TORONTO (CelebrityAccess) – Canadian singer/songwriter and musician Eric Mercury passed away Monday due to what was confirmed to be pancreatic cancer. He was 78.
Mercury got his start in Canada, was born into a family of musicians, and began performing when he was hardly old enough to attend public school. His family performed as a musical group, appearing at local churches, schools, and community events. It gave him a chance to polish his skills before moving to New York in the late 60s to pursue a solo career. During this time, he performed in the band The Pharaohs and Eric Mercury and the Soul Searchers.
He released his debut solo album, Electric Black Man in 1969. Many in the industry considered it to be a milestone 60s recording. During his time as a performing artist, he released Funky Sounds Nurtured in the Fertile Soil of Memphis that Smell of Rock (1972), Love Is Taking Over (1973), Eric Mercury (1975), and Gimme a Call Somtime (1981).
He eventually moved on to work behind the scenes in the industry, writing and producing for other artists such as Robert Flack and Donny Hathaway. He also appeared in the stage production of Jesus Christ Superstar and had a film role as Tyrone Blackwood in American Hot Wax.
After relocating from New York to Los Angeles and eventually, Chicago, Mercury migrated back to his hometown of Toronto where he was the Music Director for SBReid Productions. Please see below for the many Facebook tributes.