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RIP Spirit of the West's John Mann: 1962-2019

John Mann, the iconic singer-songwriter who fronted the beloved band Spirit of the West, has passed away at the age of 57. His family says he passed away peacefully in Vancouver as the inevitable result of Early Onset Alzheimer’s Disease, with which he was diagnosed several years ago.

"Surrounded by friends and loving family until the end, all were reminded of John’s rich legacy. He was a potent force in music, acting -- onstage, in movies and on television, and was world renowned as a songwriter. As well, he was a foresightful activist and charitable figure for several worthwhile organizations. His work will resound long after his untimely passing," read the statement from his family and released by his friend and publicist Eric Alper.

Throughout Mann's nearly 40-year career, the four-time Juno Award nominee's songs were widely loved in the music community for their infectious combination of rock and roll, Celtic, pop, and folk influences. His band, Spirit of the West are best known for their classic song "Home for a Rest," which Mann co-wrote for their breakout album Save This House in 1990. He featured in multiple film roles, such as Turbulence 3: Heavy Metat, The Chronicles of Riddick, Reefer Madness (2005), Underworld: Evolution, and The Tall Man.

"John was a man of uncommon courage, was a loyal and beloved friend, a gentleman of great social conscience, and a soul brimming with creativity and enthusiasm," Apler adds. "Most importantly he was a loving father to Harlan and Hattie and a wonderful husband to Jill Daum."

A private memorial service will be held later.

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Michael Raine is the Senior Editor at Canadian Musician. He is also a co-host of the popular Canadian Musician Radio weekly podcast.