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Rock Star Death Notices - June 2008


Photo Caption: Alton Kelley, a legendary artist who created a graphic style that rocked the world beginning in the psychedelic Sixties. His concert posters, logo designs, LP album covers, and fine art have forevermore defined that time.

Alton Kelley, a legendary artist who created a graphic style that rocked the world beginning in the psychedelic Sixties. His concert posters, logo designs, LP album covers, and fine art have forevermore defined that time.

Alton Kelley - A legendary artist who created a graphic style that rocked the world beginning in the psychedelic Sixties. His concert posters, logo designs, LP album covers, and fine art have forevermore defined that time. Kelley, born June 17, 1940, passed away peacefully at home June 1st of complications from a long illness.

Through his mind-expanding creativity and over several decades, Kelley gave rock music new colors, shapes, and themes expressing the optimism and enthusiasm of young people around the globe. His graphics defined youth culture as much as the music itself-in effect his art was a break-through collaboration with musicians and bands such as the Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hendrix. As Joel Selvin, rock critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, put it, “Kelley and Mouse drew the first face on rock music.”

Kelley and his life-long collaborator Stanley Mouse are best known for their posters for “San Francisco style” dance-concerts at the Fillmore Auditorium, Winterland arena, the Fillmore West, the Avalon Ballroom, and a host of other Bay Area theaters and amphitheaters. They also created world-renowned posters and album covers for the Grateful Dead, Journey, Steve Miller, Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, and others.  When Kelley (a native of Maine) met Mouse (a native of Detroit, MI) in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district in late 1965 (the “Haight” was the epicenter of the hippie movement, culminating in the “Summer of Love” in 1967), they instantly recognized they were kindred spirits in what Mouse describes as “one of the juiciest scenes of all time.” Their concert posters, commissioned by Fillmore promoter Bill Graham and Graham’s rival, the Avalon’s Family Dog collective, were eagerly snapped up by bands and fans alike.

Vernon Castle – Died April 25 at age 79 of Prostate cancer. He played drums and trumpet and led Castle And His Last Dance Band. He also worked with The Bud Wilber Orchestra and The Stardusters. He recorded many radio jingles including one Wrigley’s chewing gum.

John Wesley Farris - Died April 25 at age 67.  He played trumpet and was a member of The Claudettes. He also worked with Joe Tex, Z.Z. Hill, The Temptations and Otis Redding.

Henry Brant - Died April 26 at age 94 in Santa Barbara, CA. He was a composer and played flute, violin, tin whistle, percussions, organ and piano. He developed the concept of spatial music. He composed, “Verticals Ascending” and “Ice Field.”

Thomas Oteri (Gaetano Thomas Oteri) - Died April 26 at age 69. He bled to death after being stabbed on the wrist. He was a music producer and collaborated with songwriter Richard Fagan. He was also the father of comedian, Cheri Oteri.

Nino Candido - Died April 26 at age 66 of natural causes. He was an actor and singer. He recorded the album, “And They Danced.” He acted on TV’s, “The Adventures Of Ozzie & Harriet”, “Leave It To Beaver”, “The Time Tunnel” and “Mod Squad.” He was son of comedian, Candy Candido.

Marios Tokas - Died April 27 at age 53 of cancer. He was a composer, singer, guitarist and pianist. He worked with Yiannis Parios, Aleka Kanellidou, Charis Alexiou, Dimitra Galani, Dionisis Theodosis, Katerina Kouka, Antonis Kalogiannis and Dimitris Mitropanos.  He also wrote music for TV.

Hal Stein (Harold Jerome Stein) - Died April 27 at age 79 of lung cancer. He was a saxophonist. He worked with Plank ‘n’ Stein, Artie Shaw, Roy Haynes, Gerry Mulligan, Charles Mingus, Claude Thornhill, Elvin Jones, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Benny Carter, Don Byas and Gene Krupa.

Tarka Cordell - Died April 28 in London, England of suicide. He was a guitarist and singer. He did, “Wide Awake In A Dream” and “Lovely NY.”  He also worked with C.C. Adcock and was son of music producer Denny Cordell.

