Neil Innes, ‘Monty Python’ Collaborator Dies at 75

Innes

Writer, musician, and “Monty Python” collaborator, Neil Innes, has passed away at the age of 75.

Additionally, Innes was part of the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band and the Rutles, which was a Beatles parody group.

Nigel Morton, Innes’ agent told CNN that “Neil Innes passed away unexpectedly.” According to a statement on his website, Innes died of natural causes suddenly.

In the 1960s, Innes joined the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band while he was studying at Goldsmiths College School of Art in London.

The band’s biggest-selling single was “I’m the Urban Spaceman.” The single reached number five on the U.K. charts in 1968. The band broke up in 1970.

After the band broke up, Innes became part of the band GRIMMS and developed a close relationship with the “Monty Python” team in the mid-70s. He wrote music for their albums and television series, in addition to appearing in their large- and small-screen outings.

Later, Innes went on to form The Rutles, a parody of the Beatles. This came off the back of his work on a sketch show called “Rutland Weekend Television.”

Mark Lewisohn, a music writer, was among those who paid tribute to Innes. He tweeted, “Deeply saddened by the death of Neil Innes. Loved his brilliant witty music, loved him. Mankind will miss his wry sagely wisdom.”

Comedian Diane Morgan also tweeted her farewell to Innes. “One of the nicest people I’ve ever met and a towering talent.”

A statement posted on Innes’ website Monday, Dec. 30, 2019, said that he “died of natural causes” on Sunday. He went “quickly without warning and, I think, without pain.”

A spokesperson for the Innes family said he was not suffering from any illness and passed away unexpectedly Sunday night.

Founding member of “Monty Python” Sir Michael Palin described him as a “great writer” and “the most lovely friend.”

Palin told Radio 4’s PM program, “He was the first Neil Innes really! We were very lucky to have him on board. He was a great writer and he was eccentric, and he was clever without being pretentious. “

By Jeanette Vietti

Sources:

CNN Entertainment: Neil Innes, ‘Monty Python’ collaborator, dead at 75
BBC: Neil Innes: Monty Python songwriter dies aged 75
CBS NEWS: Neil Innes, Monty Python star and musician, had died at age 75

Image Courtesy of Takahiro Kyono’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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