"Ferrer was the son of top 1950s singer Rosemary Clooney and actor Jose Ferrer, and first cousin to George Clooney."
Alan Jabbour, who died today, was best known (to those who know of him at all) as a fiddler and a gatherer of fiddle tunes. His name and influence permeate American traditional music. If you like Old Crow Medicine Show, the Avett Brothers, Chris Thile, Carolina Chocolate Drops, SteelDrivers, etc., you are enjoying the results of Jabbour's life work. [more inside]
Mário Soares,the spirited Socialist leader who deftly steered Portugal from authoritarian rule to democracy, fended off a Communist push for power, led his country into the EU and helped its people recover a sense of confidence lost under almost half a century of miserly dictatorship, has died in Lisbon aged 92. Mr. Soares started an underground Socialist movement after becoming disillusioned with the leadership of the Communist Party, then the only organized opposition in the country. He began a tour of Europe in 1967 to drum up support from other Socialists, but he was jailed on his return and, in March 1968, banished without trial to the remote equatorial island of São Tomé. Mário Soares Dies at 92; Guided Portugal’s Shift to Democracy (NYT) [more inside]
Philosopher Derek Parfit has died. The author of the landmark Reasons and Persons was 74. If you've never heard of Parfit, you may have heard of the Repugnant Conclusion (which highlights paradoxes in how we understand obligations to future generations). Or if you've ever mused on what would happen to you if you used a Star Trek-style transporter, you may enjoy Parfit's treatment of the philosophical implications in the teletransportation paradox. For more about Parfit, read this profile by Larissa MacFarquhar in the New Yorker.
Father Mulcahy ---William Christopher, the actor best known for playing Fr. Francis Mulcahy on the smash sitcom “MASH,” has died, CBS Los Angeles reports. He was 84. [more inside]
Richard Adams, author of Watership Down, has died aged 96. Read this article on "the power of not-quite-appropriate children's books".
The epitome of old Hollywood glamour While Gabor had multiple acting credits, her greatest performance was playing herself: She was famous for her accented English (calling everyone “darling,” which came out “dah-link”), eccentric name, offscreen antics (including a 1989 incident in which she slapped a Beverly Hills cop) and one-liners about her jewels, nine marriages and ex-husbands. Despite her glamorous image, her life, especially in later years, was marred by battles between her much-younger husband Frederic Prinz von Anhalt and her daughter.
General write ups abound. The Financial Times does a nice write up of I Believe in Father Christmas (audio version here.) Original version here With Ian Anderson here . [more inside]
WASHINGTON (AP) — John Glenn, whose 1962 flight as the first U.S. astronaut to orbit the Earth made him an all-American hero and propelled him to a long career in the U.S. Senate, died Thursday. The last survivor of the original Mercury 7 astronauts was 95.
Actor Andrew Sachs, best known for his beloved portrayal of a hapless Spanish waiter named Manuel on the British sitcom Fawlty Towers, has died at 86...
Grant Tinker was one of the best known and most successful producers of network television shows of the 1970s and 1980s, and also the man who rescued NBC after the disastrous years of Fred Silverman's chairmanship. He founded MTM Enterprises in 1970 to create a television property for his then-wife, Mary Tyler Moore. [more inside]
Ron Glass, who played Ron Harris on "Barney Miller" and Shepherd Book on "Firefly," has died at 71. [more inside]
Sharon Jones, the Grammy-nominated soul and funk singer With Dap-Kings, died following her "heroic battle against pancreatic cancer" at the age of 60.
Jones recorded six albums with the Dap-Kings, but it was her exhilarating live shows, which functioned as equal parts Baptist church revival, Saturday night juke joint and raucous 1970s Las Vegas revue, that showcased the singer's unparalleled energy. In venues filled with people half her age, Jones was the most dynamic person in the room, bolting onstage and commanding the crowd like her idol James Brown. It was homage without mimicry; respecting the soul and funk elders that defined the genres while displaying seemingly boundless vitality.Sharon Jones, previously. [more inside]
Leon Russell collaborator with Joe Cocker and Elton John and a fine performer in his own right has passed on at 74
The man that Daniel Raeburn suggested was "the most widely read theologian in human history," for better or worse, has died. A report from the official social media of Chick Publications states that Jack T. Chick has passed away at the age of 92. The wide, insane, paranoid, KJV-only, anti-Catholic, anti-Masonic, anti-Semitic, and, of course, loving world of Chick's work has appeared in the finest of public transit and mall restrooms for decades. An accessible and delightful in-depth critical review of his work can be found in The Imp, available here [nsfw] as a PDF [direct link].
Tom Hayden, member of the Chicago Seven, one of the founders of the SDS, politician and leading anti-Vietnam War activist has passed away at the age of 76. Link to recent NPR podcast from the DNC.
"a sought-after acoustics genius" One third of Bolt, Beranek and Newman, which helped build ARPANET, Beranek was an important acoustical engineer. Died at 102.
The Great Barrier Reef of Australia passed away in 2016 after a long illness. It was 25 million years old.
