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View Full Version : I Lost a Lifelong Friend Yesterday


kcfanintitanhell
12-10-2005, 05:52 PM
I lost a lifelong friend yesterday. Some of the musicians on CP may know this guy, especially some of the drummers. We played together growing up in South Dakota, and shared a house for several years when we moved to LA. Besides being a wonderful drummer, he was an outstanding person. Don't let Richard Pryor steal your wallet on the way through the gates, dude.
RIP Mark.

http://www.jethrotull.com/news/markcraneyobit.cfm

siberian khatru
12-10-2005, 05:54 PM
Hmm, he was a friend of Eddie Jobson's. Cool. I like Eddie's work.

Sorry for your loss.

Halfcan
12-10-2005, 06:19 PM
That sucks-I lost my Uncle Bobby in Florida yesterday-a great guy.

kcfanintitanhell
12-10-2005, 06:20 PM
Eddie is a good guy also. Met him a couple times through Mark.
Mark also played drums on the Gino Vanelli "Brother to Brother" album back in 19, what was it, 78 or 79? Which was, IMHO, given the fairly limited technology at their disposal, was a hell of an album.

Mr. Kotter
12-10-2005, 09:53 PM
Glad you found the info you were looking for. I'm sorry for you loss, man. Life is way too short. :shake:

chagrin
12-10-2005, 10:40 PM
Halfcan - Condolences to you dude
kcfanintitanhell - Condolences as well

The Earth skips a beat everytime a good Drummer returns home.
I am a mucisian as well, not active but a drummer for the better part of 20 years.

Rain Man
12-10-2005, 10:47 PM
You hate to see old friends go. Condolences.

Archie F. Swin
12-10-2005, 10:56 PM
Funny, this is the 3rd message board obit I've seen on Mark. I've been a drummer for about 20 years and I dont recall a hearing a whole lot of buzz on this fella. If there's one thing know It's if you can play for Jethro Tull you've got serious skillz. Mark seems to have been liked and respected by many fellow drummers and others in the biz. God bless kcfanin.... Sorry for your loss.

kcfanintitanhell
12-10-2005, 11:13 PM
Glad you found the info you were looking for. I'm sorry for you loss, man. Life is way too short. :shake:
Thanks for supplying me with the Argus Leaders obits-it's kinda funny that I was able to get the info from the Tull website before his hometown newspaper....oh well... :rolleyes:

kregger
12-11-2005, 12:56 AM
A loss to all prog rock fans. Thanks for the link, I hadn't been to the Tull site in a couple of days. My condolences on the passing of your buddy.

greg63
12-11-2005, 02:40 AM
kcfanintitanhell and Halfcan,
Condolences to both of you, it's tuff to lose friends and loved ones especially this time of year.

Rausch
12-11-2005, 03:06 AM
Sorry to hear about your loss.

In a twist of Irony we had the games/music guy in the shop today and a buddy of mine saw Aqualung and demanded he put in in there. He put enough free songs on the box to play that whole album.

Very, VERY good stuff...

Earthling
12-11-2005, 05:02 AM
Too bad...Good friends are hard to find and leave an emptyness in your heart when they pass on. My condolences.

Over-Head
12-11-2005, 05:57 AM
Don't be sad, hell, he's up there right now bashing away on a set of Pearl Refrence series getting pointers from Keith Moon, Cozzey Powell, and John Bohnam.
I'll bet if you listen real close you can hear Randy Rhoads, Jimi Hendrix, and Stevie Ray Vaughn warming up for the gig. :thumb:

On a serious note, sorry for your loss.

Rausch
12-11-2005, 06:00 AM
Don't be sad, hell, he's up there right now bashing away on a set of Pearl Refrence series getting pointers from Keith Moon, Cozzey Powell, and John Bohnam.
I'll bet if you listen real close you can hear Randy Rhoads, Jimi Hendrix, and Stevie Ray Vaughn warming up for the gig. :thumb:

The great gig in the sky.

Odds are he's feeling sorry for you right now.

While this is little consolation, do what he'd do for you in the same situation and never forget him.

That's all any of us can ask for... :)

Mr. Kotter
12-11-2005, 09:19 AM
Thanks for supplying me with the Argus Leaders obits-it's kinda funny that I was able to get the info from the Tull website before his hometown newspaper....oh well... :rolleyes:

I wonder if he has family still in the area? I think obits come mainly from family in the area submitting them....:shrug:

I did, however, do another search and came up with this:

Mark Craney (http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_action=doc&p_docid=10E6D289FA120338&p_docnum=1&p_theme=gannett&s_site=argusleader&p_product=SALB)

December 6, 2005
Section: Life
Page: 1D


Sioux Falls native, noted drummer, dies
Staff
Staff

One of Sioux Falls' most successful, but also relatively unknown, musicians has died.

Mark Craney, 53, died from pneumonia on Nov. 26 in Los Angeles. The drummer had fought a long battle with diabetes that required dialysis and two kidney transplants.

A Sioux Falls native and Lincoln High graduate who moved to Los Angeles, Craney quietly rose to notability in the international music scene after gigs with Jean Luc Ponty and Sioux City native Tommy Bolin.

His most notable experiences were recording the album "A" and touring with Jethro Tull and Tower of Power in the 1980s. Complications from diabetes forced him to retire in 1996.

