The incomparably rhythmic bass player Donald "Duck" Dunn, who was the soul of Booker T's rhythm section and the heart of the Blues Brothers' band, is dead. He died on tour with Steve "The Colonel" Cropper, also of the Blues Brothers, in Japan. He was 70.
His friend and fellow musician Steve Cropper, who was on the same tour, said Dunn had died in his sleep.
"Today I lost my best friend," Cropper wrote on his Facebook page. "The World has lost the best guy and bass player to ever live".
Miho Harasawa, a spokeswoman for Tokyo Blue Note, the last venue Dunn played, confirmed he died alone early Sunday. She had no further details.
Booker T bassist Donald Dunn dies in Tokyo aged 70
DeviantArt's ~AgarthanGuide created this Maurice Sendak/Avengers mashup: "Two things on my mind today: RIP Maurice Sendak. Yay Avengers. Okay- I put together some wallpapers using the original- I tried to make them as big as possible and cover the major aspect ratios. You can download them here. Enjoy!"
Avengers on Parade (RIP Maurice Sendak)
(via Super Punch)
"Childhood is cannibals and psychotics vomiting in your mouth!" Art Spiegelman drew his experience of hanging out with Maurice Sendak in 1993 for the New Yorker, and the magazine has "unlocked" the archival link in honor of Sendak's passing today.
(via Neil Gaiman)
Beloved children's author Maurice Sendak, creator of Where the Wild Things Are, is dead at 83. Here's some of what The Guardian's Michelle Pauli has to say about him.
The wild things of Max's imagination were based on Sendak's own relatives. He was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Polish Jewish immigrant parents and was aware, in his early teens, of the death of much of his extended family in the Holocaust. The terrors of his childhood specifically, and childhood more generally, flow through his work. "I refuse to lie to children," he said in an interview with the Guardian last year. "I refuse to cater to the bullshit of innocence."
Sendak also said that the term "children's illustrator" annoyed him, since it seems to belittle his talent. "I have to accept my role. I will never kill myself like Vincent Van Gogh. Nor will I paint beautiful water lilies like Monet. I can't do that. I'm in the idiot role of being a kiddie book person," he said.
"I refuse to lie to children," is probably the best kids'-author manifesto statement ever.
Maurice Sendak, father of the Wild Things, dies at 83
(Image: Wild Things, a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike (2.0) image from maxbraun's photostream)
Jean Giraud, the comics artist who worked under the name Moebius, has died at the age of 73. Moebius defined the style of Metal Hurlant/Heavy Metal, a surreal, madcap, sometimes grotesque science fictional visual style that is often imitated but which Moebius himself produced to high spec and in such great amounts. On Tor.com, art director Irene Gallo remembers him: "He was a particular favorite among his fellow artists. Many creatives and readers will mourn his passing." Neil Gaiman also has words on his passing:
I couldn’t actually figure out what the Moebius stories were about, but I figured that was because my French wasn’t up to it. (I could get the gist of the Richard Corben Den story, and loved that too, and not just because of the nakedness, but the Moebius stories were obviously so much deeper.)
I read the magazine over and over and envied the French because they had everything I dreamed of in comics - beautifully drawn, visionary and literate comics, for adults. I just wished my French was better, so I could understand the stories (which I knew would be amazing).
I wanted to make comics like that when I grew up.
I finally read the Moebius stories in that Metal Hurlant when I was in my 20s, in translation, and discovered that they weren’t actually brilliant stories. More like stream-of-consciousness art meets Ionesco absurdism. The literary depth and brilliance of the stories had all been in my head. Didn’t matter. The damage had long since been done.
I recently reviewed The Incal, Moebius and Jodorowsky's bizarre, classic, lately reprinted science fiction comic.
One of the greats of science fiction and fantasy literature, Anne McCaffrey, is reported to have died
. She will be missed. Our condolences to Todd McCaffrey and the rest of her family.
In this week's Observer
, a heartfelt obituary from John Naughton for Michael S Hart, founder of the Gutenberg Project, and inventor of ebooks:
Those who knew him testify that Michael Hart was an extraordinary individual – idiosyncratic, original, humane, determined and generous to a fault. He never made much money, repaired his own car, had scant faith in medicine and built most of his own electronic gear from stuff he picked up in garage sales. On Saturday mornings over breakfast in the local diner, he would work out the optimum route to cover the maximum number of garage sales that day; it was his version of the travelling salesman problem in mathematics.
So farewell Michael Hart, the genius who freed up literature
In his obituary of Hart, his colleague Gregory Newby described him as an "unreasonable" man, in George Bernard Shaw's celebrated use of the term. "Reasonable people," wrote Shaw, "adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress, therefore, depends on unreasonable people."
(Image: Brewster Kahle)
As Mark posted yesterday
, Project Gutenberg founder Michael S. Hart, who invented ebooks when he keyed in the text of the Declaration of Independence in 1971, has died. He was 64. He was a copyfighter and a hero of the Internet revolution. Michael honored me by including my books in the Gutenberg archive, and was a challenging and invigorating correspondent.
Michael S. Hart left a major mark on the world. The invention of eBooks was not simply a technological innovation or precursor to the modern information environment. A more correct understanding is that eBooks are an efficient and effective way of unlimited free distribution of literature. Access to eBooks can thus provide opportunity for increased literacy. Literacy, and the ideas contained in literature, creates opportunity.
E-book pioneer Michael Hart dies
In July 2011, Michael wrote these words, which summarize his goals and his lasting legacy: “One thing about eBooks that most people haven't thought much is that eBooks are the very first thing that we're all able to have as much as we want other than air. Think about that for a moment and you realize we are in the right job." He had this advice for those seeking to make literature available to all people, especially children:
"Learning is its own reward. Nothing I can
say is better than that."
Michael is remembered as a dear friend, who sacrificed personal luxury to fight for literacy, and for preservation of public domain rights and resources, towards the greater good.
(Image: The Outlaw Michael Hart, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from benchilada's photostream)
RIP, Jack Layton, former Toronto councillor and present head of Canada's New Democratic Party. He was as good a politician as Canada ever had, and better than anyone who's been on any of the ballots I've been allowed to tick for many, many years. Layton died from
cancer; he announced his prostate cancer
diagnosis in February 2010, and stepped down in July. He was 61.
Layton died at his home in Toronto early on Monday surrounded by his wife and children, his family said in a statement.
Jack Layton, Canadian opposition leader, dies aged 61
His left-leaning New Democratic Party (NDP) surged to become the official opposition for the first time in May's elections.
(Image: Jack Layton, Leaders Tour - Tournée du Chef - Jack Layton, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from mattjiggins's photostream)
David sez, "Paul Meier, who had an extraordinarily high impact/fame ratio, passed away this weekend. Meier is probably best known for the introduction of randomized trials into the evaluation of medical treatments, though his creation of the Kaplan-Meier Estimator likely had as much of an impact due to its importance in all things actuarial."
As early as the mid-1950s, Dr. Meier was one of the first and most vocal proponents of what is called “randomization.”
Paul Meier, Statistician Who Revolutionized Medical Trials, Dies at 87
Under the protocol, researchers randomly assign one group of patients to receive an experimental treatment and another to receive the standard treatment. In that way, the researchers try to avoid unintentionally skewing the results by choosing, for example, the healthier or younger patients to receive the new treatment.
(Thanks, David (dr at BB)