Tributes after South Tyneside rock legend John Miles dies aged 72

Son of South Tyneside John Miles has died aged 72 following a short illness, the musician’s manager has confirmed.

By Naomi Clarke, PA Entertainment Reporter
Monday, 6th December 2021, 6:35 pm
Updated Monday, 6th December 2021, 6:38 pm
South Tyneside rock legend John Miles has died at the age of 72.
South Tyneside rock legend John Miles has died at the age of 72.

The Jarrow-born rock singer died in his sleep on Sunday surrounded by his family in a hospital in Newcastle.

Miles, who grew up in Hebburn, was best known for his hit ballad Music Was My First Love, which reached number three in the UK charts in 1976.

During his career, he also performed alongside a string of global music stars including Tina Turner, Led Zeppelin founder Jimmy Page, the late Joe Cocker and opera tenor Andrea Bocelli.

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Miles's manager, Cliff Cooper, said on Monday: "The UK has lost one of its most talented musicians.

"As John's manager and friend for over 50 years, John was not only so kind and gentle but a brilliant musician and songwriter on the world stage.

"Grief is the price we pay for love. He will be greatly missed but his music will live on for ever."

The singer released 10 studio albums between 1976 and 1999, alongside many singles including the tracks Highfly, Slowdown, Remember Yesterday and The Right To Sing, which all made the United Kingdom singles chart.

He performed regularly at the Last Night of the Proms and also received an outstanding contribution prize at the Progressive Rock awards in 2017.

Miles was married to his wife, Eileen, for more than 50 years, and had two children and two grandchildren.

His family also posted a statement to his official Facebook page, saying: "He was a loving Husband, Father and Grandfather and we will all miss him more than any words could ever express."