After 50 long years in the music industry, Ray Vanderby had no intention of slowing down. His collaborations with multiple prominent artists across an eclectic range of styles demonstrates Vanderby’s commitment to Australian music. He released his final album in 2022, Comet 2 Comet, which was a hit and showcased the wide variety of musical skill and aesthetics that Ray commanded seemingly effortlessly. Unfortunately, Ray passed away in the last few days. Today, we take the time to remember him.
He lives on through his music and is remembered fondly as an Australian musical icon. He will be sorely missed by all of us at Blue Pie and those close to him. Ray has been ill for some time with cancer, but for many years he has continued to fight the good fight and play his wonderful music, defying medical predictions and burning brightly right until the end of his days.
“Musician” is a word that describes Ray Vanderby, but it does not cover the full scope of his experience with all things musical. He was a song writer, composer, producer, director, piano tuner, and a frontman singer. He played organ, piano, keyboards, and guitar. He has seen his fair share of musical experience with multiple groups, all of which you can read about here in his official bio.
For a brief summary: In 2016 Vanderby formed Corrugated Iron, with Jon Wilby on bass, and Mark Welch on drums. They released the album Magical Land the following year. Wilby left the band and was replaced by Shane Dickerson, and the group released the album Rock Of The Ages in 2018, with the addition of Ado Hadson on guitar. But that is far from Ray’s first outing – he formed his first band, Eros, in 1969! One giant leap for rock kind! Since then, he joined and started multiple bands throughout the ages, each time adding a feather to his cap and becoming yet more iconic to Australian audiences and fans around the world. Recently, he pivoted more towards solo work and produced some of his best creations throughout his career, pouring the wealth of experience that he held into them, and reaping the results as one might expect.
Ray Vanderby will be deeply missed in the years to come, and all of us at Blue Pie were very privileged to know him and work so closely with him throughout the years. If you feel the same, please take the time to reflect on his musical accomplishments with us, as we bid him farewell… and for a musical life well-played, bid him “bravo”.