In Memoriam: 2017

December 31st, 2017

Chuck Berry, 1926-2017

Some of the musicians, songwriters, producers, engineers, managers, agents, broadcasters, journalists, industry executives, and studio and club owners who passed away in 2017.

Stuart Hamilton, Canadian pianist, broadcaster (CBC) and vocal coach
Memo Morales, Venezuelan singer
Auriel Andrew, Australian country musician
Sam Lovullo, television producer (Hee Haw)
Joe M. Wright, country guitarist and songwriter
Hayward Bishop Jr., Nashville session drummer
Mike Garborno, punk rock singer (Cadillac Tramps)
Abdul Halim Jaffer Khan, Indian sitar player
Ustad Bade Fateh Ali Khan, Pakistani singer
Bart Prater, radio broadcaster (WROV, K92, WVTF)
Dave Franklin, punk rock singer (Vision)
Johnny Dick, Australian drummer (Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs)
Sylvester Potts, soul singer (The Contours)
Nat Hentoff, critic and journalist (Village Voice, Wall Street Journal)
Eddie Kamae, ukulele player and singer (Sons of Hawaii)
Jerzy Kossela, Polish guitarist, singer and songwriter
Buddy Bregman, arranger, producer, composer and orchestrator
Peter Sarstedt, British pop singer and songwriter
Crazy Toones, hip-hop producer and DJ
Travis Peterson, music video producer
Buddy Greco, jazz and pop singer and pianist (“The Lady is a Tramp”)
Tommy Allsup, western swing and rock ‘n’ roll guitarist (Buddy Holly)
Tony Booth, British poster artist (The Beatles)
Meir Banai, Israeli singer
Larry Steinbachek, keyboardist (Bronski Beat)
Muhammad Fachroni, Indonesian singer (Project Pop)
Dick Gautier, actor and singer (Bye Bye Birdie, Get Smart)
Mark Fisher, cultural theorist and writer (K-Punk)
Horacio Guarany, Argentinian folklorist and singer
Richie Ingui, rock and soul singer (The Soul Survivors)
Alan Jabbour, fiddler and folklorist
Yanni Alexis “Magic Alex” Mardas, artist and Apple Corp. employee
Yama Buddha, Nepalese rapper
Terry Cryer, jazz and blues photographer
Thandi Klaasen, African jazz singer
Greg Trooper, singer, songwriter and guitarist
William Onyeabor, Nigerian funk musician
Charles “Bobo” Shaw, jazz drummer (Human Arts Ensemble)
Steve Wright, rock bassist and songwriter (The Greg Kihn Band)
Roberta Peters, coloratura soprano
Marilyn Petrone, music industry executive (Dick Clark Productions)
Darci Rossi, Brazilian composer
Loalwa Braz, Brazilian singer and songwriter (“Lambada”)
Ramón Cordero, Dominican singer
Howard Kaufman, artist manager (Eagles, Aerosmith, Jimmy Buffett)
Mike Kellie, rock drummer (Spooky Tooth, The Only Ones)
Hans Breukhoven, Dutch businessman (Free Record Shop)
Ronald “Bingo” Mundy, doo-wop singer (The Marcels)
Joey Powers, singer and songwriter (“Midnight Mary”)
Chuck Stewart, jazz photographer
Frank Thomas, French songwriter
Karl Hendricks, indie rock musician and record store owner (Sound Cat)
Walter “Junie” Morrison, funk keyboardist and songwriter (P-Funk)
Maggie Roche, singer and songwriter (The Roches)
Dan Caspi, Romanian-born Israeli media theorist
Jean Karakos, producer, label owner and manager
Jaki Liebezeit, rock drummer (Can)
Naqsh Lyallpuri, Urdu poet and lyricist
Pete Overend Watts, English rock bassist (Mott the Hoople)
Bimba Bosé, Italian-born Spanish singer and television personality
Lee O’Denat, internet entrepreneur (WorldStarHipHop)
Marvell Thomas, soul keyboardist, son of Rufus Thomas
Tom Edwards, guitarist and band leader (Adam Ant)
Gil Ray, drummer (Game Theory, Loud Family)
Björn Thelin, rock bassist (The Spotnicks)
Butch Trucks, drummer (The Allman Brothers Band)
Ronnie Davis, Jamaican reggae singer (The Tennors, The Itals)
Don Grilley, Broadway actor and singer
Jack Mendelsohn, artist and screenwriter (Yellow Submarine)
Benny Collins, production and tour manager (Journey, Rolling Stones)
Henry-Louis de La Grange, French musicologist
Bruce Hathaway, South African radio broadcaster
Bobby Freeman, singer and songwriter (“Do You Want to Dance”)
Geoff Nicholls, British rock keyboardist (Black Sabbath)
Gabriel “Guitar Cable” Perrodin, blues musician
Alexander Tikhanovich, Belarusian pop singer
Elkin Ramírez, Colombian rock singer and songwriter (Kraken)
Brian Tabor, country songwriter
Edward Blau, entertainment attorney (Johnny Mathis)
Deke Leonard, Welsh rock guitarist (Man)
Carsten Mohren, German keyboardist (Rockhaus)
John Schroeder, British songwriter and producer (Sounds Orchestral)
John Wetton, British bassist, singer and songwriter (King Crimson, Asia)

Desmond Carrington, British actor and radio broadcaster
Robert Dahlqvist, Swedish rock guitarist and singer (The Hellacopters)
Danny Lee Jones, bluegrass musician
Steve Lang, Canadian rock bassist (April Wine)
Noel “Scully” Simms, Jamaican reggae and ska percussionist
Marc Spitz, music author and journalist (Spin)
David Axelrod, producer, composer and arranger
Sonny Geraci, pop singer (The Outsiders, Climax)
Tommy Flint, guitarist, author, instructor and journalist
Ritchie Yorke, Australian-born music author and journalist
Svend Asmussen, Danish jazz violinist
Charles E. Justice, country fiddler
Loukianos Kilaidonis, Greek singer and songwriter
Gianfranco Plenizio, Italian soundtrack composer, conductor and pianist
José Luis Pérez de Arteaga, Spanish music critic and announcer
Kitty Moon Emery, music industry executive
Tony Davis, British folk musician (The Spinners)
Barbara Carroll, jazz pianist, singer and composer
Jarmila Šuláková, Czech folk singer
Damian, British pop singer
Robert Fisher, singer and songwriter (Willard Grant Conspiracy)
Al Jarreau, jazz and R&B singer
Alice Ludes, singer (Bing Crosby’s Music Maids)
Giusto Pio, Italian songwriter (“I treni di Tozeur”), violinist and producer
Trish Doan, metal bassist (Kittie)
Marty Lacker, record industry executive (American Sound)
Carol Lloyd, Australian rock singer (“A Matter of Time”)
Tony Särkkä, Swedish metal guitarist, bassist and drummer
E-Dubble, rapper
Tibério Gaspar, Brazilian composer and musician
Braxton Dixon, home builder (Fred Foster, Roy Orbison, Johnny Cash)
Pericoma Okoye, Nigerian singer
Maurice Vander, French jazz pianist
Phil Williams, co-founder of the Seattle Folklife festival
Alan Aldridge, graphic designer (A Quick One, Captain Fantastic)
Peter Skellern, British singer, songwriter and pianist (“You’re a Lady”)
Clyde Stubblefield, funk drummer (James Brown)
Larry Coryell, jazz guitarist
Ilene Berns, record company executive (Bang Records)
Leah Adler, concert pianist and mother of Steven Spielberg
Enzo Carella, Italian singer and songwriter
Steve Clark, tap dancer (The Clark Brothers)
Horace Parlan, jazz pianist
Leon Ware, soul songwriter, producer and singer
Fumio Karashima, Japanese jazz pianist
Don Markham, saxophonist and trumpeter (The Strangers)
Rich Chavez, metal guitarist (Drive)
Eric Miller, jazz producer (Pablo Records)
Toshio Nakanishi, Japanese musician (Plastics) and graphic designer
Ronnie Allen, bluegrass musician (Allen Brothers)
G.C. McCoury, bluegrass musician and brother of Del McCoury
Ric Marlow, songwriter (“A Taste of Honey”)

