● Rob Dean → Guitarist for Brit New Wave art-rock Japan, “Ghosts” (UK #5, 1982)
1955 ● Captain Sensible / (Raymond Burns) → Co-founder, vocals, guitar and songwriting for first-wave punk rockers The Damned, “Eloise” (UK #3, 1986), solo
1960 ● David Gedge → Guitar and vocals for Brit indie pop-rock The Wedding Present, “Come Play With Me” (UK #10, 1992), the band released a single in every month of 1992 and earned 12 UK Top 30 hits, the only band with more than 10 new UK hits in one year
1960 ● Steve Clark → Guitarist for hard rock/metal Def Leppard, “Love Bites” (#1, 1988), died after a night of heavy boozing combined with prescription drugs on 1/8/1991, age 30
1964 ● Gen / (Simon Matthews) → Drummer for techno-electronic pop-dance Jesus Jones, “Right Here, Right Now” (#2, 1991)
1965 ● Tommy DeCarlo → Current lead singer for arena rock Boston, “More Than A Feeling” (#5, 1976), joined the band to replace deceased lead singer Brad Delp at the invitation of bandleader Tom Scholz, to whom DeCarlo sent Myspace tapes of himself covering Boston singles
1968 ● Paul Clifford → Bassist for Britpop The Wonder Stuff, covered Tommy Roe‘s “Dizzy” (UK #1, 1991)
1969 ● Stan Frazier → Vocals and DJ for funk-pop-rock Sugar Ray, “Fly” (#1, 1997)
1983 ● Taio Cruz → Brit R&B/dance-pop singer, occasional rapper, songwriter and entrepreneur, “Break Your Heart” (#1, 2010)

April 24
1923 ● Freddy Bienstock → Vienna-born music publishing executive whose Jewish family resettled in the U.S. in 1939, first worked in the 40s as a “song plugger” salesman for writers in the famous Bill Building in New York City, later as song screener for Elvis Presley and others, and beginning in the 60s as a publishing executive with several firms, including Carlin Music which continues and controls the rights to thousands of pop and rock songs, died on 9/20/2009, age 86
1933 ● Freddie Scott → R&B/soul singer, “Are You Lonely For Me” (1966), died 4/24/1933,, age 74
1937 ● Dick Kniss → Stand-up bass player and “fourth member” behind folk-pop trio Peter, Paul & Mary, also in John Denver‘s band in the 70s, co-wrote “Sunshine On My Shoulders” (#1, 1974), died from chronic pulmonary on 1/25/2012, age 74
1940 ● George Tomsco → Guitarist for Tex-Mex instrumental rock ‘n’ roll The Fireballs, “Torquay” (#39, 1959)
1942 ● Barbra Streisand → Stage, film and TV actress, pop vocalist, “The Way We Were” (#1, 1974), “Woman In Love” (*#1, 1980) and 4 other US #1 pop hits
1943 ● Glen Dale / (Richard Garforth) → Guitars and vocals for Brit pop/rock harmony vocals The Fortunes, “You’ve Got Your Troubles” (#7, 1965)
1944 ● Bernard St. Clair Lee → Vocals for R&B/soul-disco The Hues Corporation, “Rock The Boat” (#1, 1974), one of the earliest disco hits, continued to perform with incarnations of the band until his death due to natural causes on 3/8/2011, age 66
1945 ● Doug Clifford → Drummer for roots rock/”swamp” rock Creedence Clearwater Revival, “Down On The Corner” (#3, 1969)
1945 ● Robert Knight → Founder and frontman for R&B/harmony soul The Paramounts, “Free Me” (R&B #15, 1961), then 60s one hit wonder solo career, “Everlasting Love” (#13, 1967)
1947 ● Glenn Cornick → First bassist for long-lived Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973), then formed Wild Turkey and later Paris
1947 ● Hubert Ann Kelly → Vocals for R&B/soul-disco The Hues Corporation, “Rock The Boat” (#1, 1974), one of the earliest disco hits
1948 ● Steve York → Bassist for Brit beat pop-rock Manfred Mann, “Do Wah Diddy Diddy” (#1, 1964)
1951 ● Nigel Harrison → Bass player with New Wave pop-rock Blondie, “Heart Of Glass” (#1, 1979) from 1977-82, also a member of glam-rock quintet Silverhead
1954 ● Jack Blades → Bassist with hard rock Night Ranger, “Sister Christian” (#5, 1984), then joined Ted Nugent and Tommy Shaw (Styx) in pop metal/arena rock supergroup Damn Yankees, “High Enough” (#3, 1990)
1955 ● Gary Cambra → Guitars and keyboards for camp-rock pop-rock satirists The Tubes, “She’s A Beauty” (#10, 1978)
1957 ● David J. / (David J. Haskins) → Bass and vocals for seminal goth-rock Bauhaus, “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” (1979), solo and goth-pop Love And Rockets, “So Alive” (#3, 1989)
1958 ● Boris Williams → Drummer for post-punk art-glam-goth rock The Cure, “Friday I’m In Love” (Modern Rock #1, 1992)
1960 ● Paula Yates → UK TV host (music shows The Tube and The Big Breakfast), ex-wife of Sir Bob Geldof (Boomtown Rats) and girlfriend of INXS singer Michael Hutchence, died from a heroin overdose on 9/17/2000, age 40
1963 ● Billy Gould → Bassist for influential metal/funk/hip hop/punk fusion band Faith No More, “Epic” (#9, 1990)
1964 ● Paul Ryder → Bassist for Manchester electro-dance club Happy Mondays, “Stinkin Thinkin” (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1967 ● Patty Schemel → Second drummer for grunge rock Hole, “Celebrity Skin” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1998)
1967 ● Shannon Larkin → Drummer for hard rock/metal Ugly Kid Joe, then hard rock Godsmack, “Straight Out Of Line” (Mainstream #1, 2003)
1968 ● Aaron Comess → Drummer for alt blues-rock jam band Spin Doctors, “Two Princes” (#7, 1993)
1971 ● Jas Mann / (Jasbinder Singh Mann) → Brit record producer and one hit wonder singer/songwriter, “Spaceman” (UK #1, 1996)
1974 ● Barry James Stock → Guitar and backing vocals for Canadian punk/metal Three Days Grace, “Just Like You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1974 ● Brian Marshall → Bassist for Grammy-winning post-grunge Creed, “With Arms Wide Open” (#1, 2000)
1982 ● Kelly Clarkson → Pop singer and inaugural-season (2002) winner on American Idol, “Since U Been Gone” (#1, 2005)
1984 ● Tyson Ritter → Co-founder, lead vocals and bass guitar for alt rock/power pop The All-American Rejects, “Swing, Swing” (Modern Rock #8, 2003)
1987 ● Ben Howard → Folk-pop singer (“Only Love,” AAA #6, UK #9, 2012) and two-time 2013 BRIT Award winner (Breakthrough Act and Solo Male Artist)

April 25
1913 ● Earl Bostic → Underappreciated jazz and R&B alto saxophonist, “Temptation” (R&B Top 10, 1948), died of a heart attack while performing on stage on 10/28/1965, age 52
1917 ● Ella Fitzgerald → The “First Lady of Song”, Grammy-winning six-decade jazz/R&B/scat mega-diva, “Mack The Knife” (#27, R&B #6, 1960), died from diabetes on 6/15/1996, age 79
1923 ● Albert King / (Albert Nelson) → Highly influential blues guitarist, one of the “Three Kings of the Blues Guitar” with B. B. King and Freddie King, “Cold Feet” (#67, R&B #20, 1968), died from a heart attack on 12/21/1992, age 69
