The Pop Group’s Mark Stewart Sadly Passed Away at 62
The Pop Group’s former frontman Mark Stewart passed away at the age of 62. Stewart’s death was announced by his label Mute on Friday (April 21, 2023).
Mute Records released a statement to confirm the heartbreaking news. “Mark Stewart passed away in the early hours of Friday, 21 April 2023,” the statement read.
Stewart had a “hugely confident and dominating presence” that was coupled with a “warm and sensitive nature”.
“Knowing Mark, working with him, laughing with him and thinking with him was like nothing else.
“His hugely confident and dominating presence was coupled with a sensitive, warm, creative, curious, intelligent and hilarious nature – traits that were often hidden upon first meeting this towering tour de force,” the statement from Mute added.
“He was always, vocally, on the side of the oppressed, and did all he could to ensure people were treated correctly.”
Inspired by punk, dub and reggae, The Pop Group released their debut album, Y, in 1979.
Mark who founded The Pop Group in 1977 as a teen in Bristol with John Waddington, Gareth Sager, Bruce Smith, and Simon Underwood was described as a “dear friend, fellow agitator and creative force of nature”.
Their group disbanded the following year after one more album, the provocatively named For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder?, after a final performance at a Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament rally in Trafalgar Square in 1980.
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Pioneer of post-punk and industrial hip-hop Mark Stewart passed away on April 21, 2023. His cause of death has not been announced yet.
Stewart started to work with early hip-hop musicians such as The Last Poets and members of Sugar Hill Records.
He frequently collaborated with other artists, such as the trip-hop group Massive Attack’s Daddy G and Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream.
In 2010, The Pop Group reunited for a series of live performances and recorded two studio albums.
Mark’s last performance with the band was in the ruins of Coventry Cathedral, for Coventry UK City of Culture 2021.
Tributes have been paid by Daniel Miller, producer Adrian Sherwood, and his former bandmate Sager.
Miller wrote: “His musical influence has been much greater than is often acknowledged… I can’t imagine you being anything other than restless but I hope you find your very special peace.”
Adrian Sherwood, with whom Mark collaborated on the 1983 album, Learning To Cope With Cowardice, described Mark as “the biggest musical influence on my life”.
“Mark was the most amazing mind of my generation, RIP. Thank you my brother. You were the biggest musical influence in my life and our extended family will miss you so so much. Love forever,” Sager wrote.
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