It is truly a sad day in music as The Prodigy frontman Keith Flint was found dead Monday in his home outside London, England, on March 4th, 2019.
Following concerns for his welfare, local police were called to Flint’s home in North End, near Great Dunmow, Essex, where he was found dead. The police do not believe that there is anything suspicious about his death. Bandmate Liam Howlett stated via Instagram that Flint ended his own life. Later that day, the official band website went black with an announcement of Flint’s suicide.
“I can’t believe I’m saying this but our brother Keith took his own life over the weekend. I’m shell shocked, f**kin angry, confused and heartbroken.” — Liam Howlett
In response to his death, The Prodigy canceled all scheduled shows.
Who was The Prodigy?
The Prodigy are an English electronic music band from Braintree, Essex, formed in 1990 by keyboardist and songwriter Liam Howlett. The original lineup of the group included MC and vocalist Maxim, vocalist Keith Flint, live keyboardist Leeroy Thornhill, and vocalist Sharky.
The Prodigy first emerged in the underground British rave scene in the early 90s. They achieved their height of popularity and worldwide recognition with UK number one singles, “Firestarter” and “Breathe”. Both of those hits coming in 1996.
The Prodigy was given titles like “the premiere dance act for the alternative masses” and “the Godfathers of Rave”. They are and remain one of the most successful electronic acts of all time. The group has sold an estimated 30 million records worldwide, and won numerous music awards during their career, including two Brit Awards for Best British Dance Act, three MTV Video Music Awards, two Kerrang! Awards, five MTV Europe Music Awards, and two Grammy Award nominations.
Along with the Chemical Brothers and Fatboy Slim, the Prodigy have been credited as pioneers of the big beat genre, which achieved mainstream popularity in the 1990s. The Prodigy, however, could not be placed in one category as their production “often reflected the more intelligent edge of trip-hop, and rarely broke into the mindless arena of true big beat.” The Prodigy were also lumped into categories like alternative dance, techno, electronica, breakbeat hardcore, rave, and even electronic rock, whatever that might be.
The Prodigy shot to international fame in the ’90s with hits like “Firestarter,” “Breathe” but it was the controversial “Smack My Bitch Up” song and video that really put their name in the mouths of many that had no idea who they even were.
Some of their songs and music videos were banned by the BBC, but their music — blending dance, electronic and punk sounds — was extremely popular in Hollywood.
Who was Keith Flint?
Keith Charles Flint was born on September 17th, 1969 in England. He was a vocalist and dancer. Starting out mainly as a dancer, he became the frontman of the group and performed on the group’s two UK number one singles, “Firestarter” and “Breathe”. He was also the lead singer of his own band Flint. He owned a motorcycle racing team, Team Traction Control, which won three Isle of Man TT races in 2015 and competed in the British Supersport Championship.
Following Flint’s death fellow artists from the music world paid tribute to him, including: Serge Pizzorno, Clint Mansell, Azealia Banks, Annie Nightingale, Frank Turner, The Chemical Brothers, Rou Reynolds, Gary Numan, Andy C and Ben Drew.
DJ TREEZ SAYS: Flint was an amazing frontman full of energy and angst. The Prodigy was one of the most influential electronic music acts of all time. There were very few bands that you can compare them to. They truly evolved over time as their music went through many changes. I remember the first time ever hearing the song Charly off of their very first album and being amazed by it. It was so dancy and bizarre. It was like nothing I had ever heard before.
I personally got into electronic music at a very young age. Moby, The Prodigy, 808 State and Quadrophonia were some of the very first artists I listened to man years ago. There was something different about The Prodigy though. They just had more energy than everyone else. This is a sad day. It seems like Flint was a depressed man. It truly is a shame that he is now gone before someone could have helped him.