1928 ● Jinny Osborn / (Virginia A. Cole) → Original member and tenor vocals with long lasting, close-harmony girl group The Chordettes, missed the recording of the mega-hit “Mr. Sandman (#1, UK #11, 1954) while raising a new daughter but sang lead on their second big hit, “Lollipop” (#2, R&B #3, 1958), died from cancer on 5/19/2003, age 75
1928 ● Vassar Clements → Innovative, Grammy-winning jazz, swing and bluegrass fiddler with over 30 solo albums and years of session and touring work with a broad array of artists, including Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Jerry Garcia and David Grisman‘s Old & In The Way,The Monkees and Jimmy Buffett, continued to perform until just prior to his death from lung and brain cancer on 8/16/2005, age 77
1932 ● Gator Jackson / (Willis “Gator” Jackson) → Soul-jazz saxophonist and bandleader known best for his “honking” style and close collaborations and short marriage to R&B diva Ruth Brown (“(Mama) He Treats Your Daughter Mean” (#23, R&B #1, 1953), died following heart surgery on 10/25/1987, age 55
1932 ● Gene Gene the Dancing Machine / (Eugene Patton) → NBC Studios stagehand turned TV personality as a regular dancing skit performer on the absurdist talent search program The Gong Show (1976-78), whereon he would shuffle and sway to Count Basie‘s “Jumpin’ At The Woodside,” died from complications of diabetes on 3/9/2015, age 82
1933 ● Jerry Leiber → Lyricist, producer, record label owner and one-half of the Lieber & Stoller hit songwriting duo, co-wrote dozens of R&B, pop and rock classics, including “Hound Dog” (Elvis Presley, #1, 1956) “Yakety Yak” (The Coasters, #1, 1958) and “Love Potion #9” (The Searchers, #3, 1965), died from cardio-pulmonary failure on 8/22/2011, age 78
1943 ● Tony Christie → Brit pop singer, “I Did What I Did For Maria” (UK #2, 1971), in 2005 re-released his 1971 UK #18 single “Is This The Way To Amarillo” in support of Comic Relief, the song went to #1 on the UK chart 33 years after its original release
1944 ● Charlie Harper → Founder, frontman and vocals for early punk rockers UK Subs, “Stranglehold” (UK #26, 1979)
1945 ● Bjorn Ulvaeus → Guitar and vocals for internationally successful Scandinavian pop group ABBA, “Dancing Queen” (#1, 1976)
1945 ● Mike Kogel → Lead singer for Spanish rock ‘n roll band Los Bravos, “Black Is Black” (US #4, 1966), the first US Top 10 hit by a Spanish band
1945 ● Stu Cook → Bassist for roots rock/”swamp” rock Creedence Clearwater Revival, “Down On The Corner” (#3, 1969)
1946 ● Ronnie Gilbert → Founding member and basis for early psychedelic rock quintet Blues Magoos, “(We Ain’t Got) Nothin’ Yet” (#5, 1967)
1949 ● Mike Brown / (Michael Lookofsky) → Keyboards and songwriter for “baroque pop” The Left Banke, composed “Walk Away Renee” (#5, 1967) and “Pretty Ballerina” (#15, 1967), then formed pop-rock quartet Stories but left before the band’s “Brother Louie” became a US #1 hit in 1973, died from heart failure on 3/19/2015, age 66
1950 ● Steve Ferrone → Drummer for Scottish blue-eyed soul Average White Band, “Pick Up The Pieces” (#1, 1974), sessions
1955 ● David Sikes → Second bassist (1987-98) for 70s-80s arena rock Boston, “More Than A Feeling” (#5, 1976), then joined hard rock/arena pop Giuffria
1958 ● Fish / (Derek William Dick) → Vocals for Brit prog-rock revival group Marillion, “Kayleigh” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1985), later solo and now radio DJ
1960 ● Paul Baloff → Heavy metal singer best known for his three stints as lead vocalist and songwriter for thrash metal Exodus (LP Fabulous Disaster, #39, 1989), died after he was removed from life support following a stroke-induced coma on 2/2/2002, age 41
1964 ● Andy Bell → Flamboyant, openly gay vocalist for Brit synth-pop duo Erasure, “Chains Of Love” (#12, UK #1, 1988) and 16 other UK Top 10 hits
1964 ● Maya Gilder → Keyboards for Brit New Wave synth-pop Furniture, “Brilliant Mind” (UK #21, 1986)
1965 ● Eric Avery → Co-founding member and bassist for alt rock/post-punk Jane’s Addiction, “Been Caught Stealing” (Mainstream Rock #29, 1990), toured with Garbage and Peter Murphy
1965 ● Simon Fowler → Vocals for Britpop/trad rock Ocean Colour Scene, “The Day We Caught The Train” (UK #4, 1996) plus 16 other UK Top 40 singles
1980 ● Jacob Underwood → Vocals for pre-fab teen idol boy-band O-Town, “All Or Nothing” (#3, 2001)

April 26
1886 ● Ma Rainey / (Gertrude Pridgett) → The “Mother of the Blues,” early female blues singer and first to record, including the earliest version of “See See Rider” (1924), died from a heart attack on 12/22/1939, age 53
1919 ● Johnny Shines / (John Ned Shines) → Top slide guitarist and Delta blues singer, performed with Robert Johnson, Big Walter Horton, Willie Dixon and Robert Lockwood, Jr., died on 4/20/1992, age 72
1925 ● Jorgen Ingmann → Danish jazz guitarist turned one hit wonder instrumental pop Jorgen Ingmann & His Guitars, covered “Apache” (#2, 1961)
1938 ● Duane Eddy → Influential electric guitar pioneer, rockabilly star and “twangy” instrumental rocker with fifteen Top 40 hits between 1958 and 1963, including “Rebel Rouser” (#6, 1958), continues to perform into the 10s
1938 ● Maurice Williams → Frontman and lead vocals for R&B/doo wop The Zodiacs, “Stay” (#1, 1960), solo
1940 ● Giorgio Moroder / (Hansjörg Moroder) → Disco and synth-pop producer including Donna Summer, “Love To Love You Baby” (#1, 1976), film soundtrack composer for Midnight Express (1978), Flashdance (1983), Top Gun (1986) and others
1941 ● Claudine Clark → One hit wonder singer and composer who, unlike most 60s female pop stars, wrote her own hit song, “Party Lights” (#5, R&B #3, 1962)
1942 ● Bobby Rydell / (Robert Ridarelli) → Former teen idol pop singer, “Wild One” (#2, 1960), plus 17 other Top 40 hits, now successful nightclub and concert performer
1943 ● Gary Wright → Keyboards and vocals for Brit blues-rock Spooky Tooth, then synth-rock solo, “Dream Weaver” (#2, 1976)
1945 ● Tony Murray → Bassist for 60s garage/proto-punk/”caveman rock” The Troggs, “Wild Thing” (#1, 1966)
1946 ● Bucky Wilkin / (John Wilkin) → Guitarist, vocals and songwriting for country-tinged surf rock Ronny & The Daytonas, “G.T.O.” (#4, 1964)
1946 ● Vito Balsamo → Vocals for New York R&B/doo wop one hit wonder Vito & The Salutations, “Unchained Melody” (1963)
1951 ● Nick Garvey → Bassist and songwriter for early pub rock Ducks Deluxe, then power pop/rock The Motors, “Airport” (UK #4, 1978)
1952 ● Neol Davies → Founder and guitarist for multi-racial 2 Tone ska revival The Selecter, “On My Radio” (UK #8, 1979)
