So Long, Leon Russell

by This Land


We’ve lost another legend. At 74, Leon Russell died in his sleep on Sunday, Nov. 13, in Nashville. Russell was an influential force in the music industry and in his home state, and he was a frequent topic of journalism published in This Land. Below, a compilation of stories we’ve published about Russell over the years.

LEON’S LAIR: Matt O’Meilia remembers the day Leon Russell moved into the Aaronson Mansion in Maple Ridge. He ought to. He threw his morning paper.

LEON RUSSELL ROAD: Lindsey Neal was there when Trenton Avenue at Third Street became, officially, Leon Russell Road.

THE MAKING OF LONGHAIR MUSIC: Steve Todoroff has been archiving Russell’s career as a studio musician, in photos, session notes, and more.

LEON’S GOT MUSSELS: Natasha Ball tells a story of the time Kathy Todoroff cooked Leon a large helping of bearded mussels—minus the beards.

OH, PAPER BOY!: Matt O’Meilia was an aspiring musician and had a neighborhood paper route. Then, a rock star moved in next door: Leon Russell.

PAST AND FUTURE SOUND: Joshua Kline revisits two pillars of Tulsa music history.

A POEM IS A NAKED PERSON: Thomas Conner explains why Les Blank’s documentary was wrapped and shelved for 40 years, per its subject, Leon Russell.