Emitt Rhodes, Beloved Pop Musician, Passes at 70

Emitt Rhodes RIP - Courtesy
Emitt Rhodes RIP - Courtesy

Edited by JOHN DALY

Emitt Rhodes, whose endearing contributions to pop and power pop left a lingering impression on musicians and fans around the world, passed away at 70.

Rhodes was born in Decatur, Ill. and moved to California with his family as a youngster. Rhodes started as a teenager in the band The Merry Go Round and Palace Guard. He released five solo records, and his self-titled album received tremendous recognition. He has been referred to as “a one-man Beatles” and sadly never got the recognition he deserved.

Rhodes’ last album was in 1973 and he had been off the recording radar following a fallout with his label. His most recent record was a solo project, Rainbow Ends in 2016 (Omnivore).

He was admired by fellow artists. The Bangles covered Rhodes’ “Live,” and Fairport Convention covered “Time Will Show The Wiser.”

Rhodes saw a brief resurgence of appreciation when “Lullaby” was used in The Royal Tennebaums film which starred Owen Wilson, Gwynneth Paltrow, Ben Stiller and Gene Hackman.

Rhodes released Rainbow Ends as a collaboration with producer Chris Price, Roger Joseph Manning Jr. and Jason Falkner (Jellyfish and Beck), Fernando Perdomo, Taylor Locke of Rooney and New Pornographers’ drummer Joe Seiders. Rainbow Ends also enlists Aimee Mann, Susanna Hoffs, Jon Brion, Bleu, Nels Cline and Pat Sansone from Wilco, and   members of Brian Wilson’s band.