Walter “Junie” Morrison, the legendary funk musician known for his work with the Ohio Players and Parliament-Funkadelic, has died, OkayPlayer reports. His daughter Akasha Morrison announced the news on his Facebook page. He was 62.
Morrison joined the Ohio Players as a producer, writer, keyboardist, and vocalist in the early 1970s. He worked on their albums Pain, Pleasure, and Ecstasy, and he arranged and co-wrote their 1973 hit “Funky Worm,” the song that basically gave rise to the entire G-Funk sound in the ’90s. After leaving the band in 1974, he released three solo albums before becoming the musical director for George Clinton’s Parliament-Funkadelic.
He released several more solo albums in the ’80s and produced records for other atists including Soul II Soul. In 1997, he was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame as part of P-Funk. His last solo album, When The City, came out in 2004, and he recently served as the inspiration for Solange’s A Seat At The Table track “Junie.”
1 of my heroes & 'my' King of #FUNK.
Founding member of Ohio Players
Co-creator of P-Funk's "Knee Deep" pic.twitter.com/6Q1WSZ6ZyT
— Focused⚡️DāM-FunK (@DaMFunK) February 16, 2017
The Great Junie Morrison. So inspirational. All the #OhioPlayers westbound era funk that birthed #Voodoo & #BlackMessiah: #Junie. Those adlibs on Hov's "#BrooklynsFinest & #Tribe's #ScenarioRemix is Junie. All the Warner Era #Funkadelic songwriting wizzardry #OneNationUnderAGroove & #UncleJamWantsYou (he co-wrote #NotJustKneeDeep) even #Parliament's #MotorBootyAffair & #Gloryhallastoopid. His ideas birthed and ushered in the G-Funk era (all that synthy #FunkyWorm synth yall associate w gangsta rap/Dre's sound? That's #JunieMorrison. Even his #SuzieThundertussy in its tales of "Lost Angeles" were the backdrop on Ye's bright light for #TLOP's #NoMorePartiesInLA. Solange even gave him props on #Junie ("jump on it" for those that call it the "Jump on it song Dre3000 sings on)—this man was an uncelebrated unsung unchampioned whose ideas we just took and took and took. I regret so much not having a "proper" conversation about his journey. His songwriting. His technology innovations. Man. This STINGS. Rip #Junie.
RIP the unheralded JUNIE MORRISON https://t.co/R61DyeKPvS
— QTip (@QtipTheAbstract) February 16, 2017