In Memoriam: Phil Spalding

Phil Spalding

Photo: Paul Michael Hughes/Peavey

Sad news to report today as bassist Phil Spalding has died of undisclosed causes. He was 65 years old.

Spalding was born in London and worked at a bank in the early ’70s before joining Bernie Tormé in 1976. In the next few years, he would collaborate with Toyah. The ‘80s saw him working with the prog supergroup GTR and joining “Tubular Bells” guitarist Mike Oldfield’s band.

“Sad to hear of the passing of Phil Spalding,” Yes keyboardist Geoff Downes wrote on Twitter, “A very talented bass guitarist and all-round great guy who I had the pleasure of working with on the GTR albums and several other projects.”

Spalding became a bigger figure in the studio scene as time progressed and contributed the bass lines to hits like “I’m Too Sexy” by Right Said Fred, “Supreme” by Robbie Williams and the Lion King soundtrack. As per his website, he was the “sometime bass player” for Elton John, Mick Jagger, Ray Charles, Seal, Mel C, and many more.

Spalding had recently been working on an autobiography. He was also slated to join Oldfield on tour to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Tubular Bells.

Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Phil Spalding.

Get daily bass updates.

Get the latest news, videos, lessons, and more in your inbox every morning.

Share your thoughts