Watch 1000 Musicians Perform Foo Fighters’ ‘My Hero’ In Tribute To Taylor Hawkins

ByQuyen Anne

Dec 19, 2023

1000 Italian musicians have performed a rousing rendition of Foo Fighters’ 1997 anthem ‘My Hero’ in tribute to the band’s late drummer Taylor Hawkins.

Back in July 2015, Foo Fighters fan Fabio Zaffagnini assembled a 1000-strong group of musicians called Rockin’ 1000 and they performed an incredible version of ‘Learn To Fly’ in the small city of Cesena.

Alongside the viral video, which has amassed more than 60 million views, Zaffagnini wrote: “Our call is to ask the Foo Fighters to come and play for us and give a concert in Cesena.”

Dave Grohl tweeted in response “Ci vediamo a presto, Cesena…. xxx Davide” (“See you soon, Cesena”), and the Foo Fighters duly performed a concert there in November 2015.

Since then, Rockin’ 1000 have unveiled further covers including David Bowie’s ‘Rebel Rebel’ in 2016 and Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ in 2017, and they’ve performed concerts across Europe.

On 14th May, Rockin’ 1000 played a concert in front of 50,000 people at the Stade de France in Paris, where they covered songs by Pink Floyd, The Who, AC/DC and Guns N’ Roses to name but a few.

However, the standout moment of the night came when they performed Foo Fighters’ ‘My Hero’ in honour of Taylor Hawkins, who died aged 50 in March.

Alongside the video, Rockin’ 1000 wrote: “One thousand musicians dedicating this song to one drummer: Taylor Hawkins.”

Watch Rockin’ 1000’s Taylor Hawkins tribute:

In April 2021, Dave Grohl spoke of his reaction to his seeing the original ‘Learn To Fly’ performance by Rockin’ 1000 six years earlier.

“I remember that day (I saw it), it was a hugely emotional moment,” Grohl said. “You just don’t think of these things when you’re writing your songs with your friends… scribbling these words on a notepad.”

He added: “One of the cool things about this experience was it was a direct connection and request from people to the band. It was like ‘Hey, would you please come play our town?’ I thought that was really beautiful that they would come up with this insane plan!

“These moments show you the reach of music and the connection it was with people you’ve never met thousands of miles away. It just took my breath away.”

Rock stars we’ve sadly lost in 2022:

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Michael Lang dies aged 77© Getty

Michael Lang

Michael Lang, the organiser and co-creator of Woodstock, died on 8th January 2022 aged 77. Lang passed away at Sloan Kettering hospital in New York City following a battle with a rare form of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Lang co-founded and organised Woodstock Music and Art Fair in Bethel, New York from 15th to 18th August 1969 – an event that became firmly entrenched into rock n’ roll folklore and boasted performances from The Who, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead, Joan Baez, Sly and the Family Stone, The Band and Jimi Hendrix to name but a few. Lang went on to organise the 25th anniversary event in 1994 and the ill-fated 30th anniversary celebration, Woodstock ’99. He also owned and ran the record label Just Sunshine Records, founded the Michael Lang Organization (MLO), and he managed and produced a diverse array of artists including Billy Joel, Joe Cocker and Red Hot Chili Peppers.

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Burke Shelley dies aged 71© Getty

Burke Shelley

Budgie singer, bassist and songwriter Burke Shelley died aged 71 on 10th January 2022. He passed away at Heath Hospital in his hometown of Cardiff having suffered ill health for several years – he was battling Stickler syndrome and suffered an aortic aneurism on two occasions. Founded in the late 1960s, by 1971 with the release of their eponymous debut album, Budgie became one of the torchbearers of the hard rock and heavy metal scene and they influenced countless bands including Metallica who have released covers of ‘Crash Course in Brain Surgery’ and ‘Breadfan.’ Iron Maiden also covered ‘I Can’t See My Feelings’ and Van Halen performed ‘In For The Kill!’ during their live shows in their embryonic days. Burke Shelley was the longest serving member of Budgie and stayed with the band until their split in 1988, and for both their reunions between 1995 and 1996 and 1999 to 2010. He appeared on all 11 of their studio albums.

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Ronnie Spector dies aged 78© Getty

Ronnie Spector

Former Ronettes singer Ronnie Spector, known as the ‘bad girl of rock’n’roll’, died aged 78 on 12th January 2022. Famed for her iconic voice, style and beehive hairstyle, she scored huge hits with The Ronettes including ‘Be My Baby’, ‘Baby I Love You’, and ‘Walking In The Rain’ and she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007. Her family said in a statement: “Ronnie lived her life with a twinkle in her eye, a spunky attitude, a wicked sense of humour and a smile on her face. She was filled with love and gratitude.”

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Meat Loaf dies aged 74© Getty

Meat Loaf

Meat Loaf, who was born Marvin Lee Aday, died on Thursday 20th January aged 74. A cause of death hasn’t been revealed. Famed for his brilliantly epic and bombastic rock anthems, Meat Loaf was one of the best-selling rock stars of all time and sold 43 million copies of his seminal 1977 album ‘Bat Out of Hell’, which he made alongside composer Jim Steinman. Sixteen years after the first album, Meat Loaf and Steinman joined forces again for ‘Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell’, which spawned the global megahit ‘I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That)’. Alongside his fabled musical output, Meat Loaf was a prolific actor on stage, television and film. His numerous credits include Fight Club, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny, Wayne’s World and even Spice World: The Movie.

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Don Wilson dies aged 88© Getty

Don Wilson

Don Wilson, the co-founder and rhythm guitarist of the influential instrumental surf rock quartet The Ventures, died at his home in Tacoma, Washington on Saturday 22nd January 2022 aged 88. He was the last surviving member of the classic line-up of the band that scored hits including 1960’s ‘Walk, Don’t Run’ and their 1968 cover of the ‘Hawaii Five-O Theme.’ The group were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008. Wilson’s son Tom said: “Our dad was an amazing rhythm guitar player who touched people all over world with his band, the Ventures. He will have his place in history forever and was much loved and appreciated. He will be missed.”

