Wayne Kramer, a founding member of the iconic punk band MC5, has died at the age of 75.
The singer-songwriter and political activist’s death was announced on Friday, February 2, via his official social media accounts.
Kramer died at Cedars-Sinai hospital in Los Angeles from pancreatic cancer.
“Wayne S. Kramer. ‘PEACE BE WITH YOU’ April 30, 1948 – February 2, 202,” reads a post on his Instagram page.
Kramer came to prominence as a teenager in 1967 as a co-founder of the Detroit rock group MC5, a group known for their powerful live performances and radical left-wing political stand.
Kramer started the band with fellow guitarist Fred “Sonic” Smith. After a couple years, the classic lineup of Kramer, Smith, singer Rob Tyner, bassist Michael Davis, and drummer Dennis Thompson was in place.
Rolling Stone ranked him among the “100 Greatest Guitarists of all Time”.
Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, who cited Kramer as a major influence, wrote, “His band the MC5 basically invented punk rock music… Wayne came through personal trials of fire with drugs and jail time and emerged a transformed soul who went on to save countless lives through his tireless acts of service.”
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