Faye Fantarrow, a talented young British singer and songwriter, passed away at the age of 21. She had recently released her debut EP, which was produced by Eurythmics star Dave Stewart. Fantarrow’s mother, Pam Fantarrow, announced her daughter’s death on Saturday, revealing that she had been diagnosed with a rare glioma brain tumor in September 2022. This devastating news came after Fantarrow had already overcome leukemia twice, first at the age of 8 and then again at 13.
Dave Stewart, who signed Fantarrow from his hometown of Sunderland, England, was deeply saddened by her passing. He had overseen the release of her seven-song EP, titled “AWOL,” which was recorded in the Bahamas and released in February through his label, Bay Street Records. In a statement, Stewart expressed his devastation and admiration for Fantarrow’s talent. He described her as a joy to be around, full of fun and sharpness, and a true artist in every sense. Stewart cherished the moments spent with Fantarrow during the creation of her debut album and considered her a diamond in his memory. He expressed his luck in having met both Fantarrow and her mother, who fought against all odds for her survival. Stewart acknowledged their strength and dignity and regretted that the world only had the chance to witness Fantarrow’s genius for a short time. He concluded by expressing his deep love for her.
Born on April 28, 2002, Fantarrow had already made a name for herself in the music industry. She was recognized as “One to Watch” by BBC Music Introducing and received the prestigious Alan Hull’s annual Songwriting Award in 2021. Music critics praised her talent and unique style. In a review, Joe Lynch of Billboard described Fantarrow’s “AWOL” as an impressive demonstration of her alt-soul phrasing. He likened her distinctiveness to that of Alessia Cara and even compared her to Adele at certain points.
To seek treatment for her brain tumor, Fantarrow launched a fundraising campaign to cover the costs of experimental treatment at City of Hope. In the first round of fundraising, she raised over £235,000 (almost $300,000). However, she became too ill to travel back to California for follow-up care. Excess funds that were raised beyond her immediate needs were donated to charity for further research in her memory.
Despite the challenges she faced in her health journey, Fantarrow remained resilient and focused on her passion. She firmly believed that her purpose in life was to write, sing, and perform. She felt fortunate to have been able to pursue her dreams and create music, even though her life had taken unexpected turns.
Faye Fantarrow’s untimely death is a tremendous loss for the music industry and for those who had the privilege of knowing her. Her talent, passion, and determination shone through her music, leaving a lasting impact on all who listened. Although her time may have been cut short, her legacy will live on through her art. In her memory, excess funds from her fundraising campaign will continue to support research efforts, ensuring that her spirit and love for music continue to inspire others in the future. May she rest in peace, knowing that her music touched the hearts of many and left a lasting imprint on the world.