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Alex Chilton, Memphis Pop-Rock Legend, Dies at Age 59


Alex Chilton was only 16 when the song “The Letter” by the Box Tops with him singing lead went to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967. It was followed by a #2 hit “Cry Like a Baby” and five other top 40 singles. However, by 1970 the Box Tops were no more. While further commercial success was elusive, it is Alex Chilton’s work as a leader of the power pop group Big Star in the 1970’s that is possibly even more enduring. Big Star formed in Memphis in 1971 and the group released three studio albums,#1 RecordRadio City and Third. None scored any significant commercial success, but Rolling Stone listed all three as among the top 500 albums of all time. Bands such as R.E.M., the Replacements, and the Bangles have all cited Big Star as major influences. Big Star got back together in 1993 and eventually released a fourth studio album, In Space, in 2005. Yesterday Alex Chilton died suddenly of a suspected heart attack. Big Star were scheduled to perform in Austin, Texas as part of the South By Southwest music festival this Saturday.


March 23, 2010 - Posted by | 1

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