It is with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Alan Cartwright, bassist with Procol Harum from 1971–1976.
His first appearance was on the Live in Edmonton album and he continued until the change of personnel after Procol’s Ninth.
I met Alan in 1966 through Barrie Wilson and Kenny White, as the four of us had grown up in the same area of Edmonton/Enfield, and I believe Alan always remained in that area North of London.
Looking back, he was always a very solid, musical, and reliable bass player, and a good bloke who gave of his best both in the studio and on the extensive tours Procol did when he was with us.
We lost touch around Something Magic and then Procol disbanded and the ashes went into the ground. It wasn’t until 1997, when Shine On put together the Thirtieth Anniversary gig in Redhill, that we made contact again and he appeared in the multi-Harum reunion. It was such a pleasure to see him, but sad that he wasn’t playing bass much anymore – the break-up of PH in 1977 seemed to send so many of us off into uncharted waters.
I often think of those very rich years when Alan, Mick Grabham, BJ and Copping were my constant companions, sharing music, humour, endless voyages, and cocktails – only five years but, to me, the most memorable Procol Harum era of all time thanks to the wonderful positive presence of Cartwright.
Rest in peace, Alan.
More Procol personnel | Alan Cartwright's BtP page