Mike Barhorst, concert promoter (Country Concert in the Hills)
Chisai Childs, entertainer, broadcaster and talent scout (Branson, MO)
Hiroshi Kamayatsu, Japanese rock guitarist and singer (The Spiders)
Gustav Metzger, artist and mentor to Pete Townshend
Wally Pikal, trumpeter and band leader
Paul Abler, jazz guitarist
Roberta Alloisio, Italian singer and songwriter
Jim Fuller, rock guitarist (The Surfaries)
Misha Mengelberg, Dutch jazz pianist
Tommy Page, singer and songwriter (“I’ll Be Your Everything” “The Shag”)
Lyle Ritz, bassist (The Wrecking Crew) and ukulelist
Valerie Carter, singer and backing singer (James Taylor)
Edi Fitzroy, Jamaican reggae singer
Winfried Schrammek, German organist and musicologist
Fiora Corradetti Contino, opera maestro
Ante Perković, Croation music critic
Fred Weintraub, club owner (The Bitter End), film and television producer
Lars Diedricson, Swedish singer (Snowstorm) and songwriter
Robbie Hoddinott, rock guitarist (Kingfish)
Hurshel Wiginton, session singer (The Nashville Edition)
Kalika Prasad Bhattacharya, Indian folk singer
Jonathan Strasser, violinist, educator and actor (Fame)
Dave Valentin, jazz flutist
Junior Barber, resonator guitarist
Barbara Helsingius, Finnish folk singer
Tony Lorenzo, death metal guitarist
Joni Sledge, R&B singer (Sister Sledge)
Evan Johns, roots-rock guitarist (The LeRoi Brothers)
Ángel Parra, Chilean singer and songwriter
Ray Sponaugle, bluegrass fiddler
Don Warden, steel guitarist (Porter Wagoner) and manager (Dolly Parton)
Joey Alves, rock guitarist (Y&T)
Maxx Kidd, soul singer, producer and promoter
John Lever, British rock drummer (The Chameleons)
Tommy LiPuma, producer and label executive
Ileana Ciuculete, Romanian folk singer
Phil Garland, New Zealand folk musician
Aloysius “Lucky” Gordon, Jamaican jazz singer
Wojciech Młynarski, Polish poet, singer and songwriter
James Cotton, blues harmonica player
Roberta Knie, operatic soprano
Vernon McQueen, bluegrass musician and singer (Blue Grass Boys)
Faye McGinnis, radio broadcaster & head of the Stanley Brothers fan club
Chuck Berry, rock ‘n’ roll singer, guitarist and songwriter
Clarece Candamio, church organist
Don Hunstein, photographer (The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan)
Buck Hill, jazz saxophonist
Tony Terran, trumpeter (Desi Arnaz Orchestra, The Wrecking Crew)
Chuck Barris, television producer and host, songwriter (“Palisades Park”)
Roy Fisher, British poet and jazz pianist
Inao Jiro, Indonesian artist manager (JKT48)
Gabriel Mafa, Romanian folk-metal drummer (Negură Bunget)
Sib Hashian, rock drummer (Boston)
Sven-Erik Magnusson, Swedish singer (Sven-Ingvars)
VIncent Falcone, pianist and music director (Frank Sinatra)
André Larson, musicologist and founder of the National Music Museum
Buddy Pendleton, bluegrass fiddler (Greenbriar Boys, Blue Grass Boys)
Peter Shotton, washboard player (The Quarrymen) and Apple Corps exec
Mary Tortorich, voice teacher
Avo Uvezian, jazz pianist and cigar maker
Hovie Walker, gospel singer
Allan Weiss, screenwriter (Roustabout, Blue Hawaii)
Alessandro Alessandroni, composer, multi-instrumentalist and whistler
Jimmy Dotson, blues singer, guitarist and drummer
Věra Špinarová, Czech singer
Endrik Wottrich, German tenor
Arthur Blythe, jazz saxophonist
Clem Curtis, British pop singer (“Now That I’ve Found You”)
Edward Grimes, post-rock drummer (Rachel’s)
Aldo Guibovich, Peruvian pop singer (Los Pasteles Verdes)
Rosie Hamlin, pop singer (Rosie and the Originals)

Lonnie Brooks, blues guitarist and singer
Bob Cunningham, jazz bassist
Ikutaro Kakehashi, Japanese engineer and entrepreneur (Roland)
Louis Sarno, musicologist
Vivienne de Silva Boralessa, Sri Lankan singer
Warren “Rhubarb” Jones, radio broadcaster (WYAY-FM)
Kishori Amonkar, Indian classical singer
L.A. Dre, hip-hop producer, keyboardist and sound engineer
Brenda Jones, R&B singer (The Jones Girls)
Leo J. Baroi, Bangladeshi singer
Ryo Kagawa, Japanese folk singer
Paul O’Neill, rock producer and songwriter (Trans-Siberian Orchestra)
David Peel, rock singer and political activist
Joseph Rascoff, business manager and tour producer (Rolling Stones)
Glenn O’Brien, writer and editor (Interview, Rolling Stone, GQ, Spin)
Ben Speer, gospel singer, pianist, producer, publisher and educator
Yuushi Matsuyama, film composer
Brian Matthew, British radio and television broadcaster (Saturday Club)
Kim Plainfield, jazz drummer
Keni Richards, rock drummer (Autograph)
Jan Elliott, tour manager and lighting director
Alan Henderson, Northen Irish bassist (Them)
Stan Robinson, British jazz saxophonist and flautist
Bob Wootton, country guitarist (Johnny Cash’s Tennessee Three)
David Angel, British violinist (Maggini Quartet, London Mozart Players)
Banner Thomas, rock bassist (Molly Hatchet)
Eric Cook, artist manager (Venom)
Eddy Fondo, Kenyan radio broadcaster
J. Geils, rock guitarist
Scotty Miller, funk drummer (Instant Funk)
Toby Smith, keyboardist (Jamiroquai)
Kathleen Cassello, operatic soprano
Tom Coyne, Grammy-winning mastering engineer
Peggy Hayama, Japanese singer
Barry Smith, rock drummer (Lee Michaels, Sweathog, Soulhat)
Mika Vainio, Finnish electronic musician (Pan Sonic)
José Miguel Class, Puerto Rican singer
Martín Elías, Colombian vallenato singer and songwriter
Bruce Langhorne, folk guitarist and tambourine man
Allan Holdsworth, British guitarist (Soft Machine, U.K., Gong)
Matt Holt, heavy metal singer (Nothingface, Kingdom of Snakes)
Sylvia Moy, songwriter (“My Cherie Amour”) and producer
Willy Cruz, Filipino songwriter and music producer
Frank Dostal, German rock singer (The Rattles), songwriter and producer
Gordon Langford, English pianist, composer and arranger
Nona Liddell, British violinist
Dick Contino, accordionist
Pat Fitzpatrick, Irish keyboardist (Aslan)
Cuba Gooding Sr., soul singer (The Main Ingredient)
Trustin Howard, singer, actor and writer
Tammy Sullivan, bluegrass singer and bassist
Bill Tolley, death metal drummer (Internal Bleeding)
Lucky Akhand, Bangladeshi singer and composer
Sandy Gallin, talent agent (Barbra Streisand) and producer
Kristine Jepson, mezzo-soprano
Jerry Adriani, Brazilian singer and actor
Calep Emphrey Jr., blues drummer (B.B. King)
Erik Martin, German songwriter (“When the Evening Approaches”)
Eduard Brunner, Swiss clarinetist
John Shifflett, jazz double bassist and teacher
Zoe Realla, rapper
Andrew Tyler, rock journalist (NME) an animal rights activist
Belchior, Brazilian singer and composer
Bill Bryson, bassist and singer (The Desert Rose Band)
June LeBell, classical radio broadcaster (WQXR-FM)
Gil Wright, country and pop singer (Anita Kerr Singers)

