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.
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.
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]
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]
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]
Yogi Berra, master Yankee catcher with goofy wit, dies at 90. I guess it's over now.
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]
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]
If you've ever visited a Disney theme park, you likely saw the work of Blaine Gibson. Gibson died earlier this month at the age of 97. [more inside]
Burt's Bees (SLYT) Ingram Berg Shavitz, known as Burt Shavitz, was an American beekeeper and businessman notable for founding the Burt's Bees personal care products company with businesswoman Roxanne Quimby. Burt's likeness is featured on the Burt's Bees products. [more inside]
Academy Award-winning composer James Horner died in a plane crash Monday. He was known for the scores to Titanic (the soundtrack for which sold 27 million copies), Braveheart, Apollo 13, and A Beautiful Mind among many others. [more inside]
RIP Sir Christopher Lee, actor most famous for playing Dracula in numerous horror films but also notable roles as Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man, Scaramanga in the James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun and Saruman in The Lord of the Rings and Hobbit film trilogies [more inside]
Former NY Post editor and film critic Vincent Musetto has met his own deadline. Vincent, aged 74, was generally acknowledged as the author of the famous tag HEADLESS BODY IN TOPLESS BAR. You can watch an interview with him here.
"The life-changing message of 'On Writing Well' is: simplify your language and thereby find your humanity." William Zinsser, journalist and nonfiction writer, passed away earlier this month. His book, "On Writing Well," is one of the definitive works on the craft of writing. [more inside]
Lois Lilienstein, of Sharon, Lois & Bram fame, died at age 78. She was probably best known in Canada for The Elephant Show.
John Renbourn, the highly influential English guitar player, and one of the co-founders of Pentangle, has died. There's a nice appreciation from The Guardian here. Farewell, Mr. Renbourn.
Roy Doty, awesome illustrator, particularly known for drawing the popular, 50-year-running Wordless Workshop instructional comic strip for Popular Science, Family Handyman and syndication, the puzzle page for Make, and also the covers and illustrations for popular Judy Blume books Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, Superfudge and Otherwise Known As Shelia The Great, among many other things, has died at 92. This episode of the Danny Dee Show (YouTube 27m) shows off his drawing and narration skills. Here's some illustrations from his website. Here's a sample panel of Wordless Workshop. [more inside]
Terry Pratchett, best known for the Discworld series consisting of about 40 books, died today after a long, well publicized battle with Alzheimer's in which he's also been outspoken on right to die issues.
Sam Simon, writer, producer, philanthropist and co-creator of The Simpsons has passed away of colorectal cancer at the age of 59. Previously.
Anthony Mason, iconic Knicks player, dead at 48. Daily Beast: Soul of the 90's. Where are they now in Sports? video interview.
Poet, author, director, actor, cultural icon... Leonard Nimoy has passed away at age 83 from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Rest well, Spock, you will be missed.
Today we bid a sad farewell to the last of the old-school Mississippi Hill Country bluesmen: Mr. Robert Belfour was a purveyor or that gritty, driving, riff-based, often one-chord Hill Country style pioneered by people like Mississippi Fred McDowell, and in more recent years popularized by artists like RL Burnside, Junior Kimbrough and Jessie Mae Hemphill. Let's take a listen, then, as we pay our respects to the "Wolfman", to some of his rocking, soulful blues. Here's Black Mattie, I Got My Eyes On You, Hill Stomp, Go Ahead On, My Baby's Gone, Done Got Old and You Got Me Crying. And here's an hour-long recording from February 2013, via NPR: Robert Belfour: Live In Concert.
Long time Parks and Recreation writer and recurring character, inventor of the Humblebrag, curator of the goofiest segment on Comedy Bang Bang, and very sexy drummer for the joke band Don't Stop Or We'll Die, Mr. Harris Wittels passed away today suddenly. He will be missed. (Many links extraordinarily NSFW) [more inside]