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UFO bass player Pete Way passes away at age 69

August 15, 2020

UFO bass player Pete Way has died aged 69 after suffering 'life-threatening' injuries in an accident two months ago which eventually led to his death.  

 

The legendary founder of the iconic rock band died with his wife Jenny by his side on Friday morning. The father-of-two, who also founded groups Waysted and Fastway, and was the former bassist for Ozzy Osbourne leaves behind daughters Zowie and Charlotte.  

 

His passing was announced on the Pete Way Official Facebook page in a statement which read: 'Iconic bass player Pete Way founder of UFO, Waysted, and latterly, The Pete Way Band has died.

He began his career as a studio musician for many artists. He played in bands with friends from high school and later created a band with friends Phil Mogg, Andy Parker and Mick Bolton. This became the original UFO lineup. After two studio albums with their original guitarist, the band then recruited the guitar wunderkind Michael Schenker from Scorpions. Later the band signed on guitarist/keyboardist and long-time friend Paul Raymond. The group released many albums and singles and had two UK top 40 hits.

 

Disliking the more commercially accessible direction UFO were taking in the early 1980s, Way jumped ship to form Fastway with former Motörhead guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke. Pete was unable to extricate himself from a contract he signed with Chrysalis and stepped down to play bass for Ozzy Osbourne during the Diary of a Madman tour.

 

In 1982, Way formed the punningly titled Waysted with Fin Muir, Paul Raymond, Frank Noon and Ronnie Kayfield. Their debut album Vices was released in 1982 and reached #78 in the UK chart. The band's third album, Save your Prayers, was their most successful in America where it reached #185.

 

In 1992, Way joined Phil Mogg in the reformed UFO and released the High Stakes & Dangerous Men album. However, Way was unable to take part in the 2009 tours for UFO's album The Visitor due to a medical condition; and because he had drug issues and the US would not allow him to enter the country. He has not played with UFO since, but made guest appearances with Michael Schenker. Way released two albums under the Damage Control banner, the first album Damage Control was recorded with Robin George, Spike and Chris Slade; the second was recorded as a trio with Robin and Pete sharing lead vocals.

 

During UFO's 1970s heyday, he used a Fender Precision bass, which along with his trademark striped trousers largely influenced the stage appearance of Steve Harris.[citation needed]

Way switched to Gibson Thunderbird basses, which are renowned for the hard edged rock tone; however, he recently commented that he has been using an Epiphone Thunderbird as he found it seemed to have a fatter tone.[citation needed] He has also been known to use basses by Ibanez, most notably a pink Ibanez Iceman bass, and the Washburn B-20 for which he was pictured in an advertising campaign. His image was also used in an ad campaign by Artex basses.

 

In 2017, he released his autobiography, with the aid of professional writer Paul Rees, called A Fast Ride Out of Here: Confessions of Rock's Most Dangerous Man.

 

In 2018, he formed the Pete Way Band along with guitarist Kamil Woj and Jason Poole, and also recorded a guest bass on a Warfare song along with Evo and Fast Eddie Clarke titled "Misanthropy", which will be released in 2020 on Cherry Red Records.

 

In June 2019, PWB launched the UK tour with the new lineup consisting of two ex-UFO members.

 

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