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Robert Palmer dies

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Robert Palmer has died of a heart attack in Paris. He was 54. The man had a great set of pipes and will be missed by the entire rock world.

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About Marty Dodge

  • RIP, oh, smooth one.

  • Roger Denman

    I knew Robert Palmer since 1980. I met him through drumming for him in concert. When Donnie Wynn was not available, I would be contacted on occasion. Robert and I were friendly since our first meeting. Robert really could sing. What was great about Robert was that even live his voice was great. That can not be said about all singers, unfortunately. Robert was a natural. Robert really had a connection with R & B. If you did not know better you might think a black man was singing. Robert’s musical heroes were Otis Redding, Ike Turner, Marvin Gaye and of course, Muddy Waters. He loved BB King, too, and on more than one occasion threatened to buy “Lucille” off him. My heart went out to Geraldine Edwards, Robert’s girlfriend when he died. Robert had been in love with her for many years. Geraldine was the woman Almost Famous was written about. Robert had actually proposed to Geraldine in 1978, but Geraldine declined because she was dating Eric Clapton at the time and was living with Eric Clapton in upstate New York in his mansion which Eric had named “The Abbey” because it was a former monastery. Prior to Robert’s death, he was planning on going back into the studio to start work on his upcoming recording. He had put Misha Schneider on keyboards, Tina Ann Hart on backing vocals, she was the woman who cleaned up the backing vocals on Drive after Mary Ambrose, the amatuer, made a mess of things, and Carl Carlton on guitar, naturally. Yours truly was going to be doing the drumming. Robert was ready to get into the studio, I can tell you that. He was really experiencing a creative resurgence, that is the only way I can describe it. FYI, Robert was in the process of buying Compendium Records before he died. He told me that everything was going well and right on schedule. He was ready to become an entrepneur. He would have been great at it. I still think of Robert as do his friends. As a person, he could not be topped. May he RIP.

  • Melinda Kunkle

    I knew Robert Palmer since 1975 when I contributed some Violin work to his song “You Overwhelm me.” He really could sing. Robert’s voice was not engineered, it was natural. Anyone who saw him live was never dissapointed. I remember Robert telling me about one of his impromptu performances at the House of Blues in Hollywood. How it came about was that Robert’s girlfriend, Geraldine Edwards, asked Robert if he could introduce her to Chaka Khan. She was her favorite R & B singer, and Robert had done a duet of “Moonlight” with her in 2001. Geraldine was turning forty-three years old that year and Robert asked her what she would like for her birthday. Geraldine said “an introduction to Chaka Khan.” She really did not expect Robert to do this for her, but he surprised her and did. Robert said Chaka was an angel about the whole thing. Geraldine was thrilled when she got to meet Chaka and the two hit it off. The three spend hours partying together, when Geraldine told Chaka to let her know when she would be performing in San Diego so she could be the first to get a ticket. Chaka told her that she could do better than that. She knew the then manager of the House of Blues and told him she would like to make a surprise appearance that night in conjunction with Robert Palmer. The manager made the arrangements. Robert, Chaka and Geraldine showed up about 10:30 that night dressed to the nines, and got a round of applause as they entered the building. Robert and Chaka were invited onstage where Robert backed Chaka on piano and Chaka performed three numbers. They got a standing ovation and Robert said the set just flowed. Chaka forced Geraldine onstage to play tamborine with the back up singers. Everybody had a great time. Robert was one of those people who was always prepared and unflappable. He enjoyed a challenge. May he RIP.

  • Rufus

    That was a cool comment by Robert Palmer’s friend Melinda Kunkle. I was a fan of Robert Palmer’s and am a fan of Chaka Khans’. I would have liked to have been at the House of Blues that night. Another beautiful lady that Palmer sang with from time to time was the great Brenda Russell. That woman can sing. Palmer was the man. May he rest in peace.

  • Just as Robert Palmer was apparently addicted to love – and who knows what else – some people appear to be addicted to him.

    This may or may not explain why the comments from Roger Denman, Melinda Kunkle and Rufus all come from the same IP address…

    Christopher Rose
    Blogcritics Comments Editor

  • Anonymous

    Good try, Mr. Rose. Blogcritics comments Editor is Marty Dodge.

  • Anonymous, here is a link to the list of Blogcritics Editors so you can inform yourself as to who our staff are.

  • Waldo

    Er… Right Rose, sure. Whatever you say. Wow.

  • RIP Robert

    Honestly, what is with the slanderous comments that Robert Palmer’s personal life is receiving after his death? It is written in articles throughout the late 1970s-2003 in clear enough detail (even with Robert’s nature to avoid openly discussing his personal life) that he was married ONCE to Susan Thatcher for approximately 20 years which culminated in a divorce around 1992-1993. Robert ONLY had two children in Jim and Jane, not five as has been reported by others in the social media sphere.

    Geraldine Edwards was NOT affiliated with Robert Palmer at the time of his death. Palmer’s partner was Mary Ambrose for approximately 10 years. IT IS REPORTED IN NEARLY EVERY SINGLE NEWSPAPER AROUND THE WORLD AT THE TIME OF HIS DEATH! Seriously, these type of comments that are clearly slandering the integrity of not only Robert Palmer, however Mary Ambrose and Geraldine Edwards should be taken off this website. It lacks any form of accuracy and has NEVER been reported in any official media to date. Until such clarification has occurred (if it ever will), this needs to stop immediately.

