Category 1930

The Talented Jumpin’ Gene Simmons

The Talented Jumpin’ Gene Simmons

Jumpin’ Gene Simmons

Jumpin’ Gene Simmons (July 10, 1933 – August 29, 2006) was an American rockabilly singer and songwriter, best known for his 1964 novelty single “Haunted House”.

Jumpin’ Gene Simmons
Birth name Morris Eugene Simmons
Born July 10, 1933
Itawamba County, Mississippi, United States
Origin Tupelo, Mississippi, United States
Died August 29, 2006 (aged 73)
Genres Rock and roll, pop, rockabilly
Occupations Singer, songwriter
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1958–2006

Biography

He was born Morris Eugene Simmons in Itawamba County, Mississippi, and began his recording career with Sun Records in 1958 while performing as an opening act for former labelmate Elvis Presley...

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The Talented Lena Horne Part One

The Talented Lena Horne Part One

Lena Horne
Lena Mary Calhoun Horne (June 30, 1917 – May 9, 2010) was an American jazz and pop music singer, dancer, actress, and civil rights activist. Horne’s career spanned over 70 years appearing in film, television, and theater. Horne joined the chorus of the Cotton Club at the age of 16 and became a nightclub performer before moving to Hollywood, where she had small parts in numerous movies, and more substantial parts in the 1943 films Cabin in the Sky and Stormy Weather. Because of the Red Scare and her political activism, Horne found herself blacklisted and unable to get work in Hollywood.
Lena Horne

Publicity photo of Horne for her stage show Nine O’Clock Revue, 1961
Born
Lena Mary Calhoun Horne
June 30, 1917
Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York...

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Happy Birthday Buddy Holly

Buddy Holly’s (September 7,1936-February 3,1959) birthday is today, and I’m not sure if anyone is going to celebrate it. For he was part of the 1950’s music scene and was one of the contenders that was overthrowing Elvis Presley. Even though Buddy Holly started his musical career in the 1950’s, you hear anything about him on any 1950’s specials or Greatest Hits album, and he died before the 1960’s started. Yet Buddy Holly inspired others to write songs and sing them as well, for the most part, most part, you were either singing songs for yourself or on your own or writing for others.

Buddy Holly is the first to wear glasses, where others were told that they can’t wear them...

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Little Richard Born: December 5,1932-Still Alive Part Seven

Little Richard Born: December 5,1932-Still Alive Part Seven

Society

In addition to his musical style, Little Richard was cited as one of the first crossover black artists, reaching audiences of all races. His music and concerts broke the color line, drawing blacks and whites together despite attempts to sustain segregation. As H.B. Barnum explained in Quasar of Rock, Little Richard “opened the door. He brought the races together.” Barnum described Little Richard’s music as not being “boy-meets-girl-girl-meets-boy things, they were fun records, all fun. And they had a lot to say sociologically in our country and the world...

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Little Richard Born: December 5,1932-Still Alive Part Six

Little Richard Born: December 5,1932-Still Alive Part Six

Health problems

In October 1985, Little Richard returned to the United States from England, where he had finished recording his album Lifetime Friend, to film a guest spot on the show, Miami Vice. Following the taping, he accidentally crashed his sports car into a telephone pole in West Hollywood, California. He suffered a broken right leg, broken ribs and head and facial injuries. His recovery from the accident took several months. His accident prevented him from being able to attend the inaugural Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony in January 1986 where he was one of several inductees. He instead supplied a recorded message.
In 2007, Little Richard was having problems walking due to sciatica in his left leg, requiring him to use c...

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Johnny Cash Born: February 26,1932-Died: September 12,2003 Part Five

Johnny Cash Born: February 26,1932-Died: September 12,2003 Part Five

Last years

Cash’s original grave (top) and the Cash/Carter memorial
In 1997, Cash was diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease Shy–Drager syndrome, a form of multiple system atrophy; according to biographer Robert Hilburn, the disease was originally misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s disease, and Cash even announced to a concert audience that he had Parkinson’s during a show in Flint, Michigan, on October 25, 1997, after he nearly collapsed on stage; soon after his diagnosis was changed to Shy–Drager and Cash was told he had approximately 18 months to live. The diagnosis was later again altered to autonomic neuropathy associated with diabetes. The illness forced Cash to curtail his touring...

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James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Ten

James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Ten

Filmography

* The T.A.M.I. Show (1964) (concert film)- with The Famous Flames
* Ski Party (1965)- with The Famous Flames
* James Brown: Man to Man (1968) (concert film)
* The Phynx (1970)
* Black Caesar (1973) (soundtrack only)
* Slaughter’s Big Ripoff (1974) (soundtrack only)
* Adiós Amigo (1976)
* The Blues Brothers (1980)
* Doctor Detroit (1983)
* Rocky IV (1985)
* James Brown: Live in East Berlin (1989)
* The Simpsons (1993)
* When We Were Kings (1996) (documentary)
* Soulmates (1997)
* Blues Brothers 2000 (1998)
* Holy Man (1998)
* portrayed by Carlton Smith in Liberty Heights (1999)
* Undercover Brother (2002)
* The Tuxedo (2002)
* The Hire: Beat The Devil (2002) (short film)
* Sesame Street (1999–2009)
* Paper Chasers (...

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James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Nine

James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Nine

Legacy

A mural of James Brown, titled “Mr. Dynamite”, in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood of Cincinnati, Ohio where he produced some of his earliest hits for King Records
James Brown received a variety of awards and honors throughout his lifetime and after his death. At one city, fans voted to honor Brown by naming a bridge after the entertainer. In 1993 the City Council of Steamboat Springs, Colorado conducted a poll of its residents to choose a new name for the bridge that crossed the Yampa River on Shield Drive. The winning name with 7,717 votes was “James Brown Soul Center of the Universe Bridge”. The bridge was officially dedicated in September 1993, and James Brown appeared at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the event...

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James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Eight

James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Eight

Personal life

At the end of his life, James Brown lived in a riverfront home in Beech Island, South Carolina, directly across the Savannah River from Augusta, Georgia. Brown had diabetes that went undiagnosed for years, according to his longtime manager Charles Bobbit. In 2004, Brown was successfully treated for prostate cancer. Regardless of his health, Brown maintained his reputation as the “hardest working man in show business” by keeping up with his grueling performance schedule.

Marriages and children

Brown was married four times. His first marriage was to Velma Warren in 1953...

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James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Seven

James Brown Born: May 3,1933-Died: December 25,2005 Part Seven

Civil rights and self-reliance

Though Brown performed at benefit rallies for civil rights organizations in the mid-1960s, Brown often shied away from discussing civil rights in his songs. In 1968, in response to a growing urge of anti-war advocacy during the Vietnam War, Brown recorded the song, “America Is My Home”. In the song, Brown performed a rap, advocating patriotism and exhorting listeners to “stop pitying yoursel[ves] and get up and fight.” At the time of the song’s release, Brown had been participating in performing for troops stationed in Vietnam. A day after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., Brown gave out a televised concert at the Boston Garden to calm concerned Boston relatives...

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