On January 16, 2021, Harvey Phillip Spector died aged 81. He was musician (guitar, piano), vocalist, songwriter and music producer. He developed music production “Wall of Sound”, he described as “Wagnerian approach to rock and roll”. Spector started the music career as member of the band Teddy Bears, at age of 21 he co-founded “Philles Records” and became the youngest ever US label owner to that point. In the 60’s he wrote songs or produced music for The Ronettes, The Crystals, Ike & Tina Turner, produced Beatles album “Let It Be”, and few solo John Lennon and George Harrison recordings. He also worked with Leonard Cohen, Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans, Darlene Love, Ronnie Spector, The Wrecking Crew, The Righteous Brothers, and The Ramones. In 1973 Spector won “Grammy Award for Album of the Year” for co-producing Harrison’s “Concert for Bangladesh”, in 1989 he was inducted into the “Rock and Roll Hall of Fame”, and in 1997 he was inducted into the “Songwriters Hall of Fame”. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked him at number 63 on their list of “The Greatest Artists in History”.In 2009, he was convicted for the 2003 murder of the actress Lana Clarkson and sentenced to 19 years to life in prison, where he died.
On January 1976, Chester Arthur Burnett aka Howlin’ Wolf died aged 65. He was musician (guitar, harmonica), singer, and songwriter, one of best known Chicago blues artists. Some of his songs have like “Spoonful”, “Smokestack Lightnin’”, and “Killing Floor”, become standards, and have been recorded and performed by many blues and rock musicians. In 2011, “Rolling Stone” magazine ranked Wolf at number 54 on its list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time”. As a leader he released 22 albums.
On January 7, 2020, Neil Ellwood Peart died aged 67. He was musician (drums, percussion), and songwriter, known by the nick name “The Professor”, but was best known as the drummer and the primary lyricist of the band Rush. Magazine “Rolling Stone” placed him at number 4 on its list of the “All Time Greatest Drummers”. In 1983, Peart was inducted into “The Modern Drummer Readers Poll Hall of Fame”, as the youngest person so honored.
On December 22, 2020, Leslie Weinstein aka Leslie West died aged 75. He was musician (guitar), vocalist, and songwriter, member of the bands The Vagrants, West, Bruce and Laing, but was best known as the founding member, guitarist, and co-lead vocalist of the band Mountain. In its list of the “100 Greatest guitarists of all time”, Rolling Stone magazine placed West at number 66. As a leader he released 16 albums.
On December 18, 1983, Jimmy Nolen died aged 49. He was musician (guitar), known for his distinctive “chicken scratch” guitar playing style. Nolan was member of the Jimmy Wilson band, Johnny Otis band, George “Harmonica” Smith backing band, in 1959 he formed his own band The Jimmy Nolan Band, but was best known as the lead guitarist in James Brown band form 1965 until his dead. In its survey of “The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time,” magazine “Mojo” ranks Nolen at number twelve.
On December 12, 1975, “Sounds Workshop” label released “Expensive Shit”, the twelfth Fela Kuti album. It was recorded in 1975, at “Arc Studio”, and was produced by Fela Kuti. Magazine “Rolling Stone” ranked “Expensive Shit” at number 402 on its list of the “500 Best Albums of All Time”.
- Fela Kuti – vocals, alto and tenor saxophone, piano, arrangement
- Ogene Kologbo – tenor guitar
- Leke Benson – rhythm guitar
- Franco Aboddy – bass guitar
- Tony Allen – lead drums
- Henry Kofi – lead congas
- Nicholas Addo – additional congas
- Issac Olaleye – maracas
- James Abayomi – sticks
- Christopher Uwaifor – tenor saxophone
- Lekan Animashaun – baritone saxophone
- Tunde Williams – trumpet, solo
- Ukem Stephen – 2nd trumpet
- Demola Odebiyi – engineer
- Roland Francis – executive producer
- Remi Olowookere – artwork, graphics
- Peter Obe Photo Agency – photography
All tracks by Fela Kuti.
- Expensive Shit
- Water No Get Enemy
On November 5, 2005, Fred Lincoln “Link” Wray Jr. died aged 76. He was songwriter singer, and musician (guitar, steel guitar, bass guitar), known for his rock and roll, and rockabilly musical style. Magazine “Rolling Stone” ranked him at number 45 on its list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time”. Wray released 23 albums as a leader.
