Happy Mondays star Paul Ryder has suddenly died at the age of 57. The bassist’s family have said they are “deeply saddened and shocked” by the news.
Paul was found dead today just hours before his band The Happy Mondays were due to play at Kubix Festival in Sunderland.
It is not yet known how Paul died, but it is understood that his death came as a “shock” to his family.
The news about Paul, who was the original founder of The Happy Mondays alongside his brother Shaun, was shared via the group’s official Facebook page today.
The tribute read: “The Ryder family and Happy Mondays band members are deeply saddened and shocked to say that Paul Ryder passed away this morning.
“A true pioneer and legend. He will be forever missed.
“We thank you for respecting the privacy of all concerned at this time.”
The Happy Mondays had consisted of Paul, Shaun, Gary Whelan, Mark “Bez” Berry, Paul Davies and Mark Day.
Shaun has since found fame on reality television, in shows like I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!
He has also teamed up with Bez to star in many episodes of Celebrity Gogglebox on Channel 4.
During Paul’s tenure in the Happy Mondays, the band had its biggest successes.
Starting up in 1983, they released popular albums such as Pills ‘n’ Thrills and Bellyaches, which sold more than 350,000 copies in the UK alone.
As well as his music career, Paul also starred in a few films, including The Ghosts of Oxford Street and Losing It.
He also gave a critically acclaimed performance in the film about his band, 24 Hour Party People, where he played a gangster.
Tributes for Paul have started to pour in on social media, with his brother Shaun re-sharing his family’s message, before adding: “Long live his funk.”
Dave Haslam wrote: “Really very sorry to hear of the death of Paul Ryder – he made a massive contribution to Happy Mondays and was good company and a top fella RIP.”
Kevin Cummins tweeted: “Shocked to hear that Paul Ryder died this morning. Thinking of you all, Shaun. Terrible news.”
Ed penned: “I’m gutted to read about Paul Ryder. Bummed and into Hallelujah period was a game changer for me, more so than the Roses. Really feeling for the family and the rest of the band tonight.”
Jack Bates added: “I’m gutted to read about Paul Ryder.Bummed and into Hallelujah period was a game changer for me, more so than the Roses. (sic)
“Really feeling for the family and the rest of the band tonight.”
Shiiine on wrote: “Very sad news about Paul Ryder. A four string pioneer.
“Thought’s with the family and everyone involved with @Happy_Mondays. Long live the music. RIP Paul.”