Legendary Australian singer Stevie Wright has died at the age of 68.
Wright reportedly fell ill on Boxing Day and died at Moruya Hospital on the NSW south coast on Sunday night.
Widely regarded as Australia's first international pop star, Wright fronted legendary Australian rock band the Easybeats whose 1966 hit “Friday on My Mind” reached number one in Australia, number six in the UK and inside the top 20 in the US.
Born in Leeds, England in 1948, Wright migrated to Australia with his family when he was nine years old.
In 1964, at the age of 16, he formed The Easybeats who quickly became Australia's most popular band with hits like “Friday On My Mind”, "She’s So Fine" and "Good Times", which was later covered by INXS and Jimmy Barnes.
Known for energetic performances that would often involve backflips and hurling himself across stage, Wright and the Easybeats drew screaming mobs of hysterical teenage girls and were regarded as the Australian Rolling Stones or Beatles. They supported the Rolling Stones on their 1967 Australian tour.
David Bowie covered “Friday on My Mind” on his 1973 Pin-Ups album and Bruce Springsteen performed the song on his 2014 Australian tour.
The Easybeats broke up in 1969 but Wright continued with a solo career that included the 1974 hit "Evie".
His under-appreciated second solo album 1975’s Black Eyed Bruiser was a solid set of Aussie hard rock and glam that included a legitimate stomper in the title track.
Though Wright had a long history of drug and alcohol addiction he had been clean for many years.
The Easybeats were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2005.