Walter Morrison, the singer, keyboardist, producer, one-man studio band and funk mastermind who recorded as Junie Morrison and under other names, died on Jan. 21. He was believed to be 62.
His death was reported on his Facebook page on Thursday by his daughter, Akasha. It said he was living in London.
The death was also announced by his recent collaborator, the musician Dam-Funk, and by his 1970s band the Ohio Players. The cause was not specified.
Mr. Morrison was an architect of hits by the Ohio Players and Parliament-Funkadelic, pre-eminent 1970s funk outfits. He also had a prolific career on his own, making albums on which he played and sang all the parts.
His music pumped across dance floors from the 1970s into the hip-hop era and has been sampled by Kanye West, Jay Z, A Tribe Called Quest, Digital Underground, De La Soul, the Roots, Kris Kross and J Dilla, among many others.
Mr. Morrison was a writer and collaborator on the Ohio Players’ “Funky Worm,” “Ecstasy” and “Pain”; on Funkadelic’s “One Nation Under a Groove” and “(Not Just) Knee Deep” (although he was not credited on that song) and on Parliament’s late-1970s and early-’80s albums, including “Motor Booty Affair.”
George Clinton, the leader of Parliament-Funkadelic, described Mr. Morrison as “phenomenal” and wrote in his memoir that Mr. Morrison “could do it all, and if you weren’t careful, he would.”
The high, wriggly Arp Soloist synthesizer line on the Ohio Players’ “Funky Worm,” either directly sampled or imitated, became an essential part of the Los Angeles hip-hop that Dr. Dre turned into a genre, G-funk, in productions for N.W.A, Snoop Dogg and others.
Mr. Morrison entered the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1997 with Parliament-Funkadelic. Solange Knowles’s 2016 album, “A Seat at the Table,” includes “Junie,” a song titled after him.
In a 2015 interview for the Red Bull Music Academy, Mr. Morrison said, “Funk is an excellent platform for moving or removing the ills that may be present in our lives.”
Mr. Morrison was born in 1954 in Dayton, Ohio, and took to music as a child. At 5, he played piano in church before his feet reached the floor, and gospel became a foundation for his music. Performing in various ensembles and styles, he learned more instruments: guitar, bass, drums, brasses. At Roosevelt High School in Dayton, he was a student choir director and orchestra conductor.
Mr. Morrison was still a teenager when he joined the Ohio Players in the early 1970s, soon after graduating from high school. He became their lead singer, trumpeter, keyboardist and soon musical director and producer.
The band members nicknamed him Junie, he told the Red Bull Music Academy, because they were older. “It took quite a while before they let me forget my age and lack of experience in the ‘ways of the world,’ ” he said.
“Funky Worm,” with Mr. Morrison on multiple instruments, became the Ohio Players’ first No. 1 R&B hit. He left the band to make solo albums in 1974, billing himself as Junie. Except for orchestral arrangements, he usually sang, played and produced every part, as another Midwestern prodigy — Prince — would do a few years later on his debut.
On his solo albums, Mr. Morrison sang flirtations, dance invitations, philosophy and social commentary in tunes that drew on funk, ballads, jazz, blues, rock, reggae and Latin styles. He was also an early experimenter with technology like synthesizers, vocoders and drum machines. And he had a humorous streak: Quacking duck sounds turn up across his discography.
He joined Mr. Clinton’s funk empire in 1978 and worked into the early 1980s with Funkadelic, Parliament and the P-Funk All-Stars as well as on Mr. Clinton’s solo debut album, “Computer Games.”
Mr. Morrison was credited both under his own name and as J. S. Theracon, a pseudonym he revived for a 2014 single. He continued to make solo albums in the 1980s, among them the dance-oriented “Evacuate Your Seats” in 1984. He also started his own label, Akashic, and by the end of the ’80s had moved to London. He had his own studio there and produced club hits, including mid-1990s collaborations with Soul II Soul.
Mr. Morrison rejoined Mr. Clinton and the P-Funk All-Stars in the 1990s. In 1998 Mr. Morrison shared a major gospel honor, the Dove Award for Song of the Year, for “Stomp,” by Kirk Franklin and the Family.
He also collaborated on John Tesh’s “Give Me Forever (I Do),” which became a wedding perennial with James Ingram’s vocal, and went on to produce much of Mr. Ingram’s 1999 album “Forever More (Love Songs, Hits & Duets).”
Mr. Morrison revitalized his solo career on his own new label, Juniefunk, in the 2000s. He recorded as Junie Morrison for the 2004 album “When the City,” and under aliases, including Micronagual, Algorithm and BoyinSea.
Last year, determined to combat what he saw as an “all-time high” of negativity, he released ambient music both as Junie Morrison and as BoyinSea.
“Musicians, if they choose to, can drive a tonal wedge through the noisome pestilence; the stench that often accompanies our contemporary societal lifestyles,” he said. “I wanted to conceptualize an escape from the tensions and atmospheric pollution, even if it’s only a temporary psycho-acoustical one.”