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Red Kelly Dies

Bassist Red Kelly died on Wednesday June 9, 2004 at age 76 of complications from various ailments. Kelly, who was born Thomas Raymond Kelly, spent three decades of his life on the road with musicians like Tony Bennett, Count Basie, Harry James, Buddy Rich and Duke Ellington.

Not only an acclaimed musician, Kelly was also well-known for his stint in politics as a Washington state gubernatorial candidate in the 1970s when he ran under his self-conceived OWL party. OWL-which combined the slogans “Out With Logic” and “On With Lunacy”-was a pseudo-serious independent political party that managed to attract eight percent of the votes in 1976 when Kelly ran for governor.

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