Thursday March 18, 2010 at 2:42 am
R.I.P. Alex Chilton
Stephen Slaybaugh

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The Commerical Appeal in Memphis has reported that Alex Chilton died of a heart attack today. Though he had a long career as a solo artist, Chilton is perhaps best remembered as a singer in the Box Tops, who scored a hit with “The Letter,” and as leader of ‘70s seminal power-pop band Big Star, who was scheduled to play SXSW this week. While guitarist Chris Bell died in a car accident in 1978, several years after he left the band, Chilton had reformed Big Star in the ‘90s with original drummer Jody Stephens and the Posies’ Jon Auer and Ken Stringfellow sitting in for Bell and bassist Andy Hummel, who opted not to participate. However, with Hummel scheduled for a panel to discuss the band with Stephens, Auer and Stringfellow, it was quite possible that Big Star’s SXSW performances would have been the first time all the remaining members would play together. Chilton was 59 years old.

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