Musicians from across the world paid tribute to Andy Fletcher, co-founder and keyboardist of New Wave band Depeche Mode who died Thursday, May 26, at the age of 60.
First to do so is his own band of 40 years.
Depeche Mode’s statement read: “We are shocked and filled with overwhelming sadness with the untimely passing of our dear friend, family member and bandmate Andy ‘Fletch’ Fletcher.”
It went on to say that “Fletch had a true heart of gold and was always there when you needed support, lively conversation, a good laugh or a cold pint.”
80’s electronic pop contemporary Alison Moyet said: “I have just heard the news. Since we were 10. Same estate. Classmates to label mates. He who kept faith with all the old gang and they with him. It doesn’t compute. Fletch. I have no words.”
Orchestral Manouevers in the Dark wrote: “Tonight we are celebrating selling out The Greek Theatre in LA but it will be touched by a great sadness as all of us say farewell to Andy Fletcher from Depeche Mode. A beautiful person in an amazing band. We send all our love to his family.”
Lol Tolhurst of The Cure said in a tweet: “Very sad news today. Andy Fletcher of Depeche Mode has passed. I knew Andy and considered him a friend. We crossed many of the same pathways as younger men. My heart goes out to his family, bandmates, and DM fans., RIP Fletch.”
Pet Shop Boys likewise tweeted: “We’re saddened and shocked that Andy Fletcher of Depeche Mode has died. Fletch was a warm, friendly and funny person who loved electronic music and could also give sensible advice about the music business.”
Rocker Vernon Reid, guitarist of In Living Colour also paid his respect. “From the MOMENT Violator begins, you know you have been ushered into a New Landscape of Sound. Delightful. Familiar. Strange. Funky. Unknown. Every swell, every attack is transportive. Every sound Just So. Andy Fletcher was a Mage, not a muggle.”
Even Right Said Fred chipped in: “Ffs, very very sad. We rehearsed next to DM at the old Nomis Studios in Olympia, London. Very nice guys, no airs and graces. X”
A steady hand for the beloved and influential synth-pop band, Fletcher appeared in all Depeche Mode albums up to the most recent, 2017’s “Spirit.”
The band formed in 1980 and released its debut album “Speak and Spell” in 1981.
Fletcher, alongside lead vocalist Dave Gahan, singer-songwriter Martin Gore founded the group with former member Vince Clarke.
The band went on to become one of the biggest bands of the 80’s and 90’s and contributed in shaping synth-pop and electronic music to what it is now.
“The beauty of using electronics is that music can now be made in your bedroom. You don’t need to get four people together in some warehouse to practice. You don’t have to have four excellent musicians fighting among themselves. You can do it in your bedroom, and it’s all down to ideas,” Fletcher said in a past interview.
Depeche Mode was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2020.