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2013 Death Notices

Kenneth Daniel Ball ( 22 May 193 – 7 March 2013) was an English jazz musician, best known as the bandleader, lead trumpet player and vocalist in Kenny Ball and his Jazzmen.

Ball was born in Ilford, Essex. At the age of 14 he left school to work as a clerk in an advertising agency, but also started taking trumpet lessons.  He began his career as a semi-professional sideman in bands, whilst also working as a salesman and for the advertising agency. He turned professional in 1953 and played the trumpet in bands led by Sid Phillips, Charlie Galbraith, Eric Delaney and Terry Lightfoot before forming his own trad jazz band – Kenny Ball and his Jazzmen – in 1958.  His dixieland band was at the forefront of the early 1960s UK jazz revival.

In 1961 their recording of Cole Porter’s “Samantha” became a hit, and in March 1962 they reached No. 2 on both the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart and the UK Singles Chart, with “Midnight in Moscow”. The record sold over one million copies, earning gold disc status.

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenny_Ball

Wolverton Mountain” was a hit that launched Claude King’s career as an American country singer/songwriter in 1962. The song was written together with Merle Kilgore and was based on a real character, Clifton Clowers, who lived on Wolverton Mountain, north of Morrilton, Arkansas. The song spent nine weeks at the top of the Billboard country chart in the US in 1962. It was also a giant crossover hit, reaching number six on the pop chart and number three on the easy listening chart.

Claude King’s singles:  The Comancheros ( 1961 ),  Wolverton Mountain ( 1962 ),  The Burning Of Atlanta ( 1962 )

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claude_King

 

 

Thomas Charles “Stompin’ Tom” Connors – (February 9, 1936 –  March 6, 2013) was one of Canada’s most prolific and well-known country and folk singer-songwriters. Focusing his career exclusively on his native Canada, Connors is credited with writing more than 300 songs and has released four dozen albums, with total sales of nearly 4 million copies.  Connors died at age 77 in his home in Ballinafad, Ontario on March 6, 2013, of renal failure. Stompin’ Tom Connors is survived by his wife, Lena, four children and several grandchildren.

His songs have become part of the Canadian cultural landscape. Three of his best-known songs — Sudbury Saturday Night, Bud the Spud and The Hockey Song — play at every home game of the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey team. The Hockey Song is played at games throughout the National Hockey League.

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stompin%27_Tom_Connors

Traditional Bluegrass Musician, Alvin Breeden Passes

Alvin Breeden, 70, a traditional bluegrass musician and an enthusiast of the late Don Reno’s style of banjo died on February 26, 2013 at Martha Jefferson Hospital in Charlottesville, VA. The cause of death was not disclosed. The Preddy Funeral Home Chapel in Madison, VA., confirmed the death. 

Breeden played professionally from the time he was 16 years of age. During his career Breeden played with Dr. Ralph Stanley; and banjo extraordinaire, Don Reno. The Osborne Brothers recorded a song, “Fastest Grass Alive,” written by Paul Craft in Breeden’s honor.

 

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Harvey Lavan “Van” Cliburn, Jr., (pron.: /ˈklaɪbɜrn/; July 12, 1934 – February 27, 2013) was an American pianist who achieved worldwide recognition in 1958 at the age of 23, when he won the first quadrennial International Tchaikovsky Piano Competition in Moscow at the height of the Cold War. Van Cliburn toured domestically and overseas.

He played for royalty, heads of state, and every U.S. president from Dwight D. Eisenhower to Barack Obama.

His recording of Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 was the first album by a classical artist to sell more than 1 million copies.

Cliburn received the Kennedy Center Honors in 2001. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2003 by then President George W. Bush, and, in October 2004, the Russian Order of Friendship, the highest civilian awards of the two countries. He was also awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award the same year and played at a surprise 50th birthday party for United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. He was a member of the Alpha Chi Chapter of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and was awarded the fraternity’s Charles E. Lutton Man of Music Award in 1962. He was presented a 2010 National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama.

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Van_Cliburn

Malinda Gayle “Mindy” McCready ( November 30, 1975 – February 17, 2013) was an American country music singer. Active from 1995 until her death in 2013, she recorded a total of five studio albums. Her debut album, 1996’s Ten Thousand Angels, was released on BNA Records and was certified 2× Platinum by the RIAA, while 1997’s If I Don’t Stay the Night was certified Gold. 1999’s I’m Not So Tough, her final album for BNA, was less successful, and she left the label. A self-titled fourth album followed in 2002 on Capitol Records.

Overall, McCready’s four studio albums accounted for twelve singles on the Billboard country singles charts.

This figure includes the Number One hit “Guys Do It All the Time”.

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindy_McCready

 

James Anderson DePreist (November 21, 1936 – February 8, 2013) was an American conductor. DePreist was one of the first African-American conductors on the world stage. He was the Director Emeritus of Conducting and Orchestral Studies at The Juilliard School and Laureate Music Director of the Oregon Symphony at the time of his death.

In 2005, President George W. Bush presented James DePreist with the National Medal of Arts, the nation’s highest honor for artistic excellence.

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_DePreist

The Andrews Sisters were an American close harmony singing group of the swing and boogie-woogie eras. The group consisted of three sisters: contralto LaVerne Sophia (July 6, 1911 – May 8, 1967), soprano Maxine Angelyn “Maxene” (January 3, 1916 – October 21, 1995), and mezzo-soprano Patricia Marie “Patty” Andrews (February 16, 1918 – January 30, 2013). Throughout their long career, the sisters sold well over 75 million records (the last official count released by MCA Records in the mid-1970s). Their 1941 hit “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” can be considered an early example of rhythm and blues or jump blues.

The Andrews Sisters’ harmonies and songs are still influential today, and have been covered by entertainers such as Bette Midler, The Puppini Sisters, Christina Aguilera, and The Three Belles.

Patty Andrews died of natural causes at her home in Northridge, California on January 30, 2013, just 17 days before her 95th birthday. Walter Wechsler, her husband of 60 years, died on August 28, 2010, at the age of 88. Patty and Walter were parents to foster daughter Pam Dubois.  The sisters were interred in the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Glendale, California, close to their parents.

Read more at:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Andrews_Sisters

Patti Page

Clara Ann Fowler (November 8, 1927 – January 1, 2013), known by her professional name Patti Page, was an American singer, one of the best-known female artists in traditional pop music. She was the best-selling female artist of the 1950s, and sold over 100 million records.Her nickname was The Singin’ Rage (a phrase commonly followed by “Miss Patti Page”).

Page signed with Mercury Records in 1947, and became their first successful female artist, starting with 1948’s “Confess”. In 1950, she had her first million-selling single “With My Eyes Wide Open, I’m Dreaming”, and would eventually have 14 additional million-selling singles between 1950 and 1965.

Read more at Wikipedia

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