Peter Green, co-founder of rock band Fleetwood Mac, has died at age of 73, according to a law firm acting on behalf of his family.
“It is with great sadness that the family of Peter Green announce his death this weekend, peacefully in his sleep,” Swan Turton LLP, solicitors acting on behalf of his family, said in a statement.
The blues guitarist and singer-songwriter started the band alongside drummer Mick Fleetwood and bass guitarist John McVie in London in 1967. He left the group a few years later in 1969 after struggling with mental illness.
Fleetwood told The Associated Press in 2017 that Green deserves the lion’s share of the credit for the band’s success.
“Peter was asked why did he call the band Fleetwood Mac. He said, ‘Well, you know I thought maybe I’d move on at some point and I wanted Mick and John (McVie) to have a band.’ End of story, explaining how generous he was,” said Fleetwood, who described Green as a standout musician in an era of great guitarists.
Green was so fundamental to the band that in its early days it was called Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac, the co-founder added.
Green became an influential blues rock guitarist. Rolling Stone said he’s considered one of the best 100 greatest guitarists ever.
He also made his mark as a composer, with “Albatross,” “Oh Well” and “Black Magic Woman.”
The dreamy instrumental “Albatross” — which John Lennon said influenced his song “Sun King” from the Beatles album “Abbey Road” — reached the top of the U.K. singles chart in 1968.
Following his departure from Fleetwood Mac, Green returned for sporadic guest appearances.
He ultimately reclaimed his musical career when in 1998 he appeared in New York to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame along with his bandmates. He then continued to perform and tour over the years.
Divorced from Jane Samuels Green, Green is survived by their daughter, Rose Samuels-Greenbaum.
Diana Dasrath , The Associated Press and Variety contributed.