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Guitarist and ‘Game of Thrones’ star was 75

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British rock guitarist and “Game of Thrones” star Wilko Johnson has died at 75.

The multi-talented musician passed away at his home on Monday, according to a statement posted to his social media.

“This is the announcement we never wanted to make, and we do so with a very heavy heart: Wilko Johnson has died,” the statement read. “Thank you for respecting the family’s privacy at this very sad time. RIP Wilko Johnson.”

Johnson’s official cause of death has not been revealed — but he was open about his previous battle with pancreatic cancer.

He is best known as the guitarist for the British band Dr. Feelgood. In 1976, the band’s album “Stupidity” was number one in the UK, but Johnson left the band a year later. He then joined Ian Drury and the Blockheads, as well as releasing his own music — including an album with The Who’s Roger Daltrey in 2014.

Wilko Johnson performs during Planet Rock’s Rocktober event at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire on October 18, 2022 in London, England.Lorne Thomson/Redferns

This is the announcement we never wanted to make, & we do so with a very heavy heart: Wilko Johnson has died. He passed away at home on Monday 21st November. Thank you for respecting the family’s privacy at this very sad time. RIP Wilko Johnson.
(Image: Leif Laaksonen) pic.twitter.com/1cRqyi9b9X

— Wilko Johnson (@wilkojohnson) November 23, 2022

The guitarist become an iconic musician thanks to his unique guitar style and wild stage presence. Despite being left-handed, he learned and mastered playing the guitar right-handed.

Along with his long music career, Johnson made his acting debut in “Game of Thrones” as mute executioner Per Ilyn Payne in seasons one and two of the HBO series.

Guitarist Wilko Johnson, singer Lee Brilleaux, drummer John “The Big Figure” Martin and bassist John B. Sparks of Dr. Feelgood on March 23, 1976 in Los Angeles, California.
Richard Creamer/ Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

English rock group Dr Feelgood.
Estate Of Keith Morris/Redferns

Lee Brilleaux, John B. Sparks, John Martin and Wilko Johnson in 1975.
Estate Of Keith Morris/Redferns

Johnson was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2013 and was told he had 10 months to live after choosing not to go through chemotherapy. A year later, he was declared cancer free following an 11-hour operation that removed a huge tumor.

“Now, I’m spending my time gradually coming to terms with the idea that my death is not imminent, that I am going to live on,” he said at that year’s Q awards.


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