Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Monday, April 12, 2010 11:13 am


Filed under: Sad — Lex @ 11:13 am
Tags: ,

The late Alex Chilton, lead singer of the Boxtops and Big Star, had no health insurance, a fact that may have contributed to his death:

At least twice in the week before his fatal heart attack, Chilton experienced shortness of breath and chills while cutting grass. But he did not seek medical attention, [wife Laura] Kersting said, in part because he had no health insurance.

On the morning of March 17, she went to work. Chilton called her after suffering another episode; she arrived home before the ambulance, and drove him to the hospital. He lost consciousness a block from the emergency room, after urging Kersting to run the red light.

UPDATE: And right on cue:


  1. Most of my dad’s uncles died of heart attacks in their 50s, so we all tried to solve the puzzle. De-stress life. Exercise. Eat right. Check the old blood pressure. It is sad that this guy did not have insurance, but why not? Wikipedia said he had a full career and lots of travel and gigs. Also a wife and two kids. Was he poor?

    Comment by Liz Reiman — Tuesday, April 13, 2010 2:51 pm @ 2:51 pm

  2. Was he poor? It wouldn’t surprise me. For all his influence, Chilton never sold that many records. On top of that, you can’t even begin to imagine how predatory the record bidness was back in Chilton’s day. And most tours were money-losers, loss leaders intended to promote album sales, not be profitable in their own right. (That’s not as common as it once was, but it’s still pretty common.)

    Things didn’t seriously start to change until relatively recently (the Police turning down tons of tour support from A&M [and renting amplifiers, etc., locally in each town they played] in favor of more money on the back end; REM fighting and winning to hold on to the copyrights to their own songs).

    Comment by Lex — Tuesday, April 13, 2010 3:22 pm @ 3:22 pm

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