Sadly, today we have to say rest in peace to two legendary musicians.
California rap crooner Nathanial ‘Nate Dogg’ Hale, the inimitable voice behind countless West Coast anthems including ‘Regulate’, ‘Ain’t No Fun (If the Homies Can’t Have None)’, ‘The Next Episode’ and ‘Where I Wanna Be’, had been suffering health problems for a while, including two strokes in December 2007 and September 2008 that were believed to have damaged his ability to sing as well as his more general health. He died yesterday, in Long Beach.
Meanwhile reggae star Smiley Culture, real name David Emmanuel, died in stranger circumstances, yesterday, during a police raid on his home. The official line appears to be that he died of self-inflicted stab wounds; fans of Culture however, have been asking questions since the news broke yesterday afternoon. Culture cut his teeth as a DJ on the renowned Saxon Soundsystem, but is best known for his 1984 hit ‘Police Officer’, which charted in the UK top 20.
Woofah editor and occasional FACT writer John Eden has collected various tributes to Smiley on his blog; as you’d expect, they’re worth reading.