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Jim Gordon, Clapton Drummer and Convicted Murderer, Dies

drummer performing
(Dreamstime)

By    |   Thursday, 16 March 2023 10:58 AM EDT

Grammy-winning drummer Jim Gordon, who performed with Eric Clapton and George Harrison, and was convicted of killing his mother in 1983, has died at age 77. 

Bob Merlis, Gordon's publicist, confirmed the news Wednesday in a statement to the New York Post, saying Gordon died at the California Medical Facility in Vacaville on Monday from natural causes "after a long incarceration and lifelong battle with mental illness."

Gordon established himself in the music industry while backing the Everly Brothers, playing drums on the Beach Boys' 1966 album "Pet Sounds." He went on to tour with Clapton in 1969 and 1970 and performed with Clapton's band Derek and the Dominos, which worked on Beatles guitarist Harrison's 1970 solo album "All Things Must Pass."

Gordon also co-wrote Clapton's 1971 hit "Layla," which earned him a Grammy Award. 

In 1970, Gordon began to show violent tendencies when he punched his then-girlfriend, singer-songwriter Rita Coolidge, in a hotel, according to the Post. On June 3, 1983, he fatally attacked his 72-year-old mother, Osa Gordon, with a hammer and a knife, later saying he heard a voice inside his head telling him to kill her. 

"I had no interest in killing her," Jordan said in 1985, according to The Guardian. "I wanted to stay away from her. I had no choice. It was so matter-of-fact, like I was being guided like a zombie. She wanted me to kill her."

Gordon was diagnosed with schizophrenia after his arrest but a judge ruled he could not be found innocent by reason of insanity under the California insanity laws at the time.

Gordon died while serving out a 16 years to life prison sentence handed to him in 1984. He was denied parole 10 times, most recently in March 2018, after he reportedly declined to attend parole hearings.

Zoe Papadakis

Zoe Papadakis is a Newsmax writer based in South Africa with two decades of experience specializing in media and entertainment. She has been in the news industry as a reporter, writer and editor for newspapers, magazine and websites.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


TheWire
Grammy-winning drummer Jim Gordon, who performed with Eric Clapton and George Harrison, and was convicted of killing his mother in 1983, died at age 77. 
jim gordon, drummer, murderer, dead
302
2023-58-16
Thursday, 16 March 2023 10:58 AM
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