Noiseworks and John Farnham guitarist Stuart Fraser dead

Written by on 02/12/2019

Kelly Burke

Monday, 2 December 2019 10:42 am

Noiseworks guitarist Stuart Fraser has died of lung cancer.
Noiseworks guitarist Stuart Fraser has died of lung cancer. Credit: AAP

Tributes are flowing for legendary Australian guitarist Stuart ‘Chet’ Fraser, who died on Sunday.

The founding member of Australian rock band Noiseworks and, later, lead guitarist in the John Farnham Band had been battling lung cancer since late 2016.

Watch a 2016 interview with Stuart Fraser here

Fraser had been receiving treatment at Olivia Newton-John’s Cancer Wellness and Research Centre in Victoria, where he underwent surgery and chemotherapy.

As late as July this year, Noisework’s lead singer and co-founder, Jon Stevens, said he held out hope of a tour to promote the band’s still unreleased fourth album of original material after a 28-year hiatus.

But he said he was waiting for Fraser to gain strength.

Stuart Fraser in 2016.
Stuart Fraser in 2016. Credit: You Tube

“He’s still in and out,” Stevens told the Newcastle Herald.

“He’s still alive, which is a miracle according to doctors.

“He’s working hard to get on top of it and build his strength up.

“He can’t tour a whole gig yet. He hasn’t got the capacity.”

In a June 2017 interview, Fraser talked to News Corp about his recent cancer diagnosis.

“I’ve been a big smoker for all my life so part of me went, well, there’s no free rides,” he said.

“Obviously I’ve stopped smoking, unfortunately it took something severe to make me quit.”

The cover of Noisework's 1987 album Take Me Back, with Stuart 'Chet' Fraser at right.
The cover of Noisework’s 1987 album Take Me Back, with Stuart ‘Chet’ Fraser at right. Credit: Epic

Fraser formed Noiseworks with singer Jon Stevens in 1986.

With bassist Steve Balbi, keyboardist Justin Stanley and drummer Kevin Nicol, the group produced four Australian top 10 albums and achieved three top 10 singles with Take Me Back, Touch and Hot Chilli Woman.

Australian music news website Noise11, he also worked with Tom Jones, Ray Charles, Boz Scaggs, Kylie Minogue, Joe Camilleri, Tommy Emmanuel, Tina Arena, Olivia Newton-John and Diesel.

Students from Melton Secondary College, Kurunjang Secondary College and Staughton College use the Noisework’s classic Touch to send a message about kindness

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