Boney M frontman Bobby Farrell found dead in Russian hotel room

Bobby Farrell, 61, the frontman for Boney M, was found dead in his hotel room at the Ambassador Hotel in St. Petersburg, Russia yesterday morning. 

The cause of death is currently be investigated by the St. Petersburg branch of Russia's investigative committee.

Farrell was born on Aruba and, at 15, went to work as a sailor, eventually settling in Norway. He went on to DJ both in the Netherlands and, eventually, Germany.

In 1975, German singer Frank Farian recorded the song Baby Do You Wanna Bump under the name Boney M. When the song went on to become a hit in Europe, he needed to put together a group who could perform at shows and lip-synch to his recordings.

After some initial changes in personnel, the final group was made up of Farrell, Liz Mitchell, Maizie Williams and Marcia Barrett. 

Over the years, Farrell had become a liability to the group and, during the extended recording sessions for the album Boonoonoonoos during 1980 and 81, Farian finally got fed up and fired him from the group.

That was followed in 1985 by the group splitting apart, although the original members would reform to record Greatest Hits of All Times - Remix '88. 

Over the years, the various members have fronted new versions of Boney M with Farrell recorded under the names Boney M Featuring Bobby Farrell and Bobby Farrell's Boney M along with solo records under his own name.