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Posts Tagged ‘Beatles’

RIP, Chris Cornell (May 17, 2017) Soundgarden, Audioslave, Temple of the Dog

Posted by themusicsover on May 17, 2017

Chris Cornell (Born Christopher Boyle)
July 20, 1964 – May 17, 2017

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Chris Cornell was Seattle singer, songwriter and guitarist who will forever be remembered as one of the primary architects of grunge, a sub-genre or alternative rock.  If a singer is lucky, she or he will find critical acclaim and commercial success by fronting just one band. But Cornell achieved that three times, with Soundgarden, Audioslave and early on, with Temple of the Dog, a one-off tribute to his friend, Mother Love Bone‘s Andrew Wood, who died of an overdose in 1990, just as the Seattle scene was about to change pop music forever. Born and raised in Seattle, Cornell found himself drawn to the Beatles as a child, reportedly spending most of his days between 9 and 11 years old, devouring a collection of Beatle records he found in a neighbor’s basement.  After learning to play the guitar and drums, Cornell joined a local cover band called the Shemps during the early ’80s.  It was with the Shemps that he forged his musical relationship with Kim Thayil and Hiro Yamamoto, which lead to the formation of Soundgarden in 1984.  The band went on to release six studio albums, with 1994’s Superunknown debuting at #1 and going on to sell over 9 million copies worldwide.  In all, Soundgarden sold upwards of 25 million albums.  With Audioslave, which Cornell co-founded with Tom Morello, Tim Commerford and Brad Wilk of Rage Against the Machine, Cornell and the band moved more toward a ’70s rock vibe.  The band released three albums which sold more than 4.5 million albums in the US alone.  As a solo artist, Cornell achieved success with four releases and had the rare opportunity to record the theme song for a James Bond film, 2006’s Casino Royale.  The single, “You Know My Name,” charted in several places, most notably, the UK, where it peaked at #7.  After initially disbanding in 1997, Soundgarden reformed in 2010 and released  King Animal in 2012.  It was their first album in 16 years and debuted at #5 on the Billboard charts. It was while on tour with Soundgarden in 2017 that Chris Cornell passed away. Found deceased in his hotel room following a May 17th performance in Detroit, the local Medical Examiner ruled his death a suicide by hanging. He was 52.

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Died On This Date (August 17, 1993) Phil Seymour / Dwight Twilley Band

Posted by themusicsover on August 17, 2010

Phil Seymour
May 11, 1952 – August 17, 1993

Phil Seymour was a singer, songwriter and musician who gained a following during the new wave era thanks to such power pop classics as “Precious To Me” as well as “I’m On Fire” from his days fronting the Dwight Twilley Band.  Seymour grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma where he met Dwight Twilley, another aspiring musician at a 1967 screening of the Beatles’ A Hard Day’s Night.  The struck up a friendship and a musical partnership that would eventually get them signed to Shelter Records who in 1975, released their first single, “I’m On Fire” which reached #16 on the Billboard singles chart.  They would record just two classic albums together before Seymour went of on his own.  Before the release of the first of his two solo albums, Seymour did session work, playing drums on power pop icons 20/20’s debut album, as well as singing backing vocals on Tom Petty’s “American Girl” and “Breakdown.”  During the early ’80s, Seymour released two albums, Phil Seymour (featuring “Precious To Me”) and Phil Seymour 2 before the death of label head, Neil Bogart derailed his record company as well as Seymour’s career.  In 1984, he joined the Textones, a Los Angeles band fronted by Carla Olson that was alt-country twenty years before the genre had a name.  Unfortunately, he was diagnosed with lymphoma not long after recording an album and touring with the band.  Phil Seymour died as a result of the cancer at the age of 41.

