Bassist John Regan Passed Away at 71
via Jim Powers / Youtube
John Regan, the former bassist of Ace Frehley and Peter Frampton, passed away on Friday at the age of 71.
The musician died at his Wappingers Falls home in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., but no cause of death was given at the time. After previously working as the Wappingers Falls parks commissioner, Regan had been co-hosting a local radio show since 2014.
A statement from the Chance Theater in Poughkeepsie reads:
“We are sad to announce the passing of one of our Chance family, John Regan.
“John was an incredible musician, a rockstar, but most of all, he was one of the nicest, most humble humans you’ve ever known. John, you will be missed by all of us who had the honor of knowing you.”
Regan was a member of Frehley’s Comet from 1984 to 1990. He contributed to three albums: 1987’s Frehley’s Comet, 1988’s Second Sighting and 1989’s Trouble Walkin’. While in a partnership that spanned several decades, he toured with Frampton and appeared on his albums starting with 1980s Rise Up.
In a tribute to Regan, Frampton wrote on Twitter:
“There might only be a handful, if that, of people who come into your world and truly enrich your life.
“I have lost one of my closest buddies. He certainly enriched my life because of the person and the great player he was. John Regan was the best of us. He went out of his way to help people when things weren’t right. It didn’t matter who you were, prince or pauper. I know there are many of you out there who knew him. He was a friend to all. Always musically inspiring and one of the funniest people on the planet. My thoughts are with his wife Cathy, his children, Christopher and Jeness, and his grandchildren. I love you, my brother. You will be missed by so many. Rest in peace.”
Regan additionally played on Mick Jagger and David Bowie’s 1985 single “Dancing in the Street” and the Rolling Stones’ 1986 Dirty Work cut “Winning Ugly.” Further credits include Bowie’s 1993 LP Black Tie White Noise and David Lee Roth’s 1994 effort Your Filthy Little Mouth. In 2014, Regan formed Four by Fate with former Frehley’s Comet guitarist and vocalist Tod Howarth and ex-Skid Row drummer Rob Affuso. They released their debut album, Relentless, in 2016.
Among his other works, Regan also played on Mick Jagger and David Bowie’s 1985 single “Dancing in the Street” and the Rolling Stones’ 1986 Dirty Work cut “Winning Ugly.” In 2014, Regan formed Four by Fate with former Frehley’s Comet guitarist and vocalist Tod Howarth and ex-Skid Row drummer Rob Affuso and released their debut album in 2016, Relentless.
Howarth also wrote a tribute on Facebook saying:
“John, of course, was a world-class talent and an incredible human being — and from a personal level, he was responsible for me joining him with Ace and Anton [Fig].
“He was also responsible for the championing of my song ‘It’s Over Now.’ There’s way too much to say and it’s hard to type, stopping and starting constantly. I really haven’t stopped crying most of today as the music world loses another. … What’s more important is the man, the music, love, talent and friendship that he shared for his 71 years.”
In a 2016 Songfacts interview, Regan reflected on his approach to playing bass. He said:
“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.”