Home Chennai The year the music died

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    We say goodbye to legends who give us a reason to live louder, even if they are no longer with us

    Wake me up before you go-go is a nostalgic wish — with the number of legends that have bid us adieu in 2016. Some were abrupt, others plain shocking. But here’s something we can agree on irrespective, we weren’t ready for any of them. Certainly not our most recent loss on Christmas day. Wham! And George Michael was gone… just like that. On the flip side, our playlists in 2017 will probably be bursting at the seams with songs that we haven’t heard in a while. That’s music for you, a fast tide of memories and melody. And the best tribute we can pay to musicians lost: Press play.

    David Bowie
    (Jan 8, 1947 – Jan 10, 2016)

    This legend gave us his final album two days before he died. Beyond the music, Bowie will always be remembered for that trademark lightning bolt painted across his face and a wild sense of androgynous fashion that covered everything from sci-fi suits to kimonos. He died peacefully surrounded by family after a secret battle with cancer.

     Maurice White

    (Dec 19, 1941 – Feb 4, 2016)

    Before you dismiss this musician as a not-so-recognisable face compared to the rest — know this. He was nominated was a massive 20 Grammys in his prime.
    Old timers will remember him as the co-founder of the band Earth, Wind & Fire. The musician, who stopped touring in the ’90s after he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, succumbed to the illness in his sleep earlier this year. He was 74.

    Ustad Abdul Rashid Khan
    (Aug 19, 1908 – Feb 18, 2016)

    He was definitely the oldest musician on our list. This Padma Bhushan awardee passed away at the grand age of 107, and continued to teach music until a day before his death.

    Balamuralikrishna
    (July 6, 1930 – Nov 22, 2016)

    The maestro of Carnatic music is said to have performed in over 18,000 concerts around the world, before he passed away at the age of 86. Incidentally, he started out in the film industry as an actor, and played the role of Narada in the film Bhakta Prahalada on the request of A V Meyappa Chettiar.

    Prince

    (June 7, 1958 – Apr 21, 2016)

    From Purple Rain to Musicology, this legend had us addicted to his sound and style for over 35 years. He was known for his love symbol created in protest against long time record label Warner Bros. The singer passed away after a drug overdose at 57.

     Glenn Frey

    (Nov 6, 1948 – Jan  18, 2016)

    You may not recognise the name
    as easily as the song. This was the guitarist who co-wrote Hotel California and was also a founding member of The Eagles. Frey passed away at 67, a little over a week
    after David Bowie, who died at 69.

     George Michael

    (June 25, 1963 – Dec 25, 2016)

    It was not a Merry Christmas for those who woke to the news of his passing of heart failure at the age of 53. The boyfriend of the Grammy-winning musician posted a link of an unreleased song that fans only got to hear after his death. The tragic timing of it all hardly inspires any Faith.

     Leonard Cohen

    (Sept 21, 1934 – Nov 7, 2016)

    This Canadian singer and poet was among a niche brand of extremely influential singer-songwriters back in the ’60s. So much so that critics compared him to the likes of Bob Dyan and was even referenced in the Nirvana song, Pennyroyal Tea. After a career spanning over five decades, he died unexpectedly at the age of 82. According to his son, Cohen died peacefully and had been writing till the very end.

    Strains gone silent

    Sharon Jones Soul & funk singer
    Frank Sinatra Jr Singer, songwriter, conductor
    Leon Russell Pop musician, songwriter
    John Berry Original Beastie Boys member
    Merle Haggard Country singer, songwriter
    Malik Taylor aka Phife Dawg Rapper
    Paul Kantner Co-founder of Jefferson Airplane
    Keith Emerson Of Emerson, Lake & Palmer
    Greg Lake Of Emerson, Lake & Palmer
    Rick Parfitt Guitarist of Status Quo

     

    Sonali Shenoy

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