Rick Huxley, bassist for British Invasion legends the Dave Clark Five, has passed away. The BBC reports that Huxley, age 72, had been a heavy smoker and had long battled emphysema.

Band leader Dave Clark said of Huxley, "Rick was a dear friend and an immensely talented musician with an amazing sense of humor, he always made me smile." He called the news "devastating" saying,"We'd talk once a week. I spoke to Rick on Friday (Feb. 8), he was in great spirits."

Huxley was a founding member of the band, who first formed in 1958, and stayed with the group until they disbanded in 1970. The Dave Clark Five exploded in the US in 1964 as part of the British Invasion and were, for a short time, viewed as the only genuine rivals to the Beatles. They scored a number of dynamic Top 10 hits including 'Glad All Over,' 'Bits And Pieces,' 'Catch Us If You Can,' and 'Anyway You Want It' (later covered by Kiss) to name a few. The band were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame in 2008.

In remembering his friend further, Clark said "he was the funny one in the group, and a very talented musician." DC5 sax player Dennis Payton and singer Mike Smith both passed away within the last decade, and now with the passing of Huxley, that leaves only guitarist Lenny Davidson and Clark as surviving members of this very important group.

Watch The Dave Clark Five Perform 'Anyway You Want It'

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