Pop and Rock Chart Archive
and Music Encyclopedia

In Memory Of Recently Departed Artists

Major Harris songs Major Harris
February 9, 1947 to November 9, 2012
Major Harris was a soul singer, solo one hit wonder, and member of many soul vocal groups including The Delfonics, after the group was already famous. His most popular song came with solo one hit wonder Love Won't Let Me Wait.

  • Walk Right Up To The Sun
    Dec 1971

  • Love Won't Let Me Wait
    Jun 1975

    Penguins Earth Angel song discography Cleveland Duncan, The Penguins singer
    July 23, 1935 to November 7, 2012
    Cleveland Duncan was lead singer of The Penguins, a 1950's soul vocal group most famous for classic Earth Angel.


  • Pledge Of Love
    May 1957

    Suicide Silence songs Mitch Lucker, Suicide Silence singer
    October, 1984 to November 1, 2012
    Mitch Lucker was lead singer in California hardcore band Suicide Silence, most famous for Wake Up off album No Time To Bleed. According to his wife, Mitch Lucker insisted on driving his motorcycle while drunk, and crashed.

  • Wake Up
    Aug 2009

  • You Only Live Once
    Jul 2011

    Frank E Wilson, Motown soul song writer
    December 5, 1940 to September 27, 2012
    Frank E Wilson wrote songs for top Motown acts including Stevie Wonder, The Supremes, The Four Tops, and Eddie Kendricks. Frank Wilson also made The World's Rarest Record.

  • Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)
    Frank Wilson

  • Love Child
    Nov 1968

  • Boogie Down
    Feb 1974

    RB Greaves songs RB Greaves
    November 28, 1943 to September 27, 2012
    R.B. Greaves was a soul and dance singer and writer. He came to fame with the song Take A Letter To Maria. This was a top 20 one hit wonder. He also had some soul hits and a few remakes.

  • Take A Letter To Maria
    Nov 1969

    Oct 1971

    Andy Williams songs Andy Williams
    December 3, 1927 to September 25, 2012
    Andy Williams was a longtime star on TV with his own The Andy Williams Show. In 1962, he sang Moon River on the Grammy Awards, and made it his staple song. There was never a single record released. He died after a battle with cancer.

  • Moon River
    Apr 1962

  • Can't Get Used To Losing You
    Apr 1963

    McGuire Sisters songs Dorothy McGuire, The McGuire Sisters
    February 13, 1928 to September 7, 2012
    In the 1950s, The McGuire Sisters was a female vocal group, with TV show Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts, and recording many songs. Sisters Phyllis, Dorothy and Christine were best known for Sugartime and Sincerely. Dorothy was first to pass away, from natural causes.

  • Sincerely

  • Sugartime
    Feb 1958

  • 17
    Jan 1959

    Joe South songs Joe South
    February 28, 1940 to September 5, 2012
    Joe South wrote songs for many groups and singers, played guitar on many records, and had his own hits such as classic song Games People Play. Joe South died of a heart condition.

  • The Purple People Eater Meets The Witch Doctor
    Jul 1958

  • Games People Play
    Feb 1969

  • Hush
    Dec 1970

    Mark Abrahamian, Starship With Mickey Thomas guitarist
    February 23, 1966 to September 2, 2012
    Mark Abrahamian was with Starship from 2001 to the night he died of a heart attack after a show. He had played professionally with members of AC/DC, Kansas, The Knack, Night Ranger, Quiet Riot, Rainbow, Survivor, Three Dog Night, and many others.

  • We Built This City
    Nov 1985

    Hal David, extraordinary song writer
    May 25, 1921 to September 1, 2012
    Hal David was generally a lyricist who wrote some of the most famous lines of the rock music era. He was best known for his long-time collaboration with Burt Bacharach. He also worked with Sherman Edwards, Albert Hammond, and others.

  • Broken-Hearted Melody
    Sep 1959
    Sarah Vaughan

  • Walk On By
    Jun 1964

    Jan 1970

  • To All The Girls I've Loved Before
    May 1984
    Julio Iglesias & Willie Nelson

    Max Bygraves songs Max Bygraves
    October 16, 1922 to August 31, 2012
    'I wanna tell you a story.' Max Bygraves brought generations of singing, dancing, comedy, and acting to audiences. Max Bygraves lived for a while with Alzheimers Disease.

