Saturday, April 30, 2011
Sadly John Gill is dead and has stopped playing.
John Gill, 57 years old, died on April 15, 2011 in Perth, Western Australia.
John Gill was a Ragtime Festival favourite and was planning to kick off another US tour beginning this June in Sedalia.
The talents of the acclaimed stride and ragtime pianist took him around the world but he was probably best known for his energetic performances for more than 17 years in and around his hometown of Perth.
London-born Gill was the first and only Australian to become an accredited Bosendorfer Concert Artist and the first to be invited to play at the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival. He toured Australia, South-East Asia and throughout the US. Before following his parents to Australia in 1983, he played in leading hotels and clubs in Europe and became Britain's top ragtime pianist.
Fellow Perth musician and friend Garry Lee said Gill was the consummate artist.
"He played with, obviously, incredible technique and virtuosity but he was also able to engage the audience," he said. "Very few pianists in the world can play like John and as far as Australia is concerned, I don't think there'd be any."
A tribute will be planned during the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival on June 1 in the evening.
John and I hung out on and around and shared various inner city Perth pitches over the years I drifted through and then lived in Perth. I considered him a friend.
He was a fixture, a truly gifted rag time pianist who lent a jaunty, upbeat and joyful melodic stratum to the public of Perth via hauling his piano out from it's storage in an underground carpark several times a week and banging on it.
What he did was important. Perth is poorer in spirit with his passing and that's part of the sadness.
another moody song.
What the hell, have the lot. It's soft and comforting and cushions death