Jamiroquai co-founder Toby Smith dies, aged 46

Tasha Hegarty
Photo credit: Ron Galella / Getty Images

From Digital Spy

Toby Smith, co-founder and keyboard player of Jamiroquai, has died at the age of 46.

The keyboard player passed away on Wednesday (April 12) and bandmates Jay Kay and Stuart Zender have both paid tribute to him on social media.

Photo credit: Getty Images

On the band's Facebook page, Jay Kay said his "heart hangs so heavy with grief and pain" at his friend's death.

He wrote: "Toby had fought this voracious illness with his own indefatigable and stubborn brand of spirit and courage for a very long time, and until fairly recently, had shown all the signs of beating it, only for it to take him away so cruelly from his wife, his children, his relations and his many friends."

He added: "I want to remember Toby as the guy who struck me with his magic the first time I heard him play in my small bedsit in 1992, the guy who made laugh and cry in equal measure as we wrote the songs you all sing.

"The guy who would entertain us all on our most arduous tours with his obtuse sense of humour, and the guy who would crack me up with his quirky sense of style and his unique and candid views on people, life and love."

Bassist Stuart Zender wrote on Instagram: "I love you so much. My big brother Toby crossed over to the other side last night.

"All my fondest memories are of him and the band that we created. The most talented musician I have ever had the honor to make music with.

"There will never be another like you Toby. Your light will shine on eternally. Thank you for making mine and everyone's life so bright."

Smith left the band back in 2002 to focus on his family, but didn't stay out of the industry.

He managed and produced music for The Hoosiers and in 2013 he co-produced X Factor's Matt Cardle's third album Porcelain.

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