Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering and highly influential German electronic music group Kraftwerk, has died. He was 73 years old.
His death was confirmed by his former bandmate, Ralf Hütter, in a statement issued Wednesday. Hütter said that Schneider died "from a short cancer disease just a few days after his seventy-third birthday." No other details were provided.
Schneider was the son of the well-known German modernist architect Paul Schneider-Esleben. He began playing with Hütter, Kraftwerk's other founder, in 1968 when both were students at the Robert Schumann Conservatory. Originally, they teamed up as the group Organisation; under that name, they released an album, Tone Float, in 1969.
The following year, they reshaped their musical vision into Kraftwerk ("power station" in German), and opened a studio, Kling Klang, in their home city of Dusseldorf. That was also when the band released its first, eponymously titled album.
Schneider sang and played a variety of instruments, including synthesizer, electric flute, electric guitar and violin. Hütter sang and played keyboards.