Leon Russell’s 1970 “Roll Away The Stone” Animated Promo Film!

By on April 2, 2015

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Happy Birthday today to Leon Russell, born Claude Russell Bridges on April 2, 1942, in Lawton, Oklahoma!

Russell began playing piano at the age of four. Russell attended Will Rogers High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma. At this time he was already performing at Tulsa nightclubs.

After moving to Los Angeles, he became a session musician, working as a pianist on the recordings of many notable musical artists from the 1960s. By the late 1960s, Russell diversified, becoming successful as an arranger and songwriter. As a musician, he worked his way up from gigs as a sideman to well known performers.

By 1970 he had graduated to solo recording artist, although he never ended his previous roles within the music industry.

Russell was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame on Monday, March 14, 2011. In June, 2011, Leon Russell was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

(h/t Wikipedia)

Here’s a groovy animated promo for Leon Russell’s song “Roll Away The Stone,” which appeared on his first solo album in 1970. The animation is by Brian Zick, a southern California graphic artist known for his striking pop art illustrations.

Watch it over on Youtube!


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About Bryan Thomas

Bryan Thomas has been a freelancing writer/critic for All Music Guide, and a contributor to Launch, Music Connection, Big Takeover and numerous other publications and entertainment websites, blogs and zines, most of them long gone. He's written more than sixty sets of liner notes. He’s also worked for over twenty years at mostly reissue record labels -- prior to that he worked in bookstores and record stores, going all the way back to the original vinyl daze. He lives in the Miracle Mile neighborhood of Los Angeles, CA.