Former FREHLEY'S COMET Bassist JOHN REGAN Dies At 71
April 7, 2023
Acclaimed rock bassist John Regan has died at the age of 71. No cause of death has been revealed.
Regan had performed with Tod Howarth, drummer Anton Fig of "Late Show With David Letterman" fame and original KISS guitarist Ace Frehley in the band FREHLEY'S COMET. His recording credits also include Peter Frampton, THE ROLLING STONES, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, David Lee Roth, Robin Trower, Billy Idol and many more.
According to the Poughkeepsie Journal, Regan met Frehley in the mid-1980s at a friend's recording studio in White Plains, New York. The two got together for a jam session, playing Jimi Hendrix and LED ZEPPELIN tunes, and that led to Regan's involvement with FREHLEY'S COMET. His tenure with that band lasted until about 1990.
Asked about Frehley, Regan told the Poughkeepsie Journal: "He's a kook, in a good sense. In a world full of copies, he's a one-off. He's an original."
And regarding the allure of KISS, the hard rockers known for outlandish costumes and makeup, Regan said: "It was almost like getting a rock band and a circus on the same night. It was an event ... It was a multi-sensory experience ... It was a total immersion in this spectacle that nobody else was doing."
In a 2016 interview with Songfacts, John stated about his approach to working with big-name artists: "I have been fortunate to have worked with artists that did not dictate on any level. Keeping in mind, that I have always approached my contribution to a recording or live performance as one of 'facilitator.' By that I mean it is always in the forefront of my mind to try and play my bass parts to best serve the song, singer and my fellow musicians. Peter [Frampton] in particular is a pleasure to work with in that regard. For the better part of 31 years, from 1979 through 2010, it was an honor to compose and perform his music."
Regarding his studio work with other artists, John said: "Spending time working in studio with the likes of Frampton, Billy Idol, Mick Jagger and David Bowie, THE ROLLING STONES, Michael Monroe and legendary producers such as Eddie Kramer and Nile Rodgers, just to name a few, has been nothing short of awe inspiring and profoundly enjoyable. Suffice to say, each project had moments that I was pinching myself, just to make sure I wasn't dreaming.
"One experience that became a high-water mark was getting the call from Nile Rodgers, through my dear friend Rob Sabino, to stop by and replace a bass part on the track that David Bowie and Mick Jagger had recorded for Live Aid: 'Dancing In The Street'. That song had long been favorite of mine, but when I arrived at the studio to find Mick Jagger greeting me, it was something I will never forget.
"My most vivid memory of that day was that it happened to be one of those rare occasions that the part that made the final recording was a first take for me, but as I was laying down the bass track I could see Mick dancing around the studio, just getting into the music as if he were onstage. Powerful moment in time for me, and it hit home how much Jagger was moved by the power of the song, and how sincere his love of music must be."
In recent years, Regan and Howarth had both performed with FOUR BY FATE. The seeds for that band were planted nearly 40 years ago, when Regan encountered Howarth while Tod was on tour performing with Rock And Roll Hall Of Famers CHEAP TRICK. Howarth and Regan were later joined in FOUR BY FATE by guitarist/songwriter Patrick James Gasperini (POUND, FLYWHEEL) and former SKID ROW drummer Rob Affuso.
Photo credit: Tracy Ketcher
We are sad to announce the passing of one of our Chance family, John Regan. John was an incredible musician, a rockstar,...
To say I'm gutted is an understatement! Just heard that John Regan has passed..Someone who I considered a friend and inspiration..deepest condolences to his family..very sad news indeed..RIP my friend..
BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).