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FATS DOMINO: ROCK AND ROLL LEGEND DIES AGED 89

By Posted on 1 No tags 19

Fats Domino, one of the most influential rock and roll performers of the 1950s and 60s, has died aged 89.

Antoine “Fats” Domino, a titan of early rock ‘n’ roll whose piano-based hits — such as “Ain’t That a Shame,” “Blueberry Hill” and “Blue Monday” — influenced artists including Paul McCartney and Randy Newman, died Tuesday, an official said. Domino passed away due to natural causes, according to Mark Bone, chief investigator with the Jefferson Parish Medical Examiner’s office in Louisiana. He was 89.

With producer and arranger Dave Bartholomew, Domino cut a string of songs in the 1950s and early ’60s that helped establish his hometown of New Orleans as a rock ‘n’ roll hotbed and made him one of the music’s leading figures. The pair recorded “The Fat Man” in late 1949, a song considered one of the first rock ‘n’ roll records — a group that includes Wynonie Harris’ version of “Good Rockin’ Tonight” (1947) and Jackie Brenston and Ike Turner’s “Rocket 88” (1951) — and followed it up with more than 30 Top 40 hits, including 23 gold singles.

The New Orleans singer sold more than 65 million records, outselling every 1950s rock and roll act except Elvis Presley.His million-selling debut single, The Fat Man, is credited by some as the first ever rock and roll record.

An official from New Orleans coroner’s office confirmed the death, which was earlier announced by Domino’s daughter to a local television station.

Fats Domino – whose real name was Antoine Domino Jr – was one of the first rhythm and blues artists to gain popularity with a white audience and his music was most prolific in the 1950s.

Domino had a string of number ones and more than 30 top 40 hits. His music is also credited as a key influence on artists during the 1960s and 70s.

Elvis Presley referred to Fats Domino as “the real king of rock n roll” and Paul McCartney reportedly wrote the Beatles song Lady Madonna in emulation of his style.

 

In 1986 he was among the first inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but by his later life Domino would no longer leave his Louisiana hometown – not even to accept the award. New Orleans-born musician and actor Harry Connick Jr is among those who have paid tribute to Domino on Twitter, saying he had “helped pave the way for New Orleans piano players”.

Fats Domino in a German advertisement featuring “Lady Madonna” and his 1968 album

Antoine “Fats” Domino Jr was born in New Orleans on 26 Feb 1928, the son of a violinist. His parents were of Creole origin, and French Creole was spoken in the family. He was musically inclined from an early age and learned piano from his brother in law, the jazz banjo player, Harrison Verrett. He was given his nickname by bandleader Bill Diamond for whom he was playing piano in honky-tonks as a teenager. He said the youngster’s technique reminded him of two other great piano players, Fats Waller and Fats Pichon. Domino left school at the age of 14 to work in a bedspring factory by day, and play in bars by night. He was soon accompanying such New Orleans luminaries as Professor Longhair and Amos Milburn.In the mid-1940s, he joined trumpeter Dave Bartholomew’s band, and the two co-wrote Domino’s first hit The Fat Man. Suddenly, the New Orleans sound became popular nationwide.

Some of his belongings were replaced, including his gold records and a National Medal of Arts he’d been awarded in 1998 (from President Bill Clinton). His white Steinway was refurbished by the Louisiana Music Foundation, which put it on display in the French Quarter in 2013.
Domino remained a steadfast part of the New Orleans scene. He played a sold-out show at Tipitina’s nightclub in 2007 and appeared in an episode of the TV show “Treme” in 2012.

Domino was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.

 

MARY MCCARTNEY LAUNCHES PHOTO-PRINT SCARVES WITH MATCHESFASHION

By Posted on 0 25

Mary McCartney has created a fashion capsule for the first time, the first in an ongoing series of product-driven projects. Mary is applying her photography art to new mediums through the launch of a scarf collection with MatchesFashion. The six-piece line will include archival photographs and specially made portraits, reprinted onto silk and woven wool.

Mary — who made a name for herself as a photographer in the mid-‘90s — was inspired by exhibition merchandise. “I spent more time in the gift shop at the V&A than I do in the museum because the collaborations are so good,” McCartney tells BoF. The project allows McCartney to “dip [her] toe” into other canvases for her work. Although she is keen to expand her product-driven collaborations, she is currently unsure of what those products might be. “I don’t see myself competing with my sister in the fashion sphere,” she says, referring to Stella McCartney (the sisters are daughters of musician Paul McCartney and photographer Linda McCartney.) “We’re always talking about [collaborating] and it will happen at some point, but it’s more about when.”

Today, Mary´s body of work is both portraits and social reportage. The line for MatchesFashion includes graphic images that show legs cast in fishnet tights and ample cleavage with rhinestone cowboy boot stickers on each breast, as well as two new “Paris Nude” portraits of comedienne Phyllis Wang.

Mary shoots on a Leica that was given to her by her late mother and a 35mm Ricoh camera, small enough to fit in a bag and not intimidate subjects. “There’s a way of [capturing private moments], which my mum taught me,” she says. “You don’t go around the room with a camera in people’s face.”

“Collaborating with a photographer was a natural thing for us,” Natalie Kingham, buying director at MatchesFashion, tells BoF. The project marks the first time the e-retailer has partnered with a photographer on a collection. “[What] we look for when buying [items in this category] is something that when tied as a scarf still looks beautiful, but then when opened changes to show a more solid image.” McCartney points out that they can be displayed on a wall, like her art work — although much cheaper: the scarves retail from £385 ($507.6).

Produced in Italy, the scarves are made in limited edition runs of 99 individually-numbered units and come with a certificate of authentication. “It’s a nice way of keeping it controlled,” she says. “It’s not a mass project.”


THE MAN BEHIND THE BEATLES : BRIAN EPSTEIN

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It was the summer of 1963 and a cultural earthquake was resetting the foundations of British popular music. And from being a place usually more associated with breeding comedians, the city of Liverpool had overnight become the capital of pop.

The Beatles had started it with No.1 hits From Me To You and She Loves You, but then right behind them came Gerry and the Pacemakers’ How Do You Do It? and I Like It — followed by Billy J Kramer’s Do You Want To Know A Secret? and Bad To Me.

 1 John Lennon 2 Ringo Starr 3 George Harrison 4 Paul McCartney 5 Gerry Marsden 6 Freddie Marsden 7 John ‘Les’ Chadwick 8 Les Maguire 9 Robin MacDonald 10 Mike Maxfield 11 Billy J. Kramer 12 Ray Jones 13 Tony Mansfield 14 Brian Epstein

Six months earlier, when these 13 young men were still following each other on stage at the tiny Cavern Club in Liverpool, to have imagined that such success could happen would have seemed lunatic.
Something was happening right across the country in those early Sixties days. Not only in music and not only in Liverpool.
Brian Samuel Epstein (19 September 1934 – 27 August 1967), was an English music entrepreneur, best known for being the manager of The Beatles
Brian made the Sixties swing by discovering the best of Mersyside from the Beatles to Gerry and the Pacemakers. Just four years later he would die from a drugs overdose.

What happened to them?

1 John Lennon, murdered in Manhattan, New York, aged 40, December 1980.

2 Ringo Starr, 77, has just played Las Vegas after releasing his latest album, Give More Love, last month.

3 George Harrison, died aged 58 from lung cancer in Beverly Hills, California, in November 2001.

4 Paul McCartney, 75, played Brazil last night during his current world tour.

5 Gerry Marsden, 75, lead singer/guitarist with Gerry and the Pacemakers, is currently on a farewell UK tour.

He had No. 1 hits (all 1963) with How Do You Do It?, I Like It and You’ll Never Walk Alone. Ferry Cross The Mersey reached No. 8 in 1964.

Marsden made a brief return to No.1 in 1985 with a superstar recording of You’ll Never Walk Alone to benefit victims of the Bradford City stadium fire. The Pacemakers disbanded in 1966 but reformed in 1974 with a new line-up.

He was awarded the MBE in 2003 (the same year he underwent a triple heart by-pass), and has since been given the Freedom of the City of Liverpool. Describes Lennon as his ‘best pal’ and regretted they never wrote together.