  • Tulips From Amsterdam
    Jul 1958

    Scott McKenzie songs Scott McKenzie
    January 10, 1939 to August 18, 2012
    Scott McKenzie song San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Flowers In Your Hair) was a theme for the 60's generation. He wrote Kokomo for The Beach Boys. He had Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

    Jul 1967

  • Like An Old Time Movie
    Nov 1967

    No Use For A Name songs Marvin Hamlisch
    June 2, 1944 to August 6, 2012
    Marvin Hamlisch was a top movie score writer and producer. He was most famous for his score in the movie The Sting which produced a top 20 tune. He also co-wrote hit songs for Barbra Streisand, Carly Simon, and others. He died after a "brief illness."

    May 1974

    Oct 1977

    Jimmy Jones songs Jimmy Jones
    June 2, 1930? to August 2, 2012
    Jimmy Jones co-wrote and performed Handy Man, a 1960 number 2 song and a classic redone by many others. He followed-up with Good Timin', which made it up to number 3.

    Feb 1960

  • Good Timin'
    May 1960

    No Use For A Name songs Tony Sly, No Use For A Name, lead singer
    November 4, 1970 to July 31, 2012
    Tony Sly joined No Use For A Name in 1989. The group had a large underground following, playing on stage with top acts. He had recently worked on a solo career. The cause of death was not announced.

  • Dumb Reminders
    Aug 2002

  • Devonshire And Crown
    Oct 2011

    Tony Martin songs Tony Martin
    December 25, 1913 to July 27, 2012
    Although he had already been in movies, Tony Martin had his first big hit in 1938, Now It Can Be Told. His 1950 trademark song There's No Tomorrow was a rewriting of O Sole Mio, which later became It's Now Or Never.
    This is the end of an era. Tony Martin was the last living singer famous in the 1930s. He died of natural causes at 98 years old.

  • Now It Can Be Told


    Orleans songs Larry Hoppen, Orleans, founding member
    January 12, 1951 to July 24, 2012
    Larry Hoppen, far left in album cover picture, was a singer, writer, and guitarist in band Orleans. Larry Hoppen sang all the biggest hits by the 70s dance-rock group. The group had concerts scheduled at the time of death. The cause was not disclosed.

  • Dance With Me
    Oct 1975

  • Still The One
    Oct 1976

    Kitty Wells songs Kitty Wells
    August 30, 1919 to July 16, 2012
    Kitty Wells burst onto the scene in 1952 with It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels, a women's perspective answer song to Hank Thompson, and a huge country hit despite airplay bans. Kitty herself was banned for a time
    from the Grand Old Opry. Kitty Wells became a darling of TV and a major country singer for decades. Her popular song list is well over 100 songs. She died after a stroke.

  • It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels

  • One By One
    Kitty Wells And Red Foley

  • Jealousy
    Jul 1958

    Deep Purple songs Jon Lord, Deep Purple keyboardist
    June 9, 1941 to July 16, 2012
    Jon Lord was the keyboardist for Deep Purple from inception in the 60s to the 90s. He co-wrote some of the most famous progressive band songs. Jon Lord was also a touring member of The Flower Pot Men. He died of cancer.

  • Hush
    Sep 1968

  • Smoke On The Water
    Jul 1973

  • Knocking At Your Back Door
    Feb 1985

    Jimmy Elledge songs Jimmy Elledge
    January 8, 1943 to June 10, 2012
    Jimmy Elledge was a country singer and one hit wonder with the first famous recording of Funny How Time Slips Away , a top 20 near-miss. He followed-up with a string of popular country songs. Jimmy Elledge died after a stroke.

    Jan 1962

    Bob Welch songs Bob Welch
    August 31, 1945 to June 7, 2012
    Bob Welch was a song writer, singer, and guitarist. He was a member of Fleetwood Mac in the early 1970s. Bob Welch was best known for his solo version of Sentimental Lady. Facing health issues, Bob Welch took his own life.

