Multiple media sources have confirmed tonight news that first emerged on Twitter this afternoon, that original Big Star bassist Andy Hummel passed away today at his Fort Worth, Texas, home, after a lengthy battle with cancer. Hummel was 59.
Hummel played on the band's first two, classic, albums, 1972's #1 Record and 1974's Radio City, before leaving the band and eventually relocating to Texas, where he built a successful career in the aeronautics field.
Though he never pursued music as a profession after leaving Big Star, Hummel remained close to the band's legacy, appearing, with drummer Jody Stephens, at a Big Star panel at Austin's South by Southwest Music Festival several years ago, and again last year in the wake of lead singer Alex Chilton's sudden death. Hummel took the stage in Austin this spring to join Stephens and a host of Big Star-influenced musicians in an impromptu tribute concert to Chilton. Here he is, playing bass on "September Gurls," then embracing Stephens — now the band's last surviving member — before leaving the stage: