Andy “Fletch” Fletcher, Depeche Mode‘s keyboardist for over 40 years, died at the age of 60.
On the band’s official social media platforms, Depeche Mode announced the death of founding member Fletcher.
Fletcher died of natural causes on Thursday at his home in the United Kingdom, according to a source close to the band. Because they were not permitted to speak publicly, the individual spoke on condition of anonymity.
“With the tragic death of our dear friend, family member, and bandmate Andy ‘Fletch’ Fletcher, we are horrified and overcome with enormous sadness,” the band stated in a statement. “Fletch had a true gold heart and was always ready to lend a hand, a lively discussion, a good laugh, or a cold pint when you needed it.”
Depeche Mode was founded in 1980 in Basildon, England, by Fletcher, fellow synthesizer players Vince Clarke and Martin Gore, and lead singer Dave Gahan.
The band’s debut album, “Speak and Spell,” was released a year later and featured the modest hit “New Life” as well as “Just Can’t Get Enough,” one of the band’s most enduring singles.
Following the release of the album, Clarke would depart the group, and Alan Wilder would take his place.
With “Some Great Reward” and the single “People Are People” in 1984, the group gained international acclaim, and their popularity grew steadily throughout the 1980s and early 1990s.
“Music for the Masses,” “Black Celebration,” and “Violator” are among the albums on which Fletcher played keyboards.
The first of them spawned a world tour that resulted in a live CD, a documentary, and a renowned performance at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, which marked the band’s apex.
Fletcher, a redhead with a chess obsession, kept a low profile in the group. He never sang or wrote songs, and his face was never as well-known as his comrades’.
In the tour documentary, “101,” he commented, “Martin’s the songwriter, Alan’s the good guitarist, Dave’s the vocalist, and I bum around.”
However, amid the squabbles of his more famous bandmates, Fletch was a unifying force who was frequently the deciding vote.
He was also a member of the band’s bass section.
Only Gahan and Gore remain as permanent members after his death.
As word of his death spread, Fletcher’s musical peers paid him respect.
“Not only did his keyboard sounds shape Depeche Mode’s aural style, but he also influenced Techno, EDM, Downtempo, Triphop, and Electronica.” Vernon Reid, the guitarist with Living Colour, tweeted, “Critical loss.”
“A nice, charming, and humorous individual who loves electronic music,” the Pet Shop Boys wrote on Twitter.
Andy Fletcher of Depeche Mode died, and we’re both sorry and startled. Fletch was a pleasant, personable, and hilarious guy who enjoyed electronic music and could also give sound business advice.
Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark described him as a “wonderful person in an incredible band” on Twitter.
Fletcher was up in Nottingham, England, as the eldest of four siblings.
He became friends with Clarke as a child, as well as singer Alison Moyet, with whom he would form Yazoo (known as Yaz in the United States) after Clarke departed Depeche Mode.
Moyet tweeted Thursday, “Since we were ten.” “We live on the same property.” Classmates will be tasked with identifying their classmates. He remained loyal to the entire old gang and they to him. It’s not adding up. Fletch. “Words fail me.”
- Death Row Records Singer Jewell Caples has Reportedly Died
- Democrats Are in A Bad Political Situation, and It’s Just Going to Get Worse
Fletcher and Clarke formed the short-lived band “No Romance” when they were both in their teens.
Fletcher founded the Composition of Sound trio with Gore, whom he met in a pub in Basildon in 1980. Later that year, Gahan joined the band, and the band’s name was changed to Depeche Mode.
Fletcher stayed with the band until his death, but he had to miss a portion of a tour in 1994 due to depression.
In 2002, he launched Toast Hawaii, a record label that released an album by CLIENT.
Fletcher would DJ at the band’s live gigs, which he continued to do after he and CLIENT split up.
Gráinne Mullan, Fletcher’s wife of nearly 30 years, and their children Megan and Joe are left to mourn his death.