Homeless and ill house music legend Colonel Abrams dies at 67

Colonel Abrams (Cover artwork of the single "Trapped" by Colonel Abrams- /AMI. Machat)
Colonel Abrams (Cover artwork of the single “Trapped” by Colonel Abrams- /AMI. Machat)

Former ’80s singer and one of the pioneers of house music, Colonel Abrams died on Thanksgiving day at the age of 67. During the height of his career on the now- defunct MCA record label, he had several hits that included “Trapped,” “How Soon We Forget” and “Not Gonna Let.”

He was born in born in Detroit on May 25, 1949, and his family moved to New York City when he was young. According to family, he had a musical gift and was soon playing guitar and piano. As a teen, he was a member of several bands and went on to play with the band Heavy Impact. He also formed a group called Conservative Manor, 94 East, which featured Prince on lead guitar.

In 1985, he signed with AMI. Machat and later released his hit “Trapped,” which reached the top five in the UK Singles Chart and topped the US Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart that year. By spring 1987, it was estimated that “Trapped” had sold five million copies worldwide. He went on to record other hits that have been remixed and sampled many times and still remains a favorite artist among house music DJs.

Abrams released new work in 2007 and saw appearances on oldies tours. In recent years he was in poor health due to diabetes and in financial ruin. According to friends, he had no permanent place to live and only limited financial resources. A crowd funding campaign was launched to help him record a new record. However, his health became so bad the campaign instead turned into a plea for his medical care and housing. Fans of his music have started posting videos of his music and condolences for his death. This year 2016 has seen the deaths of many in the music world, most notably Prince.

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