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Tag: In Memoriam (1-10 of 326)

Ramones drummer Tommy Ramone dies at age 65

Ramones co-founder Tommy Ramone has died at the age of 65, according to The Washington Post. Ramone was the drummer with the hugely influential New York punk band and the last surviving original member.

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Soul legend Bobby Womack dies at age 70

Soul star Bobby Womack died at age 70 on Friday, his label XL Recordings announced.

Famed for songs including “Across 110th Street,” “If You Think You’re Lonely Now,” “Lookin’ for a Love,” and “Woman’s Gotta Have It” — he also penned the Rolling Stones’ first no. 1 hit, “It’s All Over Now” — he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009.

While the cause of his death is still unknown, he had battled colon cancer and was diagnosed with early-stage Alzeheimer’s last year. READ FULL STORY

Legendary songwriter Gerry Goffin dies at 75

The songwriter Gerry Goffin, who alongside former wife Carole King wrote some of the most indelible songs of the ’60s, died of natural causes early Thursday morning at his home in Los Angeles. He was 75.

Goffin and King began their songwriting team soon after they were married in 1959, working out of New York City’s legendary Brill Building, which housed a number of influential songwriters (as well as musicians, producers, and assorted music industry professionals), who churned out hit songs at a factory-like pace in the years between rock and roll’s first wave of popularity and the rise of album-oriented radio in the ’70s. The Goffin-King credit appeared beside some of the era’s biggest hits, including “The Loco-Motion,” “Take Good Care of My Baby,” “Some Kind of Wonderful,” and “Will You Love Me Tomorrow,” the pair’s first No. 1 hit and most frequently recorded song. READ FULL STORY

What would Kurt Cobain's music sound like today?

In the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, I ruminate over the anniversary of the death of one of the last great rock stars with a simple question: Had he not died in April 1994, what might Kurt Cobain’s music have sounded like now?

In order to find some possible answers, I talked to Cobain’s friends and collaborators about his potential musical directions; the master playlist craftspeople at Beats Audio took those cues and built a batch of songs that help extrapolate what Cobain might have sounded like had he lived.

“Cobain always seemed like an old soul and I agree that he would have continued to explore more acoustic music, as opposed to electric,” says Beats’ Scott Plagenhoef. “He wrote personal lyrics but they were opaque and non-linear and he never wrote narratives. There is also a temptation to assume major creative forces like Cobain would remain progressive into their older age but the fact of the matter is that was never a quality that he displayed even during his lifetime. There is no indication he would have embraced electronic music, for example.”

The playlist includes a handful of tracks that seem like inevitable Cobain compositions (Elliott Smith’s “Waltz No. 2 (XO),” Wilco’s “How To Fight Loneliness,” The White Stripes’ “We’re Going To Be Friends”), as well as some reasonable stretches (EMA’s “California,” Cat Power’s “He War,” Lambchop’s “My Face Your Ass”). Spin the whole thing here while you consider what might have been.

What do you think Kurt Cobain would have sounded like in 2014? Let us know in the comments.

GWAR frontman Brockie found dead in Virginia home

Dave Brockie, frontman for the heavy metal band GWAR, has been found dead in his Richmond, Va., home at age 50.

Richmond police spokeswoman Dionne Waugh says officers were called to home shortly before 7 p.m. Sunday for a report of a dead person. When officers arrived, Brockie — who went by the stage name Oderus Urungus — was found dead inside the home.

Detectives don’t suspect foul play at this time and Waugh says the medical examiner’s office will determine cause of death.

The Grammy-nominated band founded in 1984 is known for its comically grotesque costumes, stage antics and vulgar lyrics.

GWAR released its latest album in 2013 and recently toured Australia and Japan.

In 2011, lead guitarist 34-year-old Cory Smoot was found dead on the band’s tour bus.

Pete Seeger dies at 94

Pete-Seeger.jpg

Pete Seeger, the iconic folk singer who dedicated his decades-long career to using music to fight for peace and justice for all, died Jan. 27 at New York Presbyterian Hospital. He was 94.

Beginning in the 1940s, Seeger played an instrumental role in the rise of folk music as a popular form. On his own and as a member of the Weavers, the banjo-playing New Yorker followed in the footsteps of legends like Woody Guthrie, bringing traditional songs sung by common Americans to a wider audience as well as composing soon-to-be-classic original tunes like “If I Had a Hammer.” Seeger became a nationwide star in 1950 when the Weavers’ cover of Leadbelly’s “Goodnight, Irene” became a No. 1 smash.

