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808 State’s Andrew Barker has died

"You’ll be sadly missed"

By Tom Skinner

808 State's Andrew Barker (centre) has passed away following a short illness

808 State’s Andrew Barker has died, it has been confirmed.

The Manchester electronic group shared the news on social media yesterday (November 7), writing: “Its with a heavy heart to inform you of the passing of Andrew Barker.

“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.”

In a separate message on Instagram, 808 State said Barker had passed away in Manchester on Saturday (November 6) following “a short period of illness”.

Barker was one half of 808 State alongside Graham Massey, with the band having been formed in 1988 by Massey, Martin Price and Gerald Simpson. Barker and Darren Partington joined the line-up in 1989 following the departure of Simpson.

The group’s latest album, ‘Transmission Suite’, came out in 2019. It marked their first full-length in 17 years following 2002’s LP ‘Outpost Transmission’. A string of EPs were released in the interim, including 2012’s ‘O.T.E.P.’.

Throughout their career, 808 State have collaborated with artists such as Björk, James Dean Bradfield, Bernard Sumner and Guy Garvey.

Tributes have poured in from the likes of The Blessed Madonna, Rob Da Bank, Happy Mondays singer Rowetta and author/DJ Dave Haslam.

“Terribly sad to hear about Andy Barker from 808 State… a true musical warrior .. had the privilege of booking them for Bestival in 2008 and Camp Bestival 2015 … spine tingling both times RIP,” wrote Da Bank.

The Blessed Madonna hailed Barker’s “enormous influence”, adding: “Safe travels, pilgrim. 808 ST8 4Evr.”

Rowetta, meanwhile, said that the news was “heartbreaking”. “Love you & will miss you Andy Barker,” she continued.

Later, the singer posted an image of herself backstage with Barker. “I’ll miss the man, the music, everything,” she tweeted.

Rowetta then shared another tribute at 8:08am this morning (November 8). She uploaded a photo from the last time she saw Barker and reflected on “some beautiful memories”.

Haslam wrote: “So sad to hear this about Andy Barker of 808 State. I first met him 35 years ago. He was a bringer of joy, a totally delightful fella.”