Ray Simpson (born January 15, 1954) is an American singer best known as a former lead singer and "Cop" of the disco super-group Village People, having been in that role for over 30 years. In August 1979, he replaced original lead singer, Victor Willis as the Cop, a role he would fill until 1982, and again from 1987 until Willis' return in 2017. Simpson had been doing backup singing for Village People in its first years, which is why he was recruited (on very short notice) to join the group when Willis left.
His sister, Valerie Simpson, was part of the husband-and-wife songwriting-production team and recording artists Ashford & Simpson. The duo worked with many Motown artists, most successfully with Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell and then Diana Ross, and with several non-Motown artists, like Chaka Khan and The Brothers Johnson. They also found success as recording artists, notably with their songs "Found A Cure" (1979) and "Solid" (1984). Ray Simpson spent many years performing with the duo. Prior to joining Village People, Simpson also released a solo recording album titled Tiger Love.
Ray is a member of the Board of Directors of Sixuvus Ltd (the Village People corporation).
- "Can't Stop the Music". The New York Times. 1980.
- "Village People". Rolling Stone. Retrieved August 7, 2019.
- Leichman, Abigail. "Ashford and Simpson sing of wedded bliss", The Record (Bergen County), September 7, 2007. Accessed August 9, 2007. "'People tried to talk us out of songwriting, but we just kept doing it, and eventually we made it through,' said Simpson, whose brother, Village People lead singer Raymond Simpson, is a longtime Teaneck resident."