The Beat singer Ranking Roger dies, aged 56
Ranking Roger, singer with Birmingham-based ska band The Beat, has died at the age of 56. The vocalist had been suffering from ill health for several months, having survived a stroke in summer last year, and had reportedly been diagnosed with two brain tumours and lung cancer over recent months. According to a statement on the band's website, Roger died peacefully at home on Tuesday surrounded by his family.
Born Roger Charlery in Birmingham in 1963, Roger was a key figure in the ska revivalist 'two-tone' movement that sprang out of the Midlands in the late 1970s and included bands such as The Specials and The Selecter. Known for hits including 'Mirror in the Bathroom' and the anti-Thatcher anthem 'Stand Down Margaret', The Beat were one of the scene's most successful outfits, while Roger himself also collaborated on tracks with the likes of The Clash, Sting, The Ordinary Boys and Big Audio Dynamite.
Since the news of his death emerged late on Tuesday evening, tributes have been pouring onto social media from the music industry and beyond, some of which you can find below...
Goodnight to a legend. R.I.P. Ranking Roger.— thespecials (@thespecials) 27 March 2019
The Specials HQ. x pic.twitter.com/m60sfPsVTu
Very sorry to hear that Ranking Roger has passed away. Rest easy, Rude Boy https://t.co/dQXifw7J9c— Billy Bragg (@billybragg) 26 March 2019
just hearing about ranking roger. a great pillar of my youth. always looked forward to the reunion tours. very sad to hear the news. https://t.co/fk99HCuEw7— darren aronofsky (@DarrenAronofsky) 27 March 2019
Ranking Roger was the heartbeat of The Beat. RIP.— Michael McKean (@MJMcKean) 26 March 2019
RIP Roger Charlery aka Ranking Roger.— pauline black (@paulineblack) 26 March 2019
“Goodnight sweet prince. And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest”. pic.twitter.com/6kVr49cJJH