Sunday Morning, April 13, 2008, Ted Nugent´s drummer/producer, Cliff Davies, passed away in Dallas, Georgia. He was 59 years old.
Cliff was best known as the drummer and producer for Ted Nugent in the 1970´s and early 1980´s when Ted was at his peak. This wasn´t a surprise. As those closest to him know, and Ted himself admitted many times during that period, Cliff is the man responsible for making Ted Nugent a household name.
Originally brought in to produce Ted by Lew Futterman in 1975 and eventually, taking over duties behind the drums. his contributions to Ted Nugent´s career cannot be ignored. He was an Unknown Hero of Rock a man who did his job but is often overlooked beyond being a name on an album jacket. However, beyond just his production credits, for example, there are many little known pieces of trivia, Cliff was the voice on the studio version of the song Stormtroopin. Derek St. Holmes who always sung the song live, didn´t particularly like the song and so Cliff stepped in to provide the studio vocal. He also co-wrote and/or arranged all of Ted Nugent´s biggest hits though given little or no credit. He didn´t need that. That was the way he was. The ultimate team player. For example, the "Bolero" section of Stranglehold was created by Cliff. He also co-wrote the song "Together" with Rob Grange from Free-For-All. Again, all of this behind the scenes and never was there any complaints about who should get credit.
After leaving Ted Nugent in the early 1980´s, Cliff spent time working as a producer for various projects including the final Grand Funk album, "What´s Funk". Eventually, however, he walked away from the industry.
In recent years, Cliff lived in the Atlanta, Georgia area. In 2005, after a brief reunion with former bandmates Rob Grange and Derek St. Holmes, he began work on the development of the Rock and Roll Remembers Foundation, a charity close to his heart. The foundation, in Cliff´s words, was a long time in coming as there was a need that needed to be filled. And so Rock and Roll Remembers was created specifically targeting those within the rock and roll industry. It´s mission was and is to aid and assist those within the rock and roll community who fall on hard times. Even though he was not financially secure himself, he generously donated his time to help this cause, something that will never be forgotten by those whom we are able to help in the future. That was the way Cliff lived. He always had time for others. His work will not be for naught and the foundation will move forward in the hopes of being able to truly help those in need the way Cliff wanted. However, there is a giant void that may never be filled.
His final production credit and recorded appearances were all to benefit Rock and Roll Remembers. As a member of the Unknown Heroes of Rock, Cliff produced a studio EP featuring himself on drums and an assortment of friends lending a hand to help raise money for the foundation. It is currently available exclusively through the foundation. (If you would like a copy, please contact Rock and Roll Remembers.) He also made his final public appearance at a benefit concert on April 5, 2008 in Fresno, California as part of the Unknown Heroes.
For those who would like to express their thoughts they may do so through the Rock and Roll Remembers Website, www.rockandrollremembers.org or via email at RRRemembers@aol.com..