Pete Shelley of the Buzzcocks has died. In the last several hours, news of the singer’s death from a suspected heart attack in Estonia where he was living have flooded the internet. He was 63. Best known for their hit, Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t’ve), the band’s history started in the 1970s, were regarded as a significant influence on the music scene.
No details yet on the circumstances of his death, only the outpouring support from the global punk community.
Celebrated for their catchy, yet urgent three-minute songs, the Buzzcocks are often regarded, along with the Sex Pistols and The Clash, as among the originators of punk. The last time we saw them live was during the band’s tour stop at The Observatory during their 40th anniversary in 2016. At the time, Weekly scribe Scott Feinblatt reviewed their dominating performance, remarking on the band’s vitality and connection with their fans.
“Buzzcocks may be celebrating a 40 year lifespan, but they have never compromised,” Feinblatt wrote. “Short of maybe one or two of their live albums, all of their releases have received a generally impressive reception from both fans and critics. Their cheeky songs and their darker, more reflective songs maintain timeless qualities, lyrically and sonically, and the age span of their fans is testament to this, as there were kids as well as old-timers at the show (plus older couples who brought their children for indoctrination). Furthermore, while it is all well and good to see a classic act perform some classic tunes to cater to an audience’s desire for nostalgia and a band’s desire for money, it is truly life affirming to know that a passionate crowd still heeds a band whose history is as important to punk rock as Buzzcocks’s often cynical and paradoxical lyrics are in an unchanging milieu of demagogues, half-wits, and hypocrites.”
More news on this story as it develops…