Ronald ‘Khalis’ Bell, Co-Founder & Singer in Kool & The Gang Dies, Aged 68

Ronald Bell, co-founder and singer in Kool & The Gang has died. Aged 68, Bell died at his home in the Virgin Islands in the United States on Wednesday morning. Bell’s publicist, Sujata Murthy says he died with his wife by his side, the cause has not been disclosed.

Ronald Bell was a singer, saxophonist, and songwriter in the Kool & The Gang group. The group came from jazz roots originally but entered the 1970s with a blend of jazz, RnB, and funk. They were responsible for bops like ‘Celebration’, ‘Get Down On It’, and ‘Ladies Night’.

Founding the group with his brother, Ronald and Robert Bell, and their friends Dennis Thomas, Robert Mickens, Charles Smith, George Brown, and Ricky West formed Kool & The Gang. They had a brief break before returning to the public eye in the ’80s.

Ronald Bell wrote and composed some of Kool & The Gangs biggest bangers like ‘Celebration’, ‘Cherish’, ‘Jungle Boogie’ and ‘Summer Madness’. While the group took home a Grammy in 1978 for their work on Saturday Night Fever’s soundtrack.

Bell was still chipping away at a few projects. He was working on a few collaborations, a solo project called Kool Baby Brotha Band, and he had plans of creating a series called Kool TV, a bunch of animated shorts about the group’s childhoods and careers.

He’s survived by 10 children and his service will remain private.

Listen to ‘Celebration’ below.


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