'A huge loss': Tributes pour in after singer-songwriter Rab Noakes dies aged 75

Credit: PA

Tributes have poured in after the death of Scottish singer-songwriter Rab Noakes.

Noakes, 75, died in hospital on Friday after a career spanning well over half a century, with more than 20 albums to his name.

First playing professionally in 1967, he went on to be a founding member of folk rock band Stealers Wheel and performed at festivals such as Celtic Connections.

Val McDermid, the best-selling crime writer who, like Mr Noakes, is from Fife, paid tribute to the man she has known since she was a teenager.

“In tears at the news of Rab Noakes’ death. Known and loved this generous, talented, open-hearted man since I was 14, never known a kinder soul. Or a better guitarist,” she said.

Fellow singer-songwriter Barbara Dickson also remembered the man who she had performed with.

“My dear and old friend Rab Noakes has died suddenly in hospital today,” she said.

“I am shocked. We had so much in common – The Everly Brothers, the Flying Burrito Brothers and an enduring love of songs, particularly traditional music. Sleep well, Rab. May you rest in peace.”

Before setting up production company Neon with his wife, he spent an eight-year spell working at the BBC.

Steve Carson, director at BBC Scotland, said: “All of us at BBC Scotland are deeply saddened to hear the news about Rab Noakes.

“His contribution to music in Scotland cannot be overstated, alongside some remarkable programmes he made here at the BBC.

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends, and with all his fans across the nation.”

BBC Radio Scotland broadcaster Bryan Burnett said: “Such sad news about our own Rab Noakes. A huge loss.

“He hired me at Radio Scotland and as a producer he taught me so much about the country-pop music we both loved.”

Radio presenter Bob Harris said Noakes was a "torch-bearer for Scottish culture across more than fifty years."

"But more - he was a kind and caring man," he added.


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