Thom Bell, who contributed to the development of the soul music genre known as “The Sound of Philadelphia” in the 1960s and 1970s, passed away on Thursday in Bellingham, Washington. No cause of death was disclosed for the 79-year-old man.
Cause Of Death
Michael Silver, his attorney, confirmed his death. The spokesperson for Thom Bell informed the media on Friday that Bell had passed away at his Bellingham, Washington residence. The reason of death was not disclosed.
Many Legendary Artists Pays Tribute To Thom Bell
Bell’s passing was reported on Thursday afternoon by TV personality and music critic Dyanna Williams. She posted and pays tribute to Bell on Instagram.
“Beloved songwriter arranger, producer Thomas aka Randolph Bell aka Thom Bell, co-architect of The Sound of Philadelphia with Gamble & Huff. Soundtrack to our lives music The Delfonics The Stylistics The Spinners Deniece Williams Dionne Warwick Johnny Mathis has transitioned.”
Producer Nile Rogers also posted to Twitter on Bell’s death.
“#RIPThomBell He is one of the greatest writers and producers of all time. My condolences go out to his family and friends. He was the architect of the relationship between #BernardEdwards & me as we were the band for the group New York City (I’m Doing Fine Now) a Thom Bell smash.”
Hip-hop star DJ Premier also paid tribute, and wrote a beautiful message.
“One of the reasons why I wanted to have an enormous discography of classics that are timeless”.
Thom Bell And His Musical Journey
When Thom was a teenager, he began singing with Kenny Gamble, Leon Huff, and Daryl Hall (of Hall & Oates fame). Later, in 1967, he met a group called The Delfonics and worked with them to create two singles for their subsidiary label, Moonglow.
Bell has loved singing and writing songs since he was a young child. According to the BBC, Bell was raised in West Philadelphia with nine brothers and sisters after being born in Jamaica in 1943. Bell studied classical piano as a child and aspired to become a conductor. His parents were both musicians.
Thom Has Worked With Many A-listers
Later, Thom worked with Teddy Pendergrass, Lou Rawls, Little Anthony, Dionne Warwick, and The Imperials, Dusty Springfield, David Byrne, Fatboy Slim, and Joss Stone. He also collaborated with Elton John, Teddy Pendergrass, Deniece Williams, and Johnny Mathis.
Thom Bell With Grammy
Bell also received the first-ever Grammy Award for producer of the year in 1975, according to the BBC, and he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2006. Additionally, Thom was awarded a star on the Philadelphia Music Alliance Walk of Fame in 1993.
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