June 28, 2022

Procol Harum frontman Gary Brooker, in London, on Nov. 14, 2006.MAX NASH/The Related Press

Gary Brooker, the Procol Harum frontman who sang one of many Sixties’ most enduring hits, “A Whiter Shade of Pale,” has died. He was 76.

The English rock band stated Brooker died at his residence on Saturday. He had been receiving therapy for most cancers.

An announcement posted on the band’s official web site stated: “With the deepest remorse we should announce the loss of life on February 19 2022 of Gary Brooker MBE, singer, pianist and composer of Procol Harum, and a brightly-shining, irreplaceable mild within the music business.”

The London-born Brooker was singer and keyboard participant with the band, which had an enormous hit with its first single, “A Whiter Shade of Pale.” With its Baroque-flavored organ solo and mysterious opening line – “We skipped the sunshine fandango, turned cartwheels cross the ground” – the track grew to become one of many signature tunes of the 1967 “Summer season of Love.”

It topped the U.Ok. album chart for six weeks, was a high 10 hit in america and in 2018 was considered one of six singles inducted into the Rock and Roll Corridor of Fame.

In 2006, Procol Harum’s former organ participant, Matthew Fisher, sued Brooker over the track’s well-known Hammond organ solo. Brooker stated he wrote the Bach-inspired melody earlier than Fisher joined the band, however a decide awarded Fisher a share of credit score and royalties alongside Brooker and lyricist Keith Reid.

The decide stated Fisher’s contribution to the track was “substantial however not, in my judgment, as substantial as that of Mr. Brooker.”

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The band by no means had one other hit on the identical scale, however Brooker continued to guide Procol Harum for greater than 5 a long time, by way of numerous lineup adjustments and 13 albums.

Brooker additionally launched 4 solo albums and wrote and sang for Eric Clapton’s band and with Invoice Wyman’s Rhythm Kings, and he toured with Ringo Starr’s band Ringo’s All-Starrs.

In 2003, Queen Elizabeth II made him an MBE – member of the Order of the British Empire – for companies to charity.