Ex-Viola Beach member left ‘devastated’ after their deaths

Frank Coulson, who quit the band, says "If I had stayed with them it could have been me"

Former Viola Beach member Frank Coulson has broken his silence following their tragic deaths over the weekend.

As previously reported, the band, comprising of members Kris Leonard, River Reeves, Tomas Lowe and Jack Dakin, plus their manager Craig Tarry were killed in a car crash in Sweden when their car plunged 80ft off a bridge in Stockholm.

Coulson, who was a founding member of Viola Beach, was in the Indie band for two years before deciding to leave ahead of his final year of university.

He formed the group with best friend Kris in 2013 at Priestley College in Warrington, with the student left “devastated” by their deaths.

NMEPress

Speaking to The Sun, he said: “Kris just loved playing music and he said he would make me famous one day. I played with them at The Cavern in Liverpool and did an interview alongside Kris for Radio Merseyside.

“Viola Beach could have gone as far as they wanted to go. When I heard the news I was distraught.”

Coulson concluded: “If I had stayed with them it could have been me.”

Jonathan Gibson, who also quit the band to study engineering at Birmingham University, also went on to praise Leonard, stating: “I knew I was in the presence of genius. Kris was the driving force, he said he never wanted to work in a shop stacking shelves.”

In wake of the accident, Viola Beach are on course to make their Official Singles Chart Top 40 debut with single ‘Swings & Waterslides’.

The likes of Stone Roses and Liam Gallagher have all backed a campaign to get the four-piece to Number One.

The group’s record label Communion have confirmed that the proceeds from sale of singles will go to the families of the band and their manager.