1959 ● John Corabi → Journeyman heavy metal guitar and vocals, hair-metal Mötley Crüe, “Dr. Feelgood” (#6, 1989), Ratt, others
1960 ● Roger Taylor → Drummer for New Wave pop-rock Duran Duran, “Hungry Like The Wolf” (#3, 1982) and “(Reach Up For The) Sunrise” (Dance/Club #1, 2001)
1961 ● Chris Mars → Drummer for alt-rock pioneers The Replacements, “I’ll Be You” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1989)
1970 ● Ruth-Ann Boyle → Vocals for Brit breakbeat/trip-hop trio Olive, “You’re Not Alone” (Dance/Club #5, 1997)
1970 ● T-Boz / (Tionne Tenese Watkins) → Vocals for R&B/urban soul-dance-pop girl trio TLC, “Creep” (#1, 1994)
1971 ● Jay DeMarcus / (Stanley Wayne DeMarcus, Jr.) → Bassist and harmony vocals for country-pop Rascal Flatts, “Here Come Goodbye” (#11, Country #1, 2009)
1975 ● Joey Jordison → Drummer for Grammy-winning alt metal/rap-metal Slipknot, “Duality” (Mainstream Rock #5, 2004)
1976 ● Jose Antonio Pasillas II → Drummer for alt-metal Incubus, “Drive” (#9, 2001)
1981 ● Ms. Dynamite / (Niomi McLean Daley) → Brit R&B/hip hop/garage singer and rapper, “It Takes More” (UK #7, 2002)
1982 ● Jonathan Lee → Vocals for pre-fab teen pop S Club 7, “Never Had A Dream Come True” (#10, 2001)

April 27
1904 ● Syd Nathan → Music executive who contributed to the development of R&B and rock ‘n’ roll music through his ownership of King Records and its subsidiaries, which he founded in 1943 and brought obscure young artists to the national stage, including Hank Ballard & The Midnighters (“Work With Me Annie,” R&B #1, 1954) and James Brown (“Please, Please, Please,” R&B #6, 1956), who recorded on King through the 60s (“I Got You (I Feel Good),” #3, R&B #1, 1965), the label became the sixth largest record company in the US before the mid-60s payola scandal impacted sales, died from heart disease on 5/5/1968, age 63
1932 ● Maxine Brown → Vocals for 50s-60s country-folk harmony sibling vocal trio The Browns, “The Three Bells” (#1, 1959), solo
1932 ● Casey Kasem / (Kemil Amen Kasem) → Legendary and iconic radio DJ who confessed to not loving rock ‘n’ roll but built a long and lucrative career from it , creator and long-time host of one of the most popular syndicated music programs on radio, American Top 40, voice-over artist for TV commercials and shows (“Shaggy” of Scooby-Do cartoons), died from a degenerative neurological and muscular disease on 6/15/2014, age 82
1944 ● Cuba Gooding, Sr. → Lead vocals for R&B/romantic soul The Main Ingredient, “Everybody Plays The Fool” (#3, 1972) and eight other R&B Top 40 hits, found dead in his car on a busy street in a Los Angeles neighborhood on 4/20/2017, age 72
1947 ● Anne Peebles → R&B/Southern soul singer, “I Can’t Stand The Rain” (#38, R&B #6, 1973)
1947 ● Gordon Haskell → Folk-pop singer/songwriter, briefly with King Crimson, then sessions and solo, resurfaced in 2001 with “How Wonderful You Are” (UK #2, 2001) and a UK #2 album, Harry’s Bar
1947 ● Peter Ham → Guitar, vocals, chief songwriter 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 4/24/1975, age 27
1948 ● Kate Pierson → Bouffant-haired vocalist and frontwoman for campy alt-dance-rock The B-52’s, “Love Shack” (#3, 1989)
1949 ● Clive Taylor → Bassist for Welsh pop-rock Amen Corner, “(If Paradise Is) Half As Nice” (UK #1, 1969)
1949 ● Herb Murrell → Vocals for R&B/Philly soul The Stylistics, “You Make Me Feel Brand New” (#2, 1974) plus 15 R&B Top 40 singles
1951 ● Ace Frehley / (Paul “Ace” Frehley) → Influential hard rock guitarist and vocals for campy hard/glam-rock Kiss, “Detroit Rock City” (#7, 1976), solo, “New York Groove” (#13, 1979)
1954 ● Wally Palmar / (Volodymyr Palamarchuk) → Ukrainian-American founding member and lead vocalist for New Wave pop-rock The Romantics, “What I Like About You” (#49, 1980) and “Talking In Your Sleep” (#3, 1984), later played with Ringo Starr‘s All-Star Band and co-founded garage rock supergroup The Empty Hearts
1959 ● Marco Pirroni → Guitarist for post-punk New Wave glam-pop Adam & The Ants, “Goody Two Shoes” (#12, 1982)
1959 ● Sheena Easton / (Sheena Shirley Orr) → Grammy-winning pop singer, “Morning Train (Nine To Five)” (#1, 1980) and James Bond movie theme song “For Your Eyes Only” (#4, 1981) and 11 other Top 40 singles, stage and TV actress
1969 ● Mica Paris / (Michelle Wallen) → Brit R&B/soul-pop singer, “My One Temptation” (#97, Adult Contemporary #8, 1989)
1972 ● Bob Coombes → Keyboards for Brit punk-pop trio Supergrass, “Alright/Time” (Modern Rock #1, 1995)
1979 ● Will Boyd → Bassist for Grammy-winning goth-pop-metal Evanescence, “Bring Me To Life” (#5, 2003)
1984 ● Patrick Stump → Lead singer, rhythm guitarist and songwriter for alt rock/punk-pop Fall Out Boy, “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race” (#2, 2007), solo
1984 ● Yonah Higgins → Vocals for Brit R&B/dance-pop teen sibling girl-group Cleopatra, “Cleopatra’s Theme” (#26, 1998)

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This Week’s Birthdays (April 7 – 13)

Happy Birthday this week to:

April 07
1908 ● Percy Faith → Composer, bandleader, producer and easy listening/pop singer, “The Theme From A Summer Place” (#1, 1960), died of cancer on 2/9/1976, age 67
1912 ● Jack Lawrence → Hall of Fame songwriter and musical theater lyricist noted for songs that helped launch the careers of The Ink Spots (“If I Didn’t Care,” #2, 1939), Frank Sinatra (“All Or Nothing At All,” #2, 1943) and Bobby Darin (“By The Sea,” #6, 1959), wrote the song “Linda” for his friend Lee Eastman‘s daughter, who grew up to marry Paul McCartney, died from complications of a broken pelvis from a fall in his home on 3/16/2009, age 96
1915 ● Billie Holiday / (Eleanora Fagan Gough) → Known as “Lady Day”, hugely successful and revered jazz-blues singer, “Lady Sings The Blues” (1956), died from liver failure on 7/17/1959, age 44
1920 ● Ravi Shankar / (Rabindra Shankar Chowdery) → World-renowned Indian sitarist, mentor to George Harrison, music professor and university department head, member of Indian parliament, father of contemporary jazz-pop star Norah Jones, died from complications following heart valve replacement surgery on 12/11/2012, age 92
1922 ● Mongo Santamaria / (Ramón “Mongo” Santamaría Rodríguez) → Grammy-winning Cuban percussionist and Latin-jazz bandleader, “Watermelon Man” (#10, R&B #8, 1963), died following a stroke on 2/1/2003, age 80
1935 ● Bobby Bare → Country-pop singer/songwriter and guitarist, “All American Boy” (#2, 1959) and Grammy-winning “Detroit City” (#16, Adult Contemporary #4, 1963) plus over 50 Country Top 40 hits from 1964 to 1983
