Monday, May 23, 2011

Don't fear the reaper. (Tribute Vol. 1)

     As music winds on, and time plays on there are many tragedies. Some very talented people pass away, are murdered, or even commit suicide. A lot of my favorites have taken their lives, had their lives taken or passed and we miss them. As a music fan, you miss some of these people.

Brad Delp (June 12, 1951 - March 9, 2007) He was the lead singer of Boston, along with other bands like Return to Zero, and Beatlejuice. They say he was the nicest man to grace the Earth...but listening to some songs (Hitch a Ride, Peace of Mind) you can hear there was something deep down bothering him since the first album. There are stories of how nice he was. One guy said he was back stage, and the security guard said no cameras, and Brad walked over, took the camera, got next to him, and smiled and took the picture and gave the camera back and walked away to rehearse. Not many people would do that. Unfortunately, in a bad twist, Boston was getting ready for a new album, he was touring and preparing for a show with his Beatles cover band,  a few months before he was to wed his new wife, he committed suicide. His soon bride to be left the house in New Hampshire to go grocery shopping, and in her absence, he lit a charcoal grill and closed all ventilation to the bathroom, and asphyxiated on CO2. Pinned to his shirt lapel was "Mr. Brad Delp. Je suis une âme solitaire". Translation, I am a lonely soul.

John Lennon Oct. 9, 1940 - Dec. 8, 1980) - Giving credit to one of the highly talented writers of all time, and one half of the greatest writing duos with Paul McCartney. John Lennon set his footprint in the mold of time. He was an innovator, and a true bandsman. His often smooth sounds made any fan wonder "what if?" Could there be peace? In John's mind, there should have been. Who knows what music would have been like if he had not been shot. Multi talented (harmonica, citar, guitar, banjo, and piano were some of his mainstays,)  and a fantastic producer (Harry Nillson, Ringo) and collaborator (Elton John.) He was shot 4 times in the back by Mark David Chapman.

George Harrison (Feb. 25, 1943-Nov. 29, 2001.) - Known as the quiet Beatle, and youngest of the group, he is argued today as the most talented. He was a joker, and is often blamed for the problems in The Beatles. He was the first success of the 4 after the breakup. Creating a triple album from all his backlogged songs. He had success with Eric Clapton and Ringo Starr backing him up, and a supergroup The Traveling Wilburies. Though he was attacked in his home in 1999 by a mad man claiming he was possessed by Harrison, this did not kill him. He died of lung cancer in 2001. His remaining days it is said he was visited by Paul and Ringo, and was in stable mind when they were around.

Michael Hutchence (Jan. 22, 1960 -  Nov. 22, 1997) - The lead singer of INXS, He was an Australian singer, actor, and avid ladiesman. Though he had another band called Max Q. while INXS went on break, and acted in a few movies and did some work on soundtracks, his longest run was with INXS whom he formed from the shrapnel of a former band called Doctor Dolphin. Though there were many attempts on Michael's life, he formed a severe depression in his later life, he made tabloids when he started dating Paula Yates, the ex-wife of Bob Geldoff, which made tabloids point out Hutch as the bad guy, and as his close friend Princess Diana said, "I love it when you are in the takes me off for a while." After a long phone conversation with Bono, on the final leg of the Elegantly Wasted/20 year tour, in a hotel room after a party, it is said that Michael called Bob Geldoff and cursed him out, and hanged himself by his belt in a hotel room. It was later said to have been done in full blown depression, and was declared auto erotic asphyxiation. The song "Stuck in a Moment" by U2 is said to be the conversation Bono would have had with his former neighbor, friend, and rival after he was awoken to received the news on a flight.

Cliff Burton (February 10, 1962 – September 27, 1986) - Recruited to Metallica from a band called Trauma, he was self declared to be the best bass player after the loss of his brother. He said Trauma was getting "too commercial" and seemed to want to head off in a new direction. He joined Metallica and as his father proclaimed, Cliff would headbang through the entire show and complain the next day that his neck hurt. Cliff was short lived as in a gamble, he took his band mate Kirk Hammett's bed. As the bus driver lost control in Sweden (claiming there was black ice,) Cliff was thrown out a window and violently crushed by the bus.

