In Memoriam: Ric Ocasek (1944 – 2019) 12pm

September 16, 2019
Editor In Chief

 

Richard Theodore Otcasek (March 23, 1944 – September 15, 2019), known as Ric Ocasek, was an American singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. He was best known as the lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and songwriter for the rock band the Cars. In 2018, Ocasek was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Cars. Ocasek died Sunday in New York at age 75.

Police said they received a call around 4 p.m. for an unconscious male at a townhouse on East 19th Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Law enforcement sources confirmed the deceased was Ocasek.

Ocasek and his band were inducted into the Rock Hall in 2018. The institution described the band as “hook-savvy with the perfect combo of new wave and classic rock.”

The band had 13 top-40 singles, including radio staples like “Good Times Roll” and “Just What I Needed,” and Ocasek went on to a successful producing career after The Cars broke up in the late 1980s.

He was also known for his long-running marriage to the Czech supermodel Paulina Porizkova. She announced their separation in 2018 after 28 years of marriage.

They listed the 19th Street residence for sale earlier this year for more than $15 million.

Ocasek was married three times. He married early in life, but divorced and was married to his second wife, Suzanne Ocasek, in 1971. Ocasek was still married to Suzanne when he met 18-year-old model Paulina Porizkova during filming of the music video for the Cars’ song “Drive” in 1984. Ocasek and Porizkova were married on August 23, 1989. The couple had two sons, Jonathan Raven Otcasek (b. November 4, 1993), and Oliver Otcasek (b. 1999).

Ocasek had six sons, two from each of his three marriages. His eldest son, Christopher (born 1964), was a singer who formed the rock group Glamour Camp which released one album in 1989. Adam was born in 1970. Eron was born in 1973 and Derek was born in 1981.

He and co-founder of the Cars Benjamin Orr were close friends who became estranged when the band broke up. Their friendship was commemorated in the song “Silver”, which Ocasek wrote as a dedication to Orr upon his death in 2000.

We feature the music of the Cars today at 12pm

In Memoriam: Ric Ocasek (1944 – 2019)

September 15, 2019
Editor In Chief

Richard Theodore Otcasek (March 23, 1944 – September 15, 2019), known as Ric Ocasek, was an American singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. He was best known as the lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and songwriter for the rock band the Cars. In 2018, Ocasek was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Cars. Ocasek died Sunday in New York at age 75.

Police said they received a call around 4 p.m. for an unconscious male at a townhouse on East 19th Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Law enforcement sources confirmed the deceased was Ocasek.

Ocasek and his band were inducted into the Rock Hall in 2018. The institution described the band as “hook-savvy with the perfect combo of new wave and classic rock.”

The band had 13 top-40 singles, including radio staples like “Good Times Roll” and “Just What I Needed,” and Ocasek went on to a successful producing career after The Cars broke up in the late 1980s.

He was also known for his long-running marriage to the Czech supermodel Paulina Porizkova. She announced their separation in 2018 after 28 years of marriage.

They listed the 19th Street residence for sale earlier this year for more than $15 million.

Ocasek was married three times. He married early in life, but divorced and was married to his second wife, Suzanne Ocasek, in 1971. Ocasek was still married to Suzanne when he met 18-year-old model Paulina Porizkova during filming of the music video for the Cars’ song “Drive” in 1984. Ocasek and Porizkova were married on August 23, 1989. The couple had two sons, Jonathan Raven Otcasek (b. November 4, 1993), and Oliver Otcasek (b. 1999).

Ocasek had six sons, two from each of his three marriages. His eldest son, Christopher (born 1964), was a singer who formed the rock group Glamour Camp which released one album in 1989. Adam was born in 1970. Eron was born in 1973 and Derek was born in 1981.

He and co-founder of the Cars Benjamin Orr were close friends who became estranged when the band broke up. Their friendship was commemorated in the song “Silver”, which Ocasek wrote as a dedication to Orr upon his death in 2000.

In Memoriam: Eddie Money

September 13, 2019
Editor In Chief

Edward Joseph Mahoney (March 21, 1949 – September 13, 2019), known professionally as Eddie Money, was an American singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who had success in the 1970s and 1980s with a string of Top 40 hits and platinum albums. Money is well known for songs like “Baby Hold On”, “Two Tickets to Paradise”, “Think I’m in Love”, “Shakin'”, “Take Me Home Tonight”, “I Wanna Go Back”, “Walk on Water”, and “The Love in Your Eyes”.

