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Joe Strummer

John Graham Mellor (August 24, 1952 - December 22, 2002), better known as Joe Strummer, was the co-founder and lead singer of punk rock band The Clash.

Before the Clash, he played in the Vultures and The 101ers[?]. The Clash were the most musically diverse and overtly political of the original English punk bands. Strummer was a controversial figure who became involved with the left-wing Anti-Nazi League and Rock Against Racism[?] campaigns. He later also gave his support to the Rock Against the Rich series of concerts organised by anarchist organisation Class War. The Clash's London Calling album was voted best album of the 1980s by Rolling Stone magazine.

After the disbanding of the Clash, he acted in a few movies, recorded movie soundtracks (notably "Love Kills" for the film Sid and Nancy[?]) and experimented with different backing bands with limited success. Finally, in the mid- to late-1990s, Strummer gathered top-flight musicians into a backing band he called The Mescaleros[?]. Strummer signed with the Californian punk label Hellcat Records[?], and issued a stunning album co-written with Anthony Genn, called Rock Art and the X-Ray Style. A tour of England and North America soon followed; sets included several Clash-fan favourites.

Following the release of Global A Go-Go, Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros mounted a 21-date tour of North America, Britain, and Ireland. Once again, these concerts featured Clash material ("London Calling", "Rudie Can't Fail"), as well as classic covers of reggae hits ("The Harder They Come", "A Message To You, Rudie") and regularly closed the show with a nod to the late Joey Ramone by playing The Ramones' "Blitzkrieg Bop".

They also toured Australia in 2000 with the Big Day Out concert series, to a very warm reception.

Shortly before his death Joe Strummer co-wrote a song, "48864", for Nelson Mandela as part of a campaign against AIDS in Africa, and had been scheduled to play at Mandela's SOS fundraising concert in February 2003 on Robben Island.

Strummer died on December 22, 2002 in his home in Somerset, England, the victim of a heart attack. His untimely death at the age of 50 shocked and saddened a generation of Britons and other fans to whom he had been an inspirational figure.

After the death of Joe Strummer in 2002. A tribute peformance was performed at the 45th Annual Grammy Awards by Elvis Costello,Bruce Springsteen,Steven Van Zandt[?],Dave Grohl and Tony Kanal[?].

Joe Strummer solo discography (see also Clash discography)

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