Fourteen time Grammy winning record producer Phil Ramone passed away in New York today, March 30th, 2013. The cause of death has not yet been disclosed. Ramone was 72 years old (though I have seen two sources cite his age as 79, not sure where that is coming from as his year of birth is given as 1941). A brief list of artists Ramone worked with includes Burt Bacharach, Bono, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Quincy Jones, Madonna, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, Frank Sinatra and Stevie Wonder. CNN has more information and celebrity remembrances in a nice obit at This Link. RIP, Phil!
Julie Taymor is an extremely literal-minded director. That much is in evidence if you’ve seen the film Across the Universe, a Taymor-directed 2006 release in which she visually interpreted, word-for-word, a cache of The Beatles’ most popular songs in order to tell the most simple-minded love story imaginable.
Sid Vicious, (born John Simon Ritchie), bassist for the Sex Pistols and infamous pop culture icon, would have celebrated his Birthday today, if he had not died in 1979. May 10th is also the Birthday of Sixties Pop Guru, Donovan (born in 1946) and some guy named Paul Hewson (born in 1960), who sings and pontificates for the band U2. Happy Birthday, guys!
I just read an excellent article on U2’s Bono in Harp Magazine in which journalist Mark Kemp takes on the superstar rock vocalist and humanitarian of questionable motivation.
My favorite revelation:
“While Bono has self-righteously badgered world leaders into using citizens’ tax money to fund debt-relief efforts (a perfectly good and noble cause), he and his band have taken aggressive measures to avoid paying taxes themselves. Around the same time (Paul) Hewson hooked up with Forbes, U2 decided to move part of its multi-million-dollar business from its home base of Ireland to the Netherlands, where the tax rate on royalty earnings is minimal.”
Gee wiz, that a hypocritical poser.