"We have just lost a dear friend and music genius, and so has the whole world."
David Greenfield, keyboardist of UK punk outfit The Stranglers, is confirmed to have passed away at the age of 71 after contracting coronavirus.
In a statement posted to the Guildford-formed band's Facebook page today, it was announced that Greenfield passed on 3 May.
"Following a stay in hospital for heart problems, Dave tested positive for the Covid-19 virus last Sunday but he sadly lost his battle last night," the statement reads.
"Dave had been an ever present in the band since joining in late 1975 and his keyboard wizardry was world-renowned over his 45 year career in The Stranglers."
Fellow The Stranglers band members, JJ Burnel, Jet Black and Baz Warne, as well as manager Sil Willcox also paid tribute. Read the full post below.
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Though not a founding member of The Stranglers, Greenfield joined the group within a year of forming and co-wrote a number of their hit tracks including Strange Little Girl, Skin Deep, Peaches and 1982 breakout track, Golden Brown.
The Stranglers had wrapped a tour of Australia in February shortly before the COVID pandemic halted live music locally and abroad.
Tributes from those within the industry have begun to flow since the news of Greenfield's passing, including Hugh Cornwall -vocalist and guitarist for The Stranglers from 1974 through to 1990.
I am very sorry to hear of the passing of Dave Greenfield. He was the difference between The Stranglers and every other punk band. His musical skill and gentle nature gave an interesting twist to the band. (1 of 2)— Hugh Cornwell (@HughCornwell) May 4, 2020
Goodbye Dave Greenfield. Your sound has been a huge influence on our band and in my life too x x— Tim Burgess (@Tim_Burgess) May 4, 2020
My thoughts are with Dave’s family and loved ones pic.twitter.com/jnWUarA990
As i’ve said countless times over the last 30 years, without The Stranglers & Dave Greenfield, @inspiralsband wouldn’t have sounded quite the same. We’ve just lost one of the greatest. What a wonderful body of work he’s left for us xxx #RIPDaveGreenfield @StranglersSite— Clint Boon (@therealboon) May 4, 2020
While showing me round the pub he owned Dave Greenfield was in the process of hiding his menagerie of pet rats owing to the food hygiene inspectors coming to check the place over later that day.. “give me a hand Cap or the bastards will close me down”. RIP Dave. pic.twitter.com/lGDigfqXES— Captain Sensible (@CaptainSensible) May 4, 2020