Today (July 27, 2013) marks the first anniversary of the death of Darryl Cotton.
Darryl died of liver cancer after only being diagnosed two months earlier. He was 62-years old.
Darryl Cotton first rose to fame in Australia as a member of 60s band Zoot. Zoot was a super-group in reverse. All four members, Cotton with Rick Springfield, Beeb Birtles and Rick Brewer, became even more famous after the band broke up in their next projects including Little River Band, The Ferrets, Rick’s solo and acting career and Darryl’s solo and television career.
Zoot’s biggest hit was the acid rock version of The Beatles’ ‘Eleanor Rigby’ (no. 4, 1970). Darryl also had a solo hit with ‘Same Old Girl’ (no. 6, 1980).
After Zoot, Darryl acted in the Aussie soap The Young Doctors for one season. Coincidentally, Rick Springfield went on to earn a name in US television in the soap opera General Hospital.
In 1972, Birtles and Cotton formed Frieze and released the album ‘1972 B.C.’ Beeb then formed Mississippi and Little River Band.
Darryl then moved to the USA and formed Friends with Michael Lloyd and Steve Kipner. Kipner became one of the world’s most successful songwriters writing ‘Physical’ for Olivia Newton-John, ‘Hard Habit To Break’ for Chicago and more recently ‘Stole’ for Destiny’s Child and ‘Breakeven’ for The Script.
Cotton and Lloyd then formed Cotton, Lloyd and Christian with Chris Christian and made the Billboard Hot 100 with their version of ‘I Go To Pieces’.
As a songwriter, Darryl wrote for Donny and Marie, Engelbert Humperdinck and The New Seekers.
When he returned to Australia in 1978 he released the solo single ‘Don’t Let It Get To You’. His biggest hit ‘Same Old Girl’ was co-written with Chris Christian.
Darryl then went into theatre scoring the lead role in ‘Joseph and the Technicolour Dreamcoat’ (1983) and then the host of ‘The Early Bird Show’ (channel 10, 1985-1989).
In 1996, Darryl teamed up with Ronnie Burns and Russell Morris to form Burns, Cotton & Morris. Ronnie left in 2000 and was replaced with Jim Keays for Cotton, Keays & Morris. Cotton, Keays & Morris became one of Australia’s most popular live acts and toured constantly for the next decade.
In 2011, Rick Springfield put Zoot back together with Darryl, Rick and Beeb. It was their first time back together in 40 years. Zoot perform a residency on the Rick Springfield & Friends cruise in the Caribbean in November, 2011. It would be the final shows for Darryl. A CD and DVD of the concert will be released in August.
Darryl is survived by wife Cheryl, daughter Amy and son Tim.
R.I.P. Darryl Cotton 1949-2012.