Prolific Session Musician And 'Hey Hey It's Saturday' Drummer Des 'Animal' McKenna Dies

18 October 2021 | 4:18 pm | Staff Writer

"He was a saviour and huge inspiration to me"

Des 'Animal' McKenna

Des 'Animal' McKenna (image from Youtube)

Australian drummer, writer and occasional actor Des McKenna has confirmed to have passed away late last week. The musician was a prolific recording artist and session musician in Aus, as well as finding huge critical and comedic acclaim as "Animal" on the series Hey Hey, It's Saturday.

McKenna's sibling Brian shared the news online, saying, "So Sad, sorry to say that my brother  Des 'Animal' Mckenna died last night in Thailand." 

He added, "He was a saviour and huge inspiration to me, remembering all the wonderful times."

McKenna worked in the industry for decades, and played with big names in the Aus music landscape include Men At Work, Goanna, Joe Camilleri and many more.

Camilleri shared his condolences online yesterday, saying, "Des ‘Animal’ McKenna has gone ahead…we had fun playing music and listening to jazz…so with a heavy heart I will give Pharaoh Sanders Floating Points a spin and think of the times we shared."

Former Hey Hey band leader and jazz legend Wilbur Wilde also shared the news via the post below:

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