Sunday, October 5, 2014

Paul Revere Dies: The Raiders Band Leader, "Madman of Rock n' Roll," Was 76 by Corinne Heller

Paul Revere and the Raiders
Rick Diamond/Getty Images for IEBA
Paul Revere, leader and organ player of instrumental rock group Paul Revere & The Raiders, has died at age 76.

performer, who was dubbed the "The Last Madman of Rock n' Roll" due to
his sense of humor and whose band sported Revolutionary War-style
costumes during their performances, passed away on Saturday at his home
in Idaho. The cause of his death was not revealed.

A message was posted on The Raiders' official website in the form of a sweet, funny letter composed by "everyone who has ever met" him.

you after a show in the autograph line cemented the deal for everyone,"
it said. "Just as fun, funny and spontaneous as you were onstage,
extremely nice and accommodating to everyone who waited in the long
lines to meet you. Take a picture - 'SURE, take TWO!' Sign these 20
albums? 'Why NOT, you helped pay for my first house, and my first

"When you turned your attention towards
someone, you made that person feel special and in your spotlight," it
added. "You had a pet name for each person, and you never hesitated to
tell them how exceptional they were."

"On October
4th, 2014, an incredible ride came to the end, As Rock and Roll Band
Leader Paul Revere died peacefully at his home in Idaho, a small estate
overlooking a tranquil river canyon," 
Roger Hart, who became the band's manager in the '60s, said in another online message.

The singer revealed in a Facebook post
this past July that he was dealing with "health issues," adding,
"Nothing can stop the old man. I'm like the Energizer Bunny! I jump on
my tour bus and go from city to city, packing a trunk full of great
Raider songs, tight pants and bad jokes—all against doctor's orders, by
the way!"

The band continued to perform. On Aug. 1,
the group promoted a new gig—they were to perform on a musical "oldies"
cruise in 2015.

Revere had said in a 2013 message
that he has dealt with "just about everything" health-wise over the past
75 years—"2 types of cancer (beat ‘em both!), rotator cuff surgery
(killed it!), hysterectomy (don't ask) and on and on."

REWIND: Seattle Gets''Swoopy'' Rock Shrine

Paul Revere's group was most famous in the '60s and '70s and were
the first group to be signed by Columbia Records. They released such as
"Kicks" and "Indian Reservation (The Lament of the Cherokee Reservation
Indian)." The band was also one of the first performers of the hit
"Louie Louie," which was made famous by The Kingsman in 1963.

were the party band that played all these parties for the
fraternities," Revere was quoted as saying in an interview, posted on "We were always an off the wall, crazy kind of group. We loved to do the bizarre onstage. We were a fun band."

also talked about how they got their Revolutionary War military look,
saying the band once obtained costumes from a shop in Portman, Oregon
"for the hell of it," adding, "Paul Revere and The Raiders...why not?"

that night at the dance, we took an intermission half way through it
and put on the Revolutionary coats and the outfits. We came out and it
just added another element of craziness to the show. I started renting
'em for a couple of weekends and I said, 'This is stupid. I might as
well have 'em made.' So, I had some costumes made, just the coats," he
said, adding, "It was the kind of thing that just grew because of the
name. It just seemed like a way to get attention."

Revere was born in Nebraska in January 1938 as Paul Revere Dick. He was preceded in death by his third wife, Sydney.

world will be a lot less fun, a lot less kind and gentle without Paul
Revere in it," the letter stated. "Your larger-than-life absence will
leave a void in our hearts and our lives. We are all blessed to have
known you, and we'll miss you more than you could ever know."