News & Reviews: Breaking News

John Renbourn Passes Away

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The guitarist leaves behind a musical legacy that includes ground-breaking solo work, iconic recordings with Bert Jansch and Pentangle, and a legion of fingerstylists that he influenced.

by Dan Gabel
March 26, 2015

John Renbourn performs "Great Dream from Heaven" in Italy in 2005. Video from VanDeFields.

John Renbourn, the hugely influential guitarist and songwriter, died today at the age of 70. According to the Hearld Scotland, Renbourn was found in his home in Hawick, Scotland after he failed to show up at a concert yesterday evening at The Ferry in Glasgow.

Renbourn's work included solo albums like Sir John Alot, The Lady and the Unicorn, and The Guitar of John Renbourn; a long-time collaboration with Wizz Jones; a duo album with Bert Jansch (Bert and John); and several albums as a founding member of the British folk/rock/jazz group Pentangle, which also included Jansch, Danny Thompson, Jacqui McShee, and Terry Cox.

Renbourn's prowess as a fingerstylist had a huge impact on guitarists who followed. He recorded several guitar instruction and performance videos with Stefan Grossman, which highlight Renbourn's wide-ranging skills in Celtic-influenced guitar, blues, and Renaissance music.

Peghead Nation joins the rest of the folk music world in offering our condolences to Renbourn's family and friends.

Tags: Guitar
Category: News & Reviews

Comments and Discussion

Posted by Alex De Grassi on
RIP John,

I was fortunate to play concerts and conduct workshops w/ John over the years, as well as host him at my home. He, Bert Jansch, and Petangle were seminal influences in my development at a guitarist in my teen years. He was also very enthusiastic and gracious in promoting my early recordings, and he became not only a major influence on my playing but a good friend as well. He was a scholarly folk musician, an amazing and hugely influential guitarist and a gentle soul. He'll be greatly missed, but his legacy will live on forever as one of the greats!

With love and respect
Alex de Grassi

Posted by Allan Tall on
Just awful news. Thanks for all you left us, John. :(
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