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Former Lillian Axe guitarist Jon Ster dead at 52

Former Lillian Axe and Stiff guitarist Jon Ster has died aged 52, it’s been announced.

He was pronounced dead at the Presbyterian Hospital, Dallas as a result of heart failure earlier this week.

Ster was a member of Stiff before joining Lillian Axe for their self-titled debut in 1988. He went on to play on 1989’s Love + War, 1992’s Poetic Justice and 1993’s Psychoschizophrenia. After Lillian Axe split in 1995, he became a member of Velvet Poker Dogs and, most recently, Brand New Machine.

His former Lillian Axe bandmate Steve Blaze paid tribute to the guitarist on the band’s Facebook page, praising his character and his commitment to making music.

He says: “He was solid, a great guitarist, played keys, sang well and beyond all else, he was a star. He made people laugh, smile, and want to be around him. Over the last few years, even when I only saw him occasionally, we always picked up where we left off, laughing, smiling, and telling the many stories from our 12 years together in Lillian Axe.”

He continues: “I never heard or saw him in a bad mood. He never had a bad thing to say about anyone. He loved being on the road, and he loved everything to do with playing music. He was the guy everyone wanted to hang out with after the show.”

Brand New Machine frontman Brantly Thompson called him “one of the most talented guitarists I’ve ever met.” He added: “The world was a much better place with Jon in it and he left us a legacy of great music, a beautiful daughter and tonnes of amazing memories.”

Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.