The Rocker Electrocuted on Stage
Leslie Harvey (1944 – 1972) was a Scottish guitarist who played for a number of bands in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Most notably the blues rock band Stone the Crows, which he had co-founded in 1969. Born in Glasgow, Harvey’s music career was full of mishaps and misfortunes, culminating with the final one that took his life. In the 1960s, Harvey was asked to the join The Animals, but turned down the opportunity to stay in his brother’s band. The Animals went on to become superstars, with hits that became classics such as House of the Rising Sun, We Gotta Get Out of This Place, and Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood. The gig with his brother’s band did not work out, so Harvey joined another band, Blues Council.
However, soon after they made their first album, the band’s tour van crashed. The lead vocalist and bassist were killed, and the survivors went their separate ways. In 1969, Harvey co-founded Stone the Crows, which steadily climbed the rock ladder. Managed by Led Zeppelin’s legendary Peter Grant, it was about to break out in 1972, fresh off a successful 1971 album, Teenage Kicks. On May 3rd, 1972, the band were preparing for a show before a crowd at the Swansea Ballroom in Swansea, Wales, when Harvey’s ill fortune struck one last time. It was a rainy day, with puddles on the stage, and he came in contact with a poorly grounded microphone to perform a sound check while tuning his guitar. Harvey touched the microphone with wet hands, and was electrocuted to death, live onstage before thousands of horrified onlookers.