Daevid Allen, Founder of Soft Machine and Gong, Has Six Months To Live
Psychedelic pioneer and all around character, Daevid Allen has announced that he has only six months to live. In a new posting on the band's website, Allen shared the sad news:
OK so I have had my PET-CAT scans (which is essentially a full body viewing gallery for cancer specialists) and so it is now confirmed that the invading cancer has returned to successfully establish dominant residency in my neck. The original surgery took much of it out, but the cancer has now recreated itself with renewed vigor while also spreading to my lung.
The cancer is now so well established that I have now been given approximately six months to live. So My view has Changed: I am not interested in endless surgical operations and in fact it has come as a relief to know that the end is in sight.
I am a great believer in "The Will of the Way Things Are" and I also believe that the time has come to stop resisting and denying and to surrender to the way it is. I can only hope that during this journey, I have somehow contributed to the happiness in the lives of a few other fellow humans. I believe I have done my best to heal, dear friends and that you have been enormously helpful in supporting me through this time
So Thank you SO much for being there with me, for the Ocean of Love and Now, importantly, Thank you for starting the process of letting go of me, of mourning then transforming and celebrating this death coming up - this is how you can contribute, this would be a great gift from those emotionally and spiritually involved with me.
I love you and will be with you always - Daevid xxx
Along with fellow visionaries Kevin Ayers, Robert Wyatt and Mike Ratledge, he formed Soft Machine, one of England's first true underground groups. Playing alongside like-minded ensembles such as Pink Floyd, Soft Machine combined elements of jazz and psychedelia into their brand rock and roll.
Allen left the band before they made their first official album. In 1969 he formed Gong, who would go on to release a string of classic records -- including 'Angel's Egg' and 'Flying Teapot' -- that remain undefinable and truly unique. Watch a wild live clip from 1973 below:
Allen has remained musically active all along, floating in and out of one Gong incarnation to another. In 2014, Gong released 'I See You,' arguably their finest album in many years. And for a brief side note, you know who was one of Gong's biggest fans? Sherman Hemsley, a.k.a. George Jefferson! Read all about it here.
We wish the absolute best to Allen and his family as they endure this unimaginable hard time.