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Scott Walker (1943–2019), pop star with the Walker Brothers

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Enigmatic singer became an influential avant-garde musician

Scott Walker was a member of the pop group The Walker Brothers who found great fame in England in the 1960s. Born Noel Engel, Scott joined The Walker Brothers and took on the name Scott Walker. The group had moderate success in the states before moving to England where they became big stars, their version of “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore,” reaching number one in the UK. Walker moved on to a solo career where he was a pioneer of baroque pop and avant-garde music, influencing many including David Bowie, Brian Eno, and Johnny Marr. He was an enigmatic figure, rarely appearing in public or giving interviews.  

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Died: Friday, March 22, 2019. (Who else died on March 22?)

Details of death: Died at the age of 76, according to his record label 4AD.

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Musicians pay tribute to Scott Walker: “So very sad to hear that Scott Walker has passed away, he was a huge influence on Radiohead and myself, showing me how i could use my voice and words. Met him once at Meltdown, such a kind gentle outsider. He will be very missed.” —Thom Yorke on Twitter

“Absolutely saddened shocked by the death of Scott Walker . He gave me so much inspiration so much I owe to him and modelled on him even down to my early S C hair cut and dark glasses . He cemented my love for Brel. He was enigmatic , mysterious and with some of his latter recordings , to me, infuriating. An absolute Musical genius , existential and intellectual and a Star right from the days of the Walker Brothers. So many of his songs will go round in my head forever. And that Voice. We lost Bowie now we’ve lost him. There is surely a crack in the Universe. Thank you Scott.” —Soft Cell singer Marc Almond on Instagram

“From pretty boy popstar in the 60s to one of David Bowie’s main inspirations, Scott Walker was completely unique. A rarity in the ecology of rock ‘n’ roll. His operatic baritone and his abstract, individualized music & lyrics will remain beautifully.” —Singer Michael Des Barres on Twitter

Full obituary: Los Angeles Times

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