Guitarist Ian Bairnson has sadly passed away at the age of 69 after battling dementia for at least five years.
The musician was known for his appearances in Kate Bush’s 1978 hit Wuthering Heights and as a member of the rock bands The Alan Parsons Project and Pilots.
In a post shared by his wife Leila on Saturday, she confirmed that Ian had passed away on Friday April 7th.
She described his battle with the syndrome as “long” and “challenging” and called her late husband the “cutest” and “kindest”.
Sharing a picture with Ian on Instagram, Leila wrote, “It is with profound sadness and regret that I inform you that my loving husband Ian Bairnson passed away on Friday April 7th.”
Tragic: Guitarist Ian Bairnson has died this week aged 69 after a “challenging” battle with dementia
Band Member: Ian was a member of the Scottish rock band Pilots (pictured 1975) and The Alan Parsons Project
“Ian was the sweetest, kindest and most loving husband I could ever wish for and I take comfort in the fact that he is now resting up there in his very own piece, Blue Blue Sky.
“Though Ian has left us, his musical legacy remains with us and will forever delight and brighten our lives as his did.”
She continued to thank the healthcare professionals for their help, adding, “I would like to thank the doctors and nurses at Frimley Park Hospital, the managers and carers at Lynwood Care Home, and our families and close friends for the love and support they have shown us have during these challenging years of Ian’s long battle with dementia. ❤️’.
The musician from Lerwick, a town on the Scottish Shetland Islands, was a member of the Alan Parsons Project between 1975 and 1990.
Created by Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson, they were accompanied by guitarist Ian, Arranger Andrew Powell, bassist/vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott and vocalists Zenny Zakatek and Chris Rainbow.
Ian was also a member of the Scottish rock band Pilots and had a very famous solo in Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights.
But despite the song’s popularity, he wasn’t actually a fan of the famous solo – he admitted in the years to come that his dislike for it was purely for “guitaristic reasons”.
Ian stopped performing back in 2018 when it was revealed he had been diagnosed with a “progressive neurological disorder”.
Tough: In a post shared on Saturday by his wife Leila, she confirmed that Ian passed away on Friday April 7th
Iconic song: While also boasting a very famous solo in Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights
A statement published on his Facebook page revealed: “Me and Ian’s family would like to draw your attention to the fact that he was diagnosed some time ago with a progressive neurological condition which is affecting his communication skills.
“As a result, he will no longer perform in public, but continues to play the guitar and piano on a daily basis for his own enjoyment. We would like to thank you for your continued support over the years and assure you that he is otherwise very healthy and well cared for.”
On his personal life, Ian was married to wife Leila for 24 years this May and entered into a relationship two years before their marriage.
The couple don’t appear to share any children, but often shared pictures with their beloved pets, dog Dolly and cat Poppy, on social media.
Family: The couple don’t appear to share any children but have often shared pictures with their beloved pets, dog Dolly and cat Poppy, on social media
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