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Passings: Pete Haycock of the Climax Blues Band (1951 - 2013)

Pete Haycock, founding member of the Climax Blues Band, died on Wednesday from a suspected heart attack. He was 62.

The current version of the Climax Blues Band (not to be confused with Haycock's new version of the band), wrote:
Climax Blues Band are saddened by the news of the death of Peter Haycock on October 30th 2013 in Germany. Peter was a founder member of the band in 1967 and performed with the band through to 1985 and was one of the finest exponents of slide guitar of his time, and a great singer. With Colin Cooper he supplied the integral and fundamental guitar and sax sound that contributed to making the band so popular and remains their keynote sound to this date. We are all shocked and sad and would like to pass on our best wishes and condolences to Peter's family and friends.
Haycock was born and went to school in Stafford, England, playing his first show on guitar at a miner's club at the age of 12. He first played with the school band The Mason-Dixon Line and, at the age of 16, he was asked by Colin Cooper to join the soul band called The Gospel Truth. The next year, they added Derek Holt, Richard Jones, George Newsome and Arthur Wood to form the Climax Chicago Blues Band.

The band released five albums under that name while undergoing many changes in their lineup with 1979's Play On (#197) charting in the U.S. for one week and 1972's Rich Man staying on for ten weeks and reaching 150.

Their first album as just the Climax Blues Band was a live album, FM Live, which reached number 107 but it was the next three that established them in the U.S., Sense of Direction (1974 / #37), Stamp Album (1975 / #69) and Gold Plated (1976 / #27).

It was the last album that give the group their biggest hit, Couldn't Get It Right, which broke first in the group's native country, going to number 10, followed by the U.S. where it made it to number 3 on the Hot 100.

While the band continued to record, changes in music tastes made them move from blues-rock to a more pop-rock sound, scoring a second and final hit with I Love You (1981 / #12).

Haycock left the band in 1985 to start a solo career with the album Total Climax, credited to Pete Haycock's Climax. He went on to record two instrumental albums and another under the band name H Factor.

In 1990, Haycock was asked by Bev Bevan to join the Electric Light Orchestra Part II with which he recorded and toured until 1993. He also went on to score and perform for numerous films like K2, Drop Zone, Thelma & Louise, One False Move and The Dilemma.

After a lengthy period away from live performing, Haycock formed Pete Haycock's True Blues in 2008, touring Europe and releasing a live album. This year, Pete had been involved with a new version of the Climax Blues Band who had recorded a few new tracks before Haycock's passing.


roy cooke said…
very sad news for his wife Alex and his fans, some good news is that Pete had finished all of the tracks for their Broke Heart Blues cd, which when released with Alex's blessing will help his memory live on.

For more details and edits of Pete's last work, please visit