1929: Blind Lemon Jefferson was left for dead on the street, dying of exposure. Reports
were that he had a heart attack. The death certificate has been mysteriously "misplaced".
More than one city has been cited as the location of his death.
1937: Bessie Smith was allowed to bleed to death after a suspicious car crash. Where
was the medical attention that could have saved her? Was this the Princess Diana
scenario? Too slow of an ambulance ride to save her?
1938: Robert Johnson. The King of The Delta Blues and a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame
inductee, Johnson has been called the "Father of Rock & Roll". Poisoned.
1943: Fats Waller was a big influence in his time. Died on a train, just like in
those murder mystery movies.
1944: Glenn Miller. One of the most infamous cases of a musician's mysterious deaths,
Glenn Miller was a popular big-band leader with heavy blues influence into his music
and he was decidedly moving more in that direction. Was his plane really hit from
above by a bomb from another plane? Come on. See Story.
1948: Sonny Boy Williamson, another murdered Blues artist.
1953: The year that saw the beginning of the Blues influence into Country Music eventually
causing the death of many of its stars. Influenced by the Blues, Country Music would
have an impact on many people that had not previously been exposed to the Blues.
A very scary thought to those that would want to suppress the power of the Blues
- and the people.
1953: Hank Williams was a Country/Blues crossover Artist that would have been one
of the biggest stars in both Country Music and The Blues. Just listen to the pure
Blues in his songs and stories. "Officially" it was a heart attack. But at the
age of 29? And what about the morphine that a doctor had given him earlier that
1953: Big Maceo was another crossover Blues/Country Artist. The "Official" line
was that he had a stroke. Or was he perhaps becoming too strong of an influence
to the other country musicians who were looking at the blues?
1953: Carolina Slim was just one of the many Blues Artists that would die mysteriously
during what should have been a routine surgical procedure. Carolina Slim went in
for simple back surgery, but supposedly died of a heart attack.
1954: Edwin Howard Armstrong was not a Blues Artist. He was even more powerful -
having invented FM radio. He died after a drop out of his 13th floor apartment window.
His death did not stop the movement of the peoples rebellion as was hoped for. FM
radio would go on to become a major driving force behind Rock & Roll Music, and of
course the Blues by correlation. Several sources cite suicide as the cause. Then
why is David Sarnoff quoted as saying that he did not kill Armstrong?
1955: Vernon Isley was one of the Isley Brothers mixing Blues into their Rhythm &
Blues and Soul Music. Vernon killed in a bike accident when he was run over by a
1959: The Day The Music Died. Heading into a level of stardom not known up to this
point, these big three artists were about to change History. Buddy Holly and the
Big Bopper were from Texas and blended Blues into their style of Rockabilly. Ritchie
Valens, from Los Angeles, was to have influenced millions and millions with his own
particular mix of Blues, Latino and Rock. See Story.A controversial story with
missing evidence and a fired weapon. Yet they called it a weather related plane
1960: Eddie Cochran: Rock and Blues singer with several hits including the original
“Summertime Blues”. He would have been a huge Blues-Rocker. His "Summertime Blues"
says it all about where he was heading music-wise. He died in the typical setup
- a staged auto accident.
1960: Johnny Horton. Another car accident. He was on his way with a couple of hits
under his belt with a Country-Rock-Blues flavored sound.
1962: Ronnie Smith replaced Buddy Holly for the remainder of that 1959 tour. Why
would he then hang himself? Guilt or murder? Some say suicide. Some say suicided.
1962: Marilyn Monroe's mysterious death is still the subject of theories and discussions.
See Detailed Story.
1963: Cowboy Copas. Country and Blues. Plane crash.
1963: Hawkshaw Hawkins. Country and Blues. Plane crash.
1963: Patsy Cline. Country / Blues. Plane crash.
1963: Elmore James was a major Blues artist and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee.
Heart attack was the "official" lie.
1963: Dinah Washington was a Blues influenced Pop - Jazz - R&B artist with Country
stylings. Ala Marilyn Monroe cover-up style she supposed overdosed on sleeping pills.
1964: Jim Reeves was a major Country star with Pop talent and would have taken his
Blues influenced music into a lot of homes and played on a variety of musical styled
radio stations. They could not let that happen, so they resorted to their plane
1964: Johnny Burnette was drowned. He sang Blues-Rock-Pop.