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Jon 'Jonny Z' Zazula dies aged 69© Getty

Jon ‘Jonny Z’ Zazula

Jon Zazula, the co-founder of influential heavy metal imprint Megaforce Records, died aged 69 on Tuesday 1st February 2022. He passed away in Florida from complications of the rare neuropathic disorder chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and osteopenia. Jonny Z’s passing came 13 months after the death of his wife and Megaforce Records co-founder Marsha Zazula from cancer. The Zazulas founded Megaforce Records in 1982 and they helped launch the career of the then fledgling San Francisco heavy metallers Metallica by releasing their seminal first two studio albums, ‘Kill ‘Em All’ (1983) and ‘Ride The Lightning’ (1984). Megaforce Records also released Anthrax’s first five studio albums from 1984’s ‘Fistful of Metal’ through to 1990’s ‘Persistence of Time’, and Ace Frehley, Living Colour, Testament, Overkill, Ministry, King’s X, Stormtroopers Of Death, Fozzy, Bad Brains and Manowar are just some of the many acts who have been on their roster of the past four decades.

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Ian McDonald dies aged 75© Getty

Ian McDonald

Ian McDonald, the esteemed multi-instrumentalist and co-founder of King Crimson and Foreigner, died from cancer on Wednesday 9th February. He was 75 years old. McDonald was part of King Crimson’s first line-up in 1969 and alongside co-writing the songs, he performed saxophone, flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, Mellotron, harpsichord, piano, organ, vibraphone and backing vocals on King Crimson’s masterpiece debut album ‘In the Court of the Crimson King.’ He later performed alto saxophone on King Crimson’s 1974 album ‘Red’ and two years later McDonald co-founded Foreigner. He remained with Foreigner for four years and contributed to three studio albums – ‘Foreigner’ (1977), ‘Double Vision’ (1978) and ‘Head Games’ (1979) – and hit songs including ‘Cold as Ice’, ‘Hot Blooded’ and ‘Double Vision.’

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'Big' John Harte dies aged 70© N.Y Rocks TV / YouTube

‘Big’ John Harte

‘Big’ John Harte, who worked as a bodyguard and security for KISS and Iron Maiden, died aged 70 on Friday 11th February 2022 in Hollywood, Florida. Harte also worked with Prince and Billy Idol, amongst others. Paying tribute, Gene Simmons tweeted: “Rest In Peace, John Harte. A wonderful man. He was our security guy in the 70s. Our prayers and condolences to his family.” Paul Stanley wrote: “How very sad. “Big John” Harte was with us from the beginning and has always been family.” Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain commented: “John had worked with us for several years and I recently had a great visit with him, laughing and sharing stories together. A great guy and valued member of the family who will be sadly missed!” A cause of death hasn’t been revealed.

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Procol Harum's Gary Brooker dies© Getty

Gary Brooker

Procol Harum singer, pianist and composer Gary Brooker died on 19th February 2022 following a battle with cancer. He was 76 years old. A statement on the band’s website read: “With the deepest regret we must announce the death on 19 February 2022 of Gary Brooker MBE, singer, pianist and composer of Procol Harum, and a brightly-shining, irreplaceable light in the music industry. Aged 76, he had been receiving treatment for cancer, but died peacefully at home.” Brooker founded Procol Harum with his friend Keith Reid in 1966 and a year later the band scored a Number 1 hit with their timeless anthem ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale.’ Brooker’s melancholic vocals and plaintive piano playing on ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ helped it become an enduring classic and it remains ever popular today. He was the band’s sole constant member and appeared on all 12 of their studio albums. Outside of Procol Harum, he collaborated with Kate Bush, George Harrison and Eric Clapton amongst others.

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Mark Lanegan dies aged 57© Getty

Mark Lanegan

Former Screaming Trees frontman, Queens of the Stone Age vocalist and esteemed solo artist Mark Lanegan died on 22nd February 2022 aged 57. A statement on his Twitter account read: “Our beloved friend Mark Lanegan passed away this morning at his home in Killarney, Ireland. A beloved singer, songwriter, author and musician he was 57 and is survived by his wife Shelley.” Lanegan shot to fame in the mid 1980s as a member of pioneering grunge band Screaming Trees, and he first worked with Queens of the Stone Age on their seminal 2000 album ‘Rated R’. He became a permanent member of QOTSA in 2002 for their ‘Songs for the Deaf’ album and he guest appeared on ‘Lullabies to Paralyze’, ‘Era Vulgaris’, and ‘…Like Clockwork.’ An esteemed solo artist in his own right, he also collaborated with Manic Street Preachers, Isobel Campbell of indie band Belle and Sebastian, Greg Dulli of The Afghan Whigs in The Gutter Twins, Moby, Melissa Auf der Maur, and many more.

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Nicky Tesco dies© Getty

Nicky Tesco

Nicky Tesco, the former frontman of punk group The Members, died on Saturday 26th February 2022. A simple statement on his Facebook page read: “26.02.22. Mr Tesco has left the building. Thanks for everything.” No cause of death has been revealed. Tesco co-founded The Members in 1976 and, after various line-up changes, three years later the band released their debut album ‘At the Chelsea Nightclub’. The record the Number 12 hit ‘The Sound of the Suburbs’, which was championed by John Peel and remains the band’s enduring anthem to this day. Tesco released three albums with The Members before their split in 1983 and went on to become an actor and writer.

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Taylor Hawkins dies aged 50© Getty

Taylor Hawkins dies aged 50

Taylor Hawkins

Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins died at the age of 50 on Friday 25th March 2022. The band said in a statement: “The Foo Fighters family is devastated by the tragic and untimely loss of our beloved Taylor Hawkins. His musical spirit and infectious laughter will live on with all of us forever. Our hearts go out to his wife, children and family, and we ask that their privacy be treated with the utmost respect in this unimaginably difficult time.” Taylor Hawkins’ death came hours before Foo Fighters were due to headline Festival Estereo Picnic in Bogotá, Colombia. After previously performing with Alanis Morissette, Taylor Hawkins joined Foo Fighters in March 1997 shortly after the band had recorded their second album ‘The Colour and the Shape.’ Hawkins went on to perform and co-write all of Foo Fighters’ studio albums from 1999’s ‘There Is Nothing Left to Lose’ through to February 2021’s ‘Medicine at Midnight.’ A phenomenal musician, Taylor Hawkins was a captivating and vivacious drummer behind the kit who relished performing live. Hawkins and Dave Grohl often swapped roles at Foo Fighters concerts with Hawkins taking on lead vocals for select tracks, including ‘Somebody To Love’ by his favourite band Queen.

