“As previously reported, Type O Negative keyboardist Josh Silver confirmed to blabbermouth.net that Peter Steele passed away yesterday (Wednesday, April 14) at the age of 48. No official cause of death has yet been released, but it is believed that Steele died of heart failure. According to unconfirmed reports, Steele had been ill for days leading up to his death.
Steele was born Petrus T. Ratajczyk on January 4, 1962 in Brooklyn, New York. He stood 6′ 7″ tall, and had a low, bass-heavy voice, which was one of the most recognizable features in Type O Negative’s music. Before forming Type O Negative, Steele played for the metal group Fallout and the thrash band Carnivore.”
This news just kills me. Forty-eight year old men aren’t supposed to die of heart failure. I’ve seen Type O Negative live more times than I could even recount and their shows were always memorable and amazing. Especially their “Annual” Halloween shows at NYC’s Roseland Ballroom – who remembers those? Amazing! Besides being super talented and beyond gorgeous, Pete Steele was also the nicest guy to his fans. He even signed the cover of my Playgirl issue that had his centerfold spread in it – which is framed and hanging on my wall to this day. What a fucking tragedy for the music industry. He will be so missed.
You can read my really fun interview with Peter Steele from 2003 at This link. You can tell he had a unique and engaging sense of humor. Rest in peace, Pete.