Alan Lancaster, founding member of British rock group Status Quo who has lived more than half of his life in Australia, has died in Sydney at the age of 72.
- Lancaster played bass with Status Quo from 1962 to 1985
- He participated in reunion concerts in 2013 and 2014
- Having met his Australian wife in 1973, he moved to Sydney in 1986
Bassist, Lancaster formed the group as The Scorpions in 1962 with singer Francis Rossi, who was a classmate at Sedgehill Comprehensive School in London.
With a hard rock but melodious style, Status Quo has had over 60 top 40 hits in the UK, including Down Down and Everything You Want.
They opened the 1985 Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium in London with arguably their most famous song, Rocking All Over The World.
Lancaster “passed away this morning at his home in Sydney, surrounded by his family,” according to entertainment journalist Craig Bennett.
“At the request of his loving and deeply cherished family, I am heartbroken to announce the passing of Alan Lancaster, British-born king of music, god of the guitar and founding member of the iconic band Status Quo” Bennett wrote on Facebook.
Lancaster had lived with multiple sclerosis for many years, but performed in Status Quo concerts in 2013 and 2014, after leaving the band in 1985.
After moving to Sydney in the mid-1980s, Lancaster performed with prominent Australian bands including The Bombers and The Party Boys.
Bennett said Lancaster chose to leave the UK after meeting his Australian wife Dayle while touring in 1973 with Slade and Lindisfarne.
“Alan is survived by Dayle, his children Alan Jr, Toni and David, as well as five grandchildren,” Bennett wrote on Facebook.
The 2013-14 comeback tour was billed as the reunion of the Frantic Four as it brought together Lancaster, Rossi, singer-guitarist Rick Parfitt and longtime drummer John Coghlan.
They adopted the name The Status Quo – later shortened to Status Quo – in August 1967 after Parfitt joined the group.
In recent years, he has reestablished his relationship with Rossi and Parfitt, who reportedly fell out when they recorded material without him after moving to Australia.
Parfitt died of sepsis in 2016 at the age of 68, after suffering a heart attack earlier in the year.
Rossi, 72, continues to perform with a five-piece Status Quo that includes John Edwards, Lancaster’s replacement on bass guitar, and keyboardist Andy Brown, who has been a full-time member since 1982.
Lancaster has performed on the first 16 of Status Quo’s 33 albums since 1968, including 1975’s On The Level which featured 1974’s Down Down, their first UK number 1 single.