Swell star David Freel dies as bandmates confirm tragic news with heavy hearts

Swell singer David Freel has died at the age of 64.

The musician passed away in the US on 12 April, according to a message on the indie rock band's Facebook page.

The post said the star was "loved and missed but never forgotten".

It said: "It is with heavy hearts that we share the passing of Swell's David Freel, in Oregon City at 2.10 AM on April 12, 2022.

"In the years after Swell's touring schedule, David found a home and a family in Oregon. For 14 years, he continued to create; whether that be music or Vinyl On Demand, he always had a project at hand.

"David led with spontaneous curiosity and an appreciation for the world around him, always learning more, he even learned how to surf. His final released project ¡¡GREASY!! of Be My Weapon was an example of his eccentric genius as a musician."

The tribute said that at the age of 56, David "found love, bought a home, and settled down with Jen".

It went on: "To his Portland family, David was a gentle, patient, and humorous friend, Uncle, and partner. After years of travel and struggle, he had become the man he had always wanted to be in Oregon.

"David is loved and missed but never forgotten. Just play one of his songs or close your eyes to see his presence on stage. He will be there strumming his well-loved, ramshackle 1970s Takamine.

"The admirers of Swell and David Freel will mourn his loss but celebrate his life and legacy. As David would say, live every day like it is your last and never say goodbye, but rather see you soon. Thank you."

The band's Monte Vallier also paid tribute, saying that playing in a band was never David's intention and that he just wanted to write songs.

"He wrote some truly original and timeless songs that will outlive us all," he said.

"The Swell days were some of the best ones of my life, also the most challenging," said Monte.

"What held me there was the gravitational pull of David. I was lucky to be one of the planets in his orbit."

Swell formed in San Francisco in the late 80s.

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