Kevin ‘Geordie’ Walker, Guitarist from Killing Joke Dies at 64

KNEBWORTH, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 2: Kevin Geordie Walker of English post-punk band Killing Joke, live on stage at Sonisphere Festival, August 2, 2009
Kevin Nixon/Classic Rock Magazine/Future Publishing via Getty Images

The English rock band Killing Joke shared some sad news. The band’s guitarist, Kevin “Geordie” Walker, died on Sunday morning after a stroke. He was only 64 years old. The band shared an image of Walker with a post that read, “It is with extreme sadness we confirm that at 6:30am on 26th November 2023 in Prague, Killing Joke’s legendary guitarist Kevin ‘Geordie’ Walker passed away after suffering a stroke, he was surrounded by family. We are devastated. Rest In Peace brother.”

Walker has been praised for his unorthodox style of electric guitar over the years, which he began playing when he was just a teenager. His mother bought him his first guitar in 1973 at Christmas and became a founding member of Killing Joke in 1979 after responding to an ad placed by singer Jaz Coleman. He also played with music supergroups Murder, Inc. and The Damage Manual.

STEVENAGE, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 2: Kevin "Geordie" Walker and Jaz Coleman of Killing Joke performs on stage at Knebworth House on August 2, 2009 in Stevenage, England

Chiaki Nozu/WireImage

Walker was born in England but lived in Royal Oak, Michigan for several years in the 1990s with his wife Ginny Kiraly, and his son Atticus. He later resided and worked in Prague, producing acts such as Mary-Jane and co-operated with Studio Faust Records.

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 06: Kevin "Geordie" Walker of Killing Joke performs at The Roundhouse on November 6, 2015 in London, England.

Lorne Thomson/Redferns

Walker and Coleman were the only consistent members of Killing Joke as the band released 15 albums including 2003’s self-titled album. The song “Loose Cannon” peaked at No. 25 on the U.K.’s Official Charts. Just this year, the band released a new single and did some touring. Randy Blythe, the lead singer of heavy metal band Lamb of God described seeing Walker play last year.

He shared, “It was at this show that I really felt the weight and power of his playing in an individual sense. Geordie played an old hollow-bodied gold Gibson, not the usual choice of guitars for music this heavy and he made everything look completely effortless and cool. I was so excited to play with Killing Joke again at Sick New World festival next year, to witness the power of that guitar once more, but sadly that will not be happening – we lost a true sonic pioneer today. Rest in peace, Geordie; thanks for the incredible music.”

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