Andy “Thunderclap” Newman 1943-2016 R.I.P.


Something was indeed in the air… and not just his pipe smoke.

By Blurt Staff

Sad news for fans of British rock, as well as outsider music and general cult artists: Andy Newman, keyboard player of the UK ’60s/’70s band Thunderclap Newman, has passed away at the age of 73. He apparently died on March 29, according to The Guardian. The cause of death has not yet been announced.

The group of course was responsible for the album Hollywood Dream and the ’69 No. 1 hit “Something In The Air,” which the UK paper describes as “a gently euphoric anthem to the prevailing mood of social and political change, it somehow found room for Newman’s jazzy piano solo, a mix of honky-tonk and boogie-woogie styles incorporating crafty rhythmic shifts. The song rushed to the top of the UK charts and stayed there for three weeks. ‘It just happened to be the right moment for that particular song,’  Newman reflected later.” The song went on to become a staple of sixties-themed movies and compilations for decades.


In addition to Newman the group featured songwriter Speedy Keen (vocals, drums, guitar) and Jimmy McCulloch (guitar). They split in 1971, Keen going on to a solo career under the patronage of Pete Townshend, although Newman put the band back together in 2007.

Leave a Reply