Brendan Croker, born on August 15, 1953, was an English musician celebrated for his extensive contributions to multiple genres of music. Croker was not only a solo artist but also a member of various bands, most notably The Notting Hillbillies. His collaborations with music legends like Eric Clapton, Tanita Tikaram, Mark Knopfler, Kevin Coyne, and Chet Atkins further enriched his portfolio. He passed away on September 10, 2023, due to complications from leukemia.

Early Career and Bands

During the late 1980s, Croker was an auxiliary member of The Mekons and a full-time member of Sally Timms and the Drifting Cowgirls. He gained fame primarily with his own occasional backing band, The Five O’Clock Shadows.

With The 5 O’Clock Shadows

Croker’s work with this band includes several albums such as:

  • Central Station Hotel (1985)
  • A Close Shave (1986)
  • Boat Trips in the Bay (1987)
  • Live at the Front Page: The Official Bootleg (1987)
  • Brendan Croker and The 5 O’Clock Shadows (1989)

With The Notting Hillbillies

Croker was also a member of the country-rock band The Notting Hillbillies, with whom he recorded the album Missing…Presumed Having a Good Time in 1990.

With Guy Fletcher

In collaboration with Guy Fletcher, he released the album On The Big Hill in 1988.

With the Serious Offenders

He released two albums with the Serious Offenders:

  • Time Off (1992)
  • Made in Europe (1993)

With Kevin Coyne

Croker collaborated with Kevin Coyne on the album Life Is Almost Wonderful in 2002.

Solo Career

As a solo artist, Croker showcased his versatility through a variety of albums, such as:

  • Country Blues Guitar (1990)
  • The Great Indoors (1991)
  • Redneck State of The Art (1995)
  • The Kershaw Sessions (1995)
  • Three Chord Lovesongs (1996)
  • Not Just A Hillbilly… More Like a Best of Brendan Croker (2000)


Brendan Croker had the privilege of recording with some of the biggest names in the music industry. His collaborations include work with Eric Clapton, Tanita Tikaram, Mark Knopfler, Kevin Coyne, and Chet Atkins.

Death and Legacy

Croker’s death was announced by his fellow Notting Hillbillies member Mark Knopfler, who confirmed that he died from complications related to leukemia on September 10, 2023.

Brendan Croker’s life was a musical journey that spanned multiple genres and collaborations. His talent and versatility left an indelible mark on the world of music, making him a beloved figure who will be greatly missed.