|Height:||196 cm (6' 6'')|
|Birth Day:||January 11, 1942|
|Death Date:||Jun 18, 2011 (age 69)|
|Birth Place:||Chesapeake, United States|
As per our current Database, Clarence Clemons died on Jun 18, 2011 (age 69).
|Height||Weight||Hair Colour||Eye Colour||Blood Type||Tattoo(s)|
|196 cm (6' 6'')||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
He started playing the saxophone at the age of nine. Later, he attended Maryland State College and played football, during which a car accident prevented him from trying out for the Dallas Cowboys.
Clarence Anicholas Clemons Jr. was born on January 11, 1942, in Norfolk County, Virginia (later the city of Chesapeake), the son of fish market owner Clarence Clemons, Sr. and his wife Thelma. He was the oldest of their three children. His grandfather was a Southern Baptist preacher and, as a result, the young Clemons grew up in a very religious environment listening to gospel music. When he was nine, his father gave him an alto saxophone as a Christmas present and paid for music lessons. He later switched to baritone saxophone and played in a high school jazz band. His uncle also influenced his early musical development when he bought him his first King Curtis album. Curtis, and his work with the Coasters in particular, would become a major influence on Clemons and led to him switching to tenor saxophone.
Well before this meeting, however, Clemons and Springsteen had moved within the same circle of musical acquaintances. Norman Seldin had managed and promoted several local bands, including The Motifs who featured Vinnie Roslin, later to play with Springsteen in Steel Mill. On April 22, 1966, Seldin had also organized a battle of the bands competition at the Matawan-Keyport Roller Drome in Matawan, New Jersey. Springsteen was among the entrants playing with his then band, The Castiles. Billy Ryan, who played lead guitar with The Joyful Noyze, also played in The Jaywalkers with Garry Tallent and Steve Van Zandt. Clemons himself had also played with Tallent in Little Melvin & The Invaders.
The story of how Clemons first met Bruce Springsteen has entered into E Street Band mythology. "The E Street Shuffle" contains a monologue about how they met, and the event was also immortalized in "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out". They allegedly met for the first time in September 1971. At the time, Clemons was playing with Norman Seldin & the Joyful Noyze at The Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, New Jersey. Seldin was a Jersey Shore musician/entrepreneur who, as well as playing piano and leading various bands, had his own record label, Selsom Records. In 1969, Clemons had recorded an eponymous album with this band. In 2008, tracks from this album were reissued on an anthology, Asbury Park — Then And Now, put together by Seldin. It was Karen Cassidy, lead vocalist with the Joyful Noyze, who encouraged Clemons to check out Springsteen, who was playing with the Bruce Springsteen Band at the nearby Student Prince. Clemons recalled their meeting in various interviews:
In July 1972, Springsteen began recording his debut album Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. and during breaks from recording, he jammed with Clemons and The Joyful Noyze on at least two occasions at The Shipbottom Lounge in Point Pleasant, New Jersey. When Springsteen then decided to use a tenor saxophone on the songs "Blinded by the Light" and "Spirit in the Night," he called Clemons. By October Springsteen was ready to tour and promote Greetings… and he put together a band featuring Clemons, Tallent, Danny Federici and Vini Lopez. Clemons played his last gig with Norman Seldin & The Joyful Noyze at the Club Plaza in Bayville, New Jersey, on October 21, 1972. Four days later Clemons made his debut with the formative E Street Band at an unadvertised, impromptu performance at The Shipbottom Lounge.
Outside of his work with the E Street Band, Clemons recorded with many other artists and had a number of musical projects on his own. The best known of these are his 1985 vocal duet with Jackson Browne on the Top-20 hit single "You're a Friend of Mine", and his saxophone work on Aretha Franklin's 1985 Top-10 hit single "Freeway of Love". He was managed briefly in the 1980s by former Crawdaddy editor Peter Knobler, at whose wedding Clemons played with his band, Clarence Clemons & the Red Bank Rockers. During the 1980s, Clemons also owned a Red Bank, New Jersey, nightclub called Big Man's West. He toured in the first incarnation of Ringo Starr & The All-Starr Band in 1989, singing "You're a Friend of Mine" (dueting with Billy Preston) and an updated rap arrangement of "Quarter to Three." In the mid-1990s, he recorded a Japan-only CD release called Aja and the Big Man "Get It On" with Los Angeles singer/songwriter Aja Kim. Clarence also sat in with the Grateful Dead during the Grateful Dead's Summer Solstice Simulcast concert in 1989. There is a video of this concert in circulation. In 1992 he was involved in the sessions for the album Zoom by Alvin Lee. At this time he also recorded an instrumental record with Alan Niven producing, Peacemaker. In the 2000s, Clemons along with producer Narada Michael Walden, put together a group called The Temple of Soul, releasing a single called "Anna". He also recorded with philanthropic teen band Creation. Clemons collaborated with Lady Gaga on the songs "Hair" and "The Edge of Glory" from her album Born This Way, providing a saxophone track and solo. Clemons occasionally sat in with the Grateful Dead and as recently as April 2011, sat in on several tunes with the Grateful Dead "spinoff" band Furthur during a concert in Boca Raton, Florida. Just days before he suffered a major stroke, he shot a music video with Lady Gaga for "The Edge of Glory".
