Published Feb 28, 2011Mark Tulin, bassist for '60s psych rock pioneers the Electric Prunes and collaborator with Smashing Pumpkins main man Billy Corgan, has died at the age of 62. According to reports, the musician, who was also an avid deep sea diver, collapsed on Saturday (February 26) at the Avalon Underwater Cleanup in Catalina Island, CA, and could not be revived.
A post on the Facebook page for the USC Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber, an emergency medical facility that deals with scuba diving accidents, confirmed the tragedy over the weekend.
"It is with deep sadness and a very heavy heart that I inform you of the death of Mark Tulin. He collapsed today while helping out at the Avalon Underwater Clean-Up and had immediate response by Baywatch Avalon and Avalon Fire Department medics, but he could not be revived," the post reads. "Mark was one-of-a-kind. His energy, generosity, and spirit was unmatched."
Tulin's Electric Prunes were best known for their tripped-out psych pop gem "I Had Too Much to Dream Last Night" from 1966. A reformed Prunes were working on some new material with Corgan producing. Tulin's relationship with Corgan ran deeper, having performed on a number of newer Smashing Pumpkins tunes, as well as playing a couple gigs with the band in 2009.
A lengthy tribute to Tulin written by Corgan, posted on fellow Pumpkins collaborator Kerry Brown's blog, toasted the departed bassist.
"Mark was part of a movement of suburban kids in the mid to late '60s that changed the world with their dark musical dreaming," Corgan said of the innovator. "Words can not express how much I enjoyed creating music with him, and it was a great honor to have him play on some of these recent SP tracks; 'astral planes', 'widow wake my mind', and many others, tons of unreleased stuff. He played a long lost style that was incredibly responsive to the vocals, and to the song. A lost art."
You can read the tribute in full here.