Katy Bødtger, Danish singer
Bruce Hampton, guitarist, singer and songwriter (Hampton Grease Band)
Erkki Kurenniemi, Finnish electronic musician
Tony Alamo, convicted child abuser, singer and costumer (Dolly Parton)
Kevin Garcia, alt-rock bassist (Grandaddy)
Péter Komlós, Hungarian violinist
Grigori Zhislin, Russian violinist and teacher
Charles Hoffer, music educator and author
C’el Revuelta, rock bassist (Black Flag)
Saxa, Jamaican saxophonist (The Beat)
Mario Maglieri, nightclub owner (Rainbow, Roxy, Whisky A Go Go)
Clive Brooks, British drummer (Egg) and drum technician (Pink Floyd)
Almir Guineto, Brazilian sambista, singer and instrumentalist
Dave Pell, jazz saxophonist, bandleader and label executive (Liberty)
Dr. Benjamin Caldwell, preservationist (Ryman Auditorium)
Kelley Sallee Snead, country songwriter and singer
Mary Tsoni, Greek actress and singer (Mary and the Boy)
Gerry Lacoursiere, record company executive (A&M Canada, Polygram)
Robert Miles, Swiss DJ, composer and producer (“Children”)
Michael Parks, actor and singer
Joy Byers, country and pop songwriter (“What’s A Matter Baby”)
William David Brohn, music arranger and orchestrator (Miss Saigon)
Corki Casey, session guitarist (“The Fool” “Rebel Rouser”)
İbrahim Erkal, Turkish singer and songwriter
Bob Forshee, country songwriter
Joachim Kaiser, German musicologist and editor
Corki Casey O’Dell, rock ‘n’ roll guitarist (Duane Eddy)
Bill Dowdy, jazz drummer (The Three Sounds)
Jimmy Copley, English session drummer
Earl Sinks, singer, songwriter, guitarist, actor and producer
Steve Sutton, bluegrass banjo player
Daniel Brewbaker, composer and poet
Tom McClung, jazz pianist
Keith Mitchell, drummer (Mazzy Star)
Derek Poindexter, bassist (The Waynes)
Rosa Nell Speer, gospel singer (Speer Family)
Kevin Stanton, New Zealand rock guitarist and songwriter (Mi-Sex)
Chris Cornell, singer and songwriter (Soundgarden, Audioslave)
Frankie Paul, Jamaican reggae singer
Kid Vinil, Brazilian rock singer, songwriter and radio broadcaster
Natalia Shakhovskaya, Russian cellist
Kenny Cordray, blues-rock guitarist and songwriter
Wendell Goodman, songwriter, manager and husband of Wanda Jackson
Leo Kristi, Indonesian singer
Jimmy LaFave, singer, songwriter and guitarist
George Reiff, bassist and record producer
Curtis Womack, soul singer (The Valentinos)
Barbara Smith Conrad, opera singer
Mickey Roker, jazz drummer
Zbigniew Wodecki, Polish singer and songwriter
Irio De Paula, Brazilian guitarist and composer
Saucy Silvia, Canadian comedian, singer and pianist
Wajahat Attre, Pakistani film composer
Gregg Allman, singer, songwriter and musician
Ken Ackerman, radio broadcaster (KFBK, KCBS)
Elisabeth Chojnacka, Polish harpsichordist
Marcus Intalex, British disc jockey, radio broadcaster and producer
David Lewiston, British field recordist and world music collector
Naomi Martin, country songwriter (“My Eyes Can Only See As Far As You”)

James Watson, clawhammer banjo player
Aamir Zaki, Pakistani rock guitarist and songwriter
Educated Rapper, rapper (UTFO)
Blake Johnson, bluegrass vocalist and multi-instrumentalist
Skipp Pearson, jazz saxophonist, educator and band director
Vin Garbutt, British folk singer and songwriter
Sandra Reemer, Indo-Dutch singer
Paul Zukofsky, violinist and conductor
Jan Høiland, Norwegian singer
Prince Udaya Priyantha, Sri Lankan singer and songwriter
Norro Wilson, country music songwriter, producer and industry executive
Nigel Grainge, British music industry executive (Phonogram, Ensign)
Corneliu Stroe, Romanian jazz drummer and percussionist
Rosalie Sorrels, folk singer
Ben Eyestone, rock drummer (The Lonely H)
Philip Gossett, musicologist
Luis Abanto Morales, Peruvian singer and songwriter
Sheila Raye Charles, singer, songwriter and daughter of Ray Charles
Jacques Charpentier, French composer and organist
Kyla Greenbaum, British pianist
Harry Prime, big band singer
Howard Stark, record industry executive (ABC Records, MTM Records)
Eliza Clívia, Brazilian singer
Thara Memory, jazz trumpeter, bandleader and educator
Chris Murrell, jazz singer
Bob Heatherly, record industry executive
Prodigy, rapper (Mobb Deep)
Ludger Rémy, German harpsichordist and conductor
Belton Richard, Cajun accordionist
Gunter Gabriel, German singer, musician, songwriter and producer
Jimmy Nalls, rock guitarist (Sea Level)
A.J. Nelson, country guitarist (Smokey Mountain Boys)
Donna Darlene, country singer
Dave Evans, bluegrass singer
Jimmy Chi, Australian playwright, composer and singer
Geri Allen, jazz pianist, composer and educator
Sudhin Das, Bangladeshi Nazrul Sangeet singer and teacher
Ruth Pearson, British dancer (Pan’s People)
Dave Rosser, rock guitarist (Afghan Whigs, Gutter Twins)
Phil Cohran, jazz composer and multi-instrumentalist
Gary DeCarlo, singer & songwriter (“Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye”)
Sabita Chowdhury, Indian singer
Yu Lun, Chinese film composer and songwriter
Karunamaya Goswami, Bangladeshi musicologist
M. Dung, radio broadcaster (KFOG)

