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The Enigma that was Leon Redbone

211hMGtr-bLWe lost two of the most unique and iconic musical stylists to emerge from the 1970s over the past week, as Leon Redbone and Dr. John departed terra firma. As both deserve their own tribute, I'll feature Dr. John next Friday. 

One of my favorite Leon Redbone moments was in the early 1980s when Budweiser featured the enigmatic artist in a TV commercial. My guess is that 90% of America (and, I'm being generous) had no idea who Leon Redbone was...but somebody on the creative team did and thought featuring him in this beyond surreal (for the era) commercial was a good idea. That person was likely fired immediately or went on to a stellar career.

In an era in which there were often cross-over acts between musical genres...almost nobody was doing the music of the 30s and 40s. And yet, Leon Redbone did...and got away with it. Those in the business adored him. Those on the outside...well?

He only had one song that made the Top 100...but his influence was unmistakable.

One this Music Friday, we say farewell to Leon Redbone with "Seduced."

If you missed his life, this short-form documentary has just been released.

Enjoy the next plateau, Leon...we enjoyed your time-tripping on terra firma.


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Bill Geist

Bill GeistBill Geist

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