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Posts Tagged ‘Leo Kottke’

Died On This Date (October 5, 2011) Bert Jansch / Scottish Folk Great

Posted by themusicsover on October 5, 2011

Bert Jansch
November 3, 1943 – October 5, 2011

A highly influential singer-songwriter, Bert Jansch was one of the cornerstones of the British folk revival of the ’60s.  Cited as an influence by no less than Neil Young, Jimmy Page, and  Paul Simon, Jansch’s mark was made on younger generations as well as evident by praise from and collaborations with the likes of Devendra Banhart, Pete Doherty, Johnny Marr, and Beth Orton.  Considered a virtuoso of the acoustic guitar, he is often mentioned in the same breath as John Fahey or Leo Kottke.  Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Jansch launched his career in 1960 and began building a following by playing British folk clubs.  By the mid ’60s he was hitchhiking and busking across Europe.  He soon settled in London where he recorded his first album, Bert Jansch, which has since been included in the reference guide, 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.   In 1968, Jansch co-founded Pentangle, a British folk supergroup of sorts that counted John Renbourn, Jacqui McShee, Danny Thompson, and Terry Cox among its members.  Perhaps a bit more jazz and baroque influenced than Jansch’s solo work, the group was one of the most popular of its kind during the late ’60s and early ’70s.   Pentangle disbanded in 1973 after which Jansch moved to a farm and took a bit of a break from the business.  He had regrouped by the end of the ’70s and continued on as a solo performer but reunited with Pentangle during the ’80s.  He continued on and off with the band for the better part of the next decade.  The 2000s found Jansch enjoying a renaissance of sorts, as evident by releases coming out on such hipster indie labels as Drag City and Cooking Vinyl.  His 2006 release for Drag City, The Black Swan, is considered one of his finest.  As reported by ABC News, Bert Jansch died of lung cancer on October 5, 2011.  He was 67.

Thanks to Harold Lepidus for the assist.

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L.A. Turnaround (Remastered) - Bert Jansch

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Died On This Date (April 11, 2001) Sandy Bull / Folk Guitar Great

Posted by themusicsover on April 11, 2010

Sandy Bull
January 1, 1941 – April 11, 2001

sandy-bullSandy Bull was a musical genius.  Best known for his brilliant folk guitar playing, he was also a master of the banjo, aud, pedal steel and other stringed instruments.  Like Vanguard Records label mate, John Fahey, Bull’s finger-picking incorporated various styles of music – in Bull’s case, classical, jazz and middle Eastern.  And like Fahey, he rose to prominence during the ’60s folk revival and influenced the likes of Leo KottkeRy Cooder, Richard Thompson, and later, M. Ward.  Bull struggled with drug addiction which forced him into early retirement in the early ’70s.  After successfully completing rehab, Bull was back in the studio and on stage by the early 80s.  He died of lung cancer on April 11, 2001 at the age of 60.

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Vanguard Visionaries: Sandy Bull - Sandy Bull

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Died On This Date (February 27, 1986) Robbie Basho / Progressive Folk Guitarist

Posted by themusicsover on February 27, 2010

Robbie Basho
August 31, 1940 – February 27, 1986

robbie-bashoRobbie Basho was a folk guitarist who is best remembered for his skills on the steel string guitar.  Unlike similar contemporaries like John Fahey, Sandy Bull and Leo Kottke, Basho generally incorporated elements of Indian, or raga music into his compositions. Over the course of his career, Basho released several albums on such respected labels as Vanguard, Windham Hill and Fahey’s Takoma.  On February 27, 1986, Robbie Basho died accidentally when a chiropractor’s adjustment ruptured blood vessels in his neck, causing him to die from a stroke.  He was 45.

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Robbie Basho

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Died On This Date (February 22, 2001) John Fahey / Folk Guitar Legend

Posted by themusicsover on February 22, 2010

John Fahey
February 28, 1939 – February 22, 2001

john-fahey John Fahey was an influential folk and blues guitarist who is revered for his minimalistic steel string finger-picking style of play.  Fahey bought his first guitar at the age of 13, and by the time he was 20, he was making his own recordings.  Besides his amazing guitar skill, what separated Fahey from most other musicians at the time, was that he started his own record label, Takoma Records through which to release while he was still just a teenager.  Through all this, Fahey continued his education, eventually earning a Master’s degree in folklore from UCLA.  As a musicologist, Fahey tracked down the long forgotten blues great, Bukka White whom he recorded and helped re-launch a career during the folk and blues revival of the early ’60s.  And he did the same for Skip James.  Fahey continued to release his own outstanding guitar-centric albums throughout the ’70s while helping to launch the careers of the likes of Leo Kottke, George Winston and Robbie Basho.  In recent years, he has been noted as a direct influence by such contemporary musicians as M. Ward, Sufjan Stevens, Devendra Banhart, and Sonic Youth’s Lee Renaldo.  Health and financial problems plagued John Fahey during his final years, and he was reportedly living out of cheap hotels until on February 22, 2001, he died following bypass surgery at the age of 61.

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The Yellow Princess - John Fahey

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Died On This Date (December 2, 1997) Michael Hedges / Acoustic Guitar Great

Posted by themusicsover on December 2, 2009

Michael Hedges
December 31, 1953 – December 2, 1997

Michael Hedges was a New Age multi-instrumentalist who is mostly remembered for his stellar acoustic guitar work.  Hedges was still in college when he was signed to respected folk, acoustic and new age label, Windham Hill, in the early ’80s.  His first two albums for the label can, as far as acoustic guitar records are concerned, rightfully stand alongside the best of John Fahey or Leo Kottke.  In later recordings, he occasionally branched out to include vocals and more pop leaning songs and instrumentation.  Guitar greats no less than Pete Townshend, Bonnie Raitt, Steve Vai and David Crosby have all praised his guitar talent.  On December 2, 1997, Michael Hedges, age 43, was killed when he lost control and crashed his car while driving along a slick and windy road along the coast north of San Francisco.

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Breakfast In the Field - Michael Hedges

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