Saturday, February 10, 2018

 

This Week's Birthdays (February 11 - 17)

Happy Birthday this week to:

February 11
1882 ● John C. Mills, Sr. / → Patriarch of the four sons who formed six-decade jazz and pop quartet The Mills Brothers ("Cab Driver," #23, Adult #3, 1968), took his deceased son, John Jr.'s place after he died in 1936 and performed with the group until just prior to his own death on 12/8/1957, age 85
1914 ● Josh White / → Influential folk revival and Piedmont blues guitarist and songwriter, recorded under pseudonyms "Pinewood Tom" and "Tippy Barton" in 30s, became a social activist for Afro-American musicians, hosted US and UK music TV shows, died during open heart surgery on 9/6/1969, age 55
1914 ● Matt Dennis / → Big Band-era songwriter, pianist and singer with a string of albums and radio and TV appearances in his later career, started in Hollywood night clubs in the 20s and 30s, composed and arranged for Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller's orchestras in the 40s, fronted his own bands in the 50s, wrote the now-standard "Angel Eyes" (1946) and other songs covered by Frank Sinatra, Willie Nelson, Roberta Flack and others, died of natural causes on 6/21/2002, age 88
1928 ● Raoul Cita / → Pianist, songwriter and arranger for critically recognized but commercially little known R&B/doo wop The Harptones ("Life Is But A Dream," 1955), performed with the group for over 60 years until his death from liver and stomach cancer on 12/13/2014, age 86
1935 ● Gene Vincent / (Vincent Eugene Craddock) → Early and legendary rock 'n' roll/rockabilly singer and bandleader with His Blue Caps, "Be-Bop-A-Lula" (#7, 1956), died from a ruptured stomach ulcer on 10/12/1971, age 36
1939 ● Gerry Goffin / → Brill Building songwriter and lyricist, with wife Carole King co-wrote over 20 classic pop-rock hits and six chart toppers, including "Will You Love Me Tomorrow" (The Shirelles), "Take Good Care Of My Baby" (Bobby Vee) and "The Loco-Motion" (Little Eva), died on 6/19/2014, age 75
1940 ● Boris Pickett / (Robert George Pickett) → One hit wonder novelty pop bandleader, singer and songwriter, "Monster Mash" (#1, 1962), died from complications of leukemia on 4/25/2007, age 67
1941 ● Earl Lewis / → Bass vocals for sophisticated group harmony R&B/doo wop The Flamingos, "I Only Have Eyes For You", (#11, R&B #3, 1959), then The Five Echoes
1941 ● Sergio Mendes / → Brazilian bossa nova, jazz and funk keyboardist and bandleader for Brasil '66, "The Foot Of The Hill" (#6, 1968)
1942 ● Leon Haywood / → R&B/funk and soul singer with several singles and stints with various bands in the 60s with little commercial success, scored several R&B hits on the 70s, including "I Want'a Do Something Freaky To You" (#15, R&B #7, 1975) but stopped recording and turned to record production in the 80s for Edge Records and his own Evejim label
1942 ● Otis Clay / → Gospel, soul and Chicago blues singer with numerous minor hits, including "Trying To Live My Life Without You" (#102, R&B #24, 1972) but little resounding success, was a 2013 inductee into the Blues Hall of Fame and continued to perform and record until his death from a heart attack on 1/8/2016, age 73
1943 ● Little Johnny Taylor (Merrett) / (Johnny Taylor Merrett) → Gospel turned R&B/soul and blues singer with one big hit ("Part Time Love," #19, R&B #1, 1963) and eight other minor chart singles in the 60s and 70s, continued to tour and perform until his death on 5/17/2002, age 59
1946 ● Ray Lake / → Guitarist for Brit Northern soul/funk The Real Thing, "You To Me Are Everything" (R&B #28, UK #1, 1976)
1947 ● Derek Shulman / → Multi-instrumentalist and lead vocalist for pop/rock Simon Dupree & The Big Sound, "Kites" (UK #9, 1967), then founding member with brothers Ray and Phil of innovative prog rock Gentle Giant, senior executive positions with PolyGram, Atco and Roadrunner record companies
1948 ● Al Johnson / → R&B/soul singer and music producer, co-founder of smooth harmony soul quintet The Unifics and lead singer on their two Top 40 hits, "Court Of Love" (#25, R&B #3, 1968) and "The Beginning Of My End" (#36, R&B #9, 1969), turned to a mildly successful solo career and record production in the 80s, reformed The Unifics in 2004, died on 10/26/2013, age 65
1950 ● Rochelle Fleming / → Vocals in Philly R&B/disco female group First Choice, "The Player, Part 1" (R&B #7, 1974)
