Scott Walker, who was the lead singer of the ’60s pop group The Walker Brothers before going on to have an influential solo career, has died at age 76.
Walker’s passing was announced in a statement on the website of his record label, 4 AD.
Born Noel Scott Engel in Ohio, Walker teamed up with singer/guitarist John Maus to form The Walker Brothers in Los Angeles in 1964 with drummer Al “Tiny” Schneider, who soon was replaced by Gary Leeds. All three members took on the surname Walker, although they weren’t related.
Powered by Scott’s powerful baritone croon, the band found huge success after relocating to the U.K. Their biggest hits were 1965’s “Make It Easy on Yourself” and 1966’s “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore,” which both topped the U.K. singles chart and reached the top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100.
In 1967, Scott released his debut solo album, Scott, featuring songs with poetic, often surreal lyrics backed with dramatic string arrangements. After The Walker Brothers disbanded in 1968, Scott focused fully on his solo career.
Between 1967 and 1975, Scott released 10 solo albums, then reunited with The Walker Brothers for a few more albums. He returned to his solo career in 1984 with the avant-garde Climate of Hunter, and released a sporadic series of experimental albums after that. His final project was the score of the 2018 film Vox Lux, which starred Natalie Portman as an avant-garde pop star.
Among the artists who’ve cited Scott as an influence: David Bowie, Roxy Music‘s Bryan Ferry, Radiohead‘s Thom Yorke, and Soft Cell‘s Marc Almond.
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