Gong icon Daevid Allen has been told he has six months to live as a result of inoperable cancer – and he’s told fans he’s not going to fight the disease any longer.
The 77-year-old Australian, a founding member of Soft Machine, has asked his followers to begin letting him go. He’d previously undergone surgery to address his illness.
Allen says in a statement: “It is now confirmed that the invading cancer has returned to successfully established dominant residency in my neck. The original surgery took much of it out, but the cancer has recreated itself with renewed vigour, while also spreading to my lung.
“I have now been given approximately six months to live. My view has changed. I am not interested in endless operations. In fact is has come as a relief to know that the end is in sight. I am a great believer in ‘The Will of the Way Things Are’ and I also believe that the time has come to stop resisting and denying and to surrender to the way it is.
“I can only hope that, during this journey, I have somehow contributed to the happiness in the lives of a few other fellow humans.
“I believe I have done my best to heal, dear friends; and that you have been enormously helpful in supporting me through this time. So, thank you for being there with me.
"And now, importantly, thank you for starting the process of letting go of me – of mourning then transforming and celebrating this death coming up. This is how you can contribute. This would be a great gift from those emotionally and spiritually involved with me. I love you and will be with you always.”
Allen moved from Australia to Paris in 1960 and became involved with the beat generation movement. After moving to the UK and forming the Daevid Allen Trio, he co-founded prog pioneers Soft Machine in 1966. He began working under the Gong title three years later.
His recent work includes solo performances, appearances with the Invisible Opera Company Of Tibet and contributions to Andy Bole’s 2014 album Of Blue Splendour.