Jimmy Ellis, lead singer of the Trammps, dies at 74

This is another one that hurts. Jimmy Ellis, one of the great voices of the disco era and the expressive lead singer of the Trammps, has died in a nursing home in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Ellis was the scorching voice behind 70s hits like "Disco Inferno," "That's Where the Happy People Go" and "Zing Went the Strings of My Heart." 

This is another one that hurts. Jimmy Ellis, one of the great voices of the disco era and the expressive lead singer of the Trammps, has died in a nursing home in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Ellis was the scorching voice behind 70s hits like "Disco Inferno," "That's Where the Happy People Go" and "Zing Went the Strings of My Heart." 

I had the pleasure of talking a few years ago to Ellis at his home in South Carolina, and he was as humble and likeable as he was talented. He had a uniquely powerful voice that could dominate just about any song the Trammps attempted, bringing just enough church to give even straight up dance songs a depth beyond the beat. No one else could have delivered "Disco Inferno" the way that Jimmy did, making it one of the seminal songs of the disco era. And hearing him rip up "(I Feel Like I've Been Living On The) Dark Side of the Moon" and "Zing" was like going to school. He will be missed by me and by music fans everywhere.

by Chris Rizik


The Trammps biographyOne of the most underrated soul/dance groups of the 70s, the Trammps remain notable in many circles for a single song, 1977's seminal disco anthem, "Disco Inferno."  However, as pioneers in the development of Disco from the foundation of early 70s Soul music, the Trammps' legacy and influence extend well beyond the seven minutes of that one recording.... Read full biography

 

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