Passings: Colonel Abrams (1949 - 2016)

by VVN Music

Colonel Abrams, who had a number of big R&B and Dance hits during the 80's, died on Friday at the age of 67. Reports say that he had suffered for years from diabetes and had been homeless for some time.

Abrams was born in the East Village of Manhattan in 1949 and began playing both guitar and piano at an early age. Early in his career, he played in a number of different bands including Heavy Impact, Conservative Manor and 94 East which included Prince on guitar.

At the turn of the 70's/80's, Abrams began to strike out on his own and became known in the New York underground scene. In 1984, he had his first minor hit with Leave the Message Behind the Door (1984 / #73 R&B) but it was his next single, Trapped, that put him on the musical map. The song topped the Dance chart, went to number 3 in the U.K. and 20 on the U.S. R&B Singles.  His self-titled debut album also topped the R&B charts for two weeks.

Abrams continued to have hits into the mid-90's including I'm Not Gonna Let You (Get the Best of Me) (1986 / #1 Dance / #7 R&B / #24 U.K.), Colonel Abrams (1986 / #1 Dance), How Soon We Forget (1987 / #1 Dance / #6 R&B / #75 U.K.) and So Confused (1994 / #15 Dance).

Going into the 2000's, Abrams started his own label, releasing a series of singles but none were able to crack the U.S. charts.

By 2015, it was reported that Abrams was homeless and a crowdfunding campaign was started so that he could get medical help with his diabetes.

New York business leader Tony Herbert wrote on Facebook:

Just got word that Colonel Abrams has past away on Thanksgiving, one year to the date that I along with Don Welch, Barbara Tucker, Julie Black, Derek Jenkins, Ralph McDaniels, Marshall Jefferson, Larkie RUcker, Bea Montgomery,Skip Dillard, WBLS and a host of his biggest fans fought to get him to let us help him....Now he is at peace and our condolences go out to his family, and fans world wide, he is no longer suffering or Trapped!!!.......Tony Tune Herbert

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