Francis Monkman Obituary, Death – Curved Air and Sky keyboardist Francis Monkman died at 73. Curved Air announced today on Facebook that Monkman died on Friday, May 12. In the 1980s, Monkman composed cinematic music for The Long Good Friday, The Empire Strikes Back, and Raiders Of The Lost Ark.
“The members of Curved Air are sad to announce the passing of original founder member Francis Monkman on the 12th of May 2023,” the band said. His 1981 progressive rock solo album featured Camel’s, Andy Latimer. After a late-stage cancer diagnosis, Francis died peacefully in his English countryside home alongside his loved ones. Francis played on the band’s first three studio albums before co-founding Sky and playing on their platinum-selling debut and Sky 2.
Francis played synthesizer on The Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Superman II, and two James Bond films, The Spy Who Loved Me and Live and Let Die. Film aficionados love Francis The Long Good Friday score. Francis later pursued his harpsichord and organ interests. He was thrilled to have played at the Bach-Stammhaus and traveled Europe supporting organ restoration.
“If Francis found out there were Curved Air fans in the audience he’d sneak part of Piece Of Mind into his Bach playing with great feeling.” He released The Bach Family solo CD. “Francis is survived by two brothers, nieces, nephews, cousins, his partner Christine, and as a deeply spiritual person he is now reunited with his late 5-year-old daughter, Maya, on the other side.” “During the lunar eclipse on May 5th, Francis Monkman and I shared a last wonderfully vibrant conversation about our music, life and death – and the fine musicians who keep alive the legacy of Curved Air over 50 years and beyond,” said Curved Air singer Sonja Kristina.
“I told him how proud I was to be still performing our beautiful songs, that his passion for sonic adventure was groundbreaking and his lyrics fine and eloquent – notably on Over And Above and Piece Of Mind, his Curved Air extended masterpieces.” “He was a deeply spiritual and kind man who was sensitive and inquisitive about the human condition and the world we live in,” said former Curved Air violinist Darryl Way.
I miss him. “Knowing he was in the world and making his wonderful music was comfort enough.” Prog mourns his family and old bandmates.