Japan's Mick Karn Dies at 52

> Jan 04 2011

Japan's Mick Karn Dies at 52
By Josiah HughesMulti-instrumentalist and former Japan bassist Mick Karn has died at the age of 52. As previously reported, the art rock icon was diagnosed with terminal cancer in June 2010. He passed away earlier today (January 4).

An official statement posted on Karn's website reads:

It's with profound sadness that we have to inform you that Mick finally lost his battle with cancer and passed away peacefully at 4:30 PM today, 4th January 2011, at home in Chelsea, London. He was surrounded by his family and friends and will be deeply missed by all.

In addition to his work with Japan, Karn formed the group Dali's Car, with Bauhaus's Peter Murphy, and worked as a studio musician with Gary Numan, Kate Bush and Joan Armatrading, among many others. His storied solo career included 16 releases since 1982, most recently 2009's The Concrete Twin.

Karn was a self-taught musician who many regarded as the pioneer of the fretless bass in modern pop music. He didn't read music and developed a distinct sound over the years. He also played the wind instruments on Japan's albums. In addition to his musical work, he worked as a sculptor and photographer.

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Mick inspired me to take up bass - a true musical original.. My deepest condolences to all his family

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