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Jordan dies aged 66© Getty


Punk icon Jordan – real name Pamela Rooke – died aged 66 on Sunday 3rd April 2022 following a short battle with cholangiocarcinoma (bile duct cancer). In a statement, her family said she “died peacefully a stone’s throw away from the sea in her hometown of Seaford, East Sussex in the company of her loving family. Jordan (Pamela Rooke) has left her mark on this planet, whether it be as ‘The Queen of Punk’, or for her veterinary work and countless prize winning cats.” Rooke was a model known for her work with Vivienne Westwood and the Sex boutique in the Kings Road area of London in the mid-1970s, and alongside Johnny Rotten, Soo Catwoman and Siouxsie Sioux, she was credited with creating the W10 London punk look. She was briefly manager of Adam and the Ants, and recorded the song ‘Lou’ with them as a guest vocalist during a Radio 1 session for John Peel. She is portrayed by Game of Thrones actress Maisie Williams in Danny Boyle’s six-part Sex Pistols TV series, Pistol.

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Chris Bailey dies© Getty

Chris Bailey

Chris Bailey, lead singer, co-founder and songwriter of influential Australian punk band The Saints, died on Saturday 9th April 2022. The Saints wrote: “It is with great pain in our hearts that we have to inform you about the passing of Chris Bailey, singer and songwriter of The Saints, on April the 9th 2022. Chris lived a life of poetry and music and stranded on a Saturday night.” Bailey’s former band mate Ed Kuepper tweeted: “Chris and I met when we were about 14 during detention at Oxley High School and became close friends which later developed into what I always thought was an extremely strong artistic partnership. I couldn’t have hoped for a better singer. My deepest condolences to his wife Elisabet, his sisters Margaret, Carol and Maureen and the rest of his family and loved ones.”

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Sylvia Lancaster dead© Alamy

Sylvia Lancaster

Sylvia Lancaster, the campaigning mother of murdered alternative music fan Sophie Lancaster, died in hospital on Tuesday 12th April 2022. 20-year-old Sophie Lancaster was brutally attacked simply because of her goth appearance by a group of youths in Bacup, Lancashire in August 2007 and she died 13 days later. Her boyfriend Robert Maltby was also injured in the attack. Following Sophie’s murder, Sylvia Lancaster campaigned tirelessly and launched the Sophie Lancaster Foundation with the aim to stamp out prejudice, hatred and intolerance everywhere. Sylvia received an OBE in 2014 for her campaign work. The second stage at Bloodstock Festival at Catton Park in Derbyshire has been named in Sophie Lancaster’s memory since 2009. Bloodstock said in a statement: “We are all utterly devastated at Bloodstock HQ to learn of the passing of Sylvia Lancaster. The Sophie Lancaster Foundation has been a core part of the festival since 2009 and always will be. Sylvia was an inspiration to so many of us.”

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Art Rupe dead© Getty

Art Rupe

Art Rupe, the founder of influential Los Angeles record label Specialty Records, died on Friday 15th April 2022 aged 104. Rupe founded Specialty Records shortly after World War II in 1945, and, serving as its executive and one of its producers, he helped build the careers of an array of rhythm and blues, gospel, and early rock and roll artists. Little Richard released many of his pioneering anthems on Specialty including ‘Tutti Frutti’ and ‘Long Tall Sally’, and other notable acts on the imprint’s roster included Sam Cooke, Guitar Slim and Lester Williams. Rupe was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2007, and four years later he was awarded the Ahmet Ertegun Award by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Rock Hall said Rupe’s “fastidious work ethic and uncanny musical intuition shaped the evolution of rock.”

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Re Styles dead© Getty

Re Styles

The Tubes’ former co-vocalist Re Styles died aged 72 on Sunday 17th April 2022. Born Shirley Marie Macleod in Middelburg, Netherlands in March 1950, Styles appeared in Alejandro Jodorowsky’s movie The Holy Mountain and Sun Ra’s Space Is the Place and posed for Playboy and Penthouse magazines in the early 1970s. In 1975, she was credited with clothing design and dance co-ordination for San Francisco rockers The Tubes before joining as a co-vocalist, performing on signature songs including ‘Don’t Touch Me There’ and ‘Prime Time’. Alongside her band mates in The Tubes, Styles appeared in the musical fantasy film Xanadu starring Olivia Newton-John, Michael Beck and Gene Kelly in his final film role. Fatigued by heavy drinking, Styles left The Tubes in 1979 and became a landscape gardener, interior designer, party planner and florist. The Tubes remained in contact with her over the decades.

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Randy Rand dead© Getty

Randy Rand

Randy Rand, the bassist and co-founding member of 80s glam metal band Autograph, died in late April 2022. In a heartfelt statement issued to their Facebook page, Autograph said they were “beyond devastated” by Rand’s “unexpected” passing but they “find some comfort and solace knowing the last couple of years have been some of his happiest as an artist and as a performer.” Randy Rand co-founded Autograph in 1983 and their big break came shortly afterwards when they supported Van Halen on 48 dates of their 1984 tour despite still being unsigned. Played heavily on MTV, Autograph scored their only US chart hit in early 1985 with ‘Turn Up the Radio’, while their debut album ‘Sign In Please’ has sold more than 500,000 copies Stateside. Rand released four studio albums with Autograph until they went their separate ways in 1989. Singer Steve Plunkett released the 2003 album ‘Buzz’ under the band’s moniker with a new line-up. Rand rejoined a new incarnation of Autograph in 2013 featuring Brazilian singer Simon Daniels and released two further albums with them – 2016’s ‘Louder’ and 2017’s ‘Get Off Your Ass’.

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Ric Parnell Dies© Alamy

Ric Parnell second from the right

Ric Parnell

Ric Parnell, best known for playing doomed drummer Mick Shrimpton in This Is Spinal Tap, died on 1st May 2022 aged 70. Harry Shearer, aka Spinal Tap’s Derek Smalls, broke the news of Parnell’s passing, writing: “Ric Parnell, our drummer in This is Spinal Tap, passed away today. No one ever rocked harder.” Ric Parnell was a member of Atomic Rooster in the early 70s and performed on two studio albums – ‘Made in England’ (1972) and ‘Nice ‘n’ Greasy’ (1973). He worked with an array of artists and drummed on Toni Basil’s ubiquitous one-hit wonder ‘Mickey’ before his big break in Rob Reiner’s seminal rock mockumentary This Is Spinal Tap. Shrimpton was a former house drummer for the Eurovision Song Contest and was the latest drummer to join Spinal Tap after a succession of drummers died in strange circumstances. Sadly for Shrimpton, he perished when he spontaneously combusted on stage in Japan in 1982.

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Howie Pyro dies© Getty

Howie Pyro

Howie Pyro, the bassist and co-founding member of New York glam punk band D Generation, died on Wednesday 4th May 2022 aged 61. Pyro, real name Howard Kursten, died from Covid-19-related pneumonia after suffering from liver disease. Pyro’s D Generation band mate Jessie Malin wrote: “My best friend and brother has passed away. He fought real hard right till the end. He changed my life and so many others in ways I can’t even begin to say. We made our world together.” Pyro also performed bass with Danzig on two of their studio albums in the early noughties, and with the late-great Joey Ramone on the festive album ‘Christmas Spirit… In My House.’

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Trevor Strnad dies© Getty

Trevor Strnad

The Black Dahlia Murder’s frontman and co-founding member Trevor Strnad died aged 41 in May 2022. The Michigan melodic death metal band said in a statement on 11th May: “It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of Trevor Scott Strnad. Beloved son, brother, and Shepard of good times, he was loved by all that met him. A walking encyclopaedia of all things music. He was a hugger, a writer, and truly one of the world’s greatest entertainers. His lyrics provided the world with stories and spells and horror and whimsy. It was his life to be your show.” Alongside the statement, The Black Dahlia Murder shared the phone number of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Alongside guitarist Brian Eschbach, Strnad remained a constant member of The Black Dahlia Murder from their formation in 2001 until his death, and he appeared on all nine of their studio albums.

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Ricky Gardiner dies© Getty

Ricky Gardiner (centre) with Iggy Pop and David Bowie in 1977

Ricky Gardiner

Scottish guitarist Ricky Gardiner, best known for his work with David Bowie and Iggy Pop, died on 13th May 2022 aged 73. Producer Tony Visconti wrote: “Another guitar genius and personal friend passed into the next world last night. Ricky Gardiner, who joined David Bowie for the albums Low and Iggy Pop’s The Idiot, ended a long battle with Parkinson’s.” Iggy Pop also paid tribute, saying: “Dearest Ricky, lovely, lovely man, shirtless in your coveralls, nicest guy who ever played guitar. Thanks for the memories and the songs, rest eternal in peace.” Gardiner performed lead guitar on the first side of David Bowie’s 1977 album ‘Low’, including the songs ‘Always Crashing in the Same Car’, ‘Be My Wife’ and ‘Sound and Vision.’ He also played on Iggy Pop’s Bowie-produced ‘Lust for Life’ album in 1977 and co-wrote the seminal song ‘The Passenger.’

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Vangelis dies aged 79© Getty

Vangelis in 1991


Best known for his iconic theme music for Chariots of Fire and Blade Runner, legendary Greek composer Vangelis died on 17th May 2022 aged 79. Born Evángelos Odysséas Papathanassíou, he passed away in Paris, France due to heart failure. Chariots of Fire producer Lord Putnam said: “I think Vangelis created a new landscape, a new musical landscape, that many other composers have taken advantage of.” He scooped an Oscar for Chariots of Fire, and his music in 1982’s Blade Runner is seen as so integral to the movie that some regard it as a character alongside Harrison Ford’s Rick Deckard and Sean Young’s Rachael. Vangelis also performed with Greek progressive rock outfit Aphrodite’s Child and he recorded a number of collaborative albums with former Yes singer Jon Anderson in the 1980s and 1990s.

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Cathal Coughlan dies aged 61© Getty

Cathal Coughlan

Cathal Coughlan, the frontman with Irish indie bands Microdisney and Fatima Mansions, died aged 61 on 18th May 2022. A statement from his family five days after his death said “he slipped away peacefully in hospital after a long illness.” John Peel favourites Microdisney enjoyed a cult following and released six studio albums before their split in July 1988, just days after they supported David Bowie. Cathal Coughlan then fronted the harder edged band The Fatima Mansions who supported U2 on their Zoo TV Tour.

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Alan White dies aged 72© Press

Alan White

Yes drummer Alan White died at the age of 72 on 26th May 2022 following a short illness. White passed away at his Seattle area home, no cause of death has been revealed. Alan White replaced original drummer Bill Bruford in Yes in 1972, and following the death of Chris Squire in 2015, he became the longest-serving remaining member of the band. White’s family said: “Alan White, our beloved husband, dad, and grandpa, passed away at the age of 72 at his Seattle-area home on May 26, 2022, after a brief illness. Throughout his life and six-decade career, Alan was many things to many people: a certified rock star to fans around the world; band mate to a select few, and gentleman and friend to all who met him.”

