John Prine has died, aged 73

Tributes pour in for the much-loved singer-songwriter

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Folk and country singer-songwriter John Prine has died, aged 73.

He passed away yesterday (April 7) at Nashville’s Vanderbilt University Medical Center from complications related to Covid-19. He was hospitalised last month with a sudden onset of symptoms after returning from a European tour.

Born and raised in Chicago, Prine was a postman playing local folk clubs by night when Kris Kristofferson helped him secure a deal with Atlantic. Self-titled 1971 debut made fans of Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash, and its songs were later covered by the likes of Bonnie Raitt and Bette Midler.

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Prine went on to release 18 studio albums, with his most recent, 2018’s The Tree Of Forgiveness, reaching the American Top 5. Earlier this year he was honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammys.

“Over here on E Street, we are crushed by the loss of John Prine,” wrote Bruce Springsteen. “John and I were ‘New Dylans’ together in the early 70s and he was never anything but the loveliest guy in the world. A true national treasure and a songwriter for the ages. We send our love and prayers to his family.”

“Words can’t even come close,” said Bonnie Raitt. “I’m crushed by the loss of my dear friend, John. My heart and love go out to Fiona and all the family. For all of us whose hearts are breaking, we will keep singing his songs and holding him near.”

Margo Price wrote: “It hurts so bad to read the news. I am gutted. My hero is gone. My friend is gone. We’ll love you forever John Prine.”

“A simple majority of who I am as a person, let alone a musician, is because of John Prine,” wrote Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, who frequently covered Prine’s songs in concert. “He is my number 1.”

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