On October 24, 2011, “Wire-Sound” label released “No Thyself”, the fifth and final Magazine studio album. It was recorded in 2011, at “Red Bird”, “Apollo Control”.
- Howard Devoto – vocals
- John Doyle – drums
- Dave Formula – keyboards
- Norman Fisher-Jones (aka Noko) – guitar, backing vocals
- Jonathan “Stan” White – bass guitar, backing vocals
- Christine Hanson – cello, strings
- Rosalie Cunningham – backing vocals
- Ashley Krajewski – engineer
- Mike Nielsen – mixing
- Kevin Metcalfe – mastering
- Odilon Redon – illustrations
All lyrics by Howard Devoto, except where noted, all music by Howard Devoto, John Doyle, Dave Formula and Norman Fisher-Jones, except where noted.
- Do the Meaning – Howard Devoto, John Doyle, Dave Formula, Norman Fisher-Jones, Pete Shelley
- Other Thematic Material
- The Worst of Progress….
- Hello Mister Curtis (With Apologies)
- Happening in English
- Holy Dotage
- Of Course Howard (1979)
- Final Analysis Waltz
- The Burden of a Song
- Blisterpack Blues” (bonus track)
On October 11, 1993, “Elektra” label released “I’m Alive”, the tenth Jackson Browne album. It was recorded in 1992, at “Groove Masters” in Santa Monica, CA, and was produced by Jackson Browne, Scott Thurston, and Don Was. The album was in “Q” magazine list of “The 50 Best Albums Of 1993”.
- Jackson Browne – lead and backing vocals, acoustic and electric guitar, piano
- Sweet Pea Atkinson – backing vocals
- Sir Harry Bowens – backing vocals
- Ryan Browne – backing vocals
- Katia Cardenal – backing vocals
- Valerie Carter – backing vocals
- David Crosby – backing vocals
- Doug Haywood – backing vocals
- Don Henley – backing vocals
- William “Bill” Greene – backing vocals
- Arnold McCuller – backing vocals
- Steven Soles – backing vocals
- Jennifer Warnes – backing vocals
- David Lindley – guitar, bouzouki, oud
- John Leventhal – acoustic and electric guitar
- Scott Thurston – guitar, keyboards, backing vocals
- Mike Campbell – guitar
- Mark Goldenberg – guitar
- Dean Parks – acoustic guitar
- Waddy Wachtel – guitar
- Jai Winding – piano
- Benmont Tench – Hammond organ
- James “Hutch” Hutchinson – bass guitar
- Kevin McCormick – bass guitar
- Jim Keltner – drums
- Mauricio-Fritz Lewak – drums
- Lenny Castro – percussion
- Luis Conte – percussion
- Susann McMahon – assistant producer
- Paul Dieter; Rik Pekkonen – engineer
- Steve Onuska, Bob Salcedo, Kathy Yore – assistant engineer
- Ed Cherney – mixing
- Gavin Lurssen – mastering
- Robin Lynch – art direction, design
- Alli Truch – design
- Bruce Weber – photography
All tracks by Jackson Browne.
- I’m alive
- My Problem Is You
- Everywhere I Go
- I’ll Do Anything
- Miles Away
- Too Many Angels
- Take This Rain
- Two of Me, Two of You
- Sky Blue and Black
- All Good Things
On September 21, 1987, John Francis Anthony “Jaco” Pastorius III died aged 35. He was a musician (bass), a member of Weather Report (1976 – 1981). Regarded as one of the best world bass players, he worked and recorded with Joni Mitchell, Pat Metheny, Herbie Hancock, Randy Bernsen, Little Beaver, Ira Sullivan, Albert Mangelsdorff, Ian Hunter, Airto Moreira, Tom Scott, Flora Purim, Cockrell & Santos, Michel Colombier, Manolo Badrena, Michel Polnareff, Bob Mintzer, Brian Melvin, Jimmy Cliff, Brian Melvin Trio, and Mike Stern. In 2006 Pastorius was voted “The Greatest Bass Player Who Has Ever Lived” by readers in Bass Guitar magazine, and was inducted in the Down Beat “Hall of Fame”. During his lifetime Pastorius released four albums as a leader.