Alex Chilton Dead at 59

Posted by Whitmore, March 17, 2010 11:30pm | Post a Comment

Alex Chilton (December 28, 1950 - March 17, 2010).
Legendary music icon known for his work in the 1960’s with the chart topping Box Tops and his ground breaking band Big Star is dead from an apparent heart attack in a New Orleans hospital. He was 59.

As a 16 year old singer for the pop-soul outfit the Box Tops, Chilton topped the charts with the band's song “The Letter” in 1967. Their other hits included “Cry Like a Baby,” and “Neon Rainbow.”

But his work with Big Star is what legends are made of; though mainstream success eluded the band in their time, their influence has been felt for nearly forty years. Big Star's three 1970s albums all earned spots on Rolling Stone magazine's list of 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

Chilton said in a 1987 interview that he didn't mind flying under the radar.

"What would be ideal would be to make a ton of money and have nobody know about you," he said. "Fame has a lot of baggage to carry around. I wouldn't want to be like Bruce Springsteen. I don't need that much money and wouldn't want to have 20 bodyguards following me."

Chilton had been scheduled to perform on Saturday with Big Star at the South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas. He is survived by his wife, Laura, and son Timothy. Rest in peace.


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Obits (63), Alex Chilton (4), Box Tops (2), 1960's (84), Big Star (14), 1970's (33)