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Darrell Sweet 4/1999

Darrell SweetApril 30, 1999 – Darrell Antony Sweet (Nazareth) was born in Bournemouth, England on May 16, 1947.  His early music years were spent playing with the Burntisland pipe band; he was also a member of the Shadettes.

Sweet was a founding member of the Scottish Hard Rock band Nazareth in 1968, playing drums with them until his death in 1999. He played on Nazareth’s first 29 albums.

The band moved to London in 1970 and released their eponymous debut album in 1971. After their second album Exercises, in 1972, Nazareth supported Deep Purple on tour, and issued the Roger Glover produced, Razamanaz, in early 1973.

This collection spawned two UK Top Ten hits, “Broken Down Angel” and “Bad Bad Boy”. This was followed by Loud ‘N’ Proud in late 1973, which contained another hit single with a hard-rocking cover of Joni Mitchell’s song “This Flight Tonight”. Then came Rampant, in 1974, that was equally successful with the single, “Shanghai’ed in Shanghai”.

Their 1975 album, Hair of the Dog, title track, popularly though incorrectly, known as “Son Of A Bitch”, became a staple of 1970s rock radio. The American version of the album included the The Everly Brothers, and Roy Orbison, the melodic ballad “Love Hurts”, that was released as a hit single in the UK and in the U.S., where it went platinum.

The track became the band’s only U.S. Top Ten hit and it spent a record-breaking 60 weeks on the Norwegian chart. Darrell toured, performed and recorded with Nazareth for 31 years and performed on 29 albums (including all bests of) before his untimely death.

Sweet died of a heart attack in 1999, as the band prepared to set out on the second leg of its U.S. tour in support of their latest album, Boogaloo. The band had arrived at Indiana’s New Albany Amphitheater when Darrell began to feel ill, within minutes he had gone into cardiac arrest and was taken to Floyd Memorial Hospital in New Albany, where doctors pronounced him dead at age 51.


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