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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Default Billy Preston passed away

    Singer/Songwriter Billy Preston Dies
    The keyboard player performed with The Beatles, Rolling Stones and Sly & The Family Stone.
    Tuesday, June 6, 2006
    By Stephanie Cole

    Famous keyboard player Billy Preston, who was also known as the "Fifth Beatle," has died at the age of 59.

    According to online reports, the singer/songwriter died at a Scottsdale, Arizona hospital after suffering from a long illness.

    Preston was known as the "Fifth Beatle" because he performed on their 'Abbey Road', 'Let it Be' and 'White' albums. He also toured and recorded with The Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and Sly & The Family Stone.

    The rock legend recently worked with the Red Hot Chili Peppers on their new album 'Stadium Arcadium.' He played the clavinet on the song "Warlocks."

    Billy Preston's Biography

    Billy Preston's career has spanned five decades, starting as a child prodigy playing the movie role of young W.C. Handy and then playing organ for the likes of Ray Charles and Little Richard. His accomplishments are highlighted by a string of hits, including collaborating with some of the most celebrated names in the music industry, The Rolling Stones, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, The Jackson Five, Sly and the Family Stone, Barbara Streisand, Sammy Davis Jr., Quincy Jones and perhaps the most famous of all, The Beatles.

    Billy's relationship with The Beatles led to his signing with Apple Records in the 60's. Billy is widely acknowledged as the "Fifth Beatle" having been the only party to ever have his name included in the label credits of the "Let It Be" and the "Abbey Road" albums as well as the landmark "White Album". Billy also appeared with them in the films "The Complete Beatles" and "Let It Be" as well as performing as part of them during their historic rooftop final concert.

    In the late '60s Billy worked with John Lennon and Yoko Ono on their solo "Plastic Ono Band" album as well as Ringo Starr's solo single "Oh My My" and he participated in George Harrison's American Tour. In addition Billy Preston was a leading character in the movie "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" also featuring Peter Frampton and the Bee Gees, performing a stunning version of "Get Back".

    Preston's name and fame were solidified as a solo artist when he scored a string of Number 1 hit singles including the Grammy winning "Outta Space", "Will It Go Round In Circles", "Nothing From Nothing" and "Space Race".

    A prolific writer, Billy Preston penned the multi-platinum standard "You Are So Beautiful" which was performed by his friend Joe Cocker. He also wrote the title songs for a series of box office champions including "Never Gonna Say Goodbye" "Fast Break" and "O'Hara's Wide". The title song from "Fast Break" became a Preston classic hit when performed as a duet with the late Syreeta Wright. Billy also co-wrote the score for the Sidney Poitier movie "They Call Me Mr. Tibbs" with Quincy Jones.

    In recent years Billy Preston was the first black musical director of a late night television show "Nightlife" starring David Brenner, was a regular on the UPN series "Good News" and he made a cameo appearance in "Blues Brothers 2000" as part of the super group that included Eric Clapton and Stevie Winwood and B.B. King among others. Billy's participation in the tribute concert "Concert for George Harrison" at Royal Albert Hall and his performance of "My Sweet Lord" has received critical acclaim.

    Billy recorded on the last album his mentor Ray Charles was to record, toured with The Funk Brothers and Stevie Winwood in Europe in early 2004 and then hit the road, touring extensively and garnering rave reviews for his performances with his dear friend Eric Clapton through Europe and North America. Billy's keyboard dominance was highlighted with the release of the "Let It Be--Naked" album issue.

    With his extensive touring and studio involvement Billy Preston has found the time to create special project tribute to his dear friends The Beatles. He's even penned two new songs, one in tribute to George Harrison and another to all four of the fab fellows, "John, Paul, George and Ringo". This project along with a historic DVD companion is due for a fall 2004 release with special appearances and bonuses for Beatles fans.


    http://www.billypreston.net/
    Last edited by voivod; 06.06.06 at 09:01 AM.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  2. #2
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    Default

    Damn. Rest in Peace, Billy P.

  3. #3
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    Damn. Somewhere I have a very strange video from the old show "Midnight Special" that features Preston playing with the Jeff Beck Group. They played four tunes, including "Cause We've Ended As Lovers" and (I think) "Will It Go 'Round In Circles".

    It was all messed up and out of sync, but masterful nonetheless. The work he did with Clapton around 2001 was equally fantastic.

    R.I.P., dude.
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
    George Bernard Shaw

  4. #4
    Good Enough DreamIsOver's Avatar
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    Terrible news. It's amazing to read all the things he was involved in. Hopefully his spirits were lifted a little the last few weeks appearing on a chart topping album again. I remember watching the David Brenner talk show in 1987 when Clapton was a musical guest. Billy sat in with Clapton when he performed Miss You that totally blew away the album version on August. I wish I still had that on tape.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk smithjc's Avatar
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    That is so sad. I loved the Concert For George. He sang My Sweet Lord, among others. Great show btw.

    RIP.
    RIP - Classic Van Halen

    "A lot of people take Van Halen more seriously than we do." The Diamond One



  6. #6
    Atomic Punk LLFHS's Avatar
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    Fer god's sake.....honor the man and move this to MUSIC only. The thought of a goddamn Kelly Clarkson thread over there is bad enough.
    LowLifeFlatHeadScum

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    Your Hacked Nude Photo Here!

  7. #7
    Hang 'Em High janthraxx's Avatar
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    What a bummer. I loved his work on Goat's Head Soup, among others.

    Enjoy the afterlife, Billy. You know he's up there dueling with Ian Stewart
    "Suck a fat one, faggot."
    -MikeL, showing off that sharp wit of his.

    "You may recognize some of these chemicals. Let's start with cyanide...The one the Aum Shinrikyo cult attempted to use to commit mass murder in a Tokyo subway in May 1995...The same cyanide produced routinely--1.4 million tons per year--for use in the production of plastics, adhesives, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and so on. It seems that those who put small amounts of cyanide in subways are terrorists. But those who produce it in mass quantities and contaminate broad reaches of soil, water, and air, killing countless living beings, are not terrorists, but rather capitalists, and are counted among the finest and most powerful people on the planet."

    -Derrick Jensen, "What We Leave Behind"

    "You know what's weird to me is Christians who are against the death penalty. After all, if it weren't for the death penalty, we wouldn't celebrate Easter!"

    -the late, great, Bill Hicks

 

 

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