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Andy Fletcher dies aged 60© Getty

Andy Fletcher

Depeche Mode keyboardist and founding member Andy ‘Fletch’ Fletcher died at the age of 60 on 26th May 2022. His band mates Dave Gahan and Martin Gore issued a statement, reading: “We are shocked and filled with overwhelming sadness with the untimely passing of our dear friend, family member and bandmate Andy ‘Fletch’ Fletcher. Fletch had a true heart of gold and was always there when you needed support, a lively conversation, a good laugh, or a cold pint. Our hearts are with his family, and we ask that you keep them in your thoughts and respect their privacy in this difficult time.” With Depeche Mode, Fletch released 14 studio albums and sold over 100 million records worldwide, making them one of the most successful bands of all time. Fletch won five Grammy Awards with Depeche Mode, and in 2020 they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

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Ronnie Hawkins dies aged 87© Getty

Ronnie Hawkins

Influential rockabilly artist Ronnie Hawkins died on Sunday 29th May 2022 following an unspecified long illness. Born in Arkansas in 1935, Hawkins, also known as The Hawk or Rompin’ Ronnie, first found success in Ontario and he lived in Canada for more than six decades. He enjoyed a distinguished solo career, however he was also a talent scout and mentor of the musicians he recruited for his band. Most notably, five members of his backing band The Hawks went on to perform with Bob Dylan before forming their own seminal outfit, The Band. Robbie Robertson from The Band called Hawkins “the godfather” and “the one who made this all happen” in an Instagram tribute. Hawkins featured prominently in Martin Scorsese’s concert film ‘The Last Waltz’ in 1976 about The Band’s farewell show, and he received a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame in Toronto in 2002.

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Steve Broughton dies aged 72© Getty

Steve Broughton (right) with brother Edgar in 1971

Steve Broughton

Edgar Broughton Band drummer and multi-instrumentalist Steve Broughton died on Sunday 29th May 2022 aged 72. A statement from his brother Edgar Broughton read: “It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of my beloved brother, comrade and fellow traveller Steve Broughton, on Sunday 29th May. R.I.P.” No cause of death has been revealed. Alongside Edgar and bassist Arthur Grant, Steve Broughton was a permanent member of the Edgar Broughton Band throughout their four spells of existence, and he contributed to all eight of their studio albums. He also played drums on Mike Oldfield’s seminal 1973 album ‘Tubular Bells.’

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Ken Kelly dies aged 76© Getty

Ken Kelly

American fantasy artist Ken Kelly, who created seminal album covers for KISS and Rainbow, died aged 76 on 3rd June 2022. Record sleeves Kelly created include KISS’s ‘Destroyer’ and ‘Love Gun’, Rainbow’s ‘Rising’, Ace Frehley’s ‘Space Invader’ and multiple sleeves for Manowar (including the ‘Destroyer’ parodying ‘Fighting the World’). Rainbow leader Ritchie Blackmore said about Kelly: “He was a very nice man. Very easy to work with. I gave him a simple idea, which he turned into a magical picture (Rainbow’s ‘Rising’). He shall be greatly missed.” KISS’s Paul Stanley tweeted: “A moment to remember the great Ken Kelly. His fantasy art captured the larger than life image of KISS perfectly. Rest In Peace.”

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Alec John Such dies aged 70© Getty

Alec John Such

Alec John Such, Bon Jovi’s original bassist, died in June 2022 aged 70. Bon Jovi said: “We are heartbroken to hear the news of the passing of our dear friend Alec John Such. He was an original. As a founding member of Bon Jovi, Alec was integral to the formation of the band. To be honest, we found our way to each other thru him — He was a childhood friend of Tico (Torres) and brought Richie (Sambora) to see us perform. Alec was always wild and full of life. Today these special memories bring a smile to my face and a tear to my eye. We will miss him dearly.” Timeless Bon Jovi anthems that Such played on include ‘You Give Love a Bad Name’, ‘Livin’ on a Prayer’, ‘Bad Medicine’, ‘Keep the Faith’ and ‘I’ll Be There for You.’ Such was ousted from Bon Jovi in 1994 prior to the recording of their sixth studio album ‘These Days’. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Bon Jovi in April 2018 and he attended the ceremony in Cleveland, Ohio.

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Jim Seals dies aged 80© Getty

Jim Seals

Jim Seals from soft rock duo Seals and Crofts died on Monday 6th June 2022 aged 80. Seals passed away at his Nashville home on Monday 6th June after suffering a “chronic ongoing illness”, his wife Ruby Jean Seals confirmed. Seals had previously suffered a stroke in 2017. Musician and friend John Ford Coley hailed Seals as “a bona fide, dyed in the wool musical genius and a very deep and contemplative man” in a statement on Facebook. Alongside his fellow Texas native Darrell George ‘Dash’ Crofts, Jim Seals formed the eponymous duo Seals and Crofts in 1969 and they went on to secure a string of hit singles between 1972 and 1976 including ‘Diamond Girl’, ‘We May Never Pass This Way (Again)’, ‘Get Closer’ and their signature tune ‘Summer Breeze.’ ‘Summer Breeze’ sold over a million copies in the US and peaked at Number 6 on the Billboard Top 100. Released two years after Seals and Crofts’ version, the Isley Brothers cover of ‘Summer Breeze’ was a hit in the UK and sold over 200,000 copies.

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Brett Tuggle dies aged 70© Getty

Brett Tuggle

Brett Tuggle, who played keyboards with Fleetwood Mac and David Lee Roth, died on 19th June 2022 following a battle with cancer. He was 70. Tuggle’s son, Matt, said: “He was loved by his family so much. His family was with him throughout the entire time of his illness. He was a lovely father. He gave me music in my life.” Tuggle got his first big break as keyboardist for John Kay & Steppenwolf in 1980 before going on to play with Rick Springfield and David Lee Roth. He co-wrote numerous songs with Roth including the Top 10 hit ‘Just Like Paradise’. Having worked on Mick Fleetwood’s side project the Zoo, in 1997 Tuggle became a touring member of Fleetwood Mac and played keyboards with the legendary band for 21 years. Tuggle also played with Jimmy Page, David Coverdale, Chris Isaak, Stevie Nicks, Steven Tyler and Lindsey Buckingham.

