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Dale Griffin (1948 - 2016)

Getty Images / Brian Cooke

Dale Griffin (1948 - 2016)

Dale Griffin, drummer and one of the founding members of the glam rock group Mott the Hoople, has died at 67, according to multiple news sources. He had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease almost a decade ago.

The group was best known for their song “All the Young Dudes,” which was written and produced by David Bowie. Bowie also sang backing vocals on the track. The song is considered a classic glam rock anthem. It came in at number 256 on Rolling Stone’s 500 greatest songs list.

The band released eight albums during their original run and they reformed to celebrate their 40th anniversary in 2009, but Griffin was too sick to participate.

He died peacefully in his sleep on Sunday night, according to Peter Purnell from Angel Air records.

He called Griffin “one of the nicest, friendly and talented men I have ever known.”

“All he ever wanted was for his beloved Mott the Hoople to reform and it was his determination that achieved that very feat in 2009 but sadly by then he was too ill to perform at the five sold-out dates – though he did join the band for encores.”

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Mott the Hoople had built up a cult following in the 1960s, but they struggled to sell records and were thinking of breaking up in 1972. Bowie convinced the band to stay together and set them up with his manager, Tony De Fries.

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Bowie wrote the song “All the Young Dudes,” which included part of his own Ziggy Stardust storyline, for Mott the Hoople. The song rejuvenated the band, but the group ended up disbanding in 1974.

Griffin was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease when the Mott the Hoople reunion was about to begin. His friend, The Pretenders drummer Martin Chambers, played the drums at the reunion, although Griffith was able to join the band on stage for encores during their performances.

Dale is survived by his long-term partner, Jean Smith.

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