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 Roger Lee Durham

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Roger Lee Durham

  • Birth 14 Feb 1946
  • Death 27 Jul 1973
  • Burial Fort Leavenworth, Leavenworth County, Kansas, USA
  • Plot Section R, site 671
  • Memorial ID 3654270

Rhythm and Blues Musician. A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Durham was a member of the popular music group, 'Bloodstone.' The group formed in Kansas City, Missouri, while the groups' members-Ronald Bell, Ron Wilson, Harold 'Ivory' Williams, Charles McCormick, Charles Love, and Willis Draffen Jr., and Durham, were in high school. Known for there different styles of music including rhythm and blues, funk, and soul, the group began as an acapella doo wop group called, 'The Sinceres,' in 1962. By 1968, the group was playing in Las Vegas, Nevada, with the likes of 'Sonny Charles & The Checkmates,' and then in Los Angeles, California, where they learned to play different instruments. There new style of sound consisting of the style of Jimi Hendrix and there percussion ideas were used in there style of doo wop and gospel. After little success in Los Angeles, California, the band went to London, England, where they teamed up with Mike Vernon, who was the founder of the Blue Horizon Record Label. The label also helped to produce such acts as Fleetwood Mac and Otis Spann. In 1973, after working with Vernon for sometime they released there first single entitled, 'Natural High,' which landed on both the R&B and pop Top Ten charts. The group continued there partnership with Vernon, who helped them release five albums, which had some Top 20 R&B hits and singles, as well as, making the Top 40. On July 27, 1973, the group were struck with a blow, when Durham was killed after he fell off a horse. A veteran of the Vietnam War, Durham had served with the United States Air Force as an Airman, and for his service, he was interred in the Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Following the tragic death of Durham, the group continued to work by doing more concerts, appearing in films such as the 1975 blaxploitation movie, "Train Ride To Hollywood," and then in the early 1980s, working with the Isley Brothers, and then releasing there last album, "We Go A Long Way Back," in 1982, which also had one of there last R&B Top Ten hits. In 1982 the group disbanded for good but the members continued on with there own things. Sadly though Willis Draffen Jr. passed away in 2002, at the age of 56. Other recordings by 'Bloodstone include, 'Little Green Apples,' 'Ran It In The Ground,' 'Sadie Mae,' 'Peter's Jones,' 'Girl (You Look So Fine),' and 'Damn That Rock & Roll: Bo Diddley/Diddley Daddy.'

Bio by: Peterborough "K"


Missouri; Airman, U.S. Air Force, Vietnam





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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 4 Mar 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 3654270
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Roger Lee Durham (14 Feb 1946–27 Jul 1973), Find A Grave Memorial no. 3654270, citing Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery, Fort Leavenworth, Leavenworth County, Kansas, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .