The great Czech rock guitarist Radim Hladík has died at the age of 69. The one-time Prague Conservatory student was a member of the mid-1960s Prague band The Matadors with his friend Vladimír Mišík before the two later founded their best-known group, the jazz-influenced Blue (later Modrý) Effect, which Hladík led following Mišík’s departure. Radim Hladík relaunched Blue Effect in 2004 with younger musicians in 2004 and the group continued to perform until recently.
Civic Democrat deputies have proposed rock singer Vladimír Mišík and guitar player Radim Hladík for state honours. MP Walter Bartoš, who is behind the motion, suggested President Zeman should award the musicians the Czech Medal of Merit in recognition of their artistic achievements as well as their respect for freedom. Czech state honours are presented on October 28, the anniversary of Czechoslovakia’s independence; the recipients are proposed by lawmakers but the president makes the final choice.
The Matadors, one of the greatest Czech beat groups of the 1960s, only released one LP, their eponymous 1968 debut. Like many Prague bands of their era, they had a fluid membership, though the classic lineup is regarded as Radim Hladík on guitar, Viktor Sodoma on vocals, Jan “Farmer” Obermayer on electric organ, Otto Bezloja on bass and Tony Black (Miroslav Schwarz) on drums.
This edition of Music Profile is dedicated to the great Czech rock guitarist Radim Hladík. Hladík was a founder member of two of the leading Czechoslovak bands of the late 1960s, The Matadors and Blue Effect (later known as Modrý Effect) and over the years has played with a host of musicians, including folk singer Jaroslav Hutka.