Sadly, longtime Mastodon manager Nick John has lost his battle with pancreatic cancer. Guitarist/vocalist Brent Hinds confirmed the news earlier today via Instagram showing a photo of John with a comment reading, “RIP Nick John” followed by a broken heart emoji.
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John began his career with Def American, working with Slayer. He began working with Mastodon in 2006, and helped mold them into a band that was nominated for Grammy awards multiple times, with them finally winning an award this year for “Sultan’s Curse.” While the band was already established by the time John started managing them, they made the jump from Relapse to Reprise for their third album, Blood Mountain, a label they remain on. And as the band’s profile got larger, John kept the band grounded and helped them immeasurably. He also worked with Gojira and briefly managed High on Fire
Blabbermouth reports, rock photographer Andrew Stuart paid a tribute to John by sharing a post on Facebook:
“Still not computing that this day is actually real. Rest easy Nick John. I’m honored to have spent over 15 years working with you, learning from you and becoming your friend. You’ll always live on as family, I love you dude. Fuck fuck fuck cancer. Hug all your people. Hug all animals. Love music. Extra love to Nick’s wife Colleen, The RSE camp especially my sister/wife Kristen, Mastodon, Gojira and every artist who’s life and career was touched by Nick”
The group tragically has an extensive history with this deadly disease as they have lost family members from cancer, which their latest effort 2017’s Emperor of Sand was based on. The band broke the news of John’s declining health last week when Hinds and Brann Dailor shared an image on social media. Mastodon were originally scheduled to embark on a tour this month but it was cancelled “due to a critical situation of a member of the Mastodon family.”
Our condolences go out to Nick John’s friends and family during this difficult time.