Original Mercyful Fate Bassist Timi Hansen Dead at 61

Timi Hansen, bassist and founding member of Danish extreme-metal pioneers Mercyful Fate, has passed away following a battle with cancer. He was 61. The news was confirmed by his former bandmate King Diamond via Facebook. Hansen played in Mercyful Fate from 1981 to 1985 and again from 1992 to 1993. From 1985 to 1987, he was a member of King Diamond’s solo band.

“I just found out that I lost one of my dearest friends, who has been fighting cancer for a long time, in such an incredibly brave way,” King Diamond wrote. “He was not just my roommate on the early Mercyful Fate tours, but he was always my favorite bass player of all times. I was fortunate to have been able to visit him at his apartment with some other good friends, and we had a great afternoon that will never be forgotten.

“When I last talked to Timi on the phone on October 24th, I could understand that things had gotten tougher than they ever were, and yet he said ‘we fight on.’

“I feel so so sad for his entire family, you have my absolute deepest sympathy.

“Rest in Peace my dear dear friend.”

Mercyful Fate were, of course, a seminal influence on many heavy-metal bands, foremost among them, Metallica, whose 1998 covers album Garage, Inc. includes a medley of their songs, “Satan’s Fall”, “Curse of the Pharaohs”, “A Corpse Without Soul”, “Into the Coven” and “Evil.” Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich, a fellow Dane, paid tribute to Hansen via Instagram. “Timi was of course the OG bass player in Mercyful Fate, who most of you hopefully know have played a significant role in our history,” the drummer wrote. “Along with his fellow bandmates, King, Hank, Michael & Kim, they welcomed us to Denmark in 1984 with open arms, let us use their rehearsal studio where we wrote songs for the ‘Ride The Lightning’ album, leant us their equipment, showed us the best of Copenhagen, became our partners in crime….Over the years we enjoyed endless amounts of incredible moments together, including an almost complete reunion at our 30th Anniversary shows at the Fillmore in 2011. And ultimately, again as most of you know, we recorded 12 minutes of their finest musical moments as the track ‘Mercyful Fate’ on the ‘Garage Inc.’ album in ’98 and have enjoyed playing that occasionally over the years with various members joining us for their respective parts.”

“Timi Forhelvede man, tak for de fede minder og for de fedeste stunder!” Ulrich concluded in Danish.

Mercyful Fate are set to reunite in 2020 for an unspecified number of shows, including next year’s edition of the Copenhell festival in their homeland. The band’s lineup for the concerts will consist of King Diamond, Hank Shermann on guitar, Bjarne T. Holm on drums, Mike Wead on guitar and Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning) playing bass.

 

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Incredibly saddened to hear the news of Timi Hansen’s untimely passing.  He was not only a close friend of mine and a close friend of the band’s, but he was part of a musical force that helped shape Metallica’s sound, direction & desire to be in a hard rock band. Timi was of course the OG bass player in Mercyful Fate, who most of you hopefully know have played a significant role in our history. Along with his fellow bandmates, King, Hank, Michael & Kim, they welcomed us to Denmark in 1984 with open arms, let us use their rehearsal studio where we wrote songs for the “Ride the Lightning” album, leant us their equipment, showed us the best of Copenhagen, became our partners in crime….Over the years we enjoyed endless amounts of incredible moments together, including an almost complete reunion at our 30th Anniversary shows at the Fillmore in 2011.  And ultimately, again as most of you know, we recorded 12 minutes of their finest musical moments as the track “Mercyful Fate” on the Garage Inc. album in ’98 and have enjoyed playing that occasionally over the years with various members joining us for their respective parts. Timi Forhelvede man, tak for de fede minder og for de fedeste stunder! Rest In Peace.

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