Paul Dufour obituary

My brother, Paul Dufour, who has died aged 74 from most cancers of the mind and lungs, was a sought-after musician, who, in his 50s, grew to become the unique drummer with the rock band the Libertines, fronted by Pete Doherty and Carl Barât.

Paul joined the Libertines in 1997 earlier than they grew to become well-known. As a brand new, unrecorded teenage band, they wanted a drummer, and the recording engineer/producer Gwyn Mathias, a good friend of Paul’s, instructed him to them. He left the band after two or three years, however in 2014 labored with Doherty once more, accompanying him – on cajon drum – at two venues (together with the O2 in Oxford) when Pete was doing a solo tour with simply his guitar.

Within the early 90s, Paul had co-founded a recording studio, Odessa Wharf, in Rotherhithe, south-east London, with Gwyn. He performed drums with many bands, and notably loved his time – from 2004 to 2017 – with a small jazz combo referred to as Venus Edge, led by the pianist Anthony Donovan.

Paul Dufour once backed the comedian Tommy Cooper, who admired him for the precision of his drum rolls
Paul Dufour as soon as backed the comic Tommy Cooper, who admired him for the precision of his drum rolls

Together with his good friend Philippe Janoyer, he composed and recorded an unreleased ambient music CD referred to as Visions of Rhythm in 1999. He additionally backed the comic Tommy Cooper for 2 weeks at a membership in Birmingham; they bought on nicely as a result of Tommy cherished Paul’s precision within the drum rolls. Even when in poor health in his final months, he continued to play, showing on two punk-style albums of the singer Clive Franklin.

Born in London, to Violet (nee Camp), a waitress, and Frederick Dufour, a lorry driver, Paul attended many faculties, as our household typically moved due to housing and monetary challenges. Whereas he was at main college in Norwich, I purchased Paul his first toy drum set from my paper-round cash. He continued from there, with an expert drum package throughout his secondary college years. He went to artwork college in Norwich to do A-levels, then on to Coventry College of Artwork to do a common artwork course, however dropped out to focus on music and performing.

For 10 years, throughout the Eighties and into the 90s, Paul labored for the Imperial Most cancers Analysis Fund (now Most cancers Analysis UK), as a driver, transporting workers, and animal components for analysis, whereas additionally negotiating appearances at gigs and live shows.

Paul had a long-term admiration for Airto Moreira, the Brazilian jazz percussionist who joined the Miles Davis band when he arrived in New York from Brazil, and for Airto’s spouse, the singer Flora Purim. We frequently went to Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Membership and chatted with Flora until the early hours. He recorded an unreleased single with their daughter, Diana Purim, additionally a singer.

Though their marriage led to divorce, Paul’s former spouse, Michele, remained his closest good friend, changing into, successfully, his carer. He’s survived by Michele and her son, Max, and by me.

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