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Old 09-08-2003, 07:57 AM   #1
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Warren Zevon 1947-2003

According to wire reports from the Associated Press and others, singer/songwriter Warren Zevon died yesterday, September 7th, at his home in Los Angeles. Zevon, a lifelong smoker until just a few years ago, had inoperable lung cancer and had just released a final album, The Wind, on Artemis Records last month. The album, which features cameos from Bruce Springsteen, Emmylou Harris, Jackson Browne, Ry Cooder, Don Henley and others, is a typically morose outing confronting issues of mortality and regret with Zevon's trademark sense of humor and grace. VH-1 produced a documentary on the making of the album which was aired around the time of its release and will likely be repeated this week. Last October, David Letterman invited Zevon to play on CBS' Late Show as the only guest, devoting an entire hour to Zevon's music and a bittersweet interview.

Zevon's began his career in the late '60s as a session player and composer of advertising jingles. After unsuccessfully attempting to launch a folk career as part of the duo Lyme and Cybelle, a mostly unheard solo album on the One Way label and a brief stint as the Everly Brothers' pianist in the early '70s, Zevon finally landed a record deal at Asylum with the help of his friend Jackson Browne. Zevon's self-titled album, released in 1976, featured a veritable who's-who of radio-friendly L.A. soft-rockers including Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham, Eagles Don Henley and Glenn Frey, J.D. Souther, Beach Boy Carl Wilson, Phil Everly, and even a young Bonnie Raitt. But it was Zevon's follow-up, 1978's Excitable Boy, that yielded the novelty hit "Werewolves of London," which Zevon is best known for. Battles with alcohol and depression made the births of his subsequent early-'80s output difficult.

A newly sober Zevon rebounded in 1987 with Sentimental Hygiene, where he was backed by R.E.M.'s Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and Bill Berry for most of the album, alongside an unusual roster of guests that also included Neil Young, Bob Dylan, George Clinton, Jennifer Warnes, and Flea. Zevon, Buck, Berry, and Mills also formed the side project Hindu Love Gods during the sessions, eventually churning out a self-titled album of swampy blues covers and, bizarrely, a take on Prince's "Raspberry Beret." Zevon's career continued its path-less-taken trajectory through the '90s, yielding bizarro-world collaborations with the likes of Jerry Garcia, Bruce Hornsby, and Letterman's Late Show band, who appear on 2000's prophetically titled Life'll Kill Ya. Last year, Rhino Records released the 22-track best-of collection Genius: The Best of Warren Zevon, which collects most of Zevon's most essential work on a single disc

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Old 09-08-2003, 08:00 AM   #2
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Old 09-08-2003, 08:43 AM   #3
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I've always known of him, but when I saw the VH1 special, I realized what a nice guy he was. I watched it because Bruce was on, and the moments he shared w/ Bruce whan they recorded that song were so sweet. I loved when he said to Bruce after Bruce's blistering guitar solo "It really is you" .

It was great that he lived to finish that CD and see it praised. I've been thinking about getting it, now I hope I can.

RIP Warren
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Old 09-08-2003, 09:03 AM   #4
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Old 09-08-2003, 10:28 AM   #5
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very sad.
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Old 09-08-2003, 10:32 AM   #6
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Old 09-08-2003, 11:04 AM   #7
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Old 09-08-2003, 11:23 AM   #8
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sad indeed
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Old 09-08-2003, 11:27 AM   #9
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RIP and my prayers are with his family!!
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Old 09-08-2003, 11:28 AM   #10
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On a side note, I've loved the song Werewolves of London since I was a kid--a classic.
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Old 09-08-2003, 02:52 PM   #11
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..I've fond memoriers of his music
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Old 09-08-2003, 04:10 PM   #12
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I remember seeing him at the Roxy on Sunset Blvd. in the 70s when he was at the top of his game. Many sat in with him. He beat the Hell out the piano and screemed into the mike. Great show.

A week ago they had an interview with him on NPR he talked about his new CD and passing on. He seemed at peace with his situation.
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Old 09-08-2003, 04:18 PM   #13
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I was a big fan of Warren's. RIP
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Old 09-08-2003, 06:22 PM   #14
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Hearing his version of Knocking on Heaven's Door is so haunting right now.

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Old 09-08-2003, 07:12 PM   #15
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Old 09-08-2003, 10:50 PM   #16
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He wrote one of the best hockey songs ever ("Hit Somebody").

A very sad day for music, and for everyone who loves him.

and you hunger for the time
time to heal, desire, time

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