Chris Roberts, German pop singer
Zdeněk Juračka, Czech rock guitarist
Rudy Rotta, Italian blues guitarist
John Blackwell, funk and jazz drummer (Prince)
Pierre Henry, French composer and musique concrète pioneer
Paul Hollingdale, British radio broadcaster (CNBC, Radio Luxembourg)
Melvyn “Deacon” Jones, blues organist & band director (John Lee Hooker)
Earl Clark, country songwriter (“Can’t Break It to My Heart”)
Claude Hall, editor for Billboard, creator of the term “easy listening”
Daniel Lewis, conductor (USC Thornton Symphony) and educator
Egil Monn-Iversen, Norwegian composer and pianist
Seiji Yokoyama, Japanese radio, television and anime composer
Paquita Rico, Spanish actress and singer
Sylvia Mobley, country singer
Luigi Ferdinando Tagliavini, Italian classical organist and educator
Imran Usmanov, Chechen folk singer
David Kapralik, A&R executive (Columbia, Epic)
Tamara Miansarova, Russian pop singer
Ray Phiri, South African jazz singer and guitarist
John Dalby, English composer, singer and musician
Fresh Kid Ice, rapper (2 Live Crew)
Simon Holmes, Australian singer and guitarist (The Hummingbirds)
Bill Hudson, pop and country guitarist (Light Crust Doughboys)
Giannis Kalatzis, Greek singer
Egil Kapstad, Norwegian jazz pianist, arranger and composer
Kayton Roberts, steel guitarist (Rainbow Ranch Boys)
Mahi Beamer, Hawaiian singer, pianist and organist
Bill Collings, luthier
Cookie Inman, country bassist (The All American Bluegrass Band)
Clara (Cuqui) Nicola, Cuban guitarist and educator
David Zablidowsky, bassist (Adrenaline Mob, Trans Siberian Orchestra)
Warrick L. Carter, music educator and college president
Roland Cazimero, Hawaiian guitarist, singer and songwriter
Régis Gizavo, Malagasy accordionist
Thor Lindsay, label founder (Tim/Kerr)
Wilfried, Austrian singer (“Lisa Mona Lisa“)
José Bragato, Italian-born Argentine cellist and composer
Red West, actor, songwriter & member of Elvis Presley’s Memphis Mafia
Peter Principle Dachert, American bassist
Blaoui Houari, Algerian singer and songwriter
Fenwick Smith, flutist (Boston Symphony Orchestra)
Barbara Weldens, French singer
Graham Wood, Australian jazz pianist
Chester Bennington, singer and songwriter (Linkin Park)
Wilindoro Cacique, Peruvian Amazonian cumbia musician
Andrea Jürgens, German schlager singer
Errol Dyers, South African jazz guitarist and composer
Cune Gojković, Serbian singer
Geoff Mack, Australian singer and songwriter (“I’ve Been Everywhere”)
Kenny Shields, Canadian rock singer (Streetheart)
Paapa Yankson, Ghanaian highlife musician
Polo Hofer, Swiss rock singer and songwriter
Kommanduri Krishnamachari, Indian violinist
Ernst Ottensamer, Austrian clarinetist
Jan Stulen, Dutch conductor
Bobby Taylor, Canadian soul singer & Motown producer (The Jackson 5)
Thomas Füri, Swiss violinist and educator
Amir Fryszer Guttman, Israeli singer
Abby Nicole, country singer
Zoi Fitoussi, Greek actress and singer
Michael Johnson, pop and country singer, songwriter and guitarist
Ivana Loudová, Czech composer
Barbara Sinatra, model and fourth wife of Frank Sinatra
Billy Joe Walker Jr., country songwriter, guitarist and record producer
Geoffrey Yunupingu, Australian indigenous singer and songwriter
Paul Angerer, Austrian violist, composer and conductor
D.L. Menard, Cajun musician
Gilles Tremblay, Canadian composer and educator
Steve Chapman, bluegrass and country guitarist
H. Sayeeduddin Dagar, Indian Dhrupad singer
Chuck Loeb, jazz guitarist and composer (Fourplay, Steps Ahead)

Goldy McJohn, Canadian keyboardist (Steppenwolf)
Skapti Ólafsson,Icelandic rock and jazz musician
Raiman Rai, Nepalese singer
Patrick Thomas, Australian conductor
Tony Cohen, Australian record producer (Nick Cave, Bad Seeds)
Daniel Licht, television and film composer (Dexter)
Luiz Melodia, Brazilian singer and songwriter
Jessy Serrata, Tejano musician
Lee Blakeley, opera and theatre director
Ralph Lewis, bluegrass musician (Blue Grass Boys)
Tim Homer, New Zealander radio broadcaster
Walter Levin, classical violinist (LaSalle Quartet)
David Maslanka, composer
Arleta, Greek folk singer, songwriter and illustrator
Glen Campbell, singer, guitarist, television host and film actor
Barbara Cook, singer and actress (The Music Man)
Pēteris Plakidis, Latvian composer and pianist
Janet Seidel, Australian cabaret singer and pianist
Ed Greene, Emmy-winning sound mixer
Marián Varga, Slovak organist and composer
Xavier Benguerel Godó, Spanish composer
Segun Bucknor, Nigerian afro-pop musician and journalist
Daisy Sweeney, Canadian music educator
Ivo Pavlík, Czech composer, keyboardist and clarinetist
Benard Ighner, jazz and pop singer, songwriter and producer
Robert Yancy, drummer and son of Natalie Cole
Zhu Jian’er, Chinese composer
Pavel Egorov, Russian classical pianist and educator
Jo Walker-Meador, former exec director of the Country Music Association
Jesse Boyce, R&B and gospel musician (FAME Gang)
Sonny Burgess, rockabilly guitarist, singer and songwriter
Leon Douglas, country singer (Grand Ol’ Opry, Wheeling Jamboree)
Concha Valdes Miranda, Cuban composer
Bea Wain, big band singer
Dave Wheeler, record company executive (RCA)
Margot Hielscher, German singer and film actress
Wilhelm Killmayer, German composer and conductor
Fredell Lack, violinist and educator
Jerry Lewis, comedian, actor, humanitarian and singer
Nati Mistral, Spanish actress and singer
Seija Simola, 73, Finnish singer
John Abercrombie, jazz guitarist
Aloys Kontarsky, German pianist
Pete Kuykendall, bluegrass banjoist, songwriter, producer and journalist
Winston Samuels, Jamaican ska musician (The Aces)
Enzo Dara, Italian opera singer
Nathan Condon, Canadian fiddler
Wilson das Neves, Brazilian percussionist and singer
René Tuček, Czech opera singer and educator
Melissa Bell, English R&B singer (Soul II Soul)
Denis Richard, Canadian singer and songwriter
Dmitri Kogan, Russian violinist
Larry Elgart, saxophonist and bandleader (“American Bandstand Theme”)
Abdul Jabbar, Bangladeshi singer
Skip Prokop, Canadian drummer (Lighthouse) and radio broadcaster
L.N. Shastri, Indian playback singer and composer
Norman Maclean, Scottish comedian, singer and piper

Hedley Jones, Jamaican musician, audio engineer and inventor
Novella Nelson, actress and singer
Mick Softley, British singer, songwriter and guitarist
Halim El-Dabh, Egyptian-born composer and ethnomusicologist
Murray Lerner, documentary filmmaker
Harry Sandler, tour manager and photographer
Walter Becker, bassist, guitarist, songwriter and producer (Steely Dan)
John Byrne Cooke, author and musician (Charles River Valley Boys)
Dave Hlubek, rock guitarist and songwriter (Molly Hatchet)
Earl Lindo, Jamaican reggae musician (The Wailers)
Leo Cuypers, Dutch jazz pianist and composer
Holger Czukay, German multi-instrumentalist (Can)
Rick Stevens, R&B singer (Tower of Power)
Derek Bourgeois, English composer
Rosa Judge, Maltese musician
Jim Rollins, bluegrass banjo player
Troy Gentry, country singer (Montgomery Gentry)
Josh Schwartz, singer, guitarist and songwriter (Beachwood Sparks)
Don Williams, country singer and songwriter
Michael Friedman, composer and lyricist (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson)
Xavier Atencio, animator, lyricist and Imagineer (Pirates of the Caribbean)
Sir Peter Hall, British theatre, opera and film director
Virgil Howe, British drummer (Little Barrie)
Frank Capp, jazz drummer
Riem de Wolff, Dutch-Indonesian singer (The Blue Diamonds)
Siegfried Köhler, German conductor
Jessi Zazu, singer, guitarist and songwriter (Those Darlins)
Alla Tarán, Ukrainian violinist and educator
Lil Ameer, Nigerian hip-hop singer and songwriter
Grant Hart, drummer and songwriter (Hüsker Dü), guitarist and singer
Judy Parker Gaudio, songwriter (“December 1963 (Oh What a Night)”)
Ben Dorcy, roadie (Hank Thompson, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash)
Brenda Lewis, operatic soprano and actress
Laudir de Oliveira, Brazilian musician (Sérgio Mendes) and producer
Mark Selby, singer, songwriter (“There’s Your Trouble”) and guitarist
André Van den Meersschaut, Belgian singer and guitarist (The Cousins)
Speedy Tolliver, banjo and fiddle player
Leonid Kharitonov, Russian opera singer
Reggie Lavong, radio broadcaster and record industry executive
Johnny Sandlin, engineer, producer (Allman Brothers Band) and drummer
Cees Bergman, Dutch rock singer (Catapult) and producer
Johnny Burke, Canadian country singer
Guy Villari, American singer (The Regents, “Barbara Ann”)
Mike Carr, English jazz keyboard player
Eric Eycke, rock singer (Corrosion of Conformity)
Harold Pendleton, British club owner (Marquee) and festival organizer
Rick Shaw, radio broadcaster (WQAM)
Ammon Tharp, soul and pop drummer (Bill Deal and the Rhondels)
Charles Bradley, soul singer
Seth Firkins, audio engineer (Future, Jay-Z, Young Thug)
Caesar Giovannini, composer and pianist
Tsisana Tatishvili, Georgian opera singer
Jack Good, British producer (Shindig!), musician and manager
Ken Stilts, artist manager (The Judds) and record label founder
Gérard Palaprat, French singer and songwriter
Folke Rabe, Swedish composer and trombonist
Elaine Hoffman Watts, klezmer drummer
Barry Dennen, actor and singer (Jesus Christ Superstar)
Paul Rodriguez, sound industry executive
CeDell Davis, blues singer and guitarist
Joy Fleming, German singer (Eurovision Song Contest 1975)
Zuzana Růžičková, Czech harpsichordist
Alan Thompson, British broadcaster (BBC Radio Wales)
Dmitry Smolsky, Belarusian composer and teacher
Rob “Apex” Dickeson, drum’n’bass producer and DJ
Tom Paley, folk singer and musician (New Lost City Ramblers)

