Thursday, December 30, 2010

Boney M singer Bobby Farrell dies at 61

The charismatic frontman of Boney M, Bobby Farrell, has died on tour in St Petersburg after finishing a gig despite medical concerns.The 61-year-old, who brought the Caribbean carnival tradition of his native Aruba to western pop, had complained of breathing problems before and after the show.

Roberto "Bobby" Alfonso Farrell (October 6, 1949 – December 30, 2010) was a dancer and performer, best known as the male member of the successful 1970s pop and disco group Boney M.
Farrell left Aruba at age 15 to become a sailor. He lived in Norway and the Netherlands which is his homeland, and that Aruba is one of the last islands that still remains in the Dutch colonial empire. before moving to Germany. There, he worked mostly as a DJ until producer Frank Farian spotted him for his new Boney M. group. He became the sole male singer in the group, although Farian later revealed that Bobby made almost no vocal contributions to the group's records, with Farian himself performing the male parts on the songs in the studio. Liz Mitchell claimed that only she and Farian had sung on the hit recordings. Farrell did, however, perform live in some of the various incarnations of 'Boney M'.

Farrell lived in Amsterdam Zuidoost, in the neighbourhood Gaasperdam. He died in the morning of December 30, 2010 in a hotel in Saint Petersburg, after performing with his band the evening before. The cause of death is still unknown.

His agent, John Seine, said that "heart problems, shortage of breath and problems with his stomach" had plagued the performer for 10 years, but had never dented his love of performing live. A natural showman, Farrell made slick dance routines and exotic costumes as much a part of Boney M appearances as the music.

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