Gordon Lightfoot, Canada’s equivalent to American singer-songwriters who created the soundtrack for baby boomers growing up in the midst of a countercultural movement, died Monday, according to his publicist. He was 84.
Lightfoot died of natural causes at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto, according to publicist Victoria Lord.
Lightfoot accomplished something more unusual in popular music today: he virtually became a one-man act, performing his own critically acclaimed work, including his most famous mid-1960s tunes, “Early Mornin’ Rain” and “For Lovin’ Me.”
He wrote songs for Peter, Paul, and Mary, and his 1968 album “Did She Mention My Name?” won him his first Grammy nomination for Best Folk Performance.
Lightfoot’s rolling, guitar-based music, influenced by Bob Dylan and the folk singers of the time, was equally at home on the radio with Anne Murray as it was with the Eagles.
He recorded five classic albums for United Artists before moving on to Warner/Reprise in the 1990s. “All Live,” his only live album since the original United Artists releases, was released in 2012.
According to his official biography, he survived a near-death sickness in 2002 and continued to record and perform.