Tuesday, July 24, 2012

40 year Itch: Death of a Long Haired Drummer


"Bobby had the best groove of any drummer I've ever played with." -- Rick Derringer

On July 24, 1972 24-year old Bobby Ramirez had every reason in the world to celebrate. He and his buddy Jerry LaCroix were playing in one of the hottest bands in America: LaCroix, made up of former members of Edgar Winters' White Trash. They were touring the country with the Top 20 UK prog rockers Uriah Heep, their double live album with White Trash, Roadwork,  was on its way to gold and they'd just put on a stellar show that night in Chicago.

Ramirez, LaCroix and the band manager stopped at the wrong bar to celebrate. The story is that Ramirez went to the bathroom where a man, looking at Bobby's long hair, suggested maybe he'd missed the sign on the door. The ladies room was next door. When Ramirez shot back something with attitude the man punched him, drawing blood. The bar owner tried to intervene but when he refused to call the police, Ramirez followed his attacker out of the bar. LaCroix followed too. The next thing LaCroix remembers is waking up to see Bobby bloodied up and dying in the band manager's arms. His assailant had steel tipped boots and kicked Ramirez to death.

 LaCroix says when Bobby died so did the band's spirit. White Trash broke up that summer. Here's Jerry singing "Turn On Your Lovelight" with Bobby working out on the drums especially at the 3:00 mark.

Of Ramirez's drumming skills, Derringer told Modern Drummer "When I hear the recordings of our rhythm section-Bobby, me, and bassist Randy Jo Hobbs-on Edgar's Roadwork album, it blows my mind how tight we are. I miss him even now. He was also a good human being. In the future, I know we'll be grooving together for the Lord in heaven."


  1. Did they ever charge anyone with the crime ???

  2. that is what I wondered too, was anyone arrested for assaulting poor Bobby??

  3. R.I.P Bobby Ramerez, he was so good

  4. Der Drummer, das Album (Roadwork), etwas vom Grössten in der Musikgeschichte. Ich liebe ihn.

  5. ... Bobby Ramirez is my grandmother's nephew making him my first cousin once removed... and when he got murdered the family drove up from Texas and stayed with my grandparents in Gary indiana and then got the body from the chicago coroner's office morgue... my grandfather and uncles helped drive Bobby's father and Bobbies corpse back down to Texas... to quote a song it's a family affair..

    1. Omar, I was a friend of Bobby's in high school, I've trying to verify if this is the same Bobby I knew. Would love to talk with you. Thanks, Lamont. Eml: crawley.el@gmail.com.

  6. I am sorry for your lost Omar. My name is Lamont and I'm trying to determine if this is the same Bobby who spent a little time in high school in Oscoda, Michigan, around 1969. Bobby and I were friends. Anything you can do regarding answers to the above question will be greatly appreciated. I just found out about how he died a week ago. Thank you

  7. Omar and all others that new Bobby, my name is Lamont and I'm seeking to verify if this is the same Bobby Ramirez that I was friends with in High school. I would love to hear from you because any info can only be helpful. Beside you may know others to give my contact info to. Thanks, Lamont. My email: crawley.el@gmail.com

  8. Omar and any else that knew Bobby, I'm on a quest to gather as much info as possible to determine if this is the same Bobby Ramirez that I went to high school with. We were friends. You may know other family members and friends that you can give my contact info to. Thanks, Lamont--crawley.el@gmail.com.

  9. My condolences to your entire family, Omar. It’s very sad losing anyone, especially to senseless violence. Very disappointing that the person that murdered your cousin was never caught and this has been a cold case for 45+ years. The bartender and patrons at the bar that night, could’ve identified your cousin’s killer, but opted not to for fear of retaliation and that bar being under surveillance by the police. God has judged the person who committed this heinous crime.