Calvin Simon, who was a founding member of Parliament–Funkadelic and a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member, has died. He was 79.
“We lost another Original member of Parliament/Funkadelic,” Bootsy Collins wrote on Instagram on Friday (Jan. 7), confirming Simon’s death. “A friend, bandmate & a cool classic guy, Mr. Calvin Simon was a former member of Parliament/Funkadelic. He’s in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, inducted in 1997 with fifteen members of P-Funk! R.I.P Bootsy baby!!!”
Simon’s cause of death has not been reported.
Born in 1942 in West Virginia, where he sang with his church choir, Simon relocated to New Jersey with his family as a teen.
He worked as a barber, and by the late 1950s, Simon joined the group originally known as the Parliaments, first formed as a doo-wop quintet with fellow barbers George Clinton and Grady Thomas and customers Ray Davis and Fuzzy Haskins.
Simon, who was drafted in 1967 to serve in Vietnam, went on to sing with the group that later became known as Parliament-Funkadelic. He eventually parted ways with the group due to financial disputes.
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SOURCE: Billboard, Ashley Iasimone