By Beth Harris | Involved Push
LOS ANGELES — Jim Gordon, the rock ‘n’ roll session drummer who played on typical records by Eric Clapton, George Harrison and The Seaside Boys but endured from increasing psychological overall health problems and used the 2nd 50 % of his lifestyle in prison for killing his mom, has died at 77.
Gordon died Monday at the California Healthcare Facility in Vacaville, the state Section of Corrections and Rehabilitation confirmed Thursday. It is considered he died of all-natural triggers, but the formal lead to will be established by the Solano County coroner. Gordon, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia, experienced been in jail for four many years.
From the mid-1960s to the mid-1970s, couple of drummers were being additional in need than Gordon, a Los Angeles native and protege of the all-time flexible session person, Hal Blaine. Gordon experienced been drumming considering the fact that his teenagers and — early in his vocation — was element of Phil Spector’s celebrated studio ensemble, “The Wrecking Crew,” which showcased Blaine.
“When I did not have the time, I proposed Jim,” Blaine advised Rolling Stone in 1985. “He was one hell of a drummer. I imagined he was one particular of the real comers.”
Gordon ultimately played on the Seashore Boys’ landmark, experimental “Pet Sounds” and the Byrds’ “The Notorious Byrd Brothers,” Harrison’s write-up-Beatles triple album “All Matters Should Pass” and Steely Dan’s jazz-rock “Pretzel Logic.” He worked with a vast array of major acts, from Joan Baez and Jackson Browne to Merle Haggard and Tom Petty. A single of his notable credits was a drum break on the Incredible Bongo Band’s “Apache” that has been regularly sampled by rap songs artists, amid them Jay-Z, Busta Rhymes and Kool Moe Dee.
Gordon also toured with with Clapton, bassist Carl Radle and keyboardist Bobby Whitlock: the main of what, in 1970, became Derek and the Dominos, one of rock’s finest just one-shot groups.
Their only studio album, the double document “Layla and Other Assorted Enjoy Tracks,” has usually been named the imaginative peak of Clapton’s vocation. He was tormented at the time by his unrequited adore for Harrison’s spouse, Pattie Boyd, and channeled his despair into this kind of anguished blues and really hard rock jams as “Why Does Like Have To Be So Unfortunate?”, “Bell Bottom Blues” and the 7-minute title observe.
The initially 50 percent of “Layla” was a substantial-quantity showcase for Clapton and guest guitarist Duane Allman, the next 50 % a mournful piano coda of disputed origins. Gordon was officially credited as co-writer for “Layla,” but Whitlock afterwards claimed Gordon took the piano melody from his then-girlfriend, singer Rita Coolidge. In her 2016 memoir “Delta Woman,” Coolidge wrote that the song was named “Time” when she and Gordon wrote it. They afterwards performed it for Clapton, who — Coolidge alleged — used it for “Layla.”
“I was infuriated,” Coolidge wrote. “What they’d plainly accomplished was take the music Jim and I had written, jettisoned the lyrics, and tacked it on to the conclude of Eric’s music. It was nearly the exact same arrangement.”
By the early 1970s, Gordon was already starting to be a threat to many others. Coolidge wrote in her memoir that the pair was touring with Joe Cocker when Gordon attacked her 1 night time in a lodge hallway. Gordon strike her in the eye, she wrote, “so really hard that I was lifted off the flooring and slammed from the wall on the other aspect of the hallway.” She was briefly knocked unconscious.
With two months still left on the tour, Coolidge done with a black eye. She didn’t file battery prices versus Gordon but did indicator a restraining order, and their partnership finished.
In June 1983, Gordon attacked his 71-year-aged mom, Osa Gordon, with a hammer and fatally stabbed her with a butcher knife. He claimed that a voice explained to him to do it.
It was not until finally right after his arrest for second-degree murder that Gordon was diagnosed with schizophrenia. Gordon was sentenced to 16 years to everyday living in prison with the possibility of parole.
On the other hand, he was denied parole several occasions right after not attending any of the hearings and remained in prison till his dying.
Involved Press author Hillel Italie contributed to this report.