Kenny Beard, country songwriter, manager and producer
Skip Haynes, musician and songwriter (“Lake Shore Drive”)
Klaus Huber, Swiss composer and academic
Azra Kolaković, Bosnian pop singer
Tom Petty, rock singer, guitarist and songwriter
Janis Hansen, singer (Brasil ‘66) and author
Jerry Ross, producer, songwriter and record label executive
Alvin DeGuzman, post-hardcore guitarist (The Icarus Line)
Aubrey Holt, bluegrass singer, songwriter and guitarist
Borislav Oslovčan, Serbian bassist (Pekinška Patka)
Monojit Datta, Indian Latin percussionist, composer and lyricist
Lou Gare, English jazz saxophonist
Walter “Bunny” Sigler, songwriter and record producer (O’Jays)
Jimmy Beaumont, singer and songwriter (The Skyliners)
Jan Arvid Johansen, Norwegian musician
Coriún Aharonián, Uruguayan composer and musicologist
László Aradszky, Hungarian pop singer
Grady Tate, jazz drummer and singer
Chester R. Green, food company executive (Kraft Music Hall)
Vincent La Selva, conductor and founder of the New York Grand Opera
Reggie Joseph “Mac” McLaughlin, booking agent
Terry Elam, artist manager (Roy Orbison, Vince Gill)
Andy McGhee, jazz saxophonist
Richard Adam, Czech swing singer
Dave Bry, music journalist and editor (Vibe, Spin, The Awl)
Fedor Glushchenko, Russian conductor and violinist
Antonín Matzner, Czech music historian, publisher and producer
Augustin Mawangu Mingiedi, Congolese bandleader and likembist
Iain Shedden, Scottish-Australian musician (The Saints) and journalist
Heather Slade-Lipkin, English pianist, harpsichordist and teacher
Howard Carroll, gospel guitarist (Dixie Hummingbirds)
Harshita Dahiya, Indian singer
Gord Downie, Canadian singer and songwriter (The Tragically Hip)
Ingvar Lidholm, Swedish composer
Eamonn Campbell, Irish guitarist and singer (The Dubliners)
Phil Miller, English rock guitarist (Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North)
Boris Lindqvist, Swedish rock singer
Martin Eric Ain, heavy metal bassist (Hellhammer, Celtic Frost)
Atle Hammer, Norwegian jazz musician
Al Hurricane, singer and songwriter
Emu Lehtinen, Finnish record dealer
Scott Putesky, rock guitarist (Marilyn Manson)
George Young, Australian musician (Easybeats), songwriter and producer
Girija Devi, Indian thumri singer
Fats Domino, pianist, singer and songwriter
Robert Guillaume, actor and singer
Larry Ray, rock guitarist (Outrageous Cherry)
Juliette, Canadian singer and television host
Shea Norman, gospel singer
Brian Galliford, British opera singer
Mike Hudson, punk rock guitarist and singer (The Pagans) and journalist
Dick Noel, band and jingle singer
Rob Potts, Australian country music promoter
Bruce Black, metal drummer (Meliah Rage)
Landy Gardner, choir director (Christ Church Choir)
Billy Mize, steel guitarist, band leader and singer
Mitchell Peters, timpanist, composer and teacher
Gert Timmerman, Dutch singer
Orville Almon, Jr., music and entertainment attorney
Muhal Richard Abrams, jazz pianist and composer
Metin Ersoy, Turkish singer
Raúl García Zárate, Peruvian guitarist
Frank Holder, Guyanese jazz singer and percussionist
Keith Wilder, funk and disco singer (Heatwave)
Theo Bophela, South African jazz pianist, composer and pianist
Lajos Som, Hungarian rock bassist (Piramis)
Daniel Viglietti, Uruguayan folk singer, guitarist and songwriter
Papi Oviedo, Cuban tresero

Katie Lee, folk singer
Roland Verlooven, Belgian producer
María Martha Serra Lima, Argentine ballad and bolero singer
Gaetano Bardini, Italian opera singer,
Václav Riedlbauch, Czech composer, pedagogue and manager
Isabel Granada, Filipino actress and singer
Dudley Simpson, Australian composer (Doctor Who) and conductor
Danny Anaya, heavy metal drummer (XM Machine, Abbatoir)
Robert Knight, R&B singer (“Everlasting Love”, “Love on a Mountain Top”)
Louis Roney, opera singer
Wim Brussen, Dutch bandleader
Paul Buckmaster, English arranger (David Bowie, Elton John)
Robert De Cormier, singer and composer (Belafonte Folk Singers)
Wendell Eugene, jazz trombonist
Pentti Glan, Finnish-Canadian drummer (Alice Cooper, Lou Reed)
Karel Štědrý, Czech singer, actor, screenwriter and presenter
Gilbert Rouget, French ethnomusicologist
Fred Cole, rock singer and guitarist (The Lollipop Shoppe, Dead Moon)
Chuck Mosley, rock singer (Faith No More, Bad Brains) and songwriter
Hans Vermeulen, Dutch singer, guitarist and producer (Sandy Coast)
Chiquito de la Calzada, Spanish singer, actor and comedian
Frank Corsaro, opera director and actor
Helen Borgers, jazz disc jockey
Michel Chapuis, French classical organist
Chad Hanks, rock bassist (American Head Charge)
Eric Salzman, composer, producer and critic
Luis Bacalov, Argentine-born Italian composer (Il Postino, Kill Bill)
Bonnie Flower, rock singer, songwriter and drummer (Wendy and Bonnie)
Lil Peep, rapper
Wabi Daněk, Czech folk musician
MIchael “Dik Mik” Davies, English keyboard player (Hawkwind)
Al Neil, Canadian jazz pianist and club founder (Cellar Jazz Club)
William Mayer, composer
Joey Scinta, 69, bassist and Las Vegas entertainer (The Scintas)
Ben Riley, jazz drummer (Thelonious Monk, Kenny Barron, Sphere)
Malcolm Young, Scottish-born Australian guitarist & songwriter (AC/DC)
Claudio Báez, Mexican actor and singer
Ronnie Butler, Bahamian singer and entertainer
Aleksandër Lalo, Albanian composer
Warren “Pete” Moore, singer (The Miracles) and songwriter
Della Reese, actress and singer
Mel Tillis, country singer and songwriter
Laila Sari, Indonesian singer and actress
David Cassidy, singer, guitarist, songwriter and actor
Wayne Cochran, soul singer and songwriter
John Preston, record industry executive (EMI, Decca, Polydor, RCA, BMG)
George Avakian, record producer and executive
John Coates Jr., jazz pianist
Jon Hendricks, jazz singer and songwriter (Lambert, Hendricks & Ross)
Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Siberian opera singer
Shawn Jones, gospel singer
Tommy Keene, rock singer, guitarist and songwriter
Carol Neblett, operatic soprano
Bari Siddiqui, Bangladeshi singer, flautist and songwriter
Dimitri Sjöberg, Finnish tango singer
A.D. Washington, record industry executive (MCA, Warner Brothers)
Mitch Margo, singer and songwriter (The Tokens)
Clotilde Rosa, Portuguese harpist
Enrico Boccadoro, Italian singer and songwriter
Oscar Alem, Argentine pianist and composer
Patrick Bourgeois, Canadian musician (Les B.B.)
Narayanrao Bodas, Indian singer
Robert “Pops” Popwell, bassist (The Young Rascals, The Crusaders)
Magín Díaz, Colombian folk singer and songwriter
Shadia, Egyptian actress and singer
Robert Walker, blues musician
Jim Nabors, actor, comedian and singer
Zé Pedro, Portuguese guitarist (Xutos & Pontapés)

