Nearly all of us grew up listening to the radio in our area. It's where most of us formed our musical tastes and acted as background to our life memories. I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, and as a result, i listened to among other stations, KPFA, the Berkeley community radio station quite a bit growing up. One of its radio show hosts, Bandleader and R&B pioneer, Johnny Otis, passed away this year. Only 3 days later, one of his discoveries, Etta James, also passed away.
Herb Reed, founding member of The Platters, where he was the longest running member of the group and creator of the band's name, died this year.
Bob Babbitt never became a household name, neither did his band, The Funk Brothers, but they were the music behind the hits as Motown Records studio band.
Donald "Duck" Dunn was best known to younger audiences as a member of the "Blues Brothers" band. However, to people older than 30, he was justly famous not only for being a member of Booker T & The MG's, he was also a session musician at the legendary Stax Records out of his native Memphis.
All five had a profound influence on popular music. They had a profound influence on my musical knowledge and taste. Tell us who passed away this year who had a musical impact on your life and why.
unfortunately, KPFA doesn't have his old radio show archived, but i did manage to find a snippet on you tube from 1999.
Etta James (with Dr John) I'd Rather Be Blind 1987
The Platters -The Great Pretender (live 1955)
Excellent film on the Funk Brothers, Standing In The Shadows of Motown
Booker T & The MG's - Green Onions