THE former lead singer of the Scottish rock band Runrig, Bruce Guthro, has died at the age of 62, one of this former bandmates has announced.

Guthro, from Nova Scotia, Canada, announced two months ago that he was battling a serious illness.

He performed as a solo artist and was a member of the band that blended rock and Gaelic music from 1998 until members retired the group in 2018.

Former bandmate Pete Wishart, now the MP for Perth and North Perthshire, announced the news on Twitter/X on Wednesday, calling Guthro “the nicest person you could ever hope to meet and a joy to perform with”.

READ MORE: Hoolie in the Hydro line-up revealed as event celebrates Runrig

He wrote: “So, so sad to hear of the untimely death of my friend and former band mate Bruce Guthro. He was just the nicest person you could ever hope to meet and a joy to perform with.

“An exceptional singer, musician and song writer taken far too soon. We are going to miss him. RIP.”

Runrig released a statement later, saying Guthro had "finally lost a long battle with cancer".

The band said: "It is with the heaviest of hearts and with profound sadness that we inform you of the news that Bruce passed away last night, having finally lost a long battle with cancer that has stretched back many years. 

"Everyone associated with Runrig is heartbroken at the loss of a dear friend and such a special musical colleague. 

"Our immediate thoughts and prayers at this time are with Kim, Dylan and Jodie."

Fans replied with tributes to the singer, sharing memories of live performances they attended starring Guthro.

Scottish Green MSP Mark Ruskell said: “For many, Runrig and Bruce Guthro were about more than music.

“His voice was a clarion call for Scots everywhere to think of home, the Gaelic culture, and the spirit that makes us so fiercely passionate about who we are. 

“He may have been born in Cape Breton Island in Canada, but his legend was forged in the hearts of tens of thousands of music fans across the world. Our thoughts are with his family, his friends and all those who will miss his extraordinary talent.”

Guthro replaced the group’s original lead singer Donnie Munro when he departed the band to pursue a career in politics.

Hoolie in the Hydro, a night of traditional music, is set to return to Glasgow on December 9 with the event doubling as a celebration of 50 years of Runrig.