ELP’s Greg Lake dies of cancer, at 69

ELP’s Greg Lake dies of cancer, at 69


norman lebrecht

December 08, 2016

Emerson Lake and Palmer – the British prog rock group which used such classical titles as Pictures at an Exhibition, and Fanfare for the Common Man – has suffered a second fatality in nine months with the death today of the singer and guitarist, Greg Lake.

Keith Emerson pre-deceased him in March, of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The group, which disbanded in 1979, were admired by leading classical artists for the depth and sophistication of their original ideas and adaptations.


  • David Murphy says:

    The composer John Mayer basically arranged the Fanfare for the Common Man for ELP, though I don’t think he got properly credited for it. He also basically wrote the Emmerson Piano Concerto, not Emmerson!
    RIP Greg Lake

    • Jeffrey Biegel says:

      Very sad to hear this news yesterday. ELP introduced classical music to many rock fans, and their legacy continues. Regarding the Piano Concerto by Keith, John orchestrated and Keith wrote the entire piano part. The first two movements were written and a fire took down the small cottage Keith composed in–and the only score he had. Keith had to rewrite it and then tore into the third movement with energy fitting his mood at the time. He told me this personally. Needless to say, I miss Keith terribly, but he is with Greg.

  • David Osborne says:

    He had a beautiful voice, was also of course a major part of King Crimson, not to mention the lives of a lot of nerdy teenage boys in the 70s. Strange times.

  • Tom Vissgren says:

    Two out of three giants gone. Since hearing ” Lucky Man” back in 1970 ELP has been an important part of my musical life. Sadly I never got to hesr the band live but was so fortunate to meet Keith and participate on his last album, “The Three Fates”, doing the timp./perc. part to Copland’s Fanfare. Greg Lake’s vocals speaks and sings for it self. R.I.P. Tom Vissgren, Oslo Phil.

  • Steve Levy says:

    Why this group has not been inducted into the R&R Hall of Fame is a travesty. RIP gentlemen. You’re music will always bring me joy. ELP forever!!!