Boney M creator Frank Farian passed away


German music producer Frank Farian, the mastermind behind Boney M and Milli Vanilli, has died at the age of 82, his family said on Tuesday.

The hitmaker, who over the decades sold more than 800 million records in collaboration with various artists, died at his home in Miami.

Farian, born Franz Reuther, began his career as a solo musician. He achieved a number one hit in 1976 in West Germany with his version of the country hit “Rocky”.

Farian then achieved international success with the disco group Boney M. He came up with the name and put the group together. With hits such as “Rivers of Babylon”, “Daddy Cool” and “Rasputin”, the group eventually sold 150 million records.

Farian caused a scandal with Milli Vanilli, an R&B group put together by the producer with lip-syncing dancers Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus. The pair received a Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1990, but the award was withdrawn when it was revealed that they were not performing their own songs. The story was told in the recent movie Girl You Know It’s True.

Over his career, Farian has also worked with musicians such as Stevie Wonder, Meat Loaf and Terence Trent D’Arby.