Don Van Vliet, the painter who became famous in the late 1960s as Captain Beefheart, died yesterday from complications related to multiple sclerosis. He was 69 years old.
Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band’s most famous album is 1969’s Trout Mask Replica, produced by his pal and collaborator Frank Zappa. Captain Beefheart also sings on “Willie the Pimp” from Zappa’s album Hot Rats.
Just a week ago, the Los Angeles Times reported that former Magic Band guitarist Gary Lucas was putting on a Captain Beefheart exposition. Read about it here.
Other reports from around the web:
From L.A. Weekly, Top 14 Reasons Why Captain Beefheart Was a True American Genius.
From E! Online, Captain Beefheart, aka Don Van Vliet, Dies.
From the Guardian, Dust Blows Forward and Dust Blows Back — An Appreciation.
From NME, a tribute that includes some of Captain Beefheart’s music videos, Franz Ferdinand, Zola Jesus, Klaxons Pay Tribute to Captain Beefheart.
And here’s a live performance of one of my personal favorite Captain Beefheart songs, “Bat Chain Puller”: