"Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right, here I am. Stuck in the Middle with You" Who doesn't love that song. While "Reservoir Dogs" is one of my personal faves. This song is forever linked to Vic Vega "Mr. Blonde" performing the ear-ectomy on Officer Nash
The summer of '78 will always the summer of "Baker Street". That saxophone riff screaming from every car radio as we sat in traffic on 17, on our way to Santa Cruz for some fun in the sun. "Baker Street" provided a welcome respite from the non-stop grooves of "Saturday Night Fever" and the
Gerry was 63.
Kirshner came up in the business as a publisher, working with the Brill Building songwriting stars Carole King, Neil Diamond and Neil Sedaka. He became the president of three record labels, bringing us among many others, The Archies, Kansas and The Monkees.
Don Kirshner's "Rock Concert" was the real deal. Live, late night, rock and roll music in long form. I remember seeing The Stones, AWB, Bad Company, Golden Earring, Rory Gallagher, Bowie, ELO, T. Rex, Wishbone Ash and many many more. The music came from all spheres which made RC a great discovery place.
Kirshner was dead pan. While he may have been a great publisher and producer he lacked the stage presence of a presenter. You may remember Paul Shaffer doing a pretty good impersonation of Kirshner on SNL as he introduced America to The Blues Brothers.
Don was 73
Gladys is on the left
The Marvelettes brought us "Please Mr. Postman", Beechwood 4-5789" and "Too Many Fish In The Sea"
Gladys was 65
A blues guitarist from Belfast, Moore played with Skid Row, Thin Lizzy, B.B. King, Albert King, George Harrison and Greg Lake from ELP.
He has been cited as influential to the careers and playing styles of Slash, Joe Bonamassa, Zakk Wylde, Randy Rhoads and Kirk Hammet.
Moore himself was heavily influenced by his friend and mentor Peter Green of Fleetwood Mac. Moore played Green's gold Les Paul for years in tribute to his hero.
Gary was 58
Sir George Shearing was born blind. He grew up in Battersea, London playing accordion and piano in the pubs around town. He moved to America in the late '40s and began collaborating with a wide variety of jazz musicians, eventually forming the George Shearing Quintet.
He became known for a piano technique referred to as "Shearing's voicing", a type of double melody block chord, with an additional fifth part that doubles the melody an octave lower.
Late in life he split his time between the U.S. and the U.K., touring with Mel Torme and the BBC orchestra.
Shearing is best known for his original compositions "September in the Rain" and "Lullaby of Birdland"
George was 91
Joe Morello was a jazz drummer best known for his 12½-year stint with Dave Brubeck. He was noted for playing in the unusual time signatures in such pieces such as "Take Five" and "Blue Rondo a la Turk". Brubeck’s group reached new heights with Morello on drums.
Morello played violin in his early years. At the age of 15 Morello met the violinist Jascha Heifitz and decided that he would never be able to equal Heifetz's "sound", so switched to drumming.
Morello appeared on over 120 albums, 60 of which were with the Dave Brubeck Quartet. He authored several drum books, including Master Studies, and also made instructional videos. Morello was the recipient of many awards, including Playboy magazine's best drummer award for seven years in a row, and Down Beat magazine's best drummer award five years in a row. He was elected to the Modern Drummer magazine Hall of Fame in 1988.
Joe was 82
Owsley "Bear" Stanley
Owsley Stanley a.k.a. Bear was linked with the Grateful Dead and was a personality in the development of the San Francisco Bay counter-culture. He hung with Kesey's Merry Pranksters and was pivotal to the explosion of 1960's psychedelic culture.
He became best known under the name of 'Owsley'- the LSD "cook". Under the professional name of Bear he is recognized as an iconic producer, engineer & artist.
Bear frequently recorded live tapes behind his mixing board, and was pivotal in "The Dead" becoming the first performers since Les Paul to custom-develop high-fidelity components and sound-systems for performance needs. Soon "Dead tours" had evolved around gigantic "Wall of Sound" stacks of equipment. His innovations made it possible for Dead fans to enjoy the full sonic range of the concert beyond the confines of commercial venues.
Stanley was the first private individual to manufacture mass quantities of LSD. Between 1965 and 1967, Stanley produced more than 1.25 million doses of LSD. The "Owsley" trademark became associated with inexpensive, generously-portioned LSD of reliable professional quality- and thus for "good trips".
Bear was 76
"Pinetop" Perkins was a boogie-woogie piano player who worked in Muddy Water's great band and was among the last surviving members of the first generation of Delta bluesmen.
