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December 31, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Joseph Duncan McLellan, 76, the Washington Post's longtime music critic, died of kidney failure Monday at a nursing home in Hyattsville, Md. As a critic, McLellan was known for his generosity of spirit. He found strongly negative reviews a bit mean, he said, because "you can find weakness in any human effort." His final review appeared Oct. 13. "To be the primary critic of a monopoly newspaper is an overwhelming role," McLellan once told Washingtonian magazine.
February 9, 2005 | Robert Hilburn
It's still four days before we'll have the Grammy voters' verdict on album and record of the year, but the nation's pop music critics have already given us their choices. Rapper Kanye West's thoughtful, dynamic "The College Dropout" was named album of the year in the Village Voice poll of 793 critics, while Scottish rock band Franz Ferdinand's effervescent "Take Me Out" was judged best single record.
August 20, 2003 | Carmela Ciuraru, Special to The Times
Anyone disheartened by the generally mediocre state of today's rock criticism won't feel much better after reading "Mainlines, Blood Feasts, and Bad Taste," a collection of writings by the influential critic Lester Bangs. The book is a reminder that, unfortunately, he is no longer around to tell us what music to listen to, love or hate, in his inimitable cranky voice.
July 28, 2003 | From Staff and Wire Reports
Harold C. Schonberg, 87, a former chief music critic for the New York Times and the first winner of a Pulitzer Prize for criticism, died of unspecified causes Saturday in a Manhattan hospital. Schonberg worked for the New York paper from 1950 until 1985, and estimated that he had written 1.3 million words during his tenure as chief critic from 1960 to 1980. In addition to his articles of criticism, he wrote 13 books, including some that have become standard reference works.
November 2, 2002 | From Times Wire Reports
Chevrolet's national sponsorship of a Christian music tour has caused controversy, with some faith leaders -- and leaders of no faith -- saying the mix of corporate and Christian interests is inappropriate. The "Come Together and Worship" tour, which began this week in Atlanta, includes three well-known names in evangelical Christian circles: musicians Third Day and Michael W. Smith and author Max Lucado.
August 29, 2002 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
John S. Wilson, 89, the first New York Times critic to write exclusively about popular music and jazz, died Tuesday in Princeton, N.J. The cause of death was not reported. Wilson, who remained a freelance writer throughout his career, began contributing to the Times in 1952. He covered everything from cabaret to the folk revival, but was best known for his writing on jazz. Saxophonist Sonny Rollins named "John S.," a song on his album "The Bridge," in his honor. Born in Elizabeth, N.J.
August 17, 2002 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Byron Belt, 73, a music and arts critic whose best-read piece was "Commandments of Concert Etiquette," died of kidney failure Aug. 10 at his home in the Northern California community of Burlingame. As a critic for the Newhouse News Service, Belt frequently reviewed San Francisco Symphony and opera performances. His "Commandments of Concert Etiquette" was originally written for the New York Philharmonic's programs. It was later republished in programs around the country.
A top executive of Radio One Inc., the nation's largest broadcaster of black music, is roiling the industry with allegations of corruption in the music promotion business while generating criticisms of her own company's conduct. Chief Operating Officer Mary Catherine Sneed said the music business is rife with payoffs to radio stations to guarantee airplay of songs. She alleged that some money is illegally being kicked back to record label executives.
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