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R.I.P.

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In light of the recent pandemic I’ve been purposely keeping this thread low as Lord knows there’s enough bad news going round without adding a third “C” to the usual causes; cancer & coronary. However, there’s a faint light at the end of the tunnel, so maybe time if not the usual salute to those who’ve passed, at least a heartfelt acknowledgement.

10th Feb - Lyle Mays (drummer with Pat Metheny) age 66
11th Feb - Paul English (backed Willie Nelson) age 87; pneumonia
6th March - McCoy Tyner (keyboard player) aged 81;
7th March - Keith Olsen; noted producer…
14th March - Genesis P-Orridge; aged 50; cancer
20th March - Kenny Rogers; aged 81
            Jerry Slick (Jefferson Starship); aged 80; cancer
22nd March - Julie Felix; aged 81; short illness
23rd March - Matt Taylor; cancer
24th March - Bill Rieflin; aged 59; cancer
28th March - Lou Kouvaris; (Riot) aged 66 - Covid
30th March - Bill Withers; 81; Heart condition
1st April - Adam Schlesinger; aged 52; Covid
7th April - John Prine; aged 73; Covid
          Steve Farmer (early work with Ted Nugent) aged 71; heart condition
21st April - Derek Jones (Falling In Reverse g/v) aged 35; Covid
            Florian Schneider (Kraftwerk) aged 73; cancer
3rd May - Dave Greenfield (Stranglers keys) aged 71; Covid
9th May -  Richard Wayne Penniman - Little Richard; aged 87
15th May - Phil May (Pretty Things) aged 75; following an accident at home
29th May - Bob Kulik; guitarist; aged 70
5th June - Steve Priest (bassist for Sweet) - aged 72

     

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Paul William Chapman RIP June 1954 - June 2020

“Tonka” was a Welsh rock guitarist best known for his work in bands such as Lone Star. UFO & Waysted Chapman was well known by his nickname “Tonka”, allegedly acquired because of his indestructible qualities.

     

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Ruben Armand “Benny” Mardones - Nov 9th 1946 - 29th June 2020 R.I.P.

Just learned that one of my favourite singer/songwriters Benny Mardones passed a couple of weeks ago. “Cruelly” dubbed “the poor-man’s Meatloaf”, Mardones had a big voice but early success was mired with substance abuse problems which he was eventually able to put behind him.

Mardones was mainly know for one major AOR hit, Into The Night which uniquely was a major Billboard hit at either end of the 1980s. He continued to tour and perform even after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2000 until he had to call it a day in December 2017. And a show-stealing appearance at a Roy Orbison tribute concert brought Mardones back into notice: despite lowly billing, he set the standard that few could match.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=biEoxd47f5o

R.I.P. Benny - Into The Night http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLj9OLw03Zs

     

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Peter Green (Peter Allen Greenbaum) - October 29th 1946 - July 25th 2020) R.I.P.

Quite simply, one of the greatest Blues guitarists Britain ever produced has been silenced, passing peacefully in his sleep aged 73.

Born in Bethnal Green, Peter Green first came to prominence after taking over from Clapton in Mayall’s Bluesbreakers before moving on in 1967 to collaborate with drummer Mick Fleetwood on a new project which also incorporated John McVie which became Fleetwood Mac. Green stayed with the band for 3 albums, but being overtaken by mental health problems, namely schizophrenia, left the band in 1970 and spent several of the following years hospitalised.

Green made sporadic music returns in the late 1970s and 80s to acclaim, though never achieved the previous heights.And the momentum couldn’t be maintained due to recurring mental health issues though there was a brief resurgance in the late 1990s (Splinter Group) and the Peter Green & Friends. In 1998, Green was part of the Fleetwood Mac line-up inducted to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Earlier this year (one of the last pre-Covid gigs, Mick Fleetwood hosted a special comemorative concert, honouring Peter Green’s contribution to Fleetwood Mac’s early legend and it was intimated shortly before Green’s passing that an “Early Years” 1967- 74 Box set could soon be in the offering - a poignant legacy to a lost legend.

     

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Glyn Ellis - aka Wayne Fontana aged 74 (died 6th Aug 2020) R.I.P.

Taking his name apparently from Elvis’ drummer DJ Fonatna; the beat group, consisting of Wayne and band mates Bob Lang, Ric Rothwell, and Eric Stewart, shot to fame in the mid 60s. Their biggest hits came in 1965 with the tune The Game of Love.

Wayne eventually decided to take his music career solo and his tune Pamela Pamela reached 11 in the UK charts.
In the 1970s, Wayne also reunited with ex band mate Eric Stewart and created more music but failed to make the charts. Later in his career, the musician was known for appearances at The Solid Silver 60s Show

     

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Martin Birch - Dec 1948 - 9th Aug 2020 R.I.P.

As record producer Martin Birch should be considered as a principle architect for the UK’s Hard Rock / Heavy Metal sound through the 1970s and 1980s.

Birch cut his teeth as audio engineer in the tailof of the 1960s working with the likes of Jeff Beck (Beck-ola), Fleetwood Mac (Then Play On - Mystery To Me) and Deep Purple with whom he’d enjoy a long association including the spin-off bands though he’ll probably be best associated with his work with Iron Maiden for who he produced 10 albums from their debut Killers to 1992’s Fear of The Dark, after which he retired.

The association with Deep Purple started in 1969 when he engineered the Concerto album, a role he kept to the Burn album then graduated to co-producer for Stormbringer, Come Taste The Band & Last Concert in Japan. In that association, he engineered/produced 2 albums for Jon Lord, 1 for Roger Glover (Elements); the first 4 albums for Rainbow plus the Final Vinyl collection as well as all the Whitesnake albums from 1978’s Snakebite to 1984’s Slide It In.

Other bands worked with, 3 1970’s “Classic” albums as engineer for Wishbone Ash;  2 Black Sabbath albums featuring Ronnie Dio (Heaven & Hell + Mob Rules) and 2 Blue Oyster Cult from the same period - Cultosaurus Erectus + Fire of Unknown Origin.

Other artists include Gary Moore (Grinding Stone); Cozy Powell (Over The Top), Michael Schenker Group (Assault Attack); Wayne County(Storm The Gates of Heaven)

     

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Trinidad “Trini” Lopez III - May 1937 - 11th Aug 2020 R.I.P.

Texas born singer, guitarist & actor best known as a singer for the 1963 hit cover If I Had A Hammer; the first of a run of 13 hits and as actor for role in 1967’s The Dirty Dozen. As an actor, his career fizzled out in the 1970s but as a singer he continued to record and perform in the years leading to his death, being credited with 65 album releases….

What many may not know is that as a guitarist, he was invited by Gibson asking him to design a guitar for them - eventually two were produced. The first (Lopez Standard) was based on the ES-355 semi-hollow model and the 2nd, (Lopez Deluxe) was based on the Gibson Jazz, first developed by Barney Kessel. Both models were produced until 1971 and have since become sought-after collector’s items (Dave Grohl and Noel Gallagher being notable fans of the models).

Cause of death is being reported as complications following Covid-19.

     

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