Punk rock genius Fes Parker dies

ONE of the Fylde coast's most charismatic rock music characters has died after losing his battle with cancer.

The musical pedigree of Fes Parker, who was 60, dates back to the halcyon days of Blackpool's punk scene when the likes of The Membranes, The Fits and Section 25 emerged.

Born Frederick Edward Smith, he took his stage name from his initials and the actor who played the character Davy Crockett in the 1950s.

Once referred to as "Blackpool's answer to Pink Floyd's Syd Barrett" his self-penned albums won much praise and a number of leading fans.

Last year he released what he described as his "definitive best of CD" Side Room which contained favourites from his back catalogue.

Rock journalist and former Membranes frontman John Robb produced nine of the tracks on that album and described Fes as "a musical genius".

He said: "I thought Fes was too tough to die.His songs were pure distilled rock'n'roll genius, straight from the heart. Fes was Syd Barrett through a fuzzbox"

Already a diabetic, Fes, of Anchorsholme, had been ill for some time and was first admitted to hospital last year suffering from cancer of the gullet.

Speaking of his brother, Peter Smith said: "His life was marked by crushing physical sufferings. He endured a seven-day coma after being run over at the age of four, a mental breakdown at the age of 17, a hit and run accident shortly afterwards which permanently weakened his leg."

Fes leaves two brothers, a niece and a long-term partner.

Did you know Fes? If so, leave your tributes below.