(Image of Hugh Hopper taken from Wikipedia.)
I’m seeing news on the internet — though not confirmed by any news organizations yet — that former Soft Machine bassist Hugh Hopper has died. His Wikipedia entry, which mentions his year-long struggle with leukemia, gives the date as “June 2009.” No additional information is available on his official website.
Hopper’s 1973 album 1984 has long been a favorite of mine. His first solo album after leaving the Soft Machine, 1984 combines Hopper’s excellent jazz playing with some experimental processes, especially tape loops, to great effect. It’s fitting that this album, based on the futuristic novel by George Orwell, still sounds ahead of its time.
(1984 cover image from http://www.progarchives.com.)
Download 1984 here.