Richard Lane exits the stage with applause for his work and spirit ringing out across the world. From national broadcasts to obituaries across the northern hemisphere his contributions to music as a founder, key voice and songwriter in The Stems is justly celebrated. The music never stopped, because Richard was a dynamo and a genius, and between and after the Stems, he enjoyed an unbroken series of notable releases and outfits. The discography is vast, not least of all because Richard Lane insisted that bands should record, and records should be released, even if he had to run a label himself.
Across social media, a unique and quite glorious history has emerged of a truly cool human being, who had everything to give, and gave it all, every day. If the game is to do a million different things for a million different people, and not look for thanks or recognition, then Richard Lane is up there with the greats.
If your icecream fell on the floor, he would buy you another. If you had a song, Richard heard it. If your guitar was broke, Richard fixed it. If you were in trouble, Richard called you. If you were coming down to the show, you were on the door. If you wanted to learn, Richard taught you, and made you see that you knew something to begin with. If you had a cause, Richard would listen, and, if your cause was cool, he showed up for the fight.
But chivalry is just the tip of the iceberg. Richard followed up, he maintained relationships, he supported communities and he brought you into them. He encouraged you, he saw your worth and marvelled at it, and his blue eyes constantly twinkled with love for one and all.
Family Aspirations for the Community
We are getting to know what we lost and what remains... and what remains are the dearest things to the heart of the man. Always a great family person, for many years now Richard has been dedicated to his partner Cathy and his daughter Penny (aged 11). Together they opened and built Penny Lane's Music Workshop
More than a family-run music school, Penny Lane's is a community institution, where young people and older people learn that music is in them and how they might express it; a place where melody is celebrated for its magic, and where it is honed and gifted to the wider community with the utmost love and generosity.
It is called Penny Lane's because it is inspired by Penny and the wonder and joy children know in music. It belongs to Penny and it is guided by her. Penny Lane's remains and must be saved.
Call for Donations
The COVID restrictions have greatly disrupted Penny Lane's music making mission, with students being unable to participate in face-to-face lessons or other school events. Other services offered by Penny Lane's, such as the sale of entry-level instruments, have been severely affected by the downturn. Penny Lane's, like so many businesses, has been battling extreme financial pressures over this period. Another enterprise, Gratias Organics, was forced into immediate hibernation due to the sudden prohibition on pop-up kitchens.
Before these events, Penny Lane's was substantially dependent on the forty or more lessons that Richard delivered each week. This place of music now needs to evolve over the coming months to succeed without his contribution. Richard's family needs your help to keep afloat over this period and pay the bills in order to start the next chapter.
Penny and Cathy are strong women who are dealing with tragic loss. They have support from family, community and friends. We are asking that the wider music community and all people who have been touched by Richard Lane and his work, now dig deep and kick in to assist them in these dire circumstances. Your messages of support and love posted here or at the remembrance space at Penny Lane's are highly valued as well.
Guaranteed that you will look up one night and see two blueish stars twinkling at you in appreciation.
**This fundraiser is run by me, Josh Reynolds, for the exclusive benefit of Cathy Ann Gavranich (partner of Richard) and Penny (their daughter). I am a long standing academic at The University of Western Australia and can be easily identified through the UWA staff directory .
- Stefanie Dobro
- Barbara White
- Fremantle Early Learning Centre
- Ben Hall
- Zanny Wilson
Organizer and beneficiary
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