JAN BERRY — A SELECTED TIMELINE
By Mark A. Moore
Author of Dead Man’s Curve: The Rock ‘n’ Roll Life of Jan Berry
• December 1990 — Jan produced recording sessions for his newest compositions. Jan & Dean continued to tour throughout the 1990s.
• September 1, 1991 — Jan married Gertud Maria Filip (“Gertie”), who hailed from Ontario, Canada, at the Stardust Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dean Torrence served as Best Man. Jan and Gertie met at Lulu’s Roadhouse, Canada’s biggest night club, in Kitchener, Ontario.
• March-July 1996 — One Way Records re-issued the original stereo mixes of Jan & Dean’s albums for Liberty Records, 1962-1966.
Save For A Rainy Day
• June 1996 — Sundazed Records officially released Dean Torrence’s Jan & Dean album Save For A Rainy Day, which had originally been sidelined twice by Screen Gems in 1966 and 1967 for breach of contract.
• June 1997 — One Way Records released Jan’s solo album Second Wave. The bulk of the recording for this album occurred between December 1988 and August 1993. It featured a mix of new original compositions and covers of previous hits (the latter recommended to Jan by Lou Adler). Produced by Jan Berry with Associate Producer Rob Kuropatwa.
• August 1997 — People magazine published a feature titled “Surf City Survivor: Thirty-One Years after a Horrific Car Wreck, Jan Berry Cuts a Solo CD.”
VH1’s Behind the Music
• August 1998 — Jan & Dean were the subject of an episode of VH1’s biography series Behind the Music.
• July 2002 — Jan & Dean were the subject of an episode of A&E’s Biography titled “Jan & Dean: The Other Beach Boys.” This program featured Jan’s final major television interview.
• November 2003 — The PBS network aired a special titled At the Drive-In, which featured Jan’s final television appearance.
Jan & Dean’s Final Concert Performance
• March 6, 2004 — Jan & Dean performed their final concert in El Cajon, California.
• March 26, 2004 — His health having declined during the latter half of the 1990s, Jan passed away at age 62, one week shy of his 63rd birthday. Jan suffered a seizure at his home on Westgate Avenue in Los Angeles. Seizures were a fairly common occurrence for Jan, a byproduct of his brain injury, and he had been taking the drug Dilantin since 1966 to help prevent them. Following the seizure he suffered a heart attack and could not be revived. He was pronounced dead at UCLA Medical Center. The official cause of death was severe heart disease. However, the lingering effects from Jan’s 1966 car accident were cited as a contributing factor.
Jan’s “Celebration of Life”
• April 18, 2004 — Family, friends, and associates held a “Celebration of Life” for Jan, a rousing music-filled party at the Roxy Theatre on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. A Memorial Edition re-issue of Jan’s solo album Second Wave, printed at Rainbow Records in Santa Monica with a 16-page booklet, was given to each person who attended. Graphic artist Mark London designed a Memorial Card for the event. Celebrity attendees included Dean Torrence, Lou Adler (who facilitated the event), Nancy Sinatra, Lloyd Thaxton, Pamela Des Barres, and others. Attendees of note in Jan’s life and career included Jill Gibson, Don Altfeld, Don Peake, Brian Bruderlin, and Paul Morantz, among many others.
“Dead Man’s Curve” in the Grammy Hall of Fame
• 2008 — Jan & Dean’s classic hit “Dead Man’s Curve,” co-written by Jan Berry, was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Established by the Recording Academy’s National Trustees in 1973, the Grammy Hall of Fame honors songs of qualitative or lasting historical significance that are at least 25 years old.
Carnival of Sound
• March 2010 — Rhino Handmade officially released Jan & Dean’s unissued album Carnival of Sound, which had been shelved by Warner Bros. prior to release in 1968.
Life can have a higher meaning . . .
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