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Obituaries

Robin Gibb at the meet-and-greet after the Dubai Jazz Festival on 1 March 2008

Robin Hugh Gibb, CBE (born 22 December 1949) is a singer and songwriter. He is best known as a member of the Bee Gees, co-founded with his twin brother Maurice and elder brother Barry. Born in the Isle of Man to English parents, the trio started their musical career in Australia, and found major success when they returned to England. With record sales estimated in excess of 100 million, the Bee Gees became one of the most successful pop groups of all time. Born to Barbara (née Pass) and Hugh Gibb on the Isle of Man, Robin was…

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Donna Summer in 2009

LaDonna Adrian Gaines (born December 31, 1948), known by her stage name, Donna Summer, is an American singer/songwriter who gained prominence during the disco era of the 1970s. She has a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Summer is a five-time Grammy winner and was the first artist to have three consecutive double albums reach number one on the US Billboard chart. She also charted four number-one singles in the United States within a thirteen-month period. Donna Summer was…

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Onstage, October 1, 2005

Chuck Brown (born August 22, 1936) is a guitarist and singer who is affectionately called “The Godfather of Go-go”. Go-go is a subgenre of funk music developed in and around Washington, D.C. in the mid- and late 1970s. While its musical classification, influences, and origins are debated, Brown is regarded as the fundamental force behind the creation of go-go music. Brown’s musical career began in the 1960s playing guitar with Jerry Butler and The Earls of Rhythm, joining Los Latinos in 1965…

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Helm playing mandolin in 1971

Mark Lavon “Levon” Helm (born May 26, 1940), is an American rock multi-instrumentalist and actor who achieved fame as the drummer and frequent lead and backing vocalist for The Band. Helm is known for his deeply soulful, country-accented voice, and creative drumming style highlighted on many of The Band’s recordings, such as “The Weight”, “Up on Cripple Creek”, “Ophelia” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”. His 2007 comeback album Dirt Farmer earned the…

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Montrose in 1974

Ronnie Montrose (born November 29, 1947, San Francisco, California, United States) is an American rock guitarist who has headed his own bands as well as performing with a variety of musicians, including Sammy Hagar, Herbie Hancock, Van Morrison, The Beau Brummels, Boz Scaggs, Beaver & Krause, Gary Wright, Tony Williams, The Neville Brothers, Dan Hartman, Edgar Winter and Johnny Winter. In 1969, he started out in a band called Sawbuck…

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Jones in Sydney, Australia, 1968

David Thomas “Davy” Jones (born 30 December 1945) is an English rock singer-songwriter and actor best known as a member of the Monkees. Jones was born in Manchester, England on 30 December 1945. At the age of 11, he started his acting career and appeared on the British television soap opera Coronation Street as Ena Sharples’s grandson, Colin Lomax. He also appeared in the BBC police series Z-Cars. However, after the death of his mother from emphysema when he was 14 years old, he left acting and trained as a jockey with Basil Foster…

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Houston performing “Saving All My Love for You” on the Welcome Home Heroes concert in 1991

Whitney Elizabeth Houston (August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012) was an American recording artist, actress, producer, and model. In 2009, the Guinness World Records cited her as the most-awarded female act of all time. Her awards include two Emmy Awards, six Grammy Awards, 30 Billboard Music Awards, and 22 American Music Awards, among a total of 415 career awards in her lifetime. Houston was also one of the world’s best-selling music artists, having sold over 170 million albums, singles and videos worldwide. Houston began…

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Johnny Otis

Ioannis Alexandros Veliotes (December 28, 1921 – January 17, 2012), better known as Johnny Otis, was an American singer, musician, talent scout, disc jockey, composer, arranger, recording artist, record producer, vibraphonist, drummer, percussionist, bandleader, impresario and pastor. Born in Vallejo, California, he is commonly referred to as the “Godfather of Rhythm and Blues”. Otis was the child of Greek immigrants Alexander J. Veliotes, a Mare Island…

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Etta James

Etta James performing in San Jose, California, in 2000.

Etta James (born Jamesetta Hawkins; January 25, 1938 – January 20, 2012) was an American singer. Her style spanned a variety of music genres including blues, rhythm and blues, rock and roll, soul, gospel and jazz. Starting her career in the mid-1950s, she gained fame with hits such as “Dance With Me, Henry”, “At Last”, “Tell Mama”, and “I’d Rather Go Blind” for which she wrote the lyrics. She faced a number of personal problems, including drug addiction, before making a musical resurgence in the late…

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Leslie Carter

Leslie Barbara Carter (June 6, 1986 – January 31, 2012) was an American pop singer best known as the sister of fellow singers Nick and Aaron Carter. Leslie Carter was born in Tampa, Florida, the third of five children of Jane Elizabeth (née Spaulding) and Robert Gene Carter (born September 23, 1952). She was born at the Garden Villa Retirement Home, where the Carter family were living and working at the time. She was the older sister of Aaron Charles (born December 7, 1987), and younger sister of…

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