The Shapiro Files

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Farewell, Billy

Keyboard legend Billy Preston passed away yesterday. Preston’s hits include “Nothing from Nothing,” “With You I’m Born Again,” and “Outta-Space” and he was the songwriting genius behind Joe Cocker’s smash hit “You Are So Beautiful.” Beatles fans perhaps best know Billy as the “fifth Beatle” on the Beatles’ final two albums, Let it Be and Abbey Road, and as an essential contributor on several Beatles solo projects. A Beatles fanatic myself, I’ve always found Preston’s exquisite organ runs on the extended Abbey Road jam/freak-out session “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)” to be the highlight of that particular recording. A brilliant musician and a true artist, Billy will be greatly missed.


  • Steve -

    I am familiar with Billy as most musicians probably are..."You are so beautiful" is a genius piece of work...

    Thanks for the note Cuz...

    The Egel Nest

    By Blogger Bradley Egel, at 6/08/2006 12:12 AM  

  • Brad, thanks for your comments. Yep, although Billy had his hit songs, he was really a musician's musician. Also, though I didn't really mention it in my posting, he was known in the industry as a truly nice guy. It was solely due to his presence that The Beatles actually started acting civilly toward each other during the initially acrimonious Let it Be sessions. That alone is pretty remarkable!

    By Blogger Steve Shapiro, at 6/09/2006 10:15 AM  

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