Tag: In Memoriam

In Memoriam: Ray Sawyer (1937 – 2018)

Ray Sawyer (February 1, 1937 – December 31, 2018) was an American singer and vocalist with the 1970s rock band, Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show. Though primarily a backing vocalist and occasional percussionist on congas or maracas, he sang lead on their hit song “The Cover of Rolling Stone” and was a recognisable presence in the band owing to the eyepatch and cowboy hat he wore. He was also the uncle of the vocalist of Wild Fire, Zack Sawyer.

Sawyer lost his right eye in a 1967 automobile accident. He said the following about his life around the time of his accident: “I must have played all the clubs from Houston to Charleston until I decided I was going insane from too much beans and music, and I gave it up. I saw a John Wayne movie and proceeded to Portland, Oregon, to be a logger complete with plaid shirt, caulk boots, and pike pole. On the way my car slipped on the road and the accident left me with the eye patch I now wear. When I recovered I ran straight back to the beans and music and vowed, ‘here I’ll stay’.” Dr. Hook had many hit singles such as “Sylvia’s Mother”, “The Cover of Rolling Stone”, “A Little Bit More”, “Only Sixteen”, “Walk Right In”, “Sharing the Night Together”, “When You’re in Love with a Beautiful Woman”, “Better Love Next Time”, “Sexy Eyes”, “Girl Can Get It”, and “Baby Makes Her Bluejeans Talk”.

From 1988 to October 2015, Sawyer toured the nostalgia circuit as “Dr. Hook featuring Ray Sawyer,” under license from bandmate Dennis Locorriere, who tours separately and owns the Dr. Hook trademark. Sawyer retired in 2015 and died after a short illness, aged 81.

In Memoriam: Nancy Wilson (1937 – 2018)

Nancy Sue Wilson (February 20, 1937 – December 13, 2018) was an American singer whose career spanned over five decades, from the mid–1950s until her retirement in the early–2010s. She was notable for her single “(You Don’t Know) How Glad I Am” and her version of the standard “Guess Who I Saw Today”.

Wilson recorded more than 70 albums and won three Grammy Awards for her work. During her performing career Wilson was labeled a singer of blues, jazz, R&B, pop, and soul, a “consummate actress”, and “the complete entertainer”. The title she preferred, however, was “song stylist”. She received many nicknames including “Sweet Nancy”, “The Baby”, “Fancy Miss Nancy” and “The Girl With the Honey-Coated Voice”.

Wilson married her first husband, drummer Kenny Dennis, in 1960. In 1963, their son, Kenneth (Kacy) Dennis Jr., was born, and by 1970, they divorced. On May 22, 1973, she married a Presbyterian minister, Reverend Wiley Burton. She gave birth to Samantha Burton in 1975, and the couple adopted Sheryl Burton in 1976. As a result of her marriage, she abstained from performing in various venues, such as supper clubs. For the following two decades, she successfully juggled her personal life and her career. In November 1998, both of her parents died; she calls this year the most difficult of her life.

In August 2006, Wilson was hospitalized with anemia and potassium deficiency, and was on I.V. sustenance while undergoing a complete battery of tests. She was unable to attend the UNCF Evening of Stars Tribute to Aretha Franklin and had to cancel the engagement. All of her other engagements were on hold pending doctors’ reports.

In March 2008, she was hospitalized for lung complications, recovered, and claimed to be doing well. In the same year, her husband, Wiley Burton, died after suffering from renal cancer.

On December 13, 2018, Wilson died at her home in Pioneertown, California after a long illness. She was 81 years old.

In 1964, Wilson won her first Grammy Award for the best rhythm and blues recording for the album How Glad I Am. She was featured as a “grand diva” of jazz in a 1992 edition of Essence. In the same year, she also received the Whitney Young Jr. Award from the Urban League. In 1998, she was a recipient of the Playboy Reader Poll Award for best jazz vocalist.

