Dennis “Dee Tee” Thomas, a founding member of the lengthy-functioning soul-funk band Kool & the Gang recognised for this kind of hits as Celebration and Get Down On It, has died. He was 70.
He died peacefully in his rest Saturday in New Jersey, exactly where he was a resident of Montclair, N.J., in accordance to a assertion from his consultant.
Thomas was the alto sax player, flutist and percussionist. He served as master of ceremonies at the band’s demonstrates. His last look with the team was at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles on July 4.
Born Feb. nine, 1951, in Orlando, Fla., Thomas was recognised for his prologue on the band’s 1971 hit, Who’s Gonna Just take the Fat. Known for his hip dresses and hats, he was also the group’s wardrobe stylist. In the early times, he served as their “finances hawk,” carrying their earnings in a paper bag stuffed into the bell of his horn, the assertion claimed.
A long time with the Gang
In 1964, seven teen friends made the group’s distinctive bland of jazz, soul and funk, at very first calling themselves the Jazziacs. They went through many iterations right before settling on Kool & the Gang in 1969. The group’s other founders are brothers Ronald and Robert Bell, and Spike Mickens, Ricky Westfield, George Brown and Charles Smith.
Ronald Bell died Sept. nine, 2020, at house in the U.S. Virgin Islands at age sixty eight.
The band has earned two Grammy Awards and seven American Tunes Awards. They had been honoured in 2014 with a Soul Practice Life span Achievement Award. Their new music is greatly sampled and featured on movie soundtracks, which includes people for Rocky, Saturday Night Fever and Pulp Fiction.
Amongst people Thomas is survived by are his wife, Phynjuar Saunders Thomas, daughter Tuesday Rankin and sons David Thomas and Devin Thomas.