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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Singer John Stewart dead at 68

John Stewart has died today at the age of 68. The folk singer suffered suffered a massive stroke or brain aneurysm early Friday morning in San Diego. Doctors had determined that any difficult surgical remedies that might have been employed to save his life- even if successful - would have left him immobile and unable to speak. He departed this world from the same hospital that he was born in on September 5th, 1939.

Stewart spent a lifetime writing and recording songs that chronicle the unique people and culture that is America. At age nineteen, John recorded an album for Roulette Records with his first folk group, The Cumberland Three and had several of his songs recorded by The Kingston Trio, whom he later joined. The group released sixteen albums which included the hits "Where Have All The Flowers Gone", "The Reverend Mr. Black" and "Greenback Dollar". As a member of the Trio, he also composed many of the group's recordings including Road To Freedom and One More Town.

John set out on his own in 1968 and established a world following based on over 25 solo releases. His Nashville recorded LP, California Bloodlines was chosen by Rolling Stone as one of the 200 best albums of all times. His music has been at the center of many of the most dramatic and vital episodes of the times.

While America answered John Kennedy's challenge, NASA asked John to score a film depicting his country's historic quest to reach the moon.

When black Americans intensified their struggle for racial equality, John was in Selma, Alabama and was inspired to write and record songs about the Freedom marches and his experience.

When Robert Kennedy staged his last campaign in 1968, John and his music were with Kennedy and his message of hope for America.

When a nation needed to smile and sing, The Monkees re-recorded John's song Daydream Believer which sold 5 million copies in 1968. (Anne Murray's own hit version sold another 2 million in 1980.)

John had his biggest commercial success at the beginning of the '80s with his top ten RSO album Bombs Away Dream Babies, which included the hits "Gold" (which reached #5), "Midnight Wind" and "Lost Her in the Sun".



"Gold"



When the lights go down in the California town
People are in for the evening
I jump into my car and I throw in my guitar
My heart's beating time with my breathing
Driving over Kanan, singing to my soul
There's people out there turning music into gold

Oh, my buddy Tim Bass he's working pumping gas
And he makes two fifty for an hour
He's got rhythm in his hands as he's tapping on the cans
Sings rock and roll in the shower
Driving over Kanan, singing to my soul
There's people out there turning music into gold

Oh California girls are the greatest in the world
Each one a song in the making
Singing right to me, I can hear the melody
The story is there for the taking
Driving over Kanan, singing to my soul
There's people out there turning music into gold

Driving over Kanan, singing to my soul
There's people out there turning music into gold

When the lights go down in the California town
People are in for the evening
I jump into my car and I throw in my guitar
My heart's beating time with my breathing
Driving over Kanan, singing to my soul
There's people out there turning music into gold

Driving over Kanan, singing to my soul
There's people out there turning music into gold
People out there turning music into gold
People out there turning music into gold

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4 Comments:

Blogger Mary Ellen said...

Wow...another loss! So sad.

title="comment permalink">January 19, 2008 10:25 PM  
Blogger John Good said...

I've searched for video of that song for over a year. First time I found it was tonight - how fitting.

title="comment permalink">January 19, 2008 11:55 PM  
Blogger Robert Rouse said...

I always found it ironic that Stewart finally hit gold with Gold. At a time when Fleetwood Mac was topping the charts Stewart reaches the top with a song that sounded as if it could've been recorded by Fleetwood Mac (of course, it helped having Buckingham and Nicks on that track with him). Stewart also had a lot to do with Linda Ronstadt's success and she later returned the favor by helping him out on his later albums. I always loved Stewart's stuff. A side note - I wonder how man people who heard this reported on television or radio are going to be surprised to see Jon Stewart on the Oscar telecast.

title="comment permalink">February 23, 2008 3:56 PM  
Blogger ~Holliday Lillies~ said...

This man had style!!!!!!!

title="comment permalink">June 17, 2011 6:34 AM  

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