1937 ● Charlie Thomas → Vocals for R&B/doo wop The Five Crowns, who changed their name in 1958 to The Drifters, “Under The Boardwalk” (#4, 1964)
1938 ● Spencer Dryden → Drummer for 60s psych-rock Jefferson Airplane, “Somebody To Love” (#5, 1967), then country-folk-rock New Riders Of The Purple Sage, “Panama Red” (1973), died of cancer on 1/11/2005, age 66
1938 ● Freddie Hubbard / (Frederick Dewayne Hubbard) → Renowned jazz/be bop NEA Jazz Master trumpeter with a Grammy-winning album (First Light, 1972) which led to accusations of commercial sell-out, performed in numerous collaborations with George Benson, John Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, Stanley Turrentine and many others, died from a heart attack on 11/26/2008, age 70
1943 ● Mick Abrahams / (Michael Timothy Abrahams) → Original lead guitarist for long-lived Brit folk-rock Jethro Tull, “Living In The Past” (#11, 1973), left after a falling-out with bandleader Ian Anderson, formed blues-rock Blodwyn Pig that released two charting albums in the early 70s
1943 ● Alan Buck → Drummer for early 60s Brit pop The Four Pennies, “Juliet” (UK #1, 1964), the most important British Invasion era act with no chart presence in the U.S., died from a heart attack on 3/15/1994, age 50
1947 ● Florian Schneider-Esleben → Drums and keyboards for German electro-rock pioneers Kraftwerk, “Autobahn” (#25, 1975)
1947 ● Patricia Bennett → Vocals for top-tier 60s New York girl group The Chiffons, “He’s So Fine” (#1, 1963)
1947 ● Skip Pitts / (Charles Pitts) → Soul, funk and blues guitarist, “wah-wah” style innovator, session musician with Stax Records, performed with Isaac Hayes (soundtrack album Shaft, 1971), also worked with James Brown, Otis Redding, The Isley Brothers, Cyndi Lauper and others, died of cancer on 5/1/2012, age 65
1948 ● Carol Douglas → Disco diva with the early dance-pop/disco hit “Doctor’s Orders” (#11, Disco #2, 1975) and several other Dance/Club chart singles but little commercial success, continued to perform in clubs into the 90s
1948 ● Dallas Taylor, Jr. → Session drummer for John Sebastian and with Lowell George in pre-Little Feat folk-rock The Factory, founding member of 60s psych rock Clear Light (“Mr. Blue,” 1967), joined Crosby, Stills & Nash for their debut album (1969) and their follow-up with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Déjà Vu (1970), played with Stephen Stills on his solo albums and with his band Manassas, toured with Paul Butterfield‘s band in the late 70s, died from liver failure on 1/18/2015, age 66
1949 ● John Oates → Singer/songwriter and one half of Philly soul-pop-rock duo Hall & Oates, “Private Eyes” (#1, 1981), plus 20 other Top 20 hits
1949 ● Wells Kelly → Multi-instrumentalist musician, early member of pop-rock King Harvest (his brother Sherman wrote the hit “Dancing In The Moonlight” – #1, 1973) and co-founder of pop-rock Orleans (“Still The One,” #5, 1976), toured with Steve Forbert, Clarence Clemons and Meat Loaf in the early 80s, found dead on the front steps of a London flat after a night of partying during a tour on 10/29/1984, age 35
1950 ● Steve Ellis / (Stephen John Ellis) → Vocals for London-based R&B/soul-pop Love Affair, “Everlasting Love” (UK #1, 1968) and four other UK Top 20 hits in the late 60s, left in 1969 for a marginal solo career and stints with various Brit rock bands, still records and performs with The New Amen Corner into the 10s
1951 ● Janis Ian / (Janis Eddy Fink) → Grammy-winning, often controversial singer/songwriter, first hit was at age 16, “Society’s Child (Baby I’ve Been Thinking)” (#14, 1967), then “At Seventeen” (#3, 1975)
1951 ● Bruce Gary → Drummer for power pop The Knack, “My Sharona” (#1, 1979), worked with Albert Collins, Jack Bruce, Dr. John in the 70s and Bob Dylan, Sheryl Crow, Yoko Ono, Bette Midler and others, and as a producer before dying of lymphoma on 8/22/2006, age 55
1960 ● Simon Climie → Songwriter and member of the Brit pop duo Climie Fisher, “Love Changes (Everything)” (#23, 1988), lately collaborating with Eric Clapton
1962 ● Barbara Kessler → Folk-pop singer and songwriter (“Deep Country,” 1994)
1978 ● Duncan James / (Duncan Matthew James Inglis) → Actor, TV host and singer with Brit boy band Blue, “If You Come Back” (UK #1, 2002), solo

April 08
1896 ● Yip Harburg / (Edgar Yipsel Harburg) → One of the top Broadway and Hollywood lyricists of the 30s and 40s, wrote the lyrics to multiple pop standards, including “Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?” (1932), co-wrote the songs to The Wizard Of Oz and the Oscar-winning “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” (1939), died from a heart attack on 3/5/1981, age 84
1914 ● Irving Taylor / (Irving Goldberg) → Composer, lyricist and screenwriter known for his late 50s whimsical novelty and parody songs, and for co-writing “Everybody Loves Somebody” (Dean Martin, #1, 1964) which improbably knocked The Beatles‘ “A Hard Day’s Night” off Billboard’s top spot, also wrote for Bob Newhart and Jonathan Winters on their TV show scripts, died on 12/3/1983, age 69
1920 ● Carmen McRae → Pianist, songwriter and versatile jazz singer, worked with Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie and Count Basie, recorded over 60 albums and was a seven-time Grammy nominee for Best Jazz Performance – Female, received a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters Award in 1994, continued to tour and perform until just before her death following a stroke on 11/10/1994, age 74
1929 ● Jacques Brel → Internationally acclaimed Belgian singer and songwriter whose compositions have been interpreted by Marc Almond, David Bowie, Ray Charles, Judy Collins, The Kingston Trio, Frank Sinatra, Nina Simone, sold over 25 million records worldwide, all in French, died of cancer 10/9/1978, age 49
1941 ● J.J. Jackson / (Jerome Louis Jackson) → R&B/soul singer and organist, “But It’s Alright” (#22, R&B #4, 1966)
1941 ● Peggy Lennon / (Margaret Anne Lennon) → With her sisters, vocals in semi-religious pop vocal quartet The Lennon Sisters (“Tonight You Belong To Me,” #15, 1956), performed regularly on TV variety shows, including The Lawrence Welk Show from 1955 to 1968, retired in 1999 and was replaced by her younger sister, Mimi
1942 ● Chappo Chapman / (Roger Chapman) → Co-frontman and lead vocals for Brit art/blues-rock Family, then hard blues-rock Streetwalkers, now solo
