Autograph founding bassist Randy Rand has died. The group released a statement on their social media platforms announcing the news. He was surrounded by his wife, Regina Rand, and family at the time of his death.
“It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I announce the unexpected passing of our dear friend and founding member of Autograph, Randy Rand,” the band wrote. “Although beyond the desolation, we find some solace and solace in knowing that the past two years have been among his happiest as an artist and as a performer. Randy was a consummate optimist and was so excited to see the new direction, creativity and renewed energy with the band. You could feel his enthusiasm – as it was quite palpable with his playing abilities, his performances and the way he interacted with his fans well -loved.
“Collectively over the past two years with this lineup, we’ve spent many hours that have blossomed into something magical while creating an unbreakable bond that few bands are blessed with. We’ve had that… and with that, we will continue to honor Randy Rand, as he would have us do and honor our musical commitments and preserve his legacy,” they added.
Read the full statement below.
Rand began playing in bands around the Sunset Strip area in the mid-70s. He then formed Autograph in Pasadena, California in 1984 alongside vocalist Steve Plunkett, guitarist Steve Lynch, keyboardist Steven Isham and by drummer Keni Richards. Their first album Please login, which was released later that year, featured their one and only single “Turn Up the Radio”. The song’s popularity helped propel the album into the Top 30 of the Billboard 200, and it was eventually certified gold.
Autograph released two more albums thereafter – 1985 That’s the thing and 1987 Loud and clear – before disbanding in 1989. Rand decided to pursue a career in making leather accessories afterwards.
“When the band broke up, we knew it was time to move on. The grunge scene took over the rock world, and I was tired of chasing after success when it wasn’t anymore. Just the smell of a running bus generator makes me sick now,” the rocker said. Legendary Rock Interviews in 2012.
“It didn’t take long to figure out what I wanted to do, I was making leather accessories in my spare time, so I put all my energy into it. Before I knew it, I was selling my stuff on Melrose , then EASYRIDER hired me as a salesperson for their stores and retail catalog, I met my competitor Steve and we formed a business together which is a high end dog collar company called “Woof Wear” , and that’s what I’m still doing 12 years later.”
Punkett first reformed Autograph with a whole new lineup in the early 2000s and released a single album titled buzz before separating again. However, in 2013 Rand, Lynch and Richards decided to reunite Autograph, but without Plunkett, as he was no longer interested. Vocalist Simon Daniels was recruited to take Plunkett’s place after discovering him on YouTube, and then Marc Wieland joined the following year on drums in Richards’ place.
They came out Stronger in 2016 and loose your ass the following year, then Lynch left the group. At the time of Rand’s death, he was the only original member remaining.
Loudwire sends condolences to Rand’s loved ones and fans. Rest in peace.
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