Phillip Kives, the founder of K-Tel International, has passed away at age 87. (previously) [more inside]
One of Africa's most well known and influential musicians, and an international style icon, Congolese singer Papa Wemba died suddenly during a performance in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, on April 24, at age 66. Aside from the video clips contained within this NPR obituary, I'd recommend the entertaining feature film from 1987 starring Papa Wemba, La Vie est Belle.
Lonnie Mack, one of rock & roll's earliest guitar heroes, role model to Stevie Ray and a fine singer to boot, passed yesterday at 74.
Doris Roberts, an ubiquitous stage and screen actor from the United States, passed away April 17th at the age of 90. [more inside]
His full name was Prince Rogers Nelson. He was 57 years old when he passed away today at his home, Paisley Park, outside of Minneapolis MN [more inside]
Garry Shandling, the comedian most famous as creator and star of The Larry Sanders Show, has died at age 66. [more inside]
One of the only football (soccer) players to have invented a move that is known by his name: The stunning Cruyff Turn. "The move became instantly world famous, seared indelibly on the brain, stored forever and available for replay on your mind’s eye-player." In slow motion.
Ken Howard, best known as Coach Reeves on the late, lamented 1970's sports dramedy The White Shadow, and head of the Screen Actors Guild has passed on at age 71.
Princess Joan of Sealand (née Joan Bates) has died after a long illness, spending her last days in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex. The Principality of Sealand (previously) was declared an independent nation by Roy Bates on September 2, 1967, making the former carnival queen Joan a princess on her 38th birthday. Her Royal Highness is survived by her daughter Penny and her son Michael, who serves as the Prince Regent of the abandoned nautical military fort.
One of the great composers of our time, Peter Maxwell Davies, has died. Some of his best known works include 8 Songs for a Mad King, Kommilitonen!, and 10 fantastic symphonies. The great anti-establishment composer was perhaps most well known, however, for a 2005 incident regarding eating swans that fell on his island home. Rest in peace, Max! [more inside]
Sir Ken Adam, who designed those iconic sets for Bond films, as well as the car for the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, not to mention Dr. Strangelove's War Room, has passed away. He also won Academy Awards for Art Direction for Barry Lyndon and The Madness of King George.
Andrzej Zulawski, the legendary Polish cult director, has died at the age of 75 after a long battle with cancer. A non-conformist visionary of world cinema, his approach to storytelling is idiosyncratic and characterised by explosions of violence, sexuality, and despair. The actors in his movies have played out the most intensely high-pitched emotions in cinema history which inspired the French to coin the term 'Żuławskien', meaning 'over the top'. [more inside]
Bob Elliott, the legendary radio comedian has passed away at 92. It all began in Boston in the late 1940s, when Bob Elliott and Ray Goulding started goofing around on the air during rain delays of Red Sox games. Soon, they were a hit nationally as well, with such well known characters as Wally Ballou the long-suffering radio newsman and the adventures of Mary Backstayge, Noble Wife. Bob and Ray's comedy career spanned decades until Goulding's death in 1990. [more inside]
Revered arthouse icon Jacques Rivette, whose films explored the fine line that separates reality from theater and paranoid fantasy, died at his home in Paris on Friday of complications related to Alzheimer’s. [more inside]
Concepcion Picciotto, who held vigil outside the White House for more than three decades, died today. [more inside]
Peter Huttlinger, who died on January 15th, was an American guitarist known for impressive fingerstyle arrangements, in particular this one [SLYT]
Actor Alan Rickman, active in theater and film for 30 years and known for roles such as Professor Severus Snape in Harry Potter, has died at age 69 from cancer.
Pat Harrington Jr., ‘Schneider’ of TV’s ‘One Day at a Time,’ dies at 86 : "As the character was conceived, Schneider was a married man and an unrepentant adulterer who used fake maintenance problems to enter women’s apartments. Mr. Harrington, however, doubted that such an unpleasant type would fit in a show filled with far more likeable people. [more inside]
Jason Wingreen died at the age of 95 on Christmas Day, 2015. A character actor best known for his role of Harry the bartender on All in the Family until his iconic roll as the one true voice of Boba Fett made him famous to Star Wars fans everywhere in 1980. [more inside]
"Wayne Rogers, best known for playing Captain 'Trapper' John McIntyre on TV comedy series 'M.A.S.H.,' died Thursday in Los Angeles from complications of pneumonia. He was 82." [more inside]
BBC: "Former Match of the Day presenter Jimmy Hill, one of English football's most influential figures, died on Saturday at the age of 87. As chairman of the Professional Footballers' Association, he led the campaign for the scrapping of maximum wages for professional footballers. He played 297 games for Fulham and was later manager and chairman at Coventry. Hill - diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2008 - made more than 600 appearances as presenter of Match of the Day." Guardian Report - Guardian Obituary.