Perkins’s accomplishments were numerous. His longevity as a performer was remarkable — all the more so considering his fondness for cigarettes and booze; by his own account he began smoking at age 9 and didn’t quit drinking until he was 82. Few people working in any popular art form have been as prolific in the ninth and tenth decades of their lives.
Perkins didn't release an album under his own name until his 75th year. From then until his death he made more than a dozen records on which he was the leader. His last album, released in 2010, was “Joined at the Hip”, a collaboration with the harmonica player Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, which won a Grammy this year as best traditional blues album.
In 2000 he received a National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts. He was given a Grammy for lifetime achievement in 2005. "Born in Honey", a documentary about Mr. Perkins’s life, was released in 2007.
Pinetop was 97
Poly Strene was the stage name of Marianne Joan Elliot-Said, a musician, songwriter and singer, with the pioneering punk band X-Ray Spex. After seeing the Sex Pistols perform on her birthday in 1975, she was inspired to form X-Ray Spex.
Poly was 53
She was described by The New York Times as a "contralto grounded in a bluesy growl and capable of sweeping over four octaves."
Best known for her song "Poetry Man", her stage name is a fictional advertising character created in the early 1900s for the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad: Phoebe Snow was a young woman who appeared dressed all in white. Also, a DL&W passenger train called the Phoebe Snow ran from Hoboken to Buffalo between 1949-1960.
Snow was briefly married to Phil Kearns, and in December 1975 she gave birth to a severely mentally impaired daughter, Valerie Rose. Snow resolved not to institutionalize Valerie, and cared for her at home until Valerie died on March 18, 2007 at the age of 31. Snow's efforts to care for Valerie nearly ended her career.
Phoebe was 60
Amy Jade Winehouse was a singer-songwriter known for her powerful deep vocals and her eclectic mix of musical genres.
Winehouse's 2003 debut album, Frank, was critically successful in the UK and was nominated for the Mercury Prize. Her 2006 follow-up album, Back to Black, led to six Grammy Award nominations and five wins, tying the then record for the most wins by a female artist in a single night, and made Winehouse the first British female to win five Grammys, including three of the "Big Four": Best New Artist, Record of the Year and Song of the Year.
She released just two albums, but those two record are filled to the brim with soul and sex and swing. It's difficult to see such a talent get lost in drugs, booze and mental illness.
Ronnie Spector—who, it could be argued, all but invented Winehouse's style in the first place when she took the stage at the Brooklyn Fox Theater with her fellow Ronettes more than 40 years ago—was so taken aback at a picture of Winehouse in the New York Post that she exclaimed, "I don't know her, I never met her, and when I saw that pic, I thought, 'That's me!'
Winehouse died of alcohol poisoning on 23 July 2011. Her album Back to Black subsequently became the UK's best selling album so far in the 21st century.
Amy was 27
In 1980, Grant filed suit against Cash for wrongful dismissal and for embezzlement of retirement funds. A lawsuit against Cash for slander was also considered. In coincidental action, Luther Perkins' daughters from his first marriage filed suit against Cash for embezzlement of retirement funds. Both lawsuits were eventually settled out-of-court.
Despite the bitter legal battles, the two men later reconciled. Grant contends that he was probably Cash's closest and most trusted friend; indeed, he played a critical role in helping Cash along when Cash's drug problems threatened his career and his life. Grant made a final appearance onstage with Cash in 1999 as an original member of The Tennessee Two.
Marshall was 83
Heavy D & the Boyz were the first group signed to Uptown Records, with Heavy D as the frontman and only rapper, and the other three members were dancers. Their debut, Living Large, was released in 1987. The album was a commercial success; Big Tyme was a breakthrough that included four hits.
Heavy D gained even more fame by singing the theme song for the television program In Living Color and also MADtv. Heavy D performed the rap on Michael Jackson's hit single "Jam" as well as sister Janet Jackson's hit single "Alright".
In 1997, Heavy D collaborated with B.B. King on his duets album Deuces Wild rapping in the song "Keep It Coming." Heavy D was referred to in the song "Juicy" by the Notorious B.I.G., and appeared in his music video for "One More Chance".
In the mid-1990s, Heavy D became the first rapper to head a major music label, when he became the president of Uptown Records. Myers helped to develop Mary J. Blige's career and hired Sean “Diddy” Combs as an intern. During this time, Myers also developed the R&B boy band Soul for Real, and was the executive producer and principal writer of several songs on the group's breakout album, 'Candy Rain'. He later became the senior vice president at Universal Music.
D was 44