Rock Music Legend Dead at 75: Dennis Thompson Was a Member of Pivotal Group MC5

The rock music sphere has lost yet another pivotal figure, following the deaths of producer Steve Albini, The Dicks' Gary Floyd and several other key figures in recent weeks. Now, Dennis Thompson, the last surviving member of MC5's classic lineup, has died. He was 75.

Detroit Free Press reported Thompson's death, saying it came after a recent health decline. Thompson, who played drums in the legendary '60s rock band, suffered a heart attack in April and was rehabbing at MediLodge of Taylor in Taylor, Michigan at the time of his passing on Thursday.

(Photo: Jim Dyson / Getty Images)

MC5 solidified themselves in rock history despite only releasing three albums. The band's rough-around-the-edges sound, rowdy attitude and thrilling live performances led to infamy amongst rock music fans, with many believing the band essentially served as one of the first punk rock groups. Their 1969 song "Kick Out the Jams" is firmly established in the rock music canon, thanks in part to the battle cry of "Kick out the jams, motherf—ers!" by frontman Rob Tyner at the start of the song.

Thompson's death comes just weeks after the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame announced intentions to induct MC5 through its Musical Excellence award, alongside fellow recipients Jimmy Buffett, Dionne Warwick and Norman Whitfield. MC5 will still be inducted in the Oct. 19 ceremony; it is unclear who will represent the group at the ceremony.

According to Detroit Free Press, who spoke with Tyner's widow Becky, Thompson's reaction to the induction news was "It's about f—ing time!"

Thompson's death follows the recent deaths of his MC5 bandmate Wayne Kramer on Feb. 2 and the longtime MC5 manager John Sinclair on April 2. Elsewhere in the rock world, several major deaths have occurred in recent weeks. In addition to Albini and Floyd, Duane Eddy, Moody Blues' Mike Pinder, Prism's Rocket Norton, Ignatius Jones, and Gavin Webb of The Masters Apprentices have all passed away.