Paul Johnson, the influential US house producer best known for his hit ‘Get Get Down’, has died from coronavirus at the age of 50.
A statement on his Facebook page said: “Our greatness passed away this morning at 9am the house music legend we all know as PJ aka Paul Johnson.”
Johnson was initially hospitalised and placed in intensive care after contracting the virus last month.
The Chicago-based DJ scored his biggest hit in 1999 when ‘Get Get Down’ reached No 5 in the UK charts and established itself as a dancefloor staple.
Paying tribute, Chicago producer RP Boo said: “Today we have lost a great legend of our world house community. Thank you God for his work that you installed in him.”
DJ Mike Servito said: “Paul Johnson taught us how to bounce to the beat. A groove like no other, honestly. This is so depressing. But the records, the music will remain timeless and uplifting. We will always have that Chicago groove.”
Defected Records added: “Paul Johnson… Rest in peace, thank you for the music.”
Paul Johnson… Rest in peace, thank you for the music. 💛
Get, get down forever. pic.twitter.com/ZgoTWvdSMz
— Defected Records (@DefectedRecords) August 4, 2021
Johnson started his career as a breakdancer and became a fan of house music in the 1980s after listening to influential Chicago figures such as Ron Hardy.
He was shot in 1987, seriously injuring his leg and forcing him to use a wheelchair for the rest of life.
His injured leg was subsequently amputated in 2003, and a car accident in later years resulted in the amputation of his other leg in 2010.
Condolences to the family and friends of Kelli Hand & Paul Johnson. We lost true Detroit and Chicago pioneers, essentials in the foundation of House and Techno. Rest In Power. pic.twitter.com/a374HODdEA
— Mike Servito (@mikeservito) August 4, 2021
Today We Have Lost An Great Legend Of Our World House Community• Thank You God For His Work That You Installed In Him• Mr. Paul Johnson. 🎶🎧😭 pic.twitter.com/nd8Pn8b3VO
— RP BOO Rolling Stone (@RP_BOO_) August 4, 2021
He became a major figure in the scene’s continued popularity in the 1990s, and went on to release a wide array of albums 12-inches and EP over his career.
Daft Punk also hailed Johnson as an influence on 1997’s ‘Teachers’, a track which sees the Parisian duo listing the names of their heroes.