Streetheart Singer Kenny Shields Dies At 69
Kenny Shields, lead singer of Canadian band Streetheart, died Friday in Winnipeg. He was 69.
Formed in the late ‘70s, Streetheart won the Juno Award for Most Promising Group of the Year in 1980 and released six studio albums that spawned hits like “Look in Your Eyes” and “Action.”
Shields died at around 3:00 a.m. at Winnipeg's St. Boniface General Hospital with his wife Elena, daughter Julia and sister Sharlene at his side.
"RIP my brother," bandmate and friend Jeff Neill wrote on Facebook. "You will be missed. You will never be forgotten."
After struggling to remember lyrics during a Canada Day performance, Shields was taken to hospital and diagnosed with hypoxia, an oxygen deficiency.
Kenny Shields, pictured third from left, in a Streetheart publicity photo.
Shields was born in Saskatchewan and got his musical start as a member of Witness Incorporated, which toured with acts like Cream.
In 1970, he was critically injured in a car accident. Shields later moved to Winnipeg and eventually formed Streetheart.
“I never really ever aspired to be in anything like this," Shields said at a ceremony to induct the band in the Western Canadian Music Association Hall of Fame in 2003.
Among those paying tribute to the singer is Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall, who tweeted: “RIP Sask's own Kenny Shields. What Kind of Love is This ..still a favourite.”
Actor and comedian Brent Butt called Shields “such a huge unique voice in Canadian rock.”
Club Regent in Winnipeg, where Shields often performed, remembered him as “a genuinely kind and wonderful person and a true professional.”
The surviving members of Streetheart plan to perform Aug. 29 at the Winnipeg Classic RockFest in tribute to Shields.