Anniversary of Del Shannon's Violent Death

02/08/2011
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(Gibson) At just after 11:30 p.m. on this day in 1990, rock and roll innovator Del Shannon was found dead, slumped in a rocking chair in the den of his new Santa Clarita Valley home. A .22-caliber rifle was found next to Shannon's body. It looked like suicide to Deputy Bill Linnemeyer of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

Shannon's manager Dan Bourgoise, said the singer had been depressed lately, that he was concerned about his new home and had been suffering form the flu for several weeks.

At the same time, Del Shannon's career was on the up after a decade-long slump. He'd been working with Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne and was rumored to be replacing Roy Orbison, who had died, in the Traveling Wilburys supergroup. He'd recently played a sell-out show on February 3 at a Buddy Holly tribute concert in Clear Lake, Iowa, before heading back to his new house in California. more on this story

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