Canadian guitarist Kevin Scott Macmichael was already in his mid-thirties when his big moment came. The group he had formed in England with vocalist Nick Van Eede, Cutting Crew, had a pan-Atlantic hit with I Just Died In Your Arms, spending two weeks at number one in the US Billboard charts and making top five in the UK. The hit propelled the band's 1986 debut album, Broadcast, to sales of three million.

Macmichael, a native of Halifax, Nova Scotia, had spent 15 years playing with groups on the eastern seaboard of Canada before the UK adventure that was to make his reputation. He and Nick Van Eede had met on a tour in Canada, but plans to work together had foundered in typical music industry tale of corrupt management and collapsing record labels. It was only when Macmichael was persuaded to move to England that the songwriting partnership was signed to trendy Virgin records offshoot, Siren.

Cutting Crew's second album, The Scattering, was partly produced by Scots keyboard player Peter Vitesse, who has also worked with such diverse artists as Liza Minnelli, Prefab Sprout, and Geri Halliwell. The title track was one of Macmichael's key compositions, a song about the transplanted Scots and Gaels who found a home in Nova Scotia, and included a crucial contribution from Scots traditional group The Whistlebinkies. Vitesse also played with the live band throughout its history.

After the demise of the group - which never repeated its early success - at the start of the 1990s, Macmichael went on to close collaboration with former Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant. Featured guitarist and co-writer on Plant's Fate of Nations album (1993), held by fans to be the singer's most personal and reflective, he was also musical director of Plant's touring band.

Macmichael returned to Canada in the mid 1990s on the death of his mother, Lila, with whom he was close, and continued his career as an elder statesman of the east coast scene, writing and producing across the rock and traditional music genres. He was responsible for pushing the names of both Ashley MacIsaac and, particularly, The Rankin Family, to the top of the Celtic Connections agenda. The quintessential collaborator, in 2001 he went on tour with a band put together by so-called ''sixth Beatle'', the band's original drummer, Pete Best.

Macmichael fought a long battle with cancer, but continued to write and produce music from his home. His last appeared on stage at a special Cutting Crew reunion concert in Halifax, organised by Nick Van Eede.

Kevin Scott Macmichael, musician; born November 7, 1951, died December 31, 2002.