Richard Tandy, Keyboardist for Electric Light Orchestra, Dies at 76

Richard Tandy

Richard Tandy, the keyboardist for the British rock band Electric Light Orchestra, had died. He was 76.

Jeff Lynne, the band’s frontman and leader, announced his death on social media Wednesday, writing, “It is with great sadness that I share the news of the passing of my long-time collaborator and dear friend Richard Tandy. He was a remarkable musician & friend and I’ll cherish the lifetime of memories we had together. Sending all my love to Sheila & the Tandy family.”

Tandy’s cause of death was not immediately available.

Born on March 26, 1948, in Birmingham, England, Tandy first joined ELO following the release of the band’s first album in 1972. He started by playing bass guitar but eventually transitioned to the keyboard after another band member exited.

Tandy was also among the three core members, including Lynne and Bev Bevan, who stayed with the rock band until it disbanded in 1986.

The musician played Minimoog synthesiser, a Wurlitzer electric piano, the Clavinet, Mellotron and piano, all of which helped define the group’s unique sound — a fusion of pop and orchestral arrangements. In total, they released 15 studio albums, which included the Top 10 hits “Evil Woman,” “Telephone Line” and “Don’t Bring Me Down.”

Some of the group’s other beloved songs were “Xanadu,” “Hold on Tight,” “Livin’ Thing,” “Can’t Get It Out of My Head,” “Mr. Blue Sky” and “Strange Magic.”

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ELO was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017. And when Lynne reformed the band in the 2000s, Tandy was the only other longtime member to return.

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