Unfortunately today we have to report sad news for the music world, since the American composer, Alan Merrill, died at the age of 69 after fighting for a few days against COVID-19 or coronavirus. This was reported by his own daughter, Laura on his Facebook account, who with an emotional and forceful message dedicated a few words of farewell to his father in the midst of the pandemic that humanity is facing.
“The coronavirus took my father this morning. I was given two minutes to say goodbye before I was fired. He seemed to be at peace and when I left there was still a ray of hope. I walked 50 blocks to my house still with hope in my heart but When I entered the door of my apartment I received the news that he was gone. If something good can come of this, I beg you to take it seriously. Money does not matter. People are dying. Don’t think that it won’t happen to you or your strong family, ”was something that Merrill’s daughter said.
Alan Merrill was born in New York on February 19, 1951, from an early age he became interested in music, forming some groups in his youth although he did not know the success in his native country because by 1968 he moved to Japan where he unexpectedly became a rock star thanks to songs like “Aoi Bata” and for his work with bands like The Lead or Collins vodka together with the Japanese musicians Hiroshi ‘Monsieur’ Kamayatsu and Hiroshi Oguchi.
In the mid-70s he decided to move to London to continue his dream of having a successful group and he did it, because in 1974 together with drummer Paul Varley and guitarist Jake Hooker founded The Arrows. With them he managed to enter the popularity charts with songs like “Touch Too Much” and “My Last Night With You”.
Despite all these successes, perhaps the greatest of his career was having composed with Hooker “I Love Rock‘ N ’Roll”, that strikeout song that we are sure that anyone has heard. Although it was one of those songs that immediately made everyone do air guitar, Merrill and The Arrows kept her as a B-side until they decided to play her in the band’s only televised performance.
It wasn’t until Joan Jett found and covered the song in the early 1980s that Alan Merrill’s name became recognized in the United States.. After this the musician kept composing albums already solo and playing all over the world.
Some artists who had a chance to work with him, like herself Joan Jett and Meat Loaf they mourned Merrill’s death and wrote some words for the musician, remembering him as one of the most important creative minds they had the privilege of knowing.