Maelé, Equatorial Guinean singer
William Blankenship, operatic tenor
Norihiko Hashida, Japanese folk singer and songwriter
Mundell Lowe, jazz guitarist and composer
Kalachand Darbesh, Indian singer
Cherry Taketani, Brazilian singer and guitarist
Purabi Mukhopadhyay, Indian singer
Carles Santos, Spanish pianist and composer
Adithyan, Indian composer
Ted Simons, composer, arranger and musical director
Johnny Hallyday, French rock singer
Magnus Bergdahl, Swedish guitarist (Thorleifs)
Žermēna Heine-Vāgnere, Latvian opera singer
Sunny Murray, jazz drummer (Cecil Taylor, Albert Ayler)
Sir Christus, Finnish rock guitarist (Negative)
Kuno Areng, Estonian choir director
Vincent Nguini, Cameroonian guitarist (Paul Simon)
Lando Fiorini, Italian actor and singer
Heitaro Nakajima, Japanese digital audio pioneer
Leon Rhodes, country guitarist
Manno Charlemagne, Haitian singer, songwriter, guitarist and politician
Bill Hearn, record industry executive (Capitol Christian Music Group)
Pat DiNizio, rock singer, guitarist and songwriter (The Smithereens)
Harry Sparnaay, Dutch bass clarinetist
Warrel Dane, rock singer (Sanctuary, Nevermore)
Rory O’Donoghue, Australian singer, songwriter, guitarist and actor
Willie Pickens, jazz pianist
Jack Boyle, concert promoter (Cellar Door Concerts) and club owner
Dave Christenson, pop singer and songwriter (Stabilizers)
John Critchinson, English jazz pianist
Ralph Carney, saxophonist (Tin Huey, Tom Waits) and composer
Richard Dobson, country singer and songwriter (“Baby Ride Easy”)
Juli Fábián, Hungarian singer and songwriter
Randy Hongo, Christian musician and minister
Michael Prophet, Jamaican reggae singer
Keely Smith, jazz and pop singer (“That Old Black Magic”)
Z’EV, percussionist and poet
Virginia Da Brescia, Italian actress and singer
Margaret Locicero, radio and record industry veteran
Kevin Mahogany, jazz singer
Rod Dibble, pianist and piano bar host (The Alley)
Jim Forrester, bass guitarist (Sixty Watt Shaman, Foghound)
Larry Harris, record label executive (Casablanca Records)
Kim Jong-hyun, South Korean singer, songwriter and radio host
Manuel Moneo, Spanish singer.
Leo Welch, blues musician
Reggie “Combat Jack” Ossé, music journalist (The Source) and attorney
Dominic Frontiere, composer (The Outer Limits, Hang ‘Em High)
Halvard Kausland, Norwegian jazz guitarist
Jatileswar Mukhopadhyay, Indian singer
Roswell Rudd, jazz trombonist
Marilyn Tyler, opera singer
Pam the Funkstress, hip hop DJ (The Coup, Prince)
Jim Burns, television executive (MTV Unplugged)
Jordan Feldstein, artist manager (Maroon 5)
George Maida, radio broadcaster (WCVE)
André Di Cesare, Canadian music producer
Robbie Malinga, South African musician and producer
Vladimir Shainsky, Russian composer
Curly Seckler, bluegrass musician (Foggy Mountain Boys, Nashville Grass)
Rose Marie, actress, comedienne and singer
Melton Mustafa, jazz trumpeter (Count Basie Orchestra, Duke Ellington)
Chingiz Sadykhov, Azerbaijani pianist

Chris Bell: Looking Forward / I Am the Cosmos / Complete

December 30th, 2017

The most detailed look yet at Chris Bell before and after Big Star

Chris Bell’s untimely death in 1978 not only robbed the world of his musical greatness, but also froze his artistic assets. A full appraisal of his art was retarded by the paucity of available recorded material that lingered for many years after his passing. Big Star’s debut, #1 Record, despite the contemporaneous critical praise and retrospective glory lavished upon it, had been poorly distributed at the time of its 1972 release. Reissued in 1978, apparently to Bell’s delight, it’s imported manufacture delegated it to specialty shops. That same year, Bell’s solo single, “I Am the Cosmos,” was released on Chris Stamey’s Car label, but it would be fourteen more years until Ryko’s 1992 full-length I Am the Cosmos really started to flesh out the Chris Bell story. By then, Big Star had become an iconic reference among 1980s indie pop bands, and with Alex Chilton’s new Big Star formation in 1993, interest in Bell continued to grow.

The next cache of Bell material to turn up were pre-Big Star recordings by The Jynx, Rock City, Christmas Future and Icewater on collections dedicated to Big Star and the Ardent label. In 2009, Rhino Handmade provided further insight into Bell’s post-Big Star period with an expanded edition of I Am the Cosmos. Omnivore now pulls this all together, expanding upon what’s been excavated before with three new releases. First is the single CD Looking Forward: The Roots of Big Star, which adds six previously unissued tracks to the existing corpus of pre-Big Star material. Second is a deluxe reissue of I Am the Cosmos that adds eight tracks to the 2009 Rhino Handmade reissue. Third is an omnibus vinyl-only box set, The Complete Chris Bell, which collects the material from the first two sets, and adds an excerpt from Rich Tupica’s forthcoming biography, There Was a Light: The Cosmic History of Big Star Founder Chris Bell.

What’s immediately striking about the material on Looking Forward: The Roots of Big Star is how good it sounds. Ardent studio owner John Fry had the presence of mind to train a handful of musicians on recording technique, and let them practice in the studio’s down time. These sessions were free from the pressure of a studio clock or a label’s budget, and they allowed the musicians to explore their craft as players, engineers and producers. The six previously unreleased tracks include recordings by The Wallabys (“The Reason”) and Icewater (“A Chance to Live”) and four backing tracks. Big Star fans drawn to the backing track “Oh My Soul” will find it unrelated to the Chilton song of the same name, but the chugging groove is infectious and Bell’s guitar work superb. The unfinished “Germany” has fine vocal overdubs, and the gritty guitar on the alternate of “Feeling High” is terrific.

What shines through the early Ardent sessions is everyone’s unbridled enthusiasm, and for Chris Bell in particular, an optimism that had yet to be crushed under the weight of #1 Record’s commercial failure. From the earliest track, “Psychedelic Stuff,” through the British Invasion tones of the Wallabys, breakthrough compositions like “All I See is You,” and material that would be re-recorded by Big Star, everything rings with a sense of musicians chasing their muse, unencumbered by commercial considerations and with a growing sense that they could make music as meaningful and moving as their idols. Alec Palao’s liner notes include insightful interviews with John Fry, Steve Rhea, Terry Manning, Alan Palmore, Jody Stephens, Tom Eubanks, providing detail on the scene, sessions and tracks.

