Folk singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot, a Canadian icon who Bob Dylan once referred to as a “rare talent,” passed away in Toronto on Monday.
Lightfoot was 84 years old. Representative Victoria Lord confirmed that Lightfoot died at a Toronto hospital early Tuesday morning, but did not elaborate on his cause of death. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was quick to offer tribute to the musician on Twitter.
“We have lost one of our greatest singer-songwriters,” Trudeau wrote. “Gordon Lightfoot captured our country’s spirit in his music – and in doing so, he helped shape Canada’s soundscape. May his music continue to inspire future generations, and may his legacy live on forever.”
Lightfoot secured five Grammy nominations during his career, as well as winning the Canadian equivalent, the Juno award, 17 times.
He was also responsible for composing more than 200 songs, many of which were covered by the most famous musicians in the world, such as Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley and Barbra Streisand.
Some of his most famous songs include “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald,” which told the true story of a freighter sinking on Lake Superior. Another hit, “If You Could Read My Mind,” told the story of a failing marriage.
Saw him here in Toledo, Ohio in concert… about 1970’s?
The unfortunate ship he sang about, Edmund Fitzgerald, was a regular into the port of Toledo… it often passed right by us as we fished in Lake Erie… may have it and us on 8mm movie film…