Richard Finnell, Shiva’s Headband drummer, dies at 69

Richard Finnell
Richard Finnell

Richard Finnell, who played drums with pioneering Austin psychedelic rock band Shiva’s Headband in the late 1960s before embarking on a journalism career that included many years as the adviser of the University of Texas student newspaper The Daily Texan, died Saturday, Feb. 21, at his home in Austin. He was 69.

Born in McAllen, Finnell graduated from the University of Texas and was a member of Shiva’s Headband when the group recorded “Take Me to the Mountains,” a 1969 release on Capitol Records that was one of the first major-label releases to come out of Austin.

Shiva’s Headband has played occasional reunion shows in recent years, including last summer when they shared a bill with Roky Erickson on the plaza in front of the Bullock Texas State History Museum.

Survivors include his son Cory, sister Carmen F. Shinn and brother-in-law Robert Shinn. Visitation is set for Saturday, Feb. 28, from 2 to 4 p.m. at Cook Walden/Forest Oaks Funeral Home, 6300 W. William Cannon Drive. Sign the guest book for Richard Finnell here.

Author: Peter Blackstock

Music writer for the Austin American-Statesman and Twitter: @Blackstock360

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