Wally Holmes

Beloved Musician; Beloved Man

Waldo “Wally” Holmes was an American musician, songwriter, and producer known for his contributions to R&B, soul, pop, and jazz music. He was born on October 27, 1928, in San Diego, California, and passed away in Los Angeles, California on September 1, 2021, at the age of 92.

Holmes was a talented trumpeter and songwriter who formed a group called Brothers and Sisters in 1968 with his friend St. Clair Lee as lead singer. The group played soul pop music and had plans to perform in Las Vegas with an eight-piece backing group. However, the group disbanded due to a wrong combination of singers. Lee suggested forming another group, and in 1969, the Children of Howard Hughes was created, which later became The Hues Corporation.

Holmes wrote The Hues Corporation’s biggest hit, “Rock The Boat,” as well as another song, “I Caught Your Act.” His success with The Hues Corporation led to him being signed to Famous Music in 1975, where he was involved in various assignments while retaining his position as executive producer and writer for the group.

Aside from his work with The Hues Corporation, Holmes wrote and produced a number of other songs, including “Hold The High Ground,” “Boy Meets Girl,” and “Off My Cloud.” In addition to his work as a musician and songwriter, Holmes was the director of the Sweet and Hot Music Festival in 2008 and 2011.

In his later years, Holmes was the leader of the traditional jazz group Yankee Wailers from Santa Monica, which performed together in various venues from 1988 to 2014. He also collaborated with singer-songwriter Ruby Fradkin. The Yankee Wailers have played every year at the Sweet & Hot Music Festival.

Waldo “Wally” Holmes was a beloved figure in the music industry, known for his musical talent and contributions to the world of music. His passing on September 1, 2021, marked the end of a legendary career that spanned over five decades. He will be deeply missed by his widow, Ava DuPree Holmes, and his friends, family, and fans everywhere.

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