It has been reported that Depeche Mode’s keyboardist Andy “Fletch” Fletcher has died. The iconic musician was 60 years old. Depeche Mode announced the death of founding member Fletcher on its official social media pages.
“We are shocked and filled with overwhelming sadness with the untimely passing of our dear friend, family member and bandmate Andy ‘Fletch’ Fletcher,” the band’s posts said. “Fletch had a true heart of gold and was always there when you needed support, a lively conversation, a good laugh, or a cold pint.”
Depeche Mode was formed by the lineup of Gahan, Gore, Andy Fletcher, and Vince Clarke, and released their debut album Speak & Spell in 1981, bringing the band onto the British new wave scene. Founding member Clarke left after the release of the album; they recorded A Broken Frame as a trio. Gore took over as main songwriter and later, in 1982, Alan Wilder replaced Clarke, establishing a lineup that continued for 13 years. The band’s last albums of the 1980s, Black Celebration and Music for the Masses, established them as a dominant force within the electronic music scene. A highlight of this era was the band’s June 1988 concert at the Pasadena Rose Bowl, where they drew a crowd in excess of 60,000 people. In early 1990, they released Violator, an international mainstream success. The following album Songs of Faith and Devotion, released in 1993, was also a success, though the band’s internal struggles during recording and touring resulted in Wilder’s departure in 1995. The band continued with the trio lineup of Gahan, Gore, and Fletcher.
Depeche Mode was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2020. Gahan, Fletcher and Gore had to accept the honor remotely along with all the other inductees in the pandemic year. As usual, Fletcher let his bandmates do nearly all the talking.
His death leaves Gahan and Gore as the only permanent members.Fletcher is survived by his wife of nearly 30 years Gráinne Mullan, and their children Megan and Joe.