1942 ● Leon Huff → With partner Kenny Gamble in the famed Philadelphia songwriting and production team of Gamble & Huff, crafted the “Philly soul” sound as the founders and chief creative team for Motown-rival Philadelphia International Records, wrote and produced dozens of hits from “Expressway To Your Heart” (The Soul Survivors, #4, R&B #3, 1967) to “Love Train” (The O’Jays, #1, R&B #1, 1872) and “Close the Door” (Teddy Pendergrass, #25, R&B #1, 1978), after the disco era the shine on the label faded but the two continue to write into the 10s
1944 ● Keef Hartley → Drummer for Brit beat group Rory Storm & The Hurricanes (replaced Ringo Starr), then blues-rock John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, then founded jazz-pop-rock fusion Keef Hartley Band and was the first British act to appear at Woodstock, died from unspecified causes on 11/26/2011, age 67
1944 ● Deke Richards / (Dennis Lussier) → Songwriter and record producer, part of the Motown songwriting team known as “The Clan” and later “The Corporation,” co-wrote multiple hits for several Motown bands, most importantly bubblegum-soul The Jackson 5 including “I Want You Back” (#1, 1970), “ABC” (#1, 1970), retired to operate a vintage movie poster business and died from esophageal cancer on 3/24/2013, age 68
1947 ● Steve Howe → Lead guitarist in archetypal, pioneer progressive rock band Yes, “Roundabout” (#13, 1971) and “Owner Of A Lonely Heart” (#1, 1983), then pop-rock Asia, “Heat Of The Moment” (#4, 1982), also Bodast, GTR, the Syndicats and Tomorrow
1947 ● Larry Norman → Musician, singer, songwriter, record label owner and pioneer of Christian rock music with a catalogue of over 100 albums despite an often contentious relationship with the Christian church and the Christian music industry, his long hair and radical social themes kept his records out of Bible stores for much of his career, died from complications of long-term heart ailments on 2/27/2008, age 60
1956 ● Justin Sullivan → Frontman, guitarist and lyricist for post-punk/alt rock New Model Army, “No Rest” (UK #28, 1985)
1962 ● Adam Mole → Keyboards for “grebo” dance-rock Pop Will Eat Itself, “X, Y & Zee” (Modern Rock #11, 1991)
1962 ● Izzy Stradlin / (Jeffrey Isbell) → Guitarist for hard rock Guns N’ Roses, “Sweet Child O’ Mine” (#1, 1988), also fronted the Ju Ju Hounds
1962 ● Jem Kelly → Guitars for New Wave/New Romantic pop-rock The Lotus Eaters, “The First Picture Of You” (UK #15, 1983)
1963 ● Donita Sparks → Co-founder, guitar and vocals for all-girl post-punk/grunge band L7, “Pretend We’re Dead” (Alt Rock #8, 1992)
1963 ● Julian Lennon → Guitarist and singer/songwriter, pop-rock “Too Late For Goodbyes” (#11, 1984), son of John and only child of his first wife Cynthia
1964 ● Biz Markie / (Marcel Theo Hall) → Freestyle rhymer/rapper, “Just A Friend” (#9, Rap #5, 1989)
1971 ● Darren Jessee → Drummer for piano-based indie pop-rock Ben Folds Five, “Brick” (Modern Rock #6, 1998)
1972 ● The Pig / (Paul Dedrick Gray) → Founding member, bassist and songwriter for Grammy-winning alt metal/rap-metal Slipknot, “Duality” (Mainstream Rock #5, 2004), died from an accidental drug overdose on 5/24/2010, age 38
1975 ● Anouk Teeuwe → Dutch pop-rock singer, “Nobody’s Wife” (1997)
1984 ● Ezra Koenig → Lead singer and rhythm guitar for indie Afro-pop/rock Vampire Weekend, “Cousins” (Alt Rock #18, 2009)

April 09
1932 ● Carl Perkins → The “King of Rockabilly,” singer, songwriter and guitarist, “Blue Suede Shoes” (#2, 1955), died from throat cancer on 1/19/1998, age 65
1938 ● “Rockin'” Sidney Simien / (Sidney Simien) → Grammy-winning Cajun/swamp blues and zydeco singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, one hit wonder crossover phenomenon “My Toot Toot” (Country #19, 1985), zydeco’s first international hit, died of throat cancer on 2/25/1998, age 59
1943 ● Terry Knight / (Richard Terrance Knapp) → Producer, promote, radio DJ and later manager for hard rock/early heavy metal power trio Grand Funk Railroad, “We’re An American Band” (#1, 1973) and Bloodrock, “D.O.A.” (#76, 1978), died from multiple stab wounds inflicted by his teenage daughter’s boyfriend during an argument on 11/1/2004, age 61
1944 ● Emil Stucchio → Vocals for white harmony group The Classics, “Till Then” (#20, Adult Contemporary #7, 1963)
1946 ● Les Gray / (Thomas Leslie Gray) → Vocals for Brit “good time” glam-rock ‘n’ roll Mud, “Tiger Feet” (UK #1, 1974), died from throat cancer on 2/21/2004, age 57
1948 ● Phillip Wright → Drummer and lead vocals for pop/rock one hit wonder Paper Lace, “The Night Chicago Died” (#1, 1974), a second single “Billy, Don’t Be A Hero” (#96, UK #1, 1974) qualifies them as a two hit wonder in the UK
1948 ● Chico Ryan / (David Allen Ryan) → Vocals for “greaser” revival parody rock-and-doo-wop Sha Na Na (“(Just Like) Romeo And Juliet,” #55, 1975), died on 7/26/1998, age 50
1950 ● Peter Wood → Keyboardist for folk-pop-rock Quiver and The Sutherland Brothers & Quiver (“Arms Of Mary,” #81, UK #5, 1976), later worked with Al Stewart, with whom he co-wrote “Year Of The Cat” (#8, 1977), and Roger Waters of Pink Floyd in the backing band for The Wall concerts in 1980-81, died in December 1994, age 44
1961 ● Mark Kelly → Keyboards for Brit prog-rock revival group Marillion, “Kayleigh” (Mainstream Rock #14, 1985)
1969 ● Kevin Martin → Lead vocals for grunge-rock Candlebox, “Far Behind” (#18, 1994)
1977 ● Gerard Way → Vocals for 00s alt rock/emo band My Chemical Romance, “Welcome To The Black Parade” (#9, 2006)
1978 ● Rachel Stevens → Vocals for pre-fab teen pop S Club 7, “Never Had A Dream Come True” (#10, 2001)
1980 ● Albert L. Hammond, Jr. → Guitarist for early 00s garage rock revival The Strokes, “Juicebox” (Modern Rock #9, 2005)
1987 ● Jesse McCartney → Teen TV actor (All My Children), then dance-pop boy band Dream Street, solo, “Beautiful Soul” (#16, 2006)

April 10
1911 ● Martin Denny → Composer credited with inventing the exotica genre of easy listening lounge music combining Latin, South Pacific and “space age” pop music in rearrangements of popular songs, “Quiet Village” (#4, R&B #11, 1959) from the #1 album Exotica (1959), toured extensively through the early 00s and performed his last concert in Hawaii just three weeks before his death on 3/2/2005, age 93
1921 ● Sheb Wooley / (Shelby F. Wooley) → Country music singer with eight Country Top 40 hits and the novelty-pop hit “The Purple People Eater” (#1, 1958), TV actor (played Pete Nolan in the TV series Rawhide), died of leukemia on 9/16/2003, age 82
