Those who knew Dan Fawcett say he had two passions: hanging out with friends and playing guitar.
Police revealed Monday that Fawcett was the victim of a homicide early Sunday morning.
News of his death devastated members of the London music community.
A 2002 episode of The Mike Bullard Show captured Fawcett in his element, sharing a stage with friends and playing guitar. Fawcett and fellow London musician Shaun Sanders backed Helix’s Brian Volmer on the show.
Sanders says playing with the Canadian rock legend was one of the many times he played with Fawcett during their 30-year friendship.
“If you walk into a room and there was a guitar, he just had to pick it up and start playing,” Sanders says. “He always had one on his lap.”
Online tributes poured in after reports Fawcett’s body was found in Gibbons Park just before 7 a.m. on Sunday morning, in what police later said was the city’s fifth homicide of the year.
Sanders says Fawcett was very modest although many were impressed with his playing, saying: “He was very, very humble. He never knew how good he was. He was just such a humble, kind and kindly.”
Fawcett also starred with Elvis tribute artist Tim Hendry in Tim-E and the Yes Men. Hendry moved to London from Sault Ste. Marie more than 30 years ago, and says he met Fawcett shortly after arriving and they quickly became friends.
“We formed, over those 34 years, one of the closest bonds and relationships I’ve ever had with any of my friends,” he says.
Hendry says he and Fawcett played in a number of bands with different genres, and that Fawcett was not only a brilliant player, he was extremely versatile.
“He could play metal. He could shred like Yngvie Malmsteen or Eddie Van Halen. He could play that stuff easily, and then he would do chicken stuff like Jerry Reed or James Burton from the band Elvis,” he explains. “That’s why he was my lead guitarist on the Elvis show.”
Hendry is currently in Pigeon Forge, TN working on an Elvis tribute show. Hendry says he recently had discussions with Fawcett about bringing him in to find work.
“I said, ‘Just update your passport,'” Hendry explains. “We’re going to have you come here to just check. I know I can get you a job,” and he was excited about it.
Hendry says the focus must now be on supporting Fawcett’s loved ones and bringing those responsible for his death to justice.
Sanders says no plans have been made yet, but he expects there will be a concert honoring Fawcett and thinks it could also be used to help raise funds to support Fawcett’s young daughter, Layla.