Posted by themusicsover on October 2, 2012
February 14, 1941 – October 2, 2012
Big Jim Sullivan was one of the most requested and prolific session guitarists that England ever produced. Over a career that spanned over 50 years, he played on around 1000 records that charted in the UK, more than 50 reached number one. Legend has it that he played on upwards of 3000 records a year during the height of his career. Sullivan was just 14 when he started learning to play the guitar, and in just two years, he was playing professionally. In 1959, he joined a band called the Wildcats who were backing Marty Wilde at the time. The following year, the Wildcats backed Eddie Cochran and Gene Vincent on the infamous UK tour that ultimately took Cochran’s life. Over the next two decades, Sullivan became one of the most in-demand guitarists in the business. He also gave a young Ritchie Blackmore guitar lessons and helped convince Jim Marshall to make his now famous amps. During this time, Sullivan was one of the earliest to make use of feedback, the fuzzbox and talkbox, which was made into more or less a household name by Peter Frampton on his classic Frampton Comes Alive album of 1976. The short list who employed Sullivan to play on their records is made up of the Kinks, Tom Jones, Shirley Bassey, Dusty Springfield, Marianne Faithfull, David Bowie, Donovan, and Frank Zappa. He was also a familiar face playing alongside Tom Jones on his American variety show. Sullivan also found time to record several albums of his own as well. Big Jim Sullivan was 71 when he passed away on October 2, 2012. He was reportedly suffering from diabetes and heart disease at the time of his death.
Thanks to Harold Lepidus at Bob Dylan Examiner for the assist.
Posted in Musician, Rock | Tagged: Big Jim Sullivan, David Bowie, Donovan, Dusty Springfield, Eddie Cochran, Frank Zappa, Gene Vincent, Jim Marshall, Marianne Faithfull, Marty Wilde, Shirley Bassey, The Kinks, The Wildcats, Tom Jones | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on January 4, 2012
Mick Karn (Born Andonis Michaelides)
July 24, 1958 – January 4, 2011
Mick Karn is perhaps best remembered as the bassist for British art-rock band, Japan during the late ’70s and early ’80s. The band, which also featured David Sylvian, Richard Barbieri, Steve Jansen and Rob Dean where one of the foundations on which the “New Romantic” movement was built – even though they fought to distance themselves from it. They fancied themselves more of the David Bowie, New York Dolls and T. Rex ilk. Albums like Gentlemen Take Polaroids and Tin Drum quickly established them as leaders of the alternative rock heap around the world. After the band broke up in 1982, Karn released several solo albums while collaborating with the likes of Midge Ure, Peter Murphy, Joan Armatrading, Gary Numan, and Kate Bush. He continued to record as recently as 2009. On January 4, 2011, Mick Karn died of a cancer that he had been battling for the previous several months. He was 52.
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Posted in Musician, New Wave, Rock | Tagged: Andonis Michaelides, David Bowie, David Sylvian, Gary Numan, Japan, Joan Armatrading, Kate Bush, Mick Karn, Midge Ure, New York Dolls, Peter Murphy, Richard Barbieri, Rob Dean, Steve Jansen, T. Rex | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on December 18, 2011
March 15, 1944 – December 18, 2011
Ralph MacDonald was an in-demand percussionist and hit songwriter who could count two of the biggest R&B songs of the ’70s as his own. Growing up in a musical family in Harlem, New York, MacDonald first picked up the steelpan as a youngster. By the time he was 17, he had already played his first big gig at a local Harry Belafonte show. He continued on with Belafonte for the next ten years until parting ways in 1971. MacDonald soon became one of contemporary music’s most in-demand session players, performing on countless R&B, jazz and disco records. The list of those he recorded with includes George Benson, Paul Simon, Jimmy Buffett, Carole King, Average White Band, the Brothers Johnson, Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin, and David Bowie. MacDonald also released several albums under his own name. His song, “Calypso Breakdown” can be heard on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. As a songwriter, MacDonald scored to massive c0-writing hits; “Where Is The Love,” the 1971 hit for Roberta Flack, and “Just The Two Of Us,” the Grammy-winning hit for Bill Withers in 1981. Ralph MacDonald was 67 when he died of lung cancer on December 8, 2011.
Thanks to Paul Bearer for the assist.
Posted in Jazz, Musician, R&B, Songwriter | Tagged: Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin, Average White Band, Bill Withers, Carole King, David Bowie, George Benson, Harry Belafonte, Jimmy Buffett, Paul Simon, Ralph MacDonald, Roberta Flack, The Brothers Johnson | 1 Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on August 28, 2011
May 28, 1952 – August 28, 2011
Photo by Paul Rider
Tom Hibbert was an English journalist who found fame for his sometimes less than flattering pieces on rock musicians throughout the ’80s and ’90s. After dropping out of Leeds University during the ’70s, Hibbert played in a handful of local bands before giving up his rock star dreams and moving on to a life in journalism. Over the course of his career, he wrote music and pop culture columns for the New Music News, Q, and Smash Hits where he ridiculed the likes of Paul McCartney, Johnny Rotten, and David Bowie. Perhaps his biggest moment came in 1987, when Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher employed Hibbert to interview her in an attempt to appeal to young voters. The plan backfired as the interview revealed such decidedly non-hip nuggets as her favorite singer being Cliff Richard, and song being “How Much is That Doggie in the Window.” Hibbert spent the last decade of his life in ill health and ultimately died from complications of diabetes on August 28, 2011. He was 59.
Thanks to Kelly Wilson at New Releases Now! for the assist.
Posted in Journalist | Tagged: Cliff Richard, David Bowie, Johnny Rotten, Margaret Thatcher, Paul McCartney, Tom Hibbert | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on July 4, 2011
May 3, 1919 – July 4, 2011
Jane Scott was, simply put, a rock critic’s rock critic. For 50 years, she covered nearly every major concert that came through Cleveland, Ohio for the city’s major daily, the Plain Dealer. Born in Cleveland, Scott graduated from the University of Michigan and served in the U.S. Navy before taking up a career in journalism. In March of 1952, just three days after Cleveland DJ, Alan Freed put on what has been called the world’s first rock concert, Scott was hired by the Plain Dealer to cover local society events. In 1958, she took over a column that was aimed at what now would be called “tweens,” and soon morphed it into one of the world’s first rock columns. Scott’s earliest major rock story came in 1964 when she covered the Beatles‘ first show at Cleveland’s Public Hall. She soon found herself covering the band’s tour through Europe. When the Fab Four returned to Cleveland in 1966, it was Scott who scored one of Paul McCartney’s first American interviews ever. By her retirement in 2002, Scott estimated that she had been to over 10,000 concerts, and along the way she earned the love, friendship and respect from everyone from Mick Jagger to Jim Morrison to David Bowie to Bob Dylan. So beloved by the rock community, it took her 80th birthday celebration in 1999 to reunite the Raspberries. And to help celebrate the occasion, Glenn Frey of the Eagles sent a note saying “Jane, you never met a band you didn’t like,” while Lou Reed wrote “I must confess, I love Jane Scott. When I was in the Velvet Underground in the ’60s, Jane was one of the only people I can remember who was nice to us.” Scott was 83 when she retired, but she continued to attend concerts by her favorites – the Rolling Stones, the Who, and Bruce Springsteen. Jane Scott was 92 when she passed away on July 4, 2011.
Posted in Journalist, Rock | Tagged: Alan Freed, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Jane Scott, Jim Morrison, Lou Reed, Mick Jagger, Paul McCartney, Rolling Stones, The Beatles, The Eagles, The Raspberries, the who, Velvet Underground | Leave a Comment »