Andy Fraser, who co-wrote the epic 1970 rock hit “All Right Now” when he was with the band Free as a teenager, has passed away in Temecula, California at the age of 62.
While the cause of death has not officially been revealed, Fraser did write in his biography on his official website that he was suffering with both cancer (Kaposi’s Sarcoma), which he fought for many years, along with AIDS.
According to an official statement, he passed away in his California home on Monday, March 16.
“Andrew McLan Fraser passed away on Monday at his home in California. He leaves behind his daughters Hannah and Jasmine Fraser, and their mother Ri, his sister Gail, brothers Gavin and Alex, and many friends and associates in the industry. A survivor of both cancer and AIDS, Andy was a strong social activist and defender of individual human rights.”
FOX411 has published a moving statement by Fraser’s daughter, Hannah, saying she was “shocked and heartbroken” by the loss of her amazing father and that he was a “force of nature.”
— HuffPost UK Ent (@HuffPostUKEnt) March 18, 2015
Hannah spoke of his involvement in humanitarian projects such as Rock Against Trafficking, gay rights issues, the Occupy movement, eco-activism and that he was also involved in co-producing a documentary on Ocean Conservation with her.
“Andy never did things by halves. He was a mover and a shaker, and had unfathomable depths of optimism, even when faced with the biggest challenges. He saw everything as an opportunity to make a difference, turning issues into art and uncovering layers of himself to share bravely with the world.”
Hannah also mentioned Fraser’s wicked sense of humor and that he was a man of few words, ending her emotional statement with a few of her own, “It’s alright now, and he’s finally free.”
Fraser was born in London, England in 1952 and due to his love of music, initially trained as a classical pianist. He mentioned in his biography that his piano teacher thought his hands were too small and in his early teens, Fraser switched to playing rock guitar.
At age 15, Andy played bass guitar with John Mayal and the Bluesbreaker for a while. He then joined Free, a band consisting of vocalist Paul Rodgers, guitarist Paul Kossoff and on drums, Simon Kirke, pictured below with Stevie Winwood during a visit to Amsterdam.
It was when he played with Free that he had his first and biggest hit with the song “All Right Now” (included as a music video above).
The track hit No. 2 on the British singles charts and No. 4 in the U.S.A., but has continued to be popular as a “classic rock” track to this day. Co-writer of the song was Rodgers, who has often been ranked as one of the top rock vocalists of all time.
After Free broke up in 1973, Fraser formed the band Sharks and then went on to form The Andy Fraser Band.
Andy Fraser tributes from Free men Rodgers & Kirke: http://t.co/0lSfNQvZWs
— Classic Rock (@ClassicRockMag) March 18, 2015
Blabbermouth mentioned one of the final interviews with Andy Fraser held on February 8 this year where he spoke about human trafficking. He was interviewed by RocknRolivia of the Rockin’ Rag Magazine while at Rock Against Trafficking’s Grammy after-party in Los Angeles. A video of the interview is included below.
RIP Andy Fraser – a great musician and humanitarian.
[Image: CC by-SA 3.0 GaHetNa (Nationaal Archief NL)]