May 03 2015
Rhythm and Blues legend Ben E. King has died at the age of 76. Born Benjamin Earl Nelson on September 28, 1938, in Henderson, North Carolina, and moved to Harlem, New York, in 1947.
Ben E King appeared at a time when pop music was pausing for breath between the wakeup call sounded by the first generation of American rock’n’rollers and the blast of energy provided from across the water by the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. His distinctive voice, shaped by the fervour of black church music but capable of a suavely seductive romanticism, was heard on such hits as Spanish Harlem and Stand By Me.
King, who has died aged 76, first made his name as the lead singer of the Drifters, with a handful of hit singles that embodied the best elements of Brill Building pop, in which the sounds of rhythm and blues and gospel music were brought to bear on custom-made songs with simple, catchy and inventive melodies, swathed in imaginative, often sophisticated arrangements.
Save the Last Dance For Me
Feb 27 2015
Mr. Nimoy announced that he had the disease last year, attributing it to years of smoking, a habit he had given up three decades earlier. He had been hospitalized earlier in the week.
His artistic pursuits – poetry, photography and music in addition to acting – ranged far beyond the United Federation of Planets, but it was as Mr. Spock that Mr. Nimoy became a folk hero, bringing to life one of the most indelible characters of the last half century: a cerebral, unflappable, pointy-eared Vulcan with a signature salute and blessing: “Live long and prosper” (from the Vulcan “Dif-tor heh smusma”).
Dec 22 2014
Gravel voiced British rocker, Joe Cocker died today at his home in Crawford, Colorado after a battle with small cell lung cancer. He was best known for his memorable Woodstock performance of The Beatles’ With A Little Help from My Friends in 1968 and his duet in 1980 with Jennifer Warnes, “Up Where We Belong,” that appeared in the movie “An Officer and a Gentlemen.” Joe is survived by his wife of 27 years, Pam; his brother, Victor; his step-daughter, Zoey Schroeder; and his two grandchildren, Eva and Simon Schroeder.
Sep 05 2014
Iconic comedienne Joan Rivers passed away on Thursday, September 4, a week after suffering a cardiac arrest during an outpatient procedure at a private endoscopy clinic. She was 81 years old and had spent 50 years in show business.
In the almost 50 years since she burst onto the scene on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, Rivers ascended to the pinnacle of American showbusiness – even as she skewered its excesses with her scathing wit.
A workaholic, Rivers had been hosting an online weekly talk show called In Bed with Joan, and had just filmed a special award-show episode of E!’s Fashion Police before being taken ill. She was frequently performing live stand-up, and had finished the fourth season of Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best, the reality show in which she starred with her daughter. [..]
Rivers never made a secret of the surgical procedures that significantly altered her looks. Instead, they became a source of material for her act. “I’ve had so much plastic surgery, when I die they’ll donate my body to Tupperware,” she once said.
Her daughter, Melissa, released this statement yesterday:
PHOTO: Statement from Melissa Rivers on Joan Rivers' death pic.twitter.com/4l06qk1J0l
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) September 4, 2014
In her 2012 best selling book, Ms. Rivers laid out the plans for her funeral.
When I die (and yes, Melissa, that day will come; and yes, Melissa, everything’s in your name), I want my funeral to be a huge showbiz affair with lights, cameras, action . . . . I want craft services, I want paparazzi and I want publicists making a scene! I want it to be Hollywood all the way. I don’t want some rabbi rambling on; I want Meryl Streep crying, in five different accents. I don’t want a eulogy; I want Bobby Vinton to pick up my head and sing “Mr. Lonely.” I want to look gorgeous, better dead than I do alive. I want to be buried in a Valentino gown and I want Harry Winston to make me a toe tag. And I want a wind machine so that even in the casket my hair is blowing just like Beyoncé’s.
Her funeral will be held Sunday in Manhattan at Temple Emmanual-El.
Aug 13 2014