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Tag: In Memoriam (61-70 of 323)

Jazz composer, pianist Dave Brubeck dies at 91

Jazz composer and pianist Dave Brubeck, whose pioneering style in pieces such as “Take Five” caught listeners’ ears with exotic, challenging rhythms, has died. He was 91.

Brubeck died Wednesday morning of heart failure after being stricken while on his way to a cardiology appointment with his son Darius, said his manager Russell Gloyd. Brubeck would have turned 92 on Thursday.

Brubeck had a career that spanned almost all American jazz since World War II. He formed The Dave Brubeck Quartet in 1951 and was the first modern jazz musician to be pictured on the cover of Time magazine – on Nov. 8, 1954 – and he helped define the swinging, smoky rhythms of 1950s and `60s club jazz.

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Major Harris, Delfonics singer, dies at 65

Major Harris, a former member of the “Philadelphia sound” soul group the Delfonics and singer of the 1975 hit “Love Won’t Let Me Wait,” has died in Richmond. He was 65. His sister, Catherine Thomas, told the Associated Press that Harris passed away Friday morning from congestive heart and lung failure after being rushed to a hospital.

The Richmond native was born Feb. 9, 1947, and grew up in a musical family. His father was a guitarist and his mother led the church choir, Thomas said. In his teens, Harris was tall for his age and was able to get into clubs to watch musicians perform, she said.

“He always appeared to be older, which gave him a lot of ins to a lot of older places,” Thomas joked. She said he didn’t drink in the clubs back then, but he was pursuing his career. Music, she said, “was his life.” READ FULL STORY

Suicide Silence singer Mitchell Lucker dies in motorcycle accident

Mitchell Lucker, frontman for the death-metal band rising star Suicide Silence, died Thursday of injuries in a Southern California motorcycle crash. He was 28.

Lucker lost control of his black 2013 Harley-Davidson in Huntington Beach at 8:55 p.m. on Halloween night and slammed into a Main Street light pole, police said in a news release. He died Thursday at University of California, Irvine, Medical Center.

Lucker, who lived in Huntington Beach, was ejected while the motorcycle continued south and crashed into a Nissan Titan pickup truck, police said in a news release. Two people in the pickup and nearby trick-or treaters weren’t hurt.

The accident was being investigated to determine whether alcohol was a factor, police said. READ FULL STORY

Bill Dees, co-writer of 'Oh, Pretty Woman,' dies

Bill Dees emerged from his days as an out-of-cash young songwriter to pen tunes recorded by Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn and other country music greats, but the centerpiece of his career was his work with Roy Orbison, including co-writing the classic rock hit, “Oh, Pretty Woman.”

Dees, who died in Arkansas last week at age 73, had said writing that song with Orbison in 1964 changed his life. In a 2008 interview with National Public Radio, Dees recalled that the night they penned the hit song, Orbison told him he wouldn’t need to go to work that Monday if he didn’t want to.
“He said, ‘Buy yourself an electric piano, and I’ll take you on the road with me.’ And he said, ‘I’ll pay you what the band’s getting,’” Dees said during the NPR interview, which is posted on his Dees’ website.

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Whitney Houston getting primetime special, greatest hits package, photo book

When Whitney Houston died suddenly in February, near-immediate tributes sprung up everywhere from that weekend’s Grammy telecast and EW’s own print cover.

But some tributes, of course, can’t be wrought so quickly, and this coming November will bring a number of longer-gestating odes to the fallen superstar. On November 16, CBS will broadcast We Will Always Love You: A Grammy Salute To Whitney Houston, an hour-long primetime special that genuflects to Houston’s music with the aid of stars like Jennifer Hudson and Usher (with more to be announced). The special will tape at Los Angeles’ Nokia Theater on October 11, and tickets are on sale now.

That week in November will also sees the release of I Will Always Love You: The Best of Whitney Houston, a new collection of her biggest hits — including “I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” “I’m Your Baby Tonight,” and “My Love Is Your Love,” and 15 others. Also included: a new version of “I Look to You” featuring R. Kelly. Check it out below. READ FULL STORY

Happy 100th Birthday, John Cage! Here's a Spotify playlist in your honor

John Cage is a lot of things to a lot of people: avant-garde champion, educational activist, modern-dance revolutionarymushroom pioneer, general troublemaker.

