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Posts Tagged ‘The Neville Brothers’

Died On This Date (March 3, 2012) Ronnie Montrose / Rock Guitar Great

Posted by themusicsover on March 3, 2012

Ronnie Montrose
November 29, 1947 – March 3, 2012

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Ronnie Montrose was an American guitarist who, since the early 1970’s, has built a reputation as one of hard rock’s leading players.  Montrose was playing in a band called Sawbuck in when he was offered the chance to play with Van Morrison.  He can be heard on Morrison’s Tupelo Honey and Saint Dominic’s Preview.  Within a year or two, he was in the Edgar Winter Group before starting his own band, Montrose, in 1973.  The group, which included then-unknown Sammy Hagar on lead vocals, went on to release such hard rock staples as “Bad Motor Scooter” and “Rock Candy.”  Their self-titled debut sold over a million copies and has been called the first American heavy metal album.  Montrose later formed Gamma who is perhaps best known for “Fight To The Finish” and “Meanstreak.”  As an in-demand session player, Montrose played on records by the likes of Gary Wright, Boz Scaggs, the Beau Brummels, Nicolette Larson, Herbie Hancock, and the Neville Brothers.  Montrose continued to record, tour , and produce well into the 2000s.  Initial reports indicated that Ronnie Montrose died of prostate cancer on March 3, 2012. It was later revealed, however, that he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  He was 64.

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Died On This DAte (December 6, 2011) Dobie Gray / Soul & Country Singer-Songwriter

Posted by themusicsover on December 6, 2011

Dobie Gray
July 26, 1940 – December 6, 2011

Dobie Gray was an American soul (and later, country) singer and songwriter who, over a career that started in 1960, released hits like “The In Crowd” and “Drift Away,” which sold over a million copies and remains a staple on radio.  Born into a family of Texas sharecroppers, Gray was exposed to gospel music at an early age thanks to an uncle who was a Baptist minister.  By the early ’60s, he was living in Los Angeles where he met Sonny Bono who connected him with his first label, Stripe Records.  It wasn’t long until Gray was putting out a string of hits like “Look At Me,” “See You At The Go-Go,” and of course, “The In Crowd” and “Drift Away.”  The latter has been also recorded by such luminaries as Rod Stewart, Roy Orbison, the Neville Brothers, and Humble Pie. When he wasn’t making records, Gray worked as an actor – he spent over two years as part of the Los Angeles cast of Hair.  During the mid ’70s, Gray moved to Nashville where he wrote songs that were recorded by the likes of Charley Pride, George Jones, Ray Charles and Don Williams.  He also released a handful of moderately successful records at that time.  During the mid ’80s, Gray signed with Capitol Records and released a few country records that performed fairly well on the country charts.  Dobie Gray was 71 when he passed away in his sleep on December 6, 2011.  Cause of death was not immediately released, though he had been ill.

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