Dr. Peter Rasmussen: retired oncologist, hospice physician and advocate for Oregon's Death with Dignity law, was given a terminal brain cancer diagnosis in Spring 2014. The Oregon Statesman Journal followed Dr. Rasmussen's end-of-life journey in articles, photos and videos, as he grappled with the same issues he once fought for on behalf of his own patients. Harper's Magazine: When I Die. [more inside]
Philthy Animal Taylor, drummer for Motorhead's golden age lineup*, has passed away. RIP, you Philthy bastard. *this clip shows that along with being a great drummer, he could really cut a rug
Melissa Mathison dies at 65 - L.A. Times (Steve Chawkins)" "Mathison, 65, who portrayed children as sensitively heroic, died Wednesday at UCLA Medical Center. The cause was neuroendocrine cancer, her brother Dirk Mathison said. Mathison’s film credits also include “The Black Stallion” (1979), “The Escape Artist” (1982) and “The Indian in the Cupboard” (1995)."
Fred Thompson, actor and senator who ran for president, dies at 73 - "An attorney who worked on the Watergate hearings, Thompson became a successful character actor after playing himself in the 1985 film Marie, based on a case in which he represented a whistleblower who exposed corruption in the government of Tennessee. He went on to be star in the TV series Law & Order." [more inside]
meanwhile, Abe Vigoda is still kickin' it. Albert Francis "Al" Molinaro was an American actor in television and films, most notably as Al Delvecchio, the owner of Arnold's on Happy Days and its spin-off show Joanie Loves Chachi. He was 96 years old. The cause of death was gallstones Molinaro had decided not to have surgically removed due to his age, Molinaro’s son told TMZ. Molinaro died in a Wisconsin hospital. [more inside]
Maureen O'Hara, Irish-born star of The Quiet Man and more, dies aged 95. [The Guardian] [more inside]
James Getty, who lent his voice to the recordings played at the Lincoln Memorial, has died at 83. (He lived in Gettysburg, PA.)
Yogi Berra, master Yankee catcher with goofy wit, dies at 90. I guess it's over now.
Gary Richrath, guitarist for REO Speedwagon, and writer of classic rock songs like "Riding The Storm Out", "Golden Country", and "Take It On The Run" has passed on at 65.
Kyle Jean-Baptiste died in an accident on Friday at the age of 21. Mr. Jean-Baptiste joined the company of Les Miserables this summer after his college graduation, and became the first African-American man to play Jean Valjean on Broadway on June 23, while understudying the role. He recently announced on Facebook that he would be joining the Broadway cast of The Color Purple alongside Jennifer Hudson. His last performance as Valjean was on Thursday night. [more inside]
James Henry "Red" Duke passed away today at the age of 86. With his Texas accent and folksy expressions, Dr. Duke was most famous for his 15 year running TV series Health Reports which covered topics like hyperthyroidism, kidney stones, and even stress management. [more inside]
Merl Reagle, the imaginative and irrepressibly amusing verbal virtuoso who created the crossword puzzles published each week in The Washington Post Magazine and in many newspapers, died Aug. 22 in a hospital in Tampa. He was 65. (Washington Post obituary) [more inside]
Seminal post-modern choreographer Sally Gross has died at 81: "Because that's what we exist on, is the breath. It's the inhale and the exhale that guarantees us that we're living. And it's only because we're alive that we can even take on the idea of performing." [more inside]
Marlene Sanders’ Feminist Legacy [Slate obit] - "She wrote of her accomplishments: 'As I look back on my career, the women's movement provided an exceptional point when time, place and position all came together to give me the power and focus to contribute to the country’s awareness of the status of women.'" [more inside]
Satoru Iwata, president of Nintendo and former president and star programmer at HAL Laboratories (he was one of their first programmers), main coder of Earthbound, programmer of NES/Famicom Balloon Fight, coder on some early games in the Kirby series and many other games besides, and the author of the Iwata Asks columns on Nintendo's website, has died at 55 of a bile duct growth. Kotaku article. The Verge.
Roger Rees has passed away at the age of 71. Mr. Rees, who most recently starred in The Visit on Broadway with Chita Rivera, won the Olivier and Tony Awards for Nicholas Nickleby. Among his many memorable roles on television, Rees created the roles of Robin Colcord on Cheers and Lord John Marbury on The West Wing. He is survived by his husband, and partner of more than 30 years, Rick Elice. [more inside]