1964: Sam Cooke was a Blues-Rhythm & Blues - Soul Music talent that was murdered.
See Detailed Story.
1965: Bill Black. Played with Elvis. Had his own band. Died in a surgery that
he may not have needed? Was this to scare Elvis?
1966: Bobby Fuller headed up the Bobby Fuller Four Band and they produced a Rock
with Blues feel. Their big hit was "I Fought The Law" and they were poised to break
out . That is until Bobby Fuller was murdered at the age of 22. See Detailed Story.
1967: Otis Redding. "Dock Of The Bay" is a standard. He would have had a ton of
hits. Plane crash, of course.
1967: Jimmy King, along with the Bar Kays. Plane crash, again.
1968: Frankie Lymon was making the crossover from R&B influences into Rock. Suicided
by drug overdose.
1969: Brian Jones, Rolling Stones' guitarist. The Rolling Stones were heavily influenced
by the early Blues. They were trouble for the establishment from the beginning.
They were too popular and too impressive upon the teens of the mid to late sixties,
and now they about to move more towards their Blues roots. This would have moved
a whole herd of young people to become aware of of a music genre that they barely
knew existed. Threats to stop their music were of no use. A major hand had to be
played to crush this resistance. Brian was drowned. The Stones were not silenced,
but they did end their move from Rock to pure Blues. See Detailed Story.
1970's: At this point in time, it appears that the method of choice was moving away
from plane crashes to more car crashes (even though more artists were actually flying
to gigs) and to overdoses and tainted drugs. Just remember that if you struggle
to make it big, and then you finally hit the top you are not really a candidate for
suicide. The feds think we can’t figure that out.
1970: Alan Wilson was the murdered guitar player from Canned Heat. Murdered? Yes
because the official verdict was overdosed suicide, yet there are confusing stories
behind his disappearance and reappearance. Do we believe that a Canned Heat member
would screw up and overdose?
1970: Jimi Hendrix was a SuperStar in the making. Pure Blues in his fingers, bottled
up and sold as Rock. Such a huge talent, he would have become too big for them to
even consider allowing the Blues connection to be laid on the masses of Rock fans.
1970: Janis Joplin was pure Blues in a Rock & Roll wrapper. Just listen to her wail.
Overdose? Janis? Not likely. She knew how to handle her booze and drugs. Suicided
to prevent her from pushing further into the Blues.
1971: Jim Morrison, lead singer of the Doors. Mysterious? Drug Overdose? Heart
attack? Many stories. Many post mortem sightings. Did he just go into hiding?
Did he run to protect himself or the Band members? Was he forced to hide to avoid
the attempts on his life? At every concert the police were there, always looking
for a reason to shut Jim down. And what about all those sightings. More than bigfoot.
Was that really him in the crowd at his own funeral? And then there is the story
that his family has only leased his burial plot. Who only rents the internment site
if there is a body there?
1971: King Curtis. Blues artist. Murdered.
1971: Duane Allman and the Allman Brothers Band were all about the Blues Rocked-Up.
Is a staged motorcycle accident really any different from a staged car crash?
1971: Devon Wilson. Groupie Girlfriend of Jimi Hendrix. Mysteriously fell out
the window of the Chelsea Hotel? Did she know too much?
1971: Gene Vincent died from a car crash wound. He was in the car that killed Eddie
Cochran 11 years earlier, but Gene survived that crash. How long do you think you
can stay ahead of their grasp? Note that there are 2 or 3 different causes of death
1972: Jimmy Rushing. Blues artist pure and simple, he died from mysterious blood
disease of unknown origin.
1972: Clyde McPhatter. Big time Rock and Blues artist that was destined for greatness.
He died in his late thirties and the changing reports read heart attack, no wait,
liver failure, wait, we mean kidney failure. Always know that there is foul play
when the story keeps changing. There is only one truth, not several.
1972: Brain Cole of The Association was at the top of the charts. But now they wanted
to leave soft pop rock behind and move into some serious Blues. But after Brian's
"overdose", The Association moved back to Rock and never again pursued the Blues
album that that they were rumored to have been getting ready to record with an unnamed
"Blues King" as producer. It was the end of The Association.
1972: Berry Oakly. Another Allman Brother. Another motorcycle "accident". Would
this be enough to stop the band altogether?
