KOOL & THE GANG: farewell to George “Funky” Brown, drummer and founder of the gang

Music news

Kool & The Gand loses another of its historic members. George “Funky” Brown, drummer, keyboardist and co-founder of the band died yesterday (November 16).

Brown died at Long Beach Memorial Hospital from cancer and was 74 years old.

Brown co-founded Kool & the Gang in 1964, when they began playing jazz clubs in New Jersey. They exploded in 1973, honing their ever-evolving fusion of jazz, soul, funk, rock and pop on the album Wild and Peaceful.

Brown went on to co-write hits including “Ladies Night,” “Celebration” and “Cherish.” Brown and the band won a Grammy Award in 1979. They were inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame in 2015 and the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2018.

By 2021 he was also dead Dennis “Dee Tee” Thomas another of the historic founders of Kool & the Gang.

Dennis was among the main members of the group together with the two brothers Robert Bell (known as “Kool”) and Ronald Bell, also a saxophonist who passed away last year.

The band remembered him in a post published on social media

Let’s remember him with a playlist dedicated to their best songs:



ph. x official of the band


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Christopher Johnson

Christopher Johnson is a dedicated writer and key contributor to the WECB website, Emerson College's student-run radio station. Passionate about music, radio communication, and journalism, Christopher pursues his craft with a blend of meticulous research and creative flair. His writings on the site cover an array of subjects, from music reviews and artist interviews to event updates and industry news. As an active member of the Emerson College community, Christopher is not only a writer but also an advocate for student involvement, using his work to foster increased engagement and enthusiasm within the school's radio and broadcasting culture. Through his consistent and high-quality outputs, Christopher Johnson helps shape the voice and identity of WECB, truly embodying its motto of being an inclusive, diverse, and enthusiastic music community.