Sir Neville Marriner, the co-founder and long-time conductor of the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, has died at age 92. (NYT link) [more inside]
Arnold Palmer has died at the age of 87. One of the all-time golfing greats, a world-class philanthropist, and an advertiser's dream was awaiting heart surgery when he passed away on Sunday, 25 September 2016. [more inside]
Phyllis Schlafly, leader of the opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment to the United States Constitution and founder of the conservative political group Eagle Forum, has died at 92 from cancer.
Rudy Van Gelder, best known for his work at legendary Bluenote Records, influential sound engineer, dead at 92. (Previously on Metafilter, RVG) Spotify playlist of his recordings.
Gene Wilder has died at age 83. Gene Wilder, who regularly stole the show in such comedic gems as “The Producers,” “Blazing Saddles,” “Young Frankenstein,” “Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” and “Stir Crazy,” died Monday at his home in Stamford, Conn. His nephew Jordan Walker-Pearlman said he died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. [more inside]
"Toots" Thielemans died in his sleep in Brussels on Monday, August 22, 2016. He was 94. [more inside]
After a long illness and declining health actor Kenny Baker has passed away today. He was active in film making for over 50 years and will be best remembered for his portral of droid R2-D2 in the Star Wars series.
Seymour Papert, Co-Founder and Chairman of the Logo Foundation went PENUP today. Many of us who learned programming in the 1980s started with LOGO, which spawned other langauges like StarLogo. Today, its spiritual successor is probably Scratch.
Cartoonist Richard Thompson (Cul de Sac, Richard's Poor Almanac) has passed away at the age of 58 due to effects from Parkinson's Disease.
Dr Kate Granger has died at the age of 34, three years after a hospital stay with post-operative sepsis prompoted her to start the "Hello, my name is..." campaign. The campaign has now spread across the entire NHS, and out of this has also come the Kate Granger Compassionate Care Awards. She wrote two books and a blog, as well as tweeting about her experiences as a doctor becoming a patient, and having terminal cancer. Three days before she died, she hit her fundraising target for the Leeds Cancer Centre. [more inside]
Pretty talented director Thomas Rhazi passed away this week of his injuries following a motorcycle accident. He was an up and coming director whose work ranged from the critically acclaimed "Pusher" for English indie rockers alt-J, to the Vimeo Staff-Picked "GoGo!" for Bauuer. More links inside. [more inside]
Acclaimed Iranian film director Abbas Kiarostami has passed away. His better known films include Taste of Cherry (wikipedia) and The Wind Will Carry Us (wikipedia), the former of which, Ebert famously loathed.
Michael Herr, author of Dispatches, dies aged 76. [The Guardian] Michael Herr, the American writer and war correspondent famous for writing Dispatches, described as “the best book I have ever read on men and war in our time” by John le Carré, has died aged 76. Born in 1940, Herr was one of the most respected writers of New Journalism, the novelistic reportage pioneered by the likes of Tom Wolfe and Truman Capote, where the journalist is as much part of the story as their subject. He practised this most famously in his book Dispatches, about his time working as a war correspondent for Esquire magazine in Vietnam between 1967 to 1969.
"The story of women’s basketball is so incomplete without Pat Summitt, it’s almost not worth telling. Not just the winningest coach in D1 history, Summitt is the modern game, her success mirroring its rise, her ascendancy propelling the sport out of obscurity. And now she’s gone." [more inside]
RIP Bud Spencer (born Carlo Pedersoli, 31 October 1929 – 27 June 2016). Italian actor, swimmer, and politician, he rose to international fame playing Trinity's portly half-brother in 1970s spaghetti westerns "They Call me Trinity" and "Trinity is Still my Name", setting off a multi-decade film career with his frequent co-conspirator, Terence Hill.
Bill Cunningham, the street fashion photographer who rode his bike all over NYC in that functional blue smock, has died. If you haven't seen this 2011 documentary (previously) you've missed a gem. See also his video channel at the NYT and this New Yorker profile from 2009. His assistant posted this photo to Instagram 2 days ago, saying that Bill was under the weather, but some reports are saying that he was hospitalized after suffering a stroke recently.
Dr Ralph Stanley has passed at age 89
A 2002 Grammy winner and perpetrator of the high lonesome sound he was the oldest living member of the Grand Ole Opry.
O Death YT[more inside]
Best known for her YA novels, author Lois Duncan has died at the age of 82. A prolific writer, her books have thrilled multiple generations and have also been adapted into a few movies you may have heard of. [more inside]
Hockey legend Gordie Howe has died. In Gordie's 5 decade career he set records for most seasons and games played as well as #2 for all time career goals.
RIP cartoonist Mell Lazarus, who wrote Miss Peach and Momma. NY Times obit. He also wrote two books, including The Boss is Crazy, Too. [more inside]
Alan Young, who played Wilbur on the TV show Mr. Ed, and much more recently was the voice of Scrooge McDuck in recent productions, including the cartoon show DuckTales, has passed away at the age of 96. [more inside]
NY Times obituary. On May 11, he retired from 60 Minutes after 46 years. "His Canadian sensibility grounded his work," said fellow journalists. 1998 profile: "He never played it safe." He famously reported on the horrors of Vietnam in Cam Ne: When President Lyndon Baines Johnson was outraged, he wanted to know if Safer was a Communist. "When he was told that Morley was 'not a communist, but just a Canadian', LBJ apparently said `Oh well, I knew he wasn’t an American'."