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Originally posted on 07-17-18: On July 18th, in 1929, Rhythm & Blues singer/songwriter/musician Screamin' Jay Hawkins was born in Cleveland, Ohio. It was rumored that as a little child his mother gave him up because she already had too many children. He went on to teach himself the piano and could read music by age 6. In his teens he became a Golden Gloves Champion in 1943, and developed a love for opera, but never wrote or sang in one. He recorded 'I Put A Spell On You' in 1956, was married 9 times, fathered 30 children and went to jail for 2 years of his life. He is recognized as a pioneer of Rock & Roll and used stage props centered around horror figures and voodoo when he performed. He was temporary blinded by one of his flaming props on stage in 1976. He has a cameo performance and appearance in the film A Rage in Harlem. He died on February 12th, in 2000 at aged 70 after emergency surgery for an aneurysm failed in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France near Paris.
On July 18th, in 1935, composer & lead singer for the Dells, Johnny Funches, was born in Harvey, Illinois (south suburb of Chicago). He would meet his fellow Dells bandmates at Thornton Township High School. The grouped formed in 1953 and started recording for Chess/Cadet Records in 1954 (Muddy Waters & Howlin’ Wolf Labelmates). After the Doo Wop group’s run of hits in the early ‘60’s to Late ‘70’s, Funches left music and became a steel worker. He died on January 23rd, in 1998 at age 62 from emphysema.
On July 18th, in 1988, the infamous Ike Turner, formerly husband of Tina Turner & creator of the Ike Turner Review, was sentenced in Santa Monica, California to one year in jail for possession and transportation of cocaine. The police had previously stopped Turner in August of 1987 for driving erratically. They found about six grams of crack cocaine in his car. Never a man to mince words or shy with his hands, Ike was a determined bandleader that is credited with helping spawn the original Rock & Roll sound.
On July 18th, in 1992, Bobby Brown, former New Edition member and later solo act, married Whitney Houston in New Jersey at Houston’s house. She wore a $40,000 Marc Bouwer wedding gown. Celebrities in attendance included Stevie Wonder, Gloria Estefan, Natalie Cole, Patti LaBelle and Freddie Jackson to name a few. After years of suspected drug abuse, reality show episodes based on her life, and making tabloid headlines, Houston would file for divorce from Brown in September of 2006.
For more information on any musician or event reviewed in posts, or for additional information on The Wandering Eyes Blog overall, use the search bar and search the artist or event using keywords. It’s like a Google search for the site. A wide variety of information, covering several topics exists on this site going back to 2013 when it was created. PEACE