Gordon Lightfoot, typically referred to as Canada’s best songwriter and identified worldwide as one of many founding fathers of folk-rock, has died on the age of 84, a household consultant stated.
Lightfoot died in a Toronto hospital Monday night time, stated Victoria Lord, the musician’s longtime publicist. A reason behind dying was not instantly out there.
The musician just lately canceled all dates on his 2023 tour, citing well being considerations. Representatives for him didn’t elaborate additional on the time.
An iconic determine within the Sixties and Seventies, Lightfoot wrote many songs that transcended musical boundaries and tastes, together with The wreck of Edmund Fitzgerald, the ribbon of darkness AND Should you may learn my thoughts, amongst many, many others.
Canadian music legend Gordon Lightfoot dies
Legendary musicians resembling Elvis Presley, Johnny Money, Hank Williams Jr., Bob Dylan and Barbra Streisand, to call however a couple of, have recorded Lightfoots songs to nice acclaim, and he has been broadly revered within the music trade.
Robbie Robertson of The Band referred to as Lightfoot a nationwide treasure, and Dylan himself stated he wished Lightfoot’s songs may final without end.
“We’ve got misplaced one in every of our best songwriters,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wrote on Twitter after information of Lightfoot’s dying surfaced. He supplied his condolences to the musician’s household, associates and followers world wide.
“Gordon Lightfoot captured the spirit of our nation in his music and, in doing so, helped form Canada’s sonic panorama. Might his music proceed to encourage future generations and should his legacy dwell on without end.”
Born Gordon Meredith Lightfoot, Jr. in Orillia, Ontario on November 17, 1938, he was a pure musical expertise from an early age. His mom recognized his reward as early as grade 4, when Lightfoot sang an Irish lullaby to his whole faculty over the PA system.
As soon as he entered highschool, Lightfoot was capable of hone his expertise and taught himself to play people guitar. Selecting to not attend faculty in Canada, Lightfoot moved to California in 1958 and studied composition and jazz orchestration at Westlake Faculty of Music in Hollywood.
Trudeau Pays Tribute to Gordon Lightfoot: ‘An Excellent Canadian Icon’
After making ends meet writing and producing business jingles, Lightfoot, a real Canadian boy, determined he missed his dwelling nation an excessive amount of and moved again north of the border in 1960. He hasn’t been away since, persevering with to work within the U.S. and Europe, touring there when crucial, however Canada has all the time been his dwelling.
Settling in Toronto, Lightfoot shortly discovered himself getting observed. He has carried out with The Swinging Eight on CBC Nation Hoedown and recorded his first regional hit, (Bear in mind me) I am the one one, in 1962. After a brief stint within the UK as a visitor on the BBC Nation and western presentreturned to Canada and made an look on the Mariposa Folks Competition in 1964.
Growing a popularity within the trade, Lightfoot signed with United Artists in 1965 and launched I am not saying as a single. Appeared on Tonight’s present with Johnny Carson and carried out on the Newport Folks Competition, additional establishing his title on the music scene. Not lengthy after, he recorded his first album, Gentle footed!which featured hit songs Early morning rain AND To like me.
Unknowingly, Lightfoot had set a restrict: He rose to prominence as a Canadian artist with out capitulating and transferring to the USA, a feat not generally seen. The CBC commissioned him to write down THE Canadian Railroad Trilogy in 1967 to have fun Canada’s centennial, one other main challenge solidifying its standing in Canadian music historical past.
He hasn’t averted controversy both. She recorded a tune referred to as Black day in July, referring to the Detroit race riots of 1967, and plenty of U.S. states pulled it from their radio rotations. In response, Lightfoot said that radio station managers cared extra about taking part in songs “that make folks comfortable” as a substitute of songs “that make folks suppose”. When United Artists didn’t again up his view of him, he defected to Warner Bros. Music.
As soon as at Warner Bros. in 1970, Lightfoot achieved a gold file Should you may learn my thoughts. The tune’s success propelled Lightfoot to the heights of stardom, and over the subsequent decade, he recorded a collection of albums that additional elevated his notoriety.
Lightfoot continued to provide hit songs into the Eighties and Nineties, although clearly as he received older (and a prognosis of Bells’ palsy within the Seventies) he diminished live performance appearances because the years went on. Surprisingly, even within the 90s, he was averaging 50 reveals a yr.
All through his life, Lightfoot was a heavy drinker and smoker, though he gave up alcohol in 1982 after being informed by a physician he would develop cirrhosis except he give up at the moment.
It was going to kill me, truly, Lightfoot stated in an interview with Larry Wayne Clark. I used to be about to have cirrhosis. So I heard about a physician and I went to him and, within the very first session, he made me promise to not drink once more.
Gordon Lightfoot information once more
In 2002, Lightfoot suffered intense abdomen ache and, after being rushed to the hospital, was discovered to have a ruptured stomach aortic aneurysm. Subsequently, he was in a coma for six weeks and needed to bear a tracheostomy, together with 4 different surgical procedures. Nonetheless, after his restoration, he continued to write down and carry out music.
In 2006, he suffered a small stroke in the midst of a efficiency, which impacted the usage of his proper hand. However as with most issues in Lightfoot’s life, she persevered and ultimately regained full use of her appendix, returning to the stage lower than a yr later.
Lightfoot was the sufferer of an web dying hoax in 2010, when a CTV reporter posted on social media that the musician was useless. He heard the information of his dying on the radio on his approach dwelling. He laughed and stated in an interview that he was doing nicely.
“All the pieces is ok,” he informed the CP24 information company on the time. “I do not know the place it comes from, it appears to be like a bit like a hoax. I used to be fairly shocked to listen to that myself, it feels good.
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In a profession that spanned greater than 5 a long time, Lightfoot left a legacy that will likely be practically unimaginable to surpass. In 2015, his hometown of Orillia honored him with a four-foot-tall bronze sculpture of a cross-legged Lightfoot taking part in a guitar, and plenty of Canadians make a pilgrimage to the location to thank one in every of this nation’s finest songwriters.
In March 2020, Lightfoot was launched Solo an album that featured no different musicians and would find yourself being his final. It was her twenty first studio album, launched greater than 54 years after her debut.
Lightfoot leaves behind six kids.
A number of notable figures not solely in Canada however world wide have taken to social media to pay tribute to Lightfoot and his legacy.
Conservative chief Pierre Poilievre referred to as him “Canada’s Bard”.
With International Information recordsdata Chris Jancelewicz