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Below are brief tributes to some recent losses from across the world of music

David Crosby
David Crosby.jpg

Born: 14 August, 1941

Died: 18 January, 2023

A founder of two separate groups who made the Hall of Fame. He was with The Byrds for their first five albums, but eventually fell out with them - his on-stage performances didn't always endear him to the other Byrds. By the time he left he was a good songwriter, and in 1968 he founded Crosby, Stills and Nash. Their debut album was an instant hit; to tour it they co-opted Neil Young, an they played their second gig at Woodstock, and then made the subliminal Déja Vu. CSNY first split in 1974, but were an on-and-off fixture for the next 40+ years. Crosby kept a simultaneous solo career going despite addiction and jail time. Eventually, he fell out with his erstwhile bandmates - he was never shy about voicing his opinion, as The Doors had found out. But no-one doubted his contribution to the success of two great bands.

Jeff Beck
Jeff Beck.jpg

Born: 24 June, 1944

Died: 10 January, 2023

One of the three great guitarists (with Page and Clapton) who came from a small corner of Surrey, he is probably beyond categorisation - "Jeff Beck" was his category. After getting into R&B and playing with a number of London/Surrey bands, Page (a friend from his teenage years) recommended him to the Yardbirds as Clapton's replacement. They had most of their hits during his short tenure, before he was fired.  A perfectionist, he was never to play again in any major band but his own, and ploughed his own musical furrow, playing everything, with everybody. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame both with The Yardbirds and as a solo artist.

Anita Pointer
Anita Pointer.jpg

Born: 23 January, 1948

Died: 31 December, 2022

With sisters Bonnie and Jean she formed the Pointer Sisters in 1969 (Ruth joined soon after). Their search for originality in both their sound (jazz- and bebop-influenced pop) and appearance (vintage dress) paid off, and their debut albums were hits. The second one featured an unlikely country song, Fairytale, co-written by Anita, which became a hit and led to the sisters being the first Black group to play at the Grand Ol Opry. In the late 70s they became a trio, then a duo and then a trio again. In the first half of the 1980s they modernised their look, and had a string of hits. They continued to record (till 2008) and tour (still going) - line-up changes were usually kept within the family - and they found more success outside the US. Anita retired in 2016 due to ill health. Her death leaves Ruth, the eldest, the only survivor of the fours sisters (an uncanny parallel to the Bee Gees' situation).

Christine McVie
Christine McVie.jpg

Born: 12 July, 1943

Died: 30 November, 2022

A keyboardist with an art school background, she first found fame with Chicken Shack, singing their cover of Etta James's I Would Rather Go Blind. By the time she left Chicken Shack in 1969 she had married John McVie of Fleetwood Mac, the band she joined in 1970 after Peter Green's departure, although she had been involved with them as a session player since their second album. She was often credited with keeping the band together, till it re-discovered success in 1977 with Rumours, the band having re-located to the US in 1974. She stayed with the band till 1998,

when she retired back to England. She came out of retirement in 2014 to rejoin the band, and to make a duets album with Lindsey Buckingham in 2017. The An Evening With Fleetwood Mac world-wide tour of 2018-19 would be her last tour with the band. 

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