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Posts Tagged ‘Red Hot Chili Peppers’

RIP, Jack Richardson (May 13, 2011) Canadian Record Producer

Posted by on May 13, 2011

Jack Richardson
July 23, 1929 – May 13, 2011

Jack Richardson was a respected Canadian record producer who was ultimately honored by having the Juno Awards’ Producer of the Year Award named  after him.  He was also an instructor at the most prestigious music schools in Canada.  While working for an ad agency in 1968, Richardson created a bottle-cap reimbursement campaign for the Canadian Coca-Cola company.   Those who purchased designated Cokes could collect the bottle caps and ultimately redeem them for a promotional album, A Wild Pair, which featured the Guess Who on one side and the Staccatos (later known as the Five Man Electrical Band) on the other.  The campaign was so successful that the album reportedly would have achieved gold status had it been an “official” release.   Richardson went on to produce several Guess Who albums and singles including their biggest hits, “These Eyes” and “American Woman.”   He also produced Bob Seger’s landmark album, Night Moves, as well has hit albums by the likes of Alice Cooper, Poco, Badfinger, and the Irish Rovers.  His son, Garth Richardson is an in-demand producer as well who has worked with Rage Against The Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and System Of A Down.  Jack Richardson was 81 when he passed away on May 13, 2011.

Thanks to Roch Parisien for the help

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Died On This Date (July 2, 2008) Natasha Shneider / Sang And Played Keyboards For Eleven

Posted by on July 2, 2010

Natasha Shneider
May 22, 1956 – July 2, 2008

Born in Russia, Natasha Shneider, was a multi-instrumentalist and singer for, most notably, ’90s rock band Eleven.  Shneider moved to the United States, where her band, with former Red Hot Chili Pepper, Jack Irons and husband, Alain Johannes, had a few minor hits through the early ’90s thanks to their hard alternative rock sound that was part grunge and part funk-metal.    In later years, Shneider and Johannes lent their talents on recordings by No Doubt, Chris Cornell, and Queens Of The Stone Age, with whom they also toured. Natasha Shneider lost her battle with cancer on July 2, 2008.

Thanks to Craig at Number1Albums

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Died On This Date (June 25, 1988) Hillel Slovak / Red Hot Chili Peppers

Posted by on June 25, 2010

Hillel Slovak
April 13, 1962 – June 25, 1988

hillelHillel Slovak was the founding guitarist of Los Angeles Alterna-Funk-Metal gods, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and by some accounts, their true heart and soul. Thanks in part to Slovak’s passion for funk, the band were able to create an alchemy of sonic power that married the best of funk, punk rap and metal into something that has since been imitated but never equaled. It should also be noted that Slovak actually taught Chili Peppers’ Mike “Flea” Balzary how to play the bass and the world would never be the same. Meeting in high school, the band was formally launched in 1983 and quickly hit the local stages. Their super high energy sound and shows quickly launched them to the top of the local scene and secured them a deal with EMI Records. It was around this time that Slovak began to experiment with heroin which lead to turmoil within the band as the drug began to adversely affect his playing. He was in and out of the group over the next few years, but to fans, he was and will always be as much a part of RHCP as anyone. Sadly, Slovak died of an heroin overdose on June 25, 1988.

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Died On This Date (June 6, 2006) Billy Preston

Posted by on June 6, 2010

Billy Preston
September 2, 1946 – June 6, 2006

Besides winning a Grammy for his own work, keyboardist Billy Preston made major contributions to some of the greatest names in pop music history. He can be heard playing alongside the Rolling Stones, Little Richard, Ray Charles, Elton John, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, Sam Cooke, the Jackson 5, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and of course, the Beatles, sometimes being credited as “the 5th Beatle.” In fact he is one of only two non-Beatles to receive performance credit on any Beatles album – the other being Tony Sheridan. Preston signed to the Beatles’ Apple Records in 1969 and began a streak of hits that included “Nothing From Nothing,” “Will It Go Round In Circles,” and the Grammy winning, “Outta Space.” The ’70s found Preston very active mostly recording and touring with the Rolling Stones. The ’80s however, were a dark time for Preston as he had a few run-ins with the law. He was arrested and convicted of insurance fraud for setting his own house on fire, and in 1991 he was arrested for attacking a prostitute after discovering he was a transvestite and not of legal age. Most of his troubles were likely attributed to his dependency on cocaine and alcohol. He beat those demons in the early ’90s and got back to work mostly in a support capacity on the keyboards, working with the likes of Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood. Preston had kidney problems throughout his later life, likely due to his substance abuse problems. He received a kidney transplant in 2002. Billy Preston died of kidney failure on June 6, 2006.

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Died On This Date (December 3, 2008) Elmer Valentine / Co-founded The Whiskey a Go Go, The Roxy, The Rainbow Bar & Grill

Posted by on December 3, 2009

Elmer Valentine
June 16, 1923 – December 3, 2008

Photo by Art Streiber

Photo by Art Streiber

Elmer Valentine played a critical role in the growth of popular music in the Los Angeles area by co-founding the legendary Sunset Strip clubs, the Whiskey a Go Go and the Roxy.  Born and raised in Chicago where he worked on the police force, Valentine transplanted to the L.A. area in 1960.  In 1964, Valentine and three partners opened the Whiskey which would help define the west coast rock scene of the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s.  Acts like the Doors, the Byrds and Buffalo Springfield played some of their earliest gigs there during the ’60s, while the likes of Great White, Motley Crue and Guns ‘n Roses did the same during the ’80s.  And of course, there were countless others between and since.  In 1966, he and investers that included Lou Adler, opened the Roxy (and later, the infamous Rainbow Bar & Grill next door).  Like the Whiskey, the Roxy hosted its own share of legendary early shows.  That list includes Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, Warren Zevon, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Frank Zappa.  The Roxy’s small upstairs bar, On The Rox was also the site of some of rock music’s most notorious incidents.  In the mid ’70s, it played host to John Lennon’s infamous “lost weekend” gatherings with Keith Moon, Harry Nilsson, and Alice Cooper.  And in March of 1982, it was reportedly the last place John Belushi over-indulged before calling it a night and dying of an overdose in his hotel room.  Elmer Valentine sold his share of the Whiskey during the ’90s, but held on to his share of the Roxy and Rainbow until he passed away at the age of 80.

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Died On This Date (November 21, 1995) Matthew Ashman / Adam & The Ants; Bow Wow Wow

Posted by on November 21, 2009

Matthew Ashman
1960 – November 21, 1995


Matthew Ashman was one of the great true guitarists of the new wave era.  He brought in a gritty rockabilly sound thanks to his big Gretsch hollow body guitar. He first came on to the scene during the late ’70s when he was asked to play guitar in Adam Ant’s band, Adam & the Ants.  After the release of the band’s first album, 1979’s Dirk Wears White Sox, Sex Pistol’s manager Malcolm McLaren convinced Ashman and the rest of the band to leave Ant and work with him and his 14-year-old new wave prodigy, Annabella Lwin.  The band they formed with Bow Wow Wow who would prove to be influential on such U.S. bands as Red Hot Chili Peppers.  Their biggest hit came in 1982 with a cover of “I Want Candy,” oringinally recorded by the Strangeloves in 1965.  Bow Wow Wow broke up in 1983, so Ashman continued on with different bands over the next several years, but nothing reached the success he had seen with Bow Wow Wow.  On November 21, 1995, Matthew Ashman, 35, died of complications from diabetes.

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