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Ed Bradley, Close Friend of Buffett, Dies

November 9th, 2006

Jimmy lost a close friend today. Ed Bradley of 60 Minutes.

Bradley is survived by his wife, Patricia Blanchet, of New York. He married
Blanchet, an artist, in 2004 at their Aspen, Colorado, home with Jimmy Buffett providing the wedding music, according to a column in the Rocky Mountain News.

He introduced Jimmy onstage at the Big Apple to the Big Easy concert at Madison Square Garden.

As a jazz afficionado and lover of musical improv, he appeared on stage at the Margaritaville Cafe in New Orleans in May ’06 during Jazz Fest week. With Little Feat tackling the song on the spot, he took the mic for a sponanious rendition of his unofficial theme song…the R&B classic by the Dominoes “Sixty Minute Man” with his friend Jimmy standing nearby, beaming a grin.

Bradley, dies of Lukemia at age 65. Nov 9, 2006.

Update – From the NY Times: Buffett was with Bradley in his hospital room when he died:

Though Mr. Bradley had largely concealed his illness, he and his wife, Patricia Blanchet, had reached out in recent days to some of his closest friends — including Charlayne Hunter-Gault of National Public Radio (who traveled to his bedside from her home in South Africa) and the singer Jimmy Buffett (who rushed to New York to be with him following a concert in Hawaii).

Mr. Buffett said he told Mr. Bradley on Wednesday that “the Knicks and the Democrats won,” eliciting a smile from Mr. Bradley, who by that point could barely speak.

“I made the mistake once of letting him get onstage with my band, and he never stopped doing it,” said Mr. Buffett, who was introduced to Mr. Bradley 30 years ago in Key West, Fla., by a mutual friend, Hunter S. Thompson.

Mr. Bradley had many nicknames throughout his life, including Big Daddy, when he played defensive end and offensive tackle in the 1960s at Cheyney State College (now Cheyney University of Pennsylvania); but his favorite, Ms. Hunter-Gault and Mr. Buffett said, was Teddy Badly, which Mr. Buffett bestowed on him onstage the first time Mr. Bradley played tambourine at his side.

“Everybody in my opinion needs a little Mardi Gras in their life,” Mr. Buffett said, “and he liked to have a little more than the average person on occasion.”

“He was such a great journalist,” Mr. Buffett added, “but he still knew how to have a good time.”

Tagged in Personal/Family