Acoustic legend Renbourn dies
tHE HuGELY iNFLuENtiaL acoustic folk guitarist and singer-songwriter John renbourn has died from a heart attack, aged 70, at his home in the Scottish borders. He was due to play a gig in Glasgow and didn’t show up, so friends and colleagues contacted the police, who found him the following morning.
renbourn was best known for his collaborations with fellow guitarist bert Jansch, as well as his pioneering work with the folk band Pentangle, who blended folk with other genres including jazz and rock. Pentangle were a considerable influence on musicians as diverse as folkrockers Fairport Convertion and Pete townshend, who described them as “fresh and innovative”. in 2007, renbourn and other members of Pentangle were presented with a Lifetime achievement award by david attenborough at the bbC radio 2 Folk awards and acknowledged as one of the most influential groups of the late 20th Century.
renbourn also has a successful career as a solo artist, releasing many critically-acclaimed albums including John renbourn (1965), the Lady and the unicorn (1970), the Guitar of John renbourn (1976, 2005), a Maid in bedlam (1977), the Enchanted Garden (1980), Folk blues of John renbourn (1988), will the Circle be unbroken (1995) and Palermo Snow (2011).
renbourn was recently interviewed for bbC 6 Music by dJ Cerys Matthews, who tweeted: “So sorry and sad to hear of John renbourn’s passing. a loving, lovely man. riP John. it was an honour and pleasure to meet you”. Fellow acoustic guitarist Gordon Giltrap said: “i’m still numb from the news that my old friend John renbourn has passed away”. and novelist ian rankin added: “ach, and now John renbourn has died. what a guitarist...”
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Renbourn was best known for his work with Bert Jansch and also the pioneering folk band Pentangle.
John Renbourn: influenced many folk and rock players