Former Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren died Thursday at his home in New York, his spokesman said, adding that he had been suffering from cancer.
The 64 year old's condition suddenly worsened, said spokesman Les Molloy, adding that his family were "devastated ...He had been doing very well, it's a sad day. I have spoken to his partner," he said.
McLaren was a major figure in the 1970s punk scene. As well as the Sex Pistols, who spearheaded British punk rock, he managed other bands including the New York Dolls and Bow Wow Wow.
Music journalist Jon Savage, who wrote "England's Dreaming", the award-winning history of the Sex Pistols and punk, said: "Without Malcolm McLaren there would not have been any British punk.
"He's one of the rare individuals who had a huge impact on the cultural and social life of this nation."
McLaren was a former partner of British designer Vivienne Westwood and the couple set up a clothes shop on London's King's Road in the 1970s.
They had a son Joseph Corre, the co-founder of lingerie shop Agent Provocateur.