Jim Diamond, Singer of '80s Hit 'I Should Have Known Better', Dies at 64

“I Should Have Known Better” singer Jim Diamond died in his sleep last Thursday, according to a statement from his family. (photo: Bang Showbiz)

Jim Diamond, the British singer who fronted the electro-pop band PhD and landed an international solo hit with the 1984 ballad “I Should Have Known Better”, has died at the age of 64.

Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Diamond relocated to London in his teens where he established the band Bandit and signed with Clive Davis’ Arista Records. With a move to L.A., Diamond was introduced to Earl Slick (guitarist on David Bowie’s “Young Americans”) and Carmine Appice from Rod Stewart’s band; the trio went on to write and record with producer Eddie Kramer (Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Kiss). On his return to the U.K., Diamond formed PhD with Tony Hymas and Simon Phillips from the Jeff Beck band. (Diamond’s name is the “D” in the trio’s title). PhD had a No. 3 U.K. hit with its first single, "I Won’t Let You Down" from 1982.

When PhD disbanded, Diamond signed with A&M and he enjoyed two top 10 solo hits in the U.K., led by “I Should Have Known Better” which topped the Official U.K. Chart for a week following its release. Two years later, this track “Hi Ho Silver” peaked at No. 8 in the U.K., according to the Official Charts Company.

“We are very sad to say that Jim passed away on Thursday (Oct. 8), unexpectedly, but peacefully in his sleep,” reads a statement issued by his family. “It was always such a pleasure to him that his voice touched so many people and brought them so much happiness. He absolutely loved reading all your messages and to hear how his music had touched you all. Put on your favorite song today and have a think about him, as as well as being an incredible singer, he was an incredible man and we feel so lucky to have had him in our lives.”

Diamond had remained active in recent years, releasing the album Souled and Healed in 2005, and in 2011 dropping City of Soul, an album of soul covers featuring Scottish musicians including Wet Wet Wet drummer Tommy Cunningham, Greg Kane of Hue & Cry, Garry John Kane from the Proclaimers on bass and Brian McFie, Marianne Faithfull’s guitarist.