1928 ● Rosco Gordon → Memphis blues singer and distinctive piano player with two R&B Top 5 hits in the immediate pre-rock ‘n’ roll days (“Booted,” R&B #1, 1952 and “No More Doggin’,” R&B #2, 1952) and a later crossover hit (“Just A Little Bit,” #64, R&B #2, 1960), his shuffling-style called “Rosco’s Rhythm” has been cited as a building block for Jamaican ska music beginning in the 60s, died of a heart attack on 7/11/2002, age 74
1932 ● Nate Nelson / (Nathaniel Nelson) → Founding member and tenor vocals for sophisticated group harmony R&B/doo wop The Flamingos, “I Only Have Eyes For You”, (#11, R&B #3, 1959), appeared with his bandmates in the rock ‘n’ roll musicals Rock, Rock, Rock (1956) and Go, Johnny, Go! (1959), died from heart disease on 6/1/1984, age 52
1936 ● Bobby Smith / (Robert Smith) → Principal lead vocals for Grammy-winning Motown and later Atlantic R&B/soul The Spinners, “Then Came You” (#1, 1974) plus eleven other Top 20 hits in the 70s, died from pneumonia caused by lung cancer on 3/16/2013, age 76
1940 ● Ricky Valance (David Spencer) / (David Spencer) → Welsh singer, covered “Tell Laura I Love Her” (UK #1, 1960), becoming the first UK #1 by an artist from Wales
1947 ● Bunny Wailer (aka Bunny Livingston) / (Neville O’Reilly Livingston) → Reggae/ska percussionist and singer/songwriter, original member of The Wailers with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, Grammy-winning solo career, named by Newsweek magazine as one of the three most important figures in world music
1947 ● Burke Shelley → Bass guitar and vocals for early and influential Welsh heavy metal band Budgie, “Nude Disintegrating Parachutist Woman” (1971)
1947 ● Karl Russell → Vocals for R&B/soul-disco The Hues Corporation, “Rock The Boat” (#1, 1974), one of the earliest disco hits
1948 ● Fred Smith → Original bassist for New Wave pop-rock Blondie, “Heart Of Glass” (#1, 1979), left in 1975 to replace Richard Hell in punk-rock Television, rejoining Blondie in 1978
1950 ● Eddie Hazel → Lead guitarist for R&B/soul-funk (“P-Funk”) Parliament-Funkadelic, “One Nation Under A Groove” (#31, 1978), his solo is the funk-metal guitar classic on “Maggot Brain” (1971), died of liver failure on 12/23/1992, age 42
1950 ● Ernest Stewart → Rhythm guitar for R&B/soul-disco-funk kings KC & The Sunshine Band, “That’s The Way (I Like It)” (#1, 1975) and five other #1 hits, died on 4/26/1977, age 47
1953 ● Terre Roche → Singer/songwriter in critically-acclaimed but commercially-marginal female folk-pop harmony vocal sister trio The Roches, backed Paul Simon, solo
1957 ● Steve Gustafson → Bassist for folk-pop 10,000 Maniacs, “These Are Days” (Alt-Rock #1, 1992)
1959 ● Babyface / (Kenneth Brian Edmonds) → Urban contemporary R&B singer/songwriter, “When Can I See You” (#4, 1994), writer and producer for Toni Braxton, Bobby Brown, Boyz II Men, Whitney Houston, TLC and others
1959 ● Brian Setzer → Founder and frontman for rockabilly revival The Stray Cats, “Stray Cat Strut” (#9, 1983), then leader of pop-swing revival Brian Setzer Orchestra, “Jump Jive An’ Wail” (Adult Top 40 #14, 1998)
1959 ● Katrina Leskanich → Lead vocals for New Wave pop-rock Katrina And The Waves, “Walking On Sunshine” (#9, 1985) and the Eurovision 1997 contest winner “Love Shine A Light” (UK #3, 1997)
1963 ● Mark Oliver Everett → Guitarist and lead singer for L.A. indie rock Eels, “Novocaine For The Soul” (Modern Rock #1, 1997)
1963 ● Torch DeMartini / (Warren DeMartini) → Lead guitarist for hard rock/glam and hair metal Ratt, “Round And Round” (#12, 1984)
1964 ● Reni Wren / (Alan Wren) → Drummer for Brit guitar pop-rock The Stone Roses, “She Bangs The Drums” (Alt Rock #9, 1989)
1968 ● Kenediid Osman → Bassist for Britpop Sleeper, “Sale Of The Century” (UK #10, 1996)
1970 ● Kenny Lattimore → R&B singer, “For You” (#33, 1997)
1970 ● Mike Mushok → Guitarist for post-grunge/alt metal Staind, “It’s Been A While” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2001)
1970 ● Q-Tip / (Jonathan Davis (aka Kamaal Ibn John Fareed)) → MC in artistic hip hop jazz-rap fusion trio A Tribe Called Quest, “Check The Rhime” (Rap #1, 1991), then Grammy-winning solo career, “Vivrant Thins” (#26, Rap #10, 1999), producer and actor
1975 ● Chris Carrabba → Frontman, lead singer and guitarist for alt rock/emo band Dashboard Confessional, “Stolen” (#44, 2007)
1979 ● Sophie Ellis Bextor → Lead singer for indie-rock Brit-pop Theaudience, then solo, “Murder On The Dancefloor” (UK #2, 2001)
1980 ● Bryce Soderberg → Bassist and vocals for post-grunge pop-rock Lifehouse, “Hanging On A Moment” (Billboard Song of the Year 2001) and “You And Me” (#5, 2005)
1981 ● Liz McClarnon / (Elizabeth Margaret McClarnon) → Vocals for Brit dance-pop vocal trio Atomic Kitten, “Whole Again” (UK #1, 2000)
1983 ● Andrew Dost → Founding member and keyboards for indie pop-rock Fun (“We Are Young,” #1, 2011), co-composed the soundtrack to the comedy drama film The D Train (2015)
1984 ● Mandy Moore → Teen idol pop singer, “I Wanna Be With You” (#24, Top 40 #11, 2000) turned film actress (A Walk To Remember, 2002) and Adult Contemporary singer/songwriter

April 11
1934 ● Cleotha Staples → Eldest sibling in influential R&B/soul-gospel father-daughters quartet The Staple Singers, whose gospel roots and early focus shifted to soul music and non-religious lyrics in the 70s and produced a string of Top 40 hits, including “I’ll Take You There” (#1, 1972), died from complications of Alzheimer’s disease on 2/21/2013, age 78
1935 ● Richard Berry → R&B/ballad and novelty singer/songwriter and backing vocalist, wrote and recorded “Louie Louie” in 1956 (became a #2 hit and subsequent garage rock classic for The Kingsmen in 1962), died from heart failure on 1/23/1997, age 61
1939 ● Freddie Gorman / (Frederick Cortez Gorman) → Versatile Motown Records singer, songwriter and producer in the 60s and 70s, co-wrote “Please Mr. Postman” by The Marvelettes (#1, R&B #1, 1961) and a dozen others, member of session group The Originals which also had string of 70s charting singles, including “The Bells” (#12, R&B #4, 1970) and “Down To Love Town” (#47, Dance/Club #1, 1976), died of lung cancer on 6/13/2006, age 67
1943 ● Tony Victor → Vocals for white harmony group The Classics, “Till Then” (#20, Adult Contemporary #7, 1963)
1946 ● “Whispering Bob” Harris / (Robert Brinley Joseph Harris) → Iconic BBC Radio 2 DJ and TV host, including the long running contemporary music show The Old Grey Whistle Test and current twice-weekly rock music program
1950 ● Tom Hill → Bassist for Brit hard rock/glam-rock Geordie, “All Because Of You” (UK #6, 1973)
1951 ● Paul Fox → Guitarist and lead singer for punk/dub reggae/club and Rock Against Racism-supporting quartet The Ruts, “Babylon’s Burning” (UK #7, 1979), continued with various post-punk and revival bands through to his death from lung cancer on 10/21/2007, age 56
