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Australian music icon Frank Ifield dies at 86

Famous for his mid-song yodelling, Australian singer Frank Ifield has died at the age of 86.

Famous for his mid-song yodelling, Australian singer Frank Ifield has died at the age of 86. Photo: Getty

Australian music icon Frank Ifield, famous for yodelling in his songs, has died at the age of 86.

Ifield died peacefully in his sleep on Saturday night, his friend, historian and music journalist Glenn A Baker announced on Facebook.

“I just took a call from David Ifield, telling me that his brother Frank Ifield peacefully passed on this Saturday night, at age 86. There is so much to be said about this remarkable man, who had four No.1s in Britain, three of them before The Beatles (who he had briefly support him in concert),” Baker posted.

I Remember You became an indelible hit all around the world and a perfect signature song. It topped the UK charts for seven weeks.

“This is not the time to say any more than my thoughts are with Frank’s brothers and his wife Carole and to say how fortunate I was to see him earlier this year. I’m still gathering my thoughts.”

Ifield was born in Britain but was raised in Australia before moving back to England in 1959.

Growing up in Sydney, he developed a love of country music and yodelling and he began writing his own songs when his grandmother gifted him a guitar at the age of 13.

By the time he was 19, Ifield had already released 44 records and had become the top recording artist in Australia and New Zealand.

When he was back in England, Ifield’s music became very popular in Britain. In the 1960s he had four No.1 hits on the UK singles chart: I Remember You, Lovesick Blues, The Wayward Wind and Confessin’ That I Love You. 

Ifield introduced The Beatles to his fans by choosing the Fab Four to open for him on tour.

He continued to release new albums throughout the 1970s and ’80s before stepping away from recording.

In 2005, Ifield co-wrote his autobiography, I Remember Me: the First 25 Years, with Pauline Halford.

Four years later, he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for service to the arts as an entertainer.

The musician is survived by his wife Carole Wood, and his two children from his previous marriage to Gillian Bowden.

Topics: Music
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