Former Fleetwood Mac guitarist Danny Kirwan dead at 68

Fleetwood Mac

The band's founding drummer, and bandmate of Kirwan, Mick Fleetwood acknowledged the guitarist's passing in a statement for the group on his personal Facebook page on Friday evening. The location and cause of death was not known as of early Saturday morning.

"Thank, Danny Kirwan. You will forever be missed!" Danny played a key-role in Mac's band during the late 1960's and early 1970's. His love for the Blues led him to being asked to join Fleetwood Mac in 1968, where he made his musical home for many years.

Fleetwood writes that Kirwan's legacy "will forever live on in the music he wrote and played so beautifully as a part of the foundation of Fleetwood Mac".

Kirwan is survived by his only son. Kirwan released four solo albums in the 1970s but was plagued by bouts of mental illness and homelessness.

The late musician was sacked Fleetwood Mac in 1972 after apparently becoming over-stressed with his duties in the band.

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The very first album he recorded with the band was on their 1969 compilation album, English Rose, which included tracks like Albatross, and Jigsaw Puzzle Blues. He then played on their third album, Then Play On, released in September 1969, which reached #6 on the United Kingdom charts. For their sixth album, 1972's Bare Trees, Green and Spencer were long gone, replaced by Bob Welch and Christine McVie.

When they went on tour in Germany, Kirwan and Green - one of the other members of the band - both took LSD laced with some kind of powerful ingredient which "changed their behavior" in the following years.

But Kirwan struggled with alcoholism, and he was eventually dismissed from the group in 1972.

Further details about Kirwan's death have not been released.

Kirwan, who was also a songwriter, was sacked in 1972 according to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's website.

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