1956 ● Neville Staples → Vocals for 2 Tone Records multiracial ska band The Specials, “Ghost Town” (#1, 1981), left to form New Wave pop Fun Boy 3, “Really Saying Something” (Club #16, UK #5, 1982), frontman for The Neville Staple Band
1958 ● Stuart Adamson / (William Stuart Adamson) → Guitar and vocals for Scottish art-punk-rock The Skids, “Into The Valley,” UK #10, 1979), then for art-folk-rock Big Country, “In A Big Country,” #17, Mainstream Rock #3, UK #17, 1983), suffered from alcoholism and hanged himself in a Honolulu hotel room on 12/16/2001, age 43
1961 ● Doug Hopkins → Co-founder, lead guitarist and chief songwriter for power-pop Gin Blossoms, “Found Out About You” (Modern Rock #1, 1994), committed suicide on 12/5/1993, age 32
1965 ● Nigel Pulsford → Founding member and original lead guitarist for alt-rock Bush, “Glycerine” (Mainstream #4, 1995), left in 2002 to spend time with his family
1966 ● Lisa Stansfield → English singer/songwriter, first as lead vocals for pop-rock Blue Zone UK, “Jackie” (#54, Dance/Club #37, 1988), then solo “All Around The World” (#3, 1989)
1969 ● Cerys Elizabeth Philip Matthews → Vocals for Welsh indie-alt-rock Catatonia, “Mulder And Scully” (UK #3, 1998)
1970 ● Delroy Pearson → Vocals for Brit family R&B/dance-pop quintet 5 Star, “Can’t Wait Another Minute” (#41, Dance/Club #7, 1986) and fifteen Top 40 singles in native England
1970 ● Dylan Keefe → Bass and vocals for one hit wonder post-grunge/indie rock Marcy Playground, “Sex And Candy” (Mainstream Rock #4, 1997)
1971 ● Ollie Riedel / (Oliver Riedel) → Bassist for heavy metal/industrial Kraut rock Rammstein, “Sehnsucht” (Mainstream Rock #20, 1998)
1978 ● Tom Thacker → Guitar and vocals for Canadian indie punk-pop Sum 41, “We’re All To Blame” (Mainstream Rock #36, 2004)
1979 ● Chris Gaylor → Drums and percussion for alt rock/power pop The All-American Rejects, “Swing, Swing” (Modern Rock #8, 2003)
1987 ● Joss Stone / (Jocelyn Eve Stoker) → Blue-eyed Brit R&B/neo-soul singer, released first album at age 16, first hit at 17, “Fell In Love With A Boy” (, 2004), Grammy-winner in 2007 with John Legend and Van Hunt for cover of Sly & The Family Stone‘s “Family Affair”

April 12
1916 ● Russell Garcia → Composer and arranger for NBC Radio, MGM Studios, Warner Bros. and Disney on soundtracks from classic movies (The Time Machine, 1960) to TV shows (Rawhide, 1962), orchestra conductor for Ella Fitzgerald, Mel Tormé, Judy Garland and others, bandleader with the acclaimed, spooky and innovative Fantastica: Music From Out Space (1959), relocated to New Zealand in the 60s and led the country’s national symphony orchestra, died following a fall on 11/19/2011, age 95
1917 ● Helen Forrest / (Helen Fogel) → Extremely popular jazz-swing-pop “girl singer” of the Big Band era, performed with Benny Goodman, Harry James, Nat King Cole, Artie Shaw and as a solo artist, charted dozens of Top 40 singles and seven #1 hits, including “Taking A Chance On Love” (#1, 1943), died from heart failure on 7/11/1999, age 82
1919 ● Billy Vaughn → Saxophonist, orchestra leader and arranger with more Top 40 hits during the early rock ‘n’ roll era than any other orchestra, including “Sail Along Silvery Moon” (#5, 1957), musical director for Dot Records and artists such as Pat Boone and the Fontane Sisters in the 60s and recorded over 30 albums of mainstream instrumental covers, retired in the 80s and died from mesothelioma on 9/26/1991, age 72
1925 ● Prentiss Barnes → Bass vocals and founding member of important 50s R&B/doo wop The Moonglows (“Sincerely,” R&B #1, 1955), received the Pioneer Award from the Rhythm & Blues Foundation in 1995, died in a car accident on 10/1/2006, age 81
1925 ● Ned Miller / (Henry Ned Miller) → Shy, unassuming country crooner and songwriter whose stage fright caused him to stop touring and eventually quit songwriting, but not until he penned 11 charting Country hits for himself, including the huge crossover single “From A Jack To A King” (#6, Country #2, 1962) plus numerous hits for others, including Hank Snow, Gale Storm and Ricky Van Shelton, left the music business in the late 60s and faded into obscurity, died of natural causes on 3/18/2016, age 90
1930 ● Carole Lindsay Young → Vocals for English pop trio The Kaye Sisters, “Ivory Tower” (UK #20, 1956), died 8/20/2006, age 76
1933 ● Tiny Tim / (Herbert Khaury) → Warbling singer and ukulele-strumming, 60s flash-in-the-pan novelty act, “Tiptoe Through The Tulips” (#17, 1968), married Victoria Mae “Miss Vicki” Budinger on Johnny Carson’s The Tonight Show on 1217/1969, died of a heart attack on stage on 11/30/1996, age 63
1940 ● Herbie Hancock / (Herbert Jeffrey Hancock) → Renowned jazz fusion keyboardist with Miles Davis and Chick Corea, solo “Chameleon” (1973), composed film soundtracks
1944 ● John Kay / (Joachim Krauledat) → Guitar, vocals and songwriting for Canadian-American hard rock, proto-metal Steppenwolf, “Born To Be Wild” (#2, 1968)
1948 ● Lois Reeves / (Sandra Delores Reeves) → Joined sister Martha’s Motown R&B/soul-pop group Martha Reeves & The Vandellas in 1967 to replace Betty Kelly, “Jimmy Mack” (#11, R&B #1, 1967)
1949 ● Donald Ray Mitchell → Vocals for eclectic R&B and rock fusion Was (Not Was), “Walk The Dinosaur” (#7, 1989)
1950 ● David Cassidy / (David Bruce Cassidy) → TV, stage and screen actor and singer, portrayed Keith Partridge, the teen idol oldest son of real-life stepmother Shirley Jones, in the pre-fab TV show and sunshine pop group The Partridge Family (“I Think I Love You,” #1, 1970), followed with a 40-year career as an international adult pop music star (“How Can I Be Sure,” #25, AC #3, UK #1, 1972) and TV actor, died from liver failure on 11/21/2017, age 67
1951 ● Alexander Briley → Vocals (and the Army G. I. character) for R&B/disco Village People, “Y.M.C.A.” (#2, 1978)
1954 ● Pat Travers → Canadian bluesy hard rock guitarist, singer and bandleader for the Pat Travers Band, “New Age Music” (Mainstream Rock #33, 1981) and solo
1956 ● Herbert Grönemeyer → German film actor (Das Boot, 1981) and film score composer, now successful pop-rocker, “Mensch” (German #1, 2002)
1957 ● Vince Gill / (Vincent Grant Gill) → Neo-traditionalist country-pop singer/songwriting and guitarist, fronted light country-rock Pure Prairie League (“Amie,” (#27, 1973) from 1978 to 1982, left for a successful solo career with 18 Country Music Assoc. awards, 21 Grammy awards, 16 Country Top 10 albums and 40 charting hits, including “I Still Believe In You” (AC #30, Country #1, 1993), married to singer Amy Grant since 2000
