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Posts Tagged ‘The Police’

Died On This Date (August 22, 2011) Tony Ruffino / Concert Industry Legend

Posted by themusicsover on August 22, 2011

Tony Ruffino
DOB Unknown – August 22, 2011

Tony Ruffino was a respected Birmingham, Alabama concert promoter who in 1969, began bringing such acts as Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley, and the Allman Brothers to the city.  Originally from New York, Ruffino settled in Birmingham in 1977, after running Ruffino-Vaughn Productions, the business he shared with Larry Vaughn, from its New York office.  During the early ’80s, he and Vaughn parted ways, with Ruffino going on to form New Era Productions where he promoted local shows by the Police, Warren Zevon, and Elvis Costello, to name a few.  It was a matter of time before Ruffino opened the popular local venues, Oak Mountain Amphitheatre and Five Points South Music Hall. He also became part owner of Brothers Music Hall before retiring from the business in 2004.  On August 22, 2011, Tony Ruffino suffered a fatal stroke.  He was 74.

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Died On This Date (August 14, 2005) Esther Wong / The Godmother Of Punk; Owned Madame Wong’s in L.A.

Posted by themusicsover on August 14, 2010

Esther Wong
August 13, 1917 – August 14, 2005

Esther Wong was a Chinese immigrant who landed in Los Angeles in 1949.  By the mid ’70s, Wong and her husband were running Chinese restaurant that presented a Polynesian floor show in L.A.’s Chinatown.  When business started to slow down by the end of the decade, Wong reluctantly allowed a local promoter to start booking local punk bands on her stage.  At the time, most of the city’s venues were banning such acts.  The promoter and Wong soon parted company and Wong started bringing music she enjoyed – the more pop leaning new wave.  In 1985, the club was seriously damaged in a fire and within a few years, Wong opened Madame Wong’s West in Santa Monica where she continued building her reputation as the “Godmother of Punk.”  The list of acts that played Madam Wong’s during their early years includes Guns ‘N Roses, Black Flag, Blondie, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Oingo Boingo, Fear, the Ramones, the Go-Gos, and the Police.  Esther Wong died of emphysema on August 14, 2005, the day after her 88th birthday.

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Died On This Date (March 20, 1988) Gil Evans / Jazz Legend

Posted by themusicsover on March 20, 2010

Gil Evans (Born Ian Green)
May 13, 1912 – March 20, 1988

gil Gil Evans was a respected  jazz pianist, band leader, composer and arranger who was part of an influential group of musicians that paved the way for cool jazz and jazz fusion.  Evans’ most celebrated collaborations were with Miles Davis, for whom he arranged and composed tracks on such monumental albums as Birth of the Cool, Sketches of Spain, and Miles Ahead.   During the late ’50s, Evans began releasing a string of albums that continued up to and beyond his passing.  With a keen interest in rock as well, Evans worked with some of its biggest name during the latter part of his life. That list includes the Police, Sting, the Style Council and David Bowie.  He was reportedly to collaborate with Jimi Hendrix, but Hendrix passed away before that could take place.  Gil Evans was 75 when he passed away on March 20, 1988.

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Gil Evans & Ten - Gil Evans

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Died On This Date (November 24, 2008) Kenny MacLean / Platinum Blonde

Posted by themusicsover on November 24, 2009

Kenny MacLean
January 9, 1956 – November 24, 2008

Kenny MacLean is best remembered as the bassist for Canadian new wave band, Platinum Blonde.  Initially formed as a Police tribute band, Platinum Blonde went on to become one Canada’s most popular bands of the the era, selling in the multi-platinum status and earning two Juno nominations.  During the ’90s, MacLean released a couple of solo albums and earned a Most Promising Male Vocalist Juno nomination.  He went into music education during the 2000s, forming his own teaching academy in 2006.  Kenny MacLean, 52,  died of natural causes related to his heart on November 24, 2008.

Thanks to Craig Rosen at Number1Albums for the assist.

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