OFFICIAL HOME OF THE INTERNATIONAL FAN CLUB for the Village People


 

The Village People have been around for more than forty years. This website features third iteration of the group's members.
Content is from the site's 2001 archived pages and other sources.
The Village People are still on tour with different members than those featured on this site. Do a web search to see if they are preforming near you.

The current OFFICIAL website for Village People is found at: www.officialvillagepeople.com/

 

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Village People is an American disco group well-known for their on-stage costumes, catchy tunes and suggestive lyrics. The group was originally conceived by Jacques Morali and Henri Belolo to target disco's gay audience. The group's name refers to New York City's Greenwich Village, at the time known for its large gay population. Its members were a symbolic group of fantasy stereotypes in attire often worn by gay men of Greenwich Village.

The group quickly became popular and moved into the mainstream, scoring several disco and dance hits internationally, including the hit singles "Macho Man", "In the Navy", "Go West" and their biggest hit, "Y.M.C.A.".

During the end of the disco music themed era, the group adapted to a more electronic and soulful music style with their later releases

 

Original Members



Circa 2001

WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL HOME OF THE FACES OF DISCO
VILLAGE PEOPLE

Village People are now in their 23rd year bumping and grinding and singing to audiences around the world. Check out their CONCERT dates, join their FAN CLUB, buy their MUSIC, go SHOPPING for fun stuff.

Village People dedicate this site to their friend and the original Leatherman Glenn Hughes who passed away this year. While he has not performed with Village People since 1996, he has remained a part of the group behind

 
 
Glenn Hughes
July 18, 1950 - March 4, 2001
"We will never be the same" - Village People

 

 



 

HISTORY

The First Decade

Producer/Composer Jacques Morali found Felipe dancing in his Indian costume in a crowd in NY’s Greenwich Village. Felipe’s special visual attraction brought the idea to mind to put together a group of Village icons from various American social groups.

Soon after, Morali saw Victor Willis in Broadway’s The Wiz and Victor brought along Alex Briley to play a G.I. With partner Henri Belolo, Morali held auditions for 3 more performers and Village People was formed.

Selling more than 65 million recordings (1987 Dance Music Report), Village People are an instant phenomenom with hits San Francisco/In Hollywood, Macho Man, YMCA, In the Navy, Go West and more. The Disco Era is in full bloom.

Madonna and Joan Rivers are among artists who have appeared as opening acts for Village People in Las Vegas, Madison Square Garden, Japan’s Budokan, Sidney’s Hordern Pavilion and Hollywood’s Greek Theatre. Even Michael Jackson co-stars with Village People in LA’s Palladium.

The group wins many worldwide awards including the American Music Award-Favorite Musical Group 1979, AGVA’s Georgie Award, West Germany’s Gold Lion Award for music excellence, Brazil’s 1981 Award for Best Act, etc.

Village People star in their own 1980 major feature movie Can’t Stop the Music co-starring Steve Guttenberg, Bruce Jenner, Valerie Perrine, Paul Sand, June Havoc, Tammy Grimes and directed by Nancy Walker. It remains a popular cult film around the world.

Village People are on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine and are featured in Guiness Book of Hits, Time, Playboy, Playgirl, GQ, US, People, Paris Match, World Book Encyclopedia, Dick Clark’s 25 Years of Rock ‘n Roll & hundreds more. Television appearances include The Love Boat, Bob Hope Show, 20/20 (twice), American Bandstand, Solid Gold, Soul Train, Midnight Special and dozens more in more than 20 countries.

The group takes a short break from the rigors of touring in 1986, during which time some of the members explored individual careers.

The Second Decade

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING NOW: 1988 - present

"THEY HELPED DEFINE A POP ERA, AND THEY ARE BACK!" - Billboard
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"THE BEST CONCERT WE’VE HAD IN YEARS!" - New York University
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"STILL AS SEXY AS EVER, AUDIENCES WARMED TO THEIR ENTHUSIASM, STRONG VERSATILE VOCALS AND CHOREOGRAPHY!" -The News, Australia
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"VILLAGE PEOPLE HAVE MAINSTREAM ACCEPTANCE! THE CROWD LAPPED IT UP, SINGING ALONG!" - Disney World’s New Year’s Eve show, /Orlando Sentinel
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"EXUBERANT-A WILDLY ENTERTAINING PERFORMANCE!" - NY Daily News
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"FABULOUS! VILLAGE PEOPLE TOOK THE CROWD BY STORM, SINGING LIVE AND PERFORMING BRILLIANTLY! - London Evening Standard

Village People regroup under the banner of Sixuvus ("six of us") Ltd. Finally their own bosses, and with the help of a new management team, Village People has built an amazing success story of live performances worldwide, new young audiences, television and video appearances, and industry respect.

