In Memoriam: Randy Rand
Randy Rand, who co-founded the ’80s hard rock outfit Autograph, has died of undisclosed causes. He was 62 years old. The news was shared by the band in an official statement.
“It is with great sorrow and heavy hearts to announce the unexpected passing of our cherished friend and founding member of Autograph, Randy Rand. At the time of death, Randy was surrounded by his beautiful and infinite love, Regina Rand and family,” they wrote. “Although beyond devastated, we find some comfort and solace knowing the last couple of years have been some of his happiest as an artist and as a performer. Randy was the consummate optimist and was so excited to see the new direction, creativity and renewed energy with the band. You could feel his excitement- as it was quite palpable with his playing abilities, performances and the way he interacted with his beloved fans.”
Randy hit the scene in L.A. in the late ’70s, working in bands and as a session musician before co-founding Autograph in 1983. The band got a foothold while opening for Van Halen, leading to a contract with RCA Records. Their debut album Sign In Please dropped in in 1984, but it wasn’t until 1985 that their song “Turn Up the Radio” was a hit.
Autograph released two more albums before breaking up in 1989. Rand pursued a career in leatherworking including an international import/export shop. In 2011, he rekindled his friendship with guitarist Steve Lynch at the NAMM Show. They would reunite Autograph in 2013 sans singer Steve Plunkett. Lynch left the band in 2019, leaving Rand as the sole original member. It was announced in February that Autograph was working on material for a new studio album with Frontiers Music Srl.
Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Randy Rand.