Neil Innes, a British vocalist, songwriter and comedian understood for his deal with “ Monty Python,” the Rutles and the madcap ’60 s outfit the Bonzo Canine Doo-Dah Band, passed away Sunday at the age of 75, according to the BBC and multiple news outlets.
In addition to being a key member of the Bonzos– whose 1968 single “I’m the Urban Spaceman” was produced by Paul McCartney under a pseudonym– Innes appeared in lots of jobs related to the British comedy troupe “ Monty Python,” consisting of the lead minstrel in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” (that’s him singing “Brave Sir Robin”) and the Beatles spoof documentary “All You Need Is Money,” where he was the primary songwriter and played the John Lennon character Ron Nasty.
A representative for the family informed the BBC that Innes had actually not been experiencing any health problem and had “passed away unexpectedly on Sunday night.” He had actually been travelling house from France with his household.
” It is with deep sorrow and great sadness that we need to announce the death of Neil James Innes on 29 December 2019,” a declaration from the household checks out. “We have actually lost a gorgeous, kind, gentle soul whose music and tunes touched the heart of everybody and whose intelligence and search for truth inspired us all. He passed away of natural causes quickly without warning and, I believe, without pain. His wife Yvonne and their 3 kids, Miles, Luke and Barney, and three grandchildren, Max, Issy and Zac, give thanks for his life, for his music and for the pleasure he offered us all.”
Born in England in 1944, Innes learned several instruments as a child and finished from Goldsmiths University in1966 He signed up with the Bonzos that year and was the group’s de facto musical director, cowriting almost all of its songs with frontman Vivian Stanshall. The group launched four albums in between 1967 and 1972– songs from which spawned the titles of both the influential American rock publication Trouser Press and the band Death Cab for Cutie– and reformed a number of times over the years.
Innes also composed songs and appeared in numerous episodes of Python’s last season in 1974, along with the troupe’s later movies “Life of Brian,” “Jabberwocky” and other jobs. He joined Python’s Eric Idle in a subsequent series called “Rutland Weekend Tv,” which generated the Rutles job.
While the Rutles spoof made relentless mockery of the Beatles’ history (in a relocation of doubtful taste, the Yoko Ono character was a Nazi), the Fab 4 themselves were mainly quite amused by it and George Harrison himself appeared in it as a newscaster. The job began a long association in between Harrison and Python’s Eric Idle, causing movies such as “Time Bandits.” The Beatles’ publisher at the time, ATV Music, successfully argued that Lennon and McCartney need to get songwriting credits for the Rutles’ songs, and ultimately settled out of court. Years later, Innes was added to the credits of Oasis’ 1994 track “Whatever”– paradoxically written by bandleader Noel Gallagher, a dedicated and vocal Beatles fan– which was ruled to have actually infringed on the copyright of his tune “How Sweet to Be a Moron.”
In the wake of the Beatles‘ 1990 s “Anthology” retrospective, Innes reformed a version of the Rutles and toured with it in 1996, and in current years had fun with Beatles tribute act the Bootleg Beatles.
” Individuals were desperate to get the Beatles back together and a person in America was providing them $20 million each for a reunion! It was quite ridiculous,” Innes informed NPR in2012 “And George Harrison, who by then was closely included with the Pythons, felt something even sillier needed to be done. He loved every minute of The Rutles. The 1996 revival for our Archaeology album was even funnier truly.”
A film about Innes’ life called “The Seventh Python” was released in 2008.
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