Gong Founder Daevid Allen Dies
Daevid Allen, the Australian-born co-founder of Gong also known for his work with Soft Machine and as a solo artist, is dead after a bout with cancer. He was 77.
The experimental musician said last month that he would stop all efforts to fight an inoperable diagnosis. His death was confirmed today (March 13) via the Daevid Allen’s University Of Errors page on Facebook, which said: "Daevid est mort, Daevid is dead."
Daevid Allen underwent an extensive round of radiation therapy last year, and received a clean bill of health -- only to see the cancer return. It was then, Allen said in a posting at PlanetGong, that he made a difficult decision.
"The cancer is now so well established that I have now been given approximately six months to live," he said. "So, my view has changed: I am not interested in endless surgical operations -- and, in fact, it has come as a relief to know that the end is in sight. I am a great believer in "the will of the way things are," and I also believe that the time has come to stop resisting and denying and to surrender to the way it is."
Allen left his fans with a few kind words. "I can only hope that during this journey," he said, "I have somehow contributed to the happiness in the lives of a few other fellow humans."
Tributes this morning included one from Flea, of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who said "Daevid Allen was an incredible musician and a great inspiration to me."
Daevid Allen has said the he hopes Gong will continue, even in his absence. "There are those who want to hang on to me as the band's founder-father, claiming that Gong cannot continue without my presence," he said. "I will die soon enough, and then if Gong dies too, I would consider that this project will have fallen short. I see Gong as a tradition, a way of living music, not just a band."
Allen, who moved to the UK in 1961 to start his musical career, made a final public appearance on Feb. 27, at a poetry recital in New South Wales. He'd co-founded Soft Machine in 1966 and then, a year later, Gong. He left Gong in 1975, having overseen their fan-favorite Radio Gnome trilogy, to pursue other projects. Allen then revived Gong in 1991, and continued with the group until his final illness.
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