The controversial avant-garde artist and composer would’ve turned 100 years old today, and people are still debating his legacy, which, well, is probably more of a testament to his legacy than anything. Nationally, there are plenty of events going on to honor the man’s life — the National Gallery in D.C. has already begun the John Cage Centennial Festival, and the New York Mycological Society is recreating his famous work 4’33″ using fungi.

Since we here at Music Mix spend most of our days attached to our keyboards (EW higher-ups installed USB ports onto our bodies on orientation day), our tribute to one of the last century’s most towering musical figures comes in the form of a Spotify playlist. Give it a listen and let us know what you’d put on your own John Cage playlist:

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Hal David, Oscar-winning songwriter of classics with Burt Bacharach, dies at 91

Hal David, whose simple, heartfelt lyrics made a perfect fit with Burt Bacharach’s quirky melodies and resulted in dozens of hit songs, including “Do You Know the Way to San Jose” and “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head,” died Saturday. He was 91.

David died of complications from a stroke Saturday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, according to his wife Eunice David.

He had suffered a major stroke in March and was stricken again on Tuesday, she said.

“Even at the end, Hal always had a song in his head,” Eunice David said. “He was always writing notes, or asking me to take a note down, so he wouldn’t forget a lyric.” READ FULL STORY

Chris Lighty, manager of stars like Mariah Carey, LL Cool J, and Diddy, has died at 44

Chris Lighty, the hip-hop impresario and manager of the likes of Busta Rhymes, 50 Cent, and Diddy, has died. He was 44 years old.

According to a report in the New York Daily News, Lighty took his own life in his Bronx apartment this morning following an argument with his ex-wife. Though details remain scarce, authorities do know that he and his wife divorced last year, and that he may have owed as much as $5 million to the IRS in unpaid taxes.

At the turn of the century, being managed by Lighty and his Violator Entertainment shingle was a prestigious get — some of the biggest names in the music industry came under his guidance, including Mariah Carey, Missy Elliott, LL Cool J, Nas, and Ja Rule.

He began his career under the tutelage of Lyor Cohen and Russell Simmons as Rush Management in the late ’80s, later setting up Violator as one of the early multi-pronged management companies. They produced two compilations (Violator: The Album, and Violator: The Album, V2.0), which featured the likes of Q-Tip (performing his breakout solo single “Vivrant Thing”), Fat Joe, Mobb Deep, Cam’Ron, Cee-Lo, and Mase.

There was rarely a rap star from that era who didn’t come in contact with Lighty, who was known as a fair and savvy navigator of the ever-tumultuous waters of the hip-hop world, and he will undoubtedly be missed.

Read More on EW.com:
Review: Violator: The Album
Review: Violator: The Album, V2.0

Marshall Tucker Band guitarist Swanlund dies at 54

Marshall Tucker Band guitarist Stuart Swanlund has died. He was 54.\

Publicist Don Murry Grubbs said Monday night that the guitarist died in his sleep of natural causes Saturday at his Chicago home.

Swanlund joined the band in 1985 after it had split up and regrouped. He was the longest running member of the group except for founding member Doug Gray.

The group is best known for its 1977 Top 40 hit “Heard It In a Love Song.” Their sound is a blend of rock, country and gospel.

Swanlund’s funeral will take place Saturday at the Good Shepherd Memorial Park in Boiling Springs, S.C.

He’s survived by his sister, three grandchildren, a son, William “Billy” Swanlund, and his lifelong partner, Stacey Schmaren.

Members of Hold Steady, Vampire Weekend, more join Jerry Garcia tribute live-streaming this Friday

As those of you on the golden road (to unlimited devotion) already know, today would have been Jerry Garcia’s 70th birthday. And while the beloved Grateful Dead frontman is no longer sitting on top of the world, he’s still got plenty of friends truckin’ on his behalf, seventeen years after his death at age 53 of a heart attack.

Dead guitarist Bob Weir has announced that his TRI Studios will be live-streaming a Jerry Garcia tribute concert this Friday for the occasion. The high-definition webcast will be emceed by actor Luke Wilson and viewable at both TRI’s site and at Yahoo! Music starting at 6:30 pm PST, and feature a range of fans and friends.

So far, the announced roster includes indie-rock favorites like Hold Steady members Craig Finn and Tad Kubler, Vampire Weekend-er Chris Tomson, and California songwriter Cass McCombs, as well as folk-slash-jam artists like Phish vet Mike Gordon, psych dude Jonathan Wilson, and Willie Nelson and Paul Simon offspring Lukas Nelson and Harper Simon — all of whom will be headed by Weir.

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