Former Kinks keyboardist Ian Gibbons has died at the age of 67. At the time of writing, a cause of death has not yet been officially confirmed.
The news of the musician’s death was confirmed on the website of Kinks spin-off group Kast Off Kinks, where a statement simply read, “It is with great sadness that we have to report the sudden death of Ian Gibbons. Deepest sympathy to Nadia and all Ian’s friends and family.”
Gibbons first joined The Kinks in 1979 and remained with them for a decade, playing on albums including One For The Road, Give The People What They Want and State Of Confusion and singles ‘Come Dancing’, ‘Better Things’, ‘Destroyer’ and ‘Don’t Forget To Dance’. His career also includes work with Dr. Feelgood, Ian Hunter, The Kursaal Flyers, Blues ‘n Trouble, Ken Hensley, Mike Vernon, Samson, Randy California and more. He began a second, three-year stint with The Kinks in 1993, and in 2008, he joined Kast Off Kinks, a group comprised of former band members Mick Avory, Jim Rodford, John Dalton, John Gosling and Dave Clarke.
“To simply say Ian will be missed would be an understatement,” Ray Davies said of Gibbons’ passing. “My first thoughts are for his family and loved ones.
“When he auditioned for the band, he only played a few chords before I knew he was the right guy to have on keyboard, he seemed to know the right voicing to musically slot in between the other members of the band. And with the Kinks, that took some doing!
“He was also was a brilliant accordion player and apparently, a bit of a childhood prodigy on that instrument. In the studio, he would willingly try out the most random musical idea I would throw at him. On the road, he could always be guaranteed to give a smile of encouragement from his side of the stage and buy a round in the bar after the show so we could have a party in Ian’s noisy room.
“Being in a band is like being in a family and today it is as though we have lost family member. Right now I’m thinking of his smile, his cheeky chappie sense of humour and generous grin that made you feel it was OK, even though there was an eight hour bus ride ahead after a long show and the air conditioning has broken down. Though, somehow we’d get over the discomfort, reach the next venue and go onstage, fresh again.”
Dave Davies added, “Apart from being a great professional, Ian always had a positive attitude to being on the road and recording. In the many years he worked with The Kinks, he added great colour and dimension to The Kinks’ music and he was a good friend. I’ll miss him greatly. Lots of love to his family and friends at this difficult time.”
Former Kinks drummer and fellow member of Kast Off Kinks, Mick Avory added: “I’ve known and worked with Ian for 40 years, and I shall always remember him as a good friend and great musician. I will miss him so much especially as we were still working together. It’s so sad he had to go so quickly before anyone could say goodbye.”
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