Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchison 'wrote the words many felt but could not say'
- Craig Angus
- 11 May 2018
Scottish singer-songwriter's death felt far and wide within the music and arts community
The news of Scott Hutchison's passing is devastating. It is a hammer blow for the music community in Scotland and will be felt profoundly the world over, as those who had been touched by Frightened Rabbit's music and Scott's gift as a songwriter of extraordinary talent come to terms with their loss. The sadness felt by his family, and close friends is impossible to imagine.
At 36 years old Scott had so much more to give. Frightened Rabbit were working on a sixth album that he'd said could be finished by the end of the year. He'd recently released the first Mastersystem record, Dance Music, was a much loved member of the spoken word collective Neu! Reekie!, releasing a solo album in 2014 under the moniker Owl John.
His songs did that most wonderful thing – they brought people together; countless friendships were formed in schools, student halls, pubs, at sweaty gig venues, as music lovers discussed the band's seminal album The Midnight Organ Fight. Hundreds of broken hearts were consoled by its raw power. It's a bleak record, yes, but one full of dark humour – the kind that you can't get through a break up without – and a musical journey that ends with it's protagonist embracing the road ahead, with all the challenges it may present. A glimmer of light in a dark place. The recent 10-year anniversary tour of The Midnight Organ Fight was a timely reminder of its cathartic powers.
Frightened Rabbit began in 2003 as a solo project. In an interview with Spin back in 2010, Scott discussed the choice of name, saying 'I thought of Frightened Rabbit because it was a nickname given to me by my mum when I was younger. I was incredibly shy as a child, almost chronically so'. Having studied at Glasgow School of Art for four years, it gave an endlessly creative man another outlet for his work, another voice – one that would grow from humble beginnings to reach millions.
That Frightened Rabbit would go on to headline festivals wasn't always obvious. Enlisting first the help of brother Grant on drums, as well as multi-instrumentalist Billy Kennedy, the charmingly low budget, high-energy debut album Sing The Greys was released as a limited 1000 copy run by Glasgow-based indie label Hits The Fan back in 2006. Word got around that this was a special talent – the first run of that record quickly sold out.