|The King of Swing Dal Richards died just days before his 98th birthday|
|Richards performing with Lorraine McAllister in 1958|
Richards was born and raised in Vancouver, and was named after the doctor who delivered him, Dr Dallas Perry.
When Richards was a boy he fell while holding his slingshot and the prong gouged out his left eye. It was replaced by a glass eye, but to recuperate he had to spend long periods in the dark and he became despondent.
Dr Perry suggested the boy learn an instrument and he took to the clarinet. The rest, literally is history. It was during this time he became exposed to jazz and was hooked.
By the end of high school he had his own band and played his first New Year's Eve gig in 1935 and never really stopped working in one capacity or another.
His secret to long life?
"Well, if you find something you like doing in life, pursue it with your heart. That is what I've done with music. I found that it was my love, so I enveloped my life totally."
Richards leaves behind his wife Muriel, and a daughter Dallas with singer Lorraine McAllister, who died in 1984.
Thank you Dal for your boundless energy, optimism and humour, and of course your fabulous music!