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Former Nine Inch Nails man James Woolley dead at 50

A picture of the late James Woolley
James Woolley

Former Nine Inch Nails keyboard player James Woolley has died at the age of 50.

Woolley played with Nine Inch Nails from 1991 to 1994 and toured with the band during their most successful period following the release of 1994 album The Downward Spiral.

His death was confirmed in a Facebook post by his ex wife Kate Van Buren.

She says: “James always stayed close to his children. He loved being a father. Because of significant neck and spine injuries, he wasn’t capable of doing a lot of physical activities with them, but he loved sitting down to paint, or teach piano, or just look at nature. He passed his amazing musical and artistic talents to all three children.”

As well as Nine Inch Nails, Woolley worked with Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford on his band 2wo and also worked on his own project Void.

Woolley is not credited in the sleeve notes for The Downward Spiral, but he did appear in the videos for Wish and March Of The Pigs.

He left Nine Inch Nails in 1994 for family reasons and was replaced by Charlie Clouser.

The cause of Woolley’s death has not yet been revealed, with Van Buren adding: “I wanted our friends to know. Please keep the Woolley family and all his loved ones in your prayers.”

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Stef manned the news desk between 2014-2016 and not only was he a font of knowledge on his favourite band Pixies, but he also played bass in UK rock favourites Logan. He has since emigrated to his beloved Canada.