Grammy winner Ronald “Khalis” Bell, a co-founder, singer and producer of the famous group Kool & the Gang is dead.
According to publicist, Sujata Murthy, Bell died at his home in the U.S. Virgin Islands Wednesday morning with his wife by his side.
The cause of death has not been released.
Bell is survived by 10 children. Murthy said Bell’s funeral service will be private.
Kool & the Gang grew from jazz roots in the 1960s to become one of the major groups of the 1970s, blending jazz, funk, R&B and pop. After a brief downturn, the group enjoyed a return to stardom in the ’80s.
Bell started the group with his brother Robert “Kool” Bell along with neighborhood friends Dennis “D.T.” Thomas, Robert “Spike” Mickens, Charles Smith, George Brown and Ricky West.
Kool & the Gang won a Grammy in 1978 for their work on the soundtrack for “Saturday Night Fever.” The group was honoured with a BET Soul Train Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014 and inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame four years later.