1953 ● Mr. Fabulous / (Alan "Mr. Fabulous" Rubin) → Trumpet and flugelhorn for the Saturday Night Live house band, the Blues Brothers Band, "Soul Man" (#14, 1979) and hundreds of studio sessions with Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Aerosmith and many others, died from lung cancer on 6/8/2011 , age 58
1953 ● Neil Henderson / → Joined Scot bubblegum pop-rock Middle Of The Road, "Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep" (UK #1, 1971) in 1974, wrote "Rockin' Soul" (Germany #31, 1974)
1962 ● Sheryl Crow / → Former backing vocalist for Michael Jackson's "Bad" tour turned nine-time Grammy-winning roots rock singer/songwriter, "All I Wanna Do" (#2, 1994) and eight other Top 40 hits
1966 ● Tenor Saw / (Clive Bright) → Early ragga and dancehall reggae singer, "Ring The Alarm" (1985), killed by a hit-and-run driver in August 1988
1967 ● Clay Crosse / (Walter Clayton Crossnoe) → Contemporary Christian Music vocalist and multiple Dove Award winner, "I Will Follow Christ" (2000)
1969 ● Shovell / (Andrew Lovell) → Jamaican-born percussionist for Brit dance-pop/house music M People, "Moving On Up" (#34, Dance #1, 1993)
1972 ● Craig Jones / → Sampler and keyboardist for Grammy-winning alt metal/rap-metal Slipknot, "Duality" (Mainstream Rock #5, 2004)
1974 ● D'Angelo / (Michael Eugene Archer) → Early and influential 90s R&B/neo-soul singer, "Lady" (#10, 1996), Grammy-winner for "Untitled (How Does It Feel)" (#25, R&B #2, 2000)
1977 ● Mike Shinoda / → Guitar and vocals for alt rock/rap-rock/space-rock Linkin Park, "In The End" (Alt Rock #1, 2001)
1979 ● Brandy / (Brandy Rayana Norwood) → Teen pop then R&B/neo-soul-pop star, "Sittin' Up In My Room" (#2, 1996), songwriter, TV actress, record and film producer
1981 ● Kelly Rowland / (Kelendria Trene Rowland) → Vocals for R&B/dance-pop Destiny's Child, "Say My Name" (#1, 2000), solo artist and actress
1984 ● Aubrey O'Day / → Singer for MTV Making the Band program winner and pre-fab, all-girl dance-pop quintet Danity Kane, "Show Stopper" (#8, 2006)
1991 ● Never Shout Never / (Christofer Drew Ingle) → Multi-instrumentalist one man band acoustic pop singer/songwriter, "Trouble" (Singles Sales #1, 2009)

February 12
1904 ● Ted Mack / (William Edward Maguiness) → Host of the TV variety show Ted Mack And The Original Amateur Hour from 1948 to 1970, featured early-career performances by Gladys Knight, Ann-Margret, Pat Boone and others, influenced future musical talent-seeking shows including The Gong Show, American Idol and America's Got Talent, died from cancer on 7/12/1976, age 72
1867 ● Leonard Garfield Spencer / → Early American phonograph recording star singer, "A Hot Time In The Old Town" (ca. 1897) and "Arkansas Traveler" (1902), died on 12/15/1914, age 47
1914 ● Tex Beneke / (Gordon Lee Beneke) → Big Band-era saxophonist, singer and bandleader who played and snag with the Glenn Miller Orchestra on their hits "In The Mood" (#1, 1940) and "Chattanooga Choo Choo" (#1, 1941), took over leadership of the band in 1946 after Miller's death during World War II and later formed his own bands during a forty-year second career that lasted until his death from reparatory failure on 5/30/2000, age 86
1915 ● Lorne Greene / (Lyon Himan Green) → Canadian-born CBC radio newscaster, stage, film and TV actor, and country-pop singer with several albums and a lone hit, the spoken-word ballad "Ringo" (#1, 1964), the second Canadian to have a US #1 single in the U.S., best known for starring in the NBC TV western Bonanza (1959-73), died from prostate cancer on 9/11/1987, age 72
1935 ● Gene McDaniels / → R&B singer during the late 50s and early 60s development of classic soul music, "Tower of Strength" (#5, 1961) and five other Top 40 hits, wrote "Feel Like Makin' Love" for Roberta Flack (#1, 1974), died at home of natural causes on 7/29/2011, age 76
1939 ● Ray Manzarek / → Keyboards and backing vocals for influential/controversial rock band The Doors, "Hello, I Love You" (#1, 1968), member of supergroup Nite City and collaborations with Doors bandmate Robby Krieger, died of cancer on 5/20/2013, age 74
1942 ● Rick Frank / → Founding member and drummer for jazz-psych-rock Elephant's Memory, "Mongoose" (Top 100, 1969), which became the backing band for John Lennon and Yoko Ono in the early 70s, worked with Lennon on his 1972 album Some Time In New York City
1946 ● Joe Schermie / → Original bassist for pop-rock Three Dog Night, "Joy To The World" (#1, 1971), left in 1973 to start pop-rock S. S. Fools and session work, died following a heart attack on 3/25/2002, age 56
