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Claude Nobs Dies: Montreux Jazz Festival Co-Founder Passes After Ski Accident Coma

Claude Nobs

Claude Nobs, the founder and general manager of the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, has died after spending several weeks in a coma following a skiing accident. He was 76.

According to CNN, Nobs had taken a nasty spill while cross-country skiing in the mountains overlooking Montreux on December 24.

Although he managed to get up and return home on his own, reports say Claude later fainted and had to be flown by helicopter to a hospital in Lausanne, where he underwent surgery and slipped into a coma.

Nobs passed away on Thursday, January 10.

Nicknamed "Funky Claude" by the band Deep Purple, Nobs kicked off the first Montreux Jazz Festival in 1967 while working at the Swiss resort's tourism office, attracting some of the world's biggest stars, including including Miles Davis (who got on particularly well with Nobs), Frank Zappa, Led Zeppelin, Weather Report, John McLaughlin, Santana and Van Morrison, among hundreds of others.

The Guardian notes that despite undergoing heart surgery some six years ago, Nobs stayed on as festival director, a position he shared during the 1990s with American producer Quincy Jones, who returns each year from Los Angeles to introduce new talent.

Following news of Nobs' death, Jones took to Twitter to pay tribute.

"There are no words to express the deep sorrow and hollowness in my heart that comes with news of Claude Nobs," he tweeted.

From: The Inquisitr

At a 28 February 1970 performance in Copenhagen, the band was billed as "The Nobs", a playful pun on the name of their European promoter, Claude Nobs, as the result of a threat of legal action from aristocrat Frau Eva von Zeppelin, descendent of Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin creator of the Zeppelin aircraft, over use of the 'Zeppelin' name.

From: Wikipedia
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This Month in
Led Zeppelin History

February 7, 1962 - Deborah Bonham, sister to John, was born in Redditch, Worcestershire, England
February 23, 1966 - Warren Grant, son of Peter, was born.
February xx, 1969 - Led Zeppelin enters the Billboard Top 40
February 16, 1969 - Led Zeppelin wrap up their first American tour in Baltimore, MD.
February 07, 1970 - Edinburgh gig cancelled after Plant receives facial injuries in a car accident
February 28, 1970 - The band performs as "The Nobs" in Copenhagen after threat of legal action from Countess Von Zeppelin
February xx, 1971 - John Paul Jones involved in legal issues regarding a musician who shares the same name
February xx, 1971 - Overdubs for the fourth album are recorded at Island Studios
February 14, 1972 - The band is refused admission into Singapore due to their long hair
February 16, 1972 - The Australian tour begins in Perth
February 21, 1972 - Led Zeppelin: Rock and Roll b/w Four Sticks (Atlantic 45-2865) 45 single is released in the US.
February xx, 1973 - The band makes final preparations for the European tour
February 16, 1973 - The release date for Houses Of The Holy is pushed back due to some sleeve problems
February xx, 1974 - Sessions for Physical Graffiti continue
February 14, 1974 - Page, Plant and Bonham attend a Roy Harper concert
February 04, 1975 - Zeppelin perform a last minute show at Nassau Coliseum to accomodate fans after being banned in Boston
February 24, 1975 - Physical Graffiti finally issued worldwide to phenomenal sales
February xx, 1976 - Media reports that Zeppelin are due to release an album entitled Obelisk
February xx, 1977 - Robert contracts a bout of tonsillitis postponing the American tour
February xx, 1978 - Robert Plant helps produce a record for punk band Dansette Damage
February 16, 1978 - The cases against Bonham, Cole & Grant stemming from the Oakland incident are heard and all receive suspended prison sentences and fines
February xx, 1979 - Although absent from the US stage or market, Led Zeppelin rank best in many music magazine categories
February xx, 1979 - Mixing sessions for In Through The Out Door take place at Polar Studios. Rumors fly of a European tour
February 03, 1980 - Robert joins Dave Edmund’s Rockpile at the Birmingham Top Rank
February 13, 2005 - Led Zeppelin receives a Grammy for Lifetime Achievment.
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