Billy Paul dead after cancer fight

Billy Paul
Billy Paul performing in 2006
(Image: © Getty)

Soul singer Billy Paul has died at the age of 81 after he was recently diagnosed with cancer.

Paul, real name Paul Williams, is best known for his 1972 single Me And Mrs Jones, which won him a Grammy. He released 15 albums during his career that saw him mixing soul, R&B and jazz influences with pop, psychedelia and electronic music.

A statement on his website says: “We regret to announce that Billy has passed away at home after a serious medical condition.

“We would like to extend our sincere condolences to his wife Blanche and family as they, and the world, grieve the loss of a musical icon that helped pioneer today’s R&B music.

“Billy will be truly missed.”

Paul’s manager, Beverly Gay, confirmed separately that the singer died at home in Blackwood, New Jersey, after having been diagnosed with cancer and sent to hospital the previous week.