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Mikey Walsh found dead...

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Mikey Welsh, the former bassist for the American rock band Weezer, has died in Chicago of a suspected overdose, authorities said Sunday. He was 40.

Welsh, who played with the alternative rock group from 1998 to 2001 before leaving the band and starting a second career as a painter, was found unconscious in his hotel room on Saturday.

Weezer said in a statement on its website that Welsh was in the city for the Chicago RiotFest to see his former band play.

Welsh, who performed on the album "Weezer" (better known as the "Green Album") including hits "Hash Pipe" and "Island in the Sun," had left the band after suffering a nervous breakdown, according to the band's statement.

On September 26 Welsh wrote an ominous message on his Twitter feed, saying: "dreamt i died in chicago next weekend (heart attack in my sleep). need to write my will today."

Weezer described their former bassist as "a unique talent, a deeply loving friend and father, and a great artist" who channeled his energy and enthusiasm into his painting after emerging from his nervous breakdown.

"It was a glorious flowering of a talent he always possessed, but he had chosen to rock out first, paint later."

Weezer was founded in 1992 by lead singer Rivers Cuomo. They have released nine full-length albums and have sold more than nine million records in the United States.

The band was due to play Chicago later Sunday, and on their website said the show would go ahead.

"Mikey would never want the rock stopped on his account -- quite the contrary in fact. While we won't see him, we know he will be there rocking out with us!"

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