Archive for Musicians

Eddie Cochran

Posted in Forest Lawn Cypress with tags , on October 1, 2019 by Cade

October 3, 1938 – April 17, 1960

Rock ‘n’ roll and Rockabilly pioneer Eddie Cochran began playing guitar as a young boy. He got pretty good, pretty quick. By the time he was high school, he knew he was destined to be a musician. He dropped out and never looked back. By the time he was 16, he was already in the studio and, by 1957, had his first hit – “Sittin’ in the Balcony” – at the age of 18. That same year he appeared alongside Jayne Mansfield and a slew of other musicians in the comedy The Girl Can’t Help It. His career exploded. Continue reading

Richard Street

Posted in Forest Lawn Cypress with tags , , , on September 27, 2019 by Cade

street2October 5, 1942 – February 27, 2013

Richard Street was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. He attended Northwestern High School with his cousin, Melvin Franklin, and another young man named Otis Williams. Along with Al Bryant and a few others, they formed the singing group that would eventually become Otis Williams and the Distants. In 1960, Williams, Franklin and Bryant left the Distants to form the Elgins…which became the Temptations. Continue reading

Sandy West

Posted in Forest Lawn Cypress with tags , on September 24, 2019 by Cade

July 10, 1959 – October 21, 2006

In the summer of 1975, a 15 year-old drummer named Sandra Pesavento (going by “Sandy West”) met a 16 year-old guitarist named Joan Larkin (going by “Joan Jett”). They liked each other instantly and decided to start an all-girl rock band. Continue reading

Rick James

Posted in Forest Lawn Cemetery (NY) with tags , , , on September 2, 2019 by Cade

February 1, 1948 – August 6, 2004

James Ambrose Johnson Jr. was born in Buffalo, NY. His mother worked as a dancer and numbers runner to make ends meet. Young James would often accompany her on her rounds and he was exposed to bars that featured musicians like Miles Davis and Etta James. Needless to say, he liked what he saw and it was music from there out. Well, music and drugs, but I digress. He got in trouble quite a bit as a young man, so he joined the Navy, as one does. Not finding military life to be for him, and finding himself under orders to go to Vietnam, he fled to Toronto and started performing music under the name Ricky James Matthews. Long story short, he met Neil Young, moved to Detroit, met Stevie Wonder (who encouraged him to shorten his stage name to “Ricky James”) and signed with Motown. Continue reading

Jeff Healey

Posted in Park Lawn Cemetery (ON) with tags , , on August 5, 2019 by Cade

healey2March 25, 1966 – March 2, 2008

Jeff Healey’s place in pop-culture extends well beyond the fact that he was a talented blues-rock guitarist and singer who had one really great year. His eponymous trio, The Jeff Healey Band, had a monster hit in Canada and the U.S. with 1989’s “Angel Eyes” and he dominated the Toronto club scene in the mid-to-late 1980s. After the success of their first single and album, The JHB went on to record four more albums over the ensuing dozen or so years. But, Jeff didn’t just front his blues-rock band. Continue reading

Johnny Ramone

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , , on September 12, 2018 by Cade

October 8, 1948 – September 15, 2004

Guitarist for the pioneer punk group the Ramones, Johnny Ramone (John William Cummings) was the downstroke/bar chord king. Formed in 1974 in Forest Hills, Queens, Johnny, Joey, Dee Dee and Tommy Ramone (all adopted pseudonyms) exploded onto the New York City club scene with their “wall of sound” and lightning fast songs. Their performances at storied venues GBGB and Max’s Kansas City drew massive attention and helped usher in a new genre of rock-and-roll: Punk. Johnny’s no-nonsense playing style was the rhythmic driving force behind the band’s massive hits like “Rockaway Beach”, “I Wanna Be Sedated” and “Blitzkrieg Bop.” Continue reading

Dee Dee Ramone

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , on September 11, 2018 by Cade

September 18, 1951 – June 5, 2002

1-2-3-4…

Douglas Colvin, aka Dee Dee Ramone, was the bass player and most prominent songwriter for the legendary punk rock band, the Ramones. Colvin was the first to adopt a “Ramone” pseudonym after urging the rest of the band to do the same and call themselves the Ramones. Early on, Dee Dee was the main singer, but eventually opted to just play, leading to former-drummer Joey taking over lead vocals. After recording 11 albums with the Ramones, Dee Dee left the band in 1989 to pursue other solo projects – including, but certainly not limited to, a critically-panned hip hop album. Continue reading