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The saxophonist who played pop music’s most famous solo has died.
Raphael Ravenscroft was paid just £27.50 for playing the recognisable riff on Gerry Rafferty’s 1978 hit Baker Street but went on to make approximately £80,000 a year in royalties from the track.
At the time he was an unknown session player but after Baker Street was released found fame almost overnight.
Ravenscroft then went on to earn £5,000 a day working with John Lennon, Pink Floyd, Mike Oldfield, Marvin Gaye and Tina Turner.
The hit reached No 3 in the UK charts and No 2 in the US and despite the track helping launch his career, Ravenscroft once said in a radio interview that hearing the song annoyed him: ‘I’m irritated because it’s out of tune. Yeah, it’s flat. By enough of a degree that it irritates me at best.
‘It was just another job. They didn’t have any expectation of it doing well.’
Ravenscroft died in hospital in Exeter on Sunday, aged 60, from a suspected heart attack.