Billy Paul, the jazz and soul singer best known for his legendary hit "Me and Mrs. Jones," died on Sunday, April 24.
The musician, whose career spanned more than 60 years, died at his home in Blackwood, New Jersey. His producers, Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, confirmed his passing to Us Weekly in a statement. He was 80 years old.
"We are very saddened to learn of the sudden death of our good friend and Philadelphia International Records recording artist Billy Paul," the statement read. "From the time we saw Billy performing live, and then signing him to our label, we immediately realized that we had discovered and launched one the most unique voices in the music industry," it continued.
"Our proudest moment with Billy was the recording of the salacious smash, ‘Me and Mrs. Jones.’ In our view, it is one of the greatest love songs ever recorded. Billy will forever have a special place in music history.”
The No. 1 hit song won Paul a Grammy in 1973 for best male rhythm 'n' blues performance. The jazz star continued to perform live until he fell ill, with one of his favorite concert pieces being a cover of Prince's "Purple Rain."
A statement on his website says the singer died of a "serious medical condition." His comanager, Beverly Gay, told the Associated Press that he had been recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
Paul is survived by his wife, Blanche Williams, and their two children.
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