Pop, Hip-Hop and Rock Star Deaths in 2023

RIP Shane MacGowan and Jean Knight


George "Funky" Brown – drummer and co-founder of New Jersey's Kool & the Gang; cancer; 74

Scott Kempner – Bronx-born guitarist and co-founder of the Dictators and the Del-Lords; dementia; 69

Jean Knight – New Orleans-born R&B singer known best for "Mr. Big Stuff" (No. 2, 1971); 80

Mike Marrt – Long Beach, CA-based former guitarist with punk-rock bands Tex & the Horseheads and Thelonious Monster; 67

Shane MacGowan – founder, singer and songwriter of Irish punk-rock band The Pogues; lived a legendary life of excess; viral encephalitis; 65

Jamie Ross – frontman of New York band Like It

Abe Stoklasa – Missouri-born and Nashville-based country music singer/songwriter; wrote songs for Lady A, Tim McGraw and others; 36

Greg "Fingers" Taylor – Kansas-born former harmonica player with Jimmy Buffett & the Coral Reefer Band; Alzheimer's; 71

Conny Van Dyke – white Virginia-born singer signed by Motown in 1960; acted in Hell's Angels '69 and other movies and TV shows; dementia; 78

Geordie Walker – guitarist with post-punk Brit group Killing Joke; stroke; 64



Carla Bley (Lovella Borg) - Oakland-born jazz pianist and composer; brain cancer; 87

Angelo Bruschini - guitarist with British trip-hop group Massice Attack; lung cancer; 62

Michael "Ibo" Cooper - founding member as keyboardist of reggae group Third World, also performed with Inner Circle; cancer; 71

DJ Mark (Mark James) - known as the 45 King, the Bronx-bprn DJ als produced albums and songs by Eminem, Jay-Z, Ghiostface Killah and many more; 62

Rudolph "Rudy" Isley - one of four Ohio-born musicians who founded the Isley Brothers in the '50s; heart attack; 84

Dwight Twilley - Tulsa-born power pop singer-songwriter and band leader, had hit with "I'm on Fire" in 1975; stroke; 72


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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of CelebStoner.com, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.