Music News

Happy Mondays bassist Paul Ryder dead at 58

Roberto Ricciuti/Redferns

Happy Mondays bassist Paul Ryder has died at age 58.

The English band, perhaps best known in the U.S. for the singles “Kinky Afro” and “Step On,” announced the news in a tweet Friday: “The Ryder family and Happy Mondays band members are deeply saddened and shocked to say that Paul Ryder passed away this morning.”

“A true pioneer and legend. He will be forever missed,” the post continues. “We thank you for respecting the privacy of all concerned at this time. Long live his funk.”

Happy Mondays formed in 1980 and were staples of the so-called Madchester scene, which combined elements of indie rock and dance music. Following a breakup in 1993, the group reunited in 1999 and then again in 2004. Not unlike another English group of the era, Happy Mondays was plagued by familial issues between Paul and his brother, vocalist Shaun Ryder, which led to Paul not taking part in the 2004 reunion.

Eventually, Paul rejoined Happy Mondays in 2012, and the band has continued to tour over the last 10 years. They were scheduled to perform Friday at England’s Kubix Festival, but their set was canceled due to Paul’s passing.

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