Dave Williams (February 29, 1972 – August 14, 2002) - Dave was considered a pioneer of black metal, and a very nice man. He was lead singer of Drowning Pool and had high success with their song "Bodies." Dave's booming voice was one to be reckoned with, and in my opinion, never duplicated. their success made way for a few more hits off the album Sinner to squeeze through easily as singles. Though the success was short lived and Dave passed away on the tour bus of a heart disease in Manassas, VA right before Ozzfest. Emotions ran high that day, and his microphone was passed on to his friend Cristian Machado of Ill Nino. His main dream was to buy his parents a house, and the sales of the released DVD Sinema did just that.

Robert Palmer ( January 19, 1949 – September 26, 2003),  - Solo blues pop singer and singer of supergroup Power Station (made up of Duran Duran and 70's disco band "Chic" members,) was critically acclaimed for his voice. He was a major supporter of UNICEF and divided his estate between his 5 kids and the organization. He passed away after a dinner with close friend Jack Bruce (cream) of a heart attack. His former neighbor, Tina Turner sang a version of "Addicted to Love" in his honor.

Kurt Cobain  (February 20, 1967 – April 5, 1994) - Kurt was the high energy lead singer/guitarist of Grunge band "Nirvana." It is said that he had a very good and deranged sense of humor that fit in with his "mad at the world" music. With his famous idea of "read my diary and figure me out if I die" attitude, he and his band mates took on the world as never seen before. Lyrically he would put his life out in the open for people to interpret, though it was often interpreted wrong. Kurt had a few relationships (including the lead singer of Bikini Kill, who when he met was so anxious he got sick.) As with many of Kurt's life struggles and acheivements, they lead to the lyrics you hear today. As he fought off Courtney Love's advances, unsure he wanted to be tied down. During a taping of Saturday night live, he was asked by Victoria Jackson if "Weird Al" Yanchovich could parody "Smells Like Teen Spirit." It was thought of as a compliment that they had made it as a long as the song wasn't about food. He also found out Love was pregnant with his child, and he married her. Though his last years of life he struggled with cocain addiction (earning him the nickname "Kurt Cocaine,") After multiple suicide attempts, Kurt was found by an electrician coming toi his house to do some work. The man assumed he was sleeping until he saw the shot gun, and was assumed to have been lying there dead for days.

Dimebag Darrell Abbott (August 20, 1966 – December 8, 2004) - After the invite to join Megadeth (declined because his brother could not join too,) and Pantera was done, Abbot joined multiple side projects with his brother. Including a band with former Pantera bass player Rex, and country superstar David Allen Coe called Rebel meets Rebel, a few Ace Frehely tributes, Dime and his brother/long time band mate Vinnie joined a band called Damage Plan, with (former guitarist for Rob Halford) Patrick Lachman and friend "Bobzilla" on bass. They put out one album, and on December 8th, a former marine named Nathan Gale climbed up on stage and allegedly blamed the Abbot brothers for breaking up Pantera and plagiarising his lyrics. He shot Dimebag in the head, which is said to have killed him instantly. As people trying to save the other band members, and Dime were either killed or injured in heroics, the gun man was subdued by a police officer who came in from behind. This is the one that REALLY hurts to talk about, all the innocent lives that were taken, the talent that was lost, and the fact that Dime's brother Vinnie had to watch his brother die is uncalled for. Dime was an avid KISS fan and had an autographed (by Ace) KISS tattoo on his chest, and Gene Simmons donated a KISS Kasket to the Abbott family. Phil was not allowed at the funeral, because of the families wishes after harsh words were said about the two musicians.

     Though the impact is put on us through their work, whether they were taken from us by their own hands, by someone else, or by a natural cause, it still hurts to see them go, and know they will never play or sing another note. Though we hope they are at peace, we have their former work to remember them by, and they will forever be part of a legacy. So till next time, keep hitting the HIGH NOTES.

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