One of the founding members of the electronic music group Kraftwerk of German Florian Schneider has died at 73.
In a statement, Kraftwerk co-founder Ralf Hütter confirms “the very sad news that his friend and companion over many decades Florian Schneider has passed away from a short cancer disease just a few days after his 73rd birthday.”
Hütter told in 2009 that Schneider “worked for many, many years on other projects: speech synthesis, and things like that. He was not greatly involved in Kraftwerk for many, many years,” and in 2017 said that the pair had “not really” spoken since Schneider left.
In 2015, Schneider released a new piece of music, Stop Plastic Pollution, in collaboration with producer Dan Lacksman. He said the track, released to raise awareness about pollution, was inspired by “taking a swim in the ocean at the coasts of Ghana, watching fishermen catch nothing but plastic garbage in their nets.”
Before Florian’s death, Kraftwerk had announced that the band would be embarking on a 50th-anniversary tour of North America, but the shows canceled due to the global coronavirus pandemic.
Producer Robert Goerl first broke the news of Florian’s death on Facebook, writing in German: “Oh no, Florian Schneider, have a good trip.” Mark Reeder, who owned German electronic dance music labels MFS and Flesh, followed, writing: “Good-bye Florian, you made an indelible impact upon my life, may the neon lights shine bright for you.” After news of his death, fans took to Twitter to pay tribute.