    Dec 1977

  • Precious Love
    Apr 1979

    The Platters songs Herb Reed, The Platters founder
    August 7, 1928 to June 4, 2012
    Herb Reed put the original group The Platters together. He sang bass on all the famous songs by The Platters. In 2011, Herb Reed won the right to the name The Platters. He remained active until he died, apparently from heart disease.

  • Only You (And You Alone)

  • The Great Pretender

  • Twilight Time
    Apr 1958

    Robin Gibb songs Robin Gibb, Bee Gees member
    December 22, 1949 to May 20, 2012
    Robin Gibb was one of the three 'Brothers Gibb' in Bee Gees. Robin Gibb was a major force for writing and singing Bee Gees hit songs, and writing for others. Bee Gees soundtrack double album Saturday Night Fever was one of
    most popular disks of all time. Robin Gibb solo was a US one hit wonder with his remake of The Beatles song Oh Darling. Robin Gibb died of Cancer.

    Aug 1971

    Jan 1978

  • Boys Do Fall In Love
    Jul 1984

    Donna Summer songs Donna Summer
    December 31, 1948 to May 17, 2012
    Donna Summer was known as the 'Queen of Disco.' In 1979, Donna Summer had four number one songs. Donna Summer continued to make popular dance music until shortly before her death from cancer.

  • Last Dance
    Jul 1978

  • She Works Hard For The Money
    Jul 1983

  • To Paris With Love
    Nov 2010

    Chuck Brown songs Chuck Brown and Soul Searchers
    August 22, 1936 to May 16, 2012
    Chuck Brown was a funk and soul writer, singer, and guitarist with his band Soul Searchers. Chuck Brown was most famous for Bustin' Loose, and earlier song, We The People became a soul classic. He died of heart failure.

  • We The People
    Aug 1972

    Beastie Boys songs Adam Yauch, Beastie Boys rapper
    August 5, 1964 to May 4, 2012
    Adam Yauch aka 'MCA' was a founder of Beastie Boys in 1981. Beastie Boys crossed barriers, becoming a superstar rock, rap, hip-hop and punk group. From 2009, he had cancer, but still made an album 2011.

  • (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!)
    Jan 1987

  • Girls
    Jan 1987

  • Intergalactic
    Aug 1998

    Whitney Houston songs Whitney Houston
    August 9, 1963 to February 11, 2012
    Whitney Houston was a pop and soul singer and actress with a long string of number one songs. Her remake of Dolly Parton song I Will Always Love You is the Tunecaster number 10 song of all time. Whitney Houston died from cocaine-induced response.

    May 1986

    Dec 1992

    Related Features for In Memory Of Recently Departed Artists:
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    Bringing The Music

    In 2012, some of the most important music icons -- disk jockeys and programmers -- have moved on. These are people we all should know, as they discovered or made famous life's musical soundtrack.

    Hal Jackson

    November 3, 1914? to May 23, 2012
    Hal Jackson wanted to be on the radio. As a black man in 1939, he had to get white friends to buy time. He slipped in at the last second, and was on the radio from then forward, regularly, until May 2012 -- 73 years. Along the way, he attained so many 'radio firsts.'

    Hal Jackson at WBLS

    Radio Legend And Civil Rights Activist
    Hal Jackson Dies

    Pete Fornatale

    August 23, 1945 to April 26, 2012
    Pete Fornatale was always pushing for more variety and longer form music. He got into radio before the album rock format existed, then helped create it at WNEW-FM. His website will continue.

    Pete Fornatale at WFUV

    Pete Fornatale: 1945-2012,
    WFUV tribute

    Dick Clark

    November 30, 1929 to April 18, 2012
    We lost two living room music masters. First, there was was Dick Clark, host of long-running television show American Bandstand. 'America's oldest teenager' remained a staple of holiday special Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve for many additional years.

    Dick Clark picture

    Don Cornelius

    September 27, 1936 to February 1, 2012
    The mastermind and host of TV program Soul Train brought soul and dance to everyone from 1971 to 1993.