Singer Ian Whitcomb, You Turn Me On, 78

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Apr 20, 2020, 6:02:47 PM4/20/20
Unconfirmed but from a reliable source...

Singer Ian Whitcomb, 78

Singer Larry Tamblyn writes...

2:17 PM PDT
I was just informed that Isn has died.

2:00 PM PDT

I just learned that my dear old acquaintance Ian Whitcomb is in the hospital and is not expected to live.
Ian who's novelty recording "You Turn me On", reached #8 on the Billboard Charts in 1965. Like the Standells, he was also on Tower Records.

Because he is being isolated, I am assuming that he is suffering from COVID-19, which has affected each and every one of us. He and I toured together in 1967, and I found him to be one of the most unique individuals I’ve ever known. His sharp wit and intellect has stuck with me over the years, so much so that I devoted a section of my upcoming autobiography to my memories the times we shared together. I invite every one of you to send he and his wife Regina healing energy.

Following is an edited Wiki bio...

Ian Timothy Whitcomb (born 10 July 1941, Woking, Surrey) is an English entertainer, singer-songwriter, record producer, and actor. As part of the British Invasion, his hit song "You Turn Me On" reached number 8 on Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1965.

He has written several books on popular music, beginning with After the Ball, published by Penguin Books (Britain) and Simon & Schuster (United States) in 1972. He accompanies his singing by playing the ukulele and, through his records, concerts, and film work, has helped to stimulate the current revival of interest in the instrument. His re-creation of the music played aboard the RMS Titanic in the film of that name won a Grammy Award in 1998 for package design and a nomination for Whitcomb's liner notes (Titanic: Music as Heard on the Fateful Voyage).

At Bryanston, a public school in Dorset, England, Whitcomb started a skiffle group in 1957 and then a rock and roll band in 1959. In the early 1960s, while studying history at Trinity College, Dublin, he became a founding member of Dublin's first rhythm and blues band, Bluesville. Their second record release, This Sporting Life (written by Brownie McGhee), charted in the United States in 1965. Whitcomb's next single, You Turn Me On reached Billboard's number 8 spot in July 1965. During his summer vacation in 1965, Whitcomb went to America to appear on such television programs as Shindig, Hollywood A Go-Go and American Bandstand. Whitcomb played the Hollywood Bowl with The Beach Boys in 1965 and then toured with The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, and Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs.

N-Nervous!, Whitcomb's next release, was recorded in Hollywood and reached No. 59 in Billboard and No. 47 in Cash Box. He returned to Dublin for his history finals and received a BA degree. In 1966 he turned to early popular song: his version of a 1916 Al Jolson comedy number, "Where Did Robinson Crusoe Go with Friday on Saturday Night?" was a West Coast hit, reviving the ukulele before the emergence of Tiny Tim.

After making four albums for Tower Records and producing Mae West on her album called Great Balls of Fire for MGM Records in 1972, Whitcomb returned to the UK where he began his writing career with After the Ball. He later wrote Tin Pan Alley, A Pictorial History (1919–1939) and a novel, Lotusland: A Story of Southern California.

Returning to Hollywood, Whitcomb starred in and wrote L.A.–My Home Town (BBC TV; 1976) and Tin Pan Alley (PBS; 1974). He also provided the music for a documentary film, Bugs Bunny: Superstar (UA), which was narrated by Orson Welles. For Play-Rite Music he cut 18 piano rolls that were included in an album, Pianomelt. His other albums reflected his research into the genres of ragtime, Tin Pan Alley, vaudeville, and music hall. These, beginning with Under the Ragtime Moon (1972), were released on several record labels including Warner Bros. Records, United Artists, and Decca Records. During that time he also wrote and produced singles for Warner Bros.' country division, most notably "Hands", a massage parlour story, and "A Friend of a Friend of Mine".

In the 1980s Whitcomb published Rock Odyssey: A Chronicle of the Sixties: Ian Whitcomb, a memoir of the 1960s and described by The New York Times as the best personal account of this period. He also published Ragtime America (Limelight Editions, 1988), followed by a memoir of life as a British expatriate living in Los Angeles, Resident Alien (Century, 1990). He produced a British documentary on black music, Legends of Rhythm and Blues (part of the series Repercussions, made by Third Eye Productions for Channel Four in 1984). During this time he also hosted a radio show in Los Angeles for fifteen years, taking the program from KROQ-FM to KCRW and finally to KPCC-FM.[3] His songs can he heard in the films Bloody Movie (1987), Cold Sassy Tree (1989), Encino Man (1992), Grass (1999), Man of the Century (1999), Stanley's Gig (2000), After the Storm (2001), The Cat's Meow (2002), Last Call (2002), Sleep Easy, Hutch Rimes (2002), Lonesome Jim (2005), and Fido (2006). Ian appeared as Grand Marshal in the 24th Occasional Pasadena Doo Dah Parade on November 19, 1999.

Whitcomb performs at music festivals throughout America. He continues to write, and he makes frequent guest appearances. He is a regular performer at Cantalini's Restaurant [2] in Playa del Rey, California. He also visits Zelo Pizzeria in Arcadia, California on a weekly basis.

Since 7 November 2007, Whitcomb has had an internet radio program on Wednesday evenings from 8:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.(PST) at He signed with Premiere Radio Networks in September 2010 to launch The Ian Whitcomb Show on XM satellite radio, Channel 24.

Ian Whitcomb was named as a BEST OF L.A. in 2008 by Los Angeles magazine.

In 2009 Whitcomb wrote and, with his Bungalow Boys, performed original music for the West Coast Premiere of The Jazz Age, a play by Allan Knee, at the Blank Theater Company's 2nd Stage Theater in Los Angeles. For his work on The Jazz Age Whitcomb was nominated for an L.A. Theater Award.


May 21, 2020, 7:32:15 PM5/21/20
Too bad. His song always turned me on. (well, that and his others. Also a longtime historian, just like me, who wrpote that book, AFTER THE BALL..I'd read it..)
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