Andy Barker of 808 State dies, aged 53

Andy Barker, 808 State’s longtime bassist and keyboard player has died, aged 53. His passing was confirmed in a message posted yesterday (7th November) to 808 State’s social media accounts.

“It’s with a heavy heart I have to deliver the tragic news of the passing of Andy Barker — here is a statement from his immediate family,” the statement read. “’After a happy life Andrew Barker experienced a short period of illness and passed away in his hometown of Manchester yesterday, Saturday 6th November. His family and friends asks that people respect their privacy at this time but remember him for the joy he brought through his personality and music. You’ll be sadly missed.’”

Influential electronic group 808 State formed in Manchester in 1987 in the heyday of the Haçienda and the city’s buzzing acid house scene, with the group taking their name from the Roland TR-808 drum machine. The group’s founding members —  Graham Massey, Martin Price and Gerald Simpson — released their debut album as 808 State in 1988, before Simpson’s departure saw Andy Barker join the group as bassist and keyboard player.

808 State have achieved chart success with iconic singles such as ‘Pacific State’ and ‘In Yer Face’, and in 2019, the group — then a duo between Andy Barker and Graham Massey — released their first studio album in 17 years, ‘Transmission Suite’.

Find some of the tributes that have been shared about Barker below.

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