Ernesto Bonino (Ernesto Pietro Bonino)(aka Mr. Swing)- Died April 29 at age 86 in Milan, Italy. He was a singer. He did “Se fossi milionario” and “Conosci mia cugina?” He worked with The Trio Lescano and Tina de Mola.

Pinkie Mseleku - Died in April in Durban at age 66. She was a singer and activist. She did, “Wamemeza” and worked with Hugh Masekela.

Jim Hager - Died May 1 at age 66 of a heart attack. He was a singer, guitarist and drummer. He was one of The Hager Twins. They did, “Gotta Get To Oklahoma (‘Cause California’s Gettin’ To Me).” He appeared on TV’s, Hee Haw and worked with Buck Owens.

Tony K (Tony Kostrzewa)(Julian Anthony Kostrzewa) - Died May 1 in Leeds and was born in 1949 in Bradford, Yorkshire. He ran Red Rhino Distribution Ltd which released The Toy Dolls’, “Nellie The Elephant” and Akrylykz’s, “Spiderman.” He worked with Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, Skeletal Family and Front 242. He was a business manager for The Catalogue music magazine.

Gary Kryshak (Gary M. Kryshak) - Died May 1 in Madison, WI at age 49. He was a saxophone and clarinet player who often played the open jam at the Concourse Hotel.

Dave Roberts (David Lee Roberts) - Died May 2 at age 65 in Allentown, PA. He played piano and worked with Ye Wanton Singers.

Frantisek Sahula - Died May 2 at age 45 in Skuher u Kamenice, Czech Republic. He was murdered and robbed. He was a guitarist and singer. He was a member of Tri sestry. They did, “Sovy v mazutu” and “Hroch”. He was also a member of Synove vycepu. They did, “Lambada” and “Bobecky.” He worked with Hagen Baden. They did, “Prusa.”

Tripp Joye - Died May 2 at age 25 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina in a car accident. He was a drummer and worked with Red Orchestra Radio and Anything On Fire. They did, “Gene Therapy” and “Robot Hate Sex.”

Ilyas Malayev - Died May 2 at age 72 in Flushing, NY of Pancreatic cancer. He played the tar, the tambur and violin and was a poet. He worked with The Uzbek Song And Dance Ensemble and The Folk And Variety Orchestras Of Uzbekistan Radio.

Ian Berry (Ian James Berry) - Died May 2 at age 65 of lung cancer. He played saxophone and keyboards. He worked with 6 Cylinder, The Cement City Cowboys, The Wildroot Orchestra, John Lee Hooker and Sweet Beaver later renamed The New Breed.

Kishan Maharaj - Died May 4 in Khajuri near Varanasi and was born in 1923 in Benares, United Provinces, British India. He played the Tabla and worked with Ravi Shankar, Ustad Faiyaz Khan and Bhimsen Joshi.

Leo Jackson (George Jackson) - Died May 4 at age 73. He shot himself. He was a guitarist. He worked with Jim Reeves’ Blue Boys (“Distant Drums”), George Strait (“Right Or Wrong” and “Lets Fall To Pieces Together”), Moe Bandy (“Its A Cheating Situation)and Tom T. Hall.

Georgjean ‘‘Jeanne’’ Augusta Fells - Died May 4 at age 69. She was a singer and a member of The Quintones. They did, “Down The Aisle Of Love.”

John Altieri - Died May 4 at age 38 in Las Vegas Nevada of pneumonia - He was a singer and actor. He played Bob Crewe in the Broadway musical, Jersey Boys.

Andy Schwarzin - Died May 4 at age 45 of heart problems. He was a singer and guitarist and a member of DNA.

Tom Boggs (Thomas Boggs) - Died May 5 at age 63 of cancer. He was a drummer. He worked with Tommy Burk And The Counts, Flash And The Board Of Directors and The Box Tops. They did, “Soul Deep” and “I Must Be The Devil.”

