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Obituaries: Buddy Harman, Pervis Jackson, LeRoi Moore and more

Obituaries for drummer Buddy Harman, The Spinners bass singer Pervis Jackson, saxophonist LeRoi Moore, peace activist and radio station founder Abie Nathan, singer Ralph Young and composer and singer Dorival Caymmi.

Buddy Harman, one of the most-recorded drummers on the Nashville, Tenn., music scene, died Aug. 19, 2008. He was 79.

Harmon played drums on more than 18,000 recordings, including Roy Orbison’s “Pretty Woman,” Patsy Cline’s “Crazy,” Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire,” Tammy Wynette’s “Stand By Your Man” and Elvis Presley’s “Little Sister.”

He was an early staff drummer on the Grand Ole Opry and among the first prominent drummers in country music history.


Pervis Jackson, the man behind the deep, rolling bass voice in a string of 1970s R&B hits by The Spinners, died Aug. 18, 2008, in Detroit. He was 70.

Jackson had been diagnosed with brain and liver cancer, his wife, Claudreen Jackson, said.

A New Orleans native, he was one of the original five members of the group that started out in the late 1950s singing doo-wop in Detroit. They worked under the Motown label in the 1960s but shot to stardom after moving on to Atlantic Records in the 1970s.

Jackson last performed July 19, 2008, in California with the remaining original members of the group, Bobbie Smith and Henry Fambrough, and two new members, his wife said.

With songs like “Mighty Love,” ”I’ll Be Around,” “One Of A Kind (Love Affair)” and “Then Came You,” The Spinners were a constant on the R&B and pop charts during the 1970s. The Spinners compiled 12 gold records, according to the group’s official Web site.


Dave Matthews Band founding member and saxophone player LeRoi Moore died Aug. 19, 2008, at a Los Angeles hospital from complications stemming from injuries he suffered in an all-terrain vehicle accident in June. He was 46.

Moore initially was hospitalized after the accident in late June occurred near Charlottesville, Va. He was discharged and had returned to his Los Angeles home to begin physical rehabilitation when complications forced him back to the hospital on July 17.

Moore liked to wear his trademark dark sunglasses at the band’s live concerts. He was classically trained but said jazz was his main musical influence, according to a biography on the band’s Web site.

Lead singer Dave Matthews credited Moore with arranging many of the band’s songs. The band formed in 1991 in Charlottesville, Va., when Matthews was working as a bartender. He gave a demo tape of his songs to Moore, who liked what he heard and recruited his friend and fellow jazzman Carter Beauford to play drums, along with other musicians.

The group broke out of the local music scene with the album Under the Table and Dreaming and won a Grammy Award in 1997 for the song “So Much to Say.”


Abie Nathan, a peace activist who made a dramatic solo flight to Egypt in a rattletrap single-engine plane and later founded the groundbreaking “Voice of Peace’’ radio station, died Aug. 27, 2008, at a Tel Aviv, Israel, hospital. He was 81.

Nathan ran for parliament in 1965 on a promise to fly his private plane to Cairo and talk peace with the Egyptian president at the time, Gamal Abdel Nasser. The voters rejected him, but he flew there anyway. After several fruitless flights, he bought a freighter, which he anchored off the coast of Tel Aviv and turned into a pirate radio station, “The Voice of Peace.’’

The station offered a mix of pop songs and peace messages and was popular with youths over the next 20 years. After the Israeli parliament signed an interim pea