It’s been revealed that guitarist Mike Scaccia of Ministry and Rigor Mortis died last night (December 22) following a seizure onstage. The guitarist was performing with Rigor Mortis at singer Bruce Corbitt’s 50th birthday bash at the Rail Club in Fort Worth, Texas when he reportedly asked for the strobe lights to be off before collapsing onstage [UPDATE: it has since been revealed that Scaccia actually suffered a heart attack brought on by heart disease]. He was then rushed to a hospital, but was unable to be revived. Scaccia was 47 years old.

Corbitt confirmed the tragic news via the following post on his personal Facebook page:

“My brother is gone! The only reason I am who I am is because of this man. If it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t even be in a band. RIP Mike Scaccia! The greatest guitar player I ever knew!”

When we spoke to Corbitt a few weeks ago, he revealed that the reformed Rigor Mortis were about to start work on the final mixes of Slaves To The Grave, the band’s first full-length with the original lineup in over 25 years. What will become of the album (which was fully recorded back in February) in light of Scaccia’s passing is currently unknown. In addition to co-founding the veteran Texas thrash group, Scaccia played guitar in Ministry on and off since 1991 (having appeared on numerous albums by the industrial pioneers, including Psalm 69 and their most recent effort Relapse). He also collaborated on numerous side-projects with Ministry frontman Al Jourgensen (who produced the new Rigor Mortis album as well), including Buck Satan And the 666 Shooters and the Revolting Cocks as a live member. Our condolences go out to Scaccia’s family, friends, and bandmates.