The eight tracks added to I Am the Cosmos include alternate versions, backing tracks and mixes that provide the final clues as to the journey Bell’s songs took throughout his lifetime. As Alec Palao notes, “unless some new studio sessions come to light in the future, [this set] is essentially the last word on the work of this quixotic talent.” Omnivore relocates the Icewater and Rock City tracks Rhino added in 2009 to a more natural spot on Looking Forward, and adds several mixes from the Big Star documentary Nothing Can Hurt Me. Bob Mehr’s liner notes tell of Bell’s spiritual, musical and geographical odysseys to record, overdub, mix and find a record deal. Alec Palao’s track notes further dissect Bell’s artistic restlessness by piecing together details of his intercontinental quest for perfection.

The avalanche of material that’s been posthumously released on Big Star, Chris Bell and Alex Chilton might feel Elvis- or Jimi-like, had the band not been so thoroughly ignored in their prime. The drive to learn how these artists came to produce #1 Record, Radio City and Third, and what became of them afterwards is delayed discovery rather than morbid curiosity. The books, documentary, reissues, best-ofs, box sets, archival artifacts, resurrections, reunions, and tribute performances might overwhelm lesser artists. But in the case of Chris Bell, the before and after provide a surround that magnifies the all-too-brief artistic flame. Those new to the Big Star canon should start with their albums, those who’ve already imbibed will want to dig the roots and the afterwards, and those who’ve already thoroughly explored the periphery will find something of value in upgrading. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Alex Chilton: A Man Called Destruction

December 27th, 2017

Reissue of Chilton’s 1995 album of deep covers and R&B originals

Alex Chilton had an on-again-off-again relationship with accessibility. His earliest hits with the Box Tops, and his initial work with Big Star were tightly produced and memorably tuneful records that were easy on the ears. But his third album with Big Star and several of his solo releases seemed to be deliberately challenging. While some fans are enervated by the search for charm among the controlled chaos, others would favor the label “masterpiece” over “hot mess.” By the time of 1987’s High Priest, Chilton had begun to lean heavily on an eccentric catalog of R&B and pop covers, culminating in 1993’s solo acoustic all-covers album, Cliches. 1995’s A Man Called Destruction picks up the idiosyncratic song selection and adds a band performance to a mix that feels less ironic than the crooning that came before.

There may still be a knowing wink in covering Danny Pearson’s “What’s Your Sign?,” but Chilton’s fascination with astrology is well known, and the affection for the song heard in his voice is clear. Placing he Italian rockabilly number “Il Ribelle” alongside Crescent City staples, and sandwiching a falsetto-laced cover of Jan & Dean’s “New Girl in School” between two hard-R&B originals may cause a bit of listener whiplash, it suggests the jumble of influences that seeded Chilton’s musical genius. Omnivore’s 2017 reissue adds seven bonus tracks to the albums original dozen, including alternates, an off-the-cuff take on Clarence “Frogman” Henry’s “(I Don’t Know Why) But I Do” and several otherwise unreleased originals, including the memorable “Give It to Me Baby” and the jam-ready “You’re My Favorite.”

Recording in Memphis for Ardent, Chilton assembled a three-piece horn section of veterans Jim Spake and William “Nokie” Taylor, and newcomer Jim Spake. Spake was given the task of working out horn charts ahead of time. Chilton drew in his regular bassist Ron Easley, and two of his road drummers, alongside the organ playing of 22-year-old Al Gamble and Peabody Hotel pianist Bob Marbach. It was a surprising amount of intention for a Chilton session, and though the bonus tracks show some improvisation and in-studio development, Chilton came prepared with his songs ready to go. The results swing without devolving into loose ends, and Chilton sounds at ease with his material, band, guitar playing and singing, resulting in a session that wasn’t subject to the usual deconstruction. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Banditos: Visionland

December 27th, 2017

Southern rockers with twists of garage, psych and more

The second album from these Birmingham-to-Nashville transplants opens with a garage-rock sound that wasn’t as evident on their self-titled 2015 debut. Mary Beth Richardson’s bluesy vocals are given the context of San Francisco-sound powerhouses like the Jefferson Airplane, and though a banjo peeks through the haze, the ‘60s rock vibe is strong. The title track suggests a psych-rock Richard and Mimi Farina, the ballad “Healin’ Slow” has a ‘50s vibe, “Lonely Boy” might have been a country song written in the Brill Building, and the whispery “When It Rains” could be a fondly remembered ‘70s radio hit. The band seems to be democratic in exploring their influences, cross-pollinating without overwhelming the base flavor of each song. They’ve added new spices to the boogie, blues and soul of their debut and shown themselves to have both musical vision and reach. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Banditos Home Page

NRBQ: Happy Talk

December 27th, 2017

Playful new EP from the new NRBQ

Some of NRBQ’s longtime fans have a hard time accepting this revision of the band as legitimate, but with founding member Terry Adams at the helm, the new quartet has captured a chunk of the original band’s ethos as they move forward with new material. 2011’s Keep This Love Goin’ and 2014’s Brass Tacks each displayed the broad musical taste and sense of irreverence that were hallmarks of the earlier lineups. This five-song EP continues in the same direction with two originals, and covers of Roy Orbison, Rodgers & Hammerstein and the blues saxophonist, Abb Locke (“Blues Blues Blues”). The originals are playful novelties, while the covers are given original spins such as a tic-tac rhythm for “Only the Lonely” and the dreamy quality of “Happy Talk.” If it sounds a bit like a lark, that’s because amusement and adventure married to taste and musical chops have always been the band’s raison d’être, and that DNA has passed through to this revitalized quartet. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

NRBQ’s Home Page

Guided By Voices: Live From Austin TX

December 27th, 2017

Reissue of live double-CD and DVD

This tri-fold, slipcased set combines the previously released 2-CD and DVD editions, remixed and remastered (in 5.1 surround for the DVD), with new liner notes by Austin City Limits producer Terry Lickona. For fans, this is a nice souvenir of the original band’s end days. Recorded on November 9, 2004, the set captures GBV on their farewell tour, seven weeks before their final show, which was documented on the DVD release The Electrifying Conclusion. The set list includes five songs from their then-latest LP, Half Smiles of the Decomposed, and twenty-five more going all the way back to 1989’s “Navigating Flood Regions.” This date encapsulates everything that was both exhilarating and frustrating about Guided By Voices. The material remained inspired and the performances provocative, even as the band descended from tight and powerful to drunk and sloppy, but they were very drunk and sloppy by the time they got to the end of the set. This is familiar territory for GBV fans, and perhaps the most fitting epitaph the band could have recorded. It doesn’t reveal the band’s full musical glory, but it does tell their story. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Guided By Voices’ Home Page

Art Pepper: Presents West Coast Sessions! Volume 6 – Shelly Manne

December 26th, 2017

1981 pairing of Art Pepper and Shelly Manne reissued with bonuses

After a gap in the first half of the ‘70s, alto saxophonist and West Coast Jazz icon Art Pepper returned to recording. By decade’s end he was under contract with Galaxy, and when a small Japanese label came calling, he had to get creative. Unable to record for Atlas as a group leader, he picked session leaders and took credit only as a sideman. The albums were issued only in Japan, previously anthologized in the box set Hollywood All-Star Sessions, and are now being reissued by Omnivore with bonus tracks. Volume 6 is headlined by drummer Shelly Manne, backed by Bill Watrous (trombone), Bob Cooper (tenor sax), Pete Jolly (piano) and Monty Budwig (bass). The penultimate of Pepper’s session for Atlas, this was originally released as Hollywood Jam; Omnivore’s reissue adds one alternate session take.

