Published Nov 10, 2015Influential R&B artist Allen Toussaint has died at the age of 77. The New Orleans-born singer, songwriter and producer passed away early this morning (November 10) while on tour in Spain. He performed his final show in Bilbao on Sunday evening (November 8).
In recent news, Toussaint had been confirmed to play a benefit concert on December 8 alongside Paul Simon for New Orleans Artists Against Hunger and Homelessness — a non-profit organization co-founded by Toussaint and Aaron Neville in 1985 to give back to the city of New Orleans.
Toussaint was born in New Orleans in 1938 and got his musical start playing regularly in his hometown with a group of musicians known as the Dew Drop Set. He worked as an apprentice to Dave Batholomew and a session musician, eventually finding work as a songwriter and producer for labels like Minit and Instant.
He wrote hits for artists like Irma Thomas, Ernie K-Doe, and Benny Spellman with many of his songs going on to get covered by the likes of the Rolling Stones, Otis Redding, the Yardbirds, Warren Zevon, Ringo Starr and the Who.
He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998. Toussaint is survived by his children, Clarence and Alison, and several grandchildren.