On May 18, 1980, Joy Division's singer, lyricist, and sometimes guitarist Ian Curtis hanged himself in the kitchen of his house in Macclesfield, England at the age of 23. It was also the eve of what would have been Joy Division's first US tour. He died about 8 months after this BBC performance.
Curtis was alone, he and his wife were seperated at the time, and he had just watched Werner Herzog's 1977 film "Stroszek" and listened to Iggy Pop's album "The Idiot."
There's a rumor that Curtis left a suicide note, there's a rumor that he left two notes. One of the notes was placed by the still-spinning record player and to have read, "At this very moment, I wish I were dead. I just can't cope anymore." His wife Deborah doesn't talk much about it, although Joy Division bassist Peter Hook has gone on to say as much.