Texas Musicians Remember Johnny Winter

Categories: Obituaries

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Michael Weintraub/Sony
Johnny Winter, 1944-2014
For more than 50 years, Johnny Winter made his guitar sing the blues. A lightning fast player mixed with a growling voice, Winter was part of a long lineage of Texas blues guitarists like Lightnin' Hopkins, T-Bone Walker and Stevie Ray Vaughan who simply didn't just play the blues but channeled them as if their fingers were lightning rods.

Winter felt the blues onstage. Tilting his head back, he'd close his eyes and allow his fingers to dance across the fretboard. Acoustic, electric, 12-string, 6-string, he dominated them all with the blues and became a guitar legend by the time he reached his mid-'20s.

Sadly, the "Texas Tornado" died on Wednesday, July 16, in his hotel room in Zurich, according to his publicist. He was 70 years old.

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In Honor of Oderus Urungus, the 5 Most Entertaining Gwar Videos

Categories: Obituaries

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Dave Brockie, better known as Gwar frontman/front-alien Oderus Urungus, passed away this morning, at the age of just 50. This follows the death of guitarist Cory Smoot, aka Flattus Maximus, in 2011, while the band were on tour. Forming the band of terrifying alien creatures in 1984, Brockie had long been the only remaining founding member of Gwar.

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Remembering Dallas' Jason Merito With a Benefit Concert

Categories: Obituaries

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Jason Merito: May 20, 1970 - March 2, 2014
It seems like that, in the last two years, we've lost too many musicians and industry leaders in the North Texas music scene: Ronald Shannon Jackson, Kidd Kraddick, Donovan Warren, Monte Aaron Krause, DJ Quick Chris, Summer Amshoff and, of course, Mike Scaccia.

Now Jason Merito joins the list of North Texas artists we should remember. He died of complications from accidentally overdosing on allergy medication on Sunday, March 2.

"To the best of my knowledge," said Mike Rios, a friend and coworker, "when he shot himself, it caused him to go into a state of shock like a coma. Oxygen quit going to his brain."

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Benjamin Curtis, of Secret Machines, Tripping Daisy, UFOFU and More, Has Died

Categories: Obituaries

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Justin Hollar
Benjamin Curtis (left) with School of Seven Bells
We here at DC9 at Night are extremely saddened to report the passing of Benjamin Curtis. Last night in New York, Curtis lost a year-long battle with cancer at the age of 35.

Though a native Oklahoman, Curtis was a Dallas resident and treasured member of the local music scene from the '90s well into the 2000s. In the mid-'90s, Curtis and his brother Brandon were members of local rock outfit UFOFU with Joe Butcher, before Ben left to spend a few years playing drums for Tripping Daisy. In 2000, the Curtis brothers started the spacey three-piece Secret Machines. Their debut full-length project, 2004's Now Here Is Nowhere, broke nationally to much critical acclaim. It will long be remembered as a Dallas classic.

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Lou Reed is Dead

Categories: Obituaries

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Flickr user Man Alive!

Legendary guitarist Lou Reed, a punk poet whose lyrics have influenced more than four generations of rockers, passed away on Sunday. He was 71 years old.

His literary agent, Andrew Wylie, shared the news of his death, claiming the singer/songwriter's death is due to complications with a recent liver transplant, The New York Times says. Lou's survived by his wife, friends and a legion of fans.


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Ronald Shannon Jackson, Fort Worth Jazz Pioneer, Died Yesterday

Categories: Obituaries

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Ronald Shannon Jackson in his last North Texas performance, July 2012. Image via Kessler X+ on YouTube
Ronald Shannon Jackson was a jazz drummer and composer from Fort Worth whose career spans 50 albums, collaborations with free jazz legends Cecil Taylor and Ornette Coleman and his own band, the Decoding Society.

Yesterday, Jackson's cousin Tobi Hero made the announcement on Facebook, saying, "Dear America, we are so sad to announce that my cousin Ronald Shannon Jackson passed away this morning in our home town Fort Worth Texas. Ronald will live thru our MUSIC every day."

Jackson died of leukemia. He was 73 years old.

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Wit's End Door Man M Oliver London has Died

Categories: Obituaries

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An illustration of Moe from a benefit show flyer.

M Oliver London was known around Deep Ellum as "Moe." He worked the door at Wit's End, where he was known for his welcoming demeanor and spirit. He died early this morning after suffering a stroke in late September.

He's been in the ICU for the last couple weeks. A benefit show was planned at Wit's End for this Sunday, October 13, to cover some of his bills, and some dozen bands joined the lineup.


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Jody Payne, Longtime Guitarist for Willie Nelson, Dies in Alabama

Categories: Obituaries

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Jody Payne performs "Working Man Blues" at Farm Aid 1994. Image via.
From 1973 to 2008, Jody Payne played guitar in Willie Nelson's Family band. The Kentucky-bred musician died over the weekend in Alabama, where he lived with his wife, teaching guitar lessons.

Willie has posted several tributes to his old bandmate on Facebook, starting with, "Sad to report that Jody Payne passes away. Our friend will be missed."

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At Kidd Kraddick's Makeshift Memorial: Flowers, Diet Coke and Disbelief

Categories: Obituaries

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In front of the Kidd Kraddick in the Morning radio show studio sits dozens of flower bouquets, Diet Coke cans -- Kraddick's favorite soda -- and posters with grievances from fans. Many of the messages read "keep looking up, cause that's where it all is," quoting Kraddick's signature radio sign off.

Antonio Trujillo, 24, and Michael Trujillo, 22, drove from Amarillo to say their final goodbyes to Kraddick.

"I used to put his shows in the station in Amarillo, 93.1 The Beat," says Antonio. "It was a must that I had to come out here and pay my respects. I always wanted to meet him. I'll never forget his sense of humor, he was made to be a radio star, but at the same time he didn't act like a star, he acted just like everybody else."


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Kidd Kraddick Dies at a Charity Golf Tournament [Update]

Categories: Obituaries

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Image via
Update: The Times-Picayune in New Orleans has just reported that Kidd Kradick died of cardiac disease -- information they collected from the preliminary autopsy results of the Jefferson Parish Coroner's Office. The investigation into his death is ongoing, but the coroner's office reports no abnormalities.

Original post follows...

Kidd Kraddick, who hosted the Dallas-based, nationally syndicated radio show Kidd Kraddick in the Morning, died yesterday in New Orleans. He was there for a fundraiser golf tournament for his Kidd's Kids charity. Kraddick started the day on the course but felt too ill to get past the first hole. The cause of his death has not been released.

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