The AWESOME! page has random music stuff that I think is cool. You never know what you will find here!
Here are some of the musicians and singers who left us in 2022. Check my blog for entries on several of these artists.
Meat Loaf – real name Marvin Aday, his Bat Out of Hell trilogy of albums sold over 100 million copies worldwide. His single Paradise By the Dashboard Light is a personal favorite of mine, requested at every wedding dance. His I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That) topped 18 charts worldwide, including the Hot 100, and he won a Grammy award for it. He was 74 years old.
Anita Pointer – one of the original three The Pointer Sisters, Anita was the last original surviving sister (the oldest sister, Ruth, joined three years after the group was formed in 1969. Ruth continues to perform today). The Pointer Sisters had seven top 10 singles in the 70s and 80s, including #2 hits Fire and Slow Hand. Anita was 74 when she died of cancer.
Christine McVie – keyboardist, vocalist and songwriter for Fleetwood Mac, she joined the band in 1970, and she wrote or co-wrote many of their biggest hits. She contributed to 14 Fleetwood Mac albums, including the Rumours album, one of only nine albums that have sold over 40 million copies worldwide. The album is ranked #7 on Rolling Stone magazine’s Greatest Albums of All Time. McVie was 79 years old.
Irene Cara – singer of the song Fame and actress who starred in the film of the same name in 1980. Cara also co-wrote and sang the song Flashdance…Oh What a Feeling from the film Flashdance in 1983. Fame reached #4 on the Hot 100, and Flashdance…Oh What a Feeling topped 16 charts around the world, including the Hot 100. She won an Oscar and two Grammy awards for Flashdance. She died at the age of 63.
Aaron Carter – teen pop star and younger brother of Nick Carter of the Backstreet Boys. Aaron released his first album at the age of nine, and at twelve years old his second album went 3x platinum. He was 34 when he died.
Jerry Lee Lewis – one of the pioneers of Rockabilly, Lewis released 40 studio albums over his seven decade career. Rolling Stone ranked him at #24 on their Greatest Artists of All Time list. He was on his way to superstardom when he released singles like Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On and Great Balls of Fire, but his rock and roll career was derailed after his marriage to his 13 year old cousin (once removed) became public in 1957. Lewis was 87 at the time of his death.
Angela Lansbury – best known for her work in television, films and theater, she was part of several Original Cast Recordings of the musicals that she starred in, receiving Tony awards for Best Actress in a Musical for Mame, Dear World, Gypsy and Sweeny Todd, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Tony Award in 2022. Lansbury also was famous for her vocal and singing role as Mrs. Potts in Disney’s animated film Beauty and the Beast in 1991. She died at the age of 96.
Loretta Lynn – the Coal Miner’s Daughter, she enjoyed country music success in six decades, releasing 60 albums, topping the Country charts 16 times and winning three Grammy awards. No woman has won more awards in country music than Lynn. She was 90 when she died.
Coolio – rapper who won a Grammy award for his album Gangsta’s Paradise, the single of the same title was the #1 single for the entire year in 1995. It topped 24 international charts, and when Billboard published their chart of the top songs between 1958 and 2018, it was ranked #89. He was 59 years old.
Ramsey Lewis – one of jazz music’s greatest pianists, he recorded over 80 albums, releasing albums in eight different decades. His 1965 live album The In Crowd earned him one of his three Grammy awards, and it topped the R&B album chart while peaking at #2 on the pop album chart. The instrumental title track was released as a single, reaching #2 on the R&B chart and #5 on the Hot 100 chart. Lewis died at the age of 87.
Olivia Newton-John – the Australian-born singer won four Grammy awards and had five singles that topped the Hot 100 chart in her career. She starred with John Travolta in the musical film Grease in 1978, and the soundtrack to the film sold over 30 million copies worldwide. She battled breast cancer three times in her life, and became a major advocate for cancer research, before succumbing to the disease at 73 years old.
Jim Seals – half of the 70s duo Seals and Crofts, they had major hits with soft rock singles including Summer Breeze, Diamond Girl and Get Closer. All three songs peaked at #6 on the Hot 100 chart between 1972 and 1976. He died at the age of 79.
Mickey Gilley – country music singer who had 16 singles reach #1 on the country chart between 1974 and 1983, his cover of Stand By Me in 1980 was used in the soundtrack to the film Urban Cowboy, becoming a signature song for Gilley. The song crossed over to the Hot 100, peaking at #22, while topping the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Gilley died of bone cancer at the age of 86.
Naomi Judd – together with her daughter Wynonna, the Judds had fifteen #1 hits on the country charts in the 80s. Naomi committed suicide the day before she and Wynonna were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. She was 76 years old.
Bobby Rydell – teen idol singer who released his first single at the age of 17. He had eighteen singles reach the Hot 100 Top 40, with Wild One reaching #2 in 1960, Volare peaking at #4 in 1960 and Forget Him reaching #4 in 1964. He was 79 when he died.
C.W. McCall – real name William Fries, he was in the advertising business, and he created a character named C.W. McCall, a truck driving country singer, for a series of bread commercials. He started recording country albums using the moniker, speaking the lyrics rather than singing them. In 1975, his novelty song Convoy went to #1 on the Country chart and the Hot 100. He was 93 years old.
Taylor Hawkins – beloved drummer for the Foo Fighters, he joined the band in 1997, three years after Dave Grohl started the group. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame along with the others in the group in October 2021 – five months later, he was suffering chest pains in Bogota Colombia, and he was found dead in his hotel room at the age of 50.
Ronnie Spector – Co-founder of the girl group The Ronnetts, Veronica Bennett became Ronnie Spector when she married her record producer, Phil Spector. The Ronnetts most famous song was 1963’s Be My Baby – it reached #2 on the Hot 100 and was ranked #22 on Rolling Stone’s list of the Greatest Songs of All Time. The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson wrote their hit Don’t Worry Baby as a response song to Be My Baby. Spector died at the age of 78.
RIP all of the fine artists who passed away in 2022. Soon after Taylor Hawkins died, the Foo Fighters performed a tribute concert, and Taylor’s 16 year old son Shane took over the drums during the band’s performance of the song My Hero. Here is a video of it – really amazing, and chilling!