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Kraftwerk Co-Founder Florian Schneider Dead at 73

The music technology pioneer Florian Schneider passed away just after his 73rd birthday, following a short battle with cancer. Together with co-founder Ralf Hütter they formed one of the most significant music acts of the past 50 years. Kraftwerk provided an important cultural touchstone during a trying and divisive period of history, bridging gaps across the world in their fan base. In a time when popular media used "German" as shorthand for "bad guy" it was difficult to embrace my own German heritage. Kraftwerk was one of the very few connections I had growing up.

They have also inspired generations of musicians. While my own music bares little resemblance to theirs, it owes everything to their technical pursuits. Florian was a big part of that. He pushed the band to explore new territory through technology, and held several patents; including their classic Robovox vocal processor.

Many modern musicians who've never heard Florian's name owe him a debt of gratitude. On their behalf:
Vielen Dank, Herr Roboter.

Reader Comments 10

Sad day. On a side note: your thanks are in Dutch, should that not be German?
May 06, 2020  | person Okeribok
Very sad indeed, Kraftwerk were a major influence!
May 06, 2020  | touch_app Zvon
Yes, that was dutch. In german it would be "Vielen Dank, Herr Roboter" (Thank you very much Mr. Robot)
I think without Kraftwerk our digital musical world wouldn't be the same
May 06, 2020  | person Cosmo
RIP Florian. My art teacher in high school was in a very early incarnation of Kraftwerk. He had some great stories. „ Heel erg bedankt, heer Robot“ is kinda fitting as Düsseldorf acts as the equivalent of 5th Avenue for Holland.
The 5X7" dash speaker nearly ejected itself when we cranked up the (mono) AM radio back in the olden days when they played "Autobahn". It was something we never heard before like it was from outer space. We were pleasantly surprised to hear something out of Germany without tubas and accordions.
May 06, 2020  | person_outline El Jeffe
Very sad news. I shall break out a calculator in his honor.
May 06, 2020  | person_outline VGA Port Authority
Very sad to hear this. RIP Florian.
@Okeribok: & @Cosmo: Thank you for the correction. I must have hit Dutch when looking for Deutsch in Google Translate!
I'm so proud that you used my translation :-)
May 07, 2020  | person Cosmo
@Tim: lol, what a banal explanation!

I was really thinking this was some hidden reference to something I didn’t know yet :-D
May 07, 2020  | person_outline Granthafen

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