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Pete Wells (Rose Tattoo Guitarist) R.I.P.


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One of the great underrated bands and guitar players.


Rose Tattoo guitarist dies

PETE Wells, guitarist and songwriter with legendary Australian rock group Rose Tattoo, has died in Sydney after a long fight with cancer.

Rose Tattoo singer and close friend Angry Anderson said Wells's health had deteriorated dramatically in the past few weeks.

Diagnosed with prostate cancer three years ago, the guitarist had "knocked that on the head", only to have the cancer spread to other parts of his body, Anderson said.

He passed away late last night at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, surrounded by his wife and immediate family.

Like Anderson, Wells's name was synonymous with Rose Tattoo, a hard rock band that conquered the Australian charts in the late 1970s and early 1980s with songs such as Bad Boy for Love and Rock 'n' Roll Outlaw.

The band broke up in 1983, but re-formed in the 1990s to resume recording and touring following a wave of overseas interest.

Anderson paid tribute to Wells today, saying he "had a magic that will live a lot longer than any of us".

"His influence (as a guitar player and songwriter) goes right around the world," he said.

"The musical fraternity in Australia have always realised what wonderful music he's left us, and what an amazingly innovative player he was.

"And we got to meet a lot of young bands when we were touring overseas, who said Rose Tattoo had a huge influence on them. Big bands like Metallica and Guns 'n' Roses."

"The music 30 years on was still rich and influential."

Wells was also a private man. After knowing the guitarist for 30 years, Anderson said there were some things he never knew about him, including how old he was.

"In all the 30 years I've known him, there were certain things I didn't know about him, and his age was one of them," Anderson said.

"That's just the way he was. He was a very private about a lot of things.

"He always claimed he was younger than me, but I knew he wasn't. But I'm 58, and he could only have been a few years older than me."

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