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Biloxi man had connection to Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

COURTESY SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE 
 Walter "Dutch" Dutchover, second from left, and his band Crystal Garden are featured in a book that was accepted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
COURTESY SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE Walter "Dutch" Dutchover, second from left, and his band Crystal Garden are featured in a book that was accepted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

BILOXI -- Walter "Dutch" Dutchover loved music. His wife, Jennifer, said his passion for music started when he was a child living in San Francisco's East Bay.

"He was always telling these great stories about seeing Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix," Jennifer Dutchover said. "Dutch said he even saw Chicago open up for Jimi Hendrix and he said people were booing Chicago because they didn't understand why a band like Chicago was opening for Hendrix."

Walter Dutchover, who had moved to Biloxi a few years ago, died Friday at 62. A memorial service is planned for 11 a.m. Saturday at the Howard Avenue chapel of Bradford-O'Keefe Funeral Home.

Nicknamed "Dutch" by a kindergarten teacher, Walter Dutchover began playing guitar at an early age. He joined the East Bay band Crystal Garden at age 11 and would stay with them until he 17.

"He left the band because some of the guys started getting into drugs and he never did drugs," his wife said.

Crystal Garden released a single, "Peach Fuzz Forest," that was moderately successful. The band was mentioned in Bruce Tashler's book, "The San Francisco East Bay Scene: Garage Bands From the '60s Then and Now," which was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio.

"He was so proud of that book" Jennifer Dutchover said. "It's now in its second edition."

She said her husband continued performing after he moved to Biloxi.

"He loved to do karaoke," he said. "He did karaoke all over the Coast at places like Shaggy's and the VFW. He just loved singing and he loved music. He was an amazing man. He was very caring and he loved Biloxi."

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