Frank Farian, Boney M. and Milli Vanilli Founder, Dead at 82

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Frank Farian

Frank Farian, the German singer, songwriter and record producer who founded hit music groups Boney M. and Milli Vanilli, has died. He was 82.

The news of Farian's death was confirmed by a spokesperson for the family, Philip Kallrath of Allendorf Media, who announced that the hitmaker died on Tuesday, Jan. 23, while at his home in Miami, Fla, per the New York Times.

A cause of death has not been disclosed at this time, though the family confirmed to PEOPLE that Farian passed away "peacefully."

Prior to his death, Farian was known for his undeniable influence in the music industry, serving as the creator behind the popular disco group Boney M. With Farian acting as the group's primary songwriter, Boney M. would go on to release a string of hit songs throughout the '70s, including "Rasputin," "Daddy Cool" and "Brown Girl in the Ring."

Following the news of Farian's death on Tuesday, Boney M. singer Liz Mitchell spoke out to commemorate the late musician, writing in a statement obtained by Euro News, "Our work was truly blessed and so enjoyed by people around the world who had the privilege to hear it down the years."

"The testimonies come from the hearts of those who heard it and I am so grateful to the God of music that allowed our coming together, to create and present to the world the music of Boney M.,” she continued. "We shared and united under a star which rose above and beyond what we ever dared to expect. I say well done to the work that we did."

"Rest in peace Frank," her statement concluded.

Farian was also known for founding the R&B group Milli Vanilli during the '80s. The group would go on to drop hits like "Girl You Know It's True," "Blame It on the Rain" and "Baby Don't Forget My Number."

"My condolences to his family," singer for the group Fab Morvan said in a statement to the Guardian. "His music will live on. We can never deny the happiness and joy it brought into this world."

Throughout his life, Farian also worked with other notable names in the music industry, including Stevie Wonder and Meat Loaf. The German record producer—who also once had his own solo music career—is believed to have sold 800 million records across the globe.

In 2022, Farian revealed to German newspaper Bild that he underwent a life-saving surgical procedure for a heart valve replacement, during which a pig heart valve was inserted into his chest. However, it is unclear if his previous heart condition contributed to his death.

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