Rick Parfitt (left) and Francis Rossi of Status Quo. Photograph: Peter Wafzig/Getty Images
The Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt has died at the age of 68 after suffering from a severe infection.
Parfitt was taken to hospital in Marbella, Spain, on Thursday evening due to complications arising from a pre-existing shoulder injury. He died there at lunchtime on Saturday, his manager and family said in a statement.
“We are truly devastated to have to announce that Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt has passed away at lunchtime today,” the statement said. “He died in hospital in Marbella, Spain, as a result of a severe infection, having been admitted to hospital on Thursday evening following complications to a shoulder injury incurred by a previous fall.
“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. He will be sorely missed by his family, friends, fellow band members, management, crew and his dedicated legion of fans from throughout the world, gained through 50 years of monumental success with Status Quo.”
It added: “Rick is survived by his wife, Lyndsay, their twins, Tommy and Lily, and Rick’s adult children, Rick Jr and Harry. No further comment will be made at this time and Rick’s family and the band ask for their privacy to be respected at this difficult time.”
Parfitt’s son, Rick Parfitt Jr, tweeted:
The Surrey-born guitarist had been dogged by health concerns for years, most recently pulling out of the band’s tour after a heart attack over the summer. Parfitt’s manager, Simon Porter, said at the time that he had “died” for several minutes.
Parfitt underwent a quadruple heart bypass in 1997. Doctors told Parfitt then that his lifestyle involving touring, drink and drugs could kill him. He cut down on his vices but vowed not to become a “born-again Christian” and continued to enjoy the “odd pint”.
Status Quo found success globally with hits such as Rockin’ All Over The World and Whatever You Want. In 2015 the band passed a milestone enjoyed by only a handful of musicians: 500 weeks in the UK album charts.
After news of Parfitt’s death, the band’s official website was updated to show a full-screen picture of him on stage.
Other celebrities paid tribute to Parfitt on social media: