Keith Levene, founding member of punk band The Clash, has died aged 65

A tribute was paid to Keith Levene, a founding member of punk bands The Clash and Public Image Ltd, who has died aged 65.

Levene is celebrated as an innovative guitarist who helped shape the sound of punk. He co-wrote the song “What’s My Name” from The Clash’s debut album in 1977.

Singer-songwriter Lloyd Cole described Levene as a “true guitar genius”.

Levene, who had liver cancer, died at his home in Norfolk, The guard reported.

He left The Clash before they released their first record and then formed Flowers of Romance with Sid Vicious.

After the Sex Pistols disbanded in 1978, Levene teamed up with vocalist John Lydon, along with drummer Jim Walker and bassist Jah Wobble to form Public Image Ltd (PiL).

Author Adam Hammond, with whom Levene reportedly co-wrote a book on PiL, wrote on Twitter: “Keith was undoubtedly one of the most innovative, daring and influential guitarists of all time.

“Keith strove to create a new paradigm in music, and with willing collaborators John Lydon and Jah Wobble, he did just that. His guitar work defined the nine minutes of ‘Theme’, the first track on the first PiL album what alternative music should be.”

He added: “Not only did Keith help make PiL the most important band of the time, but he also formed The Clash with Mick Jones and was a huge influence on their early sound.

“So much of what we hear today is due to Keith’s work, some credited, most not.” Keith Levene, founding member of punk band The Clash, has died aged 65


JOE HERNANDEZ is a USTimeToday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. JOE HERNANDEZ joined USTimeToday in 2022 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

Related Articles

Back to top button