Walter "Junie" Morrison (1954 - 2017)

  • "R.P.I my Brother and sleep with the Angels"
    - Ernest Beard
  • "Wow, this is the man behind George Clinton, Ohio Players..."
    - Rhonda Scott
  • "It is with heart felt condolences, that as I was going..."
  • "Our prayers are with the family. He will be missed."

Walter Morrison (Westbound Records) Walter Morrison in the R&B Memorials Photo Gallery Enlarged Photo
Walter "Junie" Morrison, a talented keyboardist and producer who performed with George Clinton's Parliament-Funkadelic as well as the Ohio Players, has died, according to multiple news sources. Morrison was 62.

Morrison, who was born in 1954, also performed with the British group Soul II Soul, which had a hit with the 1989 single "Back to Life (However Do You Want Me)."

Morrison's death was announced by Dam-Funk, who said Morrison's daughter, Akasha, shared the news. Morrison appeared on Dam-Funk's 2015 album, "Invite the Light," which opened with the song "Junie's Transmission."

"We spoke often. Walter "Junie" Morrison's daughter Akasha called me with the news of his passing. His passing was private, just like he was," Dam-Funk tweeted.

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According to Morrison's official website, the Dayton, Ohio, native was exposed to music at an early age at his church, playing the piano "as early as 5 years of age."

As a teenager, Morrison became a multi-instrumentalist, adding the guitar, drums and "certain types of brass instruments," his website bio states.

After graduating high school, Morrison became a founding member of the funk band Ohio Players in the early 1970s. He played keyboards on their albums "Pain," "Pleasure," and "Ecstacy." He helped write and arrange the Ohio Players' 1973 hit single, "Funky Worm."

After leaving the group, Morrison put out solo albums including "When We Do" (1975), "Bread Alone" (1980), "Evacuate Your Seats" (1984), and "When the City" (2004).

In 1977, Morrison became the musical director for George Clinton's Parliament-Funkadelic -- P-Funk for short -- which put out the critically acclaimed album "One Nation Under a Groove." A single from the album, "(Not Just) Knee Deep" became a No. 1 hit on the U.S. rhythm and blues chart in 1979.

Morrison was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997 along with Clinton, fellow P-Funk keyboardist Bernie Worrell, and more than a dozen other P-Funk members. Worrell died last year.

Many musicians took to social media this week to share their condolences, including the legendary bassist Bootsy Collins.

"Okay enough is enough, somebody tell me this ain't so. In case it is we have lost another frequency in the...," Collins tweeted Feb. 16, 2017.

The Roots bandleader Questlove tweeted, "The Great Junie Morrison. So inspirational. All the #OhioPlayers westbound era funk that birthed…"

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