3 Tragic Rockstar Deaths In 1970
The 1970s began with the break up of The Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel. But the year also claimed the lives of several rockstars. Here, we’re taking a look at the tragic deaths in 1970:
Born Louis Thomas Watts, Kid Thomas first started playing the blues but later on switched to rock ‘n roll. In the 1950s, he played alongside blues greats like Muddy Waters, Elmore James and Bo Diddley. Most of his early material were either unsuccessful or largely ignored. By the 1960s, commercial success still eluded him so during the later part of the decade, he made ends meet by working as a lawn mowing man. In September 1969, he was driving his truck when he accidentally struck and killed a young boy. He was arrested and charged with manslaughter but the case was dismissed because of lack of evidence.
Little did Thomas know that the boy’s father waited for him outside the courthouse to shoot him. He died on April 5, 1970 at UCLA Medical Center.
Alan Wilson was the leader, founding member, and primary composer of Canned Heat. On September 3, 1970, he was found dead near his bandmate’s home. The official cause of death was listed as accidental acute barbiturate intoxication. However, he suffered from depression and reportedly attempted to commit suicide months before. He was 27 years old.
Even with a short-lived career, Jimi Hendrix became one of the greatest and most influential guitarists of all time. But on September 18, 1970, he died at the age of 27. The year wasn’t kind to him, he was no longer in top form and his health worsened days before his death. He was suffering from lack of sleep and fatigue brought about by too much work. It was his then-girlfriend Monika Dannemann who found him unresponsive. Hendrix was then rushed to St Mary Abbot’s Hospital but was pronounced dead less than two hours later.
According to the result of the post-mortem examination, Hendrix aspirated on his own vomit and therefore died of asphyxia while he was intoxicated with barbiturates.