    If anyone has any doubts, read through the myriad of articles on RobertPalmerOverBlog (french/english website dedicated to Robert Palmer) and browse through the articles about him that date over a 30-year period. It is apparent that Robert was married ONCE and only had TWO children.


  • John Austin

    My name is John Austin. I was Robert Palmer’s road manager for many years. I worked for him from 1974 to the mid-eighties. We were also friends throughout his lifetime. My birthday was only ten days before Robert’s and we were born in the same year. We were close and stayed in contact until his death. Before I am dismissed as some nut who is just writing in to create trouble on this Web site, I would like to qualify my status. I was the road manager for The Guess Who, Chicago, Bachman Turner Overdrive and a few other bands over the years.

    In fact I worked for Show-Co/Clair Brothers until my retirement.

    In response to the comment from the individual billing themselves as Robert Palmer RIP, I am sorry to tell you but you are wrong.

    Regarding Geraldine Edwards, I can conclusively state here or in a court of law or virtually anywhere that Geraldine Edwards was definintely “affiliated” with Robert Palmer at the time of his death. Robert told myself and many others that he had proposed to Geraldine Edwards in early 2003. He did give her a ruby engagement ring, which I saw with my own eyes. I had the opportunity to see the ring when Robert invited me to holiday with him in July of 2003. I have had the pleasure of knowing Geraldine Edwards since 1976 and she joined me and Robert as she had accrued some vacation time from her job which was with the State Attorney Generals Office, by the way. I laughed a little when I saw the word “affiliated” used in the way it was. I saw Robert as a man, not an organization. At any rate, yes Geraldine Edwards was in the picture in a big way. Condolences were given to Geraldine Edwards after Robert’s death by John Taylor, Andy Taylor, Eric Clapton, Chris Blackwell, Gordon Sumner and many others.

    Robert was married twice, and the reason I know this is because I was friends with his first wife, Shelly. When Robert was touring with Little Feat a lot in the seventies, Shelly would join him often. I got to know her and she was and is a lovely woman. She and Robert did in fact have three children together, two sons and one daughter. They divorced in 1978. Quite a few people remember Shelly, including Phil Rauls, Chris Blackwell, members of Little Feat, Jack Bruce, Keith Harlech, and in short a large number of Robert’s friends and acquaintances. Robert married Sue Palmer in 1979 and they divorced in 1999 after having two children.

    Robert was not in an exclusive relationship with Mary Ambrose, a woman I never met, for a ten-year time period. He did date her on and off, however, during the time that Mary Ambrose dated Robert she also had two sons, born in 2001 and 2002. Neither belonged to Robert. I am not trying to upset anybody here or to offend anyone, but Robert did undergo a vasectomy in 1982.

    In no article did Robert ever state that he was only married once. He only once made a statement that he was more or less married from the age of twenty-one which was true. Certain reporters made that statement but Robert never did. What Robert meant was that he was married consecutivley from the age of twenty-one forwards, to two women.

    As far as the worldwide reports you are referring to, you have to consider the source. The initial reports given to the worldwide AP and Reuters were provided by Mick Carter, Robert’s former manager. Robert had fired Mick Carter in September of 2003, but since Carter was the first person to discover that Robert Palmer had died, he followed through with giving the initial reports first. I am not trying to become obnoxious or spread rumors, but Robert did tell me that Carter fathered Mary Ambrose’s first son, born in 2001. Nobody was surprised when Carter reported Mary Ambrose as Robert’s companion as Carter was married at the time. He was and is very close to Mary Ambrose by all accounts.

    Jack Bruce contacted certain members of the press after Mick Carter’s initial reports to the AP and Reuters and asked them to interview Geraldine Edwards to correct the record. Geraldine Edwards and Jack Bruce were friends since 1976. When the reporters contacted Geraldine she declined their offers to interview her, stating that she would prefer to leave matters as they were at the moment. She did not want a salacious scandal erupting after Robert’s death eclipsing the memory of Robert so soon after his passing. To this day, she will not grant an interview regarding the missreports, and she has been asked to do so on numerous occasions. Nobody knows why Carter chose to say that Robert had only been married once, and that he only had two children. Only Carter would know why he made that statement to the press.

    You might also be careful about using the word “slander” in connection with Geraldine Edwards. She is a legal professional and has been for over thirty years. Her husband is an attorney, and she does own a law practice. In addition to which the legal interpretation of the word slander means verbally spreading rumors. I suspect you were looking for the word “libel” which refers legally to written statements that are false and malignant. In any event, neither of those words apply to Geraldine Edwards and her relationship with the late Robert Palmer.

    So I doubt that people are going to “immediately” stop writing about this subject to suit you.

    I only agree with you on one point. I can speak for Geraldine Edwards when I say that she would be glad to see her name removed from this site. On more than one occasion she has had to have items removed from the internet concerning her. She does believe in freedom of speech and knows that people are entitled to their opinions, but I am sure she would prefer that you don’t refer to her in a knowing way as if you truly know anything about the situation at hand.

    My advice is that you should not loose sleep over people you do not know. It really does not get you anywhere.

    Robert’s friends and family members speaking about him and vounteering their opinions on the subject of him is one thing, but an ill-informed stranger hypothosizing about him is another matter entirely.

    May Robert RIP.