William Francis Washington was born in 1943 and raised by his aunt in a house of ill-repute called The Big Boot in Evansville, Indiana.
His singing career began when he adopted the name ‘Geno’ from an Italian-American footballer and took to the stage while serving in the military.
The US Air Force took him to England, where he joined Brixton-based R&B outfit The Ram Jam Band.
An irresistible fixture on London’s 60s scene, Geno’s first two (live) albums were amongst the biggest-selling UK releases of the decade.
But the burgeoning flower power movement eventually put black barnstorming bands out of business and Washington directed his attention instead to spiritual development.
After he became the subject of Dexy’s Midnight Runners‘ 1980 UK number one, Washington encouraged Ian Brown to join The Stone Roses, published a novel, worked as a motivational speaker and became a member of the Guild Of Hypnotists.
Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band were still performing in 2010.