Of the originating and long-term members, Ray, David, Felipe, Jeff and Alex continued on. Glenn is still active with the business of Sixuvus Ltd. but, as of 1995, is currently on hiatus from performing. In his place is the group’s newest member Eric Anzalone.

Village People wrote and now perform in their show a new classic entitled Trash Disco, a tribute to the many artists and dance hits which are now a memorable part of the disco era. They recorded in 1990 on CBS Records(Australia) the top-ten hit Living in the Wildlife and in 1995 sang with the German Soccer Team on the BMG Records(Germany) number one hit Far Away in America .

Their hits have been heard on dozens of recent major motion pictures including Down Periscope, Waynes World II, Adams Family Values and In and Out. They have performed four times in the past 2 years on the Jay Leno Show. As well as the Rosie O’Donnell Show, Oprah and Married with Children.

They were the half-time entertainment for Australia’s Rugby Grand Finals seen by more people than the Superbowl. Their music is played during the seven inning stretch at dozens of baseball games and they often entertain sports fans with live performances following soccer and hockey games as well.

Village People recently celebrated its 20th anniversary with a national tour that included NYC’s Madison Square Garden and Radio City Music Hall, and LA’s Greek Theatre. They have just completed a unique documentary sharing music and culture with Australia’s aborigines entitled Village People Go North Down Under . Both VH-1 and MTV have featured Village People on recent programs.

As they enter their third decade, they continue to thrill audiences from 4 to 70 at concerts throughout the world.

 



 

THE 1995 to 2013 MEMBERS

 

  ALEXANDER BRILEY (G.I.)  

Alexander Briley is the original G.I./Military Man of Village People.

Alexander Briley was raised in Harlem and then Mount Vernon, New York. Son of a minister, he has been singing in church all his life.

He studied voice at the University of Hartford and is able to perform a wonderful diversity of styles. Alex has sung with jazz flautist Bobby Humphrey. He was also featured in the Off-Broadway shows MUSIC MAGIC and Althol Fugard’s drama A LESSON FROM ALOES.

Mr. Briley was brought to Jacques Morali by Victor Willis because they had done a show together. Alex had a call back for another show and had to decide which to go to. Luckily he chose Village People.

Alex has arranged most of the vocal arrangements and harmonies that the group uses. He originally performed in just jeans and a t-shirt. As the group developed, it became obvious that he needed a character, so when the group recorded In The Navy, Alex became a sailor for that number, and a soldier the rest of the time.

Alex loves shopping and enjoys most kinds of music. He likes reading and is a concerned observer of life with an incredible memory.

Currently he resides in Westchester, New York and is a member of the Board of Directors of Sixuvus Ltd. (the Village People corporation).

 

 

 



 

 

  FELIPE ROSE (Indian)  

Felipe is a native New Yorker of Puerto Rican and American Indian heritage raised in Brooklyn. From an early age, Felipe was involved in the arts. His mother, Jenny Ortiz, was a Copa Cabana girl in the late 40's. Music and the elements of show business played a large part in Felipe's upbringing.

At 16, he received a scholarship for dance with the Ballet de Puerto Rico under the supervision of Pachual Guzman. He also graduated from Adelphi Business College, receiving a 2-year Associates Business degree, which today he applies wisely in all business decisions, personally and professionally.

While performing in the New York nightclub scene, Felipe was discovered in his Native American attire by French record producer Jacques Morali. As a founding member of the group, Felipe is credited with being the inspiration of the group's visual concept. He was there from the beginning, providing input into the artistic development and creation of the group. He is very close to the band members in the true family sense, and still enjoys hitting the road with the guys.

A social powerhouse, known for hosting fantastic parties and active in charity events and American Indian affairs, Mr. Rose is a well-known personality in the entertainment industry. During the 1980's, he sang and danced with Tito Puente in concert. He also starred in the role of Bernardo in a regional theatre production of "West Side Story."

In 1996, Mr. Rose founded the Tomahawk Group which includes artistic development, an in-house, state of the art digital recording facility and a record and music publishing division.

Currently he is a New Jersey resident, a member of the Board of Directors of Sixuvus Ltd. (the Village People corporation).
 

 



 

ERIC ANZALONE (Biker/Leatherman)  

Eric is the newest member of Village People. He was born in Dayton, Ohio but grew up in Santa Barbara, California. As a graduate of San Marcos High School, he joins a special list of alumni including ER’s Anthony Edwards, actor Eric Stoltz, Tony nominee and costar of the current Broadway smash "The Producers" Cady Huffman (his high school girlfriend!), and Dean Dinning, bass player from Toad the Wet Sprocket. He studied theatre, with a music minor, at the University of Miami, Florida.

