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Died On This Date (July 3, 1969) Brian Jones / The Rolling Stones

Posted by themusicsover on July 3, 2010

Brian Jones
February 28, 1942 – July 3, 1969

brian-jonesMember of the 27 Club

Brian Jones was a multi-instrumentalist who is most famously known as founding member and guitarist for the Rolling Stones.  By the age of 17, Jones was already adept at the clarinet and saxophone and had taken up the guitar.   While in high school, Jones got his then 14 year-old girlfriend Valerie Corbett pregnant and was forced to leave the school in shame.  When he announced to Corbett that he wanted her to have an abortion, she refused and broke up with him for good.  After the child’s birth, Corbett gave him to an infertile couple who apparently never learned  the identity of the boy’s father.  Corbett later married a friend of Jones.   By the early ’60s, Jones was in London where he became immersed in he local blues scene, playing with the likes of Alexis Korner, Jack Bruce and Bill Wyman.  In a short time, he was forming the nucleus of what would become the Rolling Stones who played their first gig on July 12, 1962.   When the group eventually began recording, it was Jones’ exceptional abilities on various instruments that would help define the Rolling Stones sound.  As the band’s fame and fortune grew, tension between Jones and the other members followed the same trajectory.  By all accounts, his growing addiction to various drugs and alcohol didn’t help.  By the summer of 1968, Jones was barely contributing to the band’s recordings, his final participation being on Beggars Banquet before parting ways the following year.  By all appearances, his life was on a downward spiral due to his drug dependency, his estrangement from the band that he had created, as well as his growing legal and financial troubles.  On the night of July 3, 1969, Brian Jones was found unconscious (and perhaps dead) at the bottom of his swimming pool.  As expected, there are many theories about the mysterious death of Brian Jones. Was it suicide?  An accident?  Did his bad heart or liver simply give out as the coroner stated?  Or was he perhaps murdered by a worker at the house?  Years later, that builder, Frank Thorogood allegedly confessed to the murder on his deathbed.  Although that “confession” was made to one-time Rolling Stones driver, Tom Keylock, many doubt its validity since there were no witnesses to the “murder” or the “confession.”

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