Thursday, August 09, 2018

Latest music deaths

Time to catch up briefly on a few music deaths over the last month or so.
The latest is that of Louisiana swamp pop singer G G Shinn, at the age of 78, one of the stars of Ponderosa Stomps in 2011 and 2017 (picture above). I wasn't too familiar with him when he appeared in 2011, dressed in a velvet smoking jacket and coming across, as one of my friends remarked, like the 'Louisiana Liberace.' Once a member of the Fabulous Boogie Kings, he was a fine singer with star quality, as his 2017 performance showed.
Another former Ponderosa Stomp artist (in 2008) who has died is rockabilly singer Lorrie Collins, who was one half of fifties rock and roll act the Collins Kids. Lorrie was just 16 when she appeared as Ricky Nelson's girlfriend on the TV show 'The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet' and teamed up with her brother Larry as a successful rockabilly act. Larry is still in great form as a guitarist, as he showed at last year's Viva Las Vegas.
New Orleans piano player Henry Butler is another superb artist who has passed on. When I first saw him at Jazzfest as part of the Henry Butler Trio in 1989 he was playing jazz, but he was a very capable of New Orleans styled boogie woogie, as he showed at the Porretta Soul Festival in 2008.
One of the first pop singers who caught my attention way back in 1957 was Tab Hunter, whose
version of 'Young Love', was a smash hit. My sister brought it home as a 78, as she did with the follow up, Ninety Nine Ways. Tab wasn't a great singer but was very successful as a film actor, appearing in over 40 movies with the likes of John Wayne and Robert Mitchum. He was 86 when he died.
The Vinyl Word raises a glass to them all.


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