Cellist Mike Edwards, a founding member of Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) was killed by a giant bale

The founding member of rock band Electric Light Orchestra died instantly after the 1,320-pound bale came tumbling down a steep hill and onto the van he was driving through Devon, England. The bale is believed to have fallen from a tractor working nearby.

Edwards swerved into another vehicle as he was struck but the other driver was uninjured in the crash. Now authorities are reaching out to the 62 year old’s relatives to help with their investigation and formally identify the musician.

“This was a tragic accident and we have now identified the victim as Michael Edwards, a founder member of ELO. We have used photographs and YouTube footage to identify him but we now need help contacting his family for formal identification,” said Sergeant Steve Walker of the Devon and Cornwall police.

Edwards, who was playing cello, quit the band at the height of its fame in 1975 to become a Buddhist.

A tribute to Edwards was today posted on the Face The Music website, described as an ‘official information service for ELO and related artists’.

It said the cellist attracted fans with a unique solo turn – playing his instrument with a grapefruit.

The tribute said: “He played in ELO’s first ever live concert (Croydon, 16 April 1972) and over the next three years toured with them as the band strove to develop and establish their distinctive sound.”

“Mike quickly became a crowd favorite with his exploding cello and rather unique solo party piece that involved playing the cello with a grapefruit!”

“He will be sadly missed by all.”

Mike Edwards talks to Martin Kinch about his Baroque Cello and plays the prelude from the second suite by Johann Sebastian Bach

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Madonna will be directing the second film in her career

According to Variety, actress Vera Farmiga, known for her role in “Up In The Air”, will perform the role of divorced American Wallis Simpson, girlfriend of King Edward VIII.

For now, the actor’s name which will perform the role of the British monarch is not known.

The previous film directed by Madonna was “Filth and Wisdom”, released on the big screen in 2008. For the feature film “WE”, Madonna will write the script in collaboration with Alex Keshishian, the director of the documentary about Madonna, called “Truth or Dare” (1991).

While Variety did not say whether Madonna will reserve a place also in front of the camera in the film “WE”, fans of American artists will be able to see as an actress, coming soon, in an episode of reality TV show “The Marriage Ref”, broadcast on NBC.

Described many times as “one of the best pop artist of all time”, also called “Queen of Pop, Madonna is also the best-selling singer of the twentieth century, according to the Recording Industry Association of America with over 200 million albums sold worldwide. In March last year, she was included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Image source: aceshowbiz.com