American singer Mary Wilson has passed away at the age of 76. Her publicist tells Variety that. Wilson was best known as one of the founders of The Supremes.
According to publicist Jay Schwartz, Mary Wilson died suddenly. The cause of death has not yet been disclosed. Berry Gordy, founder of record label Motown Records, also made an official statement: “I was extremely shocked and saddened to learn that Mary Wilson, one of the most important members of the Motown family, had passed away. … I’ve always been very proud of Mary. She was a true star and worked hard for years to cement The Supremes legacy. She was very special to me. She was a pioneer and a diva. She will be sorely missed. ”
Two days before her death, Wilson posted another video to YouTube announcing that she was working on new solo music, including the album ‘Red Hot’. In addition, she wanted to celebrate the 60th anniversary of The Supremes this year.
Wilson founded The Supremes with Diana Ross and Florence Ballard. The girl group quickly became extremely popular. Between 1964 and 1969 they scored no less than 12 number 1 hits. The group is considered one of the most important music groups in the United States and Europe. The ladies also played an important role in the breakthrough of African American rhythm and blues music. They scored hits with songs like ‘Baby Love’, ‘Stop! In the Name of Love, You Can’t Hurry Love, You Keep Me Hangin ‘On and The Happening.
Later the group was also known as Diana Ross & The Supremes. When Mary Wilson left in 1977 to pursue a solo career, the group fell apart. Wilson also released two more solo albums and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.
The woman leaves behind two children and seven grandchildren.
Just two days before to her death, Wilson put up a video on her YouTube channel with the announcement that she was working with Universal Music on releasing solo material, including the unreleased album “Red Hot” she recorded in the 1970s with producer Gus Dudgeon. “Hopefully some of that will be out on my birthday, March 6,” she said in the video. She also promised upcoming interviews she had done about the Supremes’ experiences with segregation that she said were forthcoming in honor of Black History Month.