This is like a very bad joke, Another iconic musician, this time Ranking Roger (born Roger Charlery) vocalist of the 2 tone band The Beat and later General Public, has passed away at the age of 56. According to The Beat’s Facebook post: ““He fought & fought & fought, Roger was a fighter.” 
Sadly Roger past away a few hours ago peacefully at his home surrounded by family. Roger’s family would like to thank everyone for their constant support during this tough time. More to follow in the coming days. RIP ROGER!

This is the 2nd hit in The Beat’s “family”, not even two years after Saxa‘s passing. Roger Charlery was born in Birmingham, England in 1963, and after his punk rock concern in his teenage years, drumming for Nam Nam Boys, he then (late 70’s) joined the ska legends. The rest is history…..

After releasing 3 groundbreaking albums, ‘I Just Can’t Stop It (1980), ‘Wha’ppen?‘ (1981) and ‘Special Beat Service‘ (1982) and the band’s break-up the restless soul met with  Mickey Billingham and Andy “Stoker” Growcott of Dexys Midnight Runners and Horace Panter of The Specials, forming General Public. Their sound could be described as a hybrid of new wave, ska, reggae, hip-hop and electronic releasing 3 full-length albums, among numerous singles and EP’s, before disbanding.

Apart from other collaborations, Ranking Roger was also active on his own, releasing two solo albums, ‘Radical Departure‘ (1988) & ‘Inside My Head‘ (2001).

Despite Roger’s serious health issues over the past few years, he was a real fighter, remaining active until his very end releasing ‘Public Confidential‘ (the 2nd album after The Beat’s reformation), two months ago.

Rest in peace Groovy Man!

Christos Doukakis