Ian McDonald death: King Crimson and Foreigner co-founder dies aged 75

Multi-instrumentalist was a key part of King Crimson’s ground-breaking prog rock sound

Louis Chilton
Friday 11 February 2022 07:58 GMT
<p>Ian McDonald, former King Crimson member, being interviewed in 2019</p>

Ian McDonald, former King Crimson member, being interviewed in 2019

Ian McDonald, the multi-instrumentalist and co-founder of the prog rock band King Crimson, has died at the age of 75.

The artist was also known for co-founding the hard rock group Foreigner.

A representative for McDonald has confirmed to press that the musician “passed away peacefully on 9 February in his home in New York City, surrounded by his family”.

The cause McDonald’s death was not revealed.

McDonald formed King Crimson in 1968 alongside Robert Fripp, and Michael and Peter Giles.

He left the group after recording their debut album, In the Court of the Crimson King, in 1969, co-writing and co-producing every track, and playing several instrumental parts across the album.

Drummer Michael Giles also left the band in 1969, prompting the duo to perform briefly under the name McDonald and Giles.

McDonald co-founded Foreigner in 1976. The musician, whose instruments included guitar, keyboards and saxophone, performed on three albums with the outfit (1977’s Foreigner, 1978’s Double Vision and 1979’s Head Games).

Among the band’s hits were songs such as “Feels Like the First Time”, “Cold as Ice” and “Double Vision”. He departed Foreigner in 1980.

Later on, McDonald toured with the 21st Century Schizoid Band between 2002 and 2004, reuniting with former King Crimson members Mel Collins and Michael and Peter Giles.

Most recently, he had performed with the band Honey West, releasing one alum with them in 2017.

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