Mark E. Smith, The Fall founder and frontman, died at his home on Wednesday, Jan. 24, his partner and the band's manager Pam Vander recently announced.
Vander, also known as Pam Van Damned, confirmed the lead singer's death through the band's record label Cherry Red. The British musician died at the age of 60 from still-unknown causes. Vander said details about his death are to follow.
"The day I've been dreading. It is with deep regret that we announce the passing of Mark E. Smith. He passed this morning at home. A more detailed statement will follow in the next few days. In the meantime, Pam & Mark's family request privacy at this sad time," reads Vader's message on Twitter.
Smith was not in good shape in the months prior to his death. He had been in and out of the hospital because of issues concerning his respiratory system, throat, and mouth. His deteriorating health prompted The Fall to cancel shows in Kentucky, New York, and Louisville in August last year. It would have been their first U.S. shows in ten years.
The band had to cancel more show dates in late December because of the frontman's "full year of bad health." Vader said at that time that it would have been a gamble on Smith's health if the band had to fly anywhere.
However, 2017 had some great memories for Smith. The Fall was able to perform in July at London's 100 Club, and despite his health condition, Smith sang for fans from a wheelchair in Wakefield in October. The band also released their 32nd studio album, New Facts Emerge.
Marc Riley, a former member of The Fall who now works as a radio DJ for BBC 6, paid tribute to the singer. Although he and Smith had a tumultuous relationship during their band days, Riley thanked his former bandmate for the lessons he gave about music and life.
"Aged 16 he really did teach me so much. The Fall were my favorite band when I joined and they were still my favorite band when I got kicked out," Riley told listeners. He was on air at the time when news about Smith's death broke.
Brix Smith-Start, Smith's wife from 1983 to 1989 and a former member of The Fall, said that she was "just taking the news in." She also thanked those who paid tribute to the late singer.
Simon Wolstencroft, the band's drummer for 11 years, called Smith "iconic" and recalled how he influenced many bands including Cabbage and Pulp. He also remembered the singer as a "very intelligent" and "funny guy."