Don Everly, who became one of rock and roll’s most influential musicians from his early days as one half of the Everly Brothers, has passed away. The Los Angeles Times reports that Everly died at his Nashville home on Saturday (August 21). He was 84 years old.

A representative of the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer confirmed his death at Times, but did not provide details on the cause of his death.

“Don lived by what he felt in his heart,” Everly’s family told the Times in a report. “Don expressed his appreciation for the ability to live out his dreams… with his soulmate and wife, Adela, and to share the music that made him an Everly Brother.”

Born Isaac Donald Everly on February 1, 1937, Everly rose to fame in the late 1950s alongside his younger brother, Phil, as the Everly Brothers, who became one of the most influential vocal duets in the world. era. Their crystal-clear harmonies were heavily inspired by the country harmonies of the Applaches, and their music, like much of early rock and roll, merged traditional country influences with high-spirited rhythm. Don Everly carried the melodies of their songs while Phil sang the distinctive higher harmonies that characterized their sound, and Don’s rhythm guitar playing anchored the tracks.

The combination of these elements has earned the brothers a series of timeless hits including “Bye Bye Love”, “Wake Up Little Susie”, “All I Have to Do Is Dream”, “Bird Dog” and “Cathy’s Clown”, but the the harmony that seemed so perfect on stage did not apply to their life together off the stage, which was often controversial and fraught with resentment and turmoil.

One of the main differences between the brothers was based on completely different lifestyles; while Phil lived a relatively calm life away from the limelight, Don Everly was more flamboyant, dated celebrities, and got involved in drugs. He became seriously addicted to Ritalin in the early 1960s after a doctor prescribed it for exhaustion, suicide in a hotel room in London. According to Times, he underwent shock treatment as part of his treatment before finally overcoming his addiction.

The duo’s commercial importance began to wane in the mid-1960s, although they released several well-respected albums, including Roots in 1968, which had a major influence on the country-rock movement that would later spawn the Byrds, the Flying Burrito Brothers, Linda Ronstadt and the Eagles. The Beatles also named the Everly Brothers as a big influence, and Simon & Garfunkel unabashedly admitted that they borrowed elements of their own vocal sound from the duo.

The Everly Brothers acrimoniously broke up in the early 1970s after a series of personal disagreements and business issues, and they each embarked on a solo career for the next decade, though neither made it. reach the commercial and artistic heights of their efforts together. .

They reunited in 1983 for a concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London, and they spent the following decades engaging in a series of reunions and one-off appearances that included vocals on Paul Simon’s Graceland album. They also toured with Simon & Garfunkel on the latter’s Old Friends Tour in 2003, which eventually saw the folk-rock duo share the stage with their childhood heroes.

The Everly Brothers were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986, and the Country Music Hall of Fame inducted the duo in 2001.

“As a singer, songwriter and guitar innovator, Don Everly was one of the most talented and defining artists in popular music history,” said Country Music Hall of Fame CEO and museum, Kyle Young, in a statement. “His influence reverberates through songs like” So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad) “,” I Wonder if I Care as Much “and” Cathy’s Clown “, through open chords and rhythmic sensibilities that have contributed in giving birth to Keith Richards and many others, and through the ethereal harmonies he conjured with his brother Phil. “

Phil Everly died on January 3, 2014 of complications from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Don Everly is survived by his mother, Margaret; his wife Adela; his son, Edan; and her daughters Venetia, Stacy and Erin.

Remembering the country stars who passed away in 2021:

May they rest in peace …

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