Mr. Jansch had a notable solo career that spanned five decades and nearly two dozen albums, drawing admirers on both sides of the Atlantic for the flawless technique and harmonic color he brought to the guitar.
Rolling Stone magazine named him as one of the top 100 guitarists of all time, and he opened for Young on concert tours in recent years. Young once called Mr. Jansch his favorite acoustic guitarist and “as much of a great guitar player as Jimi Hendrix was.”
Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page was also among his staunchest followers, with Zeppelin’s instrumental “Black Mountain Side” featuring a similar guitar pattern as Mr. Jansch’s 1966 version of the folk song “Blackwaterside.”
Mr. Jansch was still in his teens when he emerged in the Edinburgh folk-club circuit as a guitar prodigy. He cemented his early promise with his 1965 self-titled album, which included a dazzling cover of Davey Graham’s “Anji” and the haunting and raging “Needle of Death,” which Mr. Jansch wrote for a friend who died of a heroin overdose.
Later, Young told Guitar Player magazine that his own song “Ambulance Blues” was “almost like a note-for-note cop” of Mr. Jansch’s “Needle of Death.”
The topicality of Mr. Jansch’s music, his virtuosic guitar work and his brooding good looks brought him acclaim as Britain’s answer to Bob Dylan.
While never fulfilling that degree of public renown, Mr. Jansch enjoyed a successful solo career before forming Pentangle in 1967 with his then-roommate, guitarist John Renbourn. The two had previously recorded the well-received albums “Jack Orion” and “Bert and John.”
As Pentangle, they were joined by other young musicians — drummer Terry Cox, singer Jacqui McShee and double bassist Danny Thompson — who had coalesced around Les Cousins, a nightclub in London’s Soho district.
Pentangle was heralded in live performances and several albums (including the best-selling “Basket of Light”) for music that incorporated ideas from modern jazz and American country blues into English and Celtic folk music. Mr. Jansch called it a “progressive jazz folk band.”
To its most devoted fans, the style was compelling, intricate and introspective. Occasional detractors considered the music predictably solemn and interchangeable.
Pentangle’s exhausting tour schedule, heavy boozing and financial disputes with its music production company led to the group’s collapse in 1973. Mr. Jansch owned a sheep farm in Wales and formed various short-lived bands. His final album was “The Black Swan” (2006), which featured singers Beth Orton and Devendra Banhart.