1946 ● Pete Gage / (Peter Gage) → Blues-rock guitarist, vocalist, keyboards and harmonica player, played in Jet Harris's backing band in the 60s and various soul-blues-rock bands in the 70s, formed his own Pete Gage Expression in the 80s, frontman for the 90s lineup of Brit pub-rock Dr. Feelgood, "Milk And Alcohol" (UK #9, 1979), continues to perform with various rock acts into the 10s
1947 ● Shelbra Bennett Deane / → Original member in R&B/soul vocal quartet The Soul Children, "I'll Be The Other Woman" (#36, R&B #3, 1973), the group did not meet the expectations of Isaac Hayes and other Stax Records executives who created the group to offset the loss of departed duo Sam & Dave, died on 5/31/2013, age 66
1949 ● Goober Grin / (Stanley Knight) → Guitarist for Southern raunch-rock Black Oak Arkansas, "Jim Dandy To The Rescue" (#25, 1974), died from cancer on 2/16/2013, age 64
1950 ● Steve Hackett / → Joined prog-rock Genesis, "Your Own Special Way" (#62, 1977) in 1971, left in 1977 for solo career and eventually prog rock supergroup GTR, "When The Heart Rules The Mind" (#14, 1986) with Steve Howe of Yes
1951 ● G.L. Moore / (Gilbert Moore) → Drummer and vocals for Canadian power rock trio Triumph ("All The Way," Mainstream Rock #2, 1983), owner of Metalworks Studios, Canada's largest facility
1951 ● Vincent James / → Vocals for Philly-style Brit R&B/soul Sweet Sensation, "Sad Sweet Dreamer" (, , 1975)
1952 ● Michael McDonald / → Blue-eyed soul/pop backing singer with Steely Dan, lead vocals for California pop-rock The Doobie Brothers, "Listen To The Music" (#11, 1972), then Grammy-winning solo career, "Sweet Freedom" (#7, 1986)
1958 ● Grant McLennan / → Bass, vocals and songwriter for Aussie alt pop-rock The Go-Betweens, "Was There Anything I Could Do?" (Modern Rock #16, 1988), then solo, died in his sleep at home in Brisbane, Australia on 5/6/2006, age 48
1959 ● Neil Conti / → Percussion for Brit indie pop-rock Prefab Sprout, "If You Don't Love Me" (Dance/Club #3, 1992)
1959 ● Omar Hakim / → Session and touring drummer for Carly Simon, then joined jazz-rock fusion Weather Report, then sessions for Sting, Dire Straits, Madonna, Miles Davis and others, plus two solo albums
1966 ● Gary Whelan / → Drummer for Manchester electro-dance club Happy Mondays, "Stinkin Thinkin" (Dance/Club #1, 1992)
1966 ● Paul Crook / → Session and tour guitarist, now with Meat Loaf, formerly with Anthrax and Sebastian Bach
1968 ● Chynna Phillips / → Vocals for pop-rock all-girl offspring trio Wilson Phillips, "Release Me" (#1, 1990), daughter of John and Michelle Phillips of The Mamas And The Papas
1970 ● Jim Creeggan / (James Raymond Creeggan) → Bassist for Canadian alt-rock Barenaked Ladies, "One Week" (#1, 1998)
1971 ● Kei Lewis / → Keyboards and guitar for new jack swing R&B/soul-pop sextet Mint Condition, "What Kind Of Man Would I Be?" (#17, 1996)
1978 ● Brian Chase / → Drummer in New York indie rock/punk revival trio Yeah Yeah Yeahs ("Maps," #87, Alt. Rock #9, 2004)
1979 ● Jade Jones / → Lead singer for Brit R&B/dance-pop boy band Damage, "Wonderful Tonight" (UK #3, 1997)
1981 ● Lisa Hannigan / (Lisa Margaret Hannigan) → Irish vocalist with folk-rock the Damien Rice Band, "Cannonball" (UK #32, 2002), then singer/songwriter solo career, "Lille" (2008)
1987 ● O'Ryan / (O'Ryan Omir Browner) → Urban teen R&B/dance-pop singer, "Take It Slow" (R&B #122, 2004), younger brother of Omarion

February 13
1919 ● Tennessee Ernest Jennings Ford / (Ernest Jennings Ford) → Country-pop singer and TV host who recorded over 100 albums from traditional country to gospel to early rock 'n' roll, "Sixteen Tons" (#1, 1955), died from alcoholic liver failure on 10/17/1991, age 72
1920 ● Boudleaux Bryant / → Prolific country and pop songwriter, with his wife Felice wrote "Rocky Top," "Love Hurts," "Bye Bye Love" (#2, 1957) and "All I Have To Do Is Dream" (#1, 1958) for The Everly Brothers, as well as "Raining In My Heart" for Buddy Holly, died on 6/25/1987, age 67
1923 ● Gene Ames / (Gene Ames (Urick)) → Vocals for sibling quartet Ames Brothers, "Rag Mop" (#1, 1950), starred in The Ames Brothers Show on TV, died of cancer on 4/4/1997, age 74
1928 ● Dorothy McGuire / → Vocals for immensely popular sibling singing trio the McGuire Sisters, "Sugartime" (#1, 1958)
1942 ● Peter Tork / (Peter Thorkelston) → Bass, rhythm guitar and occasional songwriter for 60s bad-rap pre-fab pop-rock The Monkees, "Last Train To Clarksville" (#1, 1966)
1943 ● Bill Szymczyk / → Technical engineer and rock and blues music producer, worked with J. Geils Band, James Gang, The Outlaws, Bob Seger, The Who and Edgar Winter Group among many others, including a long association with the Eagles, for whom he produced the album Long Road Out Of Eden in 2007
