Bay City Rollers guitarist Alan Longmuir dies at 70

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Bay City Rollers guitarist Alan Longmuir has died at the age of 70.

He passed away “peacefully surrounded by family” after reportedly falling ill while on holiday and returning to Edinburgh for treatment.

The band’s frontman, Les McKeown, tweeted a picture of him with the message: “RIP Alan Longmuir. The original Bay City Roller.”

Alan Longmuir photographed in 2015
Image:
Alan Longmuir photographed in 2015

Longmuir’s family say he had an “extraordinary heart” and described himself as “just a plumber from Edinburgh who got lucky”.

“He brought so much love and kindness to everyone he met, and he leaves a huge hole in our family,” they said in a statement tweeted by journalist Liam Rudden, who wrote Bay City Rollers musical I Ran With the Gang.

Alan Longmuir (left) with the Bay City Rollers at an awards show in Wembley in 1975
Image:
Alan Longmuir (left) with the Bay City Rollers at an awards show in Wembley in 1975

The band was formed in the late 1960s but did not achieve big chart success until 1974 when Shang-A-Lang reached number two in the UK singles chart.

The following year, they made number one with Bye, Bye, Baby and Give a Little Love.

Described by British Hit Singles & Albums as “tartan teen sensations from Edinburgh”, they briefly became worldwide idols.

The five-piece band sold more than 100m records, played sell-out tours and had their own TV show before splitting in 1978.

In 2015, Longmuir joined McKeown and another band member, Stuart Wood, for a Bay City Rollers reunion with gigs quickly selling out.

Alan Longmuir (left) and Les McKeown, also of the Bay City Rollers, performing at T in the Park in 2016
Image:
Alan Longmuir (left) and Les McKeown, performing at T in the Park in 2016

Longmuir’s family said: “We are devastated to share the news that Alan has passed away peacefully surrounded by family.

“He would humbly say he was ‘just a plumber from Edinburgh who got lucky’.

“However, we are the lucky ones; the ones that were lucky enough to have Alan as part of our lives.”

Rudden said Longmuir was “one of the most gentle, generous and kind-hearted people I’ve ever known and touched the lives of all he met with a smile that made them feel special”.



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