Wilco Johnson, the English guitarist and singer of the band Dr. Feelgood, who also played Sir Eileen Payne on HBO’s “Game of Thrones.” He was 75.
“This is an announcement we never wanted to make, and we make it with a very heavy heart: Wilco Johnson is dead. He passed away at his home on Monday, November 21. Thank you for respecting the family’s privacy at this very sad time. RIP Wilco Johnson,” his official Twitter account posted on Wednesday.
This is an announcement we never wanted to make, and we do so with a very heavy heart: Wilco Johnson is dead. He passed away at his home on Monday, November 21. 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
In the year In 1971, Johnson founded Dr. Feelgood with Lee Brilleaux and John B. Sparks. They played distinctive British pub rock and R&B and toured throughout the 70s with high-energy shows. Their breakthrough album “Foolishness” hit number 1 in the UK album chart, but Johnson left the group after a year in 1977. He then formed a band called Wilco Johnson, where he played until his death.
On TV, Johnson’s only role was as Payne in seasons 1 and 2 of “Game of Thrones.” Payne, known as the King’s Justice, was a royal executioner ordered to kill the beloved Eddard “Ned” Stark (Sean Bean) at the end of Season 1. During the reign of the Mad King, he had his tongue cut out, making it perfect. , the silent killer.
Wilko said in a 2011 interview that “they want a villain who goes around looking at swords before they kill people.” “That made it easy. Staring daggers at people is something I do all the time, it’s like second nature to me… On the first day, I had to look evil at this girl. So I kind of her in Bogota. After that, the American director came to me and said, ‘Wilko, you don’t have to make it scary.’ You are terrible.’
In the year In 2013, he was diagnosed with late-stage pancreatic cancer, chose not to undergo chemotherapy and was given 10 months to wait. His “Game of Thrones” role was cut short, and he went on a farewell tour and recorded his final album with Man lead singer Roger Daltrey in 2014. He was declared cancer free the year after the surgery.
Among the musicians who paid tribute to Johnson, Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page wrote, “I am saddened to hear of the passing of Dr. Feelgood guitarist and singer/songwriter Wilco Johnson today. I saw Wilco perform at Coco in Camden in May 2013 and the atmosphere was electric. This show was originally billed as his farewell tour. But, to his credit, he kept the show going and entertaining people until recently. I really appreciate him and we will all miss him. Rip Wilco.
Franz Ferdinand’s frontman, Alex Kapranos, said, “His unique, string playing style and stage presence delighted and inspired many guitarists, including myself. When I interviewed him a few years ago, he was a brilliant, thoughtful and fascinating storyteller, crafting the legend of life. His presence on this planet has been felt for many years.
Johnson is survived by two sons, Matthew and Simon; His wife, Irene Knight, died of cancer in 2004.