Songwriter was dubbed the 'seventh Python'

Above: Comedic writer and actor Neil Innes,
Above: Comedic writer and actor Neil Innes,

LONDON • Comedic writer and actor Neil Innes, who created a Beatles parody group called Rutles and frequently worked with the members of Monty Python, has died at age 75.

He died of natural causes on Sunday night, his agent Nigel Morton said.

A statement released on behalf of his family said: "We have lost a beautiful, kind, gentle soul whose music and songs touched the heart of everyone and whose intellect and search for truth inspired us all."

Innes was such a frequent collaborator of the Monty Python troupe that he was sometimes called the "seventh Python".

A musician as well as a writer, he wrote songs for the popular film Monty Python And The Holy Grail (1975), appeared in Monty Python's Life Of Brian (1979) and toured Britain and Canada with the group.

He was also a member of Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, later renamed Bonzo Dog Band.

One of their hit songs, I'm The Urban Spaceman (1968), won Innes an Ivor Novello award.

Colleagues posted tributes to him on Twitter, including prominent British actor Mark Gatiss, who fondly wrote: "Sweet dreams, sweet idiot."


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 01, 2020, with the headline 'Songwriter was dubbed the 'seventh Python''. Subscribe