Saturday, 29 December 2012

THOSE WE HAVE LOST: Ray Collins (1936-2012)

Ray Collins, singer-guitarist and co-founder of The Mothers Of Invention, died Monday (24 December) in Ponoma, California, after being admitted to the hospital on 18 December for cardiac arrest. He was 76 years old. Collins' musical career began in Ponoma, where he sang in various doo wop and R&B groups. In the early '60s, he fronted a cover band called The Soul Giants. Following a dispute with the group's guitarist, Collins sought a replacement and remembered a young musician that he had met some years earlier: Frank Zappa. Zappa quickly became the guiding musical force of The Soul Giants. The band changed their name to The Mothers Of Invention and ditched cover tunes in favor of Zappa's original compositions, a innovative mix of free-form rock, jazz and classical, with satirical lyrics that praised non-conformity.

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