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Manny Charlton dies aged 80© Getty

Manny Charlton

Founding Nazareth guitarist Manny Charlton died at the age of 80 on Tuesday 5th July at his home in Texas. Bassist Pete Agnew says the “death was sudden and not illness related.” Born in Andalusia in southern Spain in 1941, Charlton founded Nazareth in Dunfermline in 1968 alongside Agnew, vocalist Dan McCafferty and drummer Darrell Sweet. He served as Nazareth’s lead guitarist until 1990 and appeared on all 17 of their studio albums from 1971’s ‘Nazareth’ through to 1989’s ‘Snakes N’ Ladders.’ At the request of Nazareth fan Axl Rose, Manny Charlton travelled to Los Angeles in 1986 to work with a fledgling band called Guns N’ Roses.He recorded 25 songs with the band at Sound City including embryonic versions of ‘Paradise City’, ‘Rocket Queen’, ‘Welcome to the jungle’ and ‘Nightrain’, however Charlton returned to the UK to his day job with Nazareth. Mike Clink was eventually hired to produce ‘Appetite for Destruction’, however Charlton’s 25 recordings appeared on the deluxe 2018 reissue of the record as bonus tracks. Since shortly before the turn of the millennium, Charlton enjoyed a solo career.

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Michael James Jackson dies© KISS / Facebook

Michael James Jackson

KISS producer Michael James Jackson died in July 2022. Jackson co-produced ‘Creatures of the Night’ (1982) and ‘Lick It Up’ (1983) with Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons and he also worked on 1982 compilation album ‘Killers’ and 1984’s ‘Animalize.’ In a statement, KISS said: “Michael James Jackson has passed away from the complications of COVID related pneumonia. He was the driving force behind ‘Killers’, ‘Creatures Of The Night’, ‘Lick It Up’ and ‘Animalize’. His passion and belief in the band was instrumental in our new found success in the 80’s. He loved our fans and was a close member of the KISS family until the end. We mourn his loss and celebrate his life.” Paul Stanley wrote: “Michael James Jackson-My dearest and best friend for 40 years has died. His kindness and steadfast commitment to me and our friendship was a rock that supported me through the toughest times. He pushed me to start painting and reveled unselfishly in all my successes. Heartbroken.”

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Paul Ryder dies aged 58© Getty

Paul Ryder

Happy Mondays co-founder and bass player Paul Ryder died aged 58 on 15th July 2022. A cause of death hasn’t been revealed. Happy Mondays wrote: “The Ryder family and Happy Mondays band members are deeply saddened and shocked to say that Paul Ryder passed away this morning. A true pioneer and legend. He will be forever missed. Long live his funk.” Born on 24th April 1964 in Salford, Paul Ryder co-founded Happy Mondays in the early 80s alongside his older brother Shaun (vocals), Gary Whelan (drums), Paul Davis (keyboard), and Mark Day (guitar). Bez joined shortly afterwards. He remained a constant member of Happy Mondays until his death today and appeared on all five of their studio albums.

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Col Harkness dies aged 62© Getty

Col Harkness

Col Harkness, singer and guitarist with 80s NWOBHM band Spider, died aged 62 in July 2022. Harkness’ former Spider band mates Dave ‘Sniffa’ Bryce, Brian Burrows and Rob E. Burrows confirmed the sad news via a joint statement on their Facebook page, reading: “It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Spider band member Col Harkness. Col had been in poor health in recent months, in and out of hospital – and sadly, he lost the battle. Please remember Col with love and affection – maybe dig out those albums and singles and listen to him over the weekend. PLAY IT LOUD!” Colin Harkness co-founded Spider in Wallasey, Wirral in 1976 and the band released three studio albums – ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Gypsies’ (1982), ‘Rough Justice’ (1984) and ‘Raise the Banner (For Rock ‘n’ Roll)’ (1986) before their split in 1986. Prolific live performers, they played with Gillan, Uriah Heep and Slade to name but a few.

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Nicky Moore dies aged 75© Getty

Nicky Moore

Nicky Moore (front), former lead singer with Samson, died aged 75. He had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Recruited to replace Bruce Dickinson, who left Samson to join Iron Maiden in 1981, Moore had started his rock career by co-founding Hackensack in 1969. After their demise, he joined Tiger in 1974, alongside revered and influential guitarist ‘Big’ Jim Sullivan. After recording two studio albums with them, Samson disbanded in the mid 80s. Moore continued to perform with the likes of former Gillan guitarist John McCoy, Manny Charlton, and Uli Jon Roth in Electric Sun. A reunion with Samson took place in 2000. Moore spent his final years in a nursing home. A statment on his official Facebook page said: “A man that lived a thousand lifetimes in just one has decided he needed a rest. ”

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Steve Grimmett dies aged 62

Steve Grimmett

Steve Grimmett, the powerhouse vocalist with British NWOBHM band Grim Reaper, died on Monday 15th August 2022 aged 62. A statement from his wife, Millie, read: “This is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to write but it’s with a heavy & shattered heart to say that my beloved Steve died suddenly & unexpectedly on Monday 15th August. Wait for me my love. Until we are together again. Your Millie xxx” Steve Grimmett was born in Swindon in 1959 and he joined new wave of British heavy metal band Grim Reaper in 1982 having previously been a member of the short-lived group Medusa. As vocalist and co-songwriter, Grimmett released three studio albums with Grim Reaper in the 1980s – ‘See You In Hell’, ‘Fear No Evil’ and ‘Rock You to Hell’ – that earned the band a loyal fanbase on both sides of the Atlantic. Grimmett went on to front thrash metallers Onslaught, and he released four studio albums with Lionsheart. In 2006, he revived Grim Reaper as Steve Grimmett’s Grim Reaper due to legal issues, and they released the albums ‘Walking in the Shadows’ and ‘At the Gates’. In January 2017, Grimmett was hospitalized in Ecuador due to an aggressive infection on his right leg, and it was amputated below the knee. Just six months later, he was performing on stage again.