1944 ● Reebop / (Anthony Kwaku Baah) → Ghanaian percussionist and singer with Traffic, Can and Zahara, plus sessions for Steve Winwood and The Rolling Stones, and four solo LPs mixing traditional African sounds with dance-pop contemporary music, died from a cerebral hemorrhage on 1/12/1983, age 38
1944 ● Stockard Channing / (Susan Antonia Williams Stockard) → Stage, film and TV actress who portrayed Betty Rizzo in the film adaptation of the Broadway show Grease (1977) and sang lead vocals on "Look At Me I'm Sandra Dee" on the film's soundtrack album, the highest selling movie soundtrack of all time
1945 ● King Floyd / (King Floyd III) → New Orleans R&B/soul singer and songwriter with several minor chart singles and one big hit, "Groove Me" (#6 R&B #1, UK $#41, 1970), died from complications of a stroke on 3/6/2006 , age 61
1945 ● Roy Dyke / → Drummer in 60s Brit pop-rock The Remo Four, then art rock Ashton, Gardner & Dyke, "Resurrection Shuffle" (#40, UK #3, 1971)
1950 ● Peter Gabriel / → Founding member and leader of prog rock Genesis, left in 1976 to start art rock then successful mainstream pop solo career, "Sledgehammer" (#1, 1986)
1950 ● Roger Christian / → Keyboards and vocals for blue-eyed soul sibling trio The Christians, "When Fingers Point" (Dance/Club #29, 1988), left in 1987, died from a brain tumor on 3/8/1998, age 48
1951 ● David Naughton / → Actor and singer, starred in the TV sitcom Makin' It and became a one hit wonder pop singer with the release of the show's theme song, "Makin' It" (#5, 1979), later starred in the film American Werewolf In London (1981) and appeared in several 80s and 90s TV sitcoms
1951 ● Rod Dees / → Bassist for Brit rock 'n' roll revival Showaddywaddy, "Under The Moon Of Love" (UK #1, 1976) and over 20 other UK Top 40 singles
1952 ● Ed Gagliardi / (Edward John Gagliardi) → Original bassist for arena rock Foreigner, "Double Vision" (#2, 1978), left to form The Spys with Foreigner keyboardist Al Greenwood in 1978, died from cancer on 5/11/2014, age 62
1952 ● Paul Jeffreys / → Bassist for glam-rock Cockney Rebel and later Be-Bop Deluxe, died with his new wife on the way to their honeymoon in the bombing of Pan Am 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland on 12/21/1988, age 36
1955 ● Scott Smith / (Donald Scott Smith) → Founding member and bassist for Canadian hard pop-rock Loverboy, "Turn Me Loose" (#35, Main #6, AUS #3, CAN #7, 1981) and eight other Top 40 hits, presumed drowned at sea when swept overboard from his 11-metre sailboat near the Golden Gate Bridge while from Vancouver to Baja California on 10/30/2000, age 45
1956 ● Peter Hook / → Bassist for post-punk Joy Division, then New Wave synth-dance-pop New Order, "Blue Monday" (Dance #5, 1983)
1957 ● Tony Butler / (Anthony Earle Peter Butler) → Bassist for Scottish art-folk-rock Big Country, "In A Big Country" (Mainstream Rock #3, 1983), sessions for The Pretenders, Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend and others
1958 ● Marc Fox / → Percussion and vocals for New Wave funk-pop Haircut 100, "Love Plus One" (#37, 1982)
1961 ● cEvin Key / (Kevin William Crompton) → Multi-instrumentalist and founding member of Canadian avant-industrial rock Skinny Puppy, "Testure" (Dance/Club #19, 1989), after disbandment in 1995 founded industrial noise group Download and issued several solo albums
1961 ● Henry Rollins / (Henry Lawrence Garfield) → Singer, songwriter, MTV host, record producer and frontman for hardcore L.A. punk Black Flag and the Rollins Band
1961 ● Les Warner / → Former drummer with hard rock/metal revival The Cult, "Fire Woman" (Mainstream Rock #4, 1989), now with a Vegas hotel house band
1962 ● Rob Ellis / → Producer, arranger and drummer for singer/songwriter P. J. Harvey, "50 ft Queenie" (UK #27, 1993) including her alt rock/punk-revival trio PJ Harvey
1966 ● Freedom Williams / (Frederick Brandon Williams) → Lead vocals for dance-pop C+C Music Factory, "Gonna Make You Sweat" (#1, 1991), left for an unsuccessful solo career
1971 ● Sonia / (Sonia Evans) → Brit pop singer, "You'll Never Stop Me Loving You" (UK #1, 1989) and "Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy" (Adult Contemporary #13, 1992)
1972 ● Todd Harrell / → Bassist for post-grunge alt rock 3 Doors Down, "Kryptonite" (#3, 2000)
1974 ● Robbie Williams / → Vocals for Brit teen dance-pop boy-band Take That, "Back For Good" (#7, 1995), then solo, "Millennium" (Adult Top 40 #22, 1999)
