In Rememberance – Noted Passings of the Last Two Weeks
David Carradine, Farrah Fawcett, Micheal Jackson, and Karl Malden will be well-remembered throughout the world. Each of them have contributed to Popular Culture with some films (and for Jackson, albums and hit singles) that are now parts of History.
I would like to take notice of other recent passings of those who contributed to the Film world who are a part of, or of interest to, this scene. These occurred within the last two weeks. The Scene will post more passings through 2009 in future posts.
Sky Saxon, born Richard Marsh, was the Lead Singer and Bassist of one the most remembered Garage Punk bands of The 60’s, The Seeds. He passed away on the same day as Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett, Jun. 25. Besides the hit “Pushin’ Too Hard,” The Seeds are also remembered for singles including “Can’t Seem to Make You Mine,” “Mr. Farmer” (From their second album, A Web of Sound), “The Wind Blows Your Hair” (Covered by The Damned under their alias Naz Nomad and the Nightmares. Their side-project also had a song called “Just Call Me Sky”), “A Thousand Shadows” (From the 1967 LP Future), and the storming “Satisfy You” (From Live at Merlin’s Music Box, 1968). His music adventures continued through the years leading many bands, calling himself Sky Sunlight Saxon, and joining the Source Family commune, where he contributed to it’s musical activities (A 13-CD set of recordings was compiled by Saxon and the Captain Trip label in Japan), while a reunion of The Seeds happened for a tour in 1989 with the name being used by him with other musicians on occasions after that including his final album, Back to the Garden. The Seeds appeared in one of the most important Hippie Exploitation films, Psych Out, Directed by Richard Rush (The song used was “Two Fingers Pointing At You,” from the Future album), while Saxon alone was in the 1984 flick Desperate Teenage Lovedolls and the 1966 legend The Big TNT Show, filmed November 29, 1965, in a cameo as a member of the audience holding Petula Clark’s hand in a brief moment. The Smashing Pumpkins video to “Superchrist” also featured an appearance by Saxon.
Spyros Kalogyrou is more known in Greece, but he did make an appearance in a 1966 film that made it to the 42’nd Street scene back in 1968 – Stephania, something of a WIP film starring Zoe Laskari. Something Weird Video fans will remember the dramatic trailer for the Finos Films movie that was Distributed in the States by Chancellor Films. Kalogyrou’s acting career was long-standing in Greece. He passed away Jun. 27’th.
Steve Race was a British music composer (Mainly for British TV) who’s had some of his work wound up in some stock music libraries. His composition “Dry Throat” wound up in Ed Wood’s legendary Plan 9 from Outer Space – It was uncredited, but is now noticed by Film Historians. He passed away on June 22.
Jamie R. Diaz’s professional work in Animation started off with the final days of the Warner Brothers cartoons in 1968-69. He went on to work for many cartoon series including Hong Kong Phooey (Layout Artist) and Chuck Norris: Karate Commandos (Character Design). Among his other best known work was being the Sheet Timer for Rugrats, including The Movie (as Animation Timer) with music by Devo’s Mark Mothersbaugh. Diaz passed away Jun. 20.
Joe Christ was an Underground film maker who’s titles included Speed Freaks With Guns (1991) and That’s Just Wrong (2005). He passed away Jun. 20.
Wim Kouwenhoven appeared in many films in The Netherlands though the years, but was seen in The States mainly through one film, Paul Verhoeven’s Diary of a Hooker. He also passed away Jun. 20.
Rest In Peace.