Dec 28, 2012
The loss of Dave Brubeck this month is just the latest of many jazz musicians we lost in 2012. Among the best known were drummers Pete LaRoca and Lionel Batiste; saxophonists Von Freeman (pictured) and David S. Ware; organist Leon Spencer; trumpeter Ted Curson; and guitarist Pete Cosey. Also noted in passing are Teddy Charles; Ernie Carson; John Levy; Kay Davis; Billy Bean; Jodie Christian; Mike Melvoin; Hal McKusick; Rodgers Grant; Joe Muranyi; Jackie Kelso; Frank Parr; Carrie Smith; Faruq Z. Bey; Abram Wilson; Graeme Bell; and Margie Hyams.
Also, Rune Gustafsson; Fritz Pauer; Lol Coxhill; Byard Lancaster; José Curbelo; Eddie Bert; John Tchicai; Erik Moseholm; Bob French; Frode Thingnæs and Austin Peralta.
Musical figures outside of the jazz world that passed away in 2012 included Andy Williams; Levon Helm of the Band; Donald "Duck" Dunn of Booker T & the M.G.’s; Etta James; Ravi Shankar; Davy Jones of the Monkees; Don Cornelius (Soul Train); Whitney Houston; Dick Clark (American Bandstand); Donna Summer; Michael Davis of the MC5; Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees; Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys;composers Marvin Hamlisch and Hal David; and Mickey Baker.
Ana Marquez-Greene, the daughter of saxophonist Jimmy Greene was one of the twenty children who lost their lives in the senseless tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut.
Those whose lives inspired me in one way or another who passed on include writers Gore Vidal, Nora Ephron, and Maurice Sendack; critic Robert Hughes; self-help guru Stephen Covey; football great Alex Karras; attorney Marvin Miller, first president of the Major League Baseball Players Association; newsman Mike Wallace; and Senator George McGovern.