One of the greatest songwriters and producers of modern age, Allen Toussaint, has passed away, aged 77. A proud representative of New Orleans style of rhythm-and-blues and a brilliant piano player, his compositions had been embraced from the early ’60s by the likes of Irma Thomas and THE ROLLING STONES and, later on were covered by hundreds of artists, spawning hits and fan favorites for THE WHO, Robert Plant and Robert Palmer. More so, Toussaint not only penned, played and performed with various musicians but he also applied a warm studio touch when recording and arranging for such unlikely – for black master in the ’70s – artists as Frankie Miller and Sandy Denny, the list of his charges and collaborators including Dr. John, Paul McCartney and THE BAND, too. Yet it was Allen’s personality – open, radiant – that charmed everyone, and that’s what made his songs so genuine and special. That’s really an entire era’s gone now.
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