In 1986, she was dubbed the Global Entertainer of the Year by the World Conference of Mayors. She received an award from the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change in 1993; the NAACP Image Award – Hall of Fame Award in 1998, and was inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1999. She received the Trumpet Award for Outstanding Achievement in 1994. Wilson received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1990, at 6541 Hollywood Blvd. She received honorary degrees from Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA and Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio. She is also a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority. Wilson has a street named after her in her hometown of Chillicothe, Ohio. She co-founded the Nancy Wilson Foundation, which exposes inner-city children to the country. Wilson was the recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), NEA Jazz Masters Fellowships award in 2004, the highest honors that the United States government bestows upon jazz musicians. In 2005 she received the NAACP Image Awards for Best Recording Jazz Artist. She received the 2005 UNCF Trumpet Award celebrating African-American achievement, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the NAACP in Chicago, and Oprah Winfrey’s Legends Award.

In September 2005, Wilson was inducted into the International Civil Rights Walk of Fame at the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site. Wilson was a major figure in Civil Rights Movement. Wilson said, “This award means more to me than anything else I have ever received.” Times.com, August 20, 2006: “It’s been a long career for the polished Wilson, whose first albums appeared in the 1960s, and she faces that truth head-on in such numbers as ‘These Golden Years’ and ‘I Don’t Remember Ever Growing Up’. Shorter breathed these days, she can still summon a warm, rich sound and vividly tell a song’s story. With a big band behind her in ‘Taking a Chance on Love’, she also shows there’s plenty of fire in her autumnal mood”. At the Hollywood Bowl, August 29, 2007, Wilson celebrated her 70th birthday with an all-star event hosted by Arsenio Hall. Ramsey Lewis and his trio performed “To Know Her Is To Love Her”. – Wikipedia

In Memoriam: Roy Clark (April 1933 – November 2018)

Country legend Roy Clark is seen performing in this undated photo. Clark, who was a star on the popular syndicated country music variety show “Hee Haw”, died at his home in Tulsa. (WikiMedia)

Roy Linwood Clark (April 15, 1933 – November 15, 2018) was an American singer and musician. He is best known for having hosted Hee Haw, a nationally televised country variety show, from 1969 to 1997. Clark was an important and influential figure in country music, both as a performer and helping to popularize the genre.

During the 1970s, Clark frequently guest-hosted for Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show and enjoyed a 30-million viewership for Hee Haw. Clark was highly regarded and renowned as a guitarist and banjo player, skilled in the traditions of many genres, including classical guitar, country music, Latin music, bluegrass, and pop. He had hit songs as a pop vocalist (e.g., “Yesterday, When I Was Young” and “Thank God and Greyhound”), and his instrumental skill had an enormous effect on generations of bluegrass and country musicians. He became a member of the Grand Ole Opry in 1987, and, in 2009, was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He published his autobiography, My Life in Spite of Myself, in 1994.

Clark married Barbara Joyce Rupard on August 31, 1957, and they had four children. He made his home in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where Roy Clark Elementary School was named in his honor in 1978.

Clark died on November 15, 2018, at 85 at his Tulsa home due to complications of pneumonia. – Wikipedia

In Memoriam: Marty Balin (1942 – 2018)

Marty Balin born Martyn Jerel Buchwald; January 30, 1942 – September 27, 2018 was an American singer, songwriter, and musician best known as the founder and one of the lead singers of Jefferson Airplane and Jefferson Starship.

Balin was the primary founder of Jefferson Airplane, which he “launched” from a restaurant-turned-club he called the Matrix, and also one of its lead vocalists from 1965 to 1971. In the group’s famous 1966-1971 iteration, Balin served as co-lead vocalist alongside Grace Slick and rhythm guitarist Paul Kantner. While his output diminished after Surrealistic Pillow (1967) as Slick, Kantner, and lead guitarist Jorma Kaukonen matured as songwriters (a process compounded by Balin’s eschewal of the group’s burgeoning “ego trips”), his most enduring songwriting contributions—which were often imbued with a romantic, pop-oriented lilt that was atypical of the band’s characteristic forays into psychedelic rock—include “Comin’ Back to Me” (a folk rock ballad later covered by Ritchie Havens and Rickie Lee Jones), “Today” (a collaboration with Kantner initially written on spec for Tony Bennett that was prominently covered by Tom Scott), and again with Kantner, the topical 1969 top-100 hit “Volunteers.” Although uncharacteristic of his oeuvre, the uptempo “3/5 of a Mile in 10 Seconds” and “Plastic Fantastic Lover” (both written for Surrealistic Pillow) remained integral components of the Airplane’s live set throughout the late 1960s. – Wikipedia

Read More at Rolling Stone Magazine

In Memoriam: Aretha Franklin (1942 – 2018)

Aretha Louise Franklin (March 25, 1942 – August 16, 2018) was an American singer and songwriter. Franklin began her career as a child singing gospel at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, where her father, C. L. Franklin, was minister. In 1960, at the age of 18, she embarked on a secular career, recording for Columbia Records but only achieving modest success. Following her signing to Atlantic Records in 1967, Franklin achieved commercial acclaim and success with songs such as “Respect”, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman”, “Spanish Harlem” and “Think”. By the end of the 1960s she had gained the title “The Queen of Soul”.

Franklin eventually recorded a total of 112 charted singles on Billboard, including 77 Hot 100 entries, 17 top ten pop singles, 100 R&B entries and 20 number-one R&B singles, becoming the most charted female artist in the chart’s history.

Franklin also recorded acclaimed albums such as I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You, Lady Soul, Young, Gifted and Black and Amazing Grace before experiencing problems with her record company by the mid-1970s. After her father was shot in 1979, Franklin left Atlantic and signed with Arista Records, finding success with her part in the 1980 film The Blues Brothers and with the albums Jump to It (1982) and Who’s Zoomin’ Who? (1985).

In 1998, Franklin won international acclaim for singing the opera aria “Nessun dorma”, at the Grammys of that year replacing Luciano Pavarotti. Later that same year, she scored her final Top 40 recording with “A Rose Is Still a Rose”.

Franklin’s other popular and well known hits include “Rock Steady”, “Jump to It”, “Freeway of Love”, “Who’s Zoomin’ Who”, “Chain Of Fools”, “Until You Come Back to Me (That’s What I’m Gonna Do)”, “Something He Can Feel”, “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)” (with George Michael), and a remake of The Rolling Stones song “Jumpin’ Jack Flash”.

Franklin has won a total of 18 Grammy Awards and is one of the best-selling musical artists of all time, having sold over 75 million records worldwide.

Franklin has been honored throughout her career including a 1987 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, in which she became the first female performer to be inducted. She was inducted to the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. In August 2012, Franklin was inducted into the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame.

Franklin is listed in at least two all-time lists on Rolling Stone magazine, including the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, and the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time. She died at home August 16, 2018, her publicist confirmed. – Wikipedia

In Memoriam: Yvonne Staples (1938 – 2018)

Yvonne Staples, whose baritone helped propel the Staple Singers to the top of the music charts and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999, has died at home in South Shore at 80, according to Chicago’s Leak & Sons Funeral Home.

RadioMaxMusic will feature the music of the Staple Singers at 8pm ET

Ms. Staples performed on hits including “Respect Yourself,” “I’ll Take You There” and “Heavy Makes You Happy” with her sisters Mavis and Cleotha and their father, guitarist Roebuck “Pops” Staples.