Jerry Wallace (Jerry Leon Wallace) - Died May 5 at age 79 of congestive heart failure. He was a singer, guitarist and actor. He did, “Primrose Lane” and “If You Leave Me Tonight I’ll Cry.” He also composed music for films and TV.

D.C. Minner - Died May 6 at age 73. He played guitar and bass. He was a member of D.C., Selby And Blues On The Move. He also worked with Larry Johnson And The New Breeds, O. V. Wright, Jim Donovan, Freddie King, Tony Mathews, Chuck Berry, Eddie Floyd and Bo Diddley. He was the co-founder of the Dusk Til Dawn Blues Festival. He was married to singer and bassist, Selby Minner - Oklahoma Jazz Hall Of Fame Inductee.

Franz Jackson (Franz Robert Jackson) - Died May 6 at age 95 in Niles, Michigan of natural causes. He was a saxophonist, clarinetist and singer. He led The Original Jass All-Stars. He worked with Louis Armstrong, Count Basie, Cab Calloway, Ella Fitzgerald, Fletcher Henderson and Jelly Roll Morton.

David Williams (David B. Williams) - Died May 6 at age 47 in Montgomery, AL of pancreatic cancer. He was a guitarist, singer and artist. He worked with The Old Flickers.

Scott Gibson - Died May 6 of a heart attack. He was born in 1966. He was a guitarist and worked with The Marvins, Large Mammal, Turning Wheel, The Amazing Dog & Pony Show and Thread.

Earlston Smith - Died May 6 at age 86. He was a saxophonist and a member of The Aldano Sextet. He worked with Ghandi Burgess’ band.

Micky Waller (Michael Waller) - Died May 6 at age 66 in London, England. He was a drummer. He worked with The Flee-Rekkers, (They did, “Greenjeans”), Joe Brown And The Bruvvers, The Cyril Davies R&B All Stars, The Wildecats, Georgie Fame And The Blue Flames, Brian Auger, The Steampacket, Chicken Shack, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, The Jeff Beck Group, Andy Bown, Rod Stewart (“Maggie May”), The Deluxe Blues Band, Chuck Berry and The Terry Smith Blues Band.

Jose Antonio Velasquez - Died May 7 at age 86 in Ventura. He played bass and was a member of Mariachi Nacional of Lolo Ruiz. He worked with Antonio Aguilar and performed for President Jimmy Carter.

Ray Williams (aka Mr. Barbershop) - Died May 8 at age 79. He was the founding member of The Trentones and The Big 8 Harmonizers.

Larry Levine (Lawrence R. Levine) - Died May 8 at age 80 in Encino, CA. He was a recording engineer. He worked on recordings for Eddie Cochran, Herb Alpert’s Tijuana Brass,  Quincy Jones, Brian Wilson and for producer Phil Spector (The Crystals, The Bob B. Soxx, The Ronettes, The Righteous Brothers, Leonard Cohen, Ike And Tina Turner and The Ramones).

LonPaul Ellrich (LonPaul Stewart Ellrich) - Died May 7 at age 37. He sang and played keyboards, guitar and drums. He was a member of Marmoset and worked with Sardina (“Back Stage Pass” and “Blues In Three”), The Wine Chuggers (“Long Circuitous Path”), Dow Jones And The Industrials, June Panic, Jorma Whitaker, The Panoply Academy and The Impossible Shapes.

Eddy Arnold (Richard Edward Arnold) - The Tennessee Plowboy - Died May 8 at age 89 in Franklin, TN. He was a singer. He did, “Cattle Call” and “Make The World Go Away.” He worked with Pee Wee King’s Golden West Cowboys and was a Country Music Hall Of Fame Inductee.

William E. Regan Jr. - Died May 8 at age 67 in Berlin, MD. He sang and played tin whistle and was a member of The Jasper Greens.

Ric Maroni (Ricardo Maroni) - Died May 8 and was born 1930 in Verona. He played trumpet and led Ric Maroni and the Jets. He worked with Harold Betters, Sandy Stacey, Jan Needham and Michelle Benson.

