All Quiet Now: Scott McKenzie

Scott McKenzie, who sang the 1960s hit San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Flowers In Your Hair), has died aged 73. The singer was a close friend of Mamas and Papas star John Phillips, who wrote and produced the San Francisco track. Released in May 1967, it became a global hit and an anthem for the 1960s counterculture movement. “I am amazed at how San Francisco continues even now to evoke dreams in the hearts and minds of people all over the world,” McKenzie wrote in 2002. He was found by a neighbour in his home on Sunday afternoon. His death was confirmed by another neighbour, Victoria Byers. She told the BBC he had been in and out of hospital recently after falling ill with Guillain-Barre Syndrome, a disease affecting the nervous system. “I think he had a heart attack this most recent time. He was in the hospital,” she said. “They did not want him to leave the hospital, but he wanted to be in his house [when he died]”. Born Philip Wallach Blondheim in January 1939, the singer, songwriter and guitarist grew up in North Carolina where he lived with his grandparents while his widowed mother worked in Washington DC. As a teenager, he met Phillips and formed a doowop band called The Abstracts. The band moved to New York and became The Smoothies, where they played...

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