The news of the death of British guitarist Julian Keith Levene struck music lovers with grief and sadness. The famous singer who established The Clash and Public Image Ltd. (PiL) passed away at the age of 65 after a battle with liver cancer. He was regarded as an extremely creative and influential guitarist. This heartbreaking news was announced by one of his good friends, Adam Hammon, on Twitter. Keith was always regarded as an influential and prominent figure in the rock genre. He never set any boundaries for himself and let his music transcend the limits. His guitar work for the first song of the PIL album is regarded as one of the best pieces of alternative music. Many music experts say that the kind of guitar work we listen to today is because of the contribution of Keith’s work.
Keith was born in London in 1957. Keith was always attracted to pop music since childhood. He was an ardent lover of progressive rock. When he was 15, he worked as a roadie for the Yes band when they were on their Close to the Edge tour. Keith was always passionate about music from an early age. He had a strong affection for the Yes band and its guitarist Steve Howe. He even termed him the best guitarist in the whole world.
He was barely 18 when he formed the Clash. He was joined by two other youngsters- Mick Jones and Paul Simonon. Keith was adamant about achieving fame through his music from his young days. He, along with Bernard Rhodes, spends a good amount of time convincing Joe strummer, a popular sign of that time to join The Clash. Though Keith was the one who formed the group, he didn’t really gain much from it. They hadn’t even recorded their first album when Keith decided to leave the group. The only song he contributed to the album was What’s My Name?
Keith’s Journey To Success
Keith put efforts into forming The Clash group when he was just 18. But due to unknown reasons, he lost interest in the group soon. But things were about to change in 1978. He formed Public Image LTD. This group included some popular names like Johnny Lydon, John Wardle, and Jim Walker. The group had a guitarist (Keith), a bassist (John), a singer (Johnny), and a drummer (Jim)
The band soon released their first album in 1978, which was titled ‘Public Image: First Issue. The album was loved by the public. The band started attaining success due to their unique style and rendition. In 1979 they released the Metal Box, which went on to become one of the most p[opular and well-known post-punk albums. But despite all the success and fame, Keith decided to leave the band in 1983. Years later, Keith revealed the reason that once he became well-versed with all the rules and the skills, he didn’t desire to become like any other monotonous guitar player. He didn’t ever wish to bound his creativity and let himself explore as much as he could.
Keith remained out of the limelight for a few years. He then started penning down his autobiography, which was titled “I Was A Teen Guitarist for The Clash.” This was issued in 2015. It was widely read, and in 2019, the book was then converted into a documentary. This documentary was released in 2019. Also, Keith and Hammond were working on another book and also creating music pieces. Well, the subject of the book and music isn’t really known, but it was widely reported that this would be about Public Image Ltd.
Keith Levene’s Net Worth
Keith was a wealthy man. Due to consecutive successful albums, he kept on amassing huge fame as well as fortune. Several sources peg his net worth at $ 2 million. He and his wife, Shelly Da Cunha, formed a company in 1985. He earned most of his income through performances and the release of albums. Most of his albums would sell like hotcakes and thus helped him rake a good fortune. There are not many details available about his other sources of income. But he had recently started taking an interest in Bitcoin. He was regularly investing in Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency. Keith had just finished his second book, and now after his death, it is expected that the sales of the book would surely see a significant boost.
Keith loved working with guitars. He was known for his creative style. He was about to release a book about Pil. Keith was with his family during his final hours. He has left behind his partner, Kate Ransford, and sister Jill Bennett. The family has requested privacy.
Keith will always be remembered for his immense contribution. He has left a lasting legacy in pop and rock music genres. He had a huge influence on the post-punk music era and is widely remembered these days by veteran musicians. The most spectacular thing about him was the way he introduced innovation and creativity into guitar work. He was the one who discovered the various innovative ways one could play guitar with. His legacy will always remain alive in the hearts of music lovers.