Kevin Ayers, a founding member of UK 60s psychedelic band Soft Machine, has died at the age of 68.

Soft Machine were pioneers of musical era that included Pink Floyd, Yes, Hawkwind and Jethro Tull. In their early days Soft Machine often played on shows with Syd Barrett’s Pink Floyd.

Their influence spread to Mike Oldfield who went on to create the epic ‘Tubular Bells’. Oldfield would later accompany Ayers at the June 1, 1974 concert at the Rainbow Theatre, London which became his live solo album and play on his 1992 album ‘Still Life With Guitar’.

Ayers last album was ‘The Unfairground’ in 2007. It featured members of Teenage Fanclub and Phil Manzanera from Roxy Music. It was also Kevin’s first album in 15 years.

Kevin Ayers was considered a recluse in recent years. He retired from the industry and was living in France in the village of Montolieu. He is survived by two daughters Rachel and Galen and sister Kate.

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