Dr. John, whose Hall of Fame career flowed from New Orleans soul, dies

Dr. John, a member of the Rock <><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>& Roll Hall of Fame/a and a six-time Grammy winner, died Thursday morning from a heart attack, said publicist and social media manager Karen Beninato./ppDr. John, whose real name was Malcolm John Rebennack Jr, was 77./ppBeninato’s post on Dr. John’s Facebook page said memorial arrangements will be announced./ppDr. John “created a unique blend of music which carried his home town, New Orleans, at its heart, as it was always in his heart,” she wrote./ppa href=”https://www.grammy.com/grammys/artists/dr-john” target=”_blank”According to the Grammy website/a, Dr. John began his musical career working as a songwriter and guitarist in the 1950s. He later played keyboards for Aretha Franklin, the Rolling Stones and Van Morrison./ppHe told Smithsonian.com in 2009, that in 1960, or so, he got shot in a finger when he went to defend a bandmate who was being pistol-whipped./pp”Ronnie was just a kid and his mother had told me ‘You better look out for my son,’ ” he told the website. “Oh god, that was all I was thinking about. I tried to stop the guy, I had my hand over the barrel and he shot.”/ppHe switched to piano after that./ppIn the late 1960s, he became “Dr. John, the Nite Tripper” when he went solo./ppHis song “Right Place Wrong Time” peaked at No. 9 on the Billboard chart in 1973./ppThe blues, rock and jazz musician won his most recent Grammy in 2012 for the best blues album, “Locked Down.”/ppFormer Beatles drummer Ringo Starr tweeted: “God bless, Dr. John. Peace and love to all his family. I love the doctor peace and love.”/ppGuitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd a href=”https://www.instagram.com/p/ByYqLe_nu-P/?igshid=f293n3166bar” target=”_blank”wrote on Instagram/a: Just heard a Louisiana legend has passed. Dr John was a friend and an inspiration to me. I’ve never met another man quite like him. When a person so unique leaves us, it creates a void that will never be filled.”/ppGuitarist Joe Bonamassa tweeted: “Man this really hurts … One of the greatest of all time and a real genius and gentleman.”/ppCNN’s Dave Alsup contributed to this report./p