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Last Updated: Monday, 8 May 2006, 09:12 GMT 10:12 UK
Go-Betweens singer dies in sleep
Grant McLennan
McLennan's music influenced the likes of REM and Franz Ferdinand
Grant McLennan, one of Australia's most acclaimed singer-songwriters, has died in his sleep, aged 48.

The Go-Betweens lead singer died on Saturday after complaining of feeling ill at his home in Brisbane.

The band's manager Bernard Galbally said they were devastated, describing the death as "totally unexpected".

Although never a chart success, the indie band were respected at home and abroad, influencing groups such as REM and Franz Ferdinand.

Exceptional

A statement from his record label Lo-Max Records said McLennan was "one of Australia's greatest songwriters" who left an outstanding musical legacy.

The Go-Betweens were formed by McLennan and fellow singer-songwriter Robert Forster at university in Queensland in 1977.

"The Go-Betweens recorded a series of exceptional albums that achieved widespread critical acclaim and were fundamental in bringing Australian music to a global audience," said Bernard MacMahon of Lo-Max Records.

McLennan was an "unparalleled lyricist and a prolific and meticulous composer," said Mr MacMahon.

"His singular contribution to music and his commitment to his craft simply cannot be overstated."

The Go-Betweens, whose best known songs were Bachelor Kisses and Streets of Your Town, took a break form recording in 1989.

McLennan recorded four solo albums before the band reformed in 2000 - a reunion greeted with popular acclaim.


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