Rick Parfitt, the guitarist for British rock outfit Status Quo has died at age 68.
Parfitt joined the band in 1964 when they were known as The Spectres, before they became Status Quo in 1967.
His manager Simon Porter and Parfitt’s family issued a statement yesterday via Facebook confirming that the guitarist and songwriter died in Spain on Christmas eve from a severe infection.
“We are truly devastated to have to announce that Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt has passed away at lunchtime today,” said the statement. “This tragic news comes at a time when Rick was hugely looking forward to launching a solo career with an album and autobiography planned for 2017 following his departure from Status Quo’s touring activities on medical advice.”
Parfitt’s family and the band have requested privacy at this time and the statement indicated that no further comment will be made on the circumstances leading up to his death.
His son issued his own statement via Twitter, writing “I cannot describe the sadness I feel right now. To many he was a rockstar, to me he was simply ‘Dad’, and I loved him hugely.”
I cannot describe the sadness I feel right now. To many he was a rockstar, to me he was simply 'Dad', and I loved him hugely. RIP Pappa Parf
— Rick Parfitt Jnr (@RickParfittJnr) December 24, 2016
ABC News reports that Parfitt had been in hospital since Thursday, 22nd December as a result of complications from a shoulder injury that he sustained during a fall.
Status Quo were most recently involved in re-purposing their 1975 hit ‘Down Down’ for an advertising campaign for Australian supermarket chain Coles.
You can read the band’s statement in full, below.
Watch: Status Quo – ‘Down Down’