1958 ● Will Sergeant → Guitarist for gloomy post-punk psych-rock Echo & The Bunnymen, “Enlighten Me” (Modern Rock #8, 1990)
1962 ● Art Alexakis → Frontman, guitars, lead vocals and principal songwriter for Northwest post-grunge/punk Everclear, “Wonderful” (#11, Alt Rock #3, 2000)
1964 ● Amy Ray → Guitar and vocals in indie-folk-pop duo Indigo Girls, “Closer To Fine” (#52, Modern Rock #26, 1989)
1965 ● Sean Welch → Bassist for Brit alt pop-rock The Beautiful South, “A Little Time” (UK #1, 1990)
1967 ● Mellow Man Ace / (Ulpiano Sergio Reyes) → Cuban-born rapper and house music singer (“Mentirosa,” #14, 1990), brother of Sen Dog
1967 ● Sarah Cracknell → Frontwoman and lead vocals for indie dance-pop Saint Etienne, “Nothing Can Stop Us” (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1970 ● Nicholas Lofton Hexum → Vocals and rhythm guitar for alt-rock reggae-rap-metal 311, “All Mixed Up” (Modern Rock #4, 1996)
1974 ● Shakir Stewart → Record label executive noted for signing Beyoncé to Hitco Music, Ciara to LaFace Records and Young Jeezy and Rick Ross to Def Jam Records, where he was Executive Vice President until his death from a self-inflicted gun shot wound on 11/1/2008, age 34
1978 ● Guy Berryman → Bassist and backing vocals for Brit-pop/anthem rock Coldplay, “Speed Of Sound” (#8, 2005)
1980 ● Bryan McFadden → Vocals for Irish pop boy band Westlife, “Swear It Again” (#20, 2000) and 17 UK Top 10 hits, now solo and judge on Australia’s Got Talent TV show
1987 ● Brendon Urie → Lead singer, guitar and piano for emo-pop Panic! At The Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (#7, 2006)

April 13
1926 ● Cosimo Matassa / (Cosimo Vincent Matassa) → Early rock ‘n’ roll recording engineer credited with creating the “New Orleans Sound” from his studio near the French Quarter through recordings for Fats Domino (“The Fat Man,” R&B #2, 1950) and Little Richard (“Tutti Frutti,” #17, 1956), and later albums by Ray Charles, Dr. John and others, including 21 gold records, retired in the 80s and died from natural causes on 9/11/2014, age 88
1934 ● Horace Kay → Vocals for R&B/soul The Tams, “What Kind Of Fool (Do You Think I Am)” (#9, 1963)
1936 ● Rashad Feild / (Richard Timothy Feild) → Vocals and guitar with Dusty Springfield and her brother in light folk-pop trio The Springfields, “Silver Threads And Golden Needles” (#20, 1962), now Sufi mystic and spiritual teacher
1940 ● Lester Chambers → Lead vocals, harmonica and percussion for bi-racial psychedelic soul-rock The Chambers Brothers, “Time Has Come Today” (#11, 1968)
1942 ● Bill Conti → Prolific film and TV score composer, best known for the Rocky movie series, wrote and directed “Gonna Fly Now” (#1, 1977), theme song from Rocky, orchestra conductor for the Academy Awards
1943 ● Guy Stevens → Label executive, producer and band manager, early figure at Island Records and the Britbeat and blues scenes in the 60s, managed Procol Harum (“A Whiter Shade Of Pale,” #5, UK #1, 1967) and mentored Mott The Hoople (“All the Young Dudes, #37, UK #3, 1972), produced albums for <strongFree
and Spooky Tooth plus the punk classic London Calling (1978) for The Clash, died from a prescription drug overdose on 8/29/1981, age 38
1944 ● Jack Casady / (John William Casady) → Bassist for 60s psych-rock Jefferson Airplane, “Somebody To Love” (#5, 1967), then folk-rock Hot Tuna
1944 ● Brian Pendleton → Original rhythm guitarist for raunchy R&B/blues-rock British Invasion band The Pretty Things, “Don’t Bring Me Down” (UK #10, 1964), died of lung cancer on 5/15/2001, age 57
1945 ● Lowell George → Singer/songwriter and guitarist, frontman for Southern-fried blues-boogie rock Little Feat, “Dixie Chicken” (1973), solo, died of an accidental drug overdose on 6/29/1979, age 34
1946 ● Al Green / (Albert Greene) → Southern R&B and gospel singer, “Let’s Stay Together” (#1, 1972), #65 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time
1946 ● Roy Loney → Founding member, wild frontman and lead vocals for eclectic rock ‘n’ roll/proto-punk cult band The Flamin’ Groovies, left for mostly quiet solo career in 1971
1948 ● Peter Sweval / (Piet Sweval) → Co-founder and bassist for the band the eventually became one hit wonder pop-rock Looking Glass (“Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl),” #1, 1972), later joined pop/metal Starz (“Cherry Baby,” #33, 1977), died from cancer on 1/23/1990, age 41
1951 ● Max Weinberg → Drummer for Bruce Springsteen‘s E Street Band, frontman for Max Weinberg 7 (house band for TV’s Late Night with Conan O’Brien), author of 1991 book The Big Beat: Conversations with Rock’s Greatest Drummers
1951 ● Peabo Bryson / (Robert Peabo Bryson) → R&B/smooth soul vocalist, duet with Roberta Flack “Tonight I Celebrate My Love” (1983) plus solo, “If Ever You’re In My Arms Again” (#10, 1984)
1954 ● Jimmy Destri / (James Mollica) → Keyboards for New Wave pop-rock Blondie, “Heart Of Glass” (#1, 1979)
1955 ● Louis Johnson → Bass and vocals for R&B/soul-funk The Brothers Johnson, “Strawberry Letter 23” (#, R&B #1, 1977), session musician for renowned producer Quincy Jones, played on Michael Jackson‘s Off the Wall, Thriller and Dangerous albums and recorded five solo LPs of gospel and funk music, died in his Las Vegas home on 5/21/2015
1957 ● Wayne Lewis → Lead singer and keyboards for 80s urban contemporary soul Atlantic Starr, “Always” (#1, 1987)
1961 ● Butch Taylor / (Clarence Frederick Taylor) → Keyboards for pop-funk-rock jam band Dave Matthews Band, “Don’t Drink The Water” (#4, 1998)
1961 ● Hiro Yamamoto → Founding member and original bassist for seminal grunge-rock group Soundgarden, “Black Hole Sun” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1994), left in 1991 to form three piece indie rock/neo psychedelia Truly
1962 ● Hillel Slovak → Guitarist for funk-rock Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Californication” (Modern Rock #1, 2000), died from a heroin overdose 6/25/1988, age 26
1966 ● Marc Ford → Lead guitarist for roots/raunch rock Black Crowes, “Hard To Handle” (Mainstream Rock #1, 1991), solo
1972 ● Aaron Lewis → Vocals for post-grunge/alt metal Staind, “It’s Been A While” (Mainstream Rock #1, 2001)
1975 ● Lou Bega / (David Lubega) → German-born, Italian and Ugandan-descended dance-pop Latino-tinged singer, “Mambo No. 5” (#3, 1999)
1979 ● Tony Lundon → Singer for teen dance-pop Liberty X, “Just A Little” (UK #1, 2002)

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