Ray Collins Dies, Singer For Mothers Of Invention Was 76

    December 28, 2012
    Zach Walton
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Ray Collins, one of the founding members of Mothers of Invention with Frank Zappa, died on Monday. The famous rock musician was 76.

Before starting his musical career with Zappa, Collins got his start doing backup vocals on doo-wop records in the Los Angeles area during the 1950s and 60s. It wasn’t until 1964 that he joined up with Jimmy Carl Black, Roy Estrada and Frank Zapp to form The Soul Giants. The band would later become known as Mothers of Invention.

Collins was the lead vocalist on the band’s early albums, including Freak Out!, Absolutely Free and Cruising With Ruben & The Jets. Collins quit the band soon after as he clashed with Zappa over creative differences. He did contribute to a few Zappa projects afterwards throughout the 70s though. Later in life, Collins supported himself through social security and songwriting royalties.

The singer was admitted to the Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center on Dec. 18 for cardiac arrest. He died on Monday, December 24.

[h/t: Today]

  • eatingdogfood

    Never Heard Of Him !!!

  • Jim Lally

    Never heard of him,two.

  • Jim Lally

    Never Heard Of Him,II.

  • Jay

    To those never heard of Ray Collins: You’re musical taste and knowledge need a severe overhaul.

  • John Higgins

    One of the greatest white singers ever. For those with open ears and an open mind to go with it, try listening to Rueben and The Jets by The Mothers. Ray is lead singer with an effortless tone, beautiful harmony, superb range