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Jerry Allison dies aged 82© Getty

Jerry Allison

Jerry Allison, drummer with Buddy Holly’s band The Crickets, died on Monday 22nd August 2022 aged 82. Allison (pictured on the left) joined The Crickets in 1958 and remained a member of the band until their split in 2016 – the band remained active for 57 years after Buddy Holly’s death. He co-penned some of Buddy Holly’s biggest hits, including ‘That’ll Be The Day’ and ‘Peggy Sue’, and he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012 as a member of The Crickets. A statement on Buddy Holly’s Facebook page praised Jerry ‘JI’ Allison as “a musician ahead of his time, and undoubtedly his energy, ideas and exceptional skill contributed to both The Crickets, and rock n’ roll itself, becoming such a success.” It added: “Buddy is often heralded as the original singer-songwriter, but JI, too, wrote and inspired so many of the songs that would go on to be eternal classics.”

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David Andersson© Getty

David Andersson

David Andersson, guitarist with Swedish melodic metallers Soilwork, died on Wednesday 14th September aged 47. Soilwork wrote in a statement on social media: “We are deeply saddened today, as we bring the terrible news of David Andersson’s passing. He was one of a kind and a brilliant man in so many ways. He was our guitarist for more than 10 years and had a big impact on Soilwork’s musical journey forward. Sadly alcohol and mental illness took you away from us. We will miss him dearly and will continue to carry the musical legacy that he was a part of. Our deepest condolences goes out to his family. Forever grateful for the time we spent with you and all the good laughs.”

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John Hartman© Getty

John Hartman

John Hartman, founder and original drummer for The Doobie Brothers died in late September aged 72. In a social media statement on 22nd September, the band paid tribute to “a wild spirit, great drummer and showman”. Hartman founded the band in 1970, and went on to play on all their biggest albums, including on singles ‘China Grove’ and ‘Long Train Runnin”. The exact date and cause of Hartman’s death were not announced.

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Jerry Lee Lewis© Getty

Jerry Lee Lewis

Notorious rock n’ roll trailblazer Jerry Lee Lewis died aged on Friday 28th October 2022 at his home Desoto County, Mississippi with his seventh wife Judith by his side. A rock and roll and rockabilly music pioneer, Lewis – nicknamed The Killer – shot to fame in the late 50s with a slew of blockbuster hits including ‘Great Balls of Fire’, ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On’, ‘Breathless’, and ‘High School Confidential.’ Despite his irrefutable musical genius and prowess as a live performer, Lewis was embroiled in controversy when, aged 22, he married his 13-year-old cousin Myra Gale Brown. Breaking the news of Lewis’ passing, his agent called him “perhaps the last true, great icon of the birth of rock’n’roll”.

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D.H. Peligro dies aged 63© Getty

D.H. Peligro

D. H. Peligro, The Dead Kennedys’ drummer who was also briefly a member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, died aged 63 on Friday 28th October 2022. Breaking the news of his passing, Dead Kennedys wrote: “D.H. Peligro (Darren Henley) passed away in his Los Angeles home yesterday, October 28th. Police on the scene stated that he died from trauma to the head caused by an accidental fall. Arrangements are pending and will be announced in the coming days. We ask that you respect the family’s privacy during this difficult time. Thank you for your thoughts and words of comfort.” Peligro joined The Dead Kennedys in 1981 and had three stints with the band until his death. He replaced Jack Irons in Red Hot Chili Peppers in 1988 and he co-wrote three songs 1989′ ‘Mother’s Milk’, however he was fired before the band recorded the album.

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Dan McCafferty dies aged 76© Getty

Dan McCafferty

Nazareth’s co-founder and former frontman Dan McCafferty died on 8th November 2022 aged 76. No cause of death has been revealed, however McCafferty had been battling C.O.P.D. (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) for a number of years and forced him to retire in 2013. McCafferty was one of the founding members of Nazareth in Dunfermline in 1968. He appeared on all of Nazareth’s albums up to 2014 and toured with them for 45 years. Nazareth embarked on a rich run of form in the 70s, with singles such as ‘Broken Down Angel’, ‘Bad Bad Boy’, and their cover of Joni Mitchell’s ‘This Flight Tonight’ all providing big hits. Paying tribute to his band mate, Pete Agnew said: “I have lost my best friend and the world has lost one of the greatest singers who ever lived.”

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Nik Turner dies aged 82© Getty

Nik Turner

Hawkwind co-founder, saxophonist and multi-instrumentalist Nik Turner died on Thursday 10th November. He was 82 years old. Hawkwind said in a statement: “We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of Nik Turner—The Mighty Thunder Rider, who passed away peacefully at home on Thursday evening. He has moved onto the next phase of his cosmic journey, guided by the love of his family, friends, and fans.” Turner was famed for his experimental free jazz stylisations and oft flamboyant stage presence and costumes.

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Keith Levene dies aged 65© Getty

Keith Levene

Influential Public Image Ltd. guitarist Keith Levene, who also co-founded The Clash in 1976, died on 11th November 2022. He was 65 years old. Author Adam Hammond confirmed the punk pioneer’s passing, writing: “It is with great sadness I report that my close friend and legendary Public Image Limited guitarist Keith Levene passed away on Friday 11th November. There is no doubt that Keith was one of the most innovative, audacious and influential guitarists of all time. Keith sought to create a new paradigm in music and with willing collaborators John Lydon and Jah Wobble succeeded in doing just that. His guitar work over the nine minutes of ‘Theme’, the first track on the first PiL album, defined what alternative music should be.”

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Wilko Johnson dies aged 75© Getty

Wilko Johnson

Guitarist, songwriter and co-founder of the legendary Dr. Feelgood, Wilko Johnson passed away aged 75 on 21st November 2022. The news was shared by his team on social media on 23rd November 2022. Johnson’s distinctive choppy fingerstyle on guitar, and frenetic on-stage persona helped propel Dr. Feelgood to their place as scruffy ringleaders of the 70’s pub rock scene. After leaving Feelgood during the recording of their 4th album, Johnson eventually embarked on a solo career, touring regularly. He landed a surprise role in the first two series of Game of Thrones in 2011 as mute executioner Ser Ilyn Payne. In 2013 he was diagnosed with terminal cancer, and embarked on a farewell tour, as well as recording hit “final” album ‘Going Back Home’ with Roger Daltrey. Radical surgery led to him beating cancer and going on to experience a late renaissance.

