The Quietus | News | Wilko Johnson Has Died
Photo by Leif Laaksonen
Wilko Johnson, best known as the guitarist for Dr. Feelgood, has died aged 75. A cause of death has not yet been given.
A post on Johnson’s social media accounts confirmed the news saying: “This is the announcement we never wanted to make, & we do so with a very heavy heart: Wilko Johnson has died. He passed away at home on Monday 21st November. Thank you for respecting the family’s privacy at this very sad time. RIP Wilko Johnson.”
Widely acclaimed as one of the most innovative and distinctive guitarists of his generation. He, and Dr. Feelgood, are commonly cited as one of the key influences on the British punk movement of the late 1970s.
Born in Canvey Island, Essex, Johnson formed Dr. Feelgood in 1971 alongside singer Lee Brilleaux and bassist John B. ‘Sparko’ Sparks. Drummer John ‘The Big Figure’ Martin joined shortly afterwards.
Becoming one of the most popular bands on London’s pub rock circuit, Johnson recorded three studio albums with the band, as well as the chart-topping 1976 live album Stupidity.
Johnson went on to form The Wilko Johnson Band, and also joined Ian Dury’s band The Blockheads. He also made his acting debut in 2011, appearing as Ser Ilyn Payne in Game Of Thrones.
In January 2013 he was diagnosed with late stage pancreatic cancer. At that time he told Front Row that he had been given nine or ten months to live. Describing the diagnosis as making him feel “vividly alive”, he embarked on a farewell tour, and recorded an album with Roger Daltrey called Going Back Home which was released the following year.
In 2014, while receiving the ‘Icon Award’ at the Q Awards, he revealed that after an eleven-hour operation, he was now cancer free.
This is a developing story and will be updated shortly