Chris Whitley


Chris Whitley, 45, a singer-songwriter who oscillated between roots rock-and-roll, blues and alt-rock, died Nov. 20 in Houston. He had lung cancer, according to his record label, Messenger Records.

"Dirt Floor" was Mr. Whitley's 1998 album. He recorded 11 albums since his 1991 debut, "Living With the Law," including this year's "Soft Dangerous Shores."

Although born in Houston, he spent time in Germany, New York, Louisiana and other locations. His musical styles also wandered, touching on everything from rock and blues to electronica and jazz. James King

Opera Singer

James King, 80, an American tenor whose vibrant, powerful voice made him a favorite in leading roles on opera stages around the world during the 1960s and 1970s, died Nov. 20 in Naples, Fla., after a heart attack.

Mr. King, born in Dodge City, Kan., made his professional debut as Don Jose in Bizet's "Carmen" with the San Francisco Opera, and rose to international prominence in 1961 singing the role of Cavaradossi in Puccini's "Tosca" at Florence's Teatro della Pergola.

He won his greatest renown in the German repertory, specializing in the operas of Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss.

He scored one of his greatest triumphs in 1968 singing the role of Siegmund at London's Royal Opera House opposite soprano Gwyneth Jones in Wagner's "Die Walkuere," part of a "Ring" cycle production conducted by Georg Solti.

At the Metropolitan Opera, he sang in 113 performances over 30 years, beginning with his debut in 1966 as Florestan and ending with the character role of Aegisth in Strauss's "Elektra."

He taught music and voice at Indiana University from 1984 until 2002.

Stelios Papadimitriou

Aide to Aristotle Onassis

Stelios Papadimitriou, 75, a lawyer and a close aide of Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis's who clashed bitterly with his employer's former son-in-law over management of the magnate's wealth, died Nov. 23 in Athens. He had lung cancer.

Mr. Papadimitriou, born in Alexandria, Egypt, served as personal lawyer and chief executive of Onassis's shipping business and was honorary chairman of the Alexander S. Onassis Foundation.

Aristotle Onassis died in 1975, and his daughter, Christina, died in 1988 at age 37, a year after she divorced her French husband, Thierry Roussel.

Mr. Papadimitriou fought bitter court battles with Roussel over management of the vast fortune. The fight spilled over to include Athina Roussel, who inherited an estimated $2.7 billion of her grandfather's fortune on her 18th birthday in January 2002.

Aristotle Onassis -- the "Golden Greek" who married Jacqueline Kennedy in 1968 -- died two years after a 1973 plane crash that killed his son, Alexander, after whom the foundation is named.

Onassis's fortune was divided two ways: Athina's inheritance from her mother and a foundation that controls the shipping business and a charitable trust.

Singer-songwriter Chris Whitley recorded 11 albums since his 1991 debut, "Living With the Law," including this year's "Soft Dangerous Shores."