Singer-Songwriter Vic Chesnutt died this afternoon in Athens, Georgia. There had been unconfirmed reports that he died last night, which proved to be untrue. At 5:27 PM EST, New York Times critic Ben Sisario gave an official word:
Vic Chesnutt, a singer-songwriter whose music dealt with mortality and black humor, died on Friday in a hospital in Athens, Ga., a spokesman for his family said. He was 45 and lived in Athens.
He had been in a coma after taking an overdose of muscle relaxants earlier this week, said the family spokesman, Jem Cohen.
My thoughts and condolences go out to Chesnutt’s family and friends during a very hard time.
Chesnutt, 45, was a key player in the Athens, Georgia music scene for nearly three decades. Other Athens-based musical acts included R.E.M., The B-52s, Neutral Milk Hotel, Of Montreal and Elf Power: a number of these acts collaborated with Chesnutt. This past year, Chesnutt released two albums, At The Cut and Skitter On Take-Off.
UPDATE: You may read the official press release about Chesnutt’s death from Constellation Records here.