Lester Errol Brown[2] MBE (12 November 1943[3][4][5] – 6 May 2015) was a British-Jamaican singer and songwriter, best known as the frontman of the soul and funk band Hot Chocolate. In 2004, Brown received the Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music.[6]

Errol Brown
MBE
Brown in 1998
Brown in 1998
Background information
Birth nameLester Errol Brown
Born12 November 1943
Kingston, Jamaica
Died6 May 2015(2015-05-06) (aged 71)
The Bahamas
Genres
Occupation(s)
Instrument(s)Vocals
Years active1968–2015
Labels
Formerly ofHot Chocolate
Websiteerrolbrown.com

Career edit

Brown was born in Kingston, Jamaica, but moved to the UK when he was 11 years old.[7] His break in music came in 1969 when he recorded a version of John Lennon's "Give Peace a Chance" with a band called "Hot Chocolate Band". Unable to change the lyrics without Lennon's permission, he sent a copy to his record label, Apple, and the song was released with Lennon's approval.[8]

The Hot Chocolate albums were produced by Mickie Most and recorded at the Rak Records studio. Brown left the group in 1985 to take a hiatus from music.[9][10] He soon went on to have a solo career, achieving success in the clubs with the 1987 single "Body Rocking", produced by Richard James Burgess.[11]

He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1997 when he was surprised by Michael Aspel on his birthday.[citation needed]

Brown was a supporter of the Conservative Party and performed at a party conference in the 1980s.[12] In 1981, he performed at the wedding reception of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer, at Buckingham Palace.[13]

Brown owned National Hunt horses, including Gainsay.[14]

Recognition edit

In 2003, Queen Elizabeth II named Brown a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for "services to popular music for the United Kingdom".[15][16] In 2004, he received an Ivor Novello Award for outstanding contributions to British music.[12]

Death edit

Brown died from liver cancer at his home in the Bahamas on 6 May 2015. He was survived by his wife Ginette and his two daughters, Colette and Leonie.[16][17]

Discography edit

Albums edit

  • 1989: That's How Love Is – WEA 243 925
  • 1992: Secret Rendezvous – East West 4509-90688
  • 1996: Love In This – East West 0630-15260
  • 2001: Still Sexy — The Album – Universal Music TV 138162 (UK No.44)[18]

Solo singles edit

  • 1987: "Personal Touch" – WEA YZ 130 (UK No. 25)[19]
  • 1987: "Body Rocking" – WEA YZ 162 (UK No. 51)[19]
  • 1988: "Maya" – WEA YZ 313
  • 1989: "Love Goes Up and Down" (UK No. 89)[19]
  • 1990: "Send a Prayer (To Heaven)" (UK No. 83)[19]
  • 1992: "This Time It's Forever" – East West 4509-90064 (Germany No. 26)
  • 1992: "Secret Rendezvous" – East West 4509-90913
  • 1993: "Emmalene (That's No Lie)" – East West 4509-92322
  • 1996: "Ain't No Love in This" – East West 0630-13951
  • 1996: "Change the People's Hearts" – East West 0630-16898
  • 1998: "It Started with a Kiss"1 – EMI CDHOT 101 (UK No. 18)[19]
  • 2001: "Still Sexy (Yes U Are)" – Universal 158940 (UK No. 85)[19]
  • 2001: "Heaven's in the Back Seat of My Cadillac"
  • 2002: "I Love You Everyday" – Universal 0157592

1Credited to Hot Chocolate featuring Errol Brown [20][18]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Biography by Ron Wynn". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
  2. ^ "RIP Errol Brown of Hot Chocolate". Rhino Entertainment. 6 May 2015. Retrieved 15 September 2022.
  3. ^ Slotnik, Daniel E. (6 May 2015). "Errol Brown, 'You Sexy Thing' Singer, Dies at 71". The New York Times. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  4. ^ Betts, Graham (2006). Complete UK hit singles 1952–2006. London: Collins. p. 119. ISBN 9780007200771.
  5. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). London: Omnibus Press. p. 162. ISBN 9780857125958.
  6. ^ "The Ivors 2004". The Ivors. Archived from the original on 12 March 2017. Retrieved 28 December 2017.
  7. ^ Sweeting, Adam. "Errol Brown obituary". The Guardian. Meanwhile, his mother had moved to London, and worked for the post office and as a typist until she could afford a mortgage on a house. She rented out rooms to pay off the debt. She brought Errol to Britain to join her when he was 11.
  8. ^ "Errol Brown". Thebiographychannel.co.uk. Archived from the original on 7 January 2014. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
  9. ^ Grow, Kory (6 May 2015). "Hot Chocolate Singer Errol Brown Dead at 71". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  10. ^ Sweeting (7 May 2015). "Errol Brown obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  11. ^ Frost, Caroline (6 May 2015). "Errol Brown Dead: Hot Chocolate Frontman Dies Aged 71 After Suffering From Liver Cancer". Huffington Post. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  12. ^ a b "Hot Chocolate singer Errol Brown dies, aged 71". The Guardian. 6 May 2015. Retrieved 6 May 2015.
  13. ^ "ERROL BROWN: A Fondent Farewell". Bluesandsoul.com. Retrieved 6 May 2015.
  14. ^ "Gainsay | Record By Race Type". Racing Post. 2 June 2011. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  15. ^ "Solo Singles and Albums by Errol Brown". ErrolBrown.com. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  16. ^ a b "Hot Chocolate singer Errol Brown dies". BBC News. 6 May 2015. Retrieved 6 May 2015.
  17. ^ "Hot Chocolate Singer Errol Brown Dies". Sky News. Retrieved 6 May 2015.
  18. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 81. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  19. ^ a b c d e f "Errol Brown". Officialcharts.com. Retrieved 6 May 2015.
  20. ^ "ERROL BROWN". Theofficialcharts.com. Retrieved 6 May 2015.

External links edit