US singer Emitt Rhodes dies at age 70

Rhodes' last album release was in 2016

American singer-songwriter Emitt Rhodes has died aged 70, according to representatives and collaborators.

The musician passed away in his sleep overnight, as confirmed to Pitchfork.

Rhodes was known for his contributions to power pop and psychedelic pop during the 20th century. During his career, he joined multiple bands including Palace Guard and The Merry Go Round. The latter released a single self-titled album in 1967 through A&M and separated two years later.


Following his group work, Rhodes went on to release five solo records, with his self-titled debut warmly received by critics.

His last solo studio album was ‘Rainbow Ends’, released in 2016 through Omnivore. It marked 43 years since his previous album, ‘Farewell To Paradise’, due in part to legal battles between Rhodes and his label for not fulfilling contractual obligations. ‘Rainbow Ends’ featured contributions from The Bangles’ Susanna Hoffs, Aimee Mann and Jon Brion, among others.

Artists and other figures from the industry mourned Rhodes’ death, including Hoffs, Omnivore and Sadie Depuis, who said Rhodes’ home studio work “is a reason I started both Speedy Ortiz & later Sad13”.

Director Tony Blass, who created a documentary based on Rhodes’ career, also celebrated the late singer’s life on Twitter.

“I feel honored and blessed to have worked and spent time with him for the past 12 years,” he said.

“I tried my best to tell his story, share his music and spend some quality time with him. We usually got completely drunk together.”