British Singer Songwriter John Martyn Dead At 60

British singer-songwriter John Martyn dead at 60.

Cult British singer songwriter John Martyn, a contemporary of Eric Clapton known for his fusion of folk and blues guitar, has died, it was announced on his website on Thursday.

Martyn, who only a few weeks ago was honoured with an Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II in this year’s New Year honours list, was 60.

“With heavy heart and an unbearable sense of loss we must announce that John died this morning,” the online announcement said, without giving the cause of death.

Martyn, whose real name was Iain David McGeachy, was born in New Malden, southwest of London, in 1948 but grew up in Glasgow, brought up by his grandmother.

He released his debut album “London Conversation” in October 1967 and made another 20 studio albums in a career which saw him work with musicians such as Clapton, Genesis star Phil Collins and Pink Floyd frontman David Gilmour.

His most well known album was probably 1973’s “Solid Air,” which included the song “May You Never,” later covered by Clapton and said to have inspired Irish mega rockers U2.

Martyn, who was known for living the full rock and roll lifestyle, had a leg amputated below the knee in 2003 as the result of a burst cyst.

Collins paid tribute to him, saying: “John’s passing is terribly, terribly sad. I had worked with and known him since the late 1970s and he was a great friend.

“He was uncompromising, which made him infuriating to some people, but he was unique and we’ll never see the likes of him again. I loved him dearly and will miss him very much.”

On the Net: John Martyn’s website:

AFP News
2 February 2009