John Davis, the true voice behind Milli Vanilli, dies from COVID-19 at the age of 66

Davis provided vocals on 'Girl You Know It's True', but the duo took credit for his performance

John Davis, one of the true singers behind the shamed pop duo Milli Vanilli, has died from coronavirus at the age of 66.

Davis was the actual singer on Milli Vanilli’s 1989 album ‘Girl You Know It’s True’.

The duo, comprised of Fabrice Morvan and Rob Pilatus, sold more than 30 million singles and took credit for Davis’ talents as they lip-synced to hits they never recorded.

But when the truth emerged, the pair were forced to return the Grammy Award they won for Best New Artist in 1990. They also faced a series of lawsuits, with refunds offered to fans who had attended concerts and bought Milli Vanilli recordings.

Paying tribute on Facebook, Davis’s daughter Jasmin asked fans for one “last round of applause”.

“He made a lot of people happy with his laughter and smile, his happy spirit, love and especially through his music,” she wrote.

Davis was born in South Carolina, but began working with the Munich-based duo after he moved to Germany in the 1980s.

The ambitious ruse saw Davis and other session singers provide vocals on ‘Girl You Know It’s True’, but they were only listed as backing singers, with Morvan and Pilatus falsely given credit.

The duo were formed by producer Frank Farian, who later admitted he had hired Davis to cover for the lack of “vocal quality” provided by¬†Morvan and Pilatus.

They later attempted an unsuccessful comeback, before Pilatus died in 1998 following an overdose at the age of 32.

Davis, meanwhile, joined forced with fellow original singer Brad Howell to form The Real Milli Vanilli, but failed to emulate the success of the original act.

In later years, he reunited with Morvan to perform as their collaborative project Face Meets Voice.