David Becker, Getty Images Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell recently revealed…
- Posted on Mar 18th 2010 8:31AM by Farah Ishaq
Suffering from an autoimmune disease, Gillett suffered a heart attack last week, before passing away at a London hospital, his family revealed.
Gillett, raised in Stockton-on-Tees, began his career as a music journalist writing for New Society, Anarchy and Shout before getting a weekly column for Record Mirror in the late 60s. His first book 'The Sound of the City' -- which looked in-depth at rock 'n' roll's first 15 years -- was published in 1970 and won him great acclaim both in the UK and the US.
An ear for discovering talented musicians though, is what was key for Gillett's Radio London 'Honky Tonk' shows from the 70s on. He aired demos by the likes of Dire Straits and Elvis Costello whilst bringing artists like Youssou N'Dour and Salif Keita to British audiences.
Part of his varied genius and passion for music also saw Gillett manage Ian Dury's first band Kilburn and the High Roads in the mid-70s and also set up Oval, a publishing company. Hits for Oval included Paul Hardcastle's number one record '19' and Lene Lovich's 'Lucky Number.'
Gillett is survived by his wife Buffy, two daughters Suzy and Jody, and a son, Ivan.