Loretta Thomas (aka Loretta Whyte)(Loretta Estelle Simpson)- Died May 8 at age 97 of natural causes. She played piano and led her own band at The Flame Club which she co-owned. She worked with Bernie Young and Tommy Fox And The Clever Little Foxes. She also played music for silent films and speakeasies.

Pascal Sevran (Jean-Claude Jouhaud) - Died May 9 at age 62 in Limoges, France of lung cancer. He was a lyricist, singer and TV producer. He wrote Dalida’s, “Il venait d’avoir 18 ans.”

Jimmy Cook - Died May 9 at age 78 in West Toledo of cancer. He was a trumpeter and a member of The Parker-Cook Quintet and The Toledo Jazz Orchestra.

Mick Blanchett - Died May 9 at age 45 in Corby of multiple sclerosis. He was a singer and guitarist and a member of General Lee, Mixed Emotions and Dark Crystal.

Maria Alves (aka Cookie) - Died May 9 at age 84. She was a singer and worked with Manuel Leite.

John Spencer - Died May 9 at age 79 of a heart attack. He was a drummer and worked with Peter Warner.

Matt Blake (Matthew Blake) - Died May 9 in Pontiac of a heart attack. He was a drummer and artist. He worked with Bogue, Misty and Skeeter Shelton.

Mario Schiano - Died May 10 at age 74 in Rome, Italy. He played saxophone, organ and was a singer. He was a member of The Gruppo Romano Free Jazz and The Italian Instabile Orchestra. He also worked with Eugenio Colombo, Famoudou Don Moye, Joelle Leandre, Ernst Reijseger and Gianluigi Trovesi.

Dottie Rambo (Joyce Reba Lutrell)- Died May 11 at age 74 in Mount Vernon, Missouri of a bus accident. She was a gospel singer, songwriter and musician. She wrote, “I Go To The Rock” and “He Looked Beyond My Fault.” She led The Gospel Echoes and was a member of The Singing Rambos with her husband, Buck Rambo. She worked with Jimmie Davis, Barbara Mandrell, Porter Wagoner, Mel Tillis, Dickie Betts, The Dunaways and David Robertson. Her songs have been recorded by many artists. She was a Kentucky Music Hall Of Fame Inductee, Gospel Music Hall Of Fame Inductee, Southern Gospel Music Hall Of Fame Inductee and Nashville Songwriters Hall Of Fame Inductee.

John Rutsey - Died May 11 and was born in 1953. He was a drummer and singer and co-founder of Rush. They did, “Finding My Way” and “In The Mood.”

Don Mayo (Domenic M. Petrocelli) - Died May 11 at age 84 of a stroke. He was a bandleader, musician and singer. He was a member of The Classiques, The Chord-Aires, The Musictones and The Don Mayo Orchestra.

Pat Gordon (Patrick Barry Gordon) - Died May 11 at age 64. He was a singer and led Pat and the Blenders. They did, “Just Because” and “Candy Man.”

Steve Campbell (Steve T. Campbell) - Died May 12 at age 60 in Cincinnati, Ohio of cancer. He played drums and guitar. He worked with The 389th Army Band, George Legg, Dave Baber, Glenn Smith, Joe Pass, Ronnie Hawkins, Gino Vannelli and Charity Brown.

Neyyatinkara Vasudevan - Died May 14 and was born in 1940. He was a singer and can be heard in the films, Enipadikal and Mazha.

Wander Taffo - Died May 14 at age 53 in Brazil of cardio respiratory arrest. He was a guitarist and a member of Radio Taxi. They did, “Coisas de Casal” and “Garota Dourada.” He also worked with Rita Lee.

Bob Florence (Robert Chase Florence) - Died May 15 at age 75 in Los Angeles, CA of pneumonia. He was an arranger and pianist and a member of The Limited Edition. He worked with Alvino Rey, Les Brown, Harry James, Martin Denny and Si Zentner.

Justin Delano - Died May 15 at age 24 when a school bus hit his motorcycle. He was a singer and bassist and a member of Small Town Night Life. They did, “5 AM Amy” and “Sheepish Luke.”

