Steve Mackey performing with Jarvis Cocker in Pulp. Photograph: Mick Hutson/Redferns

Musician died following three month stay in hospital, with wife Katie Grand describing him as “the most talented man I have ever known

Steve Mackey, the bass guitarist for Pulp during the band’s most successful years, has died aged 56.

His wife, stylist Katie Grand, announced the news on her Instagram page, writing:

“After three months in hospital, fighting with all his strength and determination, we are shocked and devastated to have said goodbye to my brilliant, beautiful husband, Steve Mackey. Steve died today, a loss which has left myself, his son Marley, parents Kath and Paul, sister Michelle and many friends all heartbroken. Steve was the most talented man I have ever known, an exceptional musician, producer, photographer and filmmaker. As in life, he was adored by everyone whose paths he crossed in the multiple creative disciplines he conquered. I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to all the NHS staff who worked tirelessly for Steve. He will be missed beyond words.”

Mackey joined Pulp in 1989, first contributing to their third album Separations. He went on to play on all their following studio albums, including Different Class’ and ‘His ’n’ Hers which are considered some of the best albums during the mid-90s Britpop scene.

Pulp went on hiatus in 2002, but reformed for live performances across the world in 2011 and 2012. They released one final recording, an update of a demo track called ‘After You’, in 2013.

In October 2022, Mackey announced that he wouldn’t be joining Pulp for their latest set of reunion concerts in summer 2023. “I’m exceptionally proud of the body of work we’ve created together … however I’ve decided to continue the work I’m engaged in – music, film-making and photography projects.”

In a band statement posted on social media following his death, Pulp described him as a “beloved friend” and pictured him hiking in the Andes during the group’s 2012 reunion. “Steve suggested we go climbing … So we did. & it was a completely magical experience. Far more magical than staring at the hotel room wall all day … Steve made things happen. In his life & in the band. & We’d very much like to think that he’s back in those mountains now, on the next stage of his adventure.