Eric performed in various stage productions around the world. He killed many brain cells in the role of Berger in the European tour of HAIR, was a soloist performing Broadway standards with the Bratislavian Orchestra, and sang on the high seas for Princess Cruises.

He starred as the purple-masked Donatello in the world tour of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles following the "Turtles" album release Coming Out Of Their Shells. He again donned the "extremely comfortable" green suit, and this time lent his voice as well, but as Raphael in the films A TURTLES' CHRISTMAS and TURTLE TUNES.

In the 1980's, Eric was the frontman for the Los Angeles based heavy-metal band PARADIGM, and he has written and performed with a few other grunge/thrash bands over the years. Recently, he was the guitarist in the grungy-alternative band SiR, and currently he is both the frontman and guitarist in his new project ALTER BOY with former MOONSEED bassist GregMcGeary.

Beginning in November 1995, Eric took over the role of the Biker/Leatherman. He continues to act and do voice overs, as well as write. Having completed his last screenplay "Without Grace" about two homeless men in New York City, he is currently at work on a, yet titled, reunion film.

Eric's hobbies include diving, cooking, reading, golf, and writing music. His favorite thing to do on the road is going out to a good dinner while enjoying a great book (a past time he learned from David Hodo who usually supplies the books).

He lives in New Jersey with his wife Jennifer and their daughter Samantha.

 

 



 

DAVID HODO (Construction Worker)  

STATISTICS
Height Hair Eyes Birthdate
5’ 10" Blonde Green July 7
Other Loves to be sent expensive works of art
David Hodo, the original Construction Worker, was born and raised in San Andreas, California (yes, on top of the fault line); many of his relatives were actual California settlers. "I’ll always be a California boy but I’m also a New Yorker at heart having now lived half of my life here."

He graduated from Sacramento State College with a B.A. in Speech. He then moved to New York City and got his Actors’ Equity card on his second day in the city (unheard of!) and made his living singing and dancing on Broadway and in too many summer stock tours to mention. He was featured on Broadway and Off-Broadway in PAL JOEY, DOCTOR JAZZ, the rock musical SALVATION and Sal Mineo’s drama FORTUNE AND MENS EYES.

The oddest job he had (other than Village People) was that of a roller skating fire eater - until he nearly burned his face off! This is how he got his nickname: Scar.

The year that he joined Village People was also the year that his birthday fell on 7-7-77, which he knew from the time he was a child was going to be a special year. With Village people he covered the globe several times over, meeting wonderful people and having some great times. Some of the more memorable moments were winning an American Music Award, being kissed by Ella Fitzgerald, shaking hands with LadyBird Johnson ("she’s an incredibly powerful presense), meeting many childhood idols - Dick Clark, The Righteous Brothers, Leslie Gore, Lou Cristie, Little Anthony and the Imperials, and especially Ike and Tina Turner whom he saw in concert over thirty years ago in the Ike and Tina Turner Review. "I was totally blown away by her and so when I was able to work and tour with her in Germany several years ago, it was all I could do to refrain from falling at her feet and vowing complete and total servitude. She is the Godess of goddesses and the indisputable Queen of Rock ‘n Roll!" Another awesome experience was at Mala Mala, a game preserve in Africa.

"Hanging out with the guys is a great pleasure. I always enjoy their company. We have been through hell and high water together and we can still make the best out of the worst situations."

He is a talented composer, having written original material for Village People which has been performed in their live show. Music is David’s soul food. He is also a voracious reader. One of his greatest fears is to be stuck somewhere without something to read.

Favorite things: David is an animal freak with two cats that he rescued from the streets of his neighborhood. He claims that if he wasn’t touring so much, he would have a menagerie.

Weaknesses: Chocolate, sunglasses, shoes, book stores and stray animals. (He’s the one you see walking around the Bronx at night with bags of dry dog and cat food.)

Mr. Hodo is the oldest of seven so he has a terminal Big Brother complex and will always be the bossy one, but "I will always be the one who steps between you and the bully."

David is a member of the Board of Directors of Sixuvus Ltd. (the Village People corporation).

 

 

 



 

RAY SIMPSON (Cop)  

Ray Simpson is the lead singer and Cop of Village People. From the days of the Village People film CAN’T STOP THE MUSIC, his voice can be heard on all Village People hits.

Born and raised in the Bronx, Ray is proud to be labeled a "Native New Yorker." He is a graduate of City College, majoring in English and minoring in Music.

