Pioneering house music producer Paul Johnson has died at the age of 50 after succumbing to complications of the COVID-19 virus.

The Chicago DJ had been hospitalized and placed in intensive care after contracting the coronavirus last month, according to NME. "Our greatness passed away this morning at 9am the house music legend we all know as PJ aka Paul Johnson," reads a statement shared on Johnson's Facebook.

Ubiquitously considered a pioneer in the house music scene, Johnson got his start in the industry as a break dancer in Chicago in the mid-90s. According to BBC, he was the first name mentioned on record by Daft Punk as one of the legendary duo's musical influences.

Prior to his tragic death, the late producer was revered as a role model for musicians with disabilities. After an accidental shooting in 1987 that left him paralyzed, he had one of his legs amputated. His other leg was eventually amputated following a car crash in 2010.

“The crappy life I’ve had health wise, that’s been nothing, man," he said in a 2014 interview. "That’s just been a shadow to what I’ve been doing, I don’t even see it, nobody sees it. It’s all about the music."

Recommended Articles

Monstercat - Compound 2021 (Art)

Monstercat Teams Up With Westwood Recordings for Celebratory 8-Track Compilation

The expansive compilation celebrates the return of Monstercat's annual Vancouver-based Compound event.

steve aoki armin van buuren

Steve Aoki and Armin van Buuren Join Forces for First-Ever Collab, "Music Means Love Forever"

Aoki and van Buuren's anthemic new single arrives via the former's Dim Mak imprint.


AREA21 Announce Debut Album Release Date, Tease First-Ever Performance at Life Is Beautiful

We might see the live show debut of Martin Garrix and Maejor sooner than we thought.

Many prominent figures in the music community paid tribute to Johnson, whose 1999 single "Get Get Down" remains one of house music's most seminal.

"So sad to hear that Paul Johnson has lost his fight," wrote Defected Records founder Simon Dunmore. "Today has been tragic for our scene."

"Absolutely gutted! My idol," added renowned DJ and house producer Patrick Topping. "The best to ever do it."

We at express our sincere condolences to the family, fans, friends, and loved ones of Paul Johnson.



Legendary Liverpool Venue Zanzibar to Permanently Close Due to Impact of COVID-19

"Covid-19 has been a massive kick in the teeth for everyone."

pierce fulton

Pierce Fulton Has Died Following Struggles With Mental Health

"Pierce was so incredibly full of life, love & unimaginable creativity."


Renowned Electronic Music Producer i_o Has Died

The team at expresses our sincere condolences to the family, fans, friends, and loved ones of i_o.

NHSessions DJ Bodalia

This Doctor Has Been Livestreaming DJ Sets to Lift Spirits During the COVID-19 Pandemic

DJ Bodalia has been using his NHSessions streams to entertain the masses during the coronavirus pandemic.


Porter Robinson Has Completed "Nurture": "It’s My Favorite Music I've Ever Made"

Nurture is 100% finished and will be out in "a few months."


Australian Breakbeat Legend Phil K Has Died

The venerated DJ and producer passed away after a battle with bladder cancer.

Dave Booth

Legendary Manchester DJ Dave Booth Has Died

A fixture of the Manchester music scene, Dave Booth enjoyed a successful multi-decade career.

Paul van Dyk AEON NYC 2017

For Legendary DJ Paul van Dyk It's All About the Music [INTERVIEW]

Having been a DJ for close to thirty years, Paul van Dyk reflects on how he got into DJing and what the EDM scene was like.