The music world lost a giant on Monday: Allen Toussaint was not only a music legend, but a friend and inspiration to many other artists. The songwriter, composer, producer and musician died at age 77 in Madrid.
Those lucky enough to call him a collaborator, mentor and friend were saddened by the news. See what they had to say about the iconic musician:
“I’m still in shock and heartbroken after hearing of the news of the passing of my longtime friend, brother in music, teacher, mentor and most gentle person you’ll ever meet, Allen Toussaint. He was a true musical treasure and legend that New Orleans shared with the world. Thank you Allen for all the music, good times and the legacy you leave behind for everyone to continue to enjoy. Rest in Peace.
Peace & Love,”
— Art “Poppa Funk” Neville
“Music lovers around the world today are mourning the passing of the legendary Allen Toussaint. He was one of the architects of rhythm and blues; a writer of many of America’s most well-known and beloved early rock and roll songs. I had the pleasure of hosting him at the Aspen Songwriters Festival some years ago and was honored to be able to perform with him and witness his inspired one man show. Sending love to his family and friends around the world – he will be missed by millions, but his music will never die.”
— John Oates
Paul on Allen Toussaint: “Sorry to hear that Allen Toussaint died after a concert in Spain. Having worked with him in New Orleans I know what a sweet and gentle guy he was and a massive songwriting talent with songs like ‘Fortune Teller’, ‘Southern Nights’, ‘Working in the Coal Mine’ and ‘Play Something Sweet (Brickyard Blues)’. His songs will be cherished by people like me who will have fond memories of Allen forever. Deepest sympathies and love to his family from me and my family.” – Paul ___ Photo of Paul and Allen in New Orleans during the sessions for the album Venus and Mars #PaulMcCartney #AllenToussaint?
Man this hit home. Of all the cats that I never had a 1 on 1 convo w/ to pick their brain about their music experiences: this is numero uno. I don’t want y’all thinkin’ “this is just some old legend that passed away” naw. This dude wrote some of your favorite music & you just didn’t know it. He effected SO many genres. That’s how you know how potent and effective your art is: when you quietly change the scene w/o proper acknowledgement. If someone had the right to have KWest brag swag it was this man. But his humble quiet disposition wouldn’t allow such a thing. His work will now speak for itself. Just take time to peep his work w #LeeDorsey (#GetOutMyLifeWoman #RideYourPony) some of the greatest clever pop tunes crafted. Hip hop heads still salivate over all #TheMeters tunes he produced & shot new energy into the culture once sampling #JamesBrown was becoming stale (#CissyStrut #LookKaPyPy #JustKissedMyBaby #OhCalcutta) then came a slew of artists in the 70s & 80s that took his work & breathed new life into his songs: #YesWeCanCan #LadyMarmalade #WorkingInACoalmine) —name em! His work was so powerful everyone from #PaulMccartney to #DrJohn to #EricClapton to #TheRollingStones to even #JayZ (“….dear god I wonder can you save me?”….that piano loop? #Toussaint all day) #Amerie’s most banging joint? (A Toussaint production sample) at least 12 “Get Out My Life Woman” snares were like starch in hip hop’s daily nutritional chart–meaning so there you barely notice it.—I can go on and on. Because his work goes on and on. You’ll read better op-eds by professional journalists. Kinda hard to cram all of this hiding from trainer in the gym on iPhone. But i felt the need to write something. When I tag #LegacyGoals I mean it. Humble cat whose work spoke louder than he did. That’s what we all need to learn from. Rest In Beats to the powerful #AllenToussaint