Pete Shelley—one of the greatest composers and performers of the punk era—died yesterday in Estonia.
Shelley—who avoided gender pronouns in his songs and adopted the family name of Percy and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley—formed Buzzcocks in 1976 with Howard Devoto, releasing the EP Spiral Scratch (which includes the song “Boredom”) at the end of that year.
Devoto departed in 1977, eventually forming Magazine, leaving Shelley lead the Buzzcocks on guitar and vocals though several albums until their disbandment in 1981.
Local audiences still recall the revival tour which brought the band to Sunset Junction in August 2007, drawing the largest crowd in the music fair’s history.
Top: Pete Shelley, performing with the Buzzcocks at The Roundhouse, London, May 28, 1978. Photograph by Gus Stewart/Redferns. © 1978 Gus Stewart.
Album cover image credit: United Artists.