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The Pop Group's John Waddington Has Died
Christian Eede , June 21st, 2023 17:00

The guitarist was pivotal to the sound of the band's early albums

John Waddington, co-founding guitarist of key post-punk band The Pop Group, has died, aged 63.

News of his passing was confirmed today (June 21) via a social media post shared by The Pop Group, which gave no cause of death. "An influential musician, and an integral member of the group, John contributed to some of the band’s most iconic recordings," The Pop Group's statement read. "His energy and friendship will be sorely missed, and his unforgettable musicianship will always be remembered."

The Pop Group formed in Bristol in 1977, releasing their classic debut album, Y, the same year. Helmed by Mark Stewart, the band's forthright political sound built on the popular punk music of the era via dadaist lyrics and experimental productions as they folded in elements of funk and dub with the help of Dennis Bovell as producer.

In 1980, Waddington played on the band's Rough Trade-released second album, For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder? Amid internal disagreements and various legal disputes, the band split in 1981, with Waddington moving on to play on Maximum Joy's Adrian Sherwood-produced debut album, Station MXJY, later that same year.

Though The Pop Group reunited in 2010 and set about performing sporadically in the years that followed, Waddington did not rejoin the group. Fellow group co-founder Mark Stewart died in April of this year.