07 August 2020 14:43
Game Of Love singer Wayne Fontana has passed away aged 74. The Mindbenders frontman, real name Glyn Geoffrey Ellis, passed away at Stockport's Stepping Hill Hospital with his partner by his side on Thursday. A representative for his family said: 'On behalf of the family of Wayne Fontana regret to announce he passed away this afternoon at Stepping Hill Hospital, Stockport. 'His long term partner was by his side. Known for his 1965 hit Game of Love.
Family asks for privacy at this time.' Way back when: Game Of Love singer Wayne Fontana has passed away aged 74 (pictured in 2008) Tributes flooded in for the 1960s icon from fans and celebrity friends. DJ Tony Blackburn, 77, led tributes as he took to Twitter to pen: 'So sorry to hear about the passing of great 60's icon Wayne Fontana yesterday.... As Sounds Of The Sixties has been recorded already for tomorrow we will do a tribute on Saturday week's show.' Other fans penned: 'RIP Wayne Fontana.. such a character & still had such a great voice. Will be sadly missed on the 60s circuit Crying face...
Another great 60s rock n roll legend leaves us'. Back in the day: The Mindbenders frontman, real name Glyn Geoffrey Ellis, passed away at Stockport's Stepping Hill Hospital with his partner by his side (pictured in 1973) Sad times: DJ Tony Blackburn, 77, led tributes as he took to Twitter to pen: 'So sorry to hear about the passing of great 60's icon Wayne Fontana yesterday' Sad times: Tributes flooded in for the 1960s icon from fans and celebrity friends The rocker found fame in 1964 when he and his band, the Mindbenders, had hits like Game of Love - a US number one - and Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um. After he quit the group the next year - walking off in mid-concert - the Mindbenders enjoyed their biggest success, A Groovy Kind of Love. Following his stint in the spotlight, Wayne became embroiled in legal troubles in 2007, when he became locked in a shock battle with HM Revenue & Customs. In November 2007, Wayne was given a jail term for 11 months after setting fire to a bailiff's car in a row over an unpaid congestion charge. A judge said the troubled singer deserved prison after carrying out the attack in the bizarre belief he was the victim of an Establishment conspiracy. Success: The rocker (right) found fame in 1964 when he and his band, the Mindbenders, had hits like Game of Love - a US number one - and Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um Yet he was allowed to walk free from court immediately after already serving the equivalent of his term while held under the Mental Heath Act. The star - then 61 - had already been locked up since appearing in the dock dressed as the Lady of Justice earlier that year. Doctors diagnosed him with a paranoid illness and depression yet announced in court that they no longer believed he was a danger to himself or others. A court heard how he reached his "tipping point" when bailiff Paul Stott and a colleague visited his home over an unpaid London congestion charge. Wayne Fontana Wayne Fontana, who found pop stardom in the 1960s with songs including Game Of Love, has died at the age of 74. With his band The Mindbenders, the Manchester-born singer broke into the UK top five in 1964 with Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um. They hit number one in the US and number two in the UK the following year with Game Of Love. But he left to go solo later that year, reputedly quitting in the middle of a concert. After going solo in 1965, he went on to have top 20 hits with Pamela Pamela and Come On Home. Wayne Fontana (second left) and the Mindbenders DJ Tony Blackburn paid tribute on Twitter, writing: "So sorry to hear about the passing of great 60s icon Wayne Fontana yesterday. He was a lovely guy and gave us some great songs." A statement on behalf of his family said he died on Thursday at Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport with his long-term partner at his side. Born Glyn Ellis, the singer's stage surname was borrowed from Elvis Presley's drummer DJ Fontana. He was among the performers at the first Glastonbury Festival in 1970, but struggled to sustain his solo career as the decade went on. "Then I went into self-retirement, drank too much and didn't know where I was half the time," he told the Daily Express in 2017. He gave up drink in 1977 when he joined the 60s touring circuit. 'Laughter, tears and jail cells' In 2007, Fontana was back in the headlines when he was sent to jail for pouring petrol over a bailiff's car and setting it alight. At the time, his lawyer admitted his client had been "in considerable contact" with a number of bailiffs, but had no vendetta against them. The singer angered the judge by turning up to court dressed as the Lady of Justice, carrying a sword and scales, and wearing a crown, cape and dark glasses. He was sentenced to 11 months. On Facebook, Herman's Hermits frontman Peter Noone wrote: "Wayne Wayne don't go away. "After 59 years of friendship, laughter, tears, jail cells and lost brain bells [sic], we have handed over our lovely lead singer Wayne Fontana to the big band in ROCK AND ROLL HEAVEN." Follow us on Facebook, or on Twitter @BBCNewsEnts. If you have a story suggestion email [email protected]