King Crimson Co-Founder Ian McDonald Found Dead at 75

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

King Crimson co-founder and Foreigner member, Ian McDonald, passed away on Wednesday (February 9). He was 75 years old.

The multi-instrumentalist, who was part of the original King Crimson lineup in the 1960s, as well as the more commercially successful group Foreigner in the mid-1970s, “passed away peacefully” surrounded by his family at his home in New York City.

With Foreigner, McDonald played on some of the band’s biggest hits, including “Hot Blooded,” “Cold as Ice,” “Feels Like the First Time” and “Double Vision.”

In King Crimson, the artist played woodwinds and keys. But he was only in King Crimson for one record, the band’s debut LP in 1969, In the Court of the Crimson King. Many, though, consider him a formative participant of the “prog-rock” movement.

McDonald also appeared on the T. Rex song, “Get It On (Bang a Gong),” among other recordings in his role as a session player. More recently, he played in the New York rock band Honey West.

He is survived by his son, Maxwell.

Many on Twitter remembered the artist, including guitarist Steve Stevens, who wrote on the social media platform, “Ian McDonald, King Crimson and Foreigner Founding Member has passed away. In my opinion, their debut record is the most important recording in progressive rock. At times dissonant chaos followed by aching beauty. @DGMHQ@ProgMagazineUK

Photo by Bobby Bank/Getty Images

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