(CelebrityAccess) — Florian Schneider, co-founder of the German pioneering electronic music group Kraftwerk, has died. He was 73.
A statement provided to CelebrityAccess by his publicist Alexandra Greenberg said: “Kraftwerk Co-Founder and electro pioneer Ralf Hütter has sent us 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.”
Schneider co-founded the group with Ralf Hütter in Dusseldorf in 1970, and remained a member of the ensemble until sometime between 2006 when he performed his last live show with the group and 2008 when an associate of the group told the Guardian that he had not participated in the band in some time.
Prior to meeting Hütter, Schneider performed with the avant-garde groups Pissoff and Organization on both the violin and flute. Finding the flute limiting, Schneider began experimenting with adding electronic effects to both instruments such as pitch and ring modulation, and spectral glide, prefiguring the electronic approach to music that would later become a hallmark of Kraftwerk.
As a group, Kraftwerk helped to revolutionize modern music, introducing elements such as synthesizers and vocoders to a wider audience and scoring early hits with including “Autobahn”, in 1974 and “Trans-Europe Express”, in 1977.
They scored their first #1 in the UK with the double A-side single The Model/Computer Love in 1982.
In 2014, Kraftwerk was recognized with a lifetime achievement Grammy award and the group has been nominated for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Following news of Schneider’s passing, social media tributes from his colleagues and admirers came pouring in.
We are absolutely devastated to learn that one of our heroes Florian Schneider has passed away. pic.twitter.com/Y2dnYfxkj8
— Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (@OfficialOMD) May 6, 2020
— Jean-Michel Jarre (@jeanmicheljarre) May 6, 2020
Kraftwerk, performing live in 2005.