Chris Bell was one of the unsung heroes of American pop music. Despite a life marked by tragedy and a career crippled by commercial indifference, the singer/songwriter's slim body of recorded work proved massively influential on the generations of indie rockers who emerged in his wake. Born January 12, 1951 in Memphis, Tennessee, Bell grew up enveloped by the city's indigenous soul sounds -- typified by the prodigious output of the Stax label -- but his first love was the music of the British Invasion. Inspired by the Beatles, he took up the guitar in his early teens. Within a few years, Bell was writing and performing his own songs with friends Richard Rosebrough and Terry Manning, but his Anglo-pop leanings set him squarely outside of the Memphis musical community.