Marsden is a lifelong fan of Liverpool Football Club and You’ll Never Walk Alone has been sung at almost every home game since being adopted by the Kop in 1963. He performed it at Wembley at the 1989 FA Cup final in honour of fans who had died at Hillsborough the previous month.

He has been married to wife Pauline for 27 years and has two daughters and a grandson. Lives on The Wirral in Merseyside.

6 Freddie Marsden, died aged 66 in 2006 in Southport, Lancashire. He was the brother of Gerry Marsden and played drums for Gerry and the Pacemakers.

He was touted as a possible replacement for the Fab Four’s first drummer, Pete Best, who was sacked in 1962, but Freddie countered: ‘That’s rubbish. Look at my high forehead. I could never have had a Beatle haircut for a start.’

After the group broke up, he became a telephone operator on £14 a week, then joined the Civil Service. He later opened a driving school (called Pacemakers). Once asked if he still had his drums, he said: ‘No, I got rid of them. They took up too much space in the garage.’ He was married to Margaret, with a son and daughter.

7 John ‘Les’ Chadwick, 74, Pacemakers’ bassist. He stayed with the group until their break-up in 1966, then set up a garage business with fellow Pacemaker Les Maguire and moved to Australia, where he opened an employment agency in Sydney.

8 Les Maguire, 75, Pacemakers’ keyboard player. After the group broke up, he briefly fronted the Mississippi blues band, Hog Owl in 1970, and teamed up with the Pacemakers for occasional reunion performances. He lives in Formby, Merseyside.

9 Robin MacDonald, died in 2015, aged 72. He was founder, guitarist and bassist of Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas. Originally from Manchester, the band began as The Dakotas before becoming Liverpudlian singer Billy J. Kramer’s backing band, at manager Brian Epstein’s request.

Hits with Billy J. Kramer include Do You Want To Know A Secret, Bad To Me, I’ll Keep You Satisfied and From A Window — all penned by Lennon and McCartney.

The band broke up in 1967 but reformed 20 years later. When the original Dakotas split, MacDonald joined Engelbert Humperdinck’s backing band and supported Frank Sinatra. Although no longer involved in music, his daughter Sarah Mac is a singer/songwriter.

10 Mike Maxfield, 73, songwriter/guitarist with Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas. He left the band in 1965 but rejoined 20 years later. Despite suffering a stroke in 2004, Maxfield worked on TV shows in America, where he still lives.

11 Billy J. Kramer (William Ashton), 74, lead singer of Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas. Still making music and performing across the world. In 2013 he released the CD I Won The Fight. He says: ‘I’m not planning on retiring.’ He lives with his second wife in America.

12 Ray Jones, bassist with Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas, died in 2000, aged 60, of a heart attack. He left the band after a row over money with Epstein. He joined other bands before quitting music to work as a psychiatric nurse and then as a computer instructor for the handicapped.

13 Tony Mansfield (Anthony Bookbinder), 74, drummer with Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas. Brother of singer Elkie Brooks, he left music in 1999 for a career in finance and lives in Manchester.

14 Brian Epstein, manager of The Beatles, Gerry and the Pacemakers and Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas. He died of an accidental drugs overdose aged 32 in 1967. After his death, Paul McCartney said: ‘If anyone was the fifth Beatle, it was Brian.’


FORMER SID BERNSTEIN HOME UP FOR SALE

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The former home of Sid Bernstein, the music mogul often credited with the Beatles’ American success, is being shopped off-market for $4.4 million. The home is likely to win the fancy of James Dean fans, considering it was used in the opening credits of “Rebel Without a Cause.” Located on Franklin Avenue in the Hollywood Hills, the two-story home has five bedrooms and four bedrooms across 4,400 square feet of living space.

The home last traded for $2 million in 2010, when executives at film distribution and production company MonteCristo International Entertainment, acquired the site, records show. Darian Robin of the Agency has the off-market listing.

Bernstein, who passed away in 2013 at age 95, is best known for bringing the Beatles to mainstream America. He was also instrumental in the success of the Rolling Stones, the Moody Blues, Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett.


RINGO & HIS ALL STARR BAND IN LAS VEGAS

By Posted on 0 19

Ringo & His All Starr Band at Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas.