The Who’s Roger Daltrey and Blur have lead tributes to Dr Feelgood guitarist and Game of Thrones star Wilko Johnson after his
Johnson found fame in the 1970s pub-rock band, who helped pave the way for British punk, and also enjoyed a successful solo career.
Outside of music, Johnson played mute executioner Ser Ilyn Payne in George R R Martin’s HBO drama, Game of Thrones.
A statement posted to Johnson’s social media accounts said the punk rocker had died at home on Monday (November 21).
Johnson was previously diagnosed with late-stage pancreatic cancer in 2013 and was given just 10 months to live, although one year later declared he was
In a statement, Roger said: ‘More than anything Wilko wanted to be a poet. I was lucky to have known him and have him as a friend. His music lives on but there’s no escaping the final curtain this time.‘
Referencing the poem by J Milton Hayes, the musician added: ‘So it’s goodnight to Mad Carew, the uncompromising Bard of Canvey.‘
Paying tribute to him on Twitter, Graham Coxon from Blur wrote: ‘Ahh- one of my all time tele heroes.. farewell, Wilko…’
Alex Kapranos from Franz Ferdinand penned: ‘Very sad to hear Wilko Johnson has died. His unique, wired playing & stage presence thrilled & inspired many guitarists, myself included.
‘When I interviewed him a few years ago, he was bright, thoughtful & an astonishing storyteller. His presence will be felt for many more years.’
The Stranglers said: ‘Throwback Wednesday: For obvious sad reasons, a day early this week. Following today’s awful news of the passing of the legendary RnB guitar hero Wilko Johnson, here he is with his old friend & flatmate JJ a few years ago. Fly straight Wilko, fond adieu RIP x.’
Tim Burgess from The Charlatans said: ‘God speed Wilko.’
Billy Bragg said: ‘Wilko Johnson was a precursor of punk. His guitar playing was angry and angular, but his presence – twitchy, confrontational, out of control – was something we’d never beheld before in UK pop. Rotten, Strummer and Weller learned a lot from his edgy demeanor. He does it right RIP.’
The statement on Wednesday said: ‘This is the announcement we never wanted to make, and we do so, on behalf of Wilko’s family and the band, with a very heavy heart:
‘Wilko Johnson has died. He passed away at home on Monday evening, 21st November 2022.
‘Thank you for respecting Wilko’s family’s privacy at this very sad time, and thank you all for having been such a tremendous support throughout Wilko’s incredible life. RIP Wilko Johnson.’
Born on Canvey Island in Essex in 1947, Johnson recalled in his autobiography that he had a tough childhood and at aged 16, he was elated to come home from school one day to find his dad had died.
In the book, he also said he found joy in literature but, after realising he was never going to cut it as a poet, he discovered music.
Johnson graduated from Newcastle University before travelling around India, then returned to Essex to work as an English teacher.
Not long after, he formed Dr Feelgood in 1971 alongside Lee Brilleaux and John B. Sparks and went on to play with Ian Dury And The Blockheads for a spell.
Johnson then had a lengthy solo career playing with The Wilko Johnson Band.
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