1973: Mike Jeffrey was the Manager for Jimi Hendrix and The Animals. When was the
last time that you heard of a plane that simply exploded in mid air?
1973: Paul Williams, member of the Temptations. Officials say suicide. Family says
murder. We call it suicided.
1973: Gram Parsons. Member of The Byrds, who were best known for their Country tinged
Rock. They were rumored to be heading to the studio for a Blues session with a major
label. Gram died of an "overdose" and we never heard the real cause of death or
of that album again. And why was his body stolen?
1973: Jim Croce. Another plane crash.
1973: Jerry Lee Lewis Jr. His dad (Jerry Lee Lewis) was being coerced to get out
of the music, and especially the Blues - Country that was storming the nation. Jerry
Lee told them he'd do whatever kind of music he wanted, and where to stick it. True
Jerry Lee Lewis fashion. Car crash. Jerry stayed under attack as he lost another
son & two wives with suspicious circumstances. In addition, his girlfriend, Bonny
Lee Bakley (with whom they had a daughter) was rumored murdered by Robert Blake.
1974: Ed Sullivan was a victim of his own success. Too much exposure of Blues (and
Rock) artists on his show. They say cancer, but do we really know?
1974: Duke Ellington: Big Band mostly, but with a little Blues laced in, he could
not be allowed to move completely into Blues song stylings. He died . . . well you
know - multiple causes.
1974: Mama Cass Elliot. Where the Mammas And The Papas about to move towards Blues-rooted
music? They certainly had enough following that if they did, they would have taken
a large following with them. Now what was it that killed Mama? Heart attack? Peanut
butter sandwich? Ham sandwich? We've heard 'em all. Remember that when they confuse
the issue, they are hiding something.
1974: Bill Chase, the leader of Jazz-Rock group Chase had put out some fine music.
Bill was rumored to be heading to the studio to add a Blues-Rock album to his play
list. Chase would have been a major Rock-Blues-Jazz influence. Plane crash.
1975: Pete Ham. Badfinger member. They were mostly rock, but their Wales background
was going to lead them to release a Blues album that was supposed to have been more
than half finished at the time of Pete's death. Never saw the light of day as beat
that we can establish. No one even has discovered the demo tapes. Hung? Suicide?
Or just too much Blues success potential for them to be allowed to continue?
1976: Keith Relf. The Yardbirds were heavily influenced by the Blues, as well as
later being an influence to many other Rock artists' move into using the Blues as
a basis for their sound. Electrocuted. Just a reminder to the rest of the Yardbirds
graduate to get out if you want to live.
1976: Freddie King. Questions abound as to the exact cause of his death, but no
questions about his power as a major Blues artist. Some say heart attack. Some
say other organs failed, or were poisoned?
1977: Ronnie Van Zant - Steven Gains - Cassie Gains - Dean Kilpatrick were all members
of Lynrd Skynrd. Eliminating a premier Blues-influenced Country/Southern Rock band.
Some of you have run out of gas in your car. I've done it three times. But do
you believe that the band ran out of gas in their plane? Come on. Who is buying
into that? You either believe in the CURSE- or - the MURDER.
1978: Keith Moon - The Who drummer and Peter Meaden - The Who Manager. The Who were
about to return to Pete Townsend's roots with an all Blues album that would have
rocked the music world as we knew it back then. It was not to be. Sometime when
someone close to you dies, you get the message. Drug overdose was the official report.
Interestingly enough, in 2004 Pete Townsend had ideas of actually completing that
Blues project, but before they could get it going in the studio, he was hit with
trumped up child porn charges. I guess he is just a slow learner. Or maybe he figured
that enough time had passed that he could get away with it. No such luck. They
dare not allow the "Who’s Blues" album to ever see the light of day. And what about
the ties to Paul McCartney and Mama Cass?
1978: Pete Meaden, Who Manager. Suicided. See Keith Moon.
1979: Donnie Hathaway. Soul and Blues artist on the verge of a major breakthrough
to the crossover crowd of listeners that would have put the Blues onto a lot more
Soul radio stations. He had recorded with Roberta Flack and was preparing for another
block buster. But before that could happen he "fell" out of a 15th floor hotel window.
What was the last time you heard of a grown adult falling out of a 15th floor window