Yet Seeger’s blossoming career was nearly cut short forever in 1955 when he refused to testify before Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s notorious House Un-American Activities Committee about his associations with the leftist movement. Seeger’s subsequent blacklisting severely limited his ability to make a living through music. Seeger didn’t give up in the face of such crude intimidation, though — not then, not ever. Instead, he redoubled his musical activism, working hard to rally fellow citizens in support of labor unions and civil rights. READ FULL STORY

The Everly Brothers' Phil Everly dies at 74

Phil Everly, who, along with his brother Don, made up the musical duo The Everly Brothers, died Friday in Burbank, Calif. due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease according to a report in the Los Angeles Times. He was 74 years old.

The Everly Brothers rose to prominence in the late 1950s and early ’60s and created classic hits such as “All I Have to Do Is Dream,” “Bye Bye Love,” and “When Will I Be Loved.”

Everly was born in Chicago on Jan. 19, 1939, and moved across the country with his very musical family during his childhood. He had a brief solo career in the ’70s before reuniting with his brother for a concert in London in 1983. The two were among the first inductees at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.

Don, who is two years older than Phil, is still living.

More to come…

Tabby Thomas, Louisiana blues legend, dies at 84

Renowned bluesman Tabby Thomas has died at his home in Baton Rouge, La. He was 84.

Thomas’ daughter, Joylyn Thomas Wright, says her father passed away “peacefully and of natural causes” Wednesday. Thomas would have turned 85 on Sunday.

Funeral arrangements were pending.

Tabby Thomas is best known for his Louisiana-style blues, a hard-driving blues influenced by the Chicago bands.

He opened a music club in Baton Rouge called Tabby’s Blues Box, which closed in November 2004 after Thomas suffered a stroke and could no longer oversee its operations.

Thomas was married to Jocelyn Johnson Thomas for over 50 years. Joselyn passed away in 2005.

The couple had eight children and 20 grandchildren. His son Chris Thomas King is also a musician known for his fusion of rap and blues.

Jazz legend Yusef Lateef dies at 93

Grammy-winning musician and composer Yusef Lateef, one of the first to incorporate world music into traditional jazz, has died. He was 93.

Lateef died Monday at his home in Shutesbury in western Massachusetts, according to the Douglass Funeral Home in Amherst.

Lateef, a tenor saxophonist known for his impressive technique, also became a top flutist. He was a jazz soloist on the oboe and played bassoon. He introduced different types of flutes and other woodwind instruments from many countries into his music and is credited with playing world music before it was officially named.

“I believe that all humans have knowledge,” he said in a 2009 interview for the National Endowment for the Arts. “Each culture has some knowledge. That’s why I studied with Saj Dev, an Indian flute player. That’s why I studied Stockhausen’s music. The pygmies’ music of the rain forest is very rich music. So the knowledge is out there. And I also believe one should seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave. With that kind of inquisitiveness, one discovers things that were unknown before.”
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Lord Infamous, rapper with Three 6 Mafia, has died

Groundbreaking rapper Ricky Dunigan, who rhymed under the name Lord Infamous, passed away on Friday night at his mother’s home in Memphis. He was 40 years old. The cause of death is currently unknown.

Dunigan helped form the Memphis-based rap collective Three 6 Mafia in 1991 alongside DJ Paul (Paul Beauregard) and Juicy J (Jordan Houston). Infamous drifted in and out of the group since its inception, and his most recent recording was a 2013 mixtape as a part of the group Da Mafia 6ix, which consisted of several members of Three 6 Mafia.

“R.I.P. lord infamous,” Juicy J wrote on Twitter on Saturday. Fellow Mafia member Gangsta Boo also tweeted out condolences. “Rest in Peace Lord Infamous please respect the family and dear friends during this tragedy. I will never forget the shows we rocked together . My heart is in pieces.”

Infamous had suffered a heart attack and a stroke in 2010, though a statement from Infamous’ publicist indicated that it was unclear whether or not his health issues played into his passing.

Da Mafia 6ix were scheduled to release their proper debut album in 2014.

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