The Czech musician, composer, filmmaker and producer Ivan Král passed away Sunday, Feb. 2, at the age of 71, according to Reuters.
Král’s wife, Cindy Hudson, also confirmed the news in a statement that was shared on Twitter by Greg Jarvis of The Flowers of Hell (Král played bass on their 2009 album Come Hell or High Water). The statement revealed that the cause of death was cancer.
Král performed with some of the most enduring acts from the thriving punk scene in the 1970s, including Blondie, David Bowie, Iggie Pop and, most notably, the Patti Smith Group. He co-wrote many songs with Smith, including “Dancing Barefoot” from the 1979 album Wave. Král also had a hand in crafting songs on Smith’s albums Horses, Radio Ethiopia, Easter and the live album Exodus, all of which were recorded in the ‘70s.
An unflinching portrayal of NYC’s music scene and the punk bands that came through venues like CBGB’s was also the focus of Král’s documentary film The Blank Generation, which featured interviews with The Ramones, Richard Hell and The Voidoids, Talking Heads, New York Dolls, Patti Smith and Blondie, among others.
Král also boasted an extensive solo music career, with distinct success in his home country of the Czech Republic, spanning from 1992 to 2014. A forthcoming 2020 album called Smile is set to be released posthumously on Feb. 28.
You can watch Král perform “Dancing Barefoot” below, with Smith circa 1979 and the Detroit All-Star Revue in 2011, respectively.