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Died On This Date (August 2, 1983) James Jamerson / Bassist On Many Early Motown Hits; The Funk Brothers

Posted by themusicsover on August 2, 2010

James Jamerson
January 29, 1936 – August 2, 1983

jamersonBorn in South Carolina, James Jamerson moved to Detroit where learned to play the bass in high school.  He soon started playing in the local jazz and blues clubs and by the early ’60s, he was working at Berry Gordy’s studio.  He, along with some of popular music’s greatest musicians were called the Funk Brothers and they can be heard on nearly every Motown record throughout the ’60s.  Jamerson played on literally hundreds of Motown songs including such hits as “My Girl” (the Temptations), “You Can’t Hurry Love (the Supremes), “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” (Gladys Knight), and “What’s Goin’ On” (Marvin Gaye).   It has been said that Jamerson played on more #1 pop hits than the Beatles, who own that actual record.   Many of the world’s greatest bass players have pointed to Jamerson as their main influence.  That list includes John Entwistle, John Paul Jones, Paul McCartney, and Jack Bruce.  Jamerson and Motown parted company in 1973 after which, he found work playing on such disco hits as “Boogie Fever” and “Don’t Rock The Boat.”   A longtime drinker,  James Jamerson died of cirrhosis of the liver, heart failure and pneumonia at the age of 47.



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Died On This Date (July 18, 1966) Bobby Fuller / Rock ‘n Roll Great

Posted by themusicsover on July 18, 2010

Bobby Fuller
October 22, 1942 – July 18, 1966

Pound for pound, Bobby Fuller’s remarkable output could stack up against any of his peers even though it was cut tragically short after just two years. Songs like “I Fought The Law,” “Let Her Dance,” and “Another Sad and Lonely Night” are just a few of his classic rock ‘n roll recordings that have either been covered by major artists or cited as major influences. Growing up, Fuller idolized fellow Texan, Buddy Holly, and at an early age decided he wanted to be a rock ‘n roll singer as well. Starting in the early ’60s, Fuller began to make a name for himself in the El Paso area clubs, and by 1964, he was living in Los Angeles, chasing his dreams. It was while in Los Angeles, he formed the Bobby Fuller Four and convinced legendary producer Bob Keane to sign them to Mustang Records. Keane’s other claim to fame was discovering a young Ritchie Valens. With a sound that was equal parts Buddy Holly, Tex Mex, the Beatles, the Beach Boys, Elvis, Little Richard and the Ventures, Fuller began putting out such instant hit records as “Let Her Dance,” “Love’s Made A Fool Of You,” and of course, the great “I Fought the Law.” And then, almost as quickly as it started, it all came to a tragic and mysterious end. In what the incompetent police ruled a “suicide,” Fuller was found with multiple wounds to his body, covered in gasoline, and left for dead in a parked car outside his apartment. The scene, not only unsecured by police, was never dusted for fingerprints. Fuller’s mother claimed that the police told her that he had been dead for two hours, even though she had been with him just 30 minutes prior. And one witness even came forward claiming they saw a police officer discard a gas can into a nearby dumpster. But the case was never solved. Many speculate that the perpetrators fled the scene before they were able to burn the car and body. And adding to the mystery, the LAPD case files remain lost to this day. A 2002 novel entitled The Dead Circus by John Kaye further fuels the fire by including a “fictional” subplot that has Frank Sinatra ordering the hit on Fuller because he did not like him dating his daughter.

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Died On This Date (July 15, 1958) Julia Lennon / Mother of John Lennon

Posted by themusicsover on July 15, 2010

Julia Lennon
March 12, 1914 – July 15, 1958

With John Lennon

With John Lennon

Julia Lennon did more for popular music than give birth to John Lennon, she unknowingly contributed to the greatness he later became by being perhaps his only early champion when it came to music.  Julia gave John his first guitar as a child. And when he couldn’t quite learn the chords, she helped him by teaching him on a smaller banjo and ukele.  This all against the wishes of her sister, Mimi Smith, who was raising John at the time since it was not, at the time, socially acceptable that Julia was living with another man after John’s biological father basically abandoned the family.   Perhaps another of Julia’s lasting impressions on John were the times she played early Elvis Presley records for him.  In the year prior to her death, Julia was reportedly one of John’s pre-Beatles band, the Quarrymen’s biggest fans, dancing and cheering for them at at least one early show.  Unfortunately Julia was never able to see the greatness her son eventually became.  On the evening of July 15, 1958, Julia was struck and killed by a car driven by an off-duty policeman who was drunk at the time.  Julia was just 44 at the time.



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