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Industry Vet Barney Kilpatrick Takes His Own Life

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NEW ORLEANS (CelebrityAccess) — Barney Kilpatrick, a veteran music industry executive with a career that spanned radio, artist management and recorded music, has died.

According to a statement from his publicist, Kilpatrick suffered from depression and anxiety for many years and took his own life.

A native of Texas, Kilpatrick was raised in New Orleans, earning a degree in journalism from Louisiana State University and then a law degree from Tulane.

While still in high school, and later, as a college student, Kilpatrick served as on-air talent for at WTUL, Tulane’s college radio station and later on commercial stations, including as Barney K at WTIX-AM, one of the first top 40 stations in the U.S. and WLTS in New Orleans.

After graduation, he parleyed a love of roots music into a role with the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

In 1985, he relocated from New Orleans to Dallas for a radio promotion job at IRS Records, followed by Warner Bros, where he handled radio promotion.

In 2000, amid a rapidly changing label landscape, Kilpatrick landed at Capricorn Records in Atlanta. However, the label was sold to Volcano Records that same year and Kilpatrick took over artist management and booking for the von Trapp Family Singers for several years.

He then launched his own management company, Rockit Artist Management, and launched a label, Rattlesby Records, before taking on a leadership role at Skyline Artists, where he oversaw the Symphony Division.

More recently, Barney and his wife Valerie had returned home to New Orleans along with his music management services, working with Nashville-based manager Neal Spielberg, with whom he co-managed country artist Blane Howard, Southern jam band Perpetual Groove, and bluegrass band Nefesh Mountain.


Barney is survived by his wife of 34 years, Valerie, and their four children – Mary, Katherine, Jimmy, and Charlie.

A memorial for Barney will be held in New Orleans on Saturday, December 11, at Jacob Schoen & Son Funeral Home. Visitation with family and friends will begin at noon, followed by a brief service at 2:00 pm Central Time. For those unable to attend, there will be a livestream available at this link: https://admin.oneroomstreaming.com/email/view/a9cb03a997

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