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Christine McVie dies aged 79© Alamy

Christine McVie

Fleetwood Mac’s co-lead vocalist, songwriter and keyboardist Christine McVie died aged 79 on 30th November 2022. The band said in a statement: ‘On behalf of Christine McVie’s family, it is with a heavy heart we are informing you of Christine’s death. She passed away peacefully at hospital this morning, Wednesday, November 30th 2022, following a short illness. She was in the company of her family. We kindly ask that you respect the family’s privacy at this extremely painful time and we would like everyone to keep Christine in their hearts and remember the life of an incredible human being, and revered musician who was loved universally. RIP Christine McVie.” The Lancashire born musician co-wrote, wrote and performed on some of Fleetwood Mac’s biggest songs including ‘Don’t Stop’, ‘Everywhere’, ‘Little Lies’ and the stunningly beautiful ‘Songbird.’

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Jet Black dies aged 84© Getty

Jet Black

The Stranglers’ drummer and founding member Jet Black died on 8th December 2022 aged 84. Confirming the sad news of Jet Black’s passing, The Stranglers wrote: “It is with heavy hearts we announce the passing of our dear friend, colleague and band elder statesman Jet Black. Jet died peacefully at home surrounded by his family.” Born Brian John Duffy on 26th August 1938 in Ilford, Essex, Jet Black was a successful businessman before he became a full time musician with The Stranglers in 1974. He was a constant member of The Stranglers over the next 44 years and he appeared on the band’s first 17 studio albums from 1977’s ‘Rattus Norvegicus’ through to 2012’s ‘Giants.’ Black officially retired from The Stranglers in 2018 due to ill health.

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Kim Simmonds dies aged 75© Alamy

Kim Simmonds

Welsh rock singer and musician Kim Simmonds, who was the sole constant member of influential British blues rock outfit Savoy Brown, died on 13th December 2022 aged 75. Simmonds had been battling a rare form of signet cell colon cancer. “Kim Simmonds passed away peacefully in the evening of December 13th — may he rest in peace,” Savoy Brown wrote on social media. “Please note one of Kim’s last requests was to thank the fans of Savoy Brown. Your support was and shall always be immensely appreciated.” Simmonds led Savoy Brown since its inception when he was a teenager in 1965, and the band enjoyed considerable chart success in North America in the late 60s and early 70s.

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Dino Danelli dies aged 78© Alamy

Dino Danelli

Dino Danelli, the drummer and original member of The Young Rascals and Rascals, died on 15th December 2022 aged 78. Breaking the news of his passing, The Rascals wrote: Our beloved Dino passed away today. I will say more in the near future about his incredible talent and share experiences from his life he relayed to me, as well as ones we spent as friends and collaborators. I hope you will all continue to appreciate his talent and send him your love. Thank you for supporting his various endeavors throughout his career. You all made it possible for him to live his dream, which was to be a musician and artist.” The Young Rascals, who later changed their name to The Rascals, scored a number of chart-topping hits in America in the late 60s including ‘Good Lovin’, ‘Groovin’ (which also charted at no.8 in the UK) and ‘People Got to Be Free’. As a member of The Rascals, Dino Danelli was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

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Terry Hall dies aged 63© Alamy

Terry Hall

Terry Hall, lead singer with legendary Coventry ska band The Specials, died on 19th December 2022 aged 63 following a short illness. Breaking the news of Hall’s death, The Specials wrote: “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing, following a brief illness, of Terry, our beautiful friend, brother and one of the most brilliant singers, songwriters and lyricists this country has ever produced. Terry was a wonderful husband and father and one of the kindest, funniest, and most genuine of souls. His music and his performances encapsulated the very essence of life… the joy, the pain, the humour, the fight for justice, but mostly the love. He will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him and leaves behind the gift of his remarkable music and profound humanity. Terry often left the stage at the end of The Specials’ life-affirming shows with three words… “Love Love Love”.

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Martin Duffy dies aged 55© Getty

Martin Duffy

Primal Scream keyboardist Martin Duffy died aged 55 in December 2022. Duffy also played with The Charlatans following Rob Collins’ death in 1996 and he performed Knebworth with the band supporting Oasis that summer. He went on to contribute to their chart-topping fifth album ‘Tellin’ Stories.’ Charlatans frontman Tim Burgess has broken the news of Duffy’s passing, writing: “Another tragic loss of a beautiful soul. Martin Duffy stepped in to save The Charlatans when we lost Rob – he played with us at Knebworth and was a true friend. He toured with me in my solo band too – he was a pleasure to spend time with. Safe travels Duffy.” Born in Birmingham in 1967, Duffy joined influential indie band Felt in 1985 and performed on seven albums before their split four years later. Whilst still a member of Felt, Duffy played on Primal Scream’s first two albums ‘Sonic Flower Groove’ (1987) and ‘Primal Scream’ (1989) before he joined the band permanently following Felt’s demise.

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Vivienne Westwood dies aged 81© Alamy

Vivienne Westwood

Iconic fashion designer Dame Vivienne Westwood, who masterminded the aesthetic of the punk rock movement in the late 70s, died aged 81 on 29th December 2022. Westwood ran the Chelsea boutique SEX with her then husband Malcolm McLaren from 1974 to 1976 and she created looks for The Sex Pistols, Siouxsie Sioux, Adam and the Ants and countless more musicians.. Westwood went on to become the “undisputed Queen of British fashion.” A statement confirming Westwood’s death read: “Vivienne Westwood died today, peacefully and surrounded by her family, in Clapham, South London. Vivienne continued to do the things she loved, up until the last moment, designing, working on her art, writing her book, and changing the world for the better. She led an amazing life. Her innovation and impact over the last 60 years has been immense and will continue into the future… The world needs people like Vivienne to make a change for the better.”

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