RIP Cynthia: Sly and the Family Stone says farewell to founding member


Trumpeter Cynthia Robinson passed away on Nov. 24 after a battle with cancer. The news was announced on her Facebook page: “Friends, Famliy and Fans through out the world, Cynthia Robinson, Trumpeter and Co-Founder of Sly and The Family Stone has passed. Our condolences go out to the Robinson Family and her bandmates and all family & friends! You are in our thoughts and prayers and we are here for you. Please continue to support the Cynthia Robinson Cancer Care Fund due to the rising medical costs (anything helps). This site will stay up in her memory. God bless you Cynthia!”

“Robinson’s career with Sly Stone began in 1966 when the bandleader put together a group called the Stoners,” Rolling Stone reported. “They fell apart quickly, though, and she became a fixture of the Family Stone – a group whose members were male and female and represented different races, a novel idea at the time – alongside her cousin Larry Graham.”

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As one of the first black and female trumpet players in a major American band, Robinson was the first such player in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Cynthia is survived by two daughters: Laura Marie and Sylvyette Phunne Stone (with Sly Stone).

Fans posted very heartfelt tributes on the Facebook post: “I’m forever grateful that you were apart of my life in my younger years and when Laura MmaMma Cook would stay with my Aunt… memories are of a time of youth and goodtimes…a time where the music forever rings loud and pure. Let the horns forever play♡♡♡ Much Aloha Always♡♡♡”

Cynthia appeared in this backstage interview last winter:

“People expect to have a swinging good time (when they see our shows),” she said in the interview. “It’s just happy times. They lift us up.”

Goodbye and godspeed, Cynthia!

Photo via Cynthia’s Facebook page.

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