Recorded in 1981 at Sage & Sound, Pepper’s next-to-last session for Atlas brings back two previous session leaders – Jolly (Vol. 2) and Watrous (Vol. 4) – as session players. As on the other volumes in the series, the set list sticks primarily to standards, with the one original being the group-developed “Hollywood Jam Blues.” With three horns and a talented pianist, the solos get passed around a bit more than on other sessions in this series. The smooth tone of Watrous’ trombone is particularly compelling, as is the contrast between Pepper and Cooper’s saxophones. Jolly offers some terrifically melodic playing, and Manne, though mostly remaining in the background as part of the rhythm section, is clearly in the driver’s seat. He single handedly sets the fast tempo of “Lover Come Back to Me” with his cymbal.

The album opens with all three horns interlacing on the introduction of “Just Friends” before each player is introduced with a solo. The album’s ballad, “These Foolish Things,” is sleepy, while “Limehouse Blues” is dreamlike. The closing “I’m Getting Sentimental Over You” is also presented as a bonus track in a longer, more expressive version that apparently wouldn’t fit on the original vinyl album. Omnivore’s reissue includes a 12-page booklet of photos, credits, studio diagrams and liner notes from Pepper’s widow, Laurie. Laurie Pepper has kept the flame of Art Pepper’s music alive through biography, blog and archival releases, and now with this series of reissues, an important chapter in Pepper’s career is revived. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Art Pepper on Bandcamp and CD Baby

Art Pepper: Presents West Coast Sessions! Volume 5 – Jack Sheldon

December 26th, 2017

1980 pairing of Art Pepper and Jack Sheldon reissued with bonuses

After a gap in the first half of the ‘70s, alto saxophonist and West Coast Jazz icon Art Pepper returned to recording. By decade’s end he was under contract with Galaxy, and when a small Japanese label came calling, he had to get creative. Unable to record for Atlas as a group leader, he picked session leaders and took credit only as a sideman. The albums were issued only in Japan, previously anthologized in the box set Hollywood All-Star Sessions, and are now being reissued by Omnivore with bonus tracks. Volume 5 is headlined by trumpeter Jack Sheldon, backed by Pepper’s road band of Milcho Leviev (piano), Tony Dumas (bass) and Carl Burnett (drums). The second of Pepper’s sessions for Atlas, this was originally released as Angel Wings; Ominvore’s reissues adds three alternate session takes and a version of “Historia De Un Amor” with Jack Sheldon’s vocal.

Recorded in 1980 at Sage & Sound, this was the only album in the run that paired Pepper with a trumpeter. Pepper and Sheldon had met up as young West Coast pups in the early ‘50s, and recorded together frequently. Though separated by Pepper’s prison and rehab time, and Sheldon’s acting career, they reconnected in the early ‘70s for gigs. As with all six titles in this Atlas-reissue series, the set list leans mostly on jazz standards, augmented by two original pieces from Pepper and one Pepper/Sheldon collaboration. The set opens with Pepper’s “Angel Wings,” revisiting the swinging arrangement the duo had recorded for 1956’s The Return of Art Pepper. The same album also provides the standard “Broadway” and the Pepper original, “Minority.” “Broadway” offers terrific interplay between the sax and trumpet, while “Minority” shows off its West Coast cool in a minor key.

The riff that animates “Jack’s Blues” is more sprightly than blue, with each player getting a chance to stretch out. Leviev is particularly playful on this track, and Dumas and Burnett riff at one another to nice effect. The album’s ballad, “Historia De Un Amor” is offered as both an instrumental and (as a bonus track) a vocal version. As pleasing as are Pepper and Sheldon’s uptempo exuberance, the soulfulness of their balladry is an album highlight. The vocal version was rescued from a cassette, and while it doesn’t match the fidelity of the masters, it’s a terrific addition. Omnivore’s reissue includes a 12-page booklet of photos, credits, studio diagrams and liner notes from Pepper’s widow, Laurie. Laurie Pepper has kept the flame of Art Pepper’s music alive through biography, blog and archival releases, and now with this series of reissues, an important chapter in Pepper’s career is revived. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Art Pepper on Bandcamp and CD Baby

The Foundations: The Best of the Foundations

December 24th, 2017

A legacy that’s richer than their four hits

This late-60s, multiethnic, multinational soul ensemble is best known to U.S. audiences for its two Top 40 singles, “Baby, Now That I’ve Found You” and “Build Me Up Buttercup.” Both hits, and a good deal of their other material, were co-written by producer Tony Macaulay, often with his regular writing partner John MacLeod. The band had two more hits in the UK (“Back on My Feet Again” and “In the Bad Bad Old Days (Before You Loved Me)”), as well as a number of minor chart entries, but after only four years, and numerous personnel changes, they packed it in. Various members toured and recorded under variations of “The Foundations” name throughout the 1970s, but it’s the original material from 1967-1970 that’s featured here. Varese has included all of the group’s A-sides for Pye (UK) and Uni (US), including the UK-only “Baby, I Couldn’t See” and US-only “My Little Chickadee,” a handful of B-sides and a pair of tracks from the band’s final album, Digging the Foundations.

The band’s 1967 introduction attached them to the backside of the British Invasion, and their association with Macauley gave their hits a pop breeziness. But their innate sound was more in line with Motown, Stax and American horn bands. Given the chance to record original material, the group showed off grittier soul, jazz and blues influences on the B-side “New Direction” and the late A-Side “I’m Gonna Be a Rich Man.” That said, they could also write bubblegum, such as the B-side “Solomon Grundy,” and they picked up sunshine pop tunes that include “Baby, I Couldn’t See” and “Take a Girl Like You.” Varese’s sixteen track set (including mono single mixes on 1, 4-6, 11, 13 and 15) provides a good overview of the group’s charms, and the CD’s screening with the rainbow swirl Uni label is a nice touch. For a more complete rendering of the group’s story, look for the out-of-print Build Me Up Buttercup – The Complete Pye Collection, but for most this is a good place to start. [©2017 Hyperbolium]

Jerry Yester: Pass Your Light Around

December 24th, 2017

Finely-crafted, previously unreleased 1970s studio gems

Though having been a member of the New Christy Minstrels and Modern Folk Quartet, and a replacement for Zal Yanovsky in the Lovin’ Spoonful, Jerry Yester is known mostly for his behind-the-scenes work as a studio musician, arranger and producer. His album with then-wife Judy Henske, Farewell Aldebaran, and a follow-up collaboration as Rosebud, are both highly revered, but did little to establish Yester’s name commercially. A pair of 1967 singles on the Dunhill label were his only commercially released solo material, but he wrote and recorded at a variety of Los Angeles studios throughout the 1970s, and fifteen of those pieces are collected and released here for the very first time.

These are finished studio recordings, not songwriter demos, and their artistry, quality and polish are undimmed by the decades they’ve spent on the shelf. Yester’s collaboration with lyricist Larry Beckett yielded a wide range of material, with the former responding musically to the latter’s words. The material covers pop, folk, bubblegum, country-rock, baroque and more. The lyrics, which were often inspired by real-life events, are filled with yearning, period detail and allegorical depth. The overdubbed harmonies of “Brooklyn Girl” show what Yester could accomplish on his own, and the backing of the Manhattan Transfer’s Laurel Massé on “Dance for Me, Anna Lee” shows off the artistic circles in which he traveled.

Yester repurposed a few of his earlier melodies, borrowed a few from Bach, and for the vocal intro of “Brooklyn Girl,” he deftly lifted the hook from “Stop! In the Name of Love.” The latter’s production of beautifully layered harmonies and harmonium combine to suggest the Tokens singing a Left Banke song. There are several songs of unrequited infatuation, and Beckett’s lyric of marital dissolution, “The Minutes,” echoed Yester’s split from Judy Henske. Although several of these songs were recorded by a reformed mid-70s MFQ, the originals remained on Yester’s shelf until now. It’s surprising that no one spotted the commercial possibilities of “All I Can Do Is Dance” or the FM potential of an album. Liner notes by Barry Alphonso and photos by Henry Diltz fill out a very special package. [©2017 Hyperbolium]