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Andrew Fletcher, keyboardist and founding member of British digital band Depeche Mode, has died aged 60. A press release issued by the band on social media stated: “We’re shocked and stuffed with overwhelming unhappiness with the premature passing of our pricey pal, member of the family, and bandmate Andy ‘Fletch’ Fletcher.”

Shaped in Basildon within the late Nineteen Seventies, the band has had 17 High 10 albums within the UK, and worldwide chart success with songs together with Take pleasure in The Silence, Private Jesus and Simply Can’t Get Sufficient.

The band went on to say of their assertion: “Fletch had a real coronary heart of gold and was at all times there whenever you wanted assist, a vigorous dialog, a great giggle, or a chilly pint. Our hearts are together with his household, and we ask that you just hold them in your ideas and respect their privateness on this troublesome time.”

Fletcher was born in 1961 in Nottingham, and moved to Basildon the place he fashioned the band Composition Of Sound within the late Nineteen Seventies alongside Martin Gore and Vince Clarke. With the recruitment of singer Dave Gahan they modified their identify to Depeche Mode, and the quartet went on to take pleasure in a spree of early 80s chart hits.

Depeche Mode appear on Top The Pops in 1981, featuring L-R Andrew Fletcher, Dave Gahan, Martin Gore, Vince Clarke.
Depeche Mode seem on High The Pops in 1981, that includes L-R Andrew Fletcher, Dave Gahan, Martin Gore, Vince Clarke. {Photograph}: Michael Putland/Getty Photographs

With the departure of Clarke, who went on to kind Yazoo after which Erasure, Gore grew to become chief songwriter, and, with the addition of Alan Wilder, the band’s sound took a darker, extra gothic flip. That they had big worldwide success within the late 80s and early 90s.

Depeche Mode in Berlin 1984: clockwise from top left Dave Gahan, Alan Wilder, Andrew Fletcher, Martin Gore.
Depeche Mode in Berlin 1984: clockwise from high left Dave Gahan, Alan Wilder, Andrew Fletcher, Martin Gore. {Photograph}: Michael Putland/Getty

Fletcher leaves behind a spouse, Grainne, to whom he was married for nearly 30 years, and two youngsters, Megan and Joe.

He performed on all of Depeche Mode’s studio albums, together with Songs Of Religion And Devotion in 1993 and Extremely in 1997, which each reached No 1 within the album chart within the UK.

Not being the singer or the principle songwriter, Fletcher was typically regarded in later years by followers because the supervisor determine throughout the band, taking care of the enterprise aspect of a gaggle credited with promoting greater than 100m information worldwide. In 2013 he instructed an interviewer that he was “the tall man within the background, with out whom this worldwide company known as Depeche Mode would by no means work”.

Within the 1989 documentary 101 by director D A Pennebaker, which was primarily based across the a hundred and first date of the band’s Music For The Lots tour, Fletcher was much more understating about his function, saying “Martin’s the songwriter, Alan’s the great musician, Dave’s the vocalist, and I bum round.”

Wilder give up in 1995, leaving the group as a three-piece. The band have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Corridor of Fame in 2020.

Depeche Mode’s Take pleasure in The Silence

One of many first artists to pay tribute was Lol Tolhurst, founding member of the Remedy, who stated: “I knew Andy and thought of him a pal. We crossed most of the similar pathways as youthful males. My coronary heart goes out to his household, bandmates, and DM followers.”

Yazoo’s singer Alison Moyet, who recorded on the identical report label as Depeche Mode, said she knew Fletcher from childhood: “I’ve simply heard the information. Since we have been 10. Identical property. Class mates to label mates. He who saved religion with all of the outdated gang they usually with him. It doesn’t compute. Fletch. I’ve no phrases.”

The official social media account of the Pet Store Boys posted: “Fletch was a heat, pleasant and humorous one who beloved digital music and will additionally give wise recommendation in regards to the music enterprise.”

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