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Prog-rock singer Gary Pickford-Hopkins loses cancer battle

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Jun 24, 2013 | 8:27pm EDT

Singer Gary Pickford-Hopkins, who appeared on former Yes star Rick Wakeman's groundbreaking 1970s concept albums, has lost his battle with cancer, aged 65. Pickford-Hopkins was a featured vocalist on Journey to the Center of the Earth, as well as The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. He also fronted the band Wild Turkey. Remembering his late pal in a statement posted on his website, Wakeman calls the singer "one of the nicest guys you could ever wish to meet," adding, "I wish Gary all the peace that there is to offer him after his long battle with cancer and my heart goes out to his family and friends." Wakeman tells the South Wales Evening Post, "Gary was such a great singer and he had lovely control and feeling in his voice. I always felt he deserved a lot more recognition than he got as a singer, though he had that recognition from his peers and his contemporaries." The celebrated keyboard player plans to add a dedication to Pickford-Hopkins on his upcoming Journey to the Center of the Earth re-release. The singer passed away on Sunday (23Jun13).

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