Al Gallico - Died May 15 at age 88 in Los Angeles from cardiac arrest due to pulmonary disease. He worked for Lou Levy’s Leeds Music and was a general manager for music publisher Shapiro-Bernstein where he was involved in Claude King’s, “Wolverton Mountain” and Johnny Cash’s, “Ring Of Fire - Owned Al Gallico Music Corporation. He was also a Songwriters Hall Of Fame Inductee.

Alexander Courage - Died May 15 at age 88 in Pacific Palisades, CA. He was a composer and arranger. He wrote music for TV’s, Lost In Space, Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea, Daniel Boone and the theme for Star Trek . He orchestrated and/or arranged music for the films, Seven Brides For Seven Brothers and Gigi.

Geoff Coughlin - Died May 15. He was a bassist and singer and a member of Hotrod Fury, Commando Baby and Sweetbox . He worked with The Irrelevants.

Mickey Barks (Forrest Barks) - Died May 16 at age 60 in Painesville. He was a guitarist and a member of After Six.

Bill Reichenbach Sr. (William Frank Reichenbach II) - Died May 16 at age 84 in Hollywood, CA. He worked with Charlie Byrd, Stan Getz, Tommy Dorsey and Georgia Gibbs. He is the father of trombonist, Bill Reichenbach Jr. and singer, Kurt Reichenbach.

Bobbie Chudzik (Beatrice A. Chudzik)(Beatrice A. Valachovic) - Died May 16 at age 85 of ovarian cancer. She was a singer and dancer. She worked with her sister Nona and performed with Jimmy Durante, The Mills Brothers and Nat King Cole.

Professor Wilfrid Mellers - Died May 17 at age 94. He was a composer, author and musicologist. He wrote the books, “Twilight Of The Gods: The Beatles In Retrospect” and “A Darker Shade Of Pale: A Backdrop To Bob Dylan”.

Jacob Forbes (Jacob Cole Forbes) - Died May 17 at age 20 in Carroll County in a car accident. He was a singer and was a member of The Lights Go Out In Georgia. They did, “Sweaty Teddys Rockin Steady” and “We Don’t Need Roads.”

Margo Davidso - Died May 17 at age 50 in Toronto, Canada. She sang and played sax and bongos and was a member of The Parachute Club. They did, “Rise Up.”

Jack Duffy - Died May 19 at age 81 in Toronto, Canada of natural causes. He was a singer, actor and comedian and was a member of The Bob-O-Links. He worked on The Perry Como Kraft Music Hall and with Tommy Dorsey’s orchestra.

Bill Flurry (Thomas B. Flurry) - Died May 19 at age 75 of stomach cancer. He was a gospel singer and worked with his wife, Marilyn Flurry. He was the owner of The Joyful Noise Christian supper club that launched gospel singers and featured established act.

Irvine Mitchell (Irvine Morris Mitchell) - Died May 19 at age 84 and was a member of The Gospelaires.

Michelle Meldrum - Died May 21 at age 39 in Burbank, CA from a cystic growth on her brain. She was a guitarist and songwriter and a member of Wargod, Phantom Blue (They did, “Anti-love Crunch” and “Cookie”)and Meldrum (They did, “Miss Me When I’m Gone” and “Bite The Pillow”).

Dee Kilpatrick (Walter David Kilpatrick Jr.) - Died May 21 at age 88 in Franklin, TN. He was a record executive and producer. He worked for Capitol Records, Mercury Records, Warner Bros. Records and Philips Records. He produced Martha Carson And The Statesmen, Hank Thompson, Tex Ritter, Carl Butler, Johnny Horton, Jimmy Dean and Carl Story. He was a manager for The Grand Ole Opry and co-founded The Country Music Association.

Tubby T (Anthony Robinson) - Died in May. He was a singer. He did, “Ready She Ready” and “Back In Da Day.”

Ray Hattersley - Died in May at age 65 of throat cancer. He was a guitarist and a member of Mike Shane And The Chevrolets.

Frank Clarke - Died in May at age 88. He was a saxophonist and clarinet player. He worked with The Johnny Stiles Band, Albion Street, Swindon Big Band and The U3A Band.

