The entertainment world has lost many talents in 2022, and February has only begun. In early January we mourned several pop culture figures (Betty White, Peter Bogdanovich, Ronnie Spector, Bob Saget, Sidney Poitier, Joan Didion, Eve Babitz), but we also celebrated them and re-lived their brightest moments via the web.

With “Rest in Stream,” a new feature looking back at departed figures and cultural icons online, we continue to remember those who recently passed away by spotlighting worthy links to their work (or surveys of their work) and appearances. Departing late January/mid-February, the following game-changers left behind a lot to remember them by, and we are very grateful for that. Click links for more.

 

 

MARTY ROBERTS (of Marty & Elayne)

Marty Roberts, the local legend, who along with his wife Elayne, brought jazzy standards to famed Los Feliz bar and lounge The Dresden Room for over 40 years (usually for six nights a week) passed away on Jan. 18 due to cancer. He was 89. The pair’s charisma and chemistry made them favorites with multiple generations of bar hoppers, so much so that when Roberts’ daughter announced his passing on Facebook last month, many felt like their own family member -akin to a beloved grandfather or uncle– had died, even those who didn’t actually know him. We did and he was so full of style and musical swagger, even in recent years. Working next door to the Dresden for decades (at Y-Que Trading Post) our connection to the pair was particularly personal, as their shows served as frequent after work wind-downs– and this was before their appearance in Swingers made it hard to get a seat in the bar. Speaking of Swingers, star Vince Vaughn recently revealed that he had been a fan of Marty & Elayne well before he was famous and it was in fact his recommendation that led to their appearance in the classic L.A. film. Marty may be gone, but for Angelenos, he’ll be hitting the cymbals to “Staying Alive” forever in our hearts.

 

ANDRE LEON TALLEY

The Vogue fashion critic died on Jan. 18 of a heart attack. A grand presence both literally and figuratively, Talley’s take on style, art and life, helped elevate both the magazine and fashion industry. He also brought diversity to the fashion world via his coverage of up and coming BIPOC creators and his front row presence at the biggest runway spectacles. He made cameos as himself in Sex and the City (naturally) and later Empire. He was also one of the more biting judges on Tyra Banks’ America’s Next Top Model (in 2003) and later brought his wit and pizzazz to docs such as The September Issue. But it’s the exploration of his personal life journey, The Gospel According to Andre, that truly captured his fabulousness, ferocity and impact.

 

MEATLOAF

Meat Loaf (whose birth name was Marvin Lee Aday) soared like a bat out of earth into the next realm on Jan. 20, reportedly after a battle with COVID-19. The actor and singer best known for the operatic rock hit “Bat Out of Hell” was also well known as Eddie in The Rocky Horror Picture Show (both the original live production at The Roxy in L.A. and the iconic film with Tim Curry). The name “Eddie” trended on Twitter the day he passed. His biggest single “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That),” remains one of the most popular numbers in music, used in commercials and soundtracks. As an actor, you can see him in Wayne’s World and Fight Club, to name a few.

 

LOUIE ANDERSON

Comic actor Louie Anderson died on January 21 at the age of 68, due to complications related to cancer according to his publicist. He was 68. You can see many clips of him on various talk shows over the years, as well as his regular gig hosting Family Feud in the late ’90s. He’s guested on countless TV sitcoms and is seen in films including Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Coming to America. More recently his role as Zach Galifianakis’ mother on FX’s Baskets won raves for its dark and poignant gender reversed portrayal, scoring him an Emmy. If you missed the show, watch it now.

 

THIERRY MUGLER

Manfred Thierry Mugler, passed away on Jan. 24 at the age of 73, due to what his team called “natural causes.” The French visionary influenced avante garde style on the catwalk and in mainstream pop culture via his work seen on stars such as Madonna, Lady Gaga and Kim Kardashian. He was 73. Known for sculptural shapes, unconventional materials and often flamboyant costume-like styling, Mugler’s futuristic fashion designs were unrivaled in originality. Most of us could never afford his looks, but we could purchase a bit of his luxe vision via his perfume brand– his popular Angel fragrance was and still is, a top scent with the fashionista set. Watching his runway videos on YouTube is a treat, and they serve as major inspiration for anyone in fashion, but it’s his unforgettable work on George Michael’s “Too Funky” video that arguably set the template for haute looks in music vids for years to come.

 

HOWARD HESSEMAN

Actor Howard Hesseman, best known as snazzy DJ Johnny Fever on the classic comedy WKRP in Cincinnati died at the age of 81 on Jan. 30 due to complications from colon surgery. Gen Xers and Boomers probably remember him best for his sitcom appearances, but he also turned in some killer Saturday Night Live hosting stints in his heyday and had winning bit parts in fun faves like This is Spinal Tap, My Chaffeur, The Rocker and more.

 

BETTY DAVIS

The soul queen known for provocative lyrics and stage presence died on Feb. 9 at the age of 77. She was the second wife of Miles Davis, and though she never achieved his level of fame, her empowered spirit, music and image was an obvious influence to so many performers who came after her. The full doc about her life is now available for free on YouTube (see above).

 

IVAN REITMAN

Ivan Reitman, one of Hollywood’s most successful producers and directors died at the age of 75 on Valentine’s Day.  From Ghostbusters to Animal House, Space Jam to Up In The Air, there’s a lot to enjoy if you’re looking to do a retrospective screening of his work. We’d rec some less obvious choices, like films he produced including Heavy Metal, Howard Stern’s Private Parts, and Old School. The man had an astounding career and luckily, his son is following in his footsteps, most recently with his well received film update, Ghostbusters Afterlife.

TERRI KING

On a personal note, we must mention the passing of L.A. designer Terri King, who made stage clothing for a spectacular laundry list of rock n’ roll luminaries during her storied career. We were lucky enough to see and be a part of her world firsthand. We worked as her assistant for several years during her heyday, at her store on Melrose Ave., and on music videos and her runway events. Her client list included Ozzy Osbourne, Bon Jovi, Metallica, Nine Inch Nails, Motley Crue, Marilyn Manson, Keanu Reeves, Weird Al, Pauley Perrette and on and on. She passed away on Jan. 5 after a long battle with cancer. As is often the case with behind the scenes figures in entertainment, her passing wasn’t highly publicized save for Perrette’s social media posts, but her work was all over MTV when they actually played music videos and you can see many of her designs –some seen above– on You Tube to this day.

LA Weekly