Clemons appeared in several movies and on television, making his screen debut in Martin Scorsese's 1977 musical, New York, New York in which he played a trumpet player. He played one of the 'Three Most Important People In The World' in the 1989 comedy film Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. In 1985, Clemons was a special guest star in Diff'rent Strokes episode "So You Want to Be a Rock Star", in which he played the role of Mr. Kingsley, a young saxophonist helping Arnold Jackson to learn to play his sax. He has also been a guest voice in an episode of The Simpsons. In 1990, he co-starred in the pilot episode of Human Target, a Rick Springfield action series intended for ABC. He also played the role of Jack in Swing starring opposite Lisa Stansfield and Hugo Speer, directed by Nick Mead. He appeared alongside Michael McKean and David Bowe as a miner in one episode of musician "Weird Al" Yankovic's children's television show The Weird Al Show. He made a cameo appearance in 1999's sequel to The Blues Brothers, Blues Brothers 2000, as part of the metal section of super blues band The Louisiana Gator Boys. He appeared in the episode Michael's band of Damon Wayans' television show, My Wife And Kids as a musician and performed an original composition, co written with bassist, Lynn Woolever, called "One Shadow In The Sun". Clemons twice appeared as a Baltimore youth-program organizer in HBO's crime drama The Wire. He appeared in an episode of Brothers and in the "Eddie's Book" episode of 'Til Death as himself.
At age 18, Clemons had one of his earliest studio experiences, recording sessions with Tyrone Ashley's Funky Music Machine, a band from Plainfield, New Jersey, that included Ray Davis, Eddie Hazel and Billy Bass Nelson, all of whom later played with Parliament-Funkadelic. He also performed with Daniel Petraitis, a New Jersey and Nashville legend. These sessions were eventually released in 2007 by Truth and Soul Records as Let Me Be Your Man. While at Maryland State College, Clemons also joined his first band, the Vibratones, which played James Brown covers and stayed together for about four years between 1961 and 1965. While still playing with this band, he moved to Somerset, New Jersey, where he worked as a counselor for emotionally disturbed children at the Jamesburg Training School for Boys between 1962 and 1970.
Clemons suffered a stroke in June 2011. He underwent two surgeries, after which he was declared to be in serious but stable condition. According to Rolling Stone magazine, he had been showing signs of recovery. However, on June 18, 2011, he died from complications caused by the stroke while in West Palm Beach, Florida. He was 69. Upon announcement of Clemons' death, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie ordered all state flags to be lowered to half staff in his honor. He was survived by his four sons and his fifth wife, Victoria, whom he had married in 2008.
At their concert in Portsmouth, Virginia, on June 19, 2011, Phish covered "Thunder Road" as a tribute to Clemons.
At an Eddie Vedder concert in Hartford, Connecticut on June 18, 2011, Vedder wished Clemons well, and was soon notified by a sound tech that Clemons had died. Vedder later played a tribute to Clemons during Pearl Jam song "Better Man" changing the lyrics to include, "Can't find a Bigger Man" (paying homage to Clemons' nickname "The Big Man"). During a subsequent performance on the Late Show with David Letterman, Vedder played a ukulele with "Clarence" written across the front of it.
Before singing "Moment of Surrender" at the U2 concert in Anaheim on June 18, 2011, Bono paid tribute to Clemons. He read lyrics from Springsteen's "Jungleland" near the end of the song, and repeated them at the song's conclusion. Bono repeated this dedication and tribute during "Moment of Surrender" at the U2 concert in New Jersey on June 21 and again in Baltimore on June 22.
Bon Jovi performed "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" as the first encore during their concert in Horsens on June 19, 2011. While playing that song, photos of Clemons were shown on the giant video screen behind the band.
Jimmy Buffett added verses that included Clemons in "The Stories We Could Tell" during his final encore during his concert on June 21, 2011. The rest of the band left the stage and it was Buffett playing and singing alone.
On July 17, 2011, a tribute concert was held at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, New Jersey. Springsteen performed a 45-minute set playing some of Clemons' songs. Clemons' son, Clarence III, (known as Nick), opened the show with his band, The Nick Clemons Band.
On October 1, 2011, a tribute to Clemons took place at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida. Traditionally an annual charity event hosted by Clemons called The Classic Rock & Roll Party, the event paid tribute to Clemons' life and all he did for Home Safe, a non-profit organization helping victims of child abuse and domestic violence.
In October 2011 Lady Gaga paid tribute to him when she accepted the "Big Man of the Year" from Little Kids Rock. In a June 21, 2012 concert in Sydney, Australia Gaga dedicated her song "The Edge of Glory" in which Clemons has contributed.
As a youth Clemons also showed potential as a football player, and graduated from Crestwood High School (now Crestwood Middle) before attending Maryland State College on both music and football scholarships. At 6'4" and 240 pounds, he played as a lineman on the same team as Art Shell and Emerson Boozer and attracted the attention of the Cleveland Browns, who offered him a trial. Clemons also tried out for the Dallas Cowboys. However, the day before, he was involved in a serious car accident which effectively ended any plans of a career in the National Football League. He would eventually be posthumously inducted into the university's Athletics Hall of Fame on February 24, 2012.
Clemons was married five times and had four sons named Charles, Christopher, Jarod, and Clarence III (known as Nick). His nephew, Jake Clemons, was introduced as the new saxophone player of the E Street Band in 2012 after Clemons' death.
In January 2012, Clemons' hometown paid tribute with memorial concerts featuring members of the E Street Band. The concert took place at The NorVa concert hall.
On July 28, 2012, in Gothenburg, Springsteen and the E Street Band performed "Jungleland" for the first time on the Wrecking Ball World Tour, with Clemons' nephew Jake Clemons playing the saxophone solo and the song being dedicated to Clemons.
In April 2014, the E Street Band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Clemons' widow accepted on his behalf.
Currently, Clarence Clemons is 79 years, 8 months and 11 days old. Clarence Clemons will celebrate 80th birthday on a Tuesday 11th of January 2022.
Find out about Clarence Clemons birthday activities in timeline view here.