SYDNEY, Dec 16 (RTRS) - Ian Meldrum, Australia's top music journalist and a friend of singer Elton John is in critical condition after falling from a ladder while hanging Christmas decorations, doctors said on Friday.
Meldrum, who was given the nickname "Molly" early in his career by a DJ who had the habit of dishing out female names, fell at his Melbourne home and struck his head on some tiles on Sunday. His gardener found him unconscious and not breathing.
His injuries include a fractured skull and punctured lung as well as a number of broken ribs.
"This is a life and death matter," said Jeffrey Rosenfeld, a neurosurgeon and professor told journalists outside Melbourne's The Alfred hospital.
Sometimes called the single most important person in the Australian pop music industry, Meldrum's career of more than four decades has seen him interview most music celebrities passing through Australia, as well as luminaries such as Britain's Prince Charles.
He most recently interviewed Beyonce and was a personal friend of Kylie Minogue, who joined a flood of well-wishers on social media sites to send a message of concern.
"Sending lots of love to Molly Meldrum, I love you," she tweeted.
(Reporting by Pauline Askin; editing by Elaine Lies and Paul Casciato)