This Day in Death

12.7.12: Spirit Drummer Ed Cassidy – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 7:01 pm December 10, 2012

Band member Randy California, on the left there, holds the distinction of fathering literally every male I’ve ever seen in Wicker Park.


Ed Cassidy, the drummer for 60s jazzy hippie rock-type band Spirit, is dead today at the age of 89. I don’t know much about them, because listening to music is just one mistake away from dancing and I’m trying to go to heaven, thank you very much. However, I did once fly Spirit Airlines nonstop to Denver, so I’m pretty qualified to finish this post.

Jimi Hendrix incorporated Spirit guitar solos into performances and fans took notice of similarities between Led Zeppelin’s“Stairway to Heaven” and Spirit’s “Taurus,” which was released first. When Led Zeppelin played their first gig in the U.S. in 1968, they opened for Spirit.

Despite their quick assent to moderate fame, band members were pursuing independent ventures by the early 1970s. As the musicians reassembled in various configurations over the decades, Cassidy was called “the world’s oldest performing rock ‘n’ roll drummer.” He had long been nicknamed “Mr. Skin” for his bald head.

They’re not kidding there; Cassidy was born in 1923, making him the oldest guy in Spirit by a considerable margin. Seriously, the drummer *and* oldest member? That’s a majorly stacked deck when it comes time to divvy up the groupies. At that point you’re just hoping a couple of 6s sluice past the bassist.

As an aside, if you’re on the internet in 2012 and the name “Mr. Skin” conjures absolutely no Pavlovian response within you, congratulations: You probably have a much healthier sex life than me.


Source: The LA Times

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