Wilko Johnson gives final performance

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 11 March 2013
Wilko Johnson

Wilko Johnson

Former Dr. Feelgood member Wilko Johnson gave his final ever performance in London last night (11.03.13), bowing out from the spotlight after being diagnosed with inoperable cancer

Wilko Johnson gave his final ever performance in London last night (11.03.13).

The guitarist - a founding member of Dr. Feelgood and former member of The Blockheads - is retiring from the spotlight after being diagnosed with inoperable cancer of the pancreas last year and being given only months to live.

Wilko had organised a mini tour to say farewell to his fans, which concluded at Koko, London, last night (10.03.13).

The crowd were in a particularly jovial mood as Wilko took to the stage, flanked by bassist Norman Watt-Roy and drummer Dylan Howe, and delivered a version of 'Down by the Jetty', with his trademark lunges toward the crowd and side-shuffling footsteps.

Wilko appeared in high spirits and deceptively good health throughout the set, as he jammed out tracks including 'Roxette' and 'Back In the Night'.

The band welcomed an accordionist to the stage for a cover of 'Woolly Bully', and returned for two encores.

The evening ended with a take on Chuck Berrry's 'Bye Bye Johnny', including a poignant section where Wilko talked of a train which came for his baby and was soon to take him too. Many of the crowd absorbed the spirit and message of the song and waved back at Wilko on the stage to see him off.

The guitarist has previously told how his greatest wish was to complete his shows before the cancer took hold.

He said in January: "This position I'm in is so strange, in that I do feel fit and yet I know death is upon me.

"I'm not hoping for a miracle cure or anything. I just hope it spares me long enough to do these gigs - then I'll be a happy man.

"I've had a fantastic life. When I think about the things that have happened to me and the things I've done, I think anybody who asks for more would just be being greedy. I don't wanna be greedy."

Wilko Johnson

The redoubtable Dr Feelgood guitarist and band rock it up Canvey Island-style; after undergoing radical surgery to treat his hitherto-believed-to-be terminal cancer, the indomitable Johnson is back, minus one pancreas but with added vim and vigour.

The Assembly, Leamington Spa

Sat 25 Aug

£28.50 / 0845 888 7581

Cottingham Civic Hall

Fri 24 Aug

£40.50 / 01482 392706

The Leadmill, Sheffield

Thu 23 Aug

£27.50 / 0114 221 2828


1. stephen.moon2367@btinternet.com12 Mar 2013, 8:27pm Report

Fantastic gig by Wilko at the London Koko on Sunday (10/3). Top man. Hope a DVD of it is released in near future.

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