The Pop Group guitarist John Waddington dies aged 63

"His energy and friendship will be sorely missed," the band wrote in tribute

The Pop Group guitarist John Waddington has died aged 63, the band have announced.

Taking to their official Twitter account, the band revealed that Waddington died on Tuesday (June 20), with no cause of death yet revealed.

They wrote: “John Waddington – former guitarist and founding member of The Pop Group – has passed away. An influential musician, and an integral member of the group, John contributed to some of the band’s most iconic recordings.

“John played on ‘Y’ and ‘For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder?’, the first two albums by The Pop Group, and later joined Maximum Joy for their debut album ‘Station MXJY’.”

The statement added: “John continued to make memorable appearances on records by Judy Nylon and by On-U Sound affiliated projects including New Age Steppers and African Head Charge.

“His energy and friendship will be sorely missed, and his unforgettable musicianship will always be remembered.”

Waddington founded The Pop Group in Bristol in 1977 alongside the late Mark Stewart,  with Gareth Sager, Simon Underwood and Bruce Smith. The politically oriented band blended post-punk with dub and reggae and released two albums, 1979’s ‘Y’ and 1980’s ‘For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder?’. The group disbanded in 1980 with a final performance at rally for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).

Back in April, the band’s frontman Stewart passed away aged 62. The band wrote at the time: “Mark is in Communion with Love. As Sufis say; there is no such thing as death, no one is going to die, but since death is so valuable, it has been hidden in the safe of fears.”

In tribute to Stewart, Nick Cave called him “a fearsome vocalist and unbelievably exciting frontman to whom I am deeply indebted.”

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