Deke Leonard dies aged 72

Deke Leonard: 1944-2017
Deke Leonard: 1944-2017

Deke Leonard has died at the age of 72.

The news was confirmed by Cherry Red Records on their Facebook page.

Born Roger Leonard in Llanelli, South Wales in 1944, the musician and author formed his first band Lucifer And The Corncrackers in 1962. He went on to play in The Jets, laterally The Smokeless Zone, and in 1968 joined The Bystanders, who would change musical direction and morph into Man.

He enjoyed several stints with Man during his career and also played with his own band, Iceberg.

He penned the liner notes for Man’s albums and went on to write four autobiographical books: Rhinos, Winos & Lunatics: The Legend Of Man, a Rock N’ Roll Band, Maybe I Should’ve Stayed In Bed?, The Twang Dynasty – From Memphis To Merthyr, Guitarists That Rocked The World and Maximum Darkness: Man On The Road To Nowhere.

In addition, Leonard played with a range of other artists, including The Tyla Gang, Walter Egan, The Force and The Flying Aces.

Leonard’s friend, writer and film producer Kevin Allen, paid tribute to the musician.

He tells the South Wales Evening Post: “Deke was a true gentlemen of acid rock and he had a fantastic presence on stage. How on earth he survived that era to remain so erudite and engaging was a mystery.

“Deke was such an interesting, gentle and lovely person and he was part of a dying breed – he’ll be really missed. And I don’t think I ever saw a man polish off a packet of Embassy Regal with such aplomb as Deke Leonard.”

No cause of death has so far been released.

Deke Leonard: Reissues

Deke Leonard: Maximum Darkness: Man On The Road To Nowhere

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent more than 30 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. After initially joining our news desk in the summer of 2014, he moved to the e-commerce team full-time in 2020. He maintains Louder’s buyer’s guides, scouts out the best deals for music fans and reviews headphones, speakers, books and more. He's written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog and has previous written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky. Scott grew up listening to rock and prog, cutting his teeth on bands such as Marillion and Magnum before his focus shifted to alternative and post-punk in the late 80s. His favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Ned's Atomic Dustbin and Drab Majesty, but he also still has a deep love of Rush.