Legendary US soul singer Solomon Burke died today (October 10) at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport aged 70.
The self-proclaimed King of Rock & Soul had been due to perform at a club in the city on Tuesday. He leaves 21 children and 90 grandchildren.
Dutch national broadcaster NOS said the singer died on a plane early this morning after arriving on a flight from Los Angeles.
The cause of death has not yet been announced.
Born in Philadelphia, Burke rose to prominence in the ’60s when he signed with Ahmet Ertegun on Atlantic Records. His first hit record was a cover of the country song ‘Just Out Of Reach’.
In 1964, Burke wrote and recorded arguably his biggest song ‘Everybody Needs Somebody to Love’, covered by The Rolling Stones and Wilson Pickett.
Burke was inducted into the the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in 2001. His career enjoyed a revival in 2002 with his album ‘Don’t Give Up On Me’, which featured songs written by artists including Bob Dylan, Brian Wilson and Van Morrison and some written specifically for the record.
Big in body, as well as influence and spirit, Burke famously performed on a specially made throne.
Jerry Wexler, Atlantic’s in-house legend of a producer, dubbed Burke “the best soul singer of all time”.