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Bluesman, Voice-Over Actor John Baldry Dies

Long John Baldry, a British blues-rock singer who helped start the careers of the Rolling Stones, Rod Stewart, Elton John and other British stars, died of a severe chest infection on July 21, 2005, in Vancouver, British Columbia, reports THE NEW YORK TIMES. He was 64.

For the animation community, Baldry will be remembered for this voice-over work, which began in the early 1980s. He was heard on numerous television commercials in Canada, narrated on Disney children's albums and was the voice of Robotnik, the villain on the popular SONIC THE HEDGEHOG videogame and cartoon series. His other TV work included CONAN, REBOOT and SABRINA THE ANIMATED SERIES.

In 1998 he was nominated for a Grammy Award for best spoken-word album for children for THE ORIGINAL STORY OF WINNIE-THE-POOH.

A central figure in the British rock movement of the early 1960s, Baldry whose nickname referred to height of 6-foot-7 frame sang and played guitar alongside some of the biggest stars of the era, often as a coach and bandleader. Among those who played with him early in their careers were Mick Jagger and Charlie Watts of the Rolling Stones, Jimmy Page of the Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker of Cream, Rod Stewart and Sir Elton John.

He is survived by his partner, Felix Rexach; a brother, Roger; and a sister, Margaret.

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