DUNKIRK, NY (CelebrityAccess) — Cory Wells, one of the three lead vocalists for the iconic rock band Three Dog Night, has died. He was 74.
In a post on the band's website, fellow bandmate Danny Hutton wrote: “It is with deep sadness and disbelief that I must report the passing of Cory Wells, my beloved band mate for over 45 years. Cory was an incredible singer – a great performer, he could sing anything.”
According to the post, Wells died unexpectedly in Dunkirk, NY on Tuesday. While a cause of death was not disclosed, the group had canceled several dates in September due to severe back pain that Wells had developed.
A native of Buffalo, Wells, born Emil Lewandowski, joined the Air Force after high school. After returning to Buffalo following his stint in the military, Wells formed several bands, including the Fidelitones and Satellites. In the early 60’s he became the singer of a band named the Vibratos that migrated to California and finally evolved into Cory Wells and the Enemys.
Wells met his future Three Dog Night bandmate Danny Hutton, who was working as a solo artist and a writer/producer at Hanna Barbera Records, at the Whisky A Go-Go, where the Enemys were playing as the house band. Both Hutton and Wells went on tour with Sonny and Cher and decided to form Three Dog Night following the tour.
Three Dog Night went on to have 21 consecutive Top 40 hits, working with songwriters including Randy Newman, Harry Nilsson, Elton John, Laura Nyro, Paul Williams and Hoyt Axton among many others. The band's hits included Momma Told Me Not To Come, Joy To The World, and Celebrate.
In addition to his passion for music, Wells was also an avid sportsman, competing in charity fishing tournaments around the country and filming several episodes on The American Sportman in New Zealand and the Amazon.
Wells is survived by Mary, his wife of 50 years; daughters Coryann Wells and Dawn Marie Cussins (William), and 5 grandchildren. – Staff Writers