Ray is a Capricorn, born on January 15th, and he proudly shares that date with Martin Luther King, Jr. With Muhammad Ali, Martin Luther King Jr. and Jesus Christ as fellow Capricorns, what better sign could there be?

Ray comes from a successful solo career and many years performing with his sister and brother-in-law, Nick Ashford and Valerie Simpson. Prior to Village People, Mr. Simpson released a solo recording album entitled TIGER LOVE.

He started doing some backup singing for Village People in its first years; soon after he was recruited (on very short notice) to join Village People when Victor Willis left.

Mr. Simpson is a real sports fan. His other hobbies include backgammon, bicycling, writing music and driving fancy cars. He is also a proud husband and father. Ray, his wife Leslie and daughter Alayna now reside in New Jersey.

Ray is a member of the Board of Directors of Sixuvus Ltd. (the Village People corporation).

 



 

JEFF OLSON (Cowboy)  

Jeff Olson, the Cowboy, was born in New York City, but his family moved to West Islip, a Long Island suburb, when he was six months old. As early as third grade he showed an interest in music and acting, participating in school plays and regularly singing with the school chorus. He developed a reputation for organizing his school bus buddies to sing along to pop songs on the way to grammar school, much to the dismay of the bus drivers.

In High School, Jeff continued his interest in music with his involvement in numerous "garage bands," bands that never seemed to do much more than rehearse. After graduation, Jeff moved to Mitchell, South Dakota to begin his college career at Dakota Wesleyan University. There he studied biology, history and music. During his sophomore year, he once again became involved in a band that would eventually become known as STEPCHILD. As lead singer and percussionist, they toured the upper Midwest working as their own booking agent, management, roadies, sound engineer and wardrobe personnel. After 3 years, STEPCHILD ultimately disbanded and Jeff chose to relocate to the San Francisco/Bay area in California to pursue a music career. While in California, he was also chosen to co-star in the film "L.A. Crackdown."

Jeff was then recruited by a fashion agent in San Francisco. After several years as a California model, his agency sent him to New York and then to an affiliated agency in Paris. Jeff enjoyed his life in Paris and it wasn’t long before Paris felt as familiar as his own native New York. Strangely, one night out with friends at a local restaurant frequented by models and industry people, Jeff was introduced to a certain Frenchman who was known as a successful music producer for such big name groups as The Richie Family and Village People. It was a disappointingly brief meeting for Jeff who never kept a musical career very far from his thoughts. As the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays approached in the autumn of 1980, he made plans to return to the States to spend time with family.

Back in New York that fall, he received a call from a friend telling him of an audition notice that appeared in one of the trade papers seeking a singer/dancer for a pop group. Things happened very fast that fall. He hadn’t been back from France for more than two weeks before he found himself auditioning for the famous French music producer he had met just weeks prior, Mr. Jacques Morali. The very same day he was told that he had been selected and that he was now the cowboy of the group know as Village People.

During the late 1980’s, Mr. Olson owned and operated a sports bar in the L.A. area.

Currently he is a Connecticut resident and a member of the Board of Directors of Sixuvus Ltd. (the Village People corporation).

 



DISCOGRAPHY    (*Released in the US)

 

The Singles
1977: San Francisco-In Hollywood (Everybody is a Star) /Fire Island*
1978: Macho Man*, YMCA *
1979: In the Navy*, Go West*, Ready for the 80’s, Sleazy*
1980: Can’t Stop the Music*, Magic Night
1981: 5:00 in the Morning*, Action Man*, Do You Wanna Spend the Night
1982: Fox on the Box, Play Bach
1983: America
1985: New York City, Sex Over the Phone
1990: Living in the Wildlife
1995: Far Away in America
Gold & Platinum Albums
1977: Village People*, Macho Man*
1978: Cruisin’*
1979: Go West*, Live and Sleazy*
1980: Can’t Stop the Music*
1981: Renaissance*
1982: Fox on the Box
1983: Live: Seoul
1985: Sex Over the Phone*
1989: Greatest Hits
12" Records
1978: YMCA/Macho Man*
1979: In the Navy, Go West, Sleazy
1980: Magic Night, Can’t Stop the Music
1981: Spend the Night
1982: Fox on the Box
1983: America
1984: Sex Over the Phone*
1985: New York City
1986: YMCA/Navy/Macho, Sex Over the Phone*
1989: Remix: The Hits
"Village People"
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"The Best of Village People"
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"In The Navy"
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alternate cover

"Macho Man"
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"Can't Stop The Music"
cover

alternate cover

"Go West"
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"Cruisin'"
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"Greatest Hits Remix"
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"Power Of The Night"
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"Ready for the 80's'"
single cover
   

 



 

VillagePeople-Official.com