Money married his wife Laurie in 1989. They had five children: Zachary, Jessica, Joseph, Julian, and Desmond. He “made his home” in the Bay Area and performed often in San Francisco’s clubs.

Money joined a 12-step program in 2001. Of his addiction, he has said that he came to the realization that he did not need drugs or alcohol for his “quick wit”.

On August 24, 2019, Money, a long-time smoker, revealed that he had been diagnosed with stage 4 esophageal cancer. He died from the disease on September 13, 2019, at age 70. The family statement read in part, “It is with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to our loving husband and father. We cannot imagine our world without him. We are grateful that he will live on forever through his music.”

We feature the music of Eddie Money at 12pm today.

Thursday 10pm: In Memoriam: Dr. John (1941 – 2019)

June 6, 2019
Editor In Chief

Malcolm John Rebennack (November 20, 1941 – June 6, 2019), better known by his stage name Dr. John, was an American singer and songwriter. His music combines blues, pop, jazz, boogie woogie and rock and roll.

Active as a session musician since the late 1950s, he gained a following in the late 1960s after the release of his album Gris-Gris and his appearance at the Bath Festival of Blues and Progressive Music. He performed a lively, theatrical stage show inspired by medicine shows, Mardi Gras costumes and voodoo ceremonies. Rebennack recorded more than 20 albums and in 1973 produced a top-10 hit, “Right Place, Wrong Time”.

The winner of six Grammy Awards, Rebennack was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame by singer John Legend in March 2011. In May 2013, Rebennack received an honorary doctorate of fine arts from Tulane University.

For more extensive information – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dr._John

We celebrate the career of Dr. John 10pm on RadioMaxMusic.

In Memorium: Leon Redbone (1949 – 2019)

May 30, 2019
Editor In Chief

Leon Redbone (born Dickran Gobalian, August 26, 1949 – May 30, 2019) was a singer-songwriter, guitarist, actor and voice actor specializing in jazz, blues, and Tin Pan Alley classics. Recognized by his Panama hat, dark sunglasses, and black tie, Redbone was born in Cyprus of Armenian ancestry, and first appeared on stage in Toronto, Canada in the early 1970s. He also appeared on film and television in acting and voice-over roles.

Redbone’s concerts made use of performance, comedy, and skilled instrumentals. Recurrent gags involved the influence of alcohol and claiming to have written works originating well before he was born – Redbone favored material from the Tin Pan Alley era, circa 1890s to 1910. He sang the theme to the 1980s television series Mr. Belvedere and released sixteen albums.

Redbone passed away in the early morning of May 30, 2019

http://radiomaxmusic.com/redbone.html

Great Soul Performances On-Demand Special

May 30, 2019
Editor In Chief

On May 15th, we lost one the suavest, coolest, most debonair bass singer in our business, Chuck Barksdale founding member of the Mighty Dells.

We have created a special Great Soul Performances edition featuring our salute to Chuck and the Dells with as many of their songs as we can get in; keeping in mind that they recorded in five decades, so you won’t hear them all, but a goodly amount.

Also you’ll hear the Dells in their own words from an interview I did with Chuck Barksdale, Marvin Junior and Mickey McGill, recorded back when I was at WWRL in New York, several decades ago. All aspects of their career will be covered from Doo Wop, Soul, Jazz, Smooth R&B and several songs they sang on as background singers.

–Bobby Jay

Click Here for the
podcast page

 

The Dells grew up in Harvey, Illinois and began singing together while attending Thornton Township High School. Forming in 1952 under the name the El-Rays, the group initially consisted of Marvin Junior, Mickey McGill, Lucius McGill, Verne Allison, Chuck Barksdale, and Johnny Funches. Lucius soon left the group and the remaining quintet signed with Checker Records, releasing their first single, “Darling I Know,” which flopped.

