R.I.P. Roky Erickson and Dr. John

Roky Erickson was a pioneering psychedelic rocker who founded the Texas band the 13th Floor Elevators as a teenager. The band had a regional hit song in the Southwest in 1966, “You’re Gonna Miss Me,” which made the lower levels of the national charts. Their debut album, The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators, is a highly influential psychedelic garage rock masterpiece featuring Erickson’s vocal wailing. Erickson struggled with mental illness and spent some time in a mental hospital after an arrest for marijuana possession. He recovered enough later in life to release a couple of albums and perform live with various backing bands, reuniting for a show with the 13th Floor Elevators in 2015.

Died: Friday, May 31, 2019

Details of death: Died at the age of 71.

What they said about him: “Roky came to mean many things to many admirers and will continue to resonate with a legacy of remarkable style, talent, and poetic and artistic tales from beyond,” “It’s almost unfathomable to contemplate a world without Roky Erickson. He created his own musical galaxy and early on was an true inspiration.” —Billy Gibbons from ZZ Top
“Devastated to hear of Roky Erickson's passing. One of the reasons I began singing. A huge inspiration and giant in the history of rock. I used to call him every day in the 80's, he would actually pick up once every couple months and talk horror films with me. Such a loss. RIP.” —Mark Lanegan from Screaming Trees
“Ahh Roky Erickson. So many beautiful songs. Love forever. R.I.P.” —Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers
Dr. John was a legendary New Orleans singer and musician who was known for his lively voodoo themed stage shows where he took on the persona of “the Night Tripper.” Dr. John (born Malcolm Rebennack) combined blues, jazz, rock, pop, and boogie woogie to create his own unique musical style. The flamboyant New Orleans native was an important ambassador for the music of his hometown. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011, introduced by singer John Legend. His best known song is the top twenty hit, “Right Place, Wrong Time,” in 1973,” which was featured in the movie "Dazed and Confused." The guitarist-pianist-singer was an in demand session player who recorded with many artists including Frank Zappa and Van Morrison. He also toured with Ringo Starr’s All Star Band and played in "The Last Waltz," the movie featuring the Band.
Died: Thursday, June 6, 2019. 
Details of death: Died at the age of 77 from cardiac arrest.
On seeing New Orleans struggle after Hurricane Katrina: “We've given the world jazz, our kind of blues, a lot of great food, a lot of great things. It's so confusing to look at things these days.”
What they said about him: “Didn’t he ramble. One of the greatest American originals has passed. Good night, Mac. And know that the legacy of Dr. John will live forever in the streets and music halls of New
Orleans and everywhere else in this world that holds music precious.” – TV producer David Simon who created the HBO show “Treme” about New Orleans.
"God bless Dr. John peace and love to all his family I love the doctor peace and love." - Ringo Starr
"The voodoo magic of Dr. John’s  swampy funk hit me like a hurricane. New  Orleans is one of the vital organs of American music. The irreplaceable, incomparable Dr. John passed away today leaving both a powerful legacy & a blue heart. RIP " - Musician Michael Des Barres
"There was no other performer like Dr. John, and there never will be. Tonight my heart is in New Orleans."- Ellen DeGeneres


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