Cassius’ Philippe Zdar Dies In Tragic Accident

The French producer Philippe Zdar, one half of the house duo Cassius and an extremely important producer for a number of huge artists, has died. The BBC reports that Zdar fell from the window of a building in Paris. Paris police are investigating the accident. Zdar was 52.

Zdar, born Philippe Cerboneschi, and his fellow producer Hubert Blanc-Francard (otherwise known as Boom Bass) first started working together in 1988, producing tracks for the French rapper MC Solaar. They later started producing dance music, starting the project La Funk Mob. (Zdar was also half of a dance duo called Motorbass, who released one album in 1996.) Zdar and Boom Bass released “Foxxy,” their first single as Cassius, in 1996. Their 1999 single “Cassius 1999″ was a crossover top-10 hit in the UK. That same year, they released 1999, their first Cassius album. They were one of the bigger groups involved in the French Touch wave of French dance music. Cassius released five albums, the latest of which, Dreems, is scheduled for release tomorrow. He was booked to DJ at New York’s Central Park SummerStage this weekend.

Zdar was also an in-demand producer, working with artists like the Beastie Boys, Cut Copy, Cat Power, Chromeo, the Rapture, and Franz Ferdinand. He was most closely associated with Phoenix, co-producing their 2000 debut album United and working regularly with the group in the years that followed, including on their 2009 breakout album and Best Alternative Album Grammy winner Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. Zdar also owned the Motorbass studio in Paris, where artists like Kanye West and Pharrell Williams recorded.

Below, watch some videos from Cassius.