Daevid Allen dies aged 77

The Gong and Soft Machine founder been battling cancer

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Daevid Allen has died aged 77.

The Guardian reports that Allen’s son, Orlando Monday Allen, confirmed the news earlier on Facebook.

Allen, the leader of the prog-jazz group Gong, had been suffering from cancer.


Orlando Monday wrote, “And so dada Ali, bert camembert, the dingo Virgin, divided alien and his other 12 selves prepare to pass up the oily way and back to the planet of love. And I rejoice and give thanks… The gong vibration will forever sound and its vibration will always lift and enhance. You have left such a beautiful legacy and we will make sure it forever shines in our children and their children. Now is the happiest time of yr life. Blessed be.”

Allen was born in Melbourne, Australia, in 1938. He moved to the UK in the early Sixties, where in 1966 he became founding guitarist of the Soft Machine, along side Robert Wyatt, Kevin Ayers and Mike Ratledge.

While in France in 1967, Allen was denied re-entry back to the United Kingdom following a visa complication; he stayed behind, effectively leaving the Soft Machine.


His next project, Gong, became Allen’s defining life’s work, reflecting many of the best qualities of the era in its warm embracing of psychedelia, prog, avant garde music and poetry.

Gong released their debut album, Magick Brother, in 1970.

Meanwhile, Allen released his solo debut, Banana Moon in 1971; the same year as Gong’s Camembert Electrique.

Between 1973 and 1974, Gong recorded their Radio Gnome Trilogy, made up of the albums Flying Teapots, Angel’s Egg and You.

Allen left Gong in 1975; although he resurrected the name in the late Eighties.

In 1992, the band released the Shapeshifter album, which Allen considered a continuation of the Radio Gnome project.

Allen continued to play with Gong until 2014. In February this year, he released a statement outlining the status of his health.

“The cancer is now so well established that I have now been given approximately six months to live,” he wrote, saying he was “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.”


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