Gary Brooker has died at the age of 76.
The rock star – best known as frontman of 1960s rock band Procol Harum – lost a battle with cancer on Saturday (19.02.2022), his record label has confirmed.
A statement read: “With the deepest regret we must announce the death on 19th February 2022 of Gary Brooker MBE, singer, pianist and composer of Procol Harum, and a brightly-shining, irreplaceable light in the music industry. Aged 76, he had been receiving treatment for cancer, but died peacefully at home.”
The London-born star – who is survived by his wife Franky – was a founding member of the band and co-wrote ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’, which went on to become their biggest hit and was featured in an advertising campaign for Dulux paint.
Procol Harum were initially active between 1967 and 1977 but – despite various line up changes – reunited in 1991 and released their latest EP in 2019.
In a statement, the band – which currently comprises Geoff Whitehorn, Matt Pegg, Josh Phillips and Geoff Dunn – said that Gary was the “defining constant” of their history.
The statement read: “Gary’s voice and piano were the single defining constant of Procol’s 50-year international concert career.
“Without any stage antics or other gimmicks he was invariably the most watchable musician in the show. But for all his other interests and skills – prize-winning angler, pub-owner, lyricist, painter, inventor – he was above all a devoted and loyal husband to Franky, whom he met in 1965 and married in 1968.
Our thoughts must be with her, their families and friends at this extremely sad time.”