Mr. Kotter
12-15-2005, 10:08 PM
Hey, man....I dug around and found this; I hope this was more what you were looking for. Sorry I missed it the first time around....but with 4 young kids, I don't read the paper much:

http://www.argusleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20051208/COLUMNISTS04/512080342/1061

Late musician was unsung hero for city
By Robert Morast
rmorast@argusleader.com

December 8, 2005, 2:55 am

Mark Craney, probably Sioux Falls' most successful and accomplished musician, died Nov. 26 from pneumonia in Los Angeles. He was 53 and spent most of his life battling diabetes.

This is sad news. But perhaps even sadder is the fact that, despite playing with such world famous artists like Jethro Tull and Jeff Beck, practically no one in Sioux Falls was aware of him.

Even worse is that I, supposedly up on the local scene, didn't hear about Craney's passing until a week after his death. It's probably the way Craney wanted it.

Here was a local boy who toured the world with one of the most popular bands of the '70s - albeit in the '80s. And, was able to sustain a nice living as a full-time musician for nearly 30 years - until diabetes sidelined him in 1996.

Yet, when people list local musical heroes, Craney's name typically isn't mentioned.

"He wasn't one to live in the past. He was humble and never really tooted his own horn," says Al Berven, a drummer and Sioux Falls Music employee who admired and eventually befriended Craney. "I want to put a plaque on the wall so somebody my age, or younger, knows who he was."

As it stands now, about the only people who recognize Craney are the older local musicians.

"He was a phenomenal drummer," says Rob Joyce, executive director of the Sioux Falls Jazz and Blues Society. "At his peak, he was probably one of the top drummers in Los Angeles."

Not bad, and maybe not an exaggeration loaded with local pride. Aside from being tight and creative, Craney was as flexible as Plastic Man. He could easily play a thick rock beat or lay down some tricky, off-beat jazz rhythms.

Yeah, he was good. But few can explain how this Sioux Falls kid went from Lincoln High to laying down Ian Anderson's backbeat.

"His motto was, 'let things happen,' " Berven says.

Apparently, that's what he did.

After playing in various local bands like Zero Ted and Rushmore (which included Rocky Grace, a Huron native who co-wrote "Rocky Mountain Way" with Joe Walsh), Craney moved to the mountains of Colorado to play in the Heartland Rhythm Section with Sioux Falls guitarist Dan Donahue before moving to L.A. in 1975.

A friend of Craney's since second grade, Donahue was with Craney when his diabetes was discovered - in seventh grade - and in the studio when Craney played on Gino Vanelli's "Brother to Brother" album.

But before Vanelli came calling, Craney had built a résumé as the drummer for jazz fusion artist Jean Luc Ponty and later for Tommy Bolin, the Sioux City guitar phenom.

In an autobiography on the Web, Craney wrote that the night Bolin died from a drug overdose in Miami, on Dec. 4, 1976, he was touring with British guitar god Jeff Beck.

Later, while working on a solo album for Eddie Jobson in New York, Craney was called in to play for Tull's Ian Anderson on his solo record which eventually evolved into Tull's "A" album.

Craney toured with the Tull in the early '80s, but after the band decided to take a break, he moved back to Sioux Falls. It didn't last long as Craney relocated to L.A. again in '83 and toured with with Tower of Power for a couple years. He had to quit in '86 when his kidneys failed and forced him onto dialysis.

After a kidney transplant, some rehab, and help from his friends, Craney returned to drumming. In 1993, he played Tull's 25th anniversary reunion before recording albums with Dweezil Zappa and Eric Burdon. A tour with Burdon followed, but Craney quit when finding dialysis centers became too difficult.

"He made it to 53, but the last five, six years were pretty intense," Donahue says.

In August, a stroke stole his ability to swallow. Though Craney, somewhat amazingly, regained that and his ability to speak, he couldn't shake the pneumonia.

Though Craney may still be a relative unknown after his death, he won't be forgotten by Anderson who dedicated the 2003 remastered re-release of "A" to Craney. Here's hoping he's pounding a snare drum somewhere right now.

Robert Morast is a terrible drummer. He can be reached at 331-2313 or rmorast@argusleader.com.

kcfanintitanhell
12-23-2005, 05:36 PM
I just thought I would post this footnote for anyone who may be interested. Over the course of the following week after hearing about Mark's passing, I re-connected with all the members of the original band that spent the years travelling and playing in the upper Midwest, who are now scattered all over, but most of whom continue to play (the guitarist is currently touring with Bette Midler), and we have discovered that Mark laid down 13 drum tracks in a studio in LA with no accompanying instruments or music whatsoever. He also has a bunch of lyrics that he wrote with Alex Ligertwood, Santana's singer from the late 80's to early 90's. So we are going to attempt to incorporate Mark's drum tracks to music, using he and Alex's lyrics into a group of songs that we will try and construct and shape with wav files travelling back and forth across the country.
If we get what we want we'll convene in a studio centrally located in late '06 and record an album, which will be our final tribute to our good friend. And, best of all, he gets to play on it too.
I hope we can get er done-I haven't seen any of these guys in over 20 years-I imagine the first 3 days of the sessions will probably be nothing more than consuming vast amounts of alcohol and whatnot :p then getting down to business.
Should be fun, if we can make it happen.