Irvine Welsh leads tributes to The Fall singer Mark E Smith

Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh has led tributes to Mark E Smith following The Fall singer’s death at the age of 60.

Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh has led tributes to Mark E Smith following The Fall singer’s death at the age of 60.

The singer-songwriter has been hailed as “an artist” and “one of a kind”.

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He was known for his spiky, snarling performances and uncompromising sound as the frontman of the Manchester post-punk group, who died on Wednesday morning.

Leading the tributes, the Trainspotting creator said: “Mark E Smith was a complex, driven man. I greatly admired him as an artist and - both despite and because of his eccentricities - really liked him as a person. Riot in Righteousness, Mark mate.”

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The Fall founder Mark E Smith dies aged 60

Comedian Vic Reeves wrote: “My good friend and my hero. You’ll be so terribly missed by me and millions others. Your words meant more to me than anyone.”

Broadcaster Danny Baker wrote: “Like Bowie, Mark E Smith’s death is being mourned by all ages. I think of him as the gunpowder of the late 70s. Others claim him in the 80s. Yet more for the 90s and then there’s those who caught up with him in this century. That tells you everything.”

Artists Bob and Roberta Smith wrote: “Mark E Smith was an artist. Probably more important than any Turner Prize-winner in the time he was around.”

Comedian Frank Skinner paid tribute to his hero.

He said: “I have stood in many dark clubs watching Mark E Smith prowling the stage amidst a swirl of mic leads and gaffer tape, interfering with speaker knobs, prodding discordantly at keyboards, proclaiming his dark lyrics like a man shouting from a prison window. They were the most exciting music gigs I ever saw or will ever see.

“Mark went his own way, regardless of fashion or financial rewards. He produced the most original, thought-provoking, spine-tingling music I’ve ever heard,” the TV and radio presenter said.

“When I finally got to interview him, he turned up an hour late and greeted me with ‘Hello, Stewart’. I loved him. He was quite simply better than all the rest. I thought he’d live forever. He seemed too belligerent to die. But he has and oh the difference to me.”

Jonathan Ross wrote: “One of a kind. Sad he’s gone.”

Smith’s former wife and ex-band member Brix Smith Start posted: “I’m taking the news in right now. I will put a statement out tomorrow. I hope you will all understand.

“Thank you for your lovely messages, they mean a lot. I love you, Brix”.

American rock band Garbage wrote: “Mark E Smith We will never forget you coming to see us play. Especially when you said watching us play was like watching paint dry. RIP”

Meanwhile, singer Tim Burgess wrote: “So so sad to hear that we’ve lost Mark E Smith. A true uncompromising musical maverick. A genius, a curmudgeon and someone whose company it was an honour to share. So long M.E.S x x x”

Broadcaster Lauren Laverne added: “Oh man. Mark E Smith. One of my biggest heroes. Had a nightmare interviewing him (of course) but then he put me in a song. So sharp, clever and untouchably cool. Thanks for the music, MES.”

Writer and producer Edgar Wright said: “Alas, the great Mark E Smith has passed away. Not merely a legend of indie music, but someone who, for me, was a gateway into that very genre. Will be blasting the A Sides album all week now.

“The Fall are no more, long live the Fall!”

Primal Scream bassist Simone Marie said: “’If you’re gonna play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly’ Thanku for the music Mark E. Smith . X”

The Fall singer had cited dozens of writers and poets as influential, including Thomas Hardy, Philip K Dick, Edgar Allan Poe and HP Lovecraft.