Don Everly of pioneering rock ’n’ roll duo The Everly Brothers has died at 84

The Everly Brothers were idols of Paul McCartney and John Lennon and were among the first artists inaugurated into the Rock Hall.

Don Everly, the last surviving half of the pioneering rock ’n’ roll duo The Everly Brothers, has died at the age of 84.

The musician passed away at his home in Nashville, Tennessee yesterday (22 August) from an undisclosed cause. His family issued a statement to the Los Angeles Times: “Don lived by what he felt in his heart. Don expressed his appreciation for the ability to live his dreams … with his soulmate and wife, Adela, and sharing the music that made him an Everly Brother.”

Don and Phil Everly’s signature close harmony vocals made a lasting impression on many top acts of the 1960s, including The Beatles, The Beach Boys and Bee Gees. They were among the first artists inaugurated into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1986, alongside Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Buddy Holly and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Before Don and his younger brother Phil made their mark as The Everly Brothers, they performed with their parents, Ike and Margaret, as The Everly Family.

In 1956, the brothers began penning and recording their own tunes. Chet Atkins, who was a family friend, introduced them to the music publishing company Acuff-Rose, which in turn brought them over to Cadence Records, where they recorded their first million-seller hit Bye Bye Love in 1957.

The Everly Brothers released 21 studio albums across their career and garnered eleven No. 1 singles. In 1973, the pair broke up in the middle of a show at Knott’s Berry Farm and would not reunite musically for over a decade.

They eventually returned to perform at London’s Royal Albert Hall in 1983 and released four more studio albums. Phil Everly died of pulmonary disease in 2014 at the age of 74.

Tributes to Don Everly from the music world have poured in online. See a selection below: