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Hagbardr Warren Zevon Terminally Ill (29) Warren Zevon Terminally Ill 12 Sep 02


Sad news.

L.A. Rock Musician Warren Zevon Terminally Ill Thu Sep 12, 2:43 PM ET

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Acerbic singer-songwriter Warren Zevon, best known for the hit song "Werewolves of London," has been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, his publicist said on Thursday.

"I'm OK with it, but it'll be a drag if I don't make it 'till the next James Bond movie comes out," Zevon, 55, joked in a statement, released by spokeswoman Diana Baron. (The next Bond film, titled "Die Another Day," comes out on Nov. 22.)

Zevon is spending his remaining weeks with his two adult children, son Jordan and daughter Ariel. He will shortly head to a Los Angeles studio to record a batch of songs, some written after he received his diagnosis last month, Baron said.

Although "Werewolves of London" was a top 10 hit in 1978, the Chicago-born Zevon spent his 33-year recording career as a cult artist, unleashing his sardonic hooks and observant lyrics on a series of acclaimed albums. He also worked with the likes of Jackson Browne, the Everly Brothers and members of R.E.M ( news - web sites).

Less prolific in recent years, Zevon released a new album in 2001, "My Ride's Here," featuring musical contributions from Irish poet Paul Muldoon, Hunter S. Thompson and novelist Carl Hiaasen, Zevon's fishing buddy.

He quit smoking about eight years ago, but his logo was a skull wearing sunglasses with a cigarette hanging out.

Raised in Arizona and California, Zevon studied music briefly after meeting Igor Stravinsky at high school. He taught himself to play guitar, started writing songs and playing in school bands.

His debut album, "Wanted -- Dead or Alive," came out in 1969. After it failed to make a splash, Zevon wrote jingles for wine ads and worked as a pianist and bandleader for the Everly Brothers, both together and separately.

His career received a boost in the mid-1970s when Linda Ronstadt recorded some of his songs, including the 1978 hit "Poor Poor Pitiful Me." His friend Jackson Browne produced Zevon's 1976 self-titled release, which won critical raves.

"Werewolves of London," about a "hairy-handed gent" with a taste for beef chow mein and pina coladas, appeared on his 1978 follow-up, "Excitable Boy."

A bout with alcoholism stalled Zevon's career until he released two albums in 1980. Zevon addressed his rehabilitation experience in such songs as "Detox Mansion" and "Trouble Waiting to Happen" on the 1987 release "Sentimental Hygiene," on which three members of then-cult band R.E.M. appeared.


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