Unfortunately, rock n' roll legend and pioneer Chuck Berry passed away earlier today at the age of 90. No cause of death has been announced as of yet. He was known for such rock classics as "Johnny B. Goode," "Roll Over Beethoven," "Rock and Roll Music," "Maybellene" and many more as well as influencing countless bands. Berry is supposed to have an album coming out this year called Chuck.
Punknews sends its condolences to Chuck Berry's family and friends.Read more
According to a post from the Fat Wreck Chords Facebook page, Bad Astronaut drummer Erik Herzog has passed away. The band, which also featured Joey Cape, released three albums and one split with Armchair Martian. Fat Wreck Chords stated, "We are very sad to report the passing of Bad Astronautâ€™s drummer, Erik Herzog, an exceptionally talented musician and lifelong member of the Santa Barbara music scene. Our deepest condolences to Erikâ€™s family and to our friends in Bad Astronaut: Joey, Marko, Todd, Angus, and Thom. " Punknews sends its condolences to Erik's family and friends. Photo by Gwendolyn Lee
You can read the label's full post here.Read more
Micky Fitz the lead vocalist of The Business has passed away. He had been diagnosed with cancer in 2015. No official announcement from the band has been made as of yet.
The Business were one of the UK's first Oi bands. After a string of early singles, including the hit "Smash the Discos," the band released their debut album Suburban Rebels in 1983. The band's original run lasted until 1988. They reformed in '92 and have been a unit since then. They were influential on many punk rockers, including Lars Frederiksen, Andy Lefton, Dropkick Murphys, and many more. Punknews sends its condolences to Micky's family and friends.Read more
Sometime yesterday or the day before, singer song writer Leonard Cohen passed away, at age 82. Cohen's family made the announcement last night via Cohen's facebook. His family stated that there will be a private service. Cohen released his latest album, You Want It Darker last month. You can see the statement below.Read more
Jamaican ska/rocksteady/reggae star Prince Buster has passed away. Buster, birth name Cecil Bustamente Campbell, was from Kingston, JA. Buster was an important part of the early ska scene. Likewise, his contributions were a large influence on the British two tone scene. Prince Buster was 78. Hear some of his hits below.Read more
Alan Vega, vocalist for the influential protopunk act Suicide, died this past Saturday. He was 78. The news was first reported by Henry Rollins on his website along with a statement from Vega's family. It reads, in part: "One of the greatest aspects of Alan Vega was his unflinching adherence to the demands of his art… After decades of constant output, the world seemed to catch up with Alan and he was acknowledged as the groundbreaking creative individual he had been from the very start." The full statement can be found below.Read more
We have some terrible news to report. Erik Petersen of Mischief Brew passed away recently.
Mischief Brew was preparing for a European tour and had released This is Not for Children in 2015 via Alternative Tentacles.
Petersen became interested in punk rock as a teenager. After playing in high school bands, he formed The Orphans, his first band to release an official studio recording. The Orphans made a name for themselves in the local Philadelphia and West Chester scenes with their Germs meets skate punk style.
After the Orphans broke up, Petersen formed the short lived Kettle Rebellion, which would be a precursor to Mischief Brew. The band played a few shows before folding, but not before recording an album that would eventually be released in 2014 as Kettle Rebellion .
Petersen then began recording as an acoustic, solo artist. This project would eventually use the name Mischief Brew.
Mischief Brew's first incarnation was fairly unique for the time, blending anarcho punk with folk and medieval imagery. Eventually, the project would become a band and record acoustic and electric tracks. The band's first album was Smash the Windows , which was an almost fifty-fifty mix of anarcho punk and folk music. Then, in 2011, the band released The Stone Operation. , which was a substantial evolution for the band, finding them delving deeper into anarcho punk, using Crass and Rudimentary Peni as reference points. Their third and final full length, This is Not for Children , was released on Alternative Tentacles and again found the band evolving. This release bore the traces of the post-Crass record scene, with the clean propulsive style of bands like New Model Army.
The final incarnation of the band included Shawn St. Clair, Petersen's brother Chris Petersen, as well as the occasional appearance from early member Chris "Doc" Kulp. The group also released several archival releases which documented the band between their albums, including Songs from Under the Sink and Bacchanal â€˜Nâ€™ Philadelphia .
Petersen is survived by his wife Denise as well as their treasured pugs, which adorned many Mischief Brew items. The band's final show was on July 8, with Culture Shock and World/Inferno Friendship Society. You can read a statement from editor John Gentile below.Read more
Brandon Ferrell, member of Government Warning, Municipal Waste, Career Suicide, and more, has passed away. His cause of death is not yet known. In addition to being involved in many other hardcore bands, Ferrell ran No Way Records. He also opened and was the original owner of Vinyl Conflict records in Richmond. He is survived by a wife and two children.Read more
John Berry, an original member of the Beastie Boys has passed away at the age of 52. Berry passed away early Thursday morning in a hospital in Danvers, Massachusetts. According to Berry's father, Berry suffered from frontal lobe dementia which had recently worsened.
Berry was in the group's original incarnation when they were a hardcore punk band, along with Mike Diamond, Adam Yauch, and Kate Schellenbach. Berry was on the seminal Pollywog Stew. After leaving the Beastie Boys, he was in groups including Even Worse, Big Fat Love, Highway Stars and Bourbon Deluxe. Hear Pollywog Stew below.Read more
Unfortunately, guitarist and singer Marlene Marder has passed away. Marder was a long running member of Liliput, who were initially known as Kleenex. The cause of death is not yet known. Marder was 62. If more details become available, we will let you know. Hear some of Marder's recordings below.Read more
Unfortunately, John Stabb, the lead vocalist of Government Issue, passed away on May 7, 2016 of stomach cancer at the age of 54. Stabb was a key part of the early D.C. hardcore scene, first as part of the Stabs and then releasing the Legless Bull EP via Dischord in 1981.
The band then released the Boycott Stabb album in 1983. The band broke up in 1989. Unfortunately, in 2007, Stabb was badly assaulted by five men and required facial reconstruction. The band reformed as Government Re-Issue for a show in 2007 to help pay for Stabb's medical costs. The band also performed in 2014 with many original members.
The Punknews staff sends its condolences to John Stabb's family and friends. You can see the band's statement below.Read more
Unfortunately, Vi Subversa of Poison Girls passed away yesterday after a short illness. She was 80.
Poison Girls formed in 1976 with Vi Subversa as their frontwoman and guitarist. Perhaps somewhat unusually for the the time, when the band formed, Vi was already a mother and in her 40s. Poison Girls were unique in the early English punk scene. They were one of the first bands to introduce an avant-garde style of music to the scene and also focused heavily on gender issues. Soon after forming, the band developed a relationship with Crass and toured with that band for over 100 gigs.
The band released three main albums and numerous singles. Both their album Chappaquiddick Bridge and their split-single with Crass, "Persons Unknown," are considered landmark releases. See a statement by Subversa's son, Pete Fender below, and hear some of the band's songs.Read more
The Punknews staff sends its condolences to Smith's friends and family.Read more
Further Seems Forever stated:
"We are in total shock, today we found out that Jon Bunch departed this world. Jon was an inspiration to us in so many ways. He had the uncanny ability to light up a room when he stepped into it. He left a huge imprint in the music scene from "Reason to Believeâ€ to â€œSense Field", and we were lucky enough to make a beautiful record with him. It is a legacy of hope and one that will never fade. We truly lost a special person."
You can find other statements from his friends and family here.Read more