The world of music and pop culture has bid farewell to George “Funky” Brown of the Kool & The Gang. On Thursday, November 16, the world-renowned drummer reportedly passed away at 74 years old in California after a battle with lung cancer.
“In loving memory of our dear brother, co-founder and the funkiest drummer the world has ever seen. His beautiful soul is now at rest. We love you, George. Thank you for giving us the sound of happiness,” a statement from the band’s Instagram account reads.
Brown, a Jersey City, New Jersey native, helped co-found Kool & The Gang back in 1964. Nearly six decades later, the iconic band has piled up two Grammy Awards, seven American Music Awards, a Soul Train Legend Award and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Along the way, they sold more than 70 million albums worldwide and earned spots in the Songwriters Hall of Fame for three members, including Brown.
Brown is survived by his wife and their five children. After his passing, his family has asked that donations be made in his honor to the Lung Cancer Society of America.