Bill Rieflin, Drummer For King Crimson, R.E.M., & More, Dead At 59

Bill Rieflin, a drummer who played with R.E.M., Ministry, King Crimson and others, died on Tuesday, March 24, after an eight-year battle with cancer. He was 59.

“Seattle native and lifelong resident, Bill was a world-class musician who was at home on the drums, guitar, bass, and keyboards,” Rieflin’s family said in a statement to Rolling Stone. “He was also an accomplished composer and producer who possessed a sophisticated ear, a depth of rare talent, and complete dedication to his craft.”

“Bill also lost his beloved wife of 27 years, master painter Francesca Sundsten, to cancer last year. His refined manner, brilliant mind, eye for the ironic, and legendary sense of humor defined him as a man of discerning taste, palate, and company. We will miss him terribly,” his family added.

“Bill Rieflin flew from this world c. 18.50 Pacific, 18.50 UK,” King Crimson founder Robert Fripp wrote on Facebook. “Fly well, Brother Bill! My life is immeasurably richer for knowing you.”

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