Martells frontman suffers heart attack

A MUSICIAN from a popular Suffolk rock band has suffered a heart attack just weeks after performing a benefit concert for the air ambulance service.

A MUSICIAN from a popular Suffolk rock band has suffered a heart attack just weeks after performing a benefit concert for the air ambulance service.

Rod Frost, singer and guitarist for The Martells, is recovering in hospital only a month after his band generated more than �3,000 for the East Anglian Air Ambulance by playing to a packed crowd of 300 people.

They chose to support the service, which is funded by donations from the public, after it was on hand to assist fellow band member Sandy Sutherland, 63, when he suffered a heart attack three years ago.

Mr Frost, who is in his early 50s, fell ill last Friday and took a taxi to hospital, where he was told by doctors that he was seriously unwell.


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Speaking from his home in Kesgrave, Mr Sutherland said he had visited his bandmate in Ipswich Hospital every day since he suffered the attack.

He said: “He's turning the corner now. He unfortunately had pneumonia as well and that was affecting his breathing and was upping his heart rate so they had a lot of trouble getting him stabilised.

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“He's now off all the heart monitoring and all he's got left is a little bit of oxygen to help his breathing. Everything looks as though it's going slowly in the right direction.”

Mr Sutherland said he was hopeful that the band would be able to perform again together as a three-piece by the end of May, but it would be hard to hold back their energetic frontman.

He said: “Rod knows how to entertain - he's a great entertainer. It's a job to keep him down - all he wants top do is get out of bed and start playing.

“But it's a gradual process, there's no hurry. His health is far more important to us than rushing him back to play bookings.

“We would rather have him fit and healthy, even if it means us cancelling another two or three weeks of shows.”

Mr Sutherland had his heart attack three years ago during a round at Stoke by Nayland Golf Course.

The band chose to hold the benefit concert at Kesgrave Social Club last month to help support the service, raising �3,128.

Mr Sutherland said. “It is amazing to me something so important has to be supported by charity and donations.

“It should be Government funded, it saves lives everyday of the week and it is not a cheap service to run, and get them up in the air.

“I just hope someday someone makes enough noise to make the Government sit up and take notice.”

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