Tributes paid as Aslan keyboardist Pat 'Fitzy' Fitzpatrick dies following cancer battle
Pat Fitzpatrick, the keyboard player for Dublin band Aslan, has passed away following a battle with liver cancer.
Fitzy (60) was originally from Belfast and trained at the Royal College of Music in London before playing with Katmandu and Van Morrison, The Blades and Something Happens.
He also became musical director of The Late Late Show.
Speaking to the Irish Sun, Aslan frontman Christy Dignam paid tribute to his friend, "Fitzy has left a huge hole behind in our lives both as a musician and a friend.
“It wasn’t just music, Fitzy was a lovely human being. He played with such feeling.”
Aslan also took to their Facebook page to share their sadness at Fitzy's passing.
"We are saddened to let you all know that our good friend and keyboard player Patrick Fitzpatrick (Fitzy) passed away peacefully this morning," they wrote.
"Pat played keyboards with us for over 20 years and was there with us on all the gigs and recordings that we did.
"He was not ours alone, he played with Something Happens, The Blades, Van Morrison and lots of other great bands but we liked to think of him as ours."
The band went on to explain that Pat was "rocking the roof off the Cork Opera House" just 11 days ago and "stayed up for drinks" with his fellow band members and his wife.
The Blades also took to Facebook to share their grief.
I was very sad to hear of the passing of Pat Fitzpatrick today. A master musician and an old friend. Rest In Peace.— Paul Harrington (@paulharro) April 19, 2017
Christy (56) is currently facing his own cancer battle and his journey is being filmed for an RTE documentary which will wrap in July before the band is due to play a gig at Dublin's Iveagh Gardens.