Dave Greenfield, the keyboardist for English band the Stranglers, has died at 71 from coronavirus. Greenfield contracted the disease while in the hospital for heart problems and passed away on Sunday night, per a statement on the band’s official website.
Greenfield joined the band in 1975, a year after they started, and was part of the group when they released their debut album, Rattus Norvegicus, in 1977, and would play on the many albums they released after that. He co-wrote the band’s biggest commercial hit, “Golden Brown,” which peaked at #2 on the UK singles chart in 1982.
The remaining members of the group and the band’s manager all shared statements on his passing:
“On the evening of Sunday May 3rd my great friend and longstanding colleague of 45 years, the musical genius that was Dave Greenfield, passed away as one of the victims of the Great Pandemic of 2020. All of us in the worldwide Stranglers’ family grieve and send our sincerest condolences to Pam.” – JJ Burnel
“We have just lost a dear friend and music genius, and so has the whole world. Dave was a complete natural in music. Together, we toured the globe endlessly and it was clear he was adored by millions. A huge talent, a great loss, he is dearly missed.” – Jet Black
“We lost a true innovator, musical legend, and one of my dearest friends today. The word genius is bandied around far too easily in this day and age, but Dave Greenfield certainly was one. We stood together on the same side of the stage for 20 years, laughed, joked and shared our lives in the way that only band mates can. I’ll miss him forever. Our thoughts and hearts are with his wife Pam, and to the millions of fans who worshipped at his altar, he’ll never be equalled.” – Baz Warne
“We are all in shock, Dave was a kind, generous soul who had time for anyone and everyone and it has been my privilege to have known him as both a close friend, his tech and manager for over 40 years. Our thoughts are with Pam at this sad time” – Sil Willcox
The Stranglers’ 1986 single “Always The Sun” was on our list of essential ’80s songs about nuclear anxiety.