PARIS — Johnny Hallyday, the French rocker icon who packed sports stadiums and was the country’s top rock star for decades, has died at 74.
French President Emmanuel Macron’s office announced his death in a statement early Wednesday, saying “he brought a part of America into our national pantheon.”
Macron’s office said the president spoke with Hallyday’s family after the news. Hallyday had long suffered from lung cancer and had repeated health scares recently.
Hallyday’s glitzy stage aura was clearly fashioned around stars like Elvis Presley and his musical inspiration came from the likes of Chuck Berry and Buddy Holly. Yet his stardom largely ended at the French-speaking world.
Macron said “we all have something of Johnny Hallyday in us.” Celine Dion was among stars sharing condolences at the news.
Story: Elaine Ganley, Angela Charlton