Now, those are the blues

JIM SLOTEK

, Last Updated: 4:38 PM ET

Tragic enough that not one, but two great Downchild Blues Band vocalists died within a few months of each other. But a mixup on the evening news made the events even weirder.

 When original blues brother Richard "Hock" Walsh died on New Year's Eve, CITY-TV ran an obit, but mistakenly ran footage of the band featuring Hock's successor as lead singer, Tony Flaim, and identifying him as Hock.

 Flaim, the band's booming vocalist through the '70s and '80s (and six albums), then died March 10 of a heart attack. His funeral last week brought the city's blues community out en masse.

 A story making the rounds of said community is that Flaim saw his "obit" on CITY and considered it an omen. But Dave Glover -- a.k.a. Big Daddy G. -- who was recording with Flaim at the time of his death, says, "Tony and I talked almost every day and I can definitely tell you he wasn't 'spooked' by the mistake. It was just a pain in the ass for him with people calling his house asking, 'What happened to Tony?' People are turning a dumb screwup into a voodoo or omen thing."

 What's important, says Glover, is to remember, "The man could sing! Aside from Dutch Mason, there are no more 'legendary' blues singers left in this country."


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