She was born in Chicago to Pops and Oceola Staples, both with Mississippi roots. She started singing with Mavis and their brother Pervis in the 1940s at their uncle’s church.  For more on this story click here

The Staple Singers were an American gospel, soul and R&B singing group. Roebuck “Pops” Staples (1914–2000), the patriarch of the family, formed the group with his children Cleotha (1934–2013), Pervis (b. 1935), and Mavis (b. 1939). Yvonne (1936–2018) replaced her brother when he was drafted into the U.S. Army, and again in 1970. They are best known for their 1970s hits “Respect Yourself”, “I’ll Take You There”, “If You’re Ready (Come Go with Me)”, and “Let’s Do It Again”, which with one exception (“I’ll Take You There”) peaked on the Hot 100 within a week from Christmas Day. While the family name is Staples, the group used “Staple” commercially. – Wikipedia

In Memoriam: Daryle Singletary (1971 – 2018)

Daryle Bruce Singletary (March 10, 1971 – February 12, 2018) was an American country music singer. Between 1995 and 1998, he recorded for Giant Records, for which he released three studio albums: Daryle Singletary in 1995, All Because of You in 1996 and Ain’t It the Truth in 1998. In the same timespan, Singletary entered the top 40 of the Hot Country Songs charts five times, reaching number two with “I Let Her Lie” and “Amen Kind of Love”, and number four with “Too Much Fun”.

In 2000, Singletary switched to Audium Entertainment (a division of Koch Entertainment), where he released the albums Now and Again (2000) and That’s Why I Sing This Way (2002), both of which were largely composed of cover songs. A third album of covers, 2007’s Straight from the Heart, was issued on the independent Shanachie Records label. He returned to Jack Noseworthy Studios (now renamed E1 Music) in 2010, to release Rockin’ in the Country.

Singletary died from an apparent blood clot at his Lebanon, Tennessee, home on the morning of February 12, 2018, according to a Taste of Country report. – Wikipedia

Daryle Singletary Dies

In Memoriam: Vic Damone (1928 – 2018)

Vic Damone (born Vito Rocco Farinola; June 12, 1928 – February 11, 2018) was an American traditional pop and big band singer, songwriter, actor, radio and television presenter, and entertainer who is best known for songs such as “You’re Breaking My Heart” (a number one hit), the number four hit “On the Street Where You Live” (from My Fair Lady), and “My Heart Cries for You” (also No. 4).

Vic Damone Dies At 89

In Memoriam: Dennis Edwards (1943 – 2018)

Photo by John Salangsang/Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock (9195855t)Dennis Edwards (February 3, 1943 – February 2, 2018) was an American soul and R&B singer, notably a lead singer in The Temptations, on Motown Records. Edwards joined the Temptations in 1968, replacing David Ruffin and sang with the group from 1968 to 1976, 1980 to 1984 and 1987 to 1989. In the mid-1980s, he attempted a solo career, scoring a hit in 1984 with “Don’t Look Any Further” (featuring Siedah Garrett). Until his death, Dennis was the lead singer of The Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards, a Temptations splinter group.

Edwards was born in Fairfield, Alabama, about eight miles from Birmingham, to Reverend and Mrs. Dennis Edwards Sr., He began singing as a toddler, just two years old, in his father’s church. The Edwards family moved to Detroit, Michigan when Edwards was about ten years old, and Edwards would continue to sing in the church pastored by his father, eventually becoming choir director.

As a teenager, Edwards joined a gospel vocal group called The Mighty Clouds of Joy, and studied music at the Detroit Conservatory of Music. He was not allowed to sing or listen to secular music at home, and his mother disapproved when he began pursuit of a career singing rhythm and blues music. In 1961 he organized his own soul/jazz group, Dennis Edwards and the Fireballs. In 1961, Edwards recorded a single for the obscure Detroit label, International Soulville Records, “I Didn’t Have to (But I Did)” b/w “Johnnie on the Spot”.

Following time served in the US military, in 1966 Edwards auditioned for Detroit’s Motown Records, where he was signed but placed on retainer. Later that year, he was assigned to join The Contours after their lead singer fell ill. In 1967, the Contours were the opening act for several Temptations concerts, and Temptations members Eddie Kendricks and Otis Williams – who were considering replacing their own lead singer, David Ruffin (who was a personal friend of Edwards), took notice of Edwards and made his acquaintance.

Edwards died on February 2, 2018, one day prior to his 75th birthday, in a Chicago hospital after a long illness, the singer’s manager confirmed to ABC News. – Wikipedia

In Memoriam: Dave Holland (1948 – 2018)

David Holland (5 April 1948 – 16 January 2018) was an English rock drummer born in Northampton England, best remembered for his stints with Trapeze from 1969 to 1979 and Judas Priest from 1979 to 1989.

On 18 January 2018, management of Trapeze confirmed that Holland, who was “a very private person”, had died “a few days ago”, with no cause of death reported. Initially, his death was reported to be a hoax, when Judas Priest fans confused him with a jazz musician named Dave Holland.

On 22 January 2018, Spanish newspaper El Progreso reported that Holland had died six days earlier at Hospital Universitario Lucus Augusti in Lugo, Spain, a hospital close to A Fonsagrada, a town in the mountains where the drummer had lived at the time of his death. No cause of death was revealed, but the newspaper stated that he was already cremated. – Wikipedia

Billboard Obit

In Memoriam: Lari White (1965 – 2018)

Lari Michele White (May 13, 1965 – January 23, 2018) was an American country music artist and actress. She first gained national attention in 1988 as a winner on You Can Be a Star, a talent competition which aired on The Nashville Network. A recording contract with RCA Records Nashville followed a year later, producing three studio albums, a greatest hits package, and several chart singles, with three of her singles having reached Top Ten: “That’s My Baby” and “That’s How You Know (When You’re In Love)” at No. 10, and “Now I Know” at No. 5. A fourth studio album was released in 1998 on Lyric Street Records, followed by two more releases on White’s own label, Skinny White Girl. Overall, White has charted 12 times on the Billboard country music charts. – Wikipedia

WinCountry Obit

 

In Memoriam: James Rodford (1941 – 2018)

James Walter Rodford (7 July 1941 – 20 January 2018) was an English musician, who played bass guitar for several British rock groups. He was a founding member of Argent, which was led by his cousin Rod Argent, and performed with them from their formation in 1969 until they disbanded in 1976. He was the bass guitarist for The Kinks from 1978 until they disbanded in 1996. In 2004, he joined the reunited Zombies, whom he had been closely associated with since the early 1960s, and remained a member until his death in 2018. He was also a member of The Swinging Blue Jeans and The Kast Off Kinks.

Rodford met his wife, Jean, at the Pioneer Club in the early days of his music career. They have two sons, Steve, a drummer, and Russell, a guitarist. Rodford died after a fall on 20 January 2018, at age 76. – Wikipedia

In Memoriam: Hugh Masekela (1939 – 2018)

Hugh Ramopolo Masekela (4 April 1939 – 23 January 2018) was a South African trumpeter, flugelhornist, cornetist, composer and singer. He is considered the “father of South African jazz.” Masekela was known for his jazz compositions and for writing well-known anti-apartheid songs such as “Soweto Blues” and “Bring Him Back Home”. He also had a number 1 US pop hit in 1968 with his version of “Grazing in the Grass”.

From 1964 to 1968 he was married to singer and activist Miriam Makeba. He was the father of American television host Sal Masekela.

Masekela died in Johannesburg on 23 January 2018 from prostate cancer, aged 78. – Wikipedia

We will feature an hour of  Masekela music later today on RadioMax

Washington Post Obituary

 

 

In Memoriam: Dolores Mary Eileen O’Riordan (September 6, 1971 – January 15, 2018)

Dolores Mary Eileen O’Riordan (September 6, 1971 – January 15, 2018) was an Irish musician and singer-songwriter. She led the rock band The Cranberries to worldwide success for 13 years before the band took a break starting in 2003, reuniting in 2009.

http://www.tmz.com/2018/01/15/cranberries-dolores-oriordan-dead-dies/er first solo album Are You Listening? was released in May 2007 and was followed up by No Baggage in 2009. O’Riordan is notable for her lilting mezzo-soprano voice, for yodeling and for her strong Limerick accent. She appeared as a judge on RTÉ’s The Voice of Ireland during the 2013/14 season. In April 2014, O’Riordan joined Jetlag (now called D.A.R.K.) and began recording new material. In May 2017, Dolores declared that she had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

While in London, England, for a short recording session, O’Riordan died suddenly on Monday, January 15, 2018 at the age of 46. The cause of death was not immediately made public. – Wikipedia

Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolores_O%27Riordan

In Memoriam: Denise LaSalle (1939 – 2018)

Ora Denise Allen (July 16, 1939 – January 8, 2018), known by the stage name Denise LaSalle, was an American blues and R&B/soul singer, songwriter, and record producer who, since the death of Koko Taylor, had been recognized as the “Queen of the Blues”.

We feature her music 11pm ET on RadioMaxMusic

Her best known song was “Trapped by a Thing Called Love”.

Born near Sidon, Mississippi and raised in Belzoni, she sang in church choirs before moving to Chicago in the early 1960s. She sat in with R&B musicians and wrote songs, influenced by country music as well as the blues, before winning a recording contract with Chess Records in 1967. Her first single, “A Love Reputation” was a modest regional hit.

She established an independent production company, Crajon, with her then husband Bill Jones. Her song “Trapped By A Thing Called Love” (1971) was released on Detroit-based Westbound Records. This reached #1 on the national R&B chart and #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song ranked at #85 on the 1971 year-end chart. The RIAA gold disc award was made on November 30, 1971 for a million sales.

She also wrote successful follow-ups, “Now Run And Tell That” and “Man Sized Job” which made #3 and #4 in the R&B Top Ten and also charted in the Hot 100. Her early hits were recorded at the Hi recording studios in Memphis, operated by Willie Mitchell, using the cream of southern session players. She continued to have hits on Westbound and then on ABC Records through the mid-1970s, including “Love Me Right” (#10 R&B, #80 pop) She continued to produce and perform live. Her co-penned song, “Married, But Not to Each Other” (#16 R&B) was included in the 1979 The Best of Barbara Mandrell, compilation album.

In the early 1980s, she signed as a singer and songwriter with Malaco Records, for whom she released a string of critically acclaimed albums over more than 20 years, starting with Lady in the Street (1983) and Right Place, Right Time (1984). Both albums became successful among soul blues, R&B and soul fans and on urban radio stations. In 1985, she enjoyed her only recognition in the UK Singles Chart, when her cover version of Rockin’ Sidney’s “My Toot Toot” reached #6.

LaSalle appeared at the 1984 and 1993 versions of the Long Beach Blues Festival, and also in 1993, she performed at the San Francisco Blues Festival. Her album Smokin’ In Bed (1997) sold well. After more than a decade away, when she recorded three albums with small Memphis-based soul-blues label, Ecko, she returned to Malaco for her 2010 outing called “24 Hour Woman”. She continues to work as a live performer, particularly at festivals, and more recently has branched out into the gospel genre. In 2011, she was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame.

LaSalle lived with her husband, James E. Wolfe, in Jackson, Tennessee, where she opened a restaurant called Blues Legend Café. The restaurant was located at 436 E. Main Street, but has since closed.

In 2013 and 2014, LaSalle was nominated for a Blues Music Award in the ‘Soul Blues Female Artist’ category. On June 6, 2015, LaSalle was inducted into the Rhythm and Blues Music Hall of Fame.

After suffering from heart problems, and complications from a fall resulting in her right leg being amputated, LaSalle died on January 8, 2018, at the age of 78. – Wikipedia