Category Archives: goodbye

Goodbye, Jeff LaBar

(March 18, 1963 – July 14, 2021)

Guitarist Jeff LaBar passed away yesterday. LaBar was best known for his work with Cinderella. He also performed with Cinderella bandmate Eric Brittingham in Naked Beggars and released a solo album in 2014. No cause of death was given as of the time of this writing.

Goodbye, Eddie Van Halen

I can’t believe I just typed those words. This one is going to take some time to digest.

January 26, 1955 – October 6, 2020

1979 Topps baseball Eddie Van Halen

Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, the greatest rock guitarist of my lifetime, passed away today from throat cancer. He was an innovator, a magician on six strings. He was the guy everybody wanted to play like. And no one could. Not even close.

Eddie recorded music with his brother Alex (drums on all Van Halen releases), his father Jan (who played clarinet on “Big Bad Bill” from Diver Down), and his son Wolfgang (bass on A Different Kind of Truth and Tokyo Dome Live in Concert. He recorded with Michael Jackson (playing the guitar solo on Thriller‘s “Beat It”), Brian May of Queen (1983’s Strar Fleet Project), and LL Cool J (“We’re The Greatest” from Authentic). He

He was not just a master of his craft. He was the master of his craft.

1979 Topps football Eddie Van Halen

Goodbye, Bob Gibson

(November 9, 1935 – October 2, 2020)

Bob Gibson was one of the most intimidating pitchers to ever take the mound in Major League Baseball. His 1968 season stands as one of the greatest of all time, with 268 strikeouts and a minuscule 1.77 ERA earning him both Cy Young Award and Most Valuable Player honors. After his Hall of Fame playing career, “Hoot” served as the pitching coach for the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves under manager Joe Torre.

Goodbye, Lou Brock

Brock 1986 Topps Cardinals

Speedy Hall of Famer Lou Brock, the holder of the all-time stolen base record until Rickey Henderson came on the scene, passed away today. He was 81 years old. The six-time All-Star was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1985 on the strength of his prowess on the basepaths and more than 3,000 hits.

Goodbye, Tom Seaver

Tom Seaver Cincinnati Reds 2020 Topps

Tom Seaver, nicknamed “Tom Terrific” for his immense talent on the baseball diamond, passed away August 31, 2020, at the age of 75. He was ushered into the Hall of Fame in 1992 with only five out of 430 voters declining to check his name. He was a tremendous pitcher for the New York Mets, Cincinnati Reds, Chicago White Sox, and Boston Red Sox, and is a member of the Mets and Reds team Halls of Fame.

Goodbye, Kenny Rogers

(August 21, 1938 – March 20, 2020)

Country music legend Kenny Rogers has passed away at the age of 81. Best known for songs such as “The Gambler,” “Lucille,” and “Lady,” Rogers also recorded a song in the late 1990s that connected with baseball fans: “The Greatest.” He also hit the charts with several duets, teaming up with superstars such as Dolly Parton, Sheena Easton, Gladys Knight, and Alison Krauss.

Fun Cards: 1984 Topps Tony Fernandez

(June 30, 1962 – February 16, 2020)

Fernandez

Donruss and Fleer both included the late Tony Fernandez in their 1984 releases, but Topps completely missed the boat (unless I’m overlooking something). I intended to make this card a few weeks ago when Fernandez passed away but I just had too much going on at the time.

Fernandez was a great ballplayer, probably the third-best shortstop for a time in the American League behind Hall of Famers Cal Ripken Jr. and Alan Trammell. He was an All-Star three times in the 1980s for the Jays, in 1992 for the Padres, and again in 1999 for the Jays. He also played for the Mets, Reds, Yankees, Indians, and Brewers.

Fun Cards 1974 Topps, 1974 Kellogg’s, and 1975 Topps Rush

What’s your favorite Rush album?

1974 Topps Geddy Lee

To be honest, I don’t have one. I’m not a huge fan. Never have been. I remember one of my guitar teachers in high school was a huge Rush fan, and tried to teach me a couple of songs, but they just never clicked with me.

1974 Topps Alex Lifeson

The original drummer for Rush was John Rutsey. He played on the band’s debut 1974 album, which included the songs “What You’re Doing” and “Working Man.” It is more of a hard rock album in the vein of Led Zeppelin than the progressive sound they became famous for.

1974 Topps John Rutsey

It’s a good bet that Geddy Lee would have been the band member to be featured in Kellogg’s “3-D Super Stars” set back in the day, if they focused on rockers instead of ballers.

1974 Kelloggs Geddy Lee

The impetus for this post, however, is Neil Peart. Peart, one of the greatest drummers in rock history and the primary lyricist for the band after joining in mid-1974 (his first studio record with the group was 1975’s Fly By Night), passed away January 7 from glioblastoma.

1975 Topps Neil Peart

I’ve listened to some Rush over the past couple of days, and they’re starting to grow on me. I’ll never be as big a fan as my guitar teacher, but I won’t automatically change the radio station when their songs come on either.

Goodbye, Marie Fredriksson

(May 30, 1958 – December 9, 2019)

Marie Fredriksson Roxette

Singer and songwriter Marie Fredriksson, best known for her work with the 1980s pop duo Roxette, died yesterday in Sweden from complications from a brain tumor. She was 61 years old.

Marie Fredriksson Roxette

Roxette’s debut album, Pearls of Passion, was released in 1986, but it was 1988’s Look Sharp! that put the group in the spotlight, selling 9 million copies across the globe. The follow-up, Joyride, was released in 1991 and sold 11 million worldwide. They scored four #1 hits in the US: “The Look,” “Listen To Your Heart,” “It Must Have Been Love,” and “Joyride.” One of my personal favorites, however, failed to reach the top spot…

Per Gessle Roxette

Per Gessle Roxette

Goodbye, Ric Ocasek

(March 23, 1949 – September 15, 2019)

Ric Ocasek

The Cars frontman and producer extraordinaire Ric Ocasek was found unresponsive in his Manhatten townhouse today. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The cause of death has not been released.

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