Can Vocalist Damo Suzuki Dead At 74

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Damo Suzuki, vocalist of German experimental rock band Can, has passed away. A cause of death has not been disclosed but the legendary musician had been battling colon cancer since the ‘90s; in 2014 he was given a 10% chance of survival. Suzuki was 74.

The news was revealed on Can’s label’s Instagram and confirmed to Stereogum by a band rep. Read their statement:

It is with great sadness that we have to announce the passing of our wonderful friend Damo Suzuki, yesterday, Friday 9th February 2024.

His boundless creative energy has touched so many over the whole world, not just with Can, but also with his all continent spanning Network Tour. Damo’s kind soul and cheeky smile will be forever missed.

He will be joining Michael, Jaki and Holger for a fantastic jam!

Lots of love to his family and children.

We will post funeral arrangements at a later date.

Born on January 16, 1950 in Japan, Suzuki spent his teenage years busking around Europe. Can formed in Cologne in 1968, consisting of Holger Czukay, Irmin Schmidt, Michael Karoli, and Jaki Liebezeit. Suzuki joined in 1970, replacing original vocalist Malcolm Mooney, when Czukay and Liebezeit found him busking outside a Munich café. He played with the band that night, improvising much of the performance, and appeared on their classic albums Tago Mago (1971), Ege Bamyası (1972), and Future Days (1973). Can were pioneers of krautrock, a genre that combines psychedelic rock, avant-garde composition, and electronic music, originating in West Germany in the late ’60s and early ’70s.

Suzuki left Can after the recording of Future Days to marry his girlfriend. During that time, he also became a Jehovah’s Witness. In 1983, he returned to music, touring as Damo Suzuki’s Network. His battle with cancer was documented in the 2022 documentary Energy.

Can Live In Paris 1973 is set for release on Feb. 23. It’s the first of the Can Live series to feature Suzuki on vocals.