Wilko Johnson, the iconic guitarist who shared his distinctive guitar-playing style performing with The Wilko Johnson Band, Dr Feelgood, Ian Dury & the Blockheads and Roger Daltrey, passed away on Monday, his family have said. Wilko was 75.
“This is the announcement we never wanted to make, and we do so, on behalf of Wilko’s family and the band, with a very heavy heart,” a social media statement reads.
“Wilko Johnson has died. He passed away at home on Monday evening, 21st November 2022. Thank you for respecting Wilko’s family’s privacy at this very sad time, and thank you all for having been such a tremendous support throughout Wilko’s incredible life. RIP Wilko Johnson.”
In the early years of Dr Feelgood, Wilko’s style had been cited as one of the founding influences of the British punk movement. Wilko was diagnosed in January 2013 with late-stage pancreatic cancer and elected not to receive any chemotherapy. It was later discovered that he had a less aggressive and more treatable form of the disease, and Wilko underwent radical surgery to treat his illness.
He underwent an 11-hour operation to remove his pancreas, spleen, part of his stomach, and small and large intestines and the removal and reconstruction of blood vessels relating to the liver. Wilko announced he was cancer free when he received the Icon Award and the 2014 Q Awards.