Vuyo Mokoena - Died May 23 in Brakpan of an illness. Was a gospel singer and worked with Melodi, Pure Magic and Rebecca Malope.

U. Utah Phillips (Bruce Duncan Phillips)- Died May 23 at age 73 in Nevada City, California of congestive heart failure. He was a singer and songwriter. He did, “Moose Turd Pie” and “Daddy, What’s A Train?” He worked with Ani DiFranco, Rosalie Sorrels, Kate Wolf and John McCutcheo. His songs have been recorded by Emmylou Harris,  Ian Tyson, Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez, Tom Waits and Joe Ely.

Danny Rhodes - Died May 23 at age 58. He led Danny Rhodes And The Messengers. He wrote Etta James’, “Get Funky.” He worked with Dicky Betts, Gregg Allman, Rodney Crowell, Gatemouth Brown and Dash Crofts. He was an Arizona Blues Hall Of Fame Inductee.

Earl Root (Earl Jefferey Root) - Died May 23 of complications from non-Hodgkin’s regenerative lymphoma. He was born in 1962. He was a guitarist, DJ, head of Root Of All Evil record label and Root Cellar Records store owner. He worked with Aesma Daeva. They did, “Since The Machine” and “The Camp Of Souls.”

Martin Kini - Died in May. He was a singer and a member of The Kini Quartet. They did, “Under The Sun” and “Hard Times Are Comin’” He worked with The Dave Donovan Quartet.

Sonny Okosun - Died May 24 at age 61 of colon cancer. He was a musician and a member of The Postmen, Paperback and Ozziddi (They did, “Help”) He worked with Sir Victor Uwaifo.

Jimmy McGriff (James Harrell McGriff Jr.) - Died May 24 at age 72 in Voorhees. He played the Hammond B-3 organ, bass, saxophone, drums, vibes and piano. He did, “All About My Girl” and an instrumental version of, “I’ve Got A Woman.” He worked with Charles Earland, Don Gardner, Arthur Prysock, Junior Parker, Buddy Rich, David “Fathead” Newman and Carmen McRae. He owned jazz club, The Golden Slipper.

Camu Tao (Tero Smith) - Died May 25 at age 30 of lung cancer. He was a member of The Weathermen and worked with The Nighthawks, S.A. Smash, MHz and Central Services.

David Gahr (David Gahrruth Gahr) - Died May 25 at age 85 in Brooklyn, NY and was born in Milwaukee, WI. He was a photographer of American folk, blues, jazz and rock musicians which included Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, Miles Davis, Bruce Springsteen, Joan Baez, Pete Seeger, Judy Collins, Buddy Guy, Sonny Terry, Junior Wells, Johnny Cash, Phil Ochs, Mary Travers and others. His photographs have appeared on many album covers.

Dick Rose (Richard Allen Rose) - Died May 26 at age 66 in Bemidji of pancreatic cancer. He was a singer, songwriter and guitarist and a member of Joyful Noise.

Howlin’ Dave (Dante David) - Died May 26 at age 52 in Quezon City, Philippines. He was a DJ and hosted radio’s, Pinoy Rock ‘n’ Rhythm and Tapsi Rock. He was a promoter of Pinoy rock and a NU Rock Awards Hall Of Fame Inductee.

Earle Hagen (Earle Harry Hagen) - Died May 26 at age 88 in Rancho Mirage, CA. He played trombone and composed music. He co-wrote, “Harlem Nocturne.” He wrote music for TV’s, The Andy Griffith Show (He’s the one whistling), I Spy, That Girl, The Dick Van Dyke Show and The Mod Squad and for the films, Let’s Make Love and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. He worked with Benny Goodman, The California Collegians, Ben Pollack, Isham Jones, Tommy Dorsey and Ray Noble’s orchestra.

Ken Glidewell (Gerald Ken Glidewell)(aka Mr. K) - Died May 27 at age 48 in Indianapolis, IN in a motorcycle accident. He was a DJ and bassist and produced Dallas Moore. He was a member of Big In Iowa.

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