HOT CHOCOLATE is a British soul band popular during the 1970s and 1980s, formed by Errol Brown and Tony Wilson. The act had at least one hit every year from 1970 to 1984, and their song "You Sexy Thing" made the Top 10 in three decades.
HOT CHOCOLATE formed in Brixton, London, England in 1968. Members of the group included Errol Brown, Tony Connor, Larry Ferguson, Harvey Hinsley, Patrick Olive and Tony Wilson.
In 1969 the band started working on a reggae version of the John Lennon song "Give Peace A Chance". Errol Brown had changed the lyrics for their version but was informed that he could not do this without John Lennon’s permission, so a copy of the demo was sent to the Beatles Apple record label to see what they thought of it. Fortunately, John Lennon loved the version and it was released on the Apple label. The group was given the named 'The Hot Chocolate Band' by a secretary at the company, Mavis Smith, the band later changed it to just 'Hot Chocolate'.
Towards the end of 1969 Mickie Most signed Errol Brown and the cofounder of the group Tony Wilson as writers and recorded their songs with Mary Hopkins, Julie Felix and Herman's Hermits before encouraging them to come up with a song for themselves.
In 1970, HOT CHOCOLATE, with Errol Brown as lead singer, released their first record entitled "Love Is Life" which reached No. 6 in the UK Singles Charts. This was the start of a fifteen-year career for the group who amassed a total of over thirty hits and also became the only group in the UK to have a hit for fifteen consecutive years. The successful hit line-up from 1975-1984: Errol Brown (lead vocals), Patrick Olive (bass & percussion), Larry Ferguson (keyboards), Tony Connor (drums & percussion), Harvey Hinsley (guitars).
In 1981 HOT CHOCOLATE had the honor of being invited by Prince Charles and Lady Diana at their pre-wedding reception at Buckingham Palace which was attended by heads of Government and many members of European Royalty.
In 1986 Errol Brown left the band and took time out to spend more time with his wife and then young children. The rest of the members of HOT CHOCOLATE also took some time off to consider their future and in 1992 Patrick Olive, Harvey Hinsley and Tony Connor decided to start touring again.
The band found a new singer Greg Bannis and keyboard players Andy Smith & Steve Ansell.
In 2010 singer Kennie Simon replaced Greg Bannis on vocals creating what many are saying is the best sound ever after the leaving of Errol Brown.
Sadly, Errol Brown died from liver cancer on 6th May 2015, ath the age of 71. R.I.P. !
Since 1992, HOT CHOCOLATE has enjoyed until today continued success touring all around the world performing to many thousands of fans who love the music of the band.
The current line-up (since 2010):
Patrick Olive - bass, percussion
Tony Connor - drums, percussion
Harvey Hinsley - guitars
Steve Ansell - keyboards, guitars
Andy Smith - keyboards
Kennie Simon - lead vocals, keyboards
The Videos :
"Love Is Life" (1970)
"You Could Have Been A Lady" (1971)
"I Believe (In Love)" (1971)
"Brother Louie" (1973)
"A Child's Prayer" (1975)
"You Sexy Thing" (1975/1976)
"Don't Stop It Now" (1976)
"Man To Man" (1976)
"Heaven Is In The Back Seat Of My Cadillac" (1976/1977)
"Put Your Love In Me" (1977/1978)
"Every 1's A Winner" (1978)
"I'll Put You Together Again" (1978/1979)
"Mindless Boogie" (1979)
"Going Through The Motions" (1979)
"No Doubt About It" (1980)
"Gotta Give Up Your Love" (1981)
"You'll Never Be So Wrong" (1981)
"Girl Crazy" (1982)
"It Started With A Kiss" (1982)
"Tears On The Telephone" (1983)
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