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Thom Bell, ‘Sound of Philadelphia’ Producer Dies at 79, Cause of Death Explored

The Grammy-winning producer Thom Bell is no longer with us. The key architect of Soul Music’s Sound of Philadelphia passed away at the age of 79 on December 22, 2022, Thursday.

The sad news of Thom Bell’s passing who was a producer, composer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist was confirmed by his lawyer Michael Silver. Read on to know the reason behind the death of the talented artist.

How did Thom Bell die?

Thom Bell, best known as one of the creators of Philadelphia soul in the 1970s has left for the heavenly abode. The talented artist passed away at the age of 79 at his home in Bellingham, Washington.

According to a report by Deadline, Thom Bell’s lawyer Michael Silver announced the sad news of his death. As of right now, the actual reason behind the death of Thom Bell is not known.

Here’s everything you need to know about Thom Bell (early life, career, and more)

Thom Bell was born on January 26, 1943, in Kingston, Jamaica. His full name was Thomas Randolph Bell. He was an American record producer, arranger, and songwriter by profession.

When Thom was a child, his family moved to Philadelphia. Back in the day, his mom was a pianist and his father played accordion and Hawaiian lap steel guitar. He got his very first drum kit at the young age of 4 and he studied classical piano.

Thom met Kenny Gamble for the first time at his sister’s home, and soon after, the two of them began working together in a group called Kenny & the Romeos. When Bell bid adieu to the group, he was replaced on piano by Leon Huff.

At that point in time, Bell worked as a staff writer and touring conductor for Chubby Checker, and he bagged his first production job for the Delfonics in the year 1968. He lend a helping hand in shaping their songs like “La La Means I Love You” and “Didn’t I Blow Your Mind.”

That marked the beginning of something special. Soon after, he did the string arrangement for “Back Stabbers,” the 1976 smashing hit single for the O’Jays on Gamble and Huff’s Philadelphia International Records label.

Thom Bell worked with many famous musicians

Later on, down the lane, Thom worked with Dionne Warwick, Teddy Pendergrass, Lou Rawls, Little Anthony and The Imperials, Dusty Springfield, David Byrne, Joss Stone, and Fatboy Slim. He also collaborated with many top musicians such as Elton John, Teddy Pendergrass, Deniece Williams, and Johnny Mathis.

In the year 1975, Thom bagged a Grammy award in the category of “Best Producer of the Year.” In 1993, he was honored with a star on the Philadelphia Music Alliance’s Walk of Fame. In June 2006, he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Thom Bell is survived by his wife, Vanessa, and his kids, Royal, Troy, Tia, Mark, Cybell, and Christopher. Up until now, no memorial plans have been announced.

Sending love, light, and strength to the friends and family of Thom Bell during this tough time. Don’t forget to stay tuned with us for the latest updates from the world of entertainment.

Meenal Mehta
Hi, I am Meenal. I'm a travel enthusiast, a movie buff and a cricket fan all wrapped in one. I love to capture moments through my words. Writing is my happy space, it has been a great way of putting all my thoughts out and feel liberated.


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