1976 ● Leslie Feist / → Award-winning Canadian singer, songwriter and guitarist with Broken Social Scene, "1 2 3 4" (UK #4, 2007), solo
1988 ● Aston Merrygold / → Vocals for Brit teen pop boy-band JLS (Jack The Lad Swing), "Everybody In Love" (Mainstream Top 40 #38, 2010)

February 14
1922 ● Murray The K / (Murray Kaufman) → Legendary rock 'n' roll impresario and radio DJ (WINS-am, WOR-FM, New York), self-appointed "Fifth Beatle" in the mid 60s, died of cancer on 2/21/1982, age 60
1926 ● Al Brodax / (Albert Philip Brodax) → TV producer with King Features Syndicate in the 60s, produced hundreds of "Popeye" cartoons and created the ABC-TV cartoon series The Beatles (1965-1969), then (over the Beatles' objections) convinced band manager Brian Epstein to back the now-classic, psychedelic "head trip" animated motion picture Yellow Submarine (1968), died from natural causes on 10/24/2016, age 90
1931 ● Phyllis McGuire / → Vocals for immensely popular sibling singing trio the McGuire Sisters, "Sugartime" (#1, 1958)
1934 ● Florence Henderson / → Actress and singer with a six-decade career on stage, film and TV, appeared in multiple Broadway shows and as the lead in the musical Fanny (1954-1956), hosted her own variety and cooking TV programs and guested on game shows, issued two albums of Broadway songs, appeared on Dancing With The Stars at age 76, best known as the upbeat mom Carol Brady on the hit sitcom The Brady Brunch (1969-1974), died of sudden heart failure on 11/24/2016, age 82
1934 ● Merl Saunders / → Multi-genre keyboardist, early bandmate with Johnny Mathis, collaborated with Jerry Garcia, the Grateful Dead, Mike Bloomfield, David Grisman and many other San Francisco artists in various bands, tours and recording projects, fronted his own bands and issued several albums of rock, blues-rock and New Age music, directed his own music label and worked with environmental charities, died from complications of a stroke on 10/24/2008, age 78
1937 ● Magic Sam / (Samuel Gene Maghett) → Chicago blues guitarist and singer, "Feelin' Good (We're Gonna Boogie)" (1963), died from a heart attack on 12/1/1969, age 32
1939 ● Blowfly / (Clarence Reid) → Mildly successful R&B/soul singer ("Nobody But You Babe," #40, R&B #7, 1969) and songwriter for himself and others, but best known for his alternate stage persona, the X-rated, proto-rapper Blowfly, under which he continued to perform and record until dying from liver cancer on 1/17/2016, age 76
1940 ● Lillie Bryant / → One half of the pop vocal duo Billy & Lillie, "La Dee Dah" (#9, 1958) and two other Top 100 hits in the late 50s
1943 ● Eric Andersen / → Greenwich Village folk singer/songwriter, "Thirsty Boots" (1966), continues to tour and release occasional albums
1943 ● Maceo Parker / → R&B/soul, funk and jazz saxophonist, played with James Brown in the 60s and George Clinton's Parliament/Funkadelic bands in the 70s, started a solo career in the 90s and issued eleven albums of soul/funk music, handled session work for Prince, Jane's Addiction and others
1945 ● Vic Briggs / → Lead guitar for British Invasion hard/blues-rock The Animals, "House Of The Rising Sun" (#1, 1964)
1946 ● Doug Simril / → Piano and guitar for blues-rock then psych-rock then pop-rock Steve Miller Band, "The Joker" (#1, 1974) and Boz Scaggs' backing band
1947 ● Tim Buckley / (Timothy Charles Buckley III) → Innovative, genre-blurring folk-psych-prog-rock singer and songwriter with little commercial success but plenty of influences, including his folk-rock and blues singer/songwriter son Jeff Buckley, died from a drug overdose on 6/29/1975, age 28
1950 ● Roger Fisher / → Guitarist and founding member of hard rock Heart, "Magic Man" (#9, 1976), left in 1980 and in 1988 co-founded Canadian power ballad rock Alias, "More Than Words Can Say" (#2, 1990)
1951 ● Kenny Hyslop / → Scottish journeyman drummer with glam-rock Slik, punk rock The Skids, synth-pop Simple Minds, "Don’t You, Forget About Me" (#1, 1985) and others
1963 ● D'wayne Wiggins / → R&B and blues guitarist, producer, composer and community activist, with his brother, Raphael Saadiq and cousin, Timothy Christian, founded R&B/dance Tony! Toni! Toné! ("Feels Good," #9, R&B #1, 1990), developed and signed Destiny's Child - the most successful girl group of all time - to his Grass Roots Entertainment label, worked with Alicia Keys, India Arie, Jamie Foxx and others, continues to tour with a reformed Tony! Toni! Toné!