In 1955, the group renamed themselves the Dells and signed with Vee-Jay Records. In 1956, they recorded their first hit, “Oh, What a Night” (a song co-written by Johnny Funches, who also sang lead on the recording alongside Marvin Junior), which hit the Top 5 of the R&B singles chart. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. The song is ranked #260 on the Rolling Stone magazine’s list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. In November 1958, the Dells suffered a car accident that left McGill in a hospital in Ohio for six months. The group temporarily disbanded and Barksdale sang as a member of Harvey Fuqua’s spinoff Moonglows act, Harvey and the Moonglows, which included a young Marvin Gaye. In 1961, the Dells reunited and auditioned for Dinah Washington. After Washington agreed to hire them, Johnny Funches left the group to take care of his family. Funches was replaced by Flamingos founding member Johnny Carter and sang background for Washington for two years. In 1966, they were hired to open for Ray Charles, only to be fired after a performance resulted in several standing ovations. The group would also sing background for Barbara Lewis, mainly on Lewis’ 1963 hit, “Hello Stranger”, while also working with Quincy Jones, who helped to fine-tune their vocals for standards and jazz material.

Thursday 11am: In Memoriam – Earl Thomas Conley (1941 – 2019)

April 11, 2019
Editor In Chief

Earl Thomas Conley (October 17, 1941 – April 10, 2019) was an American country music singer-songwriter. Between 1980 and 2003, he recorded ten studio albums, including seven for the RCA Records label. In the 1980s and into the 1990s, Conley also charted more than 30 singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts, of which 18 reached Number One. Conley’s 18 Billboard Number One country singles during the 1980s marked the most Number One hits by any artist in any genre during that decade except for Alabama and Ronnie Milsap.

Throughout his career, Conley’s music has been referred to as “thinking man’s country.” This is because the narrator looks into the heart and soul of his characters in each song.

Conley was born in Portsmouth, Ohio, and when he was 14, his father lost his job with the railroad, forcing the young boy to move in with his older sister in Jamestown, Ohio. He was offered a scholarship to an art school, but rejected it in favor of joining the U.S. Army. While in the Army, Conley became a member of a Christian-influenced trio, where his musical talent and vocal ability first began.

Conley then decided to consider performing as a serious career option. He shifted more deeply into the classic country sounds of artists such as Merle Haggard and George Jones. During this period he first tried his hand at songwriting.

In 1968, after his discharge from the Army, Conley began commuting from Dayton to Nashville. In 1973 while in Nashville, Conley met Dick Heard, who produced country music singer Mel Street. This meeting eventually led to the Conley-Heard collaboration on the song “Smokey Mountain Memories,” which made the top 10 for Street. After being honorably discharged from the military, he began playing in clubs in Nashville, Tennessee, at night, supporting himself working blue-collar jobs during the day.

Feeling that he wasn’t making any progress in Nashville, Conley moved to Huntsville, Alabama, to work in a steel mill. There, he met record producer Nelson Larkin, who helped him sign with independent record label GRT in 1974. Conley released four singles on that label, none of which became large hits. At the same time, he was selling songs that he had written to other artists, including Conway Twitty and Mel Street, who were having much success with them.

Conley returned to Nashville, now writing for Nelson Larkin’s publishing house. In 1979, he signed a recording contract with Warner Bros. Records. Two years later, he had his first Top 40 hit, “Dreamin’s All I Do”. He left the label in 1979 and joined Sunbird Records, where he again worked with Nelson Larkin.

This time, Conley found success, with a Top Ten and a Number One single within the next two years. He continued to have success over the next few years, and in 1983, he was nominated for multiple Grammy Awards for his song “Holding Her and Loving You”. He set a record the following year as the first artist in any genre to have four Number One singles from the same album.

In 1986, Conley was credited with breaking down country music barriers when he duet with pop/R&B singer Anita Pointer of the Grammy-winning Pointer Sisters. Their single, “Too Many Times,” the title track to Conley’s 1986 album, reached #2 on the Country charts.

By the end of the 1980s, Conley began collaborating with Randy Scruggs (son of country singer Earl Scruggs), in the hopes that he could bring his music back to his country roots. His record sales began to drop in the 1990s, as country took a more, progressive turn, and Conley was dropped from his record label in 1992.

He took a seven-year recording hiatus between 1991 and 1997 due to a number of factors, including vocal problems, disenchantment with record label politics, road fatigue, and mental burnout. He began recording again in 1998. In late 2013, Conley gave a telephone interview with Pods o’ Pop. Conley recalls that he may be the only country artist to appear on the Soul Train television program (he performed his duet with Pointer) and goes into detail about the string of hits Randy Scruggs and he co-wrote.

In 2002, Blake Shelton charted in the Top 20 with “All Over Me,” which Conley co-wrote with Shelton and longtime friend, songwriter Michael Pyle.

Earl died on April 10, 2019, at 77 years old from complications of dementia – Wikipedia

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