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Music Deaths

The Greil Marcus Rock Death Meter returns

Nashville horn icon whose "Yakety Sax" scored many a boobalicious chase scene on Benny Hill.

Sneaky Pete Kleinow, 72, Alzheimer's

PC: 6, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 8

West Coast country-rock titan. Worked with everyone from the Rolling Stones and John Lennon to the Bee Gees and Sly and the Family Stone.

Billy Thorpe, 61, heart attack

PC: 6, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 8

A rock god in his home country of Australia, Thorpe was famous here mainly for the bombastic classic rock anthem "Children of the Sun."

Del Reeves, 74, emphysema

PC: 7, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 9

Country singer and songwriter and former host of TV show Del Reeves' Country Carnival.

Alphonse "Bois Sec" Ardoin, 81, natural causes

PC: 7, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 9

Creole singer and accordionist of zydeco forerunner "la-la music."

Casey Calvert, 26, prescription drug interaction.

PC: 3, FC: 4, M: 3 Total: 10

Guitarist in emo-punk band Hawthorne Heights.

Denny Doherty, 66, abdominal aneurysm

PC: 8, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 10

The last of the two Papas from the Mamas and the Papas; member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Hank Thompson, 82, lung cancer

PC: 8, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 10

Princeton-educated Country Music Hall of Fame member and swinging honky-tonker from Waco. His "The Wild Side of Life" dominated the country charts in 1952.

Bobby Byrd, 73, natural causes

PC: 7, FC: 2, M: 1 Total: 10

Famous Flame best remembered for backing vocals on James Brown songs like "Licking Stick," "Make It Funky," "Get Into It, Get Involved."

Lee Hazlewood, 78, renal cancer

PC: 9, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 11

Atmospheric singer-songwriter and producer; wrote Art Bell fave "Some Velvet Morning," "These Boots Are Made For Walking" and the Dean Martin hit "Houston." Varied list of interpreters includes Lydia Lunch, Einsturzende Neubauten, Calexico, Primal Scream, Nick Cave, Harry Nilsson and Megadeth.

Karlheinz Stockhausen, 79, natural causes

PC: 10, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 12

Composer, pianist and electronic music pioneer whose influence cut across rock, classical, avant-garde and jazz. Pictured on cover of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Max Roach, 83, Alzheimer's Disease

PC: 10, FC: 1, M: 1 Total: 12

Jazz drummer extraordinaire.

Tony Wilson, 57, cancer-related heart attack

PC: 8, FC: 4, M: 1 Total: 13

English impresario whose Manchester institutions the Hacienda Club and Factory Records label were instrumental in the careers of Joy Division and Happy Mondays. A dedicated believer in regionalism, Wilson could be described as "the Rory Miggins of Manchester."

Porter Wagoner, 80, lung cancer

PC: 9, FC: 3, M: 1 Total: 13

Pompadoured country crooner who rocked glittering Nudie suits like none before or since. The former husband and frequent duet partner of Dolly Parton and Grand Ole Opry stalwart saw something of a critical renaissance this year with the release of Anti album The Wagonmaster.

Jimmy T-99 Nelson, 88, natural causes

PC: 8, FC: 4*, M: 1 Total: 13

Local Big Joe Turner sound-alike and criminally underrated songwriting genius. Scored national R&B hits in the '50s with "T-99 Blues" and "Meet Me with Your Black Dress On"; after a couple of decades' retirement, released three strong albums in the last ten years with remnants of Roomful of Blues.

*Based on good chance that Nelson's songwriting gift is rediscovered.

Kevin DuBrow, 52, cocaine overdose

PC: 2, FC: 2 , M: 9 Total: 13

Iron-voiced, zebra-stripe-pantsed frontman for Slade clones Quiet Riot, which had mid-'80s hits with "Cum On Feel The Noize," "Mama Weer All Crazee Now" and "Metal Health (Bang Your Head)."

Ike Turner, 75, natural causes

PC: 10, FC: 3, M: 1 Total: 14

Mississippi Delta-bred hipcat who helped invent rock and roll and stayed current through several eras thereafter. Married, produced and (allegedly) abused Tina Turner. Member of both the rock and blues halls of fame.

Big Moe, 33, heart attack

PC: 7, FC: 3, M: 4* Total: 14

Bluesy Third Ward rapper-singer; often sang about codeine. Scored R&B hits with "Just a Dog," "Purple Stuff" and "Mann!"

*Heart attack brought on by morbid obesity; obesity brought on by heavy consumption of syrup.

Kirk Rundstrom, 38, esophageal cancer

PC: 6, FC: 7, M: 3* Total: 16

Singer-guitarist in Kansas alt-country roots-rock band Split Lip Rayfield.

*Extra points awarded for type of cancer; esophageal cancer often comes from rock vices like drinking and smoking.

Buck Jones, 33, hit by car on freeway

PC: 5, FC: 8, M: 5 Total: 18

Young Texas country singer with bright future run over by drunk driver after van breakdown on Texas Highway 30.

Chad Butler, a.k.a. Pimp C, 33, died in sleep in Hollywood hotel

PC: 9, FC: 9, M: 5* Total: 23*

UGK rapper and producer; primary architect of Dirty South hip-hop. In Texas, the most grieved musician since Selena.

*Toxicology report pending.

john.lomax@houstonpress.com

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