1972 ● Rob Thomas / → Lead singer and principal songwriter for post-grunge alt rock Matchbox Twenty, "Bent" (#1, 2000), solo, vocals for Santana on pop-rock "Smooth" (#1, 1999)
1975 ● Scott Owen / → Stand-up bassist, singer and occasional songwriter for Aussie rockabilly The Living End, "Prisoner Of Society" (Modern Rock #23, 1997)
1978 ● Ryan Griffiths / → Lead guitarist for Aussie garage rock revival The Vines, "Get Free" (Mainstream Rock #27, 2002)

February 15
1888 ● Lawrence Wright / → Brit record shop owner and music publisher who founded Melody Maker magazine in 1926 and wrote or co-wrote over 600 songs between World War I and the early 60s, including "Among My Souvenirs" for Paul Whiteman (#1, 1928) and Connie Francis (#7, 1959), Melody Maker failed to report his death on 5/19/1964, age 76
1905 ● Harold Arlen / → Composer and songsmith with over 500 song credits, co-wrote the Oscar-winning "Over The Rainbow" and other songs in the movie The Wizard Of Oz (1939), other credits include "That Old Black Magic" (Glenn Miller, #1, 1942) and "Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive" (The Pied Pipers, #2, 1945) and several other songs now included in the Great American Songbook, died from cancer on 4/23/1986, age 81
1918 ● Hank Locklin / (Lawrence Hankins Locklin) → Country-pop crossover singer and songwriter with 70 chart singles, including six Country #1's and the crossover hit "Please Help Me, I'm Falling" (#8, Country #1, 1960), died from unreported causes on 3/8/2009, age 91
1939 ● Alvin Cash / (Alvin Welch) → St. Louis high schoolmate of Luther Ingram and Tina Turner, then fronted song-and-dance troupe The Crawlers with two brothers, their chanting, funky R&B/dance "Twine Time" (#14, R&B #4, 1965) was one of five hits he recorded with the group or as a solo act, died from ulcer problems on 11/21/1999, age 60
1941 ● Brian Holland / → Motown musical arranger and producer with the Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting team, co-wrote dozens of hits for The Supremes, The Four Tops, Martha & The Vandellas, The Isley Brothers and others, issued solo albums
1942 ● Glyn Johns / → Recording engineer and producer, mixed The Who's Who's Next album, worked with Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles' Let It Be sessions, Joan Armatrading, Steve Miller, Eagles, The Faces and Led Zeppelin
1944 ● Denny Zager / → Vocals in folk-pop-rock one hit wonder duo Zager & Evans, "In The Year 2525" (#1, 1969)
1944 ● Mick Avory / (Michael Charles Avory) → Drummer for Brit folk-pop-rock The Kinks, "You Really Got Me" (#7, 1964) from 1964 to 1984, played in various 60s revival and Kinks spin-off bands through the 00s
1945 ● John Helliwell / → Saxophonist for Brit prog-art-pop-rock Supertramp, "The Logical Song" (#6, 1979)
1947 ● David Brown / → Bassist for Latin-rock Santana, "Black Magic Woman" (#4, 1970) and the Boz Scaggs band, died from liver and kidney failure on 9/4/2000, age 53
1951 ● Melissa Manchester / → Folk-pop/adult contemporary singer and songwriter, "Midnight Blue" (#6, 1975), TV, film and stage actress
1954 ● David Ricketts / → Vocals, guitar and keyboards for New Wave synth-pop duo David & David, "Welcome To The Boomtown"(Top Rock #8, 1986), collaborated with Sheryl Crow
1959 ● Ali Campbell / (Alistair Ian Campbell) → Vocals for multiracial reggae-pop UB40, "Red Red Wine" (#1, 1988) and over 30 other Top 40 hits
1960 ● Mikey Craig / (Michael Emile Craig) → Bassist for new romantic synth-pop Culture Club, "Karma Chameleon" (#12, 1984)
1962 ● David Milner / → With twin brother Mike, vocals in Brit R&B/neo-soul-funk The Pasadenas, "Tribute (Right On)" (Dance/Club #27, UK #5, 1988)
1962 ● Mike Milner / (Michael Milner) → With twin brother David, vocals in Brit R&B/neo-soul-funk The Pasadenas, "Tribute (Right On)" (Dance/Club #27, UK #5, 1988)
1974 ● Mr. Lordi / (Tomi Petteri Putaansuu) → Founder and lead vocalist for Finnish heavy metal monster-masked Lordi, winners if 2006 Eurovision Song Contest with "Hard Rock Hallelujah"
1974 ● Stuart Richardson / → Bassist for Welsh alt hard rock Lostprophets, "Last Train Home" (Mainstream Rock #10, 2004)
1976 ● Brandon Boyd / → Co-founder and lead vocals for alt-metal Incubus, "Drive" (#9, 2001), solo albums and author
1976 ● Ronnie Vannucci, Jr. / → Drummer for pop-alt hard rock The Killers, "Mr. Brightside" (#10, 2005)
1977 ● Brooks Wackerman / → Drummer for funk-metal Infectious Grooves, in 2001 joined hardcore punk Bad Religion, "Infected" (Mainstream Rock #33, 1995), plus numerous side projects and sessions
1980 ● Conor Oberst / → Frontman, guitarist, lead vocals and songwriter for indie rock Bright Eyes, "Lua" (Hot Singles #1, 2004)
1981 ● Olivia Theresa Longott / → R&B/hip hop soul singer, member of G-Unit Records house band, vocalist on 50 Cent's "Candy Shop" (#1, 2005) plus two solo albums
1984 ● Gary Clark, Jr. / → Acclaimed Texas blues, blues-rock and R&B guitarist and actor whom Jambase.com called "the future of Texas Blues," his 2012 major-label debut LP Blak And Blu reached #6 in the U.S., the Netherlands and New Zealand, recorded with Sheryl Crow, Alicia Keys and Foo Fighters, among others

February 16
1916 ● Bill Doggett / → Piano jazz and organ-based R&B/honky tonk composer, arranger and performer of mostly instrumentals, his biggest and lasting hit being "Honky Tonk" (#2, R&B #1, 1956), died of a heart attack on 11/13/1996, age 80
1918 ● Patty Andrews / (Patricia Marie Andrews) → Vocals in hugely popular pre-60s all-girl sibling pop vocal trio The Andrews Sisters, "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" (#6, 1941), died from natural causes on 1/30/2013, age 94
1924 ● Jo Walker-Meador / (Edith Jospehine Denning) → First paid employee of the start-up Country Music Association, rose from secretary to a three-decade tenure as executive director, oversaw the growth of the organization from 200 to over 7,000 members, opened the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, started the CMA Awards and CMA Fest, retired in 1991 and elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1995, died from natural causes on 8/15/2017, age 93
1925 ● Bobby Lewis / → R&B/rock 'n' roll singer known for his signature hit "Tossin' And Turnin'" (#1, 1961), had a second Top 10 hit in "One Track Mind" (#9, 1961) but faded thereafter, continues to perform in the 10s
1932 ● Otis Blackwell / → Prolific early rock 'n' roll songwriter and producer, wrote "All Shook Up", "Return To Sender", "Don't Be Cruel", "Great Balls Of Fire" and "Fever", among many other hits recorded by a multitude of artists, died from a heart attack on 5/6/2002, age 70
1934 ● Hal Kalin / (Harold Kalin) → With twin brother Herbie, pop/rock 'n' roll one hit wonder duo The Kalin Twins, "When" (#5, 1958), the first twins to score a #1 hit, died from injuries in an auto accident on 8/24/2005, age 71
1934 ● Herbie Kalin / (Herbert Kalin) → With twin brother Hal, pop/rock 'n' roll one hit wonder duo The Kalin Twins, "When" (#5, 1958), the first twins to score a #1 hit, died from a heart attack on 7/21/2006, age 72
1935 ● Sonny Bono / (Salvatore Phillip Bono) → TV actor, musician, producer and singer with partner/wife in pop-rock Sonny & Cher, "I Got You Babe" (#1, 1965), elected mayor of Palm Springs, CA in 1988 and to the US Congress in 1994 (R-Cal.), died in a skiing accident on 1/5/1998, age 62
1940 ● Leon Ware / → Jazz and R&B songwriter and producer, helped define the silky-smooth sound of "quiet storm" R&B, collaborated with The Isley Brothers, Quincy Jones, Minnie Riperton, Michael Jackson and others but is best known for co-writing and producing Marvin Gaye's 1976 album I Want You (#4, R&B #1, 1976), died from complications of prostate cancer on 2/23/2017, age 77
1944 ● Betty Thatcher / (Betty Mary Newsinger) → Chief lyricist for Brit folk/prog rock Renaissance ("Northern Lights," UK #10, 1978) from the late 60s through the mid-80s then for various reformed variants, spinoffs and unrelated artists until her death from cancer on 8/15/2011, age 67
1946 ● Marvin Sease / → Novelty R&B singer and songwriter known for his explicit lyrics and ladies' man persona, his single "Ghetto Man" (1986) and the 10-minute "Candy Licker" (1987) became favorites in clubs and on jukeboxes across the Deep South and produced a cult following despite little radio airplay, his 15 studio albums had little commercial success except for Marvin Sease (#114, R&B #14, 1987), died from pneumonia on 2/8/2011, age 64
1949 ● Lyn Paul / (Lynda Susan Belcher) → Vocals for folk-sunshine pop The New Seekers, "I'd Like To Teach The World To Sing" (#7, 1972)
1956 ● James Ingram / → Grammy-winning R&B/soul-pop singer, songwriter, musician and producer with multiple hits, including the duet with Linda Ronstadt "Somewhere Out There" (#2, 1987) and solo "I Don't Have The Heart" (#1, 1990)
1958 ● Ice-T / (Tracy Morrow) → Grammy-winning R&B/hip hop producer and rapper, "New Jack Hustler" (Hot Rap Singles #3, 1991), founded rap metal Body Count and wrote lyrics to controversial song "Cop Killer" (1992), TV actor and host
1961 ● Andy Taylor / → Guitarist for New Wave pop-rock Duran Duran, "Hungry Like The Wolf" (#3, 1982), left in 1985 to form Power Station, "Some Like It Hot" (#6, 1985), later joined hard rock Thunder, "Dirty Love" (Mainstream Rock #10, 1991)
1962 ● Tony Kiley / → Drummer for New Wave pop-rock Blow Monkeys, "Digging Your Scene" (#14, 1986)
1963 ● Chris Duarte / → Texas blues-rock and jazz fusion singer, songwriter and guitarist, "Cleopatra" (Mainstream Rock #40, 1997)
1965 ● Dave Lombardo / → Co-founder and drummer for "Big Four" thrash metal Slayer, "Hate Worldwide" (#2, 2009)
1967 ● Damon Reece / → Drummer for gloomy post-punk Echo & The Bunnymen, then space rock/trance rock Spiritualized, "Lazer Guided Melodies" (UK #27, 1992)
1971 ● Steven Houghton / → Brit stage and TV actor, singer and songwriter, "Wind Beneath My Wings" (UK #3, 1997)
1977 ● Brad Walst / → Bassist for Canadian alt rock/punk metal band Three Days Grace, "Just Like You" (Mainstream Rock #1, 2004)
1990 ● The Weeknd / (Abel Testaye) → Juno-winning Canadian rapper whose career took off after he anonymously uploaded several tracks to YouTube under his stage name, later released multiple mixtapes, albums and single, including "Can't Feel My Face" (#1, 2015),

February 17
1902 ● Hoppy Jones / (Orville Jones) → Founding member, bass, vocals and string instruments for pioneering black R&B/doo wop group The Ink Spots, "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" (#2, R&B #1, 1943), de facto leader due to his seniority and ability to control egos of younger members, died from a cerebral hemorrhage at the height of the band's popularity after collapsing on stage in New York City during a performance on 10/18/1944, age 42
1922 ● Tommy Edwards / (Thomas J. Edwards) → One hit wonder R&B/soul singer, "It's All In The Game" (#1, 1958), died after suffering a brain aneurysm on 10/22/1969, age 47
1939 ● John Leyton / → Brit teen idol pop singer and actor, "Johnny Remember Me" (UK #1, 1961)
1940 ● Gene Pitney / → Stalwart pop/rock singer, musician and sound engineer with multiple hits prior to and during the 60s British Invasion, including "(The Man Who Shot) Liberty Valance" (#4, 1962), also wrote hits for others, including "Rubber Ball", "He's A Rebel" and "Hello Mary Lou", died in his sleep on 4/5/2006 while on tour in the UK
1947 ● Dodie Stevens / (Geraldine Ann Pasquale) → Girl-group era teenage pop one hit wonder singer, "Pink Shoe Laces" (#3, 1959)
1949 ● Doyle Bramhall / → Austin, Texas blues-rock drummer, played with Jimmie Vaughan in several bands in the 60s, formed The Nightcrawlers with Texas rock legend Stevie Ray Vaughan and wrote or co-wrote several songs for SRV, played with both Vaughans on their 1990 album Family Style, died from a heat attack on 11/12/2011, age 62
1950 ● Rickey Medlocke / → Founder and guitarist for Southern rock turned hard rock Blackfoot, "Highway Song" (#26, 1979), joined cross-town Jacksonville, FL rivals Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1996
1966 ● Melissa Brooke-Belland / → With sister Tracey Bryn, frontgal, vocals and guitar in college rock/indie pop-rock Voice Of The Beehive, "Scary Kisses" (Mainstream Top 40 #32, 1996), daughter of Bruce Belland of 50s pop vocal quartet The Four Preps
1967 ● Chanté Moore / → Award-winning adult contemporary R&B singer, "Chante's Got a Man" (#10, 1999), occasional stage actress and TV host
1970 ● Tim Mahoney / → Lead guitarist for hip hop/reggae/punk rock fusion band 311, "Love Song" (#59, Modern Rock #1, 200$)
1972 ● Billie Joe Armstrong / → Guitars, vocals and songwriting for post-grunge alt rock punk revival Green Day, "Boulevard Of Broken Dreams" (#2, 2004)
1972 ● Taylor Hawkins / → Drummer for Alanis Morissette's touring band, in 1997 joined post-grunge Foo Fighters, "Learn To Fly" (Mainstream Rock #2, 1999)
1974 ● Bryan White / → Country-pop crossover singer and songwriter with eight Country Top 10 and four Country #1 hits, seven of which crossed-over to the lower pop charts, including "I'm Not Supposed To Love You Anymore" (#101, Country #4, 1996), currently crowd-funding a new independent album through Kickstarter
1977 ● Chris Gentry / → Guitarist for short-lived, super-hyped 90s Britpop Menswear, "Being Brave" (UK #10, 1996)
1978 ● Svein Berge / → Norwegian electronic musician and one half of the duo Royksopp ("Do It Again," Dance #1, 2014), worked on several remixes for Coldplay, Depeche Mode and others
1981 ● John Hassall / → Bassist for indie/punk revival The Libertines, "Can't Stand Me Now" (UK #2, 2004), now fronting indie psych-rock Yeti
1981 ● Paris Hilton / → Socialite, heiress to a share of the Hilton Hotel fortune, reality TV actress, fashion model, tabloid fodder, Internet sex tape star and sometime dance-pop singer, "Stars Are Blind" (#18, Dance/Club #1, 2006)
1982 ● Lupe Fiasco / (Wasalu Muhammad Jaco) → Record producer, music entrepreneur, MC and Grammy-winning rapper, "Superstar" (#10, 2007), CEO of 1st and 15th Entertainment
1988 ● Arin Ilejay / (Richard Arin Ilejay) → Former drummer for metalcore Confide and heavy metal Avenged Sevenfold, "Bat Country" (#60, Mainstream Rock #2, 2005)
1989 ● Stacey McClean / → Vocals in pre-fab teen pop S Club Juniors (a spin-off of S Club 7), "One Step Closer" (UK #2, 2002) and six other UK Top 15 hits in two years
1991 ● Ed Sheeran / → Indie folk-pop and R&B singer, songwriter and guitarist, started with self-issued releases in 2005 before signing with Atlantic Records in 2011, since then has charted eight UK Top 10 singles, including "Thinking Out Loud" (#2, UK #1, 2014)

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