Nolan Porter, the acclaimed singer whose music rose to prominence as part of the UK’s northern soul movement in the 1970s, has died.
Porter’s death earlier this week has been confirmed by multiple sources today (February 5), as Clash notes. He was 71.
The LA-born singer, who also released music under the monikers Nolan, N.F. Porter and Frederick II, was best known for his songs ‘If I Could Only Be Sure’ and ‘Keep On Keepin’ On’, both of which became popular northern soul hits in the 1970s.
He released two albums – 1970’s ‘No Apologies’ and 1972’s ‘Nolan’ – during his career, and continued working as a musician and comedian up until his death.
Porter’s ‘Keep On Keepin’ On’ provided the inspiration for the riff heard on Joy Division‘s ‘Interzone’, which featured on the band’s debut album ‘Unknown Pleasures’ in 1979, after the band (then known as Warsaw) recorded their own version of Nolan’s track the previous year.
A number of tributes to Porter have been posted on social media since the news of his passing has emerged – you can see a selection of the tributes below.
There aren’t enough words on here to express our sadness in the passing today of our dear friend and brother Nolan Porter. You taught us so much in life & music and we will all raise a glass to your beautiful memory/legacy tonight. Sleep well brother Jonesy & the SF family xx pic.twitter.com/AE2xcXfVzV
— Stone Foundation (@stonefoundation) February 5, 2021
Rest in peace Nolan Porter. Safe travels on your new journey